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Local inventor wants to change your ballgame going experience

BETHESDA -- Ever sit at a baseball game eating a slice of pizza, and not know what to with the plate once you’re done? You probably shoved the plate on the ground below your chair, assuming the janitors at the stadium will pick it up for you. Brian Kelley, 22, has an invention to change that.

The idea started during a group project in his entrepreneurship class during his senior year at The Bullis School in Potomac. The students were assigned to create a business idea and pursue that idea. “Going to a lot of games growing up, I’ve noticed the amount of trash that accumulates,” Kelley said. “So this idea came up in my head, I thought ‘Let’s get a better way for being able to throw out trash.’”

Kelley wanted to create a more efficient way for people to throw out their trash and for cleaning crews to collect the trash. To do this, Kelley started by taping paper bags onto the bottom of chairs. The bag makes cleanup after the game easier, as all a janitor would have to do is pick the bag off the chair, instead of pick up the trash off of the floor.

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Some students still want to get “Lost in Space”

Brad Gurda’s seventh-grade students at Parkland Magnet School for Aerospace Technology in Rockville are in for a surprise when school starts again in September. Their teacher will be wearing the blue flight suit he was given while attending the Honeywell Educators at Space Academy program this summer.

Gurda spent five very intense days in Huntsville, Alabama, learning not just about space and what astronauts experience but also how to make science interesting to his students.

“It was remarkable,” said the 31-year-old teacher, who lives in Frederick. For five days, he joined a group of teachers from 45 states and 33 countries as he participated in classroom lectures and laboratory and field training. He worked with a team of 15 teachers who performed many of the same exercises that astronauts do.

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Gaithersburg Council votes on new development plan

GAITHERSBURG -- The City Council discussed and voted on development plans in the Kentlands, salary increases for the mayor and City Council members and amendments City policy at its meeting Monday night.

Saul Holding Limited Partnership presented its sketch plan for development in the Kentlands, which, while corresponding well with the vision for the master plan, left the Council members with some questions. The sketch plan presented at the meeting displayed a 12-acre plot of land which is set for multiple uses including both commercial and residential. The city council members expressed some reservations regarding the plan, including the wording of the plan as well as height limits of the buildings. Most notably the plan included the phrase “up to” when describing most of the developments, which concerned City Councilmembers who thus did not know exact specifications of what will be built. In the end, however, the City Councilmembers voted unanimously to support the sketch plan.

“It’s early, but the sketch plan conforms very closely to the master plan that was adopted and planned years ago by the city,” said Gaithersburg mayor Jud Ashman. “I think it’s got that going for it. I remain concerned about potential for large densities and its impact on schools and roads.”

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Montgomery County resident Richard Madaleno Announces run for Governor

Kensington resident, state senator and vocal critic of the incumbent governor Richard Madaleno announced his candidacy for governor of Maryland on Monday.

Madaleno, if elected, would be the first openly gay governor in history of Maryland.

“I am running for governor, and I am going to win,” said Madaleno to applause at the Universities of Shady Grove.

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County Council gets cheers over circus animal ban

Circus animals may no longer be welcomed in the County as the County Council is likely to pass a bill banning performance animals from staying in the County.

 Eight of the nine County Council members are co-sponsoring Bill 23-17, which would ban businesses and traveling shows such as circuses from keeping their performance animals in the County.

The bill was well received during its public hearing Tuesday with almost all testifying in support saying it would be a strong stance against animal cruelty.

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Bernie supports a Jealous vote

Though Gov. Larry Hogan says he did not vote for President Trump, Ben Jealous, a progressive candidate and former NAACP president, is trying to turn his campaign for governor in 2018 into a referendum on the two Republicans.

“We are a great state with a great future with great people, but our children will not be able to realize their full potential if we continue to tolerate the status quo,” said Jealous.

Hogan is popular in the state, but certainly not among progressive voters in Takoma Park, many of whom were drawn to Bernie Sanders’ appearance at the rally. Trump, however, is not as popular in Maryland, and Jealous is ready to capitalize on that.

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Raskin hopes to train next gen politicos

Since his first campaign for elected office in 2006, Congressman Jamie Raskin has trained young adults to become political organizers.

"Politics at its best is all about education," said Raskin, who represents Maryland's 8th Congressional District. "You're educating people about the process, you're educating people about the substance of the issues, and then you're educating and getting educated by people about the prospects for real social and political change," he said.

Known as Democracy Summer, the program was formed alongside Raskin's first campaign for the Maryland State Senate in 2006 as a way to not only conduct political outreach but also to educate and encourage young adults to become involved in politics.

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Defense bill passes House

CAPITOL HILL – One of the most consequential bills on the House of Representatives calendar each year, the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), got a thorough hearing over three days last week before ultimately passing 344- 81 on Friday.

“This bill is the vehicle by which we usually, for 55 years at least, fulfill our responsibilities under the Constitution that I mentioned, to provide for the common defense. I believe that’s the first job of the federal government,” said Rep. Mac Thornberry (R-Texas-13), chairman of the House Armed Services Committee. “It is fundamentally wrong to send men and women out on dangerous missions without providing them the best equipment, in the best shape, with the best training that our country can possibly provide.”

The NDAA for fiscal year (FY) 2018 authorizes $696 billion in defense spending, $28.5 billion more than the amount requested by President Donald Trump. Among the added expenditures are $7.9 billion in aviation readiness funds and $5.9 billion for the U.S. naval presence, as well as $2.5 billion for missile defense efforts. The bill increases funding for cyber operations by $1.7 billion and for U.S. Cyber Command by 16 percent.

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Local man wins big in state lottery action

We often dream of what we would do if we were to one day win the lottery.

For one Gaithersburg man, that dream became a reality this past Independence Day weekend when the Multi-Match subscription holder claimed the game’s $500,000 jackpot.

With the odds of winning at a one in 6 million chances, the 67-year-old grandfather could hardly believe his luck when Communications Director Carole Gentry called him on July 3 to share the news of his win.

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