Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski today announced plans to introduce the New Opportunities for Tourism and Entertainment (NOTE) Act, local legislation to enable more restaurants and bars to offer live music and entertainment across Baltimore County and support the recovery of musicians and performers affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Local musicians and performers entertain, inspire, and help make communities more vibrant. This pandemic has upended their way of life, and this effort creates new opportunities to help them recover as quickly as possible,” said County Executive Olszewski. “By helping expand the work we’ve already done in Catonsville, this legislation will create new opportunities for the small businesses and musicians across Baltimore County.”
Under existing zoning laws, hundreds of Baltimore County establishments are prohibited from hosting live musical entertainment. As a result, local performers and artists are missing out on valuable performance opportunities while County businesses lose potential revenue. The NOTE Act will significantly expand the number of businesses eligible to apply for a Live Musical Entertainment permit and will allow most restaurants, retail, and other businesses in Baltimore County to host live music.
According to a County press release:
This is the latest effort from the Olszewski Administration to support Baltimore County’s creative community.
To support artists amid the pandemic, Olszewski provided $200,000 in grant funding to help artists recoup financial losses from canceled performances and events.
In 2019, Olszewski led the effort to help secure Baltimore County’s first designated first Arts and Entertainment (A&E) District in Catonsville to help attract artists, arts organizations, and other creative enterprises and drive additional tourism to the community.
The bill will be introduced in the County Council session scheduled for Monday, March 15.