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Noteworthy Notes - 2

Falls Prevention Education Programs for Seniors

Activities are scheduled in October to highlight falls prevention education for seniors.

 "Falls are the leading cause of injury-related emergency room visits and hospital admissions for Marylanders over the age of 65 -- but are highly preventable," said Odile Saddi, director of the County's Area Agency on Aging. In 2010, there were 3,294 calls to 9-1-1 attributed to falls by individuals over the age of 60. Nearly 2,100 of the falls were by individuals over the age of 80.

Upcoming falls prevention activities are listed below.

  • October 3: Holy Cross Hospital Senior Source: Better Balance Exercise Classes. Call 301-754-8800.
  • October 4: New Bone Builders exercise class to increase bone density, strength and balance begins at Wisconsin Place Community Center. Call 240-777-1350.
  • October 31-December 5: OASIS offers Free From Falls. Call 301-469-6800, extension 211.
  • Jewish Community Center's ACE program focusing on Science and Technology will feature aging-in-place expert Louis Tenenbaum on falls prevention. Call 301-348-3864.

For information from the National Institutes on Health related to decreasing the risk of falls, go to http://nihseniorhealth.gov/ and search for "Falls and Older Adults."


Going to The Fillmore? MCDOT Recommends Transit and Parking Options

The Fillmore, the County's newest music venue in downtown Silver Spring, opened earlier tin September. To help patrons attending shows and events, the Montgomery County Department of Transportation (MCDOT) has offered tips on getting there and/or where to park:

Take Transit. The Fillmore is an easy walk from the Silver Spring Metro station. Metro operates until midnight on weekdays and to 3 a.m. on Friday and Saturday nights. There are also several Metrobus and Ride On bus routes that serve the area. Check transit options on the County's website.

Drive. For those who choose to drive, MCDOT recommends using the Spring Street/Cameron Street garage located at 1800 Cameron Street. With more than 1,300 spaces, this garage is generally less congested than some of the other parking garages and lots in the area and is just a short stroll from The Fillmore's front door. Parking is free after 7 p.m. on weekdays and all day Saturday and Sunday. Get more information about parking options on the County's website.


New Online Newsletter for Upcounty Residents

To help keep upcounty residents informed about happenings in their area, the Upcounty Regional Office is producing a weekly online newsletter. Entitled "Upcounty Today," the newsletter features photos and short articles on community events, programs and news from Montgomery County of interest to local residents.

To make sure you receive the newsletter on a regular basis, subscribe by going to www.montgomerycountymd.gov/esubscription.

Questions and/or comments may be sent to upcounty.citizen@montgomerycountymd.gov or call Cathy Matthews, regional director of the Upcounty Regional Office at 240-777-8040.


County Executive's New Appointments

County Executive Ike Leggett recently announced two appointments that have been confirmed by the County Council.

Department of Permitting Services

Diane Schwartz-Jones has been selected to serve as Director of the Department of Permitting Services. In her current position as Assistant Chief Administrative Officer (ACAO), Schwartz-Jones has made significant contributions to land-use, planning and development-related decisions and activities in the County. Her experience and expertise will help assure that the Department of Permitting Services remains a partner in the regulation of growth and development of the County.

Office of the County Executive

Ramona Bell-Pearson was chosen to fill the ACAO vacancy created by the appointment of Diane Schwartz-Jones. Bell-Pearson began her career with the County in the Office of the County Attorney in 1990. She has been working as a senior manager in the Department of Health and Human Services, where she handled quasi-legal and administrative matters pertaining to policy, confidentiality and risk matters.

This transition is expected to take place by the end of September.


Damascus Welcomes New Woodfield Rd. Extension

Some new critical traffic congestion relief and improved traffic safety measures came to upper Montgomery County with the recent opening of the 3,400-foot extension of Woodfield Rd. from north of Main St. (Maryland Route 108) to Ridge Rd. (Maryland Route 27).

A separate eight-foot wide bikeway/shared use path was built along Woodfield Rd. Extended and along Ridge Rd. Environmental features include construction of six acres of offsite reforestation area, 1.3 acres of offsite wetlands and three storm water management facilities. The project also includes traffic signals, streetlights, crosswalks, bus stops and Americans with Disabilities Act ramps to ensure the safety of pedestrians and cyclists.

Learn more about the extension.


Officials Unveil Pedestrian, Traffic Safety Improvements on Castle Blvd.

Montgomery County Executive Ike Leggett and County Councilmember Nancy Navarro recently joined community members to celebrate pedestrian and traffic safety improvements installed by the Montgomery County Department of Transportation (MCDOT) along Castle Blvd. from Briggs Chaney Rd. to Castle Terr.

The traffic calming measures installed included new concrete bump-outs and pedestrian refuge islands; modified curbs, gutters and sidewalks to ensure compliance with Americans with Disabilities Act standards; relocated bus stops to improve safety for transit users; enhanced crossings at bus stops; new traffic signs and pavement markings; and additional minor roadway repairs. Engineers ensured that the traffic calming design would not impede biking.

Read more about the project.


"Be a Time Traveler" in Montgomery County

The Heritage Tourism Alliance of Montgomery County (Heritage Montgomery) has produced a new guide to local heritage sites – "Be a Time Traveler! Discover Montgomery County, Maryland." The 25-page brochure features 29 locations, all with unique stories to tell about the area's rich history.

In addition to photos, contact information and descriptions for the sites, each listing in the brochure also includes a QR (Quick Response) code. By using a QR code reader app that can be downloaded free-of-charge onto a smartphone, users can scan the codes in the brochure and be connected directly to the site's webpage. In addition to having more detailed information available at a traveler's fingertips, the brochure and QR codes provide visitors with information on destinations that are unstaffed or not staffed full time.

To see the brochure, visit HeritageMontgomery.org. Paper copies are available from the Heritage Montgomery office (12515 Milestone Manor La., Germantown MD 20876; 301-515-0753) or at heritage sites around the County.


Long Term Care Ombudsman Program Seeks Volunteers

Montgomery County's Long Term Care Ombudsman Program is seeking individuals interested in helping to enhance the quality of life for nursing home residents as long-term care advocates with the Montgomery County Department of Health and Human Services. Volunteers make regular visits to residents in nursing homes and assisted living facilities at convenient locations throughout Montgomery County.

The intensive orientation program for volunteer candidates is a comprehensive training focused on promoting resident rights in nursing home and assisted living systems. The orientation will be held Monday, October 10 through Friday, October 14 at Holiday Park Senior Center, 3950 Ferrara Dr., Wheaton. The course is held daily from 9 am. to 3 p.m. Class size is limited and pre-registration is required.

To learn more, contact Eileen Bennett at eileen.bennett@Montgomerycountymd.gov or 240-777-1067.


Montgomery's Help Allows State to Accelerate Construction on Intersection Improvements

The Maryland State Highway Administration (SHA), in partnership with Montgomery County's Department of Transportation (MCDOT), recently began a series of intersection improvements on state roads.

MCDOT is helping to fund these enhancements to reduce traffic congestion at selected bottlenecks and improve vehicular and pedestrian safety, because state roads carry the heaviest traffic volumes in the County. The County's 50 percent contribution of $3.2 million for the design, right-of-way acquisition and construction costs of these projects has allowed the improvements to move forward more quickly.

The intersection improvements are part of a list of priority transportation projects developed by Montgomery County Executive Ike Leggett and the County Council. Funding was approved by the County Council as part of the County's project for State Transportation Participation that began in fiscal year 2007.

Seven of the 10 projects are currently under construction.

See the complete list of projects with current status.

CATEGORIES: Worth Noting , Seniors , Transportation , County Executive
POSTED: Friday, September 30, 2011 | 2:30:00 AM |

Noteworthy Notes - 2

County Program Helps Residents Improve Energy Efficiency of Their Homes

Owner occupants of single-family homes and condominiums in the County who make new energy efficiency improvements may receive incentives up to $3,000 under the recently launched Residential Energy Efficiency Rebate Program. Eligible improvements include air sealing, insulation, heating and cooling, geothermal heat pumps, solar water heating and appliances.

The $1.1 million program is made possible by a U.S Dept. of Energy grant with funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).

The rebate program has been designed to work in concert with other sources of incentives available from Pepco, BG&E, Potomac Edison (Allegheny Power) and the Maryland Energy Administration Programs, as well as federal tax credits. Participants may also be able to take advantage of financing programs offered by the Maryland Clean Energy Center’s Home Energy Loan Program.

To apply for the new residential rebate, consumers must have a completed energy audit and a scope of work from a professional installer. Learn more about the program and apply online at the County’s energy funding website at www.mcenergyfunding.com.

Applications will be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis. The site also will provide information about the availability of consumer workshops as they are scheduled where consumers can learn more about the rebates and the application process

The residential rebate is part of a package of programs developed under the County’s ARRA grant. Other efforts will retrofit commercial, multi-family and public buildings, train workers in new, green skills, and provide public education and outreach.

For more information on these and other programs, visit www.montgomerycountymd.gov/dep.


Back to School = Safe Drivers + Safe Kids

With Montgomery County Schools now open, Police Chief J. Thomas Manger, along with the officers of the Montgomery County Police Department, are encouraging all community members to continue to make the safety of our children a top priority. 

To help reduce speeding in school zones, the Automated Traffic Enforcement Unit has deployed a fleet of mobile speed-camera vans rotating between schools from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m.  This is in addition to the 21 fixed speed camera sites already in place in school zones across the County.

Students riding bicycles to school are reminded that they must follow all traffic rules and signs, i.e. stop signs and traffic lights.  By law, all children under the age of 18 must wear a bicycle helmet when riding or being carried on a bicycle while riding on a public street, right-of-way, or on a bicycle path. 

Many students will be riding buses to school, and all drivers are strongly reminded that they are required to stop at least 20 feet from school buses that are stopped with flashing red lights.  It is also recommended that adults accompany young children to bus stops, and remain with them until the bus arrives.

See more tips and information for drivers, parents and students.


Seniors Can Get Organized and Stay Fit with New Classes at Schweinhaut Center

Montgomery County’s Schweinhaut Senior Center at 1000 Forest Glen Rd. in Silver Spring is offering two new classes to help seniors get organized and stay fit.

On Thursday, September 22 at 1 p.m., a workshop led by professional organizer and productivity consultant Marcie Lovett, author of “The Clutter Book: When You Can’t Let Go,” will teach strategies for managing paperwork and keeping track of important papers. The class will demonstrate what should be kept and what can be tossed. The registration fee is $2 and pre-registration is suggested. Call 240-777-8085.

On Thursday, September 8 at 10:30 a.m., a Zumba Gold demonstration will be offered, utilizing the same Latin dance and music styles of basic Zumba, just not as fast-paced.

On Thursday, October 6 at 10:30 a.m. a seven-session Zumba Gold class will begin. The program is designed for older, active adults, as well as senior adults who haven’t exercised in a long time. Pre-registration is required, and the fee for the seven-week class is $56.   To register, call 240-777-8085 or visit the Schweinhaut Center.


Revamped BRAC Website Provides Traffic Updates and Commuter Information

Montgomery County has redesigned its Base Realignment and Closure BRAC website to provide helpful transportation, traffic and other information to residents and employees traveling to or through Bethesda.

The closure of Walter Reed Army Medical Center means that more than 2,500 new jobs are being relocated to the campus of the National Naval Medical Center and visits are expected to double to nearly one million a year. 

Montgomery County has worked closely with the State of Maryland since the relocation was announced -- and with a very engaged Bethesda community -- to devise plans to address the oncoming impact.


A Card that Opens Many Doors

September is Library Card Sign-Up Month, and the American Library Association and Montgomery County Public Libraries (MCPL) want to make sure that all children, teens and adults in Montgomery County have the smartest card of all – a library card.

Customers with library cards can access books and magazines, DVDs, electronic books, test preparation materials, job hunting resources and electronic databases, and use the library computers with free Internet access – an especially important resource for families without Internet access at home.

For more information on how to sign up for a library card, visit any Montgomery County public library, call Ask-a-Librarian at 240-777-0001 or visit the library online at www.montgomerycountymd.gov/library


Benefit to Honor County’s Family Justice Center

Since it opened in 2009, the Montgomery County Family Justice Center in Rockville has served nearly 3,000 people from more than 100 countries of origin. The facility houses everything from pro bono legal support and law enforcement to emergency services, counseling and help with obtaining protective orders. Before the Center’s existence, victims would be referred to as many as 20 different agencies in separate locations throughout the County.

On Sunday October 2, the Montgomery County Family Justice Center Foundation will hold its 2nd annual Benefit at the Hilton Rockville, 1750 Rockville Pike, to support the vital work of the center which -- as part of an international network of more than 60 family-friendly centers -- provides victims of domestic violence and their children essential services all under one roof -- from care to court -- free of charge.

The event, chaired by Catherine Leggett, will honor the following award recipients:

Judge Katie O’Malley (Forerunner Award recipient) a former prosecutor who handled countless domestic violence and child sexual and physical abuse cases. She is currently Associate Judge of the District Court of Baltimore City and Maryland’s First Lady.

Judge Marielsa Bernard (Inspiring Leader Award recipient), an Associate Judge in the Circuit Court of Montgomery County. She chaired the Montgomery County Domestic Violence Coordinating Council from 2006-2009, guided its development and remains actively involved.

Judith Clark (Marilyn J. Praisner Founders Award recipient), founder and executive director of Women Who Care Ministries, a nonprofit organization that helps people in need through program areas including domestic violence; individuals overcoming homelessness and substance abuse; life skills workshops; and a girls mentoring group, among others.

GEICO Philanthropic Foundation (Corporate Legacy Award Recipient) is a committed community partner in Montgomery County and has an ongoing relationship of support and understanding for the needs of the Montgomery County Family Justice Center.

Mrs. Leggett also will announce the naming of the Family Room at the Family Justice Center as a tribute to the late Judge James Stephen McAuliffe Jr. and his commitment to reducing domestic violence.

For information about Benefit sponsorships, Benefit tickets, or ongoing contributions, e-mail mcfjcfoundation@yahoo.com, visit the Foundation’s website at www.mcfjcfoundation.org or contact Resa Levy, Foundation Executive Director, at 301-509-6832.


Customer Service Report Launched by Office of Cable and Broadband Services

The first edition of the County’s Office of Cable and Broadband Services e-report to customers has been launched. The online report allows the office to share data in a user-friendly format, highlight key developments and provide links to other items of interest.

The report is best viewed with Google Chrome, Explorer 8+, Firefox3.6+, or Safari 4+.

Download a printer friendly version of the complete report

Also, refer to the Report Glossary.

Feedback is invited. If there are questions about the statistics found within the report, contact Margie Williams, Franchise manager, at 240-777-3762 or email Marjorie.Williams@montgomerycountymd.gov.

To join the distribution list, provide feedback, or to request more information, e-mail cable.broadband@montgomerycountymd.gov.

CATEGORIES: Transportation , Seniors , BRAC , Worth Noting
POSTED: Thursday, September 08, 2011 | 3:00:00 AM |
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Last edited: 11/8/2010