County Report This Week Episode 370 May 26, 2017


that doesn’t for this addition thank you for joining us. Coming up in the next half hour, it is almost time to tee off at the quicken loan national. There is a change and we will explain. Celebrating the class of 2017 at montgomery college. As they close one chapter and begin a new one. Later, you’re hungry for some tasty cuisine, we will tell you why this is the place to be on June 4.>>we begin with news of the purple line. A federal judge has halted plans for construction. Us district judge richard leon recently rolled that no one official needed to look at safety issues and the declining number of passengers using metro. How those issues might impact the proposed rail project. The ruling further delays construction which means $900 million in federal grants could be lost. County executive ike leggett said the county will appeal this decision.>>I am saddened about what the judge ruled: that’s about the way your. Is against the law to do so I see nothing in the decision which he could have rendered many months ago. Not only that he his — he is dribbling the process out over several weeks that denies us the opportunity to fully and copperheads of the appeal. We should’ve been able to appeal this sometime ago. We have been threatened with the loss of federal funds. i just think the delay in the decision is unfortunate.>>the purple line is a planned 16 mile light rail line that would link the — says the county to new calvin and prince george’s county. Construction was scheduled to begin in late 2016. A lawsuit over environmental concerns has brought the project to a standstill. Maryland officials have said reopening the study could take months and every month of delay caused the state more than $13 million.>>this now — it is now a done deal for the county council has approved a $5.4 billion budget. The decision was unanimous. Susan kennedy tells us more about what is in store for education, nonprofits and public safety.>>the fiscal year 2018 budget represents a 2.7% increase from last year. It fills in the basic services residents depend on without raising taxes. It meets the fy18 target for the county’s reserves. 8.9% of the adjusted governmental revenue. It is important for local government not to lose sight of what the residents expect. What do they rely upon? They rely upon our schools, upon the roads, they rely on us to have good libraries. Great parks. So when we do all of the other things that we must do, particularly with respect to the safety net, we can’t forget the fundamentals of county government. I think this budget attends to the fundamentals.>>half of the county’s operation by the goes to the school system. This year they approved 2.5 $2 billion, a 2.6% increase over 2017.>>nobody expected that every year consistently the school system would be adding an average of 2000 students. Though students happen to be students that require a lot of additional’s support.>>good news for transportation. The budget includes 31 point $5 million or study, design, and right-of-way purchase for bus rapid transit. And they moved to provide more affordable housing in montgomery county, the council appeared $59 million for [ Indiscernible]. $10.5 billion will be allocated at this year’s budget for community grants that support safety net programs and services that assist the disadvantaged.>>it continues progress in the budget in assuring that every resident of montgomery county is able to see the doctor regardless of economic status, regardless of insurance coverage.>>this county executive is expected to sign the budget into law before 2018. Council President Berliner said they wrap up the season satisfied that it reflects the values of montgomery county residents.>>this budget really does combine three distinct elements. Fiscal responsibility, our values, and attending to the basics.>>in rockville, I am susan kennedy.>>>thousands of county residents are eligible to become us citizens but the citizen fees can be overwhelming. Now there’s a new initiative aimed at adding resources into the hands of those applying for naturalization. Lauren jones has the details.>>the county has joined two organizations and six local nonprofits with the goal of naturalizing almost 60,000 county residents.>>you’re going to make it as convenient as possible. And as accessible as possible and to remove some of the barriers for these people that they find challenging. I believe we can get a very good number, hopefully get every one of them, at least going to the process.>>they will develop citizenship informational centers in germantown and others. To connect the immigrant community with resources, material and information in different languages. Montgomery college is offering free citizenship classes.>>we are delighted to offer classes throughout the county as part of our grant program that is funded by uscis. And homeland security. These classes run about 60 hours and we have lower levels, we have beginner and intermediate. There in the evenings typically. We offer them in collaboration with catholic charities so that we can refer fax — folks back in forth. Some of things we learned what classes are things like how to answer the questions during the interview, how to fill out the application, catholic charities folks come over and review the applications to make sure it is in place.>>to apply for naturalization, the cost is $725. Local nonprofits such as catholic chairs, the asian pacific american resources center, and casa will be assisting with the application process.>>if you are low income or you have no income at all, you May qualify for the fee waiver from the uscis. We can tell at casa and to help you if you qualify.>>the county will also be hosting several citizenship workshops where residents can obtain free legal assistance. The first one will be held on saturday, June 3 from 10 am-2 pm at the rockville library. County officials are also working with the us citizenship and immigration services to schedule naturalization ceremonies in montgomery county. In silver springs, lauren jones.>>>when the coalition for smarter growth was looking for someone to honor with its first livable community award, there was only one person that fit the bill. Casey anderson is the chair of the montgomery county planning board. He has received this year’s honor. For the past 20 years, the annual award has spotlighted an individual from the dmv for leadership on smart growth, transit, and community revitalization. We talked to chair anderson and others at the ceremony to find out what this award means for him and the county.>>well, I am proud that so many people I admire and work with have decided I deserve to be recognized. I think this is a reflection of the great work that our planning department has done and really not just planning, but parks department. They have a lot of forward- looking thinking and new ideas over the past few years. Our agency is good and I’m excited about the work we have done. It’s great that all of us are being recognized.>>he is a true leader. He has really energize the planning board and the planning staff. We have a great staff and they have moved many things forward including the progress with [ Indiscernible] With the bethesda plan, and others. And a new approach that rewards transit oriented development in terms of their traffic patterns. All of this will make a huge difference in terms of montreat — montgomery counties competitiveness.>>we recognize the direction of the county toward developing our public transportation node and urban note, coming up with a model for development that will create more sprawl, and promote the environment. and provide better places to live, a vibrant community. Housing over housing — public transportation. We have met john the county and the purple line coming. We’re trying to change the development pattern to really be dashed to take the most advantage of the limited space we have.>>it is a boon, it is a feather in the in the planning commission. The bi-county agency is trying to do the right thing and move forward and smart growth. Casey winning the award is good for us and it is an honor that he deserves. Because of what he brings to the table. And working with you montgomery county staff as well. I am so happy for him.>>coming up, thousands of recent grads at montgomery college reach a huge milestone and so does the school. We will take you to the commencement ceremony. It is almost time for the pros to tee off at the quicken loans ask — tournament. We will be right back.>>welcome back to county reports this week. Marching into pomp and circumstance, thousands of graduates were thrilled to see this day finally come. Mc tv joses thompson tells us more about the montgomery colleges commencement ceremony in rockville.>>if you are a member of the graduating class of montgomery college 2017, stand up and say I am mc. [Chanting]>>montgomery college celebrated its 70th commencement ceremony honoring graduates from the colleges three campuses and workforce development and continuing education programs. Doctor marion pilot gave the keynote address encouraging the graduate to continue using their knowledge for the greater good.>>because you have already done the work at montgomery college, what you bring to your families will be greater. What you can give to your community will be greater. Your impact on the world will be better.>>among the nearly 3000 graduates, for outstanding students were recognized as board of trustees scholars. One for each campus and 18 friendship scholarship. The board of trustees presented the honor greater degrees to kenneth becker, audrey hill, and james we are. More than 800 graduates walk the commencement stage to receive recognition for their academic achievements.>>I am a graduate of montgomery college. [Cheering]>>after the ceremony, many of the happy graduates spoke highly of their experiences at montgomery college.>>I feel proud. Montgomery college is great. It gave me the way.>>it feels awesome. I’m leaving with a bunch of exciting memories and things to look back on. I’m just very happy.>>it has been a wonderful experience. I feel welcome here — and i hope to move on.>>I feel like I can accomplish anything I want. I will be coming back.>>[Chanting]>>reporting from the campus, I’m joseph thompson.>>>get ready to splash into something with the opening of outdoor pools. Make sure you stay safe while cooling off in the water. On montgomery radio, we talked about making the activities safe and fun for everyone.>>the most important one is to follow the rules enforced by the lifeguard. We are there to help everybody and make sure that we follow the appropriate age restrictions for children. Children under 10 need to be accompanied by an adult. Children under the age of six need to have an adult with a 1- 1 ratio in the water.>>as a reminder, once the poll has reached its full capacity, no one can enter until other sleep. Sign up for the alert montgomery service where you can get alerts about which pools are.>>the quicken loans national returns to montgomery county this summer. It will be played on a different golf course in leicester. Sonia burke explains.>>>professional golfers from around the world will be here from June 26 through July 2. This is the first year in its 11 year history that the tournament will be played at tpc during the last year’s winter — winner one the trophy at congressional and he will be back to defend his title |v(Mat the new course in the avondale community.>>it’s going to be a hard test. It is a good golf course. It is a tough, tough golf course. We get away from congressional and the — how hard it is that this won’t be any less difficult. It’s just a different kind of difficult.>>in one sense, you might wish we were playing congressional gun because I have played and competed there well. In other since it’s good to be up atomic and I can have a little leg up on guy than somebody else.>>rickie fowler is the favorite who is ranked number nine is coming back this year. As well as some other names you May recognize.>>troy merritt, nick watley and bill haas — who finished in the top 10 last year and he has one the fedex cup in the past. The field is taking shape. We will have many more commitments as we get closer.>>the quicken loans national benefits the tiger woods foundation and it honors the men and women in the armed forces.>>this is a community event and we are proud to be in montgomery county for the quicken loans national review.>>volunteers are needed. For more information, visit the website for the tournament. Sonia burke, for county reports this week.>>>coming up on county reports this week, by two workday was a big hit. Plus, bringing asian american history alive through storytelling. Stay tuned and we will be right back.>>>welcome back. I am linda crosby. May is asian pacific heritage month. The county’s largest chinese organization held a special seminar that looks back at the long history of asian american in the country. Crystal parkas the story.>>recently, the chinese cultural community service center in gaithersburg hosted a seminar entitled paving the way , chinese doors. It looks back at the long and storied history of chinese americans.>>in honor of asian pacific american heritage month, the chinese culture and community service center hosted a special seminar to look at all the ways the chinese have adapted to life in america. Placards of prominent pioneers detailing their struggles and stories lined the wall. Many of the attendees are immigrants themselves who have a special appreciation for the struggles of those before them.>>I came here in 1979 and [Indiscernible]. So we share a lot of [Indiscernible]>>the first chinese immigrants were often manual laborers, mining for gold or building the transcontinental railroads. They were often looks down on and faced heavy discrimination. Doctor to no one, keynote speaker said with the repeal of the extreme dashed chinese exclusion act of 1943, racial discrimination has declined drastically. It doesn’t mean race has become a delete.>>– obsolete.>>I think it is the embodiment of the us. It is both experiencing the worst of racism and experiencing a lot of opportunities and perceived assumptions.>>there are nearly 30,000 chinese americans living in montgomery county.>>this is a community that brings a great deal in terms of professional capability, educational attainment, and it makes the chinese-american community makes it a stronger and more successful place to live. Very much part of the overall fabric of the community.>>in gaithersburg, I’m crystal park.>>if you’re looking for a way to de-clutter your house by getting rid of old papers, then we have a free solution for you. Write this down. On saturday, June 3, between 10 am-2 pm, you can shred and recycle your confidential papers . It takes place at the high school in burtonsville. This is sponsored by the division of solid waste services. It is free, secure, and environmentally friendly. For details of what you can and cannot bring, go to the website on your screen or call 311.>>rockville is a bike friendly cindy pick — bike friendly city.>>bike two workday. — bike to work day.>>this is an opportunity to showcase there’s — I write on the weekend. But the work thing takes a little adjusting. I will try to do it more often.>>rockville is a great place to ride to work. It clears the cobwebs.>>get fresh air, exercise — it is fun.>>I love riding to work. I get to ride along the trail going to school. I am an elementary school teacher. I can show my teacher — my school kids that exercise is good.>>I think we try to draw more people who might not ordinarily bike to work and at least get them out there one day a year. We can show you that you can get there.>>this is mental release and I think we can save the planet, one petal at a time.>>coming up next on county reports this week. Finding a good home for our pets of the week. And we will go to the grounds of gaithersburg city hall for the eighth annual book festival. Stay with us.>>welcome back to county reports this week. The gaithersburg book festival has put the city on the map as a cultural destination. This year’s event set a new record for attendance. Sonia burke reports.>>that’s right. This event has grown and it welcomed 40 offers in the first year, this year almost 130. This year’s book festival was bigger than ever. There was a record number of authors and thousands of book lovers who traveled from near and far to spend their saturday reading books and meeting some of their favorite authors.>>everywhere I looked there were a lot of people. They seem to be having a good time and it makes me happy.>>visit that showcases the gaithersburg diversity and that theme was evident everywhere. There was music, a children’s village, writing workshops, food, and of course lots of books.>>everybody comes to this like a celebration, not a club but a celebration of ideas, books, biography, history, I love it.>>a big crowd showed up early to hear mark schreiber talk about his new bic about pope francis.>>I hope the book spreads the message of humility and mercy.>>montgomery council members george leventhal had a conversation with dan zach about the ongoing threat of nuclear weapons.>>this is about how and why the break-in happened.>>it was standing room only for this author whose novel was described as a quiet masterpiece by the washington post.>>I am 8 1/2 months pregnant and I have to name my child ron charles now. That is the only response to a review like that. [Laughter]>>specifically I saw Ms. Sullivan and Ms. Medina. We come every year. I think it has gotten bigger. It is very popular. Parking is atrocious. [Laughter]>>it is in — incredible that so many people have come out for this.>>nathan hale, laura littman, and the list goes on and on.>>it is amazing. Gaithersburg having a big festival like this is fantastic.>>you think, wow, the person who wrote I wish you more — you get a chance to meet them and it is just a fun time. It emphasizes the importance of books and reading to the younger generation.>>it is coordinated and organized and it is fantastic. I will come back next year.>>the ninth annual book festival is scheduled for day — May 19, 2019. Sonia burke for county news this week.>>>Ms. Cunningham is a third grader who is wise beyond her years. She is using her life experiences to encourage other kids to look on the bright side.>>harmony cunningham said she would like that she is like any other nine euros. She likes school, sweets, and play. It was not always so easy.>>I was always wearing — worrying about whether my parents would get divorced.>>this is why she decided to use her personal experiences to write a book.>>the title of my book is called just be a kid. It is encouragement to other kids who worry a lot. Harmony said her message is simple.>>have fun and enjoy your childhood because you won’t have it for long. You will grow up soon.>>inspired by her mom, who is the author of who said I wouldn’t make it. Her interest in writing starts with curiosity about her mother’s book.>>harmony and I were having a discussion and she was inquiring about the book and wanted to read it. I was explained to her, I don’t think you’re old enough. When she got older maybe we could share that.>>that is what sparked harmony to write her own book. She came up with her title and expressed her feelings as her mom was shocked about the emotions.>>it was helpful for me because I believed that her emotion and experience could be something that other kids could relate to. As adults we don’t catch those. I thought this was actually so great.>>while harmony said the book is about inspiring kids, her mom said she hopes this book will encourage parents to read between the lines.>>support your children. If the vision thing is too big, never acknowledging that in front of the kids — support your kids 100%. You can find more about the book on amazon. In silver springs, I am amy hicks.>>>be ready to taste of savory food samples of the 22nd annual taste of wheaton. The festival will take place on June 4. It will be held in the wheaton triangle at the corner of grand view avenue and weedy drive. The samples will be available from the downtown wheaton’s best restaurants. Prices range from one dollar-5 dollars per taste. There will also be live entertainment, dance performances, arts and crafts and activities for the kids. Come on out and bon appitit.>>now it is time to meet our pets of the week. Here is someone from the adoption services.>>this is a very special bonded pair. Taz is five and snoopy is a very young 12. They have been living their whole lives together and they are very attached to each other. Were looking for a very special home that would take in this very attached paradox. Please give us a call at the number on your screen. Or learn more about taz and snoopy on the web at montgomery county md.Gov/ast.>>with that, we close this edition of county reports this week. Remember to like us on facebook and in join us again every time for a look at what is going on

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