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Protesters confront Sen. Cardin at town hall

  • Published in News

ROCKVILLE – Protesters assembled outside a town hall to voice their opposition to legislation sponsored by Sen. Ben Cardin.

"There's a long track record of Cardin, among other people in Congress, of supporting policies that don't recognize the humanity of Palestine," said Benjamin Douglas, 33, who led the protest.

The protest was part of the Boycott, Divest, and Sanction (BDS) movement which aims to change Israel's West Bank settlement and embargo policies through international pressure. They gathered Thursday at a town hall focused on health care with Sen. Cardin at the Johns Hopkins Rockville campus.

Douglas, who works as a lawyer, said he was there to specifically protest a bill primarily sponsored by Maryland's senior U.S. Senator.

"The specific catalyst is Senator Cardin's role as a primary introducer and primary sponsor of the Israel Anti-Boycott Act which actually seeks to criminalize certain forms of boycott, divest, sanctions movement," Douglas said. "The intent is to intimidate civil society and promote investment even in things the U.S. government considers illegal like settlement in the West Bank," he added.


Leisure World residents revolt against new plans

  • Published in Local

Leisure World logoSome residents of Leisure World, a residential facility in Silver Spring that is home to 8,500 people who are at least 55 years old, are so frustrated with management’s call for a new $7.2 million administration building that they intend to hold a town hall meeting of their own.

Just Us, a residents group run by Sheryl Katzman, is inviting residents to attend a July 28 meeting. The idea, Katzman explained, is to make sure that residents are aware that under the proposal, the administration building will be demolished and a new one built near the golf course even though an engineering study was never done to see if the current building could be refurbished instead.

“The residents are trying to put a stop to it. I am leading the charge,” Katzman said.


Panelists answer questions on anti-Semitic hate crimes at D.C. town hall

  • Published in Local

WASHINGTON – Community leaders and representatives of D.C. government shared messages of encouragement and of community support at a public forum on anti-Semitic hate crimes at the Washington Hebrew Congregation Thursday.

Each speaker gave words of encouragement to the group of more than 100 people who attended the town hall.

Rev. Thomas L. Bowen, director of religious affairs for D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser, attended to represent the mayor’s office.

“I am here because our mayor is concerned about what happens in our city,” he said.


Maryland Congress members speak out against Trump in Silver Spring town hall

  • Published in Local

SILVER SPRING – Members of Congress representing Montgomery County appeared at a town hall meeting to express their concerns Sunday about President Donald J. Trump’s choices on various issues, from healthcare to Syrian refugees.

Senators Chris Van Hollen (D) and Ben Cardin (D) as well as Congressmen John Delaney (D-6), Jamie Raskin (D-8) and John Sarbanes (D-3) spoke on a number of topics before taking questions from constituents in the audience. They said they did not believe Trump’s decisions and remarks on current challenges facing the U.S. coincided with community interests. 


Metro workers share concerns

  • Published in Local

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ROCKVILLE – Metro workers and bus and rail customers shared concerns about the general manager’s budget proposals, such as increased bus and rail fares and service reductions, during a town hall at the County Executive Office Building Jan. 18.


Council asks education and utility questions

  • Published in Local

MoCo Logo

OLNEY – Local residents asked Montgomery County Council members to better fund schools and do something to control utility rates during a town hall meeting Sept. 14 at Rosa Parks Middle School.

Olney resident Michael Binder criticized Pepco’s proposed $13 average monthly rate increase, saying Pepco investors should take a financial hit, as many of their customers did in the past few years.

According to officials from Pepco, the proposed rate increase in meant to recover investments that Pepco made to increase the quality of their service.

Council member Roger Berliner (D-1), who previously criticized Pepco for the proposed rate increase, said the council does not have jurisdiction to change Pepco’s rates.

“Our council has zero authority,” said Berliner. “It is a totally state-regulated entity. We can stand up, we can make our voices known; we can participate.”


Ministers speak out against violence

  • Published in Local


Sometimes life’s challenges are too vast to be resolved by a single discussion.

That sentiment moved the Montgomery County Black Ministers Conference to invite the community to prayer at Good Hope Union United Methodist Church in Silver Spring and Mt. Calvary in Rockville July 20.

The recent killings of African-American males and police in Louisiana, Minnesota and Dallas, drove citizens across the nation, including the Black Ministers Council, to dig deeper for solutions.

“This was an opportunity for members of the faith community lead by pastors (and) churches in the Baltimore-Washington area to mourn and join together to disavow violence against police officers and police brutality against communities of color,” said Elwood Gray, president of the Black Ministers Conference.


Parents and students discuss anti-bullying at town hall meeting

  • Published in Local

Bullying town hall picSILVER SPRING – Parents and students pushed panelists to think about new anti-bullying programs at a town hall on Sunday.

The Committee on Hate/Violence, a division of the Montgomery County Office of Human Rights, put on the third installment of a series on anti-bullying. While the previous two focused on expert and student testimony, Sunday’s town hall let community members air their experiences and challenge panelists, including educators and attorneys, to do more.

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