Rockville landmark named for Chestnut Lodge

The future park on the site of a former Rockville landmark finally has a name – Chestnut Lodge Park.

While the park on the site of the 19th-century mental institution, which burned down in a 2009 fire, has yet to be finished or officially approved, on Monday night the mayor and City Council unanimously approved the name of the park as “Chestnut Lodge Park,” which will be located on 500 West Montgomery Avenue.


Proposed elementary school could mean the end for G-Burg’s Kelley Park

Gaithersburg logoGAITHERSBURG — A proposed elementary school on the grounds of Kelley Park is causing concern for thousands of residents here.

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, where several elementary schools are operating well over capacity. The proposed site is on the grounds of Kelley Park in the Saybrooke neighborhood of Gaithersburg. The city-owned park features playgrounds, a stream, walking trails and baseball diamonds which host games for the Cal Ripken Collegiate League in the summer months. As the park is city property, the City Council has final approval over any construction plans.


Council passes ZTA on small cell towers

countysealROCKVILLE — After more than a year of delays and revisions, the Council and telecommunications companies have finally gotten their way regarding small cell antennas.

On Tuesday, the Council unanimously approved a zoning text amendment clearing the way of the use of small cell telecommunication antennas in commercial zones.

“This is really intended to make some very modest changes to reflect the reality of our world,” said Council member Nancy Floreen (D-at large).


County Executive candidates make pitch to local Jewish voters

With about five weeks to go before the Democratic Primary on June 26, the six Democratic candidates for County Executive have made their pitch to a wide variety of voter interests and constituent groups as they each tried to set him or herself apart in the field.

On Monday, Jewish voters had their turn to listen to and weigh in on the debate as the six Democratic candidates for County Executive gathered for another forum, this time at Kol Shalom in Rockville. The issues ranged from the rise in hate crimes and security to the County’s economy, with the candidates rehashing debates and making attempts to appeal to Jewish voters.


Metro may reduce rail service through fiscal 2019

WMATA metro logoWASHINGTON — A Metro Board committee voted to adopt a resolution to continue the schedule of reduced, post-SafeTrack hours of service through fiscal year 2019. 

The Board Safety and Service Delivery Committee voted unanimously at Metro Headquarters Thursday to approve renewing the schedule of rail service in anticipation of year two of the preventive maintenance plan, as scheduled. The plan involves several actions, including inspecting cables and testing rails for a power problem called “stray current,” which contributed to smoke incidents in 2016. Another practice is torqueing, which includes tightening bolts of rail fasteners.



Survey shows homeless population in Montgomery County continues to fall

A homeless man sleeps on the pavement in Silver Spring in July 2017. FILE PHOTOA homeless man sleeps on the pavement in Silver Spring in July 2017. FILE PHOTOThe number of homeless people in the County decreased by 6 percent, according to a survey from the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments. There were 54 fewer people experiencing homelessness in 2018 than in 2017.

The number of homeless people counted on Jan. 24 decreased from 894 in 2017 to 840 for this year.

“I think we are getting down to the most vulnerable. These are the hardest to house,” said Christine Hong, director of homeless services at Interfaith Works.

Volunteers throughout the Washington, D.C., area walked the streets to count the number of people experiencing homelessness. That night, they found 7,473 homeless people in the District, which is eight percent fewer than in the previous year. In Prince George’s County, the number of homeless people dropped by 10 percent.


Council pushes to make County wine capital

Bottle of wine poured into glassROCKVILLE — A proposed County Council zoning change could make it easier for Montgomery County to become the winery capital of the East Coast – at least that what some council members hope.

On Tuesday farmers and small grape growers spoke in support of Zoning Text Amendment 18-03, which would loosen regulations in the County’s agricultural reserve in hopes to facilitate the expansion of wineries, breweries and distilleries.

ZTA 18-03, which Council members Hans Riemer (D-at large) and Craig Rice (D-3) are lead co-sponsors on, would amend the County’s current zoning regulations to allow for distilleries, breweries and cideries. While wineries are currently allowed under current County zoning laws in the agricultural reserve, other alcohol production facilities are not.

“The proposed ZTA is important to our success because it brings clarity to what is currently a confusing and burdening zoning code,” said Poolesville farmer Robert Butz.


Nobody’s fault but mine or ours

donaldtrumpThe only thing worse than a Republican is a Democrat. One is venal and vile. The other is clueless.
I was discussing the problems of politics with a candidate’s surrogate the other day and it dawned on me there are people who still do not understand why Donald Trump got elected to the highest office in the United States.
Many want to merely dismiss his supporters as being stupid. Some want to dismiss their neighbors as being racists or misogynists for supporting him while still others who love Trump are labeled as traitors.
The Trump supporters on the other hand have labeled those who oppose Trump traitors, racists, misogynists and stupid – but in fairness so has the president. While both sides of the aisle retreat to their side of the sandbox and act like toddlers with loaded diapers, some of us are still scratching our heads and wonder how this all came to pass.

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