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7 February 2018 | Approved: 7 March 2018

Peter Nagrod called the meeting to order at 7:30 p.m. In attendance were Commissioners Georgette Cole (Alternate), John McClelland, Deb Mehlferber and Steve Werts. Others in attendance were Charlie Challstrom, John Compton, Pat Klein, Bud O’Connor, Mimi Styles and Mayor McCathran.

Approval of Agenda:

Steve Werts moved to approve the agenda. Deb Mehlferber seconded the motion. Mayor McCathran asked Chairman Nagrod to add a budget discussion under New Business and Georgette Cole asked to add a Planning Commission document update as well. Approved: 5-0.

Public Appearances:

There were none.

Approval of the Minutes:

Georgette Cole moved to approve the January minutes. Deb Mehlferber seconded the motion. Approved: 5-0.

Building Permit Applications:

121 Chestnut Avenue – Deb Mehlferber explained the proposed fence plan. The Commission discussed the property boundaries. Deb Mehlferber moved to approve the new fence at 121 Chestnut Avenue per Ordinance 3.327 as presented. Steve Werts seconded the motion. Approved: 5-0.

203 2nd Avenue – Deb Mehlferber explained the proposed fence plan. John McClelland moved to approve the new fence at 203 2nd Avenue per Ordinance 3.327 (a) 1 as presented. Steve Werts seconded the motion. Approved: 5-0.

Report from Town Council:

John McClelland reported the excessive number of vehicles parked at 201 Washington Grove Lane continues. The Mayor will address this again by the next meeting.

The Council approved testimony of John Compton for presentation at a Montgomery County Public Hearing on the Shared Use Bike Path.

The Council discussed the final motion from the January 4th Special Town Council meeting at which a draft ordinance to establish a process for sale of surplus properties for main buildings constructed in part on land owned by the Town of Washington Grove was proposed.

Permanent Easement – Updates:

15 The Circle – Mayor McCathran reported property owner Taunton Paine will accept the permanent easement, however, this action or the purchase of the land may be left up to the new owner. The full application will be sent electronically and by hard copy. The Commission will be copied.

Proposed Town Ordinance as Approved by the Town Council on a Process for the Transfer of Town Land to Adjacent Properties – Discussion:

Chairman Nagrod reminded everyone about the general consensus agreement to support the drafting of an ordinance to allow for the sale of Town land under certain circumstances. John McClelland explained he and Charlie Challstrom drafted a procedural ordinance which will be introduced at the February meeting of the Town Council. John and Charlie hope this effort will strengthen the feeling of good will in terms of acting favorably upon the petition presented by the property owners of 409 5th Avenue. There was a discussion about a generalized process ordinance, ordinances specific to certain properties, establishing a policy, and what to do if other encroachments are discovered later.

Charlie Challstrom made two (2) suggestions:

  1. the removal of Section 10 in the draft ordinance would make it more general
  2. The Mayor could send the draft ordinance to the Town attorney for legal review now which would clear the way for its introduction at the Town Council meeting on February 19th.

Steve Werts moved to recommend the draft ordinance written by John McClelland and Charlie Challstrom be brought to the Town Council for introduction at the February 19th meeting. Deb Mehlferber seconded the motion. Approved: 5-0.

Potential Topics for Discussion at Joint Work Session, Feb. 26, 2018:

The Commission would like to discuss the following topics at the joint meeting:

  • &Room rentals and a registration process
  • &Enforcement & hiring a code enforcement officer
  • &Multi-family dwelling units
  • &Accessory dwelling units

Shared Use Bike Path – Letter/Follow-up:

Peter Nagrod reported, with the help of the first paragraph of Jay Everhart’s letter, he sent a letter to Montgomery County concerning this issue.

Local Map Amendment – Rezoning for East Woods:

John McClelland moved to accept and file the local map amendment rezoning the East Woods. Georgette Cole seconded the motion. There was a discussion about who has the authority to file this amendment. Per the Town process, the Planning Commission has authority over the Woods Committee thus will do the filing.
Approval: 5-0.

Cator Property Development – Update:

The Town Clerk reported no response from the Maryland National Capital Park & Planning Commission about the new addresses. She will continue to try to get an answer.

Master Plan – Update:

Charlie Challstrom reported a re-engagement of the County Hazard Mitigation Plan because of the work done by our Emergency Preparedness Committee. The MoCo information will be added to the Master Plan efforts. This action will help with financial relief in the event of a disaster (hurricane, flood, blizzard, etc.). Dave Cosson will continue to develop relationships with County EPC. In addition, Dave has drafted an RFP for a generator for McCathran Hall to be considered by the Council.

Washington Grove House Records – Status Report:

Georgette Cole reported 164 properties have been completed.

Other Business:

Georgette Cole presented changes made to the Information for Applicants for a Building Permit to reflect the new 2nd Wednesday of the month deadline for application submission to the Commission.
Georgette Cole moved to adopt the new language. Steve Werts seconded the motion. Approval: 5-0.

The Commission discussed their budget for coming year.

The Commission also discussed the possibility of asking Montgomery County to use money paid in to Storm Water Taxes to drop the Railroad Street drain pipe and to address the erosion along Washington Grove Lane.

There being no further business, the meeting adjourned at 8:50 PM.

Kathryn L. Lehman, Town Clerk

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