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Town Council News

Next meeting: Monday, January 11, 2016; 6:00 p.m.*(details pg. 2) in the Council Room.
The public is invited to attend. Actions at the December meeting included:

  • approval of Ord. 2015-06; Ordinance adopting amendments to Article VII, Section 3.327-Fences and Section 4.2-Definitions.
  • approval of Ord 2015-07; Ordinance adopting amendments to Article II, Section 7-Smoking in Public Buildings and Venues and Section 8-Conflict with other laws.
  • approval of Resolution 2015-08; Regulations for the Rental of McCathran Hall.
  • acceptance of the Audit Report Fiscal Year ending June 30, 2015. A hard copy of the audit is available at the Town Office.

From the Mayor…

The Town of Washington Grove has a new web site. The address is the same but it is new and improved! Much appreciation goes to the highly talented Marida Hines for her contract in performing this immense job. Please take a fresh look at www.washingtongrovemd.org . It is wonderful.

Specific concerns were brought to the Town Council meeting in December 2015 regarding the illegal right turn from McCauley Street onto Washington Grove Lane, and vice-versa. Additionally, concerns of excessive speed and ignoring stop signs in this area were brought to my attention. PLEASE be respectful of fellow Town residents and of the law of the Town by following the rules of the road.

Maple Lake is one of the great environmental and recreational treasures of Washington Grove. State legislation is being introduced by Senator Nancy King to allow the Town autonomy to self-monitor Maple Lake. The bill is entitled Municipal Corporations – Closed Swimming Lake –

Regulations (subject to change). Lake Committee Chair John Hutchinson and I testified before the Montgomery County State Delegation in support of this legislation in November 2015. No action is necessary at this time. The Town will be kept in the loop as to the progress of this legislation. If you have questions you may contact John Hutchinson or myself.

Several Town citizens attended the December 2015 Town Council meeting to express their desire towards encouraging the Council to consider signing The Charter for Compassion, a global initiative supported by 45 countries around the globe. The text the Council is considering to put into a possible resolution states:
Affirming Washington Grove’s Tolerance for Differing Religions and Ethnicities and Expressing Support for Refugees: The Town of Washington Grove stands with other compassionate communities across America eager to embrace those fleeing oppression, violence and terrorism around the world. By doing so we honor our roots, those that brought our parents, grandparents and great grandparents to America. We do this without reservation to race, religion or national origin.
Washington Grove offers support and asylum to victims of the most recent increase in terrorism including those fleeing Syria. We encourage the State of Maryland to stand with us by opposing discrimination against these most vulnerable victims of terror and violence.”

Please share your thoughts with any member of the Town Council or myself if you choose to do so. This will again be an agenda item at the January 11, 2016 Council meeting.

The Department of Natural Resource, Montgomery County Forestry Board’s 2015/2016 Register Champion Trees is now available. You may pick up hard copies at the Town office or at my home or view on line at www.mcmdforestryboard.org and click on the Champion Trees tab. The Town has a total of 5 champion trees within our borders, including one Maryland state champion.
The Montgomery Magazine December/January 2016 edition has two nice articles of interest to residents. One on the Town of Washington Grove and another about resident Joseph Craig English and his studio. These articles may be found on-line at https://montgomerymag.com.
Happy New Year to all!
[email protected]

* Change in January TC Meeting Start Time

The January meeting of the Town Council is scheduled for January 11, 2016, and will begin at 6:00 p.m. in McCathran Hall. This time change is to allow our Town attorney to inform the Town Council of the Comcast agreement which must be in a Town Ordinance format. This meeting is open to the public.

Joint Work Session Scheduled

The Town Council, Planning Commission and Historic Preservation Commission will hold a joint work session on January 25, 2016 at 7:30 p.m. in McCathran Hall. The purpose of this work session is to discuss issues of mutual concerns. If you have items you wish to have these groups discuss together, please contact Mayor McCathran via e-mail at [email protected] or 301-869-5358.

Planning Commission News…

Next meeting: Wed., January 6, 2016; 7:30 p.m. in the Council Room.
The public is invited to attend.
If you are considering any renovation or building project at your house, be sure to get a copy of the revised procedures to apply for a Town Building Permit which will help you through the Town’s process. The procedures are available from the Town Clerk or from the Town’s website. In addition, the house files in the Town Hall, another resource when planning home modifications, may have some helpful information on your property. The Historic Preservation Commission and the Planning Commission are here to help you with your project.

Permits up for discussion on January 6, 2016:

  • 111 Maple Ave. Addition

Historic Preservation Commission News…

Next meeting: Tuesday, January 19, 2016; 7:30 p.m. in the Council Room. All meetings are open to the public.

If you are considering changes to your home, we would welcome the opportunity to speak with you, most preferably early in your planning process, at one of our monthly meetings, which are scheduled on the third Tuesday of each month, at 7:30 p.m. in the Council Room.”

Windows Finale…

As we end our series about windows, we offer some easy, low-cost suggestions to make your home’s original windows more energy efficient.

  • Caulk around the window opening on the exterior.
  • Caulk around the window trim on the inside.
  • Add weather stripping to the window sash. There are many types of weather stripping to suit various window types, budgets, and needs.
  • Use a storm window or thermal panel.

Last but not least – a tip that requires neither tools nor supplies, and very little time. Check the lock!
Many people think the sash lock is primarily for security. It does help with security, but the lock’s most important job is to ensure that the meeting sash rails are held tightly together. A tight fit greatly reduces air infiltration.

Recreation Committee News…

Next Meeting: Wed., January 20, 2016; 7:30 p.m. in the Council Room.
The festivities are (mostly) over and January resolutions loom, but the Recreation Committee would like to look back one last time to thank all those who helped decorate the Town Hall and Gazebo, headed up once again by Steve Werts; and those who made sure the post-show hospitality spread was laid without a hitch. Speaking of the Holiday Show, those theatrical Magi, Pat DiBella-Kreger, Judy Mroczka, and Marilynn Frey devised a fabulous visit to a galaxy not so far, far away; the behind the scenes team worked tirelessly; and the EFX crew of Charlie Challstrom, John Porter, Ken McCathran and Keith Gillis gave this year’s show a whole new dimension. Beam us up anytime!

The Committee would also like to thank those Town residents who have stepped up to suggest possible classes or special events; please keep the ideas coming! Email Eve Zibart at [email protected] or feel free to join us at a meeting. And as all those holiday preparations demonstrated, even if you can’t help out all the time, extra hands are always welcome.

Film Society News…

Next movie date is January 10. 2016. Mark your calendars!
Ace in the Hole
Directed by Billy Wilder, 1951, US, b&w, 111 minutes. Shown with English subtitles.
Although released in 1951, “Ace in the Hole” presents a dark, cynical vision of American media that feels astonishingly contemporary in its lust for sensationalism. Billy Wilder’s film stars Kirk Douglas in a fiercely intense performance as a reporter who will do anything to exploit the big story and lurid headlines.

Woman’s Club News…

You’re invited to the Annual White Elephant Auction on Saturday January 16, 2016

The holidays are over, 2016 has arrived and it’s time for our annual Woman’s Club’s White Elephant Auction. What is a White Elephant Auction you ask? Well, in Washington Grove, it’s a great excuse for a good time! Bring something you are willing to part with, be it useful, beautiful or goofy, then join the fun as it’s auctioned off to the highest bidder.

This year’s auction is Saturday, January 16, 2016, 7:00 PM, at the home of Mary and Charlie Challstrom, 503 McCauley Street. Everyone is welcome! So mark this fun event on your calendars!

Don’t forget that January is also our annual Membership Drive, when the Club’s annual dues of a modest $15 are payable. In addition to donating funds to help support the Summer In the Parks program, the Acorn Library and the Holiday show, we also host annual Town events like the January White Elephant Sale, the February Chili Dinner, the Spring Egg Hunt, the May Flower Show, the June Progressive Porch Party, and the September Pot Luck Supper, and special events such as guest speakers and Community Outreach programs.

Starting in February, our monthly meetings will be moving to the third Thursday, at 7:00 PM, and all members, and other interested folks, are encouraged to attend. The location changes depending on the season, so watch for an email announcement of where we’ll be each month.

Since the Club was formed, we have been an integral part of the fabric of our unique Town. So, if you’re a member, remember to pay your dues, and if you aren’t, please consider joining the Woman’s Club.

Forestry & Beautification News…

Next Meeting: Thursday, January 21, 2016; 7:30 p.m. in the Council Room. This meeting is open to the public.

Woods Group

Next Meeting: Monday, January 4, 2016; 7:30 p.m. in the Council Room.

No Dumping….

Recently there have been reports of yard debris and brush being dumped on Town land in our Woods. Residents are reminded that dumping on Town land and/or in the Town woods is prohibited.

Please report any debris seen on Town land to the Town Office, 301-926-2256 or [email protected]

General Information

Town Elections
Town Elections are coming up! Have you thought about becoming a member of the Town Council? We encourage anyone intrigued by this idea to talk to anyone in the Town Government about it. Ask around among your neighbors—many residents have already served and can give you an idea of what it’s like. Washington Grove can only thrive with the participation of motivated residents like YOU!

Snow Removal

Again this winter, snow removal will be performed by our Town Maintenance Staff. We do have a backup contract in case the service cannot be done by our crew.

Vacant Homes Task Force Formed

The next meeting of this Task Force will be on January 12, 2016, at 7:30 PM in the Council Room. This meeting is open to the public.

Emergency Preparedness Committee

The Washington Grove Emergency Preparedness Task Force will meet in the Town Council Room at

McCathran Hall on: Thursday, January 28, 2016 at 7:00 pm. All are welcome to attend.

Leaves Are Down and Done….

As of January 2, 2016, leaf collection by our contractor will be complete. If you are aware of any lingering piles, please contact the Greg Silber, 301-926-1854 or [email protected]. GREEN EARTH will return for a spring pick-up at the beginning of April. Check future Town Bulletins for details.

Yard Waste Collection Ended

Please note that December 31, 2015, was the last day for yard waste pickup by Potomac Disposal. This service will resume in early March.

Christmas Tree Disposal

Beginning in late December, Christmas trees will be picked up roadside by Town Maintenance staff. When you place your tree out for collection, please remove all tinsel, ornaments, the stand and any other metal.

Please Include Your Box Number

Our postmaster has asked residents remember to include their PO Box number on all correspondence and packages including UPS and FedEx. Not doing so slows down the delivery of your mail because they have to look up your box number. The Post Office is aware of the difficulties which PO Box customers have with other carriers and suggests that you address mail in the following manner:

Ms. Jean Doe
600 Grove Ave. #000
Washington Grove, MD 20880

Thank you for your help with this issue!

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