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Montgomery County Council committee highlights for Thursday, July 13

For Immediate Release: Thursday, July 13, 2017

Montgomery Council committees to
discuss before and after school

childcare programs
Also on Thursday, July 13: ‘School to prison pipeline’;
Proposed amended recordation tax rates

ROCKVILLE, Md., July 12, 2017—The Montgomery County Council’s Health and Human Services (HHS) Committee and its Education Committee will meet jointly at 2 p.m. on Thursday, July 13, for a worksession regarding procedures for the allocation of school property space for private organizations that operate before and after school programs.

The HHS Committee, which is chaired by Councilmember George Leventhal and includes Councilmembers Roger Berliner and Craig Rice, and the Education Committee, which is chaired by Councilmember Rice and includes Councilmembers Marc Elrich and Nancy Navarro, will meet in the Seventh Floor Hearing 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). The channel 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 session also will be available live via streaming through the Council web site at .

The County Office of Internal Audit (OIA) published a program assessment report on the Office of Community Use of Public Facilities (CUPF) in September 2016 to identify opportunities that would improve efficiency and effectiveness in executing responsibilities for the before and after school child care programs in public schools. Previously, some potential providers of before and after school care contended they did not have a fair chance to get space in schools to operate programs because many long-term providers were given preference.

The assessment evaluated current challenges facing CUPF and current processes and procedures CUPF has implemented to address these challenges. The report recommended improvements that CUPF could implement to help optimize performance.

The assessment determined that CUPF was compliant in all major aspects of its role in administering the programs. However, as a result of lessons learned from its first year (2015) under a new executive regulation, CUPF made numerous improvements in training materials and forms utilized to score applicants and in internal processes to monitor the selection process. In addition, the assessment suggested that CUPF would benefit from strengthening existing controls and implementing additional controls.

In June 2017, County Executive Ike Leggett transmitted Executive Regulation 6-17 to amend the previous executive regulation regarding the program. The changes in the new executive regulation will be discussed by the committees.

The joint committee also will hold its third worksession on a 2016 Office of Legislative Oversight report on the “School-to-Prison Pipeline in Montgomery County.” The worksession will address agency efforts to mitigate the pipeline and to identify concerns warranting furthering action.

At 9:30 a.m. in the Seventh Floor Conference Room, the Government Operations and Fiscal Policy Committee, which is chaired by Councilmember Navarro and includes Councilmembers Sidney Katz, and Hans Riemer, will hold its third worksession on Bill 10-17 that would modify the recordation tax rates levied under state law for certain property transactions.

The "Recordation Tax Premium," which is charged on real property transactions, went into effect in 2008. Bill 15-16, enacted in 2016, increased the premium rate from $1.55 to $2.30 per $500 of assessment. Unlike the two elements of the base rate paid on all transactions, the premium applies only to the cost of a property or a refinancing that is more than $500,000. Half of the proceeds from the premium are allocated to County Government capital projects (i.e., capital projects of departments in the Executive Branch). The other half is for rent assistance for low and moderate income households.

Bill 10-17 would reduce the premium for transactions that are more than $500,000, but less than $1 million, from $2.30 to $1.55 per $500 of assessment. The bill would increase the premium for transactions that are more than $1 million, but less than $2 million, from $2.30 to $2.55 per $500. The bill also would increase the premium for transactions that are more than $2 million from $2.30 to $3.55 per $500.

The lead sponsor of the bill is Councilmember Elrich. Councilmember Leventhal is a co-sponsor. The goal of Councilmember Elrich in proposing the bill is to change the premium rates so that transactions valued at more than $1 million would be charged a higher tax rate than transactions valued at less than $1 million. The intent is to make the change without changing the total amount of recordation tax revenue received by the County. However, the tax rates in the bill, as introduced, were not verified to be revenue neutral.

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Release ID: 17-228
Media Contact: Sonya Healy 2407777926