Since joining the Council, Nancy has led efforts to increase county funding for transportation projects locally and from the state. She has spearheaded increases in road resurfacing and tree maintenance and has actively supported transit initiatives. In 2004, Nancy co-sponsored a $7.5 million transportation package to buy more buses, add new bus routes, extend bus hours, reduce fares to encourage transit use, build a new garage at the Glenmont Metro, and accelerate planning for several new County roads.
Recognizing that congestion is the number one frustration for county residents, Nancy has been a tireless advocate for reducing congestion on local roads, such as Muncaster Mill and Norbeck Roads, by thousands of vehicles per day by building the Intercounty Connector along the route that has been endorsed by the County for over 40 years. In addition, Nancy:
- championed enhanced hiker and biker trail development and maintenance;
- co-sponsored the resolution to encourage the federal government to increase funding levels for METRO and to request the Governors of Maryland and Virginia and the Mayor of the District of Columbia to develop a long-range funding program for WMATA;
- fought against closing Beach Drive to Montgomery County commuters;
- authored the resolution to support building the ICC on the master-planned alignment, testifying on behalf of the Council to get the project going, ensure it is done in an environmentally sensitive manner, and include the planned bikeway; and
- initiatated the creation of the Infrastructure Financing Working Group to develop a strategy to raise substantial funds annually for funding our County's billion-dollar infrastructure needs, including new and expanded transit and road projects.
With housing prices spiraling out of control, Councilmember Floreen recognizes the critical need for a program that will produce and retain many more affordable housing units. Putting her Planning Board and regulatory experience to good use, Nancy authored the bulk of the Council’s legislation enhancing Montgomery County’s nationally recognized moderately priced dwelling unit (MPDU) housing program. She also co-sponsored the development of the workforce housing initiative. Councilmember Floreen championed the effort to dedicate a portion of the property tax to the Housing Initiative Fund, assuring that there will always be a $16 million pot of money to use to retain affordable housing units that might be lost and to leverage with developers to build affordable units. She also serves on the Habitat for Humanity of Montgomery County Board of Directors.
Nancy hosted a forum on senior transportation issues in July 2004 to illuminate the challenges and highlight best practices in this increasingly important area and pushed to gain the funds for the Senior Strategic Plan. She also successfully managed the Council’s review and adoption of legislation in fall 2004 to expand and improve taxi service. The councilwoman also serves on the Board of Directors of the Jewish Council on Aging.
As the former mayor of Garrett Park, Councilmember Floreen is extremely sensitive to the importance of community. She understands the need for areas to have a sense of place and the concerned interest residents have in protecting their neighborhood. One of Nancy’s major goals is to meet with as many community groups as possible to hear their concerns. Nancy understands the issues in Germantown are very different from the concerns in Bethesda or Silver Spring. Burtonsville has needs that differ from Clarksburg. And so, she works with neighborhoods across the county to find appropriate solutions to community needs.
In 2006, Nancy sponsored revisions to the Road Code which will make residential streets as well as roads in redeveloped commercial areas friendlier, safer for pedestrians and cyclists, and better for the environment. Under the new code, road construction must be context sensitive and must respect the needs of all users, not just motorists.
The councilwoman also introduced bill 28-05, which took effect on March 1, 2007 to address the problems of water draining onto neighboring properties from new construction or large renovations. The bill requires builders to use environmentally friendly methods to contain or convey water runoff, including rain gardens, green roofs, bioretention filters or natural buffer areas.
Councilmember Floreen understands that library services are part of our basic community infrastructure and has fought to ensure that our libries can meet the growing demands of all segments of the population. Nancy advocated to move up the construction of the flagship Rockville Library. She also called for the addition in 2005 of $2 million to the library system's operating budget for more books on the shelves and improved services.
PARKS AND THE ENVIRONMENT
As a former Parks Commissioner and long-time community advocate, Nancy has long been working to support the County’s many parks and green spaces. At Nancy’s request, the Planning Board formally surveyed the County and found that over 47 percent of the County is and will be preserved as “forever green." That area includes parkland, private areas subject to easements, properties acquired through the Legacy Open Space program, the Agricultural Reserve, and other areas.
Nancy was a co-sponsor of the County’s bill that eliminated smoking in bars and restaurants. In addition, she:
- champions the County commitment to green buildings and proposed the green buildings tax credit;
- Supported a regional commitment to wind power purchasing as an alternative energy source; and
- was the primary sponsor of a Council resolution to protect the County’s Agricultural Reserve by opposing a second Potomac River crossing and the “Techway.”
Keeping the County safe for pedestrians is one of Nancy’s top priorities. That is why every year she fights to keep sidewalk construction on schedule. Because sidewalks only function if they are clear, Nancy opposed limiting the County’s mandatory shoveling regulations. And, in recognition of residents’ good neighbor instincts, Nancy instituted the annual Golden Shovel awards to honor those who go above and beyond in helping their neighbors shovel out after a snowstorm. To date, 86 outstanding County residents, ranging in age from five to 78 years of age, have salted away these honors.
As a former PTA president, Nancy strongly supports quality public education in the County, both at the K-12 level and at our nationally recognized Montgomery College. Councilmember Floreen supported the expansion of all-day kindergarten to all County schools and co-sponsored the legislation to raise the recordation tax and require that those funds be reserved for school capital projects and educational technology for Montgomery College. In addition, she supported the legislation that created the school impact tax so developers will pay into a fund to build needed classrooms or schools.
Councilmember Floreen is particularly interested in increasing and improving technology training in our middle and high schools for college and non-college career paths, as well as encouraging outreach to girls and underrepresented groups in computer sciences early in their educational experience. That's why she initiated and chaired the Girls in Information Technology Task Force which developed recommendations for MCPS to implement for enhancing the preparation of young women entering IT related careers.
Traveling around the County to meet residents from Silver Spring to Poolesville and visiting civic association meetings from Friendship Heights to Damascus have been the most rewarding experiences of being a Councilmember.
As a member elected at-large to represent all residents of this terrific county, I want to visit all parts of the County, meet with residents on all manner of issues, and listen to concerns and problems. I would be delighted to visit with you or your group at any time. Please let my office know, and we will find a time that works. I look forward to hearing your concerns and to moving ahead – together --on all the issues we share.