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Ashman backs a second term for Hogan

  • Published in Local

Jud AshmanGaithersburg Mayor Jud Ashman. COURTESY PHOTOGAITHERSBURG — Mayor Jud Ashman has endorsed Governor Larry Hogan in his bid for reelection this fall.

While Gaithersburg, like many other Maryland municipalities, has nonpartisan elections, Ashman is a registered Democrat. 

Formerly a Republican, Ashman switched his party affiliation in the mid-2000s.

“I was disenchanted by the policies of the George W. Bush administration,” Ashman said. “I started voting Democratic, even before I changed my registration. I believe the last Republican I voted for was [former Representative] Connie Morella. Whether I’ve been registered as a Republican or a Democrat, I’ve always been a centrist.”

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Gaithersburg bugged by pesticide concerns

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Gaithersburg Govt logoGAITHERSBURG — At Monday night’s work session, Mayor Jud Ashman and the City Council received recommendations pertaining to the city’s use of pesticides and herbicides.

Gaithersburg’s Sustainability Coordinator Dyan Backe, Landscape and Forestry Supervisor Mark Kober, and Operations Maintenance Manager Charles Reed presented the results of a pilot program the city implemented to test new means of weed removal and plant care.

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Gaithersburg Council Responds to Olde Towne Concerns

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Gaithersburg logoGAITHERSBURG — At Monday night’s meeting at City Hall, Mayor Jud Ashman and the City Council responded to public concerns about the economic condition of Olde Towne. The revitalization of this neighborhood on Gaithersburg’s east side, which includes City Hall, has long been cited as a priority by the city’s elected officials and staff.

During the public comment period, Monica Lozada, a resident of the Deer Park neighborhood, addressed Ashman and the Council.

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Gaithersburg residents discuss pros and cons of closing Kelley Park

  • Published in Local

Gaithersburg logoGAITHERSBURG — On March 22, the Montgomery County Board of Education voted unanimously to approve the recommendation from the Montgomery County Public Schools Superintendent Jack Smith to construct a new elementary school on the grounds of Kelley Park which abuts the Saybrooke neighborhood of Gaithersburg.

As the park is city-owned property, Mayor Jud Ashman and the Gaithersburg City Council will have to give final approval for the school construction.

The proposal has provoked mixed reactions from city residents. While some feel that the school would benefit the city and relieve overcrowding, others fear that it would deprive the surrounding neighborhoods of a valuable community space and negatively impact their quality of life.

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Gaithersburg Book Festival draws large crowd despite rain showers

  • Published in Local

Gaithersburg logoGAITHERSBURG — Thousands of people braved Saturday’s drizzle to attend the ninth annual Gaithersburg Book Festival. 

Mayor Jud Ashman, then a member of the City Council, founded the festival in 2010. Held every May on the grounds of Gaithersburg City Hall, the festival invites several fiction and non-fiction authors to read from their works and meet their readers.

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Immigrants plead case to Gaithersburg government

  • Published in Local

Gaithersburg logoGAITHERSBURG — Several immigrants and their advocates came to City Hall Monday night to ask Mayor Jud Ashman and the City Council to pass a “restoring community trust” ordinance to provide protection to immigrant communities and assuage their fears of interacting with government agencies.

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Gaithersburg Presents Environmental Awards

  • Published in Local

GAITHERSBURG — Mayor Jud Ashman and the City Council presented the city’s annual Environmental Awards at City Hall Monday Night. First given in 2002, the awards ceremony recognize businesses, nonprofits, individuals, schools, and other organizations for their environmental conservation efforts.

Ashman described Brown Station Elementary School, one of the honorees, as near to his heart, as his own children attended the school.

“Brown Station Elementary recently reopened and its students are enjoying the eco-friendly design features of the new campus,” Ashman said. “The school involves its students in many environmentally-responsible activities, including the recycling efforts led by the green team of fourth- and fifth-graders. Students have also been studying pollution in watersheds. In the fall, they took a field trip to learn about food production, waste, and the water cycle and the implications for the Chesapeake Bay.”

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BOE approves Gaithersburg school plans

  • Published in Local

ROCKVILLE — On March 22, the Montgomery County Board of Education voted unanimously to approve the superintendent’s recommendation for the construction of a new elementary school in the Gaithersburg cluster as well as an amendment to expedite the boundary study to accommodate the concerns of area residents.

The proposal calls for the construction of an elementary school on the grounds of Kelley Park, a city property in the Saybrooke neighborhood. Construction is projected to be complete in fall of 2022.  School construction has long been a top priority in Gaithersburg, where several of the extant county elementary schools are operating well over capacity.

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Gaithersburg Receives Legislative Update

  • Published in Local

Gaithersburg logoGAITHERSBURG With one-third of the state legislative session remaining, Gaithersburg officials were alarmed by the recently-introduced General Assembly bill to strip local governments of their authority to regulate placement of small cell towers. 

Monday night Legislative Affairs Manager Monica Marquina joined lobbyist Moira Moynihan to brief Mayor Jud Ashman and the rest of the City Council on legislative issues of concern to the City.

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G-Burg fathers take retreat to discuss city’s future goals

  • Published in Local

Gaithersburg logoGAITHERSBURG — At Gaithersburg’s annual planning retreat, held Monday night at the Casey Community Center, the heads of various city departments presented Mayor Jud Ashman and the City Council with their goals and strategies for the coming fiscal year.

Britta Monaco, director of the Communications and Public Relations Department, said her department would focus on new means, such as increased social media presence, to promote the city’s activities. But one of her department’s objectives – leveraging existing community groups such as homeowner associations, neighborhood watches and other groups as “Citizen Influencers” to promote city events – sparked some questions from the Council.

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