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Press Releases - County Council

Council scheduled to vote on bills that would require landlords to provide air conditioning to tenants, amend tree canopy fees and increase contracting opportunities for local small businesses on Feb. 25 at 9 a.m.

For Immediate Release: Monday, February 24, 2020

Also on Feb. 25: Council will honor Brigadier General Charles McGee, Councilmember for a day winner Adjo Evonlah and recognize efforts to prevent teen dating violence

The Council will meet on Tuesday, Feb. 25 at 9 a.m. Individuals interested in attending a Council meeting should confirm the information on the day of the meeting by visiting the Council’s web page or by calling the Council’s Legislative Information Office at 240-777-7832. All meetings are held in the Council Office Building (100 Maryland Ave., Rockville, Md.) in the third floor hearing room, unless otherwise noted. Council staff reports for all items on the Council’s agenda can be found here.

Honoring Brigadier General Charles McGee
Councilmember Will Jawando will be presenting a proclamation to Brigadier General Charles McGee, who received the honorary promotion of brigadier general on Dec. 20, 2019. General McGee also has the distinction of being the oldest living member of the 332nd Fighter Group of the famed Tuskegee Airmen, fondly nicknamed the “Red Tails,” and is a beloved resident of Montgomery County who recently celebrated his 100th birthday.

Recognizing Councilmember for a day winner Adjo Evonlah
Councilmember Craig Rice will host Northwest High School student Adjo Evonlah as an honorary councilmember. Councilmember Rice, who chairs the Council’s Education and Culture Committee, developed the challenge as a way for young people to become more engaged in public policy issues, learn about local government and become more involved with the community. Councilmember Rice announced the winner at the Council’s Youth Town Hall reception at Wheaton High School on Nov. 13. Nine other finalists also were recognized at the reception. Students can apply for this year’s challenge at https://tinyurl.com/cm4aday2020 . The deadline to apply is April 3, 2020.

Resolution in Support of D.C. Statehood
The Council is scheduled to vote on a resolution in support of D.C. statehood. Councilmember Evan Glass is the lead sponsor. Council President Sidney Katz and Councilmembers Gabe Albornoz, Craig Rice, Will Jawando, Andrew Friedson and Nancy Navarro are cosponsors. D.C.’s more than 700,000 residents pay taxes but do not have full representation in the U.S. Congress. The resolution points out that no other nation denies the right of self-government, including participation in its national legislature, to the residents of its capital. The Council staff report can be viewed here.

Resolution Condemning Recent Supreme Court Decision On “Public Charge” Immigration Rule
The Council is scheduled to vote on a resolution at the Montgomery County Council meeting to denounce the Supreme Court’s public charge decision and urging Congress to enact comprehensive immigration reform. Councilmembers Gabe Albornoz and Nancy Navarro are the lead sponsors. All other Councilmembers are cosponsors. This resolution is in response to the Supreme Court’s Jan. 27 decision regarding the Trump administration’s change to the current public charge regulation, which would create major barriers for low-income immigrants seeking to enter or remain legally in the U.S. Under this regulation, an individual’s income threshold (earning less than 125 percent of the federal poverty level), age, certain health conditions, limited English proficiency, minimal education background and prior receipt of certain benefits may be taken into account and negatively impact the individual’s eligibility to gain permanent legal status, and in the future, attain lawful U.S. admission. The Council staff report can be viewed here.

The Council will introduce the following bills:

Bill 6-20, Solid Waste (Trash) - Release of Balloons - Prohibited
The Council is scheduled to introduce Bill 6-20, which would amend the Solid Waste Chapter of the County Code to prohibit the release of a balloon into the air in certain circumstances and prescribe penalties for the unlawful release of a balloon. Councilmember Tom Hucker is the lead sponsor. County law does not currently regulate the release of balloons into the atmosphere. Several jurisdictions throughout the nation - including Queen Anne’s County, Maryland - have adopted laws to restrict balloon releases in response to concerns about environmental harms caused by balloons, including harms to farms, water and wildlife.

The Council staff report can be viewed here.

#BalloonWaste is being used for this bill on social media.

Bill 7-20, Interagency Commission on Homelessness - Membership and Duties
The Council is scheduled to introduce Bill 7-20, which would alter the membership and duties of the Interagency Commission on Homelessness. Councilmembers Evan Glass, Gabe Albornoz and Craig Rice are the lead sponsors. The Interagency Commission on Homelessness (ICH) is a 25-member commission created by the Council in 2014 to coordinate public and private programs to reduce homelessness in the County. The ICH has requested that several modifications and updates be made to its membership and duties. The purpose of these amendments is to improve the governance and effectiveness of the ICH, as well as to clarify the mission of the ICH to “end and prevent” homelessness, as opposed to simply reducing homelessness. Under Bill 7-20, the ICH would remain a 25-member commission, but its composition would change. At the request of the ICH, certain ex-officio slots would be replaced with more public representatives, including homeless service providers, healthcare providers, family services providers, and affordable housing providers.

The Council staff report can be viewed here.

#MoCoCommissionOnHomelessness is being used for this bill on social media.

The Council is scheduled to vote on the following bills:

Bill 24-19, Landlord-Tenant Relations – Obligations of Landlord – Air Conditioning
The Council is scheduled to vote on Bill 24-19, which would require a landlord to provide and maintain air conditioning service for rental housing located in the County between June 1 and September 30 and establish standards for air conditioning service provided by a landlord. Council Vice President Tom Hucker is the lead sponsor. Councilmembers Will Jawando, Gabe Albornoz, Nancy Navarro and Hans Riemer are cosponsors. The goal of this bill is to ensure that tenants in rental housing have access to working air conditioning to improve public health and living conditions.

The Council staff report can be viewed here.

#MoCoRentalAC is being used for this bill on social media.

Bill 39-19, Contracts and Procurement – Local Small Business Reserve Program (LSBRP) – Amendments
The Council is scheduled to vote on Bill 39-19, the Local Small Business Reserve Program and Direct Purchase Enhancement Act. Councilmember Will Jawando is the lead sponsor. All other Councilmembers are cosponsors. Bill 39-19 would amend the Local Small Business Reserve Program to do the following: permit the participation of non-profit organizations in the program; increase the minimum percentage of contracts that must be awarded to small businesses; establish a goal to award certain direct purchases to local small businesses; and alter reporting requirements. The goal of this legislation is to support the backbone of Montgomery County’s economy, locally owned small businesses, by expanding opportunities and access to more than one billion dollars in government contracts and purchases.

The Council staff report can be viewed here.

#LocalSmallBusinessReserve is being used for this bill on social media.

Bill 41-19, Tree Canopy Fees – Exemptions
The Council is scheduled to vote on Bill 41-19, which would amend tree canopy fees exemptions to include land disturbances by any public use airport, and generally amend the provisions for tree canopy fee exemptions. Councilmember Craig Rice is the lead sponsor. The goal of this legislation is to assist airport operations by eliminating future tree canopy fees for public airports and refund any fees paid since Jan. 1, 2017.

The Council staff report can be viewed here.

#MoCoTreeCanopy is being used for this bill on social media.

2020 Census
The Council will receive a briefing on the 2020 U.S. Census. The following topics are expected to be discussed:

  • overview of goals, timeline and formats of the United States Census 2020 and job application and volunteer recruitment update;
  • progress update on coordinated effort of County government, agencies and community partners and organizational structure, timeline and goals; and
  • strategy for hard-to-count neighborhoods, low response target audiences and vulnerable populations.

Those expected to attend the meeting include: Diane Vu, director, Office of Community Partnerships; Shawn Ellis, Montgomery County 2020 Census Manager; Anita Vassalo, director, Montgomery County Public Libraries; Gwen Wright, director, Montgomery County Planning Department; Derek Turner, chief communications officer, Montgomery County Public Schools; Karla Silvestre, community engagement director, Montgomery College; Gloria Aparicio Blackwell, director, Office of Community Engagement, University of Maryland; and Ashaduntae Kemp, partnership specialist, U.S. Census Bureau, Philadelphia Regional Census Center.

The Council staff report can be viewed here.

The Council will hold the following public hearing at 1:30 p.m.:

Supplemental appropriation and CIP amendment - $3,448,231 for Agricultural Land Preservation Easement
The Council will hold a public hearing and vote on a supplemental appropriation and CIP amendment of $3,448,231 for the Agricultural Land Preservation Easement. The County received additional funding for the purchase of agricultural easements, in the form of an additional $743,731 in Agricultural Transfer Tax and $2,704,500 from a state grant. The proposed resolution amends the current project description form and appropriates the additional funding to allow the County to proceed with the purchase of certain easements. The Council staff report can be viewed here.

The following committee meetings will meet at the conclusion of the Council meeting:

Meeting: Planning, Housing and Economic Development (PHED) Committee
Time: 2:30 p.m.
Location: Third floor hearing room
PHED Committee: Councilmembers Hans Riemer (Chair), Andrew Friedson (Lead for Parks) and Will Jawando
Topic:

Germantown Plan for the Town Sector Zone
The PHED Committee will review the Germantown Plan for the Town Sector Zone. The purpose of this master plan is to replace the existing Town Sector zoning with current zoning classifications for the Churchill Village community of Germantown. The master plan recommends appropriate zoning and ways of protecting the community’s open space and recreation areas, while maintaining the predominantly residential character of Churchill Village. The plan recommends new zones related to three goals developed during the community planning process: maintain the residential core, protect open space and recreation areas and support neighborhood-serving commercial uses. Casey Anderson, chair of the Planning Board, and Gwen Wright, director of the Planning Department, are among those expected to attend the meeting.

The Council staff report can be viewed here.

Meeting: Health and Human Services (HHS) and Public Safety (PS) Committee
Time: 2:30 p.m.
Location: Seventh floor hearing room
HHS Committee: Councilmembers Gabe Albornoz (Chair), Evan Glass (Lead for Homelessness and Vulnerable Communities) and Craig Rice
PS Committee: Council President Sidney Katz (Chair), Councilmember Gabe Albornoz and Council Vice President Tom Hucker
Topic:

Bill 1-20, Health and Sanitation - Bodywork Establishments - Licensing – Amendments; and Resolution to Adopt Bill 1-20 as a Board of Health Regulation
The HHS and PS Committees will meet jointly to review Bill 1-20 and a resolution to adopt Bill 1-20 as a Board of Health Regulation. Councilmember Craig Rice and Council Vice President Tom Hucker are the lead sponsors. Council President Sidney Katz and Councilmembers Nancy Navarro, Gabe Albornoz and Hans Riemer are cosponsors. This legislation would repeal code provisions concerning massage establishments and expand the scope of bodyworks establishments to include massage establishments. Councilmember Craig Rice and Council Vice President Tom Hucker are the lead sponsors. Bill 1-20 also would do the following:

  • require every individual performing bodyworks services to be a certified massage therapist or registered massage practitioner;
  • require compliance with all County licensing requirements as a condition of building permits;
  • allow the revocation of use and occupancy permits for zoning and licensing violations; and
  • generally amend the provisions for bodyworks establishments.

The goal of this legislation is to prevent owners of bodyworks establishments from using unqualified employees and to ensure compliance with the County’s licensing requirements. Those expected to attend the meeting include the following: Hadi Mansouri, acting director, Department of Permitting Services; Clark Beil, Sr., administrator, Licensure and Regulatory Services, DHHS; Paula Jilanis, chair, Maryland Board of Massage Therapy Examiners; and Amelia Mitchel, American Massage Therapy Association.

The Council staff report can be viewed here.

#BodyworksZoningLicensing is being used for this bill on social media.

The Council and 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 Council meeting also will be available live via streaming through the Council web site at: http://www.montgomerycountymd.gov/COUNCIL/ondemand/index.html and on Facebook Live.


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Release ID: 20-057
Media Contact: Sonya Healy 240-777-7926 , Juan Jovel 240-777-7931