In 1992, oversight of the Dorchester County Jail transferred from the Sheriff to the newly created Department of Corrections. At that time, the Jail was renamed the Detention Center (Chapter 21, Acts of 1992; County Code, sec. 44-9).

The Department of Corrections oversees the Detention Center, and is responsible for the health and well being of those incarcerated there. The Center houses convicted prisoners, as well as persons awaiting trial.

Overseeing the Department of Corrections and the Detention Center, the Warden is appointed by the County Council (County Code, secs. 75-1 through 75-5).


Responsible for County readiness during man-made and natural disasters, Emergency Services coordinates efforts with federal, State and local agencies to minimize damage and loss of life during emergencies. With Emergency Management, the Director develops the County's emergency response plans. In addition, Emergency Services operates the Citizen Corp program, which offers emergency medical and response training to residents, and promotes involvement in community and county safety.

The Director of Emergency Services is appointed by the Governor (Code Public Safety Article, secs. 14-109 through 14-113).

Emergency Services is composed of Emergency Communications, Emergency Management, and Emergency Medical Services, and is assisted by the Local Emergency Planning Committee.

Emergency Communications staffs and maintains the County's 911 Center. The Center receives all emergency calls in the County, dispatches responders, and coordinates their efforts. Emergency Communications also maintains nonemergency communications between State Police, the Sheriff's Office, municipal police departments, and career and volunteer fire and rescue companies operating in the County.

With the Director of Emergency Services, Emergency Management develops the County's emergency response plans. These plans address County actions to be taken towards disaster preparation, response, and recovery. Emergency Management also advises the County Council and the Director of Emergency Services on matters related to emergency preparation, and disaster recovery.

Overseeing emergency medical and rescue responders operating in the County, Emergency Medical Services staffs and maintains an ambulance fleet to ensure availability of emergency medical care in all areas of the County.

In June 2010, Emergency Medical Services absorbed the ambulance services of Cambridge Emergency Medical Services.


For the Lower Eastern Region (Dorchester, Somerset, Wicomico & Worcester counties), the Deputy State Fire Marshal serves as an assistant to the State Fire Marshal, and investigates and enforces laws regarding arson, fire prevention, the installation and maintenance of fire detection and extinguisher equipment, the availability and adequacy of fire exits at public and commercial establishments, and the storage, sale or use of explosives and combustibles (Code Public Safety Article, sec. 6-305).

The Deputy State Fire Marshal is appointed by the State Fire Marshal (Code Public Safety Article, sec. 6-303).

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