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
  • Ride On - operates on a Sunday schedule.
  • Ride On Flex - closed.
  • Metrorail and Metrobus - visit
  • 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

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.