and in other news...
All images and information (c) 2010-13 Montgomery County Civic Federation (except where noted). All rights reserved.
Former Inspector General decries "Montgomery County government's culture of secrecy"
In a Washington Post Opinion piece published 9/23/11, former IG Thomas Dagley said "Montgomery County
would benefit from a cultural change that encourages residents and employees to ask tough questions on
difficult issues--and forces leaders to answer." (click to view Washington Post Opinion piece)
News updates posted on this website (most recent item first)
A more detailed explanation of each item below appears on the webpage for the committee shown--
access via the "Current Issues" button in the menu to the left, then select a committee.
- posted 12/2/13 for Public Safety (Final Report and Recommendations of County Executive's Task
Force on Boosting the Nighttime Economy)
- posted 11/16/13 for Planning & Land Use (MCCF testimony at Council's second set of public
hearings on the Zoning Code Rewrite and accompanying District Map Amendment rezoning)
- posted 11/11/13 for Transportation (3 MCCF resolutions regarding bicycling safety education,
MCPD patrol activities, and infrastructure--see text on "Resolutions" webpage on this site)
- posted 9/14/13 for Planning & Land Use (MCCF testimony to Planning Board on Clarksburg
Master Plan Amendment for Ten Mile Creek Watershed area)
- posted 4/7/13 for Environment (officials' letter re deer management in county Federal park areas)
- posted 1/31/13 for Utilities (Governor released (Electricity) Grid Resiliency Task Force Report)
- posted 11/16/12 for Planning & Land Use (Council approves 2012 Subdivision Staging Policy)
- posted 5/20/12 for Planning & Land Use (pipeline list of development projects that have been
approved but are not yet built, compiled March 2012)
- posted 11/25/11 for Planning & Land Use (Oct. 28 Joint Letter from County Executive, Council
President and Planning Board to MD Dept. of Planning on September revised draft of "Plan
Maryland" for future state growth)
- posted 10/31/11 for Planning & Land Use (on 10/27 Planning Board approved 2011 Mobility
Assessment Report [including intersection congestion levels] for transmittal to Council; 10/31
Council T&E Comm. held worksession on the report)
White Oak Science Gateway Master Plan sent back to Planning Board for further work
In a letter dated 10/2/13, County Council President Nancy Navarro sent the White Oak Science
Gateway Master Plan back to the Planning Board for further work. (click to view Council letter)
The Great Montgomery Hackathon is coming this winter.
Are you a programmer or a citizen looking for an easier way to find information and data on the
county government website? Be a part of the #hackMontgomery Hackathon this winter. Details
coming. Keep informed of the event on twitter at #hackMontgomery.
County Unveiled New Open Government Data Management Website
This site was established in response to the Open Government Act approved by the County Council on
December 11, 2012, which requires all departments and agencies of county government to compile the data
collected or generated by them onto a single publicly available website. The URL for the new website is:
Zoning Ordinance Revision Project and accompanying District Map Amendment
The Planning Board has completed its work on modernizing and updating the county's zoning code. It conducted
worksessions in February to consider definitions, parking and other outstanding issues, and then held its final public
hearing on the draft revised code on April 23. The Board then undertook an implementation review to make
recommendations to Council on applying zone changes, primarily in non-residential areas. Implementation review
occurred weekly at the Board through early May, at which time both the draft revised code and implementation
recommendations were transmitted to the County Council.
- On 4/5/13, the Council Planning, Housing and Economic Development Committee (PHED) received an update on
- On 5/7/13, ZTA 13-04 (proposed new Zoning Code) and G-956 (District Map Amendment) introduced in County
Council. The Council public hearing was held June 11, and PHED worksessions took place June 14 through end of
September. (click to view staff packet accompanying introduced ZTA). Nov.12 & 14, Council held second hearing.
Schedule for remaining action:
December 2 and 9 - PHED Committee to hold 2 additional worksessions, to consider testimony from Nov. hearing
January 14, 15, and 16, 2014 - Full Council worksessions on Code Rewrite (Action on DMA may be postponed.)
In October 2013 staff posted the recommended PHED Committee version of the new zoning code (click for link to the
PHED recommended Draft, and interactive maps of the county showing current and proposed new zoning for
properties). NOTE: existing area Overlay Zones are contained in "59-4. Euclidian zoning" section of new code]
(click to download Zoning Conversion Table listing existing zones and the new zones proposed to replace them)
Report on Design and Construction Flaws in Silver Spring Transit Center released to public
A report from the contracted inspection team entitled "Silver Spring Transit Center Structural
Evaluation of Superstructure" was submitted to county government on March 15, 2013 and released
to the public on March 19. (click for Dept. of General Services webpage to access report)
County Executive Leggett initiated effort to streamline building and land development
On 1/20/12, County Executive Isiah Leggett unveiled a cross agency initiative to 'green tape' the county's
development approval and building permit processes, to make it less costly and shorten the time for
developers to get approval for new construction projects. (click to view county press release or to view the
DPS webpage for the initiative)
- Proposed Executive Regulations approved that affect Dept. of Permitting Services (DPS) application of the
Fire Safety Code (MCER No. 8-12, 9-12, 10-12, and 11-12). Public comments were due by April 30, 2012.
(click to view proposed DPS Executive Regulations)
- The DPS held a public Streamlining Development Round Table on 5/15/12; a series of worksessions took
place 5/29/12. (click to view email announcing Round Table or upcoming meetings of work groups)
- On 11/27/12 DPS held a Streamlining Development Briefing to update public on the initiative. (click to view
Draft Streamlining Initiative Results)
- In April 2013 a Streamlining Development Executive Committee comprised of government officials and
stakeholders, including the MCCF, was created to oversee implementation of the recommended changes..
12/25/12 Examiner article-"Montgomery County lawmaker pushes 'secret' contract with consultant"
According to this Examiner story, Valerie Ervin has been lobbying her fellow Council members to award a
$1.3m contract to a developer consultant of her choice, to help in streamlining the development approval
process (click to view Examiner article)
1/3/13 Examiner article-"MontCo lawmaker denies 'secret' contract"
In this follow-up Examiner story, Ervin denies she is pushing the $1.3m no-bid contract and says there is
nothing secret about it. But according to a copy of the plan created by the proposed consultant the
document is intended only for the County Council--not the public--unless "a contract is awarded to this offer."
(click to view follow-up Examiner article)
1/4/13 Examiner article-"Union wants Montgomery County planning contract investigated"
MCGEO, the County government employees' union, has called for an investigation of Ervin's push for a
"single source, no-bid contract that would streamline the county's planning processes." (click to view article)
Parents Coalition blogspot posts copy of consultant proposal; says Ervin claims it's not secret
Claiming Ervin states it's not a secret, the Parents Coalition of Montgomery County has posted a copy of the
consultant proposal to streamline development approval. In the plan, the proposed contractor, The Clearing,
includes as a reference their contract to improve the planning process in Calgary, Canada, where Rollin
Stanley is now Planning Director. (click to view consultant's proposal)
TO CONTACT MCCF, send emails to firstname.lastname@example.org, or click the 'Contact us' button (box under homepage left side menu).
|NEXT MCCF MONTHLY MEETING
Monday, January 13, 2014
County Council Building - 1st Floor Auditorium
100 Maryland Avenue, Rockville, Maryland
The December 2013 Civic Federation newsletter is now available
online.(click to view latest newsletter)
|Second Annual Budgetpalooza!
Wednesday, February 5, 2014, 7-9 PM, Rockville Memorial Library, 21 Maryland Ave., Rockville
The Civic Fed, Taxpayers League, and Parents' Coalition are teaming up for the Budgetpalooza!
We will go through the MCPS proposed FY15 Operating Budget, chapter by chapter.
We are looking for volunteers to analyze and present chapters. Click here to sign up
MCCF has a weekly column entitled the "Federation Corner" that is published in The
Montgomery Sentinel newspaper. The Sentinel comes out on Thursdays, and is available at
newsstands and in newsboxes at Metro stations throughout the county. Past columns are
archived on this website (see the 'Federation Corner columns' tab in the menu to the left).
Most recently archived column:
11/21/13 Zoning problems accompany code rewrite (click title to view)