September 25, 2019

Marcus Jones To Be Nominated by County Executive to Lead County Police Department

Marcus Jones
Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich will nominate Acting Police Chief Marcus Jones to serve as Montgomery County’s new police chief. Jones has been with the Montgomery County Police Department for 34 years and served as the acting police chief since June 2019.

Prior to taking over as acting police chief, Jones served as the assistant chief of the Investigative Services Bureau. He also served as the 3rd District commander, Director of Major Crimes, Drug Enforcement Commander and created an award-winning diversity training program. He is on the board of the Governor’s Prescription Drug Monitoring Program, the Montgomery County Domestic Violence Coordinating Council and the Maryland Violence Intervention and Prevention Advisory Council.

Jones is an adjunct instructor for the Leadership in Police Organizations three-week training course sponsored by the International Association Chiefs of Police. He is a former chair of the National Black Police Association and served on the Board of Directors for the National Law Enforcement Memorial Fund and the Task Force on Mentoring in Montgomery County. He holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration from the University of Maryland University College, is a graduate of the FBI National Academy and is currently enrolled in the National Executive Institute.

The County Executive will formally submit Acting Chief Jones’ name to the County Council as his nominee for Chief of Police. If approved, Jones will become Montgomery County’s 17th police chief and the third African American to hold the position.

Discover New Places, People and Activities During Montgomery County’s Active Aging Week


Fitness classes are among the free, fun events offered during Montgomery County's Active Aging Week, which takes place the first week of October. Check out what’s happening and plan to participate in a group walk, Tai Chi, book discussion, line dance, card games, yoga, tech class, conversation, pickleball or something else!

Everyone is invited to the Active Aging Week kickoff event from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 2, at Brookside Gardens.The free event includes a stroll around the park and many activity demonstrations such as Zumba and Tai Chi. Food will be available for purchase.

There are dozens of other events happening throughout the week. For a list, visit the County’s senior site and click on “Senior Calendar” (in the left column).

More information is available here.

On the Business Beat



Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich spent the last few weeks of summer on the business beat. He visited several businesses in the County, met with the president of the University of Maryland Baltimore County and addressed the Maryland Women Business Center’s training and networking event at the Kentlands Mansion in Gaithersburg.

Calling All Hoops Fans


Registration for Montgomery County Recreation’s winter basketball clinics and leagues (K – 12) is underway.

Learn the basics of dribbling, passing, shooting and rebounding, as well as the fundamentals of defense. Sign up opportunities will be available the elite programs for the more experienced youth players.

Check out the winter programs online and register today.

September is Suicide Prevention Month

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) there is a death by suicide every 12 minutes. The Journal of Preventive Medicine reports that public safety employees are three times more likely to die from suicide. County staff came together to raise awareness of the risk of suicide on Sept. 18.




The CDC identifies suicide as the second-leading cause of death among school-age youth.

The County, in partnership with Montgomery County Public Schools, launched a suicide prevention campaign in 2017 to highlight information for teens and others about how to help someone who may be thinking about suicide. The website, www.BTheOne.org was designed by local resident Ray Crist and includes information useful for teens, as well as family members and adults.

To learn more about how to help someone in jeoparady of attempting suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. The Montgomery County Crisis Center also offers free 24-hour telephone and walk-in help at 1301 Piccard Drive, Rockville.

Montgomery County Sports Hall of Fame Inducts First Class


More than 200 people attended the inaugural ceremonies of the new Montgomery County Hall of Fame at the Silver Spring Civic Building. County Executive Marc Elrich was among the speakers and sportscaster Dave Johnson emceed the event.

The Class of 2019 included four-time Olympic medal-winning gymnast Dominique Dawes; five-time Olympic gold medalist swimmer Katie Ledecky; Maryland’s all-time winningest high school football coach Bob Milloy; Churchill High School alumnus and member of the U.S. Soccer Hall of Fame Bruce Murray; former NFL and Springbrook High School star Shawn Springs and late Baseball Hall of Fame pitcher Walter Johnson.

Ultimate Guide to Fall Festivities in Montgomery County from Visit Montgomery


The leaves are starting to change, the air is crisper and pumpkin-spiced treats are popping up everywhere. That’s right – fall is here and Visit Montgomery, MD has a rundown on fall festivals in our area.

September 11, 2019

9-11: We Remember


Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich statement on September 11th Observance:

It has been 18 years since the horrific September 11 terrorist attack. Today we remember the nearly 3,000 victims, including 11 from Montgomery County, who tragically had their lives taken by a senseless act of evil and hatred.

Today, and every day, we here in Montgomery County remember: 
  • William Edward Caswell;
  • Gerald Paul Fisher;
  • Lawrence D. Getzfred;
  • Michele M. Heidenberger;
  • Angela Marie Houtz;
  • Teddington Hamm Moy;
  • Darin H. Pontell;
  • Scott A. Powell;
  • Todd Hayes Reuben;
  • Patricia J. Statz; and
  • Ernest M. Willcher
They were our County brothers and sisters who lost their lives in the attack on the Pentagon.

We remember the bravery of those who heroically fought against their attackers on Flight 93, and the courage of the first responders who charged forward to the rescue, willing to put their lives on the line.

I hope everyone will join me in remembering the victims and their families who continue to grieve and miss their loved ones.

Montgomery County's 9/11 Memorial Park is a place you can go to reflect and pay respect. The park gives tribute to the 11 County residents who lost their lives. The names of these victims are inscribed on a plaque covered by two doors.

Eleven benches located throughout the path are dedicated to each of the victims. Family members chose the inscription to honor and reflect on the character of the person. The park is located at the corner of East Jefferson and Maryland Ave. in Rockville.


Ribbon-cutting Opens Montgomery County’s First Combined Library and Community Recreation Center


Hundreds of residents turned out to celebrate the ribbon-cutting for the Wheaton Library and Community Recreation Center and Wheaton Local Park. The 92,000-square foot building, located at 11701 Georgia Ave., is the County’s first combined multiplex to include a library, community recreation center, Friends of the Library bookstore, and local park.

The multifaceted design blends literacy and leisure into a unique facility making it possible to participate in yoga, reading, playground activities, pottery, basketball, story time, purchasing of used books and fitness workouts at a single location.

By sharing the use of spaces such as lobbies, meeting rooms, and restrooms, the facility use is optimized. The high-performance and environmentally-friendly facility will receive at minimum LEED silver certification. Green features include a vegetative planted roof and a high-performance mechanical and lighting system that feature LED lights, controls and sensors.

More information about the new facility is available here.

Kids and Adults Can Invent the Future at FutureFest on Sunday, Sept. 15


Kids can spark their imaginations and families can celebrate their collective power to invent the future from noon to 5 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 15. This free family event takes place at the Silver Spring Civic Building located at Veterans Plaza.

FutureFest features hands-on activities that build skills, in addition to innovative and immersive cultural exhibits designed to inspire kids and adults alike.

More information, including a full schedule is available on the website.

September is National Preparedness Month


September is National Preparedness Month, and it is a good time for you and your loved ones to prepare for an emergency. Montgomery County’s Office of Emergency Management and Homeland Security (OEMHS) joins with the Federal Emergency Management Agency in promoting this year’s national preparedness campaign themed "Prepared, Not Scared."

OEMHS is providing and supporting dozens of events throughout the month to help residents with emergency planning. The 2019 national preparedness campaign has four unique themes:
  • Sept. 1 - 7: Save Early for Disaster Costs
  • Sept. 8 - 14: Make a Plan to Prepare for Disasters
  • Sept. 15 - 21: Teach Youth to Prepare for Disasters
  • Sept. 22 – 30: Get Involved in Your Community’s Preparedness
The Montgomery County Business Connect program will present a workshop titled, “When Disaster Strikes – A Guide to Preparing Businesses”. This free workshop led by OEMHS experts will take place at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 18, at the Upcounty Regional Services Center located at 12900 Middlebrook Road Germantown.

Small businesses are especially vulnerable to disaster with 43 percent of businesses impacted by a disaster never reopening and 29 percent closing permanently within two years of a disaster. The class will help ensure you are prepared to react and recover when the unexpected happens.

Many Single-Use Plastic Drink Cups Surprisingly Cannot Be Recycled

Football season and endless fall events often lead to many types of parties. However, those who are environmentally conscious and intend to recycle single-use plastic drink cups made from polystyrene (often blue or red) should be aware that those cups are not recyclable in many jurisdictions, including Montgomery County.

In fact, placing cups in recycling bins that have No. 6 recycling symbols on the bottom cause interruptions in the recycling process because—like other items designated as unacceptable for Montgomery County recycling—they must be manually separated from recyclable items.

Montgomery has become a national leader in recycling. The County has improved its waste reduction and recycling rate to more than 60 percent of all solid waste generated. However, some items that can appear suitable for recycling should instead be placed in the trash.

The plastics industry has a voluntary system in which plastics are categorized into seven categories by Resin Identification Codes (RIC). They are classified by numbers 1 through 7. In Montgomery County and many other jurisdictions, No. 6 plastics cannot be recycled. The RIC numbers of many plastic items, including most cups, can be found on the bottom of the items.

Many cups that are red and blue on the outside and white on the inside are made of polystyrene or No. 6 plastic and cannot be recycled. In addition, some other single-use cups are made of No. 6 plastic and cannot be recycled.

DEP Director Adam Ortiz urges residents to use recyclable alternatives, such as cups made of No. 1 or No. 5 plastics—or made of recyclable paper in this video.

More information about the Montgomery County recycling program can be found on the DEP website.

Rebuilt Gold Mine Road Bridge in Brookeville Dedicated


Commuters in Brookeville now have a new bridge on Gold Mine Road over the Hawlings River. The new bridge expands traffic flow from one to two lanes and improves pedestrian and bicycle safety by including an eight-foot wide shared path. The new design alleviates conditions that led to bridge flooding several times a year following heavy rains.

The $3.5 million bridge project, which was supported by funds from the Federal Highway Administration and Montgomery County, was finished on schedule by the Department of Transportation—in time to allow for school buses to pass through the neighborhood for the opening of the 2019-20 school year. The construction on Gold Mine Road—which provides a connection from Georgia Ave. (Route 97) north of Olney to New Hampshire Ave. (Route 650)—required the closure of the road at the bridge location since October 2018.

Read more about the new bridge here.

Friendship Picnic Returns to Wheaton Regional Park on Sunday, Sept. 22


The Friendship Picnic brings people of diverse cultures and faiths together to make new friends and discuss ways to build a better community. The event will take place from noon to 5 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 22, at Wheaton Regional Park, located at 2000 Shorefield Road.

The free picnic will include traditional, Kosher, Halal or vegetarian lunch options. A wide-range of activities for children and adults will include music, dancing, moon bounce, face painting, train rides and much more.  

Registration is strongly encouraged for this free event. More information and registration is available here

Take the 4Business Climate Survey


Do you have an opinion about doing business in or with Montgomery County? Share it!

Montgomery County has launched a new survey, the 4Business Climate Survey, as part of its 4Business: Benchmarking to Be the Best for Business initiative. This is the next step in gathering information to evaluate Montgomery County’s business environment. Responses will help inform the County about actions it can take to encourage businesses to locate, expand and thrive here.  Survey responses will also be used to enhance business and County relations. 

The 4Business Climate Survey includes four sections: general background about businesses; feedback on the business environment in the County; experience with the County procurement requirements; and ease of access to government. There are 55 questions and the survey takes about 20 minutes to complete. The survey was developed with support and input from focus sessions with the business community.

Business owners and residents can find the 4Business Climate Survey by visiting the County’s 4Business website.  The survey will be available on the County’s website through Sept. 30.

Montgomery Parks Reports Elevated Microcystin Levels at Lake Needwood; Visitors Asked to Use Caution

Lake Needwood
Montgomery Parks officials advise residents to use caution when recreating on or near Lake Needwood and Lake Frank located within Rock Creek Regional Park. Testing indicates elevated levels of microcystin, a toxic substance produced by some species of blue-green algae (cyanobacteria), in Lake Needwood. Signs have been posted along the lakes and trails to alert visitors of the elevated microcystin levels.

Microcystin, a hepatotoxin, can cause harm to the liver of humans and pets if ingested. Of particular concern are dogs that are off-leash and may swim and/or drink from the lake, despite park regulations.

Montgomery Parks urges visitors to take the following precautions:
  • Avoid direct contact with water while boating or fishing.
  • Swimming is prohibited in lakes at all times.
  • Keep dogs on leash (as is regularly required at the park) and do not allow them to drink or be in contact with the water.
  • Wash hands thoroughly prior to eating, drinking, or smoking if coming in contact with the water.
  • Only eat properly cooked muscle meat of fish that are caught in the lake.
Recreational activities including boating and fishing will remain open at the lake.

For updates, or more information, visit the Montgomery Parks website.

Learn About 'Thrive Montgomery 2050' at Upcoming Events Around Montgomery County


Staff from the Montgomery County Planning Department will promote “Thrive Montgomery 2050” at several upcoming events in September and October. The objective is to get feedback to update Montgomery County’s General Plan for the future.

Through "Thrive Montgomery 2050", Montgomery Planning is asking for the community’s help to ensure that, over the next 30 years, the County can be a vibrant, welcoming and economically healthy place where all can thrive.  Montgomery County’s existing General Plan was last comprehensively updated in the 1960s.

More information about the events, visit the Thrive Montgomery 2050 website.

Dogs Rule the Pool at Montgomery County Recreation’s Annual Pool Pooch Party



Montgomery County Recreation welcomed dogs to the pool for their end-of-the season annual Pool Pooch Party for a weekend of romping, jumping and splashing. The annual event, held the weekend after Labor Day, give dogs the chance to make a final splash before the pools are cleaned and closed for the outdoor swim season.

Enjoy this photo mix of the tail-wagging fun.

Photo credit: Jenny Dover, Montgomery County Recreation

August 19, 2019

Holiday Schedule for Labor Day


Montgomery County government will observe the following holiday schedule for Labor Day, Monday, Sept. 2:
  • County Offices - closed.
  • Libraries - closed.
  • Alcohol Beverage Services - open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
  • Recreation - aquatics programs and facilities open, however, the Germantown Indoor Swim Center and Kennedy Shriver Aquatic Center are closed for annual maintenance. All recreation centers, senior centers, and administrative offices are closed.
  • Montgomery Parks - visit www.MontgomeryParks.org.
  • Ride On - operates on a Sunday schedule.
  • Ride On Flex - closed.
  • Metrorail and Metrobus - visit www.wmata.com.
  • TRiPS Silver Spring Commuter Store - closed.
  • TRiPS Mobile Commuter Store - closed.
  • County-provided refuse/recycling pickup - No County-provided collection services. After the holiday, County-provided recycling and trash collections will slide one day. The last pickup of the week is scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 7.
  • Shady Grove Processing Facility and Transfer Station - facility closed.
  • Parking at public garages, lots, curbside meters - free.
  • State office and courts - closed.

Montgomery County Executive Elrich Announces Completion of Two-Year Apartment Building Inspection Initiative That is Area’s Most Aggressive for Large Jurisdictions


Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich recently said that the County has completed its two-year initiative to inspect 686 apartment buildings – a new protocol that is the most aggressive among large jurisdictions in the Washington area.

Over the two-year period, the Department of Housing and Community Affairs inspected more than 22,000 apartment units, identified more than 31,000 violations and ensured that 96 percent of the violations were corrected, to date.

The initiative marks the first time that the County has inspected so many apartment buildings in this period and makes the County the leader in identifying and focusing resources on the most problematic buildings as well as implementing such a thorough and systematic enforcement regimen.

Among apartment buildings under this initiative, 65 percent were deemed compliant; 16 percent were deemed “at-risk,” and 19 percent were categorized as “Troubled Properties.” Going forward, every unit in troubled property buildings will be inspected annually to identify and address violations. The remaining apartment buildings will continue to be inspected, but far less intensively, i.e., at least one-fourth of units in the building will be inspected at least every three years.

Read more about this initiative here.

Back-to-School Fair Set for Saturday, Aug. 24


Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) students and their families are invited to Westfield Wheaton for a free MCPS Back-to-School Fair on Saturday, Aug. 24, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Westfield Wheaton is located at 11160 Veirs Mill Road at the intersection of Veirs Mill and University Boulevard in Wheaton. The fair will take place on the lower level throughout the mall, starting near the Dick’s Sporting Goods entrance.

The Back-to-School Fair is a great way to kick off the school year and learn about the school system’s programs and services, along with resources from government agencies and community partners.

There will be free, fun entertainment for the whole family, including children’s activities, health screenings for adults and children, giveaways and more!

Free shuttle bus service to the fair will begin at 9:30 a.m. from Montgomery Blair and John F. Kennedy high schools in Silver Spring, Albert Einstein High School in Kensington, Northwest High School in Germantown, Paint Branch High School in Burtonsville, Watkins Mill High School in Montgomery Village and Carver Educational Services Center at 850 Hungerford Dr. in Rockville.

More information about the fair is available by visiting the website.

Popular Pool Pooch Party Returns to Montgomery County Recreation


Montgomery County Recreation welcomes dogs to the pool for the annual Pool Pooch Party. Our four-legged, canine friends can make a splash at the Sergeant Hector I. Ayala Wheaton-Glenmont Outdoor Pool from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 7 and Sunday, Sept. 8. The facility is located at 12621 Dalewood Drive in Wheaton.

The pool is closed to humans and open to canines with current proof of rabies vaccinations. Dogs can swim, romp and frolic at the pool before it is closed and cleaned for the winter. Each dog must be accompanied by a responsible adult. 

For more information or to register, visit the website.

Register for Fall Recreation and Parks Classes and Programs


Registration is now underway for Montgomery County Recreation and Montgomery Parks activities, classes and programs that are featured in the fall issue of the Guide.

Inside the Guide you will find a wide variety of classes, programs and activities that help you enjoy an active, healthier lifestyle.

Register at ActiveMONTGOMERY.org.

Meeting at Marriott


Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich continued his series of meetings with Washington area business and government leaders when he met with Arne M. Sorenson, the president, and chief executive officer of Bethesda-based Marriott International, Inc. Sorenson presides over one of the world’s largest hospitality companies and some of the most iconic brands in travel. Elrich continues to engage business leaders as he works to elevate the County’s status as Maryland’s economic engine and a leading jurisdiction in the region.

Montgomery County Animal Shelter & Adoption Center Clears the Shelters


Dozens of the homeless animals found permanent homes when Montgomery County Animal Services & Adoption Center participated in NBC and Telemundo owned stations' Clear the Shelters on Aug. 17. This is a nationwide pet adoption effort to find loving homes for animals.  At the end of the day, 89 dogs, cats, guinea pigs, birds, fish, and even a horse found their forever home.


If you missed the date and are looking for a dog there will be a "Clear the Shelters: The Sequel" offered Sept. 5 through 8, which will waive adoption fees for dogs. The event will be sponsored by Friends of Montgomery County Animals.

The Center opens its doors to all animals in need from dogs and cats to farm animals, wildlife, and exotics but the goal is to find a home for these animals. If you are looking for a pet you will want to stop by to see what animals are looking to be adopted. The shelter is located at 7315 Muncaster Mill Road in Derwood. The facility is open Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from noon to 7 p.m. and weekends noon to 5 p.m. To view the adoptable animals or for more information visit the website.



Montgomery County 71st Agricultural Fair

Where in Montgomery County can you find pig races, monster trucks, an alien abduction ride, deep fried candy, beauty queens, a herd of longhorns and decorated toilet and toilet seat contests? If you know it is the Montgomery County Agricultural Fair, then you are likely one of the more than 200,000 residents who attended the fair, which took place Aug. 9 through 17.

More than 1,200 volunteers provided in excess of 30,000 hours to make this the region’s largest agricultural fair.

Enjoy this photo slide show of County Executive Marc Elrich’s visit to the fair.

AG Fair

Best Bets for Your Calendar!


Grammy and Emmy winner Arturo Sandoval Headlines 16th Annual Silver Spring Jazz Festival Saturday, Aug. 24

Grammy award-winning musician Arturo Sandoval will headline the Silver Spring Jazz Festival, which will take place on Saturday, Aug. 24, from 3 to 10 p.m. in Veterans Plaza located at One Veterans Place  

State-of-the-Art Wheaton Library and Community Recreation Center will open on Sunday, Sept. 8
The ribbon-cutting ceremony for the Wheaton Library and Community Recreation Center will take place at 2 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 8.

August 5, 2019

Grammy and Emmy Winner Arturo Sandoval Headlines 16th Annual Silver Spring Jazz Festival Saturday, Aug. 24

Grammy award-winning musician Arturo Sandoval will headline the Silver Spring Jazz Festival, which will take place on Saturday, Aug. 24, from 3 to 10 p.m. in Veterans Plaza located at One Veterans Place. 

New this year, the Jazz Festival is scheduled the weekend before the Labor Day holiday to make it the County’s end-of-the-summer celebration.

Arturo Sandoval, a protégé of the legendary jazz master Dizzy Gillespie, was born in Artemisa, a small town in the outskirts of Havana, Cuba, in 1949. Just two years earlier Gillespie became the first musician to bring Latin influences into American jazz. Sandoval began studying classical trumpet at the age of 12 and has evolved into one of the world’s most acknowledged guardians of jazz trumpet and flugel horn, as well as a renowned classical artist, pianist and composer.

Sandoval has won four Grammy Awards, six Billboard Awards and an Emmy Award for his composing work on the entire underscore of the HBO movie based on his life, “For Love or Country,” which starred Andy Garcia. He recently performed on the Grammy Awards broadcast with pop-phenomenon Justin Timberlake, as well as on the Latin Billboard Awards with the gifted Alicia Keys. At those ceremonies, he was awarded his sixth Billboard Award for “Best Latin Jazz Album.”

Silver Spring has earned a reputation of being one of the most diverse and dynamic communities in the country, where there is always something to do and enjoy. Activities and events embrace the Arts & Entertainment District’s culture of being a welcoming community that values vibrant arts and diverse experiences.

Elrich Fills More Key Positions

When the Montgomery County Council confirmed Angela Talley as the first African American woman to lead the County’s Department of Correction and Rehabilitation (DOCR) – nationally recognized for its work in the fight against recidivism. Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich moved another step closer to filling all vacancies in his administration.

The Council also recently confirmed Elrich’s nominations for the director of the County’s Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS); the director and deputy director of the Department of Housing and Community Affairs (DHCA); and the director for the County’s Office of Human Resources (OHR).

The list of confirmed appointees is as follows –

DHCA Director Aseem Nigam – Nigam has more than 26 years of results-driven experience in housing finance and development, and quantitative research and evaluation. He joins the County after working in Fairfax, Va., where he was the director of Real Estate Finance and Grants Management for the Fairfax County Redevelopment & Housing Authority.

DHCA Deputy Director Frank Demarais – Having accrued a broad range of responsibilities in the housing industry since 1979, including local and national program development, management of mortgage loan products and affordable housing development, Demarais joins the County after having served as the Home Purchase Assistance Program Manager at the Washington, D.C. Department of Housing and Community Development.

DHHS Director Raymond Crowel – Crowel has more than 30 years of experience leading senior-level teams and partnerships in creating and managing services that address complex health and human service needs. He served as chief of DHHS’ Behavioral Health and Crisis Services for the past 10 years, leading staff in the implementation of core behavioral health, substance abuse and crisis services. In this role, he jointly established and co-chaired the County’s Opioid Intervention Team, a cross-departmental effort to coordinate data-driven efforts to reduce opioid overdoses and addiction. Recently, he helped broker a public-private partnership to design, build and operate a new addiction-treatment facility, which is currently under construction, on the site of the Avery Road Treatment Center.

DOCR Director Angela Talley – Since joining the County in 1990, including two years with DHHS and 27 with DOCR, Talley has years of management oversight of adult correctional facilities, Pre-Trial Services and juvenile justice programs. She also has expertise in management; corrections; criminal justice; Pre-Trial Services and Pre-Trial Reform; court and jail diversion; correctional facility operations; correctional program and services; offender work force development and work release; accreditation; administration; human resource management; labor relations and case management services. Talley had been serving as acting director since her predecessor, Rob Green, departed in May 2019 to be the head of the State’s Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services.

OHR Director Berke Atilla – Recognized by The Daily Record as one of the 2018 Very Important Professionals Successful Before 40 in Maryland, Atilla has expertise in executive management; human capital development; financial analysis; budgeting; asset management; change management; business improvement; and performance management and measurement. Atilla joins the County from the City of Baltimore where he was the CFO and chief of the Office of Fiscal and Strategic Management for the city’s Department of General Services.

Remaining vacancies include the chief of the Montgomery County Police Department, as well as directors for the County’s Public Libraries, Department of Permitting Services, Department of Finance and the Department of Technology Services. Though not department directors, Elrich will also nominate a Chief Equity Officer and a Chief Digital Officer. All appointments require confirmation by the County Council.


Now Hiring in Montgomery County

Montgomery County Recreation is hosting two job fairs for those looking for part-time employment to work at the new community recreation center opening in Wheaton in September. The jobs fairs will be held at the Recreation Administrative Office, located at 4010 Randolph Road in Silver Spring.

The dates of the fairs:
  • Wednesday, Aug. 7, from 6:30 - 8 p.m.
  • Saturday, Aug. 10, from 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.
Call Montgomery County Recreation at 240-777-4980 for more information.

The United States Census Bureau is recruiting staff for Census 2020. The Census Bureau will hire hundreds of census takers in the County. Temporary jobs include census takers, recruiting assistants, office staff and supervisory staff.

Visit the website or call 1-855-JOB-2020 for more information. The pay rate for census jobs in Montgomery County is available here.

Elrich Announces Record Year of Finance through Montgomery County’s Housing Initiative Fund


Montgomery County’s Housing Initiative Fund (HIF) invested $103.7 million– the highest level of financing in its 30-year history – to generate 3,254 apartment units, including 1,982 units that are affordable to those with income up to 60 percent of the County average.

This year’s HIF funding was invested in 22 apartment buildings (12 existing and 10 new). The County’s Department of Housing and Community Affairs attributes this year’s record level of financing to the following:
  • The agency’s focus on preserving market rate affordable housing, especially properties that come through the Right of First Refusal
  • Several new construction projects closed – interest rates are good now
  • Preservation of existing affordable housing – several Low-Income Housing Tax Credit properties became available through the Right of First Refusal

County Expands Its Support of Local Businesses With New Silver Spring Business Connect Location


Montgomery County’s Business Solutions Group expanded its Business Connect program to the Silver Spring regional area on Monday, Aug. 5.

The Business Connect program is offered in several locations in the Silver Spring regional area including the Long Branch Community Center, the Long Branch Library, and the Silver Spring Library. The Business Connect program is managed by the Business Solutions Group, which includes the County’s small business navigator and business liaison officers.

For contact information, business starter kits, resources and more, visit the Montgomery County Business Portal.

As One Path to Homeownership, Elrich Wants Homebuyers to be Aware of a Potential Funding Source


As part of Montgomery County’s ongoing efforts to provide more paths to homeownership, the County has committed $1 million in Fiscal Year 2020 to this program with the state of Maryland. 

Residents are encouraged to apply for the Montgomery Homeownership Program of down payment assistance. Applicants who qualify and are approved for the Montgomery Homeownership Program may access Down Payment Assistance loans in amounts up to $25,000 – or up to 40 percent of the household income of the prospective homeowner – whichever is less. Funds may be used for down payment or closing costs. Approved buyers also will receive a competitive rate Maryland Mortgage Program Loan to help complete their home buying process.

For more information or to apply, visit the Montgomery Homeownership Program.

State-of-the-Art Wheaton Library and Community Recreation Center will open on Sunday, Sept. 8


The ribbon-cutting ceremony for the Wheaton Library and Community Recreation Center will take place at 2 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 8. The date and time for the ceremony have been updated due to a schedule change.

The $70.9 million project and 92,000-square foot building is located at 11701 Georgia Avenue. This is the first combined complex of its kind in Montgomery County. It will include a library, community recreation center, Friends of the Library used bookstore, a park, underground parking garage, and redesigned roadway.

The facility will open immediately after the ceremony.

Information about the facility is available on the Department of General Services website.

Community Forum Focuses on Eliminating Hate and Violence


Community members are invited to participate in a community forum aimed to confront and understand our past related to hate and violence in the County to work toward a stronger future. The forum is scheduled for at 6:45 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 7 at the Silver Spring Civic Building located at One Veterans Plaza in Silver Spring. “Remembering the Past to Protect the Future” is the theme for the event hosted by Montgomery County’s Human Rights Commission, the Office of Human Rights, the Department of Police and the Committee Against Hate/Violence.

Read more about the event here.

Montgomery County's Department of Environmental Protection Searching for New Site for Larger, Modernized Recycling Facility


Montgomery County, recognized as a national leader in solid waste management, continues to look for ways to improve the overall recycling rate. While other jurisdictions across the nation are reconsidering aspects of their recycling programs, the County continues its commitment to increase recycling and reduce trash.

Aiming for zero waste, the County is working toward expanding recycling opportunities that may include partnerships with other local jurisdictions, addressing food waste processing and expanding recycling operations to likely include optical sorters and robotics.

The County is searching to find industrial properties that would allow expansion and modernization of its recycling operations. In advance of the master plan completion, the County is seeking expressions of interest for one or multiple sites that would be available to expand the County Materials Recovery Facility operations. Submissions are to be forwarded by 3 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 20. Details of the solicitation are available here.

Business Incubation Network ‘1776’ is Opening First Maryland Location in Montgomery County


Earlier this month, "1776" announced it is partnering with the 100,000-plus square foot Greencourt Innovation Center to launch a new 15,000 square-foot hub for startups at 12358 Parklawn Drive in North Bethesda. The incubator campus is expected to open later this year.

1776 @ Greencourt Innovation Center is actively seeking collaborations with corporations, organizations, government agencies and stakeholders in Montgomery County.

In a press release, Greencourt co-founders Matthew Chervenak and Stephany Yu said the 1776 @ Greencourt Innovation Center will help build and sustain a community of entrepreneurs and innovators who are translating new ideas into products, services and ventures.

For more information about the Greencourt Innovation Center, visit its website.

Elrich, Rice and Rutherford Working to Address Mental Health Needs


County Executive Marc Elrich joined by Maryland Lt. Governor Rutherford and Montgomery Councilmember Craig Rice to address the County’s mental health needs at a recent meeting. Video courtesy of Montgomery College.

July 15, 2019

Tell Us What is on Your Mind: County Residents Encouraged to Participate in Community Survey


We want to hear from you! Do you have a few minutes to share your thoughts and perspectives on local government, its services and quality of life?

The County’s online survey, open through Friday, July 19, can be taken in English, Spanish or Chinese.

The 2019 Resident Survey was mailed to 5,000 randomly selected County households in the first week of June. Residents who did not receive the questionnaire in the mail are encouraged to participate online.

County Remembers Homeless Individuals at Third Annual Memorial Service



A recent memorial service remembered 31 individuals who died in the past year while homeless, or who were previously homeless and received County and nonprofit services. The names of the individuals were read by nonprofit organizations who work with the County to provide services. Those who died were remembered as not just a ‘homeless’ person, but as a community member.

In the annual Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments’ Point-in-Time survey conducted in Jan. 2019, there were 647 persons experiencing homelessness in Montgomery County and 85 families with children. Since 2017, there has been a 28 percent decrease in the overall number of persons experiencing homelessness, the most significant decrease in any two-year period since 2009.

Montgomery County achieved the goal of ending veteran homelessness in Dec. 2015 and continues to work to maintain functional zero homelessness through continual monitoring and tracking.

In 2017, the Interagency Commission on Ending Homelessness launched "Inside (Not Outside)," an initiative aimed at ending chronic homelessness in the County. Through the efforts of Montgomery County’s Department of Health and Human Services and nonprofit providers in the community such as Bethesda Cares, Catholic Charities, Coalition for the Homeless and Interfaith Works, 420 individuals have been placed in permanent supportive housing.

A current focus is on ending homelessness for families with children.

More information about services for the homeless and data on progress made is available at montgomerycountymd.gov/homelessness.

Brookside Gardens Celebrates 50 Years


Brookside Gardens recently celebrated its 50th anniversary. Brookside Gardens opened on July 13, 1969. Five decades later, Brookside Gardens attracts more than 400,000 visitors annually and features permanent and seasonal displays and two conservatories. It hosts engaging events and programs, including the Wings of Fancy Live Butterfly and Caterpillar exhibit and the Garden of Lights display.

For more information, visit the Montgomery Parks website.

Registration Is Open for County’s Thanksgiving Parade

Montgomery County is accepting applications to participate in the televised Montgomery County Thanksgiving Parade in Downtown Silver Spring. The County is looking for interesting and talented community groups and other organizations to march in the parade.

The Saturday before Thanksgiving is the one day of the year when the Downtown Silver Spring streets are overrun with turkeys, dinosaurs, penguins, reindeer, marching bands, dancing groups, floats, balloons, and Santa.

Applications to participate are due by Monday, Sept. 23.

The Montgomery County Thanksgiving Parade will be held on Saturday, Nov. 23 beginning at 10 a.m. For more information, visit the Downtown Silver Spring website.

Transfer Station Now Accepting Credit and Debit Cards for Tipping Fees



The Montgomery County Shady Grove Processing Facility and Transfer Station now accepts credit cards to pay for tipping fees. Previously, only cash and checks were accepted. The fees primarily impact commercial users with trash loads or yard waste loads of 500 pounds or more.

All major credit cards are accepted including debit cards, American Express, and Apple Pay.

The current fees for trash loads exceeding 500 pounds is $60 per ton. The fees for materials delivered for disposal in open-top roll-off boxes (for all amounts) is $70 per ton. The fees for yard waste exceeding 500 pounds is $46 per ton.

More information is available in the press release.

Community Forum Focuses on Eliminating Hate and Violence from the County


Community members are invited to participate in a community forum aimed to confront and understand our past related to hate and violence in the County so we can work together on the shared goal of building a more unified, cohesive community.

The forum is scheduled for Wednesday, Aug. 7, at 6:45 p.m. at the Silver Spring Civic Building located at One Veterans Plaza. “Remembering the Past to Protect the Future” will be hosted by Montgomery County’s Human Rights Commission, the Office of Human Rights, the Department of Police and the Committee Against Hate/Violence.

The program will include film screenings of “This Little Light of Mine: The Legacy of Fannie Lou Hamer,” a documentary by Robin Hamilton of ARound Robin Productions and “Burning: The Lynching of George Armwood,” a documentary by Will Schwarz.

Following the documentaries, Schwarz, a Baltimore-based filmmaker, video producer and founder of the Maryland Lynching Memorial Project, will provide a brief overview of the Maryland Lynching Memorial Project, Inc. In addition, local historian and The Menare Foundation, Inc. President Anthony Cohen will discuss lynchings that took place in the County. James Stowe, the director of Human Rights will give a brief overview of the County’s current Remembrance Lynching Activities. A Police Department representative will present the current status of county hate crimes.

Human Rights Commissioner and Montgomery County Human Rights Hall of Fame member Terry Vann will moderate a panel discussion and a question and answer segment.

Stowe and Schwarz will be joined on the panel by Acting Police Chief Marcus Jones; Anthony Cohen; and Willie Pearl Mackie King, who transcribed Dr. Martin Luther King’s letter from the Birmingham Jail.

More information about the event is available in the press release.

June 26, 2019

Holiday Schedule for Independence Day

      Montgomery County government will observe the following holiday schedule for Independence          Day.
  • County Offices - closed.
  • Libraries - closed.
  • Department of Liquor Control retail stores - all stores open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
  • Recreation - Aquatics programs and facilities open. The Germantown Indoor Swim Center closes at 3 p.m. All other pools close at 6 p.m. All recreation centers, senior centers and administrative offices are closed.
  • Montgomery Parks - visit www.MontgomeryParks.org.
  • Ride On - operates on a Saturday schedule.
  • Metrorail and Metrobus - Information available at www.wmata.com.
  • TRiPS Commuter Store (Silver Spring) - open from 10 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.
  • TRiPS Mobile Commuter Store - closed.
  • County-provided refuse/recycling pickup - no County-provided collection services will occur on this day. After the holiday, all County-provided recycling and trash collections will slide and be one day later than normal with the last pickup on Saturday.
  • Shady Grove Processing Facility and Transfer Station - entire facility closed.
  • Parking at garages, lots, curbside meters -free.
  • State offices and courts – closed.

County’s Independence Day Celebrations Feature Fireworks and Free Concerts in Germantown and Kensington


Montgomery County Recreation will host two Independence Day fireworks displays on Thursday, July 4.
  • Germantown Glory will be held at the South Germantown Recreational Park located at 18041 Central Park Circle in Germantown (Boyds). The event kicks off at 7 p.m. with a concert by Quiet Fire, a soul, rhythm and blues and rock band that covers hits from the 1960s, 70s and 80s.
  • Mid-County Sparkles takes place at Albert Einstein High School located at 11135 Newport Road in Kensington. The festivities begin at 7:30 p.m. with a concert by Bobby & the Believers, a Motown and rock and roll cover band.
The fireworks will begin at approximately 9:15 p.m. The timing of the fireworks may change due to weather conditions. Low lawn chairs, blankets and coolers are welcome at both events. Food vendors will serve both locations. Alcoholic beverages are not permitted. The rain date for the fireworks only is July 5.

Montgomery County Recreation thanks its sponsors - the Maryland Soccerplex, Montgomery Parks and Westfield Wheaton - for their support.

More information about the celebrations, including parking information, is available on the Montgomery County Recreation website.

New Taxpayer Receipt Module on Website

 https://www.montgomerycountymd.gov/tax-receipt

Recently Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich unveiled the County’s new “Taxpayer Receipt.” The County is the first jurisdiction in the region to implement this online tool that enables taxpayers to see how their estimated local income and property taxes will support budgeted services for the Fiscal Year 2020 (July 1, 2019 - June 30, 2020).

Taxpayers can enter their estimated income into the module and, if they own a home, its estimated value will be displayed in an itemized list that indicates how tax dollars are utilized by the County for education, public safety, transportation, and other services.

Visit montgomerycountymd.gov/tax-receipt to view your taxpayer receipt. 

What You Need to Know About County Executive Marc Elrich’s Economic Vision


Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich recently presented his vision for economic development to the County Council.

Economic Vision
Focuses on building a modern economy that encourages entrepreneurship, moves people and goods efficiently, develops today’s and tomorrow’s workforce, reduces burdensome regulations and promotes opportunity for all.

Five components of Elrich’s economic vision include:
  1. Creating a robust transportation system to move people, goods and data efficiently for doing business. Elrich’s transportation team is working to advance a Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system as quickly and efficiently as possible, and is supporting innovation, including the pilot FLEX microtransit program. Elrich is working to gain support for the addition of two reversible lanes on I-270, and he is working with state and regional partners to support Metro.
  2. Better development of our workforce. Education is an integral part of the County’s economic development infrastructure from early childhood development to lifelong learning to attracting young families and to matching jobs with available talent.
  3. Enhancing entrepreneurship. The Elrich administration is reviewing its overall entrepreneurial climate and strategy – including a look at its three existing incubators. They are also focused on branding the County better to promote the rich array of available assets and to connect local businesses with resources and services.
  4. Engaging cooperatively with business leaders and business owners around the County to identify what they need to thrive in Montgomery County.
  5. Tracking our progress: measuring the performance of the County, its Economic Development Corporation and WorkSource Montgomery for results.
During the first six months of his administration, Elrich hosted six 4Business listening sessions; personally visited local companies; made procurement more user friendly; opened the Business Connect hub at the Upcounty Regional Services Center; and drafted the Small Business Strategic Plan.

In the coming weeks and months, the Silver Spring Business Connect hub will open and two roundtable charrettes are planned later this year as part of the 4Business: Benchmarking to Be the Best for Business initiative. Elrich encourages the business community to send their input about doing business in Montgomery County to 4business@montgomerycountymd.gov by August 31.

Montgomery County Government is Hiring


Looking for a fulfilling career that offers a competitive salary and excellent benefits? Montgomery County has dozens of open positions in rewarding positions. County employees serve an essential community need while building a thriving career.

With more than 30 departments, there are potential career opportunities in areas including executive/managerial; public safety; health and human services; labor and trades; administrative and more.

More important, than filling positions is finding the right fit for the position. Montgomery County hires team members who value innovation and inclusiveness and reflect the County’s culture of serving with integrity and purpose.

While Montgomery County employees come from around the globe, a preponderance of the County’s workforce comes from within our community. County residents are encouraged to regularly visit the Office of Human Resources' recently redesigned recruitment website to see available positions, which are updated often.

For more information on the process, visit the application tutorial resource.

Elrich Appointee Raymond Crowel to Serve as Director of County’s Department of Health and Human Services

County Executive Marc Elrich (L) and Director
of Health and Human Services Raymond Crowel (R)
Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich has appointed Raymond Crowel to serve as the new director for the County’s Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The nomination was unanimously confirmed by County Council on Tuesday, June 24.

Crowell has more than 30 years of experience leading senior level teams and partnerships in creating and managing service systems that effectively and efficiently address complex human service needs. He has extensive experience in managing the needs of vulnerable populations including children and families involved in the child welfare system youth and adults involved in the justice system as well as the immigrant and ethnically diverse communities.

Crowell served as the chief of behavioral health and crisis services with the Department of HHS for the past 10 years.

The mission of the Department of Health and Human Services is to promote and ensure the health and safety of the residents of Montgomery County and to build individual and family strength and self-sufficiency.

With more than 3,000 employees and 120 programs, HHS is the County’s largest department. The agency is responsible for public health and human services that help address the needs of Montgomery County’s most vulnerable children, adults and seniors. The department’s core services protect the community’s health, protect the health and safety of at-risk children and vulnerable adults, and address basic human needs including food, shelter and clothing.

Dynamic Ride On Flex On-Demand Service Reshaping How Residents Get Around


Montgomery County’s first public microtransit service, Ride On Flex, launched on Wednesday, June 26. This dynamic on-demand service offers new and affordable transportation options in the Rockville and Glenmont/Wheaton service areas. The no-fixed-route, no-fixed-schedule service will reshape the way some residents think about getting around in the served areas.

Riders can request trips from a designated pick up location to a drop-off location within the same service zone using a mobile app. The Ride On Flex app is available for free download from the Apple or Google store.

An 11-passenger bus will provide service within the pre-defined geographical zones at specific times of the day. Riders will be given an estimated time for pick up and drop off and directed to a nearby location. Flex will operate in the Rockville zone from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. and in the Glenmont/Wheaton zone during peak periods (6 to 9 a.m. and 3:30 to 7 p.m.). The zones offer connections between households, transit hubs, commercial centers and public services.

Riders will pay no more than $2 for the service, as current Ride On fares will apply. While users will book a ride using the app, they will pay the fare as they board the bus, just as with any Ride On service.

Read more on the MCDOT Ride On Flex website.

Department of Liquor Control Gets New Name

The County’s Department of Liquor Control officially changed the name to Alcohol Beverage Services (ABS) on July 1.

The new name reflects the department’s continued improvements to the ongoing business model, which modernizes and embraces the department’s commitment to customer service.

The rebranding spotlights the strategic business changes such as investments in new technology and infrastructure and streamlined updated processes that elevate customer services and communication.

ABS better defines the department’s work. The use of “alcohol beverage” was chosen over “liquor” because the department sells beer and wine in addition to liquor as part of its wholesale and retail operations.

The use of “services” instead of “control” emphasizes the customer service-oriented relationships the County department has worked hard to cultivate.

The department’s rebranding also includes a new tagline: A Business of Montgomery County Government.

The Maryland General Assembly approved the name change in its 2019 session.

More information is available on the department’s website.

2019 Farm Tour and Harvest Sale: Farm Life, Fresh Produce and Family Fun,


Save the dates! The 30th annual Montgomery County Farm Tour returns to the Agricultural Reserve on Saturday, July 27 and Sunday, July 28.

There are 19 participating farms on this year’s tour. Connect with nature and start a family tradition by picking your own produce, meeting the animals, learning about farming practices and more.

For the latest Farm Tour information, visit the Montgomery County Office of Agriculture website.

Whiskey Rocks Event Sets Single-Day Sales Record

The Montgomery County Department of Liquor Control (DLC) set a one-day store record of more than $116,000 in sales during the Whiskey Rocks celebration on June 14, which was held at the Burtonsville retail store located at 15620 Old Columbia Pike.

The whiskey celebration attracted hundreds of customers to taste and purchase hard to find whiskey products. Dozens of customers lined up the day before the event to be at the front of the line when the retail store opened.

Some of the sought-after whiskeys available for purchase at this event included: Elijah Craig 18-Year, Michter’s Barrel Strength, Mister Sam Tribute, Blood Oath Pact No. 5 and Old Fitzgerald 13-Year Bottled-in-Bond.

In addition, the Whiskey Rocks celebration featured tastings, raffles, a free lunch sponsored by Buffalo Trace, free seminars and special barrel releases that kept consumers engaged throughout much of the day. The night before the event, Dogfish Head Alehouse hosted a whiskey dinner at its Gaithersburg location, which was billed as part of the DLC’s Whiskey Rocks event.

All profits earned by the DLC are transferred to the Montgomery County General Fund supporting police and fire, transportation projects and other public services that tax dollars would otherwise fund.

The next Whiskey Rocks events is planned for January of 2020. To receive updates about upcoming DLC events, product lotteries and sales, visit the DLC’s website. 

Free Business Counseling Available and More


Business Connect, a program of the County’s Business Solutions Group, offers free one-on-one business counseling at the Upcounty Regional Services Center, located at 12900 Middlebrook Road in Germantown.

Sessions with experienced business counselors are available by appointment. Visit the Montgomery County Business Portal for a calendar of business events and workshops and to schedule your session.

The Business Portal calendar includes a full range of workshops on a variety of business topics to help you grow your business.