September 14, 2012


Vehicle Donations Needed for Automotive Education Program

The Automotive Trades Foundation (ATF), also known as The Montgomery County Students Automotive Trades Foundation, Inc., is a non-profit foundation established by Montgomery County Public Schools and the local business community to promote automotive education through a student-run licensed used car dealership.

This method of training high school students for skilled positions in the automotive field offers hands-on instruction. Students also are introduced to potential employers with available automotive positions in technical service, customer service, sales and management. They receive valuable on-the-job training that prepares them for higher educational opportunities or direct entry into the automotive job market.

The automotive education program currently is in need of vehicle donations so the program, begun in 1978, can continue.

Donated vehicles allow students to learn through the "Mini-Dealership" model, a student- run business that evaluates and refurbishes donated vehicles to be marketed by students and resold back to the public.

The donated vehicles should meet the following criteria:
  • Runs under its own power (unless the customer is willing to tow in)
  • No major accidents (such as a bent frame)
  • Has a clean unmarked title and lien release (if the vehicle had a loan)
Donors must also complete a Donation Authorization Form.

For more details visit and go to Donate Your Car at the top of the website.

A Green Move: Council Passes Bill to Prohibit Use, Sale of Certain Coal Tar Products

The Montgomery County Council has unanimously approved Bill 21-12 that will prohibit the use and sale of certain coal-tar products that are generally used as sealants on driveways.

With passage of the legislation, Montgomery is the first county in Maryland, and one of the largest counties in the nation, to prohibit the sale of the sealants, which have been recognized to contaminate soils, lakes and homes as they disintegrate and run off after application.

The U.S. Geolological Survey and the American Chemical Society have explained that sealcoat does not stay on a pavement permanently. Sealcoat manufacturers generally recommend re-applications between one and five years, depending upon the product used. The particles can be washed off the roadway by rain and carried through storm drains into streams, ponds and stormwater management devices. Other particles can be blown away by wind or tracked indoors on the soles of shoes.

The Department of Environmental Protection will oversee enforcement of the law.

Read more.

Transportation’s 2012 Annual Report Online

Past accomplishments and future initiatives are among the topics found in the Department of Transportation’s new 2012 Annual Report now available online.  The report also contains a special supplement on the County’s Pedestrian Safety Initiative.

New “Community Cornerstones…” Brochure from Heritage Montgomery

The stories of 24 unique, historic African American churches and their Montgomery County communities are highlighted in a new brochure “Community Cornerstones: A Selection of Historic African American Churches in Montgomery County, Maryland” produced by The Heritage Tourism Alliance of Montgomery County (Heritage Montgomery).

The 34-page booklet can be used as a guide to draw attention to sites that residents may have passed on a daily basis, unaware of their meaningful history, or it can serve as a handy reference for anyone interested in seeing the churches.

View Community Cornerstones online.  Paper copies are available from the Heritage Montgomery office, 12515 Milestone Manor La., Germantown MD 20876 or at heritage sites around the County.

Read more about the brochure.

Take a Look at… Other Sources of News about the County

Montgomery County Volunteer Center
Any time of the year is the right time to get involved, give back to your community and volunteer.  “Montgomery Volunteer,” the Volunteer Center’s online newsletter, keeps readers up on the latest opportunities for all ages and interests.

See the newsletter.

Consumer Protection Wants You to Know about… Scholarship Scams

Need money for college? Doesn't everybody. Unfortunately, in their efforts to pay the bills, many students and their families are falling prey to scholarship scams.

According to the Federal Trade Commission, the nation's consumer protection agency, unscrupulous companies guarantee or promise scholarships, grants or fantastic financial aid packages. Many use high pressure sales pitches at seminars where you are required to pay immediately or risk losing out on the "opportunity.”  For advice on what to look out for, visit the FTC online.