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Panelists answer questions about hate crimes

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CHEVY CHASE — An energized group of concerned residents, law enforcement, and members of civil rights organizations filled the Jane E. Lawton Community Center on Wednesday night, Sept. 27, gathering for a public forum to discuss the rising number of hate incidents in the community.

The attendees were given information about what to do in the event they or their families are confronted with a hate or bias incident.

Joel Rubin, a member of the Chevy Chase Town Council, moderated the forum. Rubin organized the gathering in reaction to anti-Semitic fliers that had recently been placed outside the front doors of several houses in the usually quiet neighborhood.

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Parents of afflicted toddler take part in Race For Every Child 5K

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Nolan Story 1Nolan Detwiler and his father Brian Detwiler PHOTO BY MARK POETKER  

Nolan Detwiler is small for 18 months, has a captivating smile and will soon be walking and exploring the world around him.

However, Nolan won’t be going very far. Twenty-two hours a day, the blond-haired little boy must be connected to either an IV pump that pushes life-sustaining fluids and nutrition through a central line into his heart or a G-tube that feeds special formula and medicine into his stomach. Most of the day, he must be connected to both, and his parents have devised ways to keep the backpack that carries everything nearby and connected.

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Panelists answer questions at Chevy Chase town hall on hate crimes

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Chevy Chase Town logoCHEVY CHASE — An energized group of concerned residents, law enforcement, and members of civil rights organizations filled the Jane E. Lawton Community Center on Wednesday night, Sept. 27, gathering for a public forum to discuss the rising number of hate incidents in the community.

The attendees were given information about what to do in the event they or their families are confronted with a hate or bias incident.

Joel Rubin, a member of the Chevy Chase Town Council, moderated the forum. Rubin organized the gathering in reaction to anti-Semitic fliers that had recently been placed outside the front doors of several houses in the usually quiet neighborhood.

“What do you do when hate comes to your town?” Rubin asked in his opening remarks. “This is something I don’t think anyone here in our community expected, and because of that we thought it would be important to have a community discussion about the question of hate in our community.”

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Chevy Chase Council caught in the middle

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Tension was noticeably thick as over a dozen residents of the Town of Chevy Chase spoke to the Town Council about their displeasure with the tactics and trustworthiness of Purple Line Transit Partners during a meeting at the Jane E. Lawton Community Center last Monday night.

“I would like the Council to formally put on record a request to fire the Purple Line Transit Partners, the private contractor behind the ridiculously short notice people had that the trail was going to be closed four to five years” said Deborah Vollmer during the public comments portion of the agenda. “They are thuggish; they’re incompetent.  And the way they have entered into this project we can only ask what more outrages are we going to face? What more corners are they going to cut?”

On Aug. 29, the Maryland Transit Administration announced on its Purple Line website that it would close the approximately 3.5-mile trail to begin construction on the rail system. The light-rail line will travel between Silver Spring and Bethesda on the trail right-of-way.

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Town of Chevy Chase cuts local police force

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In order to cut costs, the Town of Chevy Chase will have only one off-duty Montgomery County police officer patrolling its streets for eight hours a day beginning Feb. 1.

The Town has been hiring off-duty County police officers for about 10 years to patrol its streets and parks. Currently, one officer each per shift watches over the area for a total of two eight-hour shifts. These shifts are generally during morning and evening rush hours.

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Temple Shalom supports Syrian refugees

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syrian kitchenIn the Syrian family’s kitchen, the family’s four children have labeled everything in English and Arabic, with help from volunteers from Temple Shalom in Chevy Chase. PHOTO BY KAREN GREEN  

A family of six Syrian refugees is settling into a new life in America, thanks to the support of Temple Shalom in Chevy Chase.

The parents and four children, ages five through 12, have been living in Prince George’s County since Aug. 25, after having fled Syria and lived in Jordan for four years.

“They are a family that came with nothing,” said Karen Green, coordinator of the synagogue’s refugee response team.

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An Obsession:

Local Chevy Chase home becomes the last refuge for the donkey lover in all of us

Donkeys 3Bernice Rabin presents one of the pieces of her extensive collection of art and memorabilia that feature donkeys. PHOTO BY MARK POETKER  

Inside Bernice Rabin’s Chevy Chase home is a world of donkeys, more than 1,000 of them, although none of them are alive.

Donkeys cover the walls, shelves, stairways, cabinets and table tops. They are found in toys, paintings, tapestries, ash trays, thimbles, troll dolls, paper fans, cut glass, clothing, a chess set, record albums, wine and beer bottles, musical instruments, plates, wind chimes and pillows.

Many of them depict folk art from countries that Rabin, 79, has visited. Others have been given to her by friends. Rabin believes she has spent close to $25,000 on her obsession.

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Three towns face higher taxes

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Montgomery County homeowners living in three towns are in for a double property tax increase in Fiscal Year 2017.

Both the County government and the town governments recently approved real estate tax increases, with the County Council raising property taxes from 98.7 cents per $100 of assessed value to $1.02 per $100, an 8.7 percent increase.

Town governments in Chevy Chase, Poolesville and Somerset also all approved property tax increases this month.

Meanwhile in Kensington, personal property taxes for businesses and utilities are due to rise while the town's real estate tax rate remains flat.

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Chevy Chase mulls property tax

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CHEVY CHASE – No one spoke out against a proposed property tax increase May 3, although 30 people attended a public hearing about the Fiscal Year 2017 budget.

If adopted on May 11, the town's proposed $2.68 million budget will include a 1 cent property tax for every $100 of assessed value. That amounts to a $100 tax for every $1 million of assessed property value.

According to Town Manager Todd Hoffman, the town hasn't had a property tax for several years.

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