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Cuts on Top of Cuts

Putting the County’s fiscal house in order was job one when County Executive Ike Leggett took office.  And, due to the economic downturn, that work continues.

Since March 15, when the Executive released his Fiscal Year 2011 Recommended Operating Budget that closed an estimated $780 million gap, the County has received more bad news from the State concerning declining tax revenues due to the County. Furthermore, warning signs from those who rate County bonds require the Executive to increase the County’s reserve for the coming year to six percent from the five percent originally projected.

All told, these factors mean an additional gap of nearly $200 million that must be closed for the remainder of this year and the next.

In late April, Leggett sent to the County Council additional recommendations (pdf) to close this new gap.

Click here to see more on the release of the County Executive's recommended budget on March 15.

All told, the nearly $1 billion gap for FY2011 is filled mostly -- 83% -- by spending reductions and other changes. The remainder is mainly an increase in the County’s fuel energy tax that would raise, according to present calculations, the average residential household bill by $8 a month and the average business by $290 a month. Leggett recommended that the increase in the energy tax sunset at the end of FY12. 

CATEGORIES: Budget
POSTED: Friday, April 30, 2010 | 7:00:00 AM |

Ash Residue Recycling Proposed

Ash residue from the County’s Resource Recovery Facility (RRF/waste-to-energy plant) would be reused and recycled and the recycling of construction and demolition (C&D) debris would be increased under an amendment to the County’s waste transportation and disposal contract proposed by Montgomery County Executive Ike Leggett.  The proposed amendment has been sent to the County Council which must vote on any changes to the contract.

The ash will be screened into several sizes and used as road base in modern, lined landfill cells and as alternate daily cover to cover trash in landfills.  The processed ash replaces virgin materials such as stone and soil that would have to be imported, and, in some cases, mined, from other locations.  This will mean a reduction of fuel use and associated air emissions due to less energy being used to develop road base materials, fewer trucking miles required and reduced construction of additional landfill space. Read more. 

CATEGORIES: Environmental
POSTED: Friday, April 30, 2010 | 6:00:00 AM |

Moving Up the Clean Energy Ladder

 

 

Montgomery County Executive Ike Leggett and County Councilmember George Leventhal have announced that the Montgomery County Clean Energy Buyers Group, consisting of County jurisdictions and agencies, is now one of the largest green power purchasers in the nation after increasing its annual green power purchase to 161 million kilowatt-hours (kWh).

The group increased its ranking to number four on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Top 20 Local Government list and Number 22 on their National Top 50 list.  Montgomery County recently boosted its purchase of green energy to 30 percent of its electricity use, going well beyond its 2010 goal of 20 percent. 

The Buyers Group consists of Montgomery County Government, Montgomery County Public Schools, Montgomery College and the Maryland-National Park and Planning Commission.  Also participating are the City of College Park, Chevy Chase Village, Chevy Chase Village Section 5, City of Gaithersburg, City of Rockville, City of Takoma Park, Town of Glen Echo, Town of Kensington, Town of Laytonsville and Town of Somerset.

Collectively, the group is purchasing renewable energy certificates (RECs) from NextEra Energy Resources and Renewable Choice. Also known as green tags, RECs help offset or cancel out the impacts of the pollution created through a consumer’s electricity generation.  Green power is electricity generated from environmentally preferable renewable resources, such as wind, solar, geothermal, biogas, biomass and low-impact hydro.  Read more.

CATEGORIES: Economy , County Executive , County Council
POSTED: Friday, April 30, 2010 | 5:00:00 AM |

Serious Crime Down for 2009

 Montgomery County Police (MCPD) have announced that the Part I (serious) crime statistics for the 2009 calendar year show a 6.8% decrease in total Part I reported crime within the County.

Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) statistics for Part I year-end 2009, compared to the same period in 2008, show:

Murder:  decreased by 38.1%     (from 21 to 13)
Rape:    decreased by 5.3%       (from 131 to 124)
Robbery:     decreased by 9.8%       (from 1,100 to 992)
Aggravated Assault: increased by 8.3%        (from 835 to 904)
Burglary:  decreased by 16.4%     (from 3,603 to 3,011)
Larceny:   decreased by 3.5%       (from 19,027 to 18,356)
Auto Theft:   decreased by 23.3%     (from 2,258 to 1,732)

The only Part I crime category to increase in 2009 was aggravated assault which rose by 8.3% (from 835 to 904). In this category, assault victims are counted, not incidents. So, any single aggravated assault incident with more than one victim is counted for each of the victims.  Domestic assaults counted for 42.9% of all assaults.  Assaults against police officers accounted for 2.4% of all aggravated assaults.

Police Chief J. Thomas Manger said while he was encouraged by the drop in Part I crime numbers, “I know that there are a multitude of factors that contribute to the amount of crime that goes on in a particular area.  MCPD has been doing a better job in recent years at deploying our resources where they are needed the most and can do the most good.  We continue to rely on our community members to timely report to police suspicious persons and suspicious activities; and to provide tip information to advance our investigations.”

CATEGORIES: Public Safety
POSTED: Friday, April 30, 2010 | 4:00:00 AM |

Leggett Encourages Council, Planning Board to Focus on White Oak Plan

With the Montgomery County Biosciences Task Force laying a strategy for growing the biosciences industry, the Council has now taken a major step toward leading the County into the next 30 years of growing knowledge-based jobs and developing communities of innovation.  The Great Seneca Sciences Corridor Master Plan provides for a place for science in the County.  But, County Executive Ike Leggett has reminded the Council this area cannot be the only place. 

In a recent letter to the Council, Leggett has urged them to “…now link the Great Seneca Sciences Corridor to other areas of the County with complementary science-based assets.  I am speaking of the White Oak planning area with the FDA’s Federal Research Campus, the Adventist Hospital campus, and the planned East County Science and Technology Center. 

“I am writing to encourage the Council and the Planning Board to modify the Planning Board’s workplan to move the White Oak Plan up to be the next priority for the Planning Board in its master plan revisions. By advancing this plan, we will send a clear message that Montgomery County is a premiere place to locate and develop communities of innovation where companies can locate near the federal assets that govern their work. The White Oak area can also provide growth capacity with opportunities for robust collaboration and ready access to an ever-developing workforce.

“By focusing on the White Oak Plan now – before the ICC is completed – we can make very clear that East to West, with NIH in the core, Montgomery County is the place for knowledge-based jobs and opportunities.” 

CATEGORIES: Economy , County Executive
POSTED: Friday, April 30, 2010 | 3:00:00 AM |

WORTH NOTING

 Fire and Rescue Service Teams with Washington Freedom to Promote Safety 

 

The County's Fire and Rescue Service (MCFRS) was featured as part of First Responders Night at a recent Washington Freedom soccer game at the Germantown Sportsplex and got a chance to promote fire safety to the many families attending the game. Kids had a chance to see some trucks and meet fire fighters. Two of the Freedom players -- Allie Long (left) and Christie Welsh  -- stopped by Fire Station 6 at 6600 Wisconsin Ave. in Bethesda to help DFRS promote their Spring into Summer Safely Campaign. These seasoned athletes are going the extra mile to ensure that the community also has what it takes to be fire safe -- working smoke alarms. 

Montgomery County Fire Rescue Service has a new Safety in Our Neighborhood portal, so residents are reminded to change their web browser's bookmarks/favorites to http://montgomerycountymd.gov/content/frs-safe.  


A Wonderful Opportunity for Middle School Girls

Computer camp programs specially designed for girls in grades six to eight are being offered this summer at three locations by Montgomery College in partnership with the Montgomery County Commission for Women.  All camps will run from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. and are staffed by MCPS faculty.

The Gurl Power Web Design Camps will be held at the Takoma Park/Silver Spring Campus from June 21 to July 2 and at the Germantown Campus from July 6 to 16.  Students will create cool digital graphics and design their own website while using their creativity and sense of style. The two-week camp will include sports, arts and crafts, and other exciting events to see how technology is used in interesting ways, as well as meeting with invited guests to explore technology careers. Basic computer familiarity is required.

The Computer Programming Camp will be held from July 19 to 30 at the Rockville Campus. Students will learn what it takes to write a computer program through this camp designed to teach the fundamentals of programming in a fun environment with cool projects to try out your new programming skills. The camp will focus on Visual Basic programming language and present programming logic and problem solving. Experience in Windows, on or above grade-level math, is required. 

For information on costs and scholarship assistance and to access copies of all materials and forms, visit the Commission’s website at www.montgomerycountymd.gov/cfw or call (240) 777-8330.  The materials and forms may be duplicated as needed. 


Leading International Energy Company, EDF Inc., to Locate North American Headquarters in County

The Montgomery County Department of Economic Development has announced that EDF Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of EDF International S.A. of France, has selected Montgomery County for its new North American headquarters.

EDF Inc. signed a 10-year lease for 16,000 square feet at Wisconsin Place, 5404 Wisconsin Ave., in Chevy Chase. Approximately 25 employees will work from the new facility when it opens later this year.

Operating in more than 20 countries worldwide, the EDF Group is recognized as a leading expert in low-carbon energy options, including nuclear, wind, hydro and solar power. The Group is involved in supplying energy and services to approximately 38 million customers worldwide.


QIAGEN to Expand North American HQ in Germantown

QIAGEN Inc. will expand its North American headquarters in Germantown, adding 117,000 square feet of new manufacturing space and office space to accommodate at least 90 new, fulltime jobs by 2015.  The company expects to invest approximately $52 million in the project.

Groundbreaking for the expansion is anticipated this fall, with completion expected in 2012.  The project will increase square footage at QIAGEN’s Germantown campus from 230,000 347,000. Read more.


Spring Cleaning?  Here’s Where to Take Your “Stuff”

The Montgomery County Police Department (MCPD), in conjunction with the department’s Victim Assistance Unit, is seeking donations for its annual Yard Sale on May 15 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Rockville Elks Lodge #15 at 5 Taft Ct., off E. Gude Dr. Money raised will be used to provide holiday gifts for needy crime victims’ families and other emergency work of the unit.

Donations of household goods, books, clothing, toys, small furniture, etc. will be accepted from May 3 through 13.

To donate items or to receive more information, contact your district station’s victim assistant or call Unit Director Ellen Alexander at 240-773-5626.


Inviting Feedback: Mid-County Regional Services Center Launches Community Blogs

To encourage and strengthen community ties and participation, the Mid-County Regional Services Center, located in Wheaton, recently launched three new blogs that allow residents to reflect, share opinions and discuss various topics.    

For more information, call 240-777-8103 or visit the Mid-County Regional Service Center’s website at www.montgomerycountymd.gov/midcounty.


County Seeks Foster and Adoptive Parents

Touch a child’s heart by becoming a foster or adoptive parent for Montgomery County children. 

Montgomery County’s Child Welfare Services, part of the Department of Health and Human Services, is seeking individuals and families who can open their homes and hearts to teenagers, teenage parents and their children, children with special needs and sibling groups. There are currently more than 500 children living in foster care homes in Montgomery County, and there is an ongoing need for homes for these children.

For information on becoming a foster or adoptive parent, call 240-777-1664 or go to www.montgomerycountymd.gov/kidsneedyou


How to Report a Vacant Property

Vacant properties pose a number of potential problems for our neighborhoods, including blight, graffiti, rodents and crime.   If you suspect or know that a property in your neighborhood is vacant and is not properly monitored and/or maintained by the owner or a representative of the owner, such as a realtor, you can assist the Department of Housing and Community Affairs (DHCA) by completing and submitting the online vacancy reporting form at www.montgomerycountymd.gov/hce.  Any and all information about the identity of the person or persons reporting a vacant property can be kept confidential, when requested.

Residents can check the status of a property on  the DHCA home page -- click on the “Resource Center” link, then click on “eProperty Data Mining,” www.montgomerycountymd.gov/apps/DHCA/pdm_online/pdmfull.asp to obtain property information from seven different sources by entering a street number and name.

CATEGORIES: Worth Noting
POSTED: Friday, April 30, 2010 | 2:00:00 AM |

MARK YOUR CALENDAR

Sunday, May 2, noon to 4 p.m. – Eighth Annual KidFest. A free, fun-filled afternoon of interactive recreational activities and events for children at the East County Community Center, 3310 Gateshead Manor Way, Silver Spring. Sponsored by the Department of Recreation, the festival will feature games and activities, clowns, finger and face painting and live entertainment. Food available for purchase. Call 240-777-6821, or visit the Recreation Department website at www.montgomerycountymd.gov/rec.

Tuesday, May 4, 6:30 to 9 p.m. –  Free Forum on Civil Rights in Post 9/11 World. Executive Office Building, Lobby Level Auditorium, 101 Monroe St., Rockville. Residents, students, government leaders and area civil rights organizations are encouraged to attend. Sponsored by Montgomery County’s Office of Human Rights, Commission on Hate/Violence and the Commission on Human Rights. Call the Office of Human Rights at 240-777-8450.

Tuesday, May 4, 7:30 p.m. -- Frank Lloyd Wright’s granddaughter discusses her book about “…Love and Marriage During the Depression” at the Silver Spring Library, 8901 Colesville Rd. Elizabeth Wright, who grew up in the Silver Spring and Bethesda area discovered her parents’ letters while clearing out their Bethesda home, which was designed by her grandfather. She found the letters, written when they were trying to create a financially stable marriage in the midst of terrible economic conditions, to be witty, sassy and poignant. The book also contains the family background which sets the scene for the romance. Sponsored by Friends of the Library, Silver Spring Chapter as part of its 12-year-old Speaker Series. Copies of the book will be available for sale, and light refreshments will be served. Contact the Silver Spring Library at 240-773-9420.

Wednesday, May 12, Noon-1 p.m. -- Online chat with CountyExecutive Ike Leggett. This online interactive forum allows residents in Montgomery County to send questions directly to the County Executive. You may submit questions anytime. Answered questions will be available at the beginning of the live session and selected questions will be answered during the scheduled discussion time.

CATEGORIES: Calendar
POSTED: Friday, April 30, 2010 | 1:00:00 AM |

WORTH NOTING

Residents Can Get Free Deck Inspections in May

This year during Building Safety Month – May 3 through 31 -- the Department of Permitting Services will provide free deck maintenance inspections for single-family detached homes, townhouses and duplex dwellings.

The inspections are available to all Montgomery County residents – except those in the cities of Rockville and Gaithersburg.  The inspection will include a checklist for homeowners to help them maintain safe and sound structures. Homeowners will be contacted before the inspection is performed.  All requests will be honored as the inspectors’ workloads permit.

Residents interested in scheduling a deck inspection should contact the Department of Permitting Services, during May, at 240-777-6300, by fax at 240-777-6258 or by email at dps@montgomerycountymd.gov.  


Ground Broken for New Community Recreation Center

Ground has been broken for the new White Oak Community Recreation Center at 1700 April Lane, Silver Spring. The 50,000-square-foot center will house a gymnasium, social hall, lounge, kitchen, vending space, and exercise, game, pottery/kiln, art/crafts and conference rooms.  Outside facilities include two playgrounds, two multi-purpose courts, skate park area and one multipurpose field.  Joining the County Executive at the ceremony were County Council members, other local elected officials, the directors of Recreation, Parks and General Services, and representatives of the community and the Recreation Advisory Board.


Warmer Weather Brings Out Highway Services’ Paving and Concrete Repair Crews

The Department of Transportation’s pavement preservation program is using long-term strategies to preserve and enhance the County’s transportation infrastructure. Roadways rated as fair or worse are receiving attention now that the warmer weather allows crews to use hot mix asphalt. 

Work on the following residential neighborhoods is scheduled to begin this spring: Glenview, Silver Spring; Regency Estates, Potomac; Rosemont and Walnut Hill, Gaithersburg; and Goshen Hunt, Damascus.

A number of arterial roads will be resurfaced this spring using either hot mix asphalt or a micro surface process.

In addition to work in neighborhoods and on arterial roads, DOT will repair sidewalks and curbs in the Connecticut Avenue Estates neighborhood, Rockville, including removing and replacing damaged sidewalks and ensuring that curb ramps are accessible to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

While DOT's Division of Highway Services (DHS) is in the neighborhood, residents can take advantage of the competitive price offered by the County to replace concrete driveway aprons (the portion of the driveway that is within the public right-of-way) and concrete lead walks (the sidewalk from the edge of the road to a homeowner’s property line). 

For more information on repairs to arterial roads, or questions about other repair projects, email DHS at mcdot.highway@montgomerycountymd.gov or call 240-777-6000.


Caution Advised for Drivers, Pedestrians in Road Work Areas

 

Residents are reminded that while repair work is underway on local roadways, personnel and construction vehicles will be moving around the site.  Construction materials may also be stored in the area.

Please use caution when walking or driving through the construction zone.  Children may be attracted to the noise and machinery, so we ask that you please keep all children under close supervision at all times, even after the work is completed for the day. Also, follow the direction of flaggers and temporary signs and traffic control devices. 

For a listing of selected construction or maintenance activities affecting traffic, bike and pedestrian travel, visit MCDOT's website


Police Enhance Safety Efforts During Prom Season

The Department of Police has begun its annual Prom Season Task Force.  The goal of the Task Force is to reduce the number of alcohol-related incidents and collisions during a time when young people may be unlawfully consuming alcohol.

The Prom Season Task Force will be conducted Wednesdays through Saturdays running through June 5.  Officers will focus on education and enforcement through: compliance checks and Cops in Shops to combat alcohol sales to minors; saturation patrols in the area near and around prom locations and locations where alcohol is sold; sobriety checkpoints; Parents Who Host Lose the Most programs to encourage safe and substance-free events at private homes; training limousine drivers, emphasizing the importance of a zero tolerance policy toward underage drinking; and school assemblies and programs to emphasize the dangers of impaired driving.


County to Form Animal Response Team

Volunteers are needed to become part of the County Animal Response Team (CART) that addresses emergency animal sheltering during an evacuation event.  An informational session has been scheduled for Thursday, May 6 at 7 p.m., in the Council Office Building, First Floor Auditorium, 100 Maryland Ave., Rockville.  Prospective volunteers will receive an overview of the purpose, scope and intent of the team and a summary of CART’s areas of responsibility. 

Creation of the CART is the result of the County’s Offices of Emergency Management and Homeland Security and the Animal Services Division in the Police Department working together to plan for the needs of domestic pets in the event of a large-scale emergency situation that includes evacuation of residents to an emergency shelter.            

For more information, or to RSVP for the May 6 meeting, email sandy.dornsife@montgomerycountymd.gov

CATEGORIES: Worth Noting
POSTED: Thursday, April 29, 2010 | 1:00:00 AM |

Green Economy Task Force Submits Recommendations to Leggett

Montgomery County Executive Ike Leggett recently received the recommendations of the Green Economy Task Force from Chair Dick Wegman.  The task force was established last year by Leggett to help the County create opportunities for new and existing ‘green’ businesses, spur innovation, increase employment and develop next generation technologies.

The report was presented to Leggett at the Rockville Ice Arena, which will soon host Maryland's largest roof-mounted solar panel system, some 2,600 panels with a capacity of about 701 kilowatts. The Executive was joined by Montgomery County Councilmember and Ex-Officio Task Force Member Roger Berliner and Montgomery County Council President Nancy Floreen

To access the full report, with its 19 recommendations, visit the County’s website

CATEGORIES: Economy
POSTED: Wednesday, April 07, 2010 | 6:00:00 PM |

A Look at Locations of Emergency Medical Services Fees Around the Area

Three years ago, County Executive Ike Leggett recommended adoption of an Emergency Medical Services transport fee which would bill insurance companies, Medicare or Medicaid for ambulance transports and raise millions for County Fire and Rescue – at no out-of-pocket cost to County residents. The failure to approve the fee has cost the County tens of millions of dollars.  Meanwhile, other jurisdictions in the metropolitan area have used these resources to improve service and save lives. And, there’s no evidence from any of them of any adverse effects. That tells you something.

The County Executive has included the fee as part of his FY11 Recommended Operating Budget. Take a look at the surrounding counties that have an EMS fee in place.

  • EMS Fees in Maryland Jurisdictions (pdf)
  • EMS Fees in Virginia Jurisdictions (pdf)
  • EMS Fees in the National Capital Region (NCR) Jurisdictions (pdf)

For complete information about the benefits of the EMS fee to Montgomery County, visit EMS website, or download brochure (pdf).

CATEGORIES: Public Safety , Transportation
POSTED: Wednesday, April 07, 2010 | 5:00:00 PM |

Contributions of Military Memorabilia, Mementos Sought for Displays Honoring Local Veterans

To honor the dedication and memory of local service men and women, the Montgomery County Commission on Veterans Affairs, in partnership with Montgomery County Public Libraries (MCPL), is seeking military memorabilia/mementos from local armed services members, veterans and their families to be featured in special displays that will appear in a number of Montgomery County Public Libraries’ branches during May and November.

Items loaned for display could include uniforms, dog tags, photos, letters, medals, or the type of personal items often left at the Vietnam Memorial. 

Materials to be loaned for the May/Memorial Day displays should be taken -- no later than Friday, April 16 -- to the Broome School (first floor/use blue awning entrance) at 751 Twinbrook Parkway, Rockville, Monday through Thursday from 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Get details about how to prepare and turn in submissions and arrange for pick-up and return of the items, plus contact information.   (see press release or flyer in pdf format)

CATEGORIES: Community Forum
POSTED: Wednesday, April 07, 2010 | 4:00:00 PM |

WORTH NOTING

Census Reminder: It’s Not Too Late to Fill Out Your Form

If you haven’t taken a moment to complete the Census form you recently received in the mail, it’s not too late to be counted and help determine Montgomery County’s future for the next 10 years. The County will lose thousands of federal dollars for essential services for every resident who isn’t counted.

However, if you’re one of the nearly 70 percent of Montgomery County residents who have already returned their Census forms, you can still help the cause by reminding family members, friends and neighbors to make sure they fill out and return their forms.

If you or someone you know has not received a Census form, call 1-866-872-6868 between April 12 and 21 for a replacement form. For those who have not mailed their completed form back to the Census by the end of April, Census enumerators will be visiting starting on May 1. You can find information on how to get help or find a Questionnaire Assistance Center at: http://www.montgomerycountymd.gov/census.  


 First Signs on Silver Spring Heritage Trail  to be“Unveiled”

Link to the map in pdf format.

The first six signs along the new Silver Spring Heritage Trail, the first official Main Street Heritage Trail in Montgomery County, will be unveiled at a special ceremony on Saturday, April 17 at 1 p.m., beginning at 8435 Georgia Ave. (the current Silver Spring Regional Services Center).

Local elected officials, including County Executive Ike Leggett and 5th District Councilmember Valerie Ervin, and community representatives will join descendants of the original early 1900s pioneers and settlers as they stroll from sign to sign, removing the covers.

The project is a joint endeavor between the County Executive's Office, the County Council, the Silver Spring Regional Services Center, the Silver Spring Historical Society and the Montgomery County Historic Preservation Commission staff. The Silver Spring Heritage Trail is one of the mitigations recommended by the Maryland Historical Trust following demolition of  the historic 1927 Silver Spring National Guard Armory 12 years ago to make way for the redevelopment of Downtown Silver Spring.

For more about the trail, email the Silver Spring Historical Society at sshistory@yahoo.com.


It’s Still Pothole Season

County roads have endured a season of freezing and thawing in addition to three major blizzards.  That stress results in pavement cracks and those annoying potholes.  However, Highway Services crews and contractors will be working all spring and summer making needed repairs. Four pothole patching trucks work every day to make permanent repairs. Highway’s goal is to fix any pothole 36 hours after the time it was reported. If you encounter a pothole, report it to the County Department of Transportation’s Customer Service Center at 240-777-6000 or advise them by email.  Include details about the exact location -- the street address nearest the pothole or a landmark.  You can also submit a pothole’s location electronically at montgomerycountymd.gov/Potholes.      


WSSC Seeks Volunteers to Advise on Customer Issues

The Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission is looking for six volunteers from Montgomery County for its Customer Advisory Board (CAB).  Since 1989, the CAB has been advising WSSC about customer-related policies and issues from metering to watershed management, from environmental education to billing issues. 

To be eligible to serve on the Customer Advisory Board, you must be a residential customer of WSSC and cannot work for WSSC or be a WSSC contractor.

For more information, including meeting details and schedules, call Kim Knox at 301-206-8233 or email kknox@wsscwater.com


Wegmans is Coming to Germantown

Montgomery County's first Wegmans Food Markets Inc. is set to anchor The Shops at Seneca Meadows, a 156-acre mixed-use project in Germantown at the corner of Observation Drive and Seneca Meadows. Read more in Economic Development’s e-Biz Update.


Volunteers Needed to Lead Bone Builders Classes in Wheaton

Volunteers are needed in the Wheaton area to lead a new Bone Builders class that provides information on how to prevent and slow the development of osteoporosis. 

The free, one-hour classes, sponsored by Montgomery County’s Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) and Aging and Disability Services, include balance and weight training.  Classes are held twice a week during daytime hours.

Volunteer leaders receive a full day of free training and ongoing supervision by a master trainer.

For more information, contact Shawn Brennan, program manager for Senior Health Promotion, at 240-777-1350 or shawn.brennan@montgomerycountymd.gov.     


Credit Card Parking Proves Popular

Just a reminder: The Parking Lot Districts’ five garages with pay-on-foot or pay-by-space revenue collection systems accept credit cards as a means of payment. Many parkers have discovered the convenience of using credit cards since the program took effect in mid-FY09.  Take a look at the recent statistics from each district.

Bethesda Parking Lot District:

  • Woodmont Corner Garage - 1,108 spaces - 56% of transactions by credit card

Silver Spring Parking Lot District:

  • Cameron Street Garage - 1,383 spaces - 43% of transactions by credit card
  • Wayne Ave Garage - 1,694 spaces - 33% of transactions by credit card 
  • Town Square Garage - 1,273 spaces - 25% of transactions by credit card

Wheaton Parking Lot District:

  • Amherst Garage - 628 spaces - 40% of transactions by credit card

For more information on public parking options in the County, visit the Division of Parking Management's website, or call MCDOT's Customer Service Center at 240-777-6000.


Paper Cuts – the Good Kind

There are bad paper cuts – the kind we get on our fingers that sting like the dickens -- then there are good paper cuts like the ones happening throughout Montgomery County government.

The County’s paper reduction act was officially implemented in September 2009. The goal was to cut paper use roughly 15% in a year, saving roughly $1 million dollars. Departments were told to achieve 15% cost savings in their paper/printing budget for the rest of the fiscal year.  Because this program began in Sept (FY10), a portion of this $1M savings will come in the first quarter of FY11.  Review the departments’ figures (pdf).

CATEGORIES: Worth Noting
POSTED: Wednesday, April 07, 2010 | 3:00:00 PM |

MAKING NEWS

Montgomery County Recognized for Technology Excellence

The Public Technology Institute (PTI) has recognized Montgomery County with one of its 2009/2010 Technology Solutions Awards for the entry in the Geographic Information Systems (GIS) category  (populations greater than 750,000) entitled Mapping School Absenteeism for Managing H1N1 Influenza Outbreak. 

Developed by the County’s Department of Technology Services (DTS) and Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), the application provides DHHS’ Public Health Emergency Planning and Response team with useful geographic information and improves Public Health staff efficiency in obtaining information about absenteeism in schools during the H1N1 influenza pandemic.

PTI is a national, non-profit research and development organization that advances the use of technology to improve the management and delivery of services to residents. The annual competition recognizes PTI member local governments that have used technology innovations to improve service delivery, increase performance and reduce operating costs or create new revenue opportunities

For a complete listing of award winners, visit: http://www.pti.org/index.php/ptiee1/more/601/ .


Montgomery County Named Tree City USA

For the 15th year, Montgomery County has been named a Tree City USA by the Arbor Day Foundation in honor of its commitment to community forestry.

Trees promote healthier communities by filtering air and removing dust and other particles; moderating climate; conserving water; providing habitat for wildlife; and reducing heat island effects in urban areas. 

The Tree City USA program is sponsored by the Arbor Day Foundation in cooperation with the National Association of State Foresters and the United States Department of Agriculture Forest Service. 

For more information about the Arbor Day Foundation, go to www.arborday.org


Department of Correction and Rehabilitation Partnership Receives National Recognition

The Prison Outreach Ministry/Welcome Home Reentry program, which receives County funding for its partnership with the Pre-Release and Reentry Services Division in the County’s Department of Correction and Rehabilitation (DOCR), recently received the Migdalia “Miggie” Baerga-Buffler Award from the Defendant/Offender Workforce Development Conference.

The award recognizes a faith- or community-based organization that promotes offender workforce development through partnerships with local, state or federal agencies, and advocates for policies and practices that support successful reentry. Since 2006, the Prison Outreach Ministry/Welcome Home Reentry Program has partnered with DOCR’s Pre-Release and Reentry Services Division to provide mentors who help hundreds of clients at the Pre-Release Center in preparing for, finding and securing jobs. Read more.  

CATEGORIES: MAKING NEWS
POSTED: Wednesday, April 07, 2010 | 2:00:00 PM |

MARK YOUR CALENDARS

April 11-17 – National Library Week 2010 – “Communities thrive @ your library.” A week designated for the celebration and appreciation of the contributions that libraries and librarians make to our communities and to our lives. For activities/programs scheduled at your local library in April and May, visit Check Us Out! on the Montgomery County Public Libraries’ website.   

Thursday, April 15, 2-3:15 p.m. -- “The Advancing Roles of Women in the Criminal Justice Field” featuring Chief Cathy Lanier of the DC Metropolitan Police Department and Chief Deputy Attorney General of Maryland Kay Winfree who will  share their experiences. Q&A period will follow, plus light refreshments. Montgomery College, Music Building Recital Hall, Rockville Campus. For disability accommodations, call 240-567-7446.

 

CATEGORIES: Calendar
POSTED: Wednesday, April 07, 2010 | 1:00:00 PM |
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Last edited: 11/8/2010