The Fillmore Music Hall’s New Neighbor

The addition of a new hotel in downtown Silver Spring, planned as a next-door neighbor to the coming Fillmore Music Hall, will provide more visitor rooms in the Arts and Entertainment District -- and also more local jobs.

The Lee Development Group is negotiating with a national hotel developer to build an upscale, extended-stay inn that will connect to the Fillmore and be a significant part of a major new music hall-hotel-office development. Lee Development submited the plans for the 189-suite hotel and 224,000 square-feet of adjoining office and retail space to the Planning Commission earlier this month. Groundbreaking for the Fillmore Music Hall is expected to take place this fall.

National Cancer Institute to Move Operations to Johns Hopkins Campus in Shady Grove Life Sciences Center

The National Cancer Institute (NCI) will consolidate its operations in a new $200 million, 575,000 square-foot complex on the Montgomery County campus of Johns Hopkins University (JHU) in the Shady Grove Life Sciences Center at the southwest corner of the intersection of Medical Center Drive and Key West Avenue in Rockville. The new campus will accommodate approximately 2,100 NCI staff who will begin moving in 2013.  County Executive Ike Leggett said, "The NCI presence will also serve as a catalyst for the attraction and creation of thousands of new, high-quality jobs as the area transforms into a world-renowned innovation community with JHU and NCI at its core."

Renters’ Issues Addressed in Tenants Work Group Final Report Just Released

County Executive Ike Leggett recently received the report of the first-ever Montgomery County Tenants Work Group, a diverse group he appointed last year to formulate recommendations about actions that could assist the more than 80,000 County renter households in Montgomery County. The report also includes a set of specific recommendations designed to address renters' problems with affordability and security.

The 48-page report (pdf) includes the Survey on Tenant Satisfaction in Montgomery County commissioned by the Work Group to help in crafting their recommendations.

Local Non-Profits Affected by December Storm Can Apply for Loans

Private non-profit organizations in Montgomery County that experienced damage or loss during the severe winter storm that occurred December 18-20, 2009, may be eligible for low-interest loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA).  Non-profits may borrow up to $2 million to repair or replace damaged or destroyed real estate, machinery and equipment, inventory and other business assets. 

Non-profits applying for disaster loans may visit SBA’s secure website at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela/.  Disaster loan information and application forms are also available by calling the SBA’s Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 (800-877-8339 for the hearing impaired) Monday – Friday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., or emailing disastercustomerservice@sba.gov. Applications can also be downloaded from www.sba.gov/services/disasterassistance.

Scam Alert: Be Aware of Home Improvement Scam Artists

As the weather warms up, the final traces of snow melt, and Spring approaches, Montgomery County Police and the County’s Office of Consumer Protection remind residents to be on the lookout for unlicensed home improvement contractors known as “woodchucks” -- scam artists who generally target our elderly residents.

The "woodchucks" approach victims, tell them their trees need to be trimmed or removed, then pressure the victims into paying thousands of dollars to have a few tree branches cut.  The “woodchucks” continue their scam by telling the victims that their roofs are leaking in order to bilk victims out of thousands of dollars more.

For more information regarding home improvement jobs and hiring a contractor, contact the Office of Consumer Protection at 240-777-3636 or go to www.montgomerycountymd.gov/consumer.

March Brings Still Melting Snows and Recognition of Long Hours and Hard Work

February isn’t a bad month…after all, it has Valentine’s Day and the Presidents’ Day Holiday.  However, February 2010 will be one that area residents will long remember, but for the wrong reasons.  Two major snow storms inundated our area with record snowfalls that brought daily services to a halt.

 While many of us watched the storm unfold from home, the County’s Department of Transportation’s Division of Highway Services (DHS) staff worked 18 straight days, 24 hours a day, to combat the storms, with only one break so staff could visit with their families on Valentine’s Day.

During full mobilization, DHS crews eat and sleep at the depots or even in their trucks and work non-stop until the roads are once again passable.  What makes their efforts even more exceptional this winter is the fact that DHS has fully mobilized for 13 winter storm events between December 5 and February 25, including working Christmas Day and New Year’s Eve.   

For the February storms, DHS commandeered resources throughout the region, deploying 1,200 pieces of equipment – compared to 550 for the December storm – to clear 900 miles of primary and secondary routes and 4,128 lane miles of residential roads.  

Crews rescued stranded motorists, fire trucks, and PEPCO crews, cleared paths to power lines so PEPCO could restore power, caretakers could get to disabled residents or residents could get medical assistance.  Hats off to the DHS staff for long hours and extraordinary efforts to aid the public in a challenging, difficult situation.

It’s Not Too Late to Prevent H1N1 Influenza; FREE Vaccination Clinics Scheduled

Montgomery County health officials remind residents that FREE H1N1 vaccinations are available at locations throughout Montgomery County during March and April.  The United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the World Health Organization (WHO), and recent news reports, have discussed the possibility of a third and fourth wave of illness, so vaccination is an important step that everyone can take to protect themselves and their families.

Clinics are open to all County residents, and both nasal spray and injectable vaccine will be available.  Make appointments for FREE H1N1 vaccinations at www.montgomerycountymd.gov/h1n1flu or call the Immunization Program Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at 240-777-1050. 

Leggett Signs Executive Order on Language Access

County Executive Ike Leggett has signed an Executive Order (Press Release) on Language Access that will ensure consistently high quality services for residents with limited English proficiency.  Leggett was joined at the signing by County Council President Nancy Floreen, Secretary of Maryland’s Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation Alex Sanchez, Deputy Assistant Attorney General in the U.S. Office of Civil Rights Leon Rodriguez and community leaders.

The Executive Order will improve accountability for all Executive Branch departments and offices in an effort to ensure compliance with federal guidelines on language access, institutionalize effective practices and encourage cross-agency coordination with other public institutions in the County.  The new Executive Order will build upon Montgomery County’s current Limited English Proficiency (LEP) policy developed in 2003.  With the signing of this order, Leggett hopes to improve staff awareness and competency and ensure access to government services for all communities throughout Montgomery County.

For more information about the Executive Order or the County’s Limited English Proficiency policy, call Lily Qi at 240-777-2524.

Marriott Spirit to Serve Award Nominations Due March 26

Volunteers play a critical role in supporting nonprofit, government and faith communities that serve Montgomery County residents.  Each year, through the prestigious Marriott Spirit to Serve Community Service Awards, the Montgomery

County Volunteer Center, under the Offices of the County Executive, honors remarkable individuals, groups and schools that have significantly contributed to the community. 

Nominations for the 2010 awards are due by March 26.  Nomination forms and directions for submission are available on the Volunteer Center’s website, www.montgomerycountymd.gov/volunteer

e-Biz Update: An Online Rundown on Montgomery County’s Business Community

If you’re looking for timely information on news makers, upcoming events and other interesting facts and items about Montgomery County’s business community, then you need to see e-Biz Update, the bi-weekly newsletter from the County’s Department of Economic Development.

What’s Coming Up at Montgomery County Public Libraries?

Take a look at the new Spring edition of “Check Us Out” which has a variety of information on programs and events at our public libraries during March, April and May.

Pick up a copy at any Montgomery County Public Libraries (MCPL) branch or find the online copy on the MCPL website.

Commission for Women’s March Newsletter Online

The March issue of the Montgomery County Commission for Women’s newsletter is now online at www.montgomerycountymd.gov/cfw.  Included are articles on free tax help, cervical cancer awareness and the benefits of the Lilly Ledbetter Pay Equity Act. There is a Calendar of Events that contains information on upcoming workshops presented by the Commission’s Counseling and Career Center.


CATEGORIES: Worth Noting
POSTED AT: Tuesday, March 09, 2010 | 2:00:00 PM |
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