County Leaf Collection Continues Through Mid-December       

The Montgomery County Department of Transportation Division of Highway Services (DHS) is conducting its annual vacuum collection of leaves in the southern part of the County now through mid-December.

The leaf vacuum collection district is bounded by I-495, I-270, the Rockville City limits, Norbeck, Bel Pre and Bonifant roads, Northwest Branch Park, and the District of Columbia and Prince George's County lines.

Residents should look for signs posted along the streets announcing the collection dates in their neighborhoods. Green signs indicate the first collection, and red signs indicate the second and final collection.

For more details, including do’s and don’ts regarding leaf collections, or to determine if your residence is within the boundaries of the leaf vacuum collection district, call 311, or go to the Department of Transportation’s website at www.montgomerycountymd.gov/mcdot  and click on “Highway Services.”  

Winter Guide for Recreation and Park Programs 

Registration is now open for the Department of Recreation winter programs and classes.  Swim lessons registration opens on December 8. Register in any one of four ways --by mail, fax, online or in person at the Recreation Department Administrative Offices at 4010 Randolph Rd., Silver Spring.

Copies of the Winter Guide are available at public libraries, as well as community, recreation, aquatic and senior centers around the County, or view it online at www.montgomerycountymd.gov/rec. For more information, call 240-777-6840.

Turn Over a New Leaf; Become a Master Gardener

Montgomery County residents interested in learning environmentally sound gardening practices and sharing the information with others can apply now to join the 2011 Montgomery County Master Gardener training program.

 The five-week course begins on January 25, 2011, and continues through March 4 (depending on possible snow days). Classes meet Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the University of Maryland Extension, Montgomery County office, located at the Agricultural History Farm Park, 18410 Muncaster Rd., Derwood.  The training fee is $290 and includes a training manual and other materials.

The requirements to become a Master Gardener are: attending a two-hour orientation, completing course work and a final exam, and performing 45 hours of volunteer service in the first year. In addition, participants must have access to a computer to download university fact sheets. Once qualified, Master Gardeners maintain their status annually by completing 10 hours of additional training and volunteering at least 25 hours.

Registration deadline is December 31. Class size is limited and filled on a first-come, first-served basis. To request an application or receive more enrollment information, call 590-2836.

Ride On Customers can Add Bus Passes to SmarTrip Cards

Ride On customers who purchase a 7-Day Bus Pass can now load the pass directly onto their SmarTrip® card. Bus passes on SmarTrip® are valid for seven consecutive days of unlimited travel, not only on Ride On, but also on Metrobus, ART, DASH, DC Circulator, CUE, Fairfax Connector and TheBus.

The pass is activated the first day a customer uses it, regardless of the day, and then is valid for seven consecutive days. As an added convenience, customers may load two bus passes at a time onto their SmarTrip® card.

The cost of the 7-Day Bus Pass on SmarTrip® is $15 for the regular bus pass and $7.50 for the senior/disabled bus pass, the same cost as paper bus passes. Bus passes cannot be loaded onto a SmarTrip® card that has a negative balance.

The last available paper bus pass expires Saturday, January 1, 2011.

Customers may add the 7-Day Bus Pass to their SmarTrip® card at any Metro sales office, regional transit store or select retail outlets. For a complete list of locations, visit www.wmata.com or call 202-637-7000.

Sign up for Electronic Holiday Trash/Recycling Collection Reminders

With the holiday season approaching, residents who receive County-provided pickup of refuse or recycling materials are reminded that they can sign up to receive electronic reminders about holiday collection schedules.

Signing up for the Division of Solid Waste Services' (DSWS) email notification list is as easy as visiting www.montgomerycountymd.gov/solidwaste.

Residents who have private contracts for trash collection, either individually or through their community/homeowners associations, should check with their collectors or associations about holiday schedules.

To determine if you have County-provided or private collection service, call the DSWS Customer Service Line at 240-777-6410 or use the online Collection Day Lookup at www.montgomerycountymd.gov/solidwaste; click on “Collection Services.”

Recreation Department Holding Holiday Food Drive

Between now and December 10, the Recreation Department is collecting canned and non-perishable food for the benefit of Manna Food Bank.  Customers and friends may drop off donations at any Montgomery County community, senior or aquatic center.   

Let’s help all those good people at Rec make the holidays brighter for many in our community.

Sunday Liquor Sales in County-Operated Stores on Trial Run

Montgomery County’s Department of Liquor Control’s (DLC) 24 County-owned liquor and wine stores are now open on Sundays from noon to 6 p.m. for a six-month trial period.

During this time, DLC will closely monitor costs, revenues, customer satisfaction and community response, and impacts on privately-owned and operated licensed businesses. Montgomery County currently allows Sunday alcohol sales in privately-owned beer and wine stores and on premise at licensed restaurants.

The Department of Liquor Control is a non-tax supported enterprise fund, and its operations generate net profits which are contributed to the County’s General Fund. Currently, it contributes $27 million in net profits to County coffers. The pilot program is not designed to generate any specific estimated amount of additional revenue but is being introduced more as a customer-friendly, consumer convenience initiative. Sundays are traditionally the second or third busiest retail shopping day, along with Fridays and Saturdays.

Currently, 38 states (including Maryland and Virginia) allow Sunday sales of distilled spirits.

For more information about the Department of Liquor Control, call 240-777-1917.

“Don’t Leave it Running” Police Remind Drivers

Each year as temperatures consistently get colder, many drivers want to start their vehicles to warm them up before driving in the morning. Or, they will leave them running while they run into a convenience store to quickly purchase a cup of coffee. 

However, detectives from the Police Auto Theft Section want to again remind local drivers not to leave their vehicles unattended while they are running/warming up.

The “Don’t Leave it Running” public safety campaign makes the public aware how quickly a vehicle can be stolen when it is left running and unattended.  The goal is to reduce the number of cars that are stolen in this fashion and to reduce related crimes.

Leaving a vehicle running and unattended is a violation of the State of Maryland Transportation Code, Article 21, Section 1101.  The penalty for this violation is a $70 fine and one point on the license.  If it contributes to an accident, the fine increases to $110 with three points on the license.  The Maryland Vehicle Law requires that a driver turn the engine off, lock the ignition, remove the keys and set the brake before leaving a car.  Also, if your vehicle is stolen with the use of a key, it could result in sanctions by the vehicle’s insurer.  These penalties can range from a premium increase to failure to renew the policy.

Israel-based Alvarion to Move North American HQ to Montgomery County

Montgomery County Executive Ike Leggett and Governor Martin O’Malley recently announced that Israel-based Alvarion, a global leader in the wireless broadband market, is moving its North American headquarters to Montgomery County from California and will create 25 new jobs by 2013.

 To assist the company with the relocation, the State and Montgomery County have agreed to provide $95,000 in conditional loans that are contingent on job creation at the new location, which is yet to be determined.

The Alvarion announcement comes on the heels of other recent successful Montgomery County company openings, expansions and attractions this year, most recently Choice Hotels’ relocation and expansion of its world headquarters to Rockville by 2013.

Others include the expansion of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission into a new 362,000 square-foot building in North Bethesda, the National Cancer Institute’s new 575,000 square-foot, $200 million satellite campus at the Shady Grove Life Sciences Center in Rockville and QIAGEN’s 117,000 square-foot North American headquarters and manufacturing facility expansion in Germantown. In addition there are EDF Inc.’s new 16,000 square-foot North American headquarters in Chevy Chase and International Baccalaureate’s new 36,000 square-foot Americas Global Center headquarters in Bethesda.

CATEGORIES: Worth Noting
POSTED AT: Monday, December 06, 2010 | 3:00:00 AM |
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