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Press Releases - County Council

Council to Receive a Briefing on the Thrive Montgomery 2050 Draft Plan and Hold a Public Hearing on Proposed Council District Boundaries at Virtual Meeting on Nov. 16 Starting at 9 a.m.

For Immediate Release: Monday, November 15, 2021

Also on Nov. 16: New legislation introduced by Council President Hucker and Councilmember Friedson that would allocate ten percent of fuel-energy tax revenue to the County Green Bank and vote on resolutions introduced by Councilmember Navarro in support of the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments use of equity emphasis areas and high-capacity transit areas as key decision-making tools

The Council will meet virtually on Tuesday, November 16 at 9 a.m. The meeting will begin with a proclamation recognizing World Pancreatic Cancer Day and will be presented by Councilmember Jawando.

Information on each Council agenda item can be viewed below.

Zoning Text Amendment (ZTA) 21-10, Accessory Structures – Use Standards

Introduction: The Council will introduce Zoning Text Amendment (ZTA) 21-10, Accessory Structures – Use Standards, which would clarify the maximum footprint for accessory buildings on a lot in the agricultural, rural residential and residential detached zones. The ZTA makes it clear that the cumulative footprint of all accessory structures may not exceed 50 percent of the footprint of the principal building or 600 square feet, whichever is greater. The lead sponsors of the legislation are Councilmembers Friedson and Jawando.

PHED Committee Draft of Thrive Montgomery 2050

Briefing: The Council will receive an update on the Planning, Housing and Economic Development Committee (PHED) Draft of the Thrive Montgomery 2050 Plan, which is a framework to guide planning for land use, housing, the economy, equity, transportation, parks and open space, the environment, historic resources, urban design and arts and culture over the next three decades.

The PHED Committee recently completed their review of the plan and the Committee draft can be downloaded here. A community listening session to hear from residents about the plan is scheduled to take place virtually via Zoom on Nov. 30, 2021, starting at 7 p.m.

Those expected to attend and provide information include Casey Anderson, chair, Montgomery County Planning Board; Gwen Wright, director, Planning Department; Tanya Stern, deputy director, Planning Department; and Khalid Afzal, special projects manager, Planning Department.

Resolution for the Approval of Correct Copy of Montgomery County Planning Board Regulation No. 3-21 on Forest Conservation – Trees

Introduction: The Council will introduce a resolution which would approve a corrected copy of Montgomery County Planning Board Regulation No. 3-21 on forest conservation. The resolution is needed because a copy of Planning Board Regulation No. 3-21 that was attached to Resolution No. 19-893 inadvertently contained non-substantive technical errors. In order to properly codify Regulation No. 3-21 in the Code of Montgomery County Regulations, it is necessary to rescind Resolution No. 19-893, and to adopt the enclosed accurate copy of Regulation No. 3-21.

The lead sponsor is Council President Hucker at the request of the Planning Department. A public hearing is tentatively scheduled for December 7, 2021.

Special Appropriation to the FY22 Operating Budget, Montgomery County Public Schools, $252,242,245 for the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) III Fund

Introduction: The Council will introduce a more than $252 million special appropriation to the FY22 Operating Budget for Montgomery County Public Schools’ (MCPS) Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) III Fund. This special appropriation is needed because MCPS received additional funding from the U.S. Department of Education through the Maryland State Department of Education. The ESSER III Fund was included in the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARP) that was signed into law on March 11, 2021.

The grant funds will address the impact that COVID-19 has had, and continues to have, on elementary and secondary schools. The funding will support the addition of 113 teachers, 32 paraeducators, 50 social workers, 40 counselors and a range of other positions within MCPS. Additional information on the positions and other elements of the requested grant funds can be found in the Board of Education’s Nov. 9, 2021 approval memorandum.

A public hearing is tentatively scheduled on Nov. 30, 2021.

Supplemental Appropriation to the FY22 Operating Budget, Montgomery County Public Schools, $1,205,690 for the Trauma and Behavioral Health Grant

Introduction: The Council will introduce a $1.2 million supplemental appropriation to the FY22 Operating Budget of Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS).

MCPS will utilize these funds to implement a program to address trauma and behavioral health issues exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic on students and their families. Specifically, this funding will focus on direct and indirect services to students, including counseling, social skills, crisis response and intervention and staff development.

A public hearing is tentatively scheduled on Nov. 30, 2021.

Approval of the lease (term) extension between the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission (M-NCPPC) and Meadowbrook Foundation, Inc.

Introduction: The Council will introduce a resolution to approve the extension of the lease between the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission (M-NCPPC) and Meadowbrook Foundation, Inc. (Meadowbrook Stables).  

Meadowbrook Stables provides equestrian education to Montgomery County residents through a Public-Private Partnership with M-NCPPC. In November 2001, the Planning Board approved a development plan for Meadowbrook Stables that consisted of renovations and new construction in two phases. That development plan included the concept of a covered riding arena as part of the second phase of development to improve the functionality of Meadowbrook Stables.

The Foundation’s current lease began in Sept. 2010 and is scheduled to end on Aug. 31, 2025 with the option of one renewal term through Aug. 31, 2030. M-NCPPC and the Foundation seek to further extend the lease through Aug. 31, 2041. The Planning Board approved the lease extension by consent at its Sept. 15, 2021 meeting.

The lead sponsor is Council President Hucker at the request of the M-NCPPC. A public hearing is tentatively scheduled for Dec. 7, 2021

Resolution to Amend the FY22 Operating Budget for the Montgomery County Government, Resolution 19-872, Section G, Designation of Entities for Non-Competitive Contract Award Status: Impact Silver Spring, Inc.; Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Washington, Inc.; Family Services, Inc.

Introduction and vote expected: The Council will introduce and vote to amend the FY22 Operating Budget for the Montgomery County Government, Resolution 19-872, to allow the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) to modify the purpose statements for current contracts with Impact Silver Spring Inc., Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Washington, Inc., and Family Services, Inc.

The purpose statement for Impact Silver Spring funding would be revised from “provide support for the Neighborhood Opportunity Network Initiative” to “provide support to residents to access DHHS services and other resources they require to improve their quality of life/community.”

The purpose statement for the Catholic Charities funding would be revised from “provide emergency assistance include family support specialists” to “provide emergency support services, including case managers.”

The purpose statement for Family Services would be revised from “provide support for the Neighborhood Safety Net Services Program to provide critical case management support to residents in Gaithersburg and East County” to “provide critical case management support to residents in Gaithersburg and East County.”

Special Appropriation to the FY22 Capital Budget and Amendment to the FY21-26 Capital Improvements Program, Department of General Services, Council Office Building Renovations (No. P010100), $3,600,000

Introduction: The Council will introduce a $3.6 million special appropriation to the FY22 Capital Budget and Amendment to the FY21-26 Capital Improvements Program for the Council Office Building (COB) renovations project.

This special appropriation is needed to provide funding for the remaining construction cost associated with the addition of two new Councilmember offices and relocated legislative information services staff as well as associated furniture, equipment and IT infrastructure needs. In addition, this appropriation funds several key subprojects related to the transition from nine to 11 Councilmembers.

Redistricting, Expedited Bill 41-21, Elections - Council Districts – Boundaries

Public hearing: The Council will hold a public hearing on Bill 41-21, Elections Council Districts - Boundaries, which is the enabling legislation that would revise the boundaries of the Council districts as recommended by the map proposed by the Montgomery County Commission on Redistricting. The Council received a briefing from the commission on Nov. 9, 2021 about their recommended redistricting map that creates seven new Council districts.

Residents can view the commission’s proposed map here. The commission’s report to the Council can be viewed here. There are federal, state and county laws governing the approval of voting districts, and these legal requirements are included in the commission’s report.

Before 2020, the Charter required the County to be divided into five Council districts. The new requirement for seven districts applies to the 2022 elections, and the Council will consist of eleven members in total in Dec. 2022. Seven district Councilmembers will be selected by registered voters who live in each district and four at-large members will be selected by all voters across the County.

The Montgomery County Charter, as amended by the voters in the 2020 general election, states that the County shall be divided into seven Council districts. Each district must be compact in form and composed of adjoining, contiguous territory. Moreover, the populations of each district must be substantially equal.

A second public hearing on the proposed redistricting map and Bill 41-21 will be held on Nov. 18 at 7 p.m. The lead sponsor is Council President Hucker at the request of the Commission on Redistricting.

Special appropriation to the FY22 Operating Budget, Montgomery County Government, Office of the County Executive – Online Sales and Telework Grant Program, $869,733 and an amendment to FY22 Resolution 19-872, Section G, FY22 Designation of Entities for Non-competitive Award Status– Conference and Visitor’s Bureau

Public hearing and vote expected: The Council will hold public hearing and vote on an $869,733 Special Appropriation to the FY22 Operating Budget and an amendment to FY22 Resolution 19-872, Section G, FY22 Designation of Entities for Non-competitive Award Status – Conference and Visitors Bureau to implement a state grant that supports businesses recovering from the pandemic.

Approximately ten percent of the funds will be provided to Visit Montgomery to market and conduct business outreach for the grant program and create, launch and manage a new business directory called Discover MoCo on Visit Montgomery’s website. The remainder of the funds will be used for direct grants to eligible businesses.

Bill 44-21, Montgomery County Green Bank – Funding – Fuel Energy Tax Revenue

Introduction: Council President Hucker and Councilmember Friedson will introduce Bill 44-21, Montgomery County Green Bank – Funding – Fuel Tax Revenue, which would mandate that the Council appropriate 10 percent of the fuel-energy tax revenue to the County Green Bank each year in the annual operating budget. The Montgomery County Green Bank was established by Bill 18-15, enacted by the Council on June 30, 2015 and signed into law by the County Executive on July 7, 2015. Councilmember Riemer is a cosponsor of the bill.

The Green Bank promotes the investment in clean energy technologies in the County by offering financing structures to lower the cost of financing these technologies for County residential and commercial properties. The fuel-energy tax is levied and imposed on every person transmitting, distributing, manufacturing, producing, or supplying electricity, gas, steam, coal, fuel oil or liquefied petroleum gas in the County.

A public hearing is tentatively scheduled for Dec. 7, 2021.

Bill 45-21, Elections – Public Campaign Financing – Restrictions

Introduction: The Council will introduce Bill 45-21, Elections – Public Campaign Financing – Restrictions, which would amend the County’s public campaign finance law to permit certain limited in-kind donations, equivalent to $10,000 or less, from state or County central committees to publicly financed candidates.

The purpose of the bill is to permit the central committees to display or distribute the literature of publicly financed candidates under certain conditions. Currently, the central committees are precluded from displaying or distributing literature for publicly financed candidates.

The lead sponsors are Councilmembers Glass, Katz and Riemer and Council Vice-President Albornoz.

Resolution to Support Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments’ Endorsing Equity Emphasis Area as a Key Planning Concept and Tool to Inform Decision Making and Action

Vote expected: The Council will vote on a resolution introduced by Councilmember Navarro to support the Metropolitan Washington Council of Government's (COG) resolution endorsing equity emphasis areas as a key concept and tool to inform decision making and action. Equity emphasis areas are locations with high concentrations of low-income individuals or racial and ethnic minorities. All other Councilmembers are cosponsors.

The COG Board passed Resolution R47-2021 on Oct. 13, 2021, which endorsed equity emphasis areas as a key planning concept and tool to guide future growth and investment. The concepts will influence decisions related to infrastructure investment, planning program, education, health care, land use, housing, and economic opportunities that will enhance and build on making regions and local communities more racially equitable.

Resolution to Support Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments’ Endorsing High-Capacity Transit Areas as a Key Planning Concept and Tool to Inform Decision Making and Action

Vote expected: The Council will vote on a resolution introduced by Councilmember Navarro to support the COG resolution endorsing high-capacity transit areas as a key concept and tool to inform decision making and action. High-capacity transit areas are locations around Metrorail, commuter rail, light rail, bus rapid transit and streetcar stations that are in place or will be in place by 2030. All other Councilmembers are cosponsors.

The COG Board passed Resolution R46-2021 on Oct. 13, 2021, endorsing high-capacity transit station areas as a key planning concept and tool to guide future growth and investment decisions related by optimizing land use around these station areas, enhancing transportation connections and creating transit-oriented communities so the region can accommodate future growth and ensure quality places where all residents can thrive.

The Council meeting schedule may change from time to time. The current Council and Committee agendas, Council staff reports and additional information on items scheduled for Council review can be viewed at: http://www.montgomerycountymd.gov/COUNCIL/ondemand/index.html.

The Council and committees are meeting via Zoom this fall because of ongoing construction and technology upgrades in the Council's Hearing Room and the inability to conduct meetings in a socially distant way in other areas of the Council Office Building with television broadcast capacity. Councilmembers will continue to hold meetings in their offices by appointment.

The virtual Council and committee meetings will be streamed live on the Council’s web page via YouTube and on Facebook Live and can be watched on County Cable Montgomery on Xfinity/RCN 6 HD 996/1056, Fios 30, and on the CCM live stream.

Release ID: 21-464
Media Contact: Sonya Healy, 240-777-7926 , Benjamin Sky Brandt 240-777-7884