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13 February 2012 | Approved: 12 March 2012

Mayor Cole called the regular meeting of the Town Council to order at 7:30 p.m. In attendance were Councilors Joe Clark, Sylvie Favret, Audrey Maskery, Joli McCathran and Bill Robertson. Also present were Treasurer Mary Challstrom, Planning Commission Chairman Charlie Challstrom and residents Ann Briggs, Birgit Henninger, Jenny & Marty Long, John Tomlin and Dan Tutas. Erin Girard and Steve Kaufmann came representing the Towne Crest redevelopment project. Residents Meredith Horan and David Stopak arrived at 8:00 PM as did Stacy Hornstein from the Towne Crest redevelopment project.

Approval of Agenda

Bill Robertson moved, Joe Clark seconded that the agenda be approved. Mayor Cole added a new #6; Lighting Advisory Committee. Vote: 5-0.

Public Appearances

Resident Dan Tutas came to offer a suggestion to combating the increasing and soon-to-be burdensome deer population. He explained that he heard something on NPR that might be worth pursuing. He explained a story about a plant in Indonesia that is being used/studied as effective birth control. He presented questions that he thought would be worth asking and then suggested that inquiries from the Mayor or the Council might go farther than just a citizen inquiry. He suggested that this might be a possibility for deer birth control and thought that this should be brought to the attention of DNR or NIST. Mayor Cole thanked Mr. Tutas for this information.

Approval of Minutes

Sylvie Favret moved, Audrey Maskery seconded that the Town Council minutes for January 9, 2012 be approved. Vote: 5-0.

Treasurer’s Report

  • Sylvie Favret moved, Joe Clark seconded that the Treasurer’s Report for January 2012 be accepted. The Treasurer made reference to the Maryland State 2012 Constant Yield Tax Rate Certification document and a discussion ensued. Vote: 5-0.
  • Treasurers Report 2012-02 pdf

Joli McCathran moved, Bill Robertson seconded the motion to transfer $10,000 from savings to checking in order to pay bills. Vote: 5-0.

Outdoor Lighting Advisory Committee – Discussion

Charlie Challstrom reported that the conversion of our streetlight bulbs from incandescent to induction could happen in the next couple of weeks. Ninety three lights will be converted. Mayor Cole reported that she has asked the resident-formed adhoc Outdoor Lighting Advisory Committee to be a Council-sanctioned committee to help with the streetlight conversion. She asked for a Council liaison. Sylvie Favret volunteered to take this on as part of her safety duties. Carolyn Rapkievian has agreed to continue as the chair of this Committee. The Committee and the Council liaison will address requests to add/remove poles, fixtures and shields.

Changes to Woodward Park Use Policy – Discussion

Mayor Cole referred the Council to a letter written by Don Henninger and presented just before the start of the meeting. Mayor Cole reviewed the changes made to proposed Resolution 2012-01 during the last few months. A discussion ensued. Two (2) changes were made.

Audrey Maskery moved, Joe Clark seconded the motion to introduce Resolution 2012-01; Resolution Regarding Usage of Woodward Park as amended. Vote: 5-0.
Joe Clark moved, Audrey Maskery seconded the motion to adopt Resolution 2012-01; Resolution Regarding Usage of Woodward Park. Vote: 5-0.
Audrey Maskery moved, Joe Clark seconded the motion to remove the soccer goals from Woodward Park. Vote: 5-0.

Comcast Franchise Renewal – Discussion

Mayor Cole explained the history of this item. There was a brief discussion. Joe Clark moved, Sylvie Favret seconded the motion to authorize attorney David Podolsky to represent the Town in Comcast franchise negotiations. Vote: 5-0.

Planning Commission Recommendations on the Towne Crest Rezoning Proposal

Mayor Cole read the three (3) main points on the document presented by the Planning Commission and then asked for questions. Joe Clark asked about potential issues not mentioned on the PC document. Charlie Challstrom explained the process and recommended that the Council prepare a resolution on the Town’s position for a vote at the March Council meeting. He suggested that the resolution read much like the 1983 model sent to the Planning Board when a similar redevelopment project was proposed.

Council Reports

  • Bill Robertson had an addition to his report. The crack sealing of selected areas on Town roadways was completed today. Joe Clark moved, Sylvie Favret seconded that the Council Reports for January 2012 be approved for posting on the Town website. Vote: 5-0.
  • Town Council Reports – February 2012 pdf

Mayor’s Announcements

  • Deer Park Bridge Update – Mayor Cole reported that there was nothing new about this item.
  • Lower Ridge Road Drainage – Mayor Cole reported that on January 18th she and Steve Werts met with representatives from the County and Toll Brothers concerning the ponding on Ridge Road. After some discussion, all agreed to allow the area to settle for the rest of the winter and revisit it in the spring at which time new measurements will be taken. The area will be re-graded based on the measurements.
  • Landscaping Plan for EMOC – Mayor Cole reported that she and Joli McCathran met with the County this morning. They asked for the swale to be moved, for more oak trees, for more dense plantings at the eastern end of the area and for a fence. Shelley and Bob Booher are still working on a plan to modify the exterior finish/shingles of the salt barn.

New Business

David Stopak stated that he believes that the Town should seek professional advice from an attorney in reference to the Towne Crest redevelopment/rezoning project. He went on to say that the density is far too high and this is a serious issue. Ann Briggs reminded people that the Shady Grove Civic Alliance meeting this week has this on the agenda. A discussion ensued which included density, planners, other possible areas that could be developed with the same density,legalities, Master Plans, strategies, estimates, land use attorneys and sitting down for a fixed amount of time to consult with the Town attorney. Joe Clark moved to approve a dollar figure, not to exceed $5,000.00, for the Mayor and Planning Commission Chair to explore a strategy to support the Town’s position on the Towne Crest rezoning proposal. Audrey Maskery seconded the motion. Vote: 5-0.

The meeting was adjourned at 9:29 p.m.

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