Montgomery in Focus Masthead
February 2012


Talk With a Teen Girl Today

Talk with a Teen Girl logoAdolescence is challenging, and teens today often feel invisible and unheard. That is why I’m partnering with Crittenton Services of Greater Washington to give you an opportunity to "Talk with a Teen Girl Today.”

Please join me on Wednesday, February 22 from 5:30 pm to 7:00 p.m. at the Silver Spring Civic Building at Veterans Plaza to listen to a panel of teen girls from Crittenton programs in Montgomery County speak out on the issues they face in their schools, homes, and lives. We will also share results from a survey that teen girls developed on the issues affecting their peers and additional facts and figures on the lives of girls in Montgomery County.
I was speechless when girls from Crittenton programs shared the unique obstacles they face in the County today. The good news is that all of us, whether we have daughters of our own or not, can do something to help.  Crittenton Services has effectively promoted the healthy development of Montgomery County’s girls for nearly thirty years, and I’m grateful for their leadership on this important project.

Please join me not only in listening to these amazing teen girls, but also in learning the simple things that you can do to make a difference in their lives. I look forward to seeing you there.


Council Endorses Bus Rapid Transit for Corridor Cities Transitway

The Council unanimously endorsed bus rapid transit (BRT) as our preferred mode for the Corridor Cities Transitway (CCT) in light of a study showing a greater economic benefit to the County if the project is built sooner. This marks a change from our earlier decision to support light rail transit (LRT).

The study, which was commissioned by the Maryland Department of Transportation, assumes that the first segment of BRT (to Metropolitan Grove) could begin construction in 2018 and be completed in 2020 and that the second segment (to COMSAT in Clarksburg) could begin in 2026 and be completed in 2028. On the other hand, LRT could begin in 2028 and be completed in 2031—11 years later than BRT—and the second segment could begin in 2038 and be completed in 2040—12 years later than BRT.

The study found that the present value economic impact in the Life Sciences Corridor would be 74 percent higher, employment would be 54 percent higher, and present value tax impact would be 76 percent higher if the CCT could be build sooner.

Given the huge boost to our economy, I see this as a no-brainer, and I fully support changing our recommendation to BRT. We need the CCT, and we need it sooner rather than later.

The Council joins the County Executive and the Corridor Cities Transitway Coalition in supporting the BRT option. The Governor will make the final determination about which mode the State will submit to the U.S. Department of Transportation for funding.

For more information, see the analysis we used for our discussion.


Streamlining the Development Approval Process

As a part of an ongoing multi-agency effort to streamline the development approval process, the County will hold two public forums to solicit input.  Agencies hope to eliminate bottlenecks, duplication of reviews, inconsistent positions and process inefficiencies in order to make the approval process more user-friendly, understandable, reliable, consistent and efficient. Advanced registration is requested.


New Site Helps You Go Green

Nancy Floreen and Ike Leggett recyclingNow you can find all of the local incentives, information and programs you need to help you green your lifestyle and save money all in one place. Through MyGreenMontgomery, you can create a personalized green plan, add an event to the calendar, comment or ask questions about specific green projects, or share your own success story. This site not only directs you to accurate information and resources, it also serves as a platform for engaging in green topics. Best of all, it is specific to Montgomery County.

This site is open to all government and community content that can help residents decrease their impact on our environment, so if you administer a program or initiative, know of one that would be good to include in the Web site, or have completed a green community project that would be great to share, submit it through the contribute content page.

This comprehensive new site was developed by the Montgomery County Department of Environmental Protection and funded by the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act. I think it is a fantastic tool, and I hope you will too.


Your Thoughts on Capital Improvements Program Wanted

Let us know what you think about the County Executive’s proposed six-year Fiscal Year (FY) 2013 Capital Budget and FY 2013-2018 Capital Improvements Program (CIP). The Council will hold public hearings on February 7, 8 and 9, with the 9th set aside for testimony on the capital budget for MCPS.  To register to speak, call 240-777-7803.  If you prefer, you can send your comments to to have them included in the public record.  The Council will hold several work sessions over the coming months before making a final decision on funding.


Fast Fact

Did you know that with a population of 971,777, Montgomery County isn’t just the biggest county in Maryland, but it also boasts more residents than many states, including Delaware, South Dakota, Alaska, North Dakota and Vermont? In fact, our county is nearly twice as populous as Wyoming which is home to just 563,526 people. You can get more information about Montgomery County’s demographics at M-NCPPC.


Green Tip of the Month

My Green Montgomery logoFrom the new, here are some tips on conserving water and therefore saving money. 

  • Take shorter showers.
  • Turn off the faucet when brushing your teeth or shaving; turning off the water while brushing can save up to 8 gallons a day, or 240 gallons a month!
  • Use a bucket to collect cold water at the start of a shower and use the water for plants or animals.
  • Use dehumidifier water for watering plants.
  • Scrape dishes instead of rinsing before loading the dishwasher; pre-rinsing can use up to 20 gallons of water. Soak baked-on or burned dishes.
  • Avoid using the “rinse and hold” feature on the dishwasher, which uses 3–7 gallons of water without cleaning your dishes.
  • More tips for efficient dishwasher use: U.S. Department of Energy.
  • Use less water when washing dishes by starting with just a little water in the dishpan. Use a dishpan to catch rinse water and then soak the dishes as you go.
  • Do full loads in the dishwasher and washing machine.
  • Clean your driveway and walks with a broom instead of the hose.


Let's Talk

Is your community organization hosting a public meeting?  Please let me know how I can help.  I am happy to assist residents in understanding pending bills or in finding ways to get involved in the political process.  Even more important, I want to hear about what matters to you.  Send your meeting notices to or call 240-777-7959 if you would like me to address a particular topic with your group.