Town Council News
Next meeting: Monday » 08.12.13 @ 7:30 p.m. in Council Room. The public is invited to attend.
Actions at the July Council meeting included:
- approval of Ordinance 2013-02; Amending Article IV to modify the list of structures for which building permits are not required.
- approval of Ordinance 2013-05; Modifying Minimum Side Set Back Requirements for Main Buildings in Residential Zones.
- approval of re-issuing a resolution of support for Rebuilding Together. The Council took the same action in 2010.
Towne Crest Update
In early July Towne Crest LLC tried to have their application "withdrawn without prejudice" which would have allowed them to immediately apply again, but the request was deemed “not in the public interest” by the Hearing Examiner and was not allowed by the County Council. Although the PD zoned plan has been tabled, we remain strongly in favor of the redevelopment of the Towne Crest property as the revitalization of this area is long overdue. We hope that Towne Crest LLC will choose to redevelop under the current zoning and are willing to work with them on such a proposal.
Washington Grove Meadow Park
During mid-June, the Montgomery County Parks Department made the decision to perform an "extra" mowing of the Washington Grove Meadow Park. Several concerned citizens brought questions to the Town and to the Montgomery County Area Park Manager. This message is to make citizens more aware of the actions within the Washington Grove Meadow Park. The Town expressed its concern to the Area Park Manager about eradicating the Mile-A-Minute and other non-native invasive plant material, i.e.: Bradford pears, bittersweet, garlic mustard etc. all of which are vigorous non-native invasive plants growing in this area. Non-native invasive plants and animals are considered to be one of the greatest threats to biodiversity after outright habitat destruction. The vining types, i.e.: Mile-A-Minute (and it is called this for a valid reason), Bittersweet, Wisteria, English Ivy, etc. are plants which are tremendous threats to native plant material and animal species. Invasives can cause the death of plants and result in severe loss of habitat for animals. For more information, please visit www.nps.gov/plants/alien, www.mdflora.org, and www.mdinvasives.org. All of the web sites, including those listed below; have excellent information regarding non-native species and damage which occurs. The Parks Department is required to remove non-native invasive plant material in parks to restore the indigenous habitat. However, this is not an easy process and can take many years to accomplish.
The Parks Department did mow the Park in early spring of 2013. Before mowing the second time this spring, the Parks Department asked the M-NCPPC forest ecologist to reevaluate the Park for current conditions. It was determined to mow the park at this time to try and control non-native invasive growth by cutting before it went to seed. The overall goal is to work toward getting a better handle on this problem. Mowing the entire area will allow for better evaluation of the severity of the problem and help in continuing to work on removal by professionals and Weed Warrior volunteers. After the second mowing, crews came out to hand rake Mile-A-Minute off of tree trunks and spot spraying was performed by licensed professionals hired by M-NCPPC.
Volunteers are always welcome to help in parks with this problem. However, volunteers need to become Weed Warriors or work under the supervision of a Weed Warrior. To become a Weed Warrior, you need to be 16 or older, must complete a 2-part online course, participate in a 2-hour field training session with a forest ecologist, and participate in a supervised workday with park staff. Certified Weed Warriors will then be authorized to manually remove non-native invasives anywhere on Montgomery Parks, M-NCPPC property including the Washington Grove Meadow Park, on their own schedules and at their own pace. If interested in becoming a Weed Warrior please visit www.weedwarrior.org. If you wish to help out along with a Weed Warrior, please contact the Town Office.
M-NCPPC Staff provided the Town with a draft of the Operation and Use plan in October 2012. This Operation and Use Plan is intended to provide park operations personnel with specific guidance for the management of the park. It contains information on the status of the park including the environmental resources that exist within the park. The focus of the Operation and Use Plan is a series of Management Maps that give specific guidance on how each element of the park is to be implemented in the short-term and managed for the long-term. This is available via the Town web site or the Town Office. Additionally, while it was common practice in the past to leave dog waste in this area, this is not allowed to occur in the field or any Montgomery County parks. Please remove all dog waste.
In May the Mayor decided the charge of the WGMP Committee was complete and the committee was officially disbanded. Many thanks to all who served as committee members and to Ernie Kawasaki for Chairing the Committee! If residents have questions or concerns about the Park please address them to the Mayor and Council.
Joli A. McCathran
Washington Grove Meadow Park Liaison
Income and Age Eligible Property Tax Credits
Grove residents may be eligible for tax credit programs for income-eligible homeowners and seniors. The Maryland homeowners’ property tax credit and Montgomery County’s supplemental tax credit may be available to homeowners who qualify based on their household income as compared to their tax bill. Homeowners who are at least 70 and are eligible for either of the tax credits are also eligible for the County’s senior property tax credit. It is necessary to reapply for this property tax credit program each year. The application form contains information for the State assessment agency to determine eligibility for the State and County credits, so homeowners need to submit only one application. Applications for this program must be filed by September 1. For information about the tax credit programs, call 800-944-7403 or visit www.dat.state.md.us/. Click on "Forms & Applications" and go all the way to the bottom to "Tax Credits".
Planning Commission News
Next meeting: Wednesday » 08.07.13 @ 7:30 p.m. in Council Room.
The public is invited to attend.
If you are going to erect a building or structure (including fences), make structural alterations to, or move any existing building or other structure, you must first obtain a building permit from the Washington Grove Planning Commission. All permit applications must be received in the Town Office fourteen (14) days prior to the Planning Commission meeting at which they will receive their initial review. The applicant must post a "Notice To Neighbors" sign within seven (7) days of receiving it from the Town Clerk. The Planning Commission will not act on an application unless the Notice To Neighbors sign was posted in a timely fashion as confirmed by the Commission. Please contact the Town Office (301-926-2256) or [email protected], or see permits for more details. The Historic Preservation Commission will review most permit applications as well.
Permits up for approval on Aug. 7, 2013:
- 122 Chestnut Ave. » Addition
- 202 Grove Ave. » Addition
- 404 Grove Ave. » Addition
Historic Preservation News
Next meeting: Tuesday » 08.20.13 @ 7:30 p.m. in Council Room.
Meetings are open to the public. The HPC encourages residents to come for an early consultation when planning a renovation.
Early Consultations with the HPC
Are you starting to think about a change to your home? Please consider coming to a monthly meeting of the HPC for an informal discussion of your thoughts and goals. Sketches, photos or written descriptions are welcome, but not necessary. Just contact the Town Clerk or the HPC Chair, Bob Booher, to be added to the agenda for the next meeting. Such early consultations may help in the preparation of formal architectural drawings. Ideas or suggestions at this stage may enhance compatibility as well as save time and money in developing your architectural plans. HPC Guidelines can be found on the Town Website at https://washingtongrovemd.org/historic-preservation-commission-guidelines and may provide additional food for thought. The Historic Preservations Commission meets on the third Tuesday of each month. Meetings are at 7:30 p.m. in the Council Room.
Woman’s Club News
There is no event or meeting in August.
Our July card writing party was a fun and productive evening, complete with delightful background music and favorite hats. While writing over 165 cards for the staff of the psychiatric unit at Suburban Hospital to have on hand to brighten up the residents’ days, we shared good laughs, nice conversations and lots of refreshments. As they say, a good time was had by all, and we decided we’d like to do it again…maybe next time for the patients in some of the nearby veterans hospitals.
The Woman’s Club will be taking off the month of August, but we’re already looking forward to our fall and winter programs. September 20th is our annual Pot Luck Dinner, October 12th will be our first ever Talent Show and on November 14th we invite all the kids and their parents to spend an evening Painting Holiday Decorations.
We need to get some idea of who’s going to be performing in the October Talent Show, so please call Barbara Engle (301-424-8847) or e-mail Marilynn Frey ([email protected]) and let us know what you’d like to do. We’re hoping the show will be such a rousing success that it will become a new fall tradition.
Start Planning for the October Talent Show!
Recreation Committee News
Next meeting: Wednesday » 10.16.13 @ 7:30 p.m. in Council Room.
The public is invited to attend. New members always welcome!
- Tennis Social: Come to a Tennis Social on three (3) Fridays in August (9, 16, 23) from 6:30 – 8:30PM. Bring your racket and a cold drink!
- Tennis Workshop: Tennis players who have an interest in a late-summer or fall workshop should call Meredith Horan at 301-926-1054. User fee TBA.
- Labor Day Tennis Tournament for Juniors: Kids up to age 18 are invited to participate in a Labor Day Tennis Tournament on Mon., Sept. 2, 2013. Start time: 9:00AM.
Clay Courts Committee
Next meeting: Wednesday » 08.27.13 @ 7:30 p.m. in Council Room.
Your participation is encouraged as the group addresses; "To clay or not to clay". Please come and voice your opinion/concerns.
Washington Grove T-shirts!
Back by popular demand! The Recreation Committee is considering creating and selling WG t-shirts. To come up with a design, we have decided to have a t-shirt design contest. We know we are NOT a competition kind of town, but we have so many creative and talented folks, we thought it might be fun to see what we get.
Here are the rules:
- No age limits. We will consider designs from 0-100 year olds so long as it is “Grovey-ish”
- The design must be simple and easy to reproduce. Must not be more than 1-2 colors. One (1) is preferable because it will be cheaper to reproduce. But we will consider 2 colors.
- Can be in any medium.
- No bad words or inappropriate language or images.
- Recreation reserves the right to choose a design, or not choose any of the designs. If we get 2 or 3 that we think might work, we might put them out for a Town vote.
- We will not change the design without permission from the artist.
If your design is in an electronic format, you can email it to [email protected]. If it is in another medium, you may drop it off at the Town office. To be considered, please have your designs turned in by August 31.
Questions? Email: [email protected].
MARK YOU CALENDARS…FALL EVENTS!
- Bluestoberfest in September
This year, the date for Bluestoberfest is September 28, 2013. Mark your calendars and find your boogie shoes!!
- First Annual Pumpkin Carving Festival
Saturday, October 26, 2013
Plans and details are being worked out as we speak (or read)! All will be revealed in the Sept. Bulletin.
Maple Lake News
Next meeting: Wednesday » 08.21.13 @ 7:30 p.m. in Council Room.
Please help us keep Maple Lake a wonderful place by observing the following:
- Let the Lifeguards pay attention to swimmers in the water, and minimize distracting them.
- Fishing is allowed on the far side of the bridge, and around to the spring.
- Trash is a problem almost every day. PLEASE take out what you bring in.
The following precautions have been taken to make your time at the lake more enjoyable;
- We have turned on the pump for 3-4 hours a day to cool the lake temperature down while the weather is hot.
- Pondweed (Chara) is getting bad at the shallow end. We will apply Cutrine+ granular pellets, which is “slow releasing” and is not hazard to swimmers or wildlife.
What Is Grove Alert?
Grove Alert is an e-mail notification system that Town government uses to communicate important information to residents quickly. The Town does not share the notification list with any outside groups and only uses this method for very important information. Those who do not have e-mail, receive Grove Alerts via US Mail or, sometimes, via telephone. If you do not receive Grove Alerts and want your email address added to the list, please contact the Town Office.
Missed refuse/recycling pickup?
Please call the Town Office (301-926-2256) or e-mail ([email protected]) by 11:00AM the next day.
Maintenance Phone # (301-963-5850) Is Kaput
The long-standing phone number for the Town Maintenance Garage no longer exists. Residents who need to contact Town Maintenance should call Bill Robertson 240-912-6080 or the Town Office.
217 Ridge Road; P.O. Box 667
TOWN COUNCIL CONTACT INFO. & AREAS OF RESPONSIBILITY
- Audrey Maskery: 301-977-0582
Forestry and Beautification, Memorials
- Joli McCathran: 301-869-5358
Historic Preservation Commission, Parks & Playgrounds, Meadow Park Liaison
- Carolyn Rapkievian: 301-519-2021
Maple Lake, Safety, Website
- Bill Robertson: 240-912-6080
Maintenance, Roads & Walkways
- Greg Silber: 301-926-1854
Contracts, Recreation, Intergovernmental
- David Young: 240-912-9895
Planning Commission, McCathran Hall
- Visiting preacher Rev. Larry Harp: July 28, "The Preacher and the Hooker," August 4th, “Raising Cain, or Lazarus,” and August 11, “The Benediction.”
- Mike Fekula from "Interfaith Power and Light" on August 18th speaks on "Creation and the Environmental Crisis." IPL leads the D.C. area Interfaith Conference in our religious response to climate change.
- Special music and musicians: We are blessed to have the music ministry of Dick Cavicchi at the piano and other instruments during most of the Sundays in August. On August 4th we also welcome volunteer pianist Gwen Stamper to Washington Grove church
Did you know that it is illegal to turn RIGHT on to WG Lane from McCauley St. and to turn LEFT on to McCauley from WG Lane?