SCHOOL CONSTRUCTION PLAN AVAILABLE
School Superintendent Jerry Weast released his recommended six-year construction plan to the Board of Education Oct. 28. The document is available for public review at www.montgomeryschoolsmd.org/departments/planning/CIPMaster.htm.
The proposal advances several controversial school issues in Potomac: It recommends that a boundary study be conducted in spring 2006 for the Seven Locks Elementary replacement school. In a supplement, it also recommends that a site selection committee be formed for a new mid-county high school to relieve overcrowding at Gaithersburg, Quince Orchard, Northwest, and Wootton high schools.
Winston Churchill High School will no longer be considered in planning for the new high school, the supplement said. That announcements comes after a Churchill Parent Teacher Student Association e-mail caused alarm in the Churchill community, saying that students could be involuntarily reassigned in the future.
The capital budget proposals, if approved by the Board of Education and the Montgomery County Council, would increase the FY 2007 Capital Budget to $267.5 million, an increase of $82.5 million over the amount approved by the County Council for FY 2006. The six-year CIP would increase by $239 million, to $1.172 billion. The increased budget is due primarily to increases in construction costs.
The Board of Education is holding a work session on Wednesday, Nov. 2 to discuss the superintendent's CIP and boundary recommendations. Public hearings on the recommended Capital Budget and CIP and boundary recommendations are set for Nov. 9 and 10. The Board is scheduled to take final action on Nov. 17.
POTOMAC STATE LEGISLATORS HONORED
Three Maryland lawmakers representing Potomac have been selected to receive honors from separate organizations this fall.
Sen. Brian Frosh will be named Consumer Legislator of the Year by the Maryland Consumer Rights Coalition at a Nov. 15 award ceremony.
The organization cited Frosh's "landmark foreclosure scam prevention bill," the Maryland Telephone Consumer Protection Act, identity theft protection measures, and increased bankruptcy exemptions as examples of Frosh's "tireless advocacy" for consumer rights.
Del. Kathleen Dumais (D-15) was named Woman of the Year by the Montgomery County Business and Professional Women.
She has promoted women's causes through her focus on family law both in the House of Delegates and her law practice, according to a press release. She received her award at a dinner in Rockville Oct. 18.
Del. Jean Cryor (R-15) was selected as a Woman of Achievement by the suburban Maryland chapter of Business and Professional Women/USA. Potomac resident, activist, and businesswoman Elie Pisarra-Cain also received a Woman of Achievement award.
The organization selected awardees from community nominations based on "outstanding career achievement, efforts in public policy, assisting other women in advancing their career" and offering guidance to other women and young people.
Cryor received the award Oct. 6 in Gaithersburg.
CHURCHILL PERFORMS 'WEST SIDE STORY'
Join Winston Churchill High School Performing Arts as they bring to their stage the romantic, singing and dancing hit musical “West Side Story” on Nov. 11-12, and Nov. 18-19 at 7:30 p.m. in the Bish Auditorium. Tickets are $10, with $2 discounts for children under 10 and groups of 20 or larger. Tickets can be purchased during the Churchill lunch hour, 10:45-11:45 a.m. by the cafeteria on Tuesday, Nov. 8- Friday, Nov. 11. Special evening box office hours are scheduled on Wednesday, Nov. 9 from 6-8 p.m. The box office will open one hour before all performances. A ticket order form is available at www.churchillhs.org and questions should be directed to email@example.com or call 301-469-1246.
PLANNING BOARD TO CONSIDER AG RESERVE
The Montgomery County Planning Board will hold a public hearing Thursday, Nov. 3 at 7 p.m. on proposed changes for the county's protected agricultural reserve.
The County Council has proposed legislation to limit the percentage of a lot that can be used for non-agricultural buildings, paved surfaces, driveways and other surfaces which do not permit rain water from directly soaking into the ground, in agricultural and other large lot zones (Zoning Text Amendment 05-15).
Separately, the County Executive has proposed to eliminate community water and sewer extensions for new private institutional facilities in the agricultural zone (Comprehensive Water Supply and Sewerage Plan Amendment).
The staff report for both items is available on the Planning Board web site, www.mcparkandplanning.org.
The Board will issue recommendations to the County Council and the Executive.
To sign up in advance to testify, call 301-495-4600. Written testimony may be sent to the Planning Board Chairman Derick Berlage at 8787 Georgia Avenue, Silver Spring, Md., 20910, faxed to 301-495-1320 or e-mailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
MEDICARE FORUM PLANNED
U.S. Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-8th) will host a public forum to discuss the Medicare program, including the prescription drug benefit that will take effect Nov. 15.
The forum will be Tuesday, Nov. 1, 9:30-11 a.m. at the Rockville Senior Center, 1150 Carnation Drive. Experts from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services will discuss new benefit and respond to questions from the audience.
DEER HUNTS IN BLOCKHOUSE, MUDDY BRANCH
The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission announced plans Monday to expand its managed deer hunt program.
New hunt locations include the Serpentine Barrens Conservation Park and Muddy Branch Stream Valley Park in Potomac as well as the Dry Seneca Stream Valley Park in Poolesville, portions of the Great Seneca Stream Valley Park and North Germantown Greenway Park in Goshen.
This decision follows recommendations from an inter-agency work group commissioned to help reduce deer-related traffic accidents and other negative impacts.
Hunts in Potomac will take place at the Serpentine Barrens and Muddy Branch Parks, and Blockhouse Point Conservation Park (an existing hunt location) Tuesdays Nov. 8 and 22 and Dec. 13.
The parks will be closed from sunrise until sunset those days, and closure notices will be posted.
For more information, visit www.mc-mncppc.org/environment/deer/index.shtm or call the Commission’s deer information hotline at 301-495-3585.