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Press Releases - County Council

Council Committee Meetings on Oct. 24

For Immediate Release: Thursday, October 24, 2019

The following committee meetings are scheduled for Thursday, Oct. 24. Individuals interested in attending a committee meeting should confirm the information on the day of the meeting by visiting the Council’s web page at tinyurl.com/CountyCouncilMeetings or by calling the Council’s Communications Office at 240-777-7832.

Meeting: Government Operations and Fiscal Policy (GO) and Health and Human Services (HHS) Committees
Time: 9:30 a.m.
Location: Seventh floor hearing room
GO Committee: Council President Nancy Navarro (Chair), Councilmember Andrew Friedson and Council Vice President Sidney Katz
HHS Committee: Councilmembers Gabe Albornoz (Chair), Evan Glass (Lead for Homelessness and Vulnerable Communities) and Craig Rice
Topic:
Community Grants Process
The GO and HHS Committees will meet jointly to review the community grants process. Beginning in FY21, the Office of the County Executive and Council will collaboratively develop a more robust approach to community grants that will be targeted to specific outcomes. This joint meeting is an update from the July 18 meeting where a vision and strategy for community grants was discussed to create a central County Grants Office in FY22 to source federal and state funds and to increase the capacity of County departments.

The Council staff report can be viewed here.

Meeting: GO Committee
Time: 2 p.m.
Location: Seventh floor hearing room
Topics:
Office of Legislative Oversight (OLO) Report 2019-15, Measuring MC311 System Performance
The GO Committee will review OLO Report 2019-15. The Council asked OLO to prepare a report on the metrics that the County currently uses to measure MC311 performance, explore other potential variables, and recommend what might be done to enhance the services provided by MC311. The report recommends that the following questions be explored to enhance MC311’s efficacy and core functions:

  • To what extent should the County require residents to use MC311 to reach County offices? Should the County consider a policy that all servicing departments that list MC311 as their primary point of contact also include their own phone number as a secondary contact, along with an explanation for residents of how using MC311 can save costs and hold servicing departments more accountable for service delivery?
  • Who determines how far the call center should be expected to go in trying to answer resident questions? To what extent should MC311 be expected to try to answer questions versus triaging questions and then connecting callers with the best contact at the servicing departments?

The discussion is expected to include staffing levels, new technology platforms and operating departmental targets for responding to resident requests for service. Barry Hudson, public information officer, and Fariba Kassiri, deputy chief administrative officer, are among those expected to attend the meeting. The full report can be viewed here.

The Council staff report can be viewed here.

MC311 Strategic Options
The GO Committee will review the operations for future improvements of the MC311 call center. In an April 11 budget review meeting, the Committee requested a “deep dive” into how the performance of the MC311 call center could be improved. Barry Hudson, director of the Public Information Office, and Brian Roberts, temporary manager of MC311, are among those expected to attend the meeting. The Council staff report can be viewed here.

Public Election Fund
The GO Committee will close out its meeting with a review of the County’s public election fund. Under Maryland Election Law, Section 13-505, counties may establish their own system of public campaign financing. In September 2014 the Council unanimously enacted Bill 16-14, which established a Public Election Fund to provide public campaign financing for County Executive and Council candidates. When the Council enacted Bill 16-14 it was the first measure of its type in the Washington metropolitan region and in Maryland. The goals of this law are to:

  • encourage greater voter participation in County elections;
  • increase opportunities for more residents to run for office; and
  • reduce the influence of large contributions from businesses, political action groups and other large organizations.

The Council is responsible for appropriating funds for the Public Election Fund. Jared DeMarinis, State Board of Elections, and David Crow, County Department of Finance, are among those expected to attend the meeting.

The Council staff report can be viewed here.

The Council committee meetings 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 meetings also will be available live via streaming through the Council web site at: http://www.montgomerycountymd.gov/COUNCIL/ondemand/index.html.

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Release ID: 19-341
Media Contact: Sonya Healy 240-777-7926 , Juan Jovel 240-777-7931