Clarksburg Citizens and Business Advisory Group

Monthly Meeting

February 20, 2001

Bina Allgood, Sandra Batterden, Mark Bonanno, Robert Green, Steve Howie, Cathy Jewell Loretta McClintock, Phil McLaughlin, Teresa Noone, Tom Odt, Terry Reister, Guy Ruffner, Bruce Sherman, Brent Simmons, Art Wallenstein, John Williams

Sheriff's Department 
Bruce Sherman announced that Lt. Jenny Barber has been transferred and Capt. Mark Bonanno will be the new Corrections liaison for inmate transport. Mr. Wallenstein had calculated that the first inmate transport to MCCF would be approximately one year.

Construction Report
Construction is going fairly well, but has not officially made up any time lost due to weather delays.  Sandra will have a better idea by the end of the month when the construction companies submit an updated schedule.  Completion is still scheduled for December 2001.  Touch screen training has been provided and the Transition Team has submitted their review to the contractor.  A trip is scheduled in mid March to Memphis, Tennessee (two members of the Transition Team and Sandra), to the Touch Screen manufacturing (Electronic Systems Incorporated) location.  They will take a look at a touch screen in operation, as well as understanding the logic of the electronics. They have resolved the glitch they had with the sprinkler system contractor.  His permit is in order and he is back at the site.  They are doing a lot of preparatory work for the finishing contractors. The major kitchen equipment that requires ducts is now being installed.  Other equipment is in storage waiting for installation after the floor and wall finishes are complete. The site contractor will be back to work this month.  They will be working to finish storm water work and completing more landscaping. Electrical power (Pepco) is scheduled to go on this week.  Work in the last several months has had power using temporary electrical panels.
February has been a good month without a lot of work stoppage.  Masonry and roofing have been working steadily, even with the cold temperatures.  There are approximately 150 workers per day working at the construction site.

Touch Screen 
Guy had further comments on the Touch Screen.  The alarm system is very elaborate with 112 cameras set up.  There are motion detectors on the fence line and roofline, where if touched, lights go on, alarms go off, and cameras zoom in.  A new feature of the Touch Screen system are cameras in the hallways (MCDC did not have these), which would digitally record any hallway activity (i.e. altercation with an inmate while escorting).  Having these activities recorded would minimize investigative hours.  Tom asked if there were cameras in the inmate cells or day rooms?  There are no cameras in the cells and only camera hook-ups in the day rooms (currently day room cameras are not budgeted).  Steve commented on the remarkable safety record of MCDC which is related to very good staff work, which he presumes will continue at MCCF. 
Terry asked the question, what is the difference between maximum and minimum security prisons in relation to MCCF?  Art explained that a maximum security prison has the walls and basic systems to hold any prisoner.  Most jail escapes are a result of staff carelessness.  The prisoners can walk out the door because they have beat the system through watching when the staff are no longer doing their job.  Technology should be there only as a back-up, never to replace staff.  With any type of security prison (maximum or minimum), if the staff are not doing their jobs, there could be a breach of security.  With our facility having a maximum security perimeter and well trained staff who pay attention to detail, we won't make this mistake.
Guy spoke of scenarios, policy and procedures, and precautions that will be taken such as wall checks and window checks at MCCF.  All of these will help us to test the technology and the staff before opening.

Art introduced Phil McLaughlin, who works in Transit of the Department of Public Works and Transportation.  He has worked in the transit field for 18 years.  Phil has a diverse transit background in fixed route and deviated services.  He stated that there are budgeted funds ($100,000) for transit service to Clarksburg planned for next year.  There is not a project description yet or a specific route.  Phil feels that by listening to the community to see what they believe appropriate services are to Clarksburg/MCCF, he will be better able to determine what transit service is needed that would be most effective and efficient. 
Community members voiced concern about the needs of the inmate's family being able to get to Clarksburg to visit an inmate.  Will it be affordable?  How long will it take?  How many changes will someone make coming from Silver Spring?  Is there a possibility of having a specific bus route or a deviated line from Shady Grove to MCCF?  What time schedule would there be?  Do most visitors visit on weekends?  What are the Visiting Schedule times?  There is a Visitors Transportation Survey which was initiated by the Transition Team to collect data in July 2000, March 2001 and July 2001 to see how they traveled, when they traveled and where the visitors were coming from.  With all these questions in mind, Transportation will analyze this information collected to create a route that best suites the needs of visiting family members.  Rob estimated the survey to be completed in approximately six months.  The data will be compiled and Transportation will prepare a Plan of Action (with options), which will be sent to all CBAG members. 

With the parking problem at MCDC and at many other Rockville work sites, will there be ample parking at MCCF?  Rob has talked with the neighbors on both sides of MCDC for additional spaces they could let us use to relieve the parking problem at MCDC.  MCCF will have more then enough visitor and employee parking. 

Kingsley School 
Cathy gave an update on the recent HPC (Historic Preservation Commission) meeting.  They were not pleased with the way MCPS was proceeding with the facility at the Kingsley School location.  The HPC did not like the temporary trailers on the historic site and felt it was not a part of the cultural landscape.  The Kingsley School is ready to move back to it's historic site (Moneysworth Farm).  It is an environmental setting which the Kingsley School would encompass again as part of their mission and project.  After working with facilities HPC approved a main central building in addition to the portables.  The community members were disappointed in the building plans and felt that the Kingsley School could be a landmark for the Montgomery County's education system. 
Sandra will work with the architect, being sensitive to the aesthetics of the site, to have an acceptable site.  The Kingsley Students will be involved in the research, history and archeological digs.  The students are currently working in the barn and on the 100 acre site.  Cathy anticipates moving into the school in January 2002.

Clarksburg Elementary School 
Cathy has spoke to the principle of the Clarksburg Elementary School concerning coming to the CBAG meetings.  One question from the PTA is how could they interact with the Transition Team?  Although they have been invited before, Art suggested that the PTA could commit one teacher to join the committee, which could be the link to Guy and the Team.  Also it was suggested that Guy and Suzy go to the school to meet with the school's representative to bring them up to date on construction and CBAG issues before they attend their first community meeting.

Volunteer Coordinator 
Loretta asked if the Volunteer Coordinator had been hired?  The position had to be re-announced for two additional weeks due to some staff not getting the announcement.  Once it is closed we will begin the interview process.  One or two of the community members will be asked to sit on the interview board.  Anticipated selection for this position will be the end of March.

American Jail Association (AJA) Conference 
Art announced the AJA conference is meeting from April 22 to April 26, 2001 in Columbus Ohio.  It is the major national meeting on jails where all aspects of jails are discussed.  The Department has suggested that an interested citizen member of the committee attend this meeting with all expenses paid.  They would attend with Rob and his staff.  Rob would like to know within the next two weeks who would be interested in going so that we can get the very best airfares and accommodations possible.  Art will have an announcement sent out to all the citizen members with the conference information.
NEXT MEETING: MARCH 20, 2001 at 7:00 PM