11 October 1999 | Approved: 8 November 1999
Mayor John Compton called the meeting to order at 7:36 p.m. In attendance were Councilors Dave Gumula, Paris Pacchione, Nick Suzich, Dodie Tippens, Carol Uhlendorf and Allen Winter. Gaithersburg Gazette reporter Lori Launi was also present. In the absence of Town Clerk Mary Challstrom, Kathie Evans recorded minutes.
Approval of Minutes
Carol Uhlendorf moved, Paris Pacchione seconded, that the Town Council minutes of September 13, 1999 be approved. Vote: 6-0.
In the absence of Town Treasurer Mary Challstrom, Mayor Compton read the treasurer’s report. Dodie Tippens moved, Carol Uhlendorf seconded, acceptance of the Treasurer’s report. Vote: 6-0.
Mayor Compton announced the following:
- The mayor attended the Shady Grove Alliance meeting at which development and road expansion were discussed. Mary Wells is the newest member.
- The mayor attended the County Council Town Meeting held in Nancy Dacek’s district. Development in the Upper County was discussed indicating that roadways and schools are "behind the curve".
- Maryland Parole and Probation office is not moving to Oakmont Avenue.
- Phil Edwards will be at Town Hall on 10/24 for a book signing party.
- The 5th Annual Montgomery County Diversity Day Observance will be on Wednesday 10/27.
- On 10/18 a Town Meeting including our delegates and States Attorney Gansler will be held at the Gaithersburg library.
- Brown Street paving is finished – don’t know if the curbing has been done. Water drainage was rebuilt and we will watch closely to maintain.
- Center Street repaving has not begun.
- Beautification plea has not been responded to yet.
- Regarding the annexation of Washington Grove Hills:
- the residents are going to be polled.
- after all residents have been contacted, we will talk about the result at the next meeting.
- The Prime Choice is operating in violation of our ordinances. A letter was drafted by Town Attorney Bill Roberts (see attached). Allen Winter moved to support the intent of the letter. Dave Gumula recommended stronger language in the letter. The mayor suggested that the council has the firm intention not to amend the ordinances. Paris Pacchione seconded Allen’s motion. Vote: 6-0.
Allen Winter Allen Winter presented a detailed report on the Planning Commission’s activities (see attached).
With regard to the Atlantis proposal, Dave Gumula suggested that Bill Roberts, Town Attorney, should respond to their letter. The mayor agreed. Dave also stated a concern with including special retail store as a special exception. Dodie Tippens wondered if the criteria for denial, which were drafted at Bobbie Gallagher’s suggestion, would be published. Since Atlantis Associates want to know what uses are allowed, the Mayor urged the Commission to advise as to what the “width of the parameters” would be. Allen Winter wanted to know if the Commission should further define what is in the text? Kathie Evans, speaking as a town resident, suggested that the town be as specific as possible so as to avoid further problems-i.e. lawsuits. Dave Gumula issued a concern that the Council should be closely involved in this matter rather than allowing the Planning Commission to make final decisions. Allen said that we need a good relationship with Atlantis. He urged the Council to look at the list of allowed/disallowed uses to see if the Council agrees. The mayor summed up by saying that the Planning Commission should handle the Atlantis response but the Council should see it and approve it.
Allen Winter proceeded to discuss the Planning Commission report. With regard to the Ellis group request, the mayor said that this decision might affect the Casey property i.e. if this is a dense development then Casey might follow suit. The mayor suggested that traffic on Ridge Road might also be a problem. Allen Winter said that Washington Grove Hills would get the same idea.
Allen Winter stated that a report detailing public safety issues and concerns is being drafted for discussion next month.
Carol Uhlendorf reported that three subcommittees have been set up including a tree inventory subcommittee, a tree-planting subcommittee, and a McCathran Hall landscaping subcommittee.
Carol Uhlendorf reported that P.J. Hogan, Paul Carlson and Joan Stern will come to the town council meeting on 11/8 at 7:00 p.m. Alex Foster, state’s attorney for this area, will come to the December meeting.
Town Hall Improvements
Carol Uhlendorf reported that path lighting should be reinstalled around the Town Hall. Also Carol is in contact with Ed Mroczka regarding the window replacement. Allen and Paris commented that the overall lighting needs to be improved. Also Nick Suzich is checking into obtaining more tables.
Dodie Tippens reported that the Mousetrap Concert Series is almost sold out. 50 out of 100 Millenium Dance tickets have been sold. Doris Gordon will be the conductor of the Christmas concert. Santa Claus on a Fire Engine will be featured at holiday time – the mayor needs to write a letter requesting this Santa. Newcomer’s Welcome Packet is not yet complete.
Dodie Tippens reported that the pump is off for the winter and bids to do the dredging for the diving board are being obtained. In addition, Dodie reported that a citizen complained that the sacred circle is not being properly maintained. Public safety also said that citizens would be approached if their shrubs obscured key street signs – e.g. stop signs.
Nick Suzich reported that the leaf contract was renewed and that important pick-up dates should be in the bulletin. Nick is working on the snow contract.
Nick Suzich reported that new equipment will be obtained for toddlers. The signboard near the soccer field is being worked on so that ordinances and permits may be permanently posted.
Paris Pacchione reported that Ed Roberts and Allen Winter attended the first painting work session on the Maintenance Shop. Tree removal has begun at selected spots in town. JoAnne Negola received permission to plan a Japanese maple in memory of Polly Buel near the “little girl” memorial. Guidelines for memorials need to be established.
Dave Gumula reported that the book signing party by Phil Edwards is scheduled for 10/24 at 4:00 to 6:00 p.m.
Roads and Walkways
Dave Gumula reported that they are working on EMT vehicle requirements. A Request for Proposals for Center Street and Ridge Road repair is being drafted. Center Street is next to be worked on.
The mayor proposed that a Forest Management and Improvement Committee be formed. A study committee is needed and the mayor mentioned several people who he might approach to serve on the committee. Allen Winter moved to establish a Forest Management and Improvement committee. Paris Pacchione seconded the motion. Vote: 6-0.
The next meeting will be at 7:00 p.m. on 11/8.
The meeting was adjourned at 10:40 p.m.