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Mayor and Council Build Relationship
“We are building a strong relationship as we support our kids and support our community, and continue to support our world class schools,” Starr said in an interview after the meet and greet.
During the Jan. 9 meeting, Starr highlighted for the Mayor and Council MCPS’commitment to the county’s 146,000 students and talked about the ongoing challenge of creating school capacity.
That request will go before the Montgomery County Council this year. Among the requests, are several specific to Rockville schools, including an addition at Julius West Middle School that would open in August 2016 and a new elementary school in the Richard Montgomery cluster that would also open in August 2016.
County Executive Isiah Leggett proposed a plan in January that would cut school spending and delay the new elementary school. That plan will still need to go before the County Council.
“We appreciate any support you can provide to help our County Council understand the magnitude of these needs,” Starr said.
More than 200 members of the business, residential, public and nonprofit communities attended the summit, and succeeded in starting a dialogue among the groups.
Stephen Fuller, Ph.D., Director of the Center for Regional Analysis at George Mason University and an expert
Fuller explained during the summit that Rockville’s economy is balanced by a “three-legged stool,” that includes residents, business activity and government. Fuller noted that all three sectors rely on health and education,retail, consumer and hospitality services, and all compete with and rely on the greater county and Washington metropolitan region.
The five themes to emerge from the summit were:
Lutheran Home Bonds Approved, Council Looks to Review Policy
The bond will not cost the City anything and does not carry any risk for the City’s finances.
The project is expected to be completed in the fall of 2014. National Lutheran Home is located on Viers Drive.
Following the approval, the Mayor and Council discussed an amendment to the City’s Financial Management Policies that would add a section titled Economic Development Revenue Bonds Policies and Criteria. These are the policies and criteria that the Mayor and Council can utilize as guidance to determine whether a request from a nonprofit for bond financing should be considered.
A public hearing on the policy took place Jan. 23. The public record will be kept open until Monday, Feb. 6, at 5 p.m.
Focus on Human Rights Commission
The HRC is charged with minimizing the effects of conflict and promoting appreciation of diversity within the City through mediation, investigation into complaints of discrimination, the annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. celebration, the F. Michael Taff and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Youth Awards and the annual student Human Rights Multimedia Contest.
The HRC generally meets the fourth Wednesday of the month. The next meeting is scheduled for Feb. 22 at 7 p.m. at Rockville City Hall, 111 Maryland Ave.