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News Maryland Baltimore County Arbutus Lansdowne

Baltimore County Council to consider measure to improve physical fitness in county

Encouraged by a constituent who is also a chiropractor for the Ravens, 1st District Councilman Tom Quirk has proposed legislation to establish a Baltimore County Advisory Council on Physical Fitness.

The Baltimore County Council will consider the measure, which was cosponsored by 5th District Councilman David Marks, during its work session on April 29.

"I think that having a fitness council is just one more thing Baltimore County can do to help lead the way to encourage Baltimore County employees and residents to seriously consider their health and their exercise routines," said Quirk, who represents Arbutus, Catonsville and Lansdowne.

"I think one thing that's really concerning is seeing all the kids today. Kids that aren't jumping on their bikes and going for walks — instead they're sitting behind a computer playing video games all day," Quirk said. "We have to do more to encourage fitness programs and healthy activities among the residents of Baltimore County."

Quirk said the idea was presented to him by Doug Miller, a Catonsville resident appointed to the State Advisory Council on Physical Fitness by Gov. Martin O'Malley.

Miller said his goal is to make county residents the most physically fit county in the state.

"Given the sedentary lifestyle of how we live every day, we want to get people up and moving," Miller said.

He said the goal of creating the council is to promote awareness of the benefits of fitness.

If approved, the fitness council will have 11 members. Four will be appointed by the county executive and each of the seven county council members will make one appointment to the council.

Each member will serve for a term of three years.

According to the bill, the directors of county departments of aging, education, health and parks and recreation, will designate a non-voting member to provide technical assistance.

The council will have one chair who will serve a one-year term.

Duties of the council will include:

• Serve as the liaison between the county and various fitness groups at the federal, state and local level.

• Consult with county advisory councils on their physical fitness programs.

• Distribute information about county physical fitness programs by publication, advertisement, conferences, workshops, programs and other means.

• Collect and assemble information available from other agencies.

• Encourage the improvement of physical fitness habits through recreation, sports and exercise, as well as promote physical fitness throughout the county.

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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