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Montgomery County Council committee highlights for Monday, March 6

For Immediate Release: Friday, March 3, 2017

Montgomery Council committee to

discuss ways to improve service delivery

to residents in East County

On Monday, March 6: Food Security Plan,

Microlending program,

emergency risk reduction, consumer protection

 

ROCKVILLE, Md., March 3, 2017—The Montgomery County Council’s Health and Human Services (HHS) Committee at 9:30 a.m. on Monday, March 6, will hold a worksession on how to improve delivery of services for the residents in the eastern portion of the County. In May, the HHS Committee discussed the need for improved service delivery in the East County. The worksessions were an extension of discussions that occurred during the Fiscal Year 2017 budget worksessions.

 

The HHS Committee, which is chaired by Councilmember George Leventhal and includes Councilmembers Roger Berliner and Craig Rice, will meet in the Third Floor Conference Room of the Council Office Building at 100 Maryland Ave. in Rockville. The meeting will be will be televised live by County Cable Montgomery (CCM), which can be viewed on Cable Channels 996 (high definition) and 6 (standard definition) on Comcast; Channels 1056 (HD) and 6 (SD) on RCN; and Channel 30 on Verizon. The sessions also will be available live via streaming through the Council web site at http://tinyurl.com/z9982v8 .

 

At this worksession, the HHS Committee will have an opportunity to discuss the East County Opportunity Zone report. The County’s FY17 budget includes funding for a Department of Health and Human Services social worker to work out of the East County Regional Center. It also includes a community grant to Family Services, Inc. to expand the capacity of the Neighborhood Opportunity Network.

The HHS Committee also will hold a worksession on the development of the County’s Strategic Plan to Achieve Food Security for County residents.

 

It is estimated that about 7 percent of the County's residents (about 77,700) are often without adequate food supplies. That total includes 13.9 percent of children. Studies also estimate that 6.5 percent of the County's seniors live in poverty (about 9,000 people age 65 or over). Families with a disabled member are two to three times more likely to be food insecure than families without a disabled member.

 

At 9:30 a.m. in the Seventh Floor Hearing Room, the Public Safety Committee, which is chaired by Councilmember Marc Elrich and includes Councilmembers Tom Hucker and Sidney Katz, will address emergency operations and community risk reduction with the Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Service.

 

A presentation from the Fire and Rescue Service can be viewed at:

http://tinyurl.com/zyb9wks .

 

The Public Safety Committee also will receive a briefing from the Office of Consumer Protection (OCP).

 

Among the major initiatives OCP is currently working on under Director Eric Friedman is one against an unlicensed builder of new homes that improperly contracted with several consumers, retained deposits totaling several hundred thousand dollars and failed to deliver the homes.

The emergence of warm weather also brings out poor work and practices by some unlicensed home contractors. OCP works with the Maryland Home Improvement Commission, the Police Department and the State's Attorney's Office to take enforcement actions against unlicensed home improvement contractors. One current action is being taken against a solar panel installer.

The OCP also will provide an update on enforcement of the County’s law against overly-aggressive and predatory towing companies. More recent complaints include alleged damage to cars by certain towing firms. OCP is working with several insurance companies to resolve damage disputes.

At 2 p.m. in the Seventh Floor Hearing Room, the Planning, Housing and Economic Development Committee, which is chaired by Councilmember Nancy Floreen and includes Councilmembers Leventhal and Hans Riemer, will hold a worksession on proposed Bill 49-16 that would create a microlending program to provide financial and technical assistance to County entrepreneurs.

Councilmembers Berliner, Navarro and Hucker are the lead sponsors of Bill 49-16. Councilmembers Elrich, Floreen, Katz, Riemer and Craig Rice are co-sponsors.

 

The PHED Committee also will receive an update on implementation of the County’s intensive housing inspection plan.

 

# # # # Release ID: 17-066
Media Contact: Neil Greenberger 240-777-7939