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5 December 2019 | Approved: 6 February 2019

Peter Nagrod called the meeting to order at 7:30 p.m. In attendance were Commissioners Charlie Challstrom, Jon Cohen, Georgette Cole, Dave Hix and Deb Mehlferber. Also present were HPC Chair Bob Booher, Robert Johnson and Bruce Rothrock.

Approval of Agenda:

Georgette Cole moved to approve the agenda. Dave Hix seconded the motion. The Commission added a Municipal Cable questionnaire to New Business. Approved: 5-0.

Building Permit Applications:

There were none.

Public Appearances:

Bruce Rothrock came to asked three (3) questions:

  1. Where does the Border Committee fit in with the Master Plan work?
  2. What work is being done about the pedestrian crossing at the Commercial Corner in terms of safety?
  3. Where does the proposed bike path connection fit in with the Master Plan work?

Chairman Nagrod reported the pedestrian crossing and bike path are on the agenda and will be discussed. He also stated the Border Committee will be meeting soon.

Approval of the Minutes:

Charlie Challstrom moved to approve the November minutes. Dave Hix seconded the motion. Vote: 5-0, as presented.

Report from Town Council:

Charlie Challstrom reported the following:
Woods Committee Presentation – Joan Mahaffey provided an update on strategy and progress on the Town’s reforestation of our Woods as precursor to the November 13 informational meeting.

Maple Lake Culvert Replacement – John Compton gave an overview of the completed culvert project, noting the stormwater issues “upstream” remain to be addressed. John said he will contact our new Code Enforcement Inspector who has stormwater experience to determine his interest and qualifications to consult on remedies.

McCathran Hall Generator Installation – Installation of the backup electrical generator is underway, including upgrade to 200-amp service and corrective actions to bring the Town Hall into compliance with the electrical code.

Speed Bumps – The Council noted the apparent near-term efficacy of the speed bumps being tested at stop signs along Chestnut Road, but also the inherent safety hazards and reports that such bumps have been declared as not suitable for installation on public roads. The Council will continue to monitor this continuing traffic calming experiment, with expectations the bumps on Chestnut Road will be replaced with suitable and compliant speed humps.

Historic Preservation Commission (HPC) Alternate – The Council approved the Mayor’s appointment of Robyn Renas as an Alternate Member of the HPC.

Dog Park Request for Proposal (RFP) – The draft RFP was reviewed with a focus on clearing the ground for fence installation, specifics for the double-gate entry, fence height and the owner’s responsibilities if dog is a jumper, and adjusting fence boundaries. A walk-through to resolve outstanding issues is expected, and the revised RFP will be considered on December 10.

Fence Encroachment at 215 Washington Grove Lane – John Compton stated he will give notice of a time period for owner removal of the fence encroaching on Town property, before the Town acts and the fence sections are moved onto the private property by Steve Werts.

Archery Range Inquiry – John Compton reported an inquiry about setting up an archery range in Woodward Park or on other Town land. The Mayor and Council concluded there was nowhere on Town land safe enough to approve this activity.

Pedestrian Crossing at Commercial Corner – Update:

This item will be discussed at the next meeting.

Master Plan Work Session – 16 January 2019 – Proposed Topics:

Chairman Nagrod turned the meeting over to Georgette Cole. Georgette reported receipt of the Forestry & Beautification submission and asked for guidance concerning inclusion of language about the Dog Park in the Master Plan. The Commission discussed the following:

  • Writing something about the FR Zone and the existence of a Dog Park in the woods
  • Location description of the Dog Park
  • Value of the Dog Park to the Town
  • How the Dog Park fits the purpose of the FR Zone
  • Amenity for residents

There was a lengthy discussion about how best to keep the public informed about the working drafts and changes as they happen. There was additional discussion about the process for approving and incorporating submissions to the Master Plan.

Conclusion: Georgette will come up with documents accessible from the Town website for the public to review.
PC Goal for January 16th Meeting: To complete work on Land Use and Municipal Growth.

Master Plan – Update – Acceptance of Items for Working Draft:

Georgette reported status of the following sections:

  • Bicycling in Washington Grove, Emergency Preparedness Committee, Lake Committee and Forestry & Beautification are all in hand.
  • Woods Committee should be received within the week.
  • Preliminary outline from the Historic Preservation Commission should be received by the end of the month.
  • Stormwater Management, Parking Policy and Street lighting have yet to be addressed.

Washington Grove House Records – Status Report:

Nothing new to report.

Other Business:

Charlie Challstrom brought up the Montgomery Municipal Cable questionnaire. He reviewed the document with the PC and stated anyone interested in participating should let him know.

There being no further business, the meeting adjourned at 8:48 PM.

Kathryn L. Lehman, Town Clerk

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