Meeting Minutes: February 2018

Date: February 24, 2018

Officers in Attendance: President Marguerite Mickens-Mosley, Treasurer Anika Halota, and Secretary Michelle V. Rowley.

Also in attendance: Mr. Zachary Hare, Solar Energy World Representative, Candidates Mr. Matt Dernoga, Ms. Candace Hollingsworth, Mr. Ashanti F. Martinez, Ms. Deni Tavares and Constituency Outreach Officer for Councilor Tavares, Mr. Michael Harris.
Members in Attendance: Approximately 16

I. Welcome/Gathering

The meeting was called to order at 11:16 a.m. with President Mickens-Mosley presiding.
Michael Harris apologized for his absence from a previous meeting,meeting; this was a result of a recurring knee injury. The Association welcomed him and extended our wishes for continued recovery.

II. Announcements and Officers’ Reports:

  • Treasurer Halota provided an update on the Association’s account, which presently stands at $1632.00. The Association gave an end of year gift of appreciation to the church ($200.00).
  • The minutes from December 2017 were read and approved.
  • The agenda was then re-ordered to first facilitate the candidates who were present followed by Mr. Hare’s presentation.

III. Candidate for the Maryland House of Delegates (District 22), Mr. Ashanti Martinez
Candidate for the Maryland Hose of Delegates (District 21), Mr. Matt Dernoga
Candidate for County Council (District 2) Ms. Candace Hollingsworth, Mayor of Hyattsville
Candidate for County Council (District 2) Ms. Deni Tavares, Incumbent

Mr. Martinez realized that we are not in his district only after extending a request for time at the Association’s meeting. He used his time to outline why he was running for office, these reasons included the urgent need for new leadership from folks who share their community’s values and the need for new, younger energy.

Matt Dernoga then spoke to the Association. In his presentationpresentation, he centered his commitment to environmental issues and highlighted previous work done on this issue – as a student at the University of Maryland (UMD) he was a member of UMD for Clean Energy, advocating for clean energy solutions, and he worked to establish an Office of Sustainability at UMD.

At the county level (District 1) he has worked to pass thirty different pieces of legislation – some of the highlights include code enforcement, discontinuance of polystyrene, increasing minimum wage, addressing food insecurity through improved access to locally grown food.

He noted that he was running on a platform that was pro-environment and pro-labor. He was committed to maintaining A+ constituent services, and that it is possible to get hold of him within a day or two at the most.

He has continued to walk the communities and signaled his willingness to walk with the Saturday CSTCA Walking Group. His community walking sessions have highlighted concerns about litter, a desire to protect trees and environment and he identified himself as an ally on these issues.

Member Ted Hull asked the candidate about his willingness to sponsor a bottle deposit bill.

  •  Candidate Dernoga noted that there was momentum for such a bill in 2015, this died off and it would be important to think about how to re-energize the process. Momentum, he noted, is challenged by the local departments that benefit from this recycling, there is concern that such a bill might siphon resources away from those agencies.

Member Andrea Kenner asked the candidate to speak to improved options for the removal of hazard waste.

  • Candidate Dernoga noted that on an issue like that he would be willing to work with the council member to advocate for safe removal of hazardous waste because those issues are addressed at local county meetings.

Member Cynthia Bauer asked the candidate to talk about the communication strategies he uses to communicate with constituents.

  •  Candidate Dernoga observed that his preference was for door to doordoor-to-door contact and that this was going to be a feature of his time in office, not just in election years. He has found that there is no better way to find out what the issues than to walk the streets. He has also used social media and has worked to use a range of differentof different platforms.

Member Mickens Mosley (M) asked the candidate to speak to his commitment to the youth, particularly the need to have more young people involved in the political process.

  • Candidate Dernoga noted that the critical hours for young people are 3-6 p.m. when they get out of school. He noted that he intends to make a push in terms of going into schools and classroom and talking about how he got involved in politics. He spoke to the importance of working with young people of color who might serve as role models. He noted that he has been pro-active in terms of inviting young people into core campaign meetings so that they can see how the process works.

Candidate Dernoga was followed by candidate for Council, Candace Hollingsworth.

Candidate Hollingsworth, current Mayor of Hyattsville, provided an overview of her background. She is originally from Memphis, Tennessee, she moved to Hyattsville MD, and her children are in the local public school system. She is driven by the desire to build a community that her children, when adults, will see as a place that they would like to come back home to – a place with professional opportunities, cultural assets, and diversity. Will work collaboratively toward change.

She highlighted the importance of customer service – and that county administrators needed to take the lead on this. She emphasized her aversion for poor public service and committed to leading by example on this.

Member Michelle Rowley asked the candidate to speak to the young people caught in the Deferred Action Child Arrival (DACA) debate as well as deportation threats to members of the Salvadoran community.

Candidate Hollingsworth observed that responses to these issues were indicative of a community’s moral compass. She noted that in her capacity as Mayor of Hyattsville, one of her very first meetings was with CASA de Maryland. She has worked collaboratively to gauge interest in extending community based votes to no non-citizens, to strengthen community policing so that individuals can report crimes without fear of retribution, and to establish an Immigration Services Working Group – tasked with coordinating resources so that various departments can have greater synergy with each other. This Working Group she noted was subsequently supported with funds from the Vera Justice Center and support from Councilor Taveras.

She also noted that Hyattsville has signed on to the amicus brief emerging out of San Francisco. This brief aims to push back against removal of resources for cities that have been identified as “sanctuary cities.”

Incumbent Councilor Deni Taveras then spoke briefly. She pointed to her very active presence in the community for the last four years. She pointed to the tangible examples of her commitments, these included key pieces of legislation and initiatives such as “Take Pride in our Community Initiative,” her work to curb willful evictions, attention to trash collection, curbing the presence of prostitution brothels and beer houses. She also pointed to her work on to reduce residential overcrowding in rentals, as well as her support for immigration services and language access. Councilor Tavares also noted that she has been very aggressive in asking for funds for the District and has brought 1millon dollars into community and has invested 50 million into repaving roadways.

She concluded by reiterating her support toward the protection of the Cool Spring Forest. She encouraged the membership to reach out to her with our concerns.

IV. Zachary Hare, Solar Energy

Mr. Hare began his presentation by thanking the Association for the invitation and noting that inthat in light of increasing environment threats – chemical leaks, fracking, oil spills, climate change – there are significant advantages to going green.

He noted that in terms reducing greenhouse gases solar is second only to wind. In one month, Mr. Hare noted that a 1 kWh solar system prevents 170 lbs. of coal from being burned and 300 lbs. of CO2 from being released.

He also noted that 35 million Americans have made switch to solar power and that solar costs are now down given that demand has increased.

He also noted that the recent administrative 30% tariff that was placed on solar related imports will not affect his company’s pricing.

Solar, he informed, is installed every 2.5 minutes in the United States. It is reliable, given that the satellites are powered by solar, it is easily adaptable, there is no need to have someone come out to do maintenance, they monitor the system from afar if something goes wrong.

Member Andrea Kenner asked Mr. Hare to speak to the structural integrity needed, e.g. if the roof secures a leak what happens. Mr. Hare noted that the company offers a roof penetration warranty and that they do not install on roofs that do not have the right integrity. If the owner wishes to change their roof at a later date, the company will come out to remove and replace the system, nominal charge for the service. He also noted that Solar Energy emerged out of a merger between a solar company and a roofing company. If a new roof is needed prior to installation, they are able to replace the roof at cost.

He further explained that the installation method used by Solar Energy avoids damage, when bolts are used they can sometimes explode – his company uses a “rail system.” They do not offer systems that track the sun and HOAs he noted can restrict the mode of installation but legislatively, they cannot refuse homeowners who wish to install a system.

Member Carol Hurwitch asked about shade coverage, how can a potential consumer know how much of the roof will need to be covered in relation to shade and the orientation of the room. Mr. Hare noted that his company works with software that simulates shade given pitch and weather history for your zip code. They come out and do sun-eye readings before designing a system. He advised folks that it is always better to have the company come out rather than assume that your home was subject to too much shade for solar. He advised against purchasing a solar back-up battery system at this point, noting that the technology was still very much in its infancy.

Member Hurwitch asked about the company’s willingness to work with community co-ops, if there was a critical mass in order to facilitate a discount. He noted that the company does offer this possibility but the number has to be fairly substantial to be cost effective, they recently won a bid in Montgomery County, but this was a grouping of 150 people.

Federal and State Subsidies
Mr. Hare then noted that there are a number of incentives to help offset the cost of installation. These include:

  •  Federal Residential Renewable Energy Tax Credit of 30% of qualified expenses, which rolls over if not all claimed in a given year e.g. a 30,000 system would yield a 9,000 Fed. Tax credit. This is locked in at 30% through 2019.

State and Local Solar Incentives

  • $1000 Maryland Energy Administration (MEA) state grant for systems that are smaller than 20 kilowatts (kW), is located at your primary residence, and that your installer has the standard certification.
  • For residents in PG County there is a $5000 property tax grant for purchasing or a $2000 grant for leasing.

He also noted that it is possible to sell your SRECs solar credits (energy generated but not used)– he did however alert the Association to the fact that SREC credits are more beneficial in DC than in Maryland. In Maryland 1SREC = $8.00, in DC it is worth $400.00 (supply/demand – greater buy in for solar in Maryland)

Member Andrea Kenner raised the question of aesthetics– the panels just aren’t attractive, what might that do to the value of your home.

Mr. Hare noted that the newer panels are flat black and tend to be a bit more attractive. He noted that a Berkeley study found that the installation added value to the home and he also noted that it is factored into Fannie Mae appraisal of homes.

Finally, he summarized by observing that when questioning whether solar is too expensive it is important to remember the incentives, the fact that electricity rates have increased by 4.5% over the last decade, that electricity grids are old, some unsafe and the maintenance of this old system is being passed on to consumers.

He noted that his company offers a very competitive option to purchase $0 incentive financing, 18month delay on repayment to give you time to acquire your tax credit. They also offer financing at 2.99% for 12 years

For those wishing to lease this is possible with the option to purchase at a later point in the agreement. The systems come with a 20-year warranty. And for those interested in leasing, you may not be eligible for the larger incentives but you do get  $2000.00 credit from the county.

He also noted that in terms of home re-sale, it is more likely that your home will be purchased by a younger person, and generationally there is even a greater interest in solar driven homes.

V. COPS Report

President Mickens Mosley conveyed the report on behalf of Cpl. T. We were reminded that if we see something suspicious, we should call 911, if an object, do not pick it up as this tampers with evidence.

VI. New Business

Candidates’ Forum
President Mickens Mosley announced that the Association was working to host a debate for candidates running for Delegate and Council. She noted that the goal was to have it scheduled before the primaries. Invitations will be extended to surrounding associations.

The Executive Board is presently exploring a location for the event.

Member Hermitt Mosley (H) suggested the possibility of a membership meeting in the coming month (March) to help facilitate the process.

President Mickens Mosley noted that the Executive Board would consider a special meeting if planning does not align with Association’s existing schedule of meetings.

Member Carol Hurwitch volunteered to help with the organization of the debate

Clean Up/Green Up

President Mickens Mosley solicited support for the community’s clean-up day. Members who turned out in 2017 were only able to complete Cool Spring Road. Point persons for this upcoming activity are Members Kim Crews and Cynthia Bauer.

Member Hurwitch thanked the invited speakers, and reminded the membership that Tom Dernoga, father of Matt Dernoga, wrote the legal brief that helped the membership to save the Cool Spring Forest.

Motion to adjourn 1:15

Next meeting will be held on April 28, 2018.


CSTCA February Minutes 2018

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Newsletter: February 2018

Message from the President

Hello Neighbors! As mentioned in December, we now publish the CSTCA Newsletter in quarterly editions. Yes, the publication was not due until March, however, we have some important information about residential parking and an exciting workshop planned for our February meeting. We will resume our quarterly publications with the June edition.

NO PARKING ANYTIME areas. Information was sent notifying residents of parking changes. DWPT Installed no parking signage on February 13th in areas they previously designated. Realizing this is news to some, they may provide a grace period to allow time to acclimate. We were told about these changes at our October 2017 meeting by representatives of DPW&T. Additionally, several email notifications were sent and postings on our Website and Facebook page. Enforcement will occur with police patrols; however, enforcement also depends on residents contacting County Click 311 and making a report. Alternatively, one can contact the Revenue Authority. These changes may present an inconvenience, but it is still in the best interest and safety of the community. This also improves pedestrian safety, and helps prevent damage to parked cars.

Great news! We have a Solar Energy Workshop planned for the February meeting. There has been increased interest in solar energy and many homes in the area have already converted to solar energy. The workshop will have representatives available to answer any questions you may have. Come out and participate in this informative event.

Spring is coming and our Walking Group meets each weekend (weather permitting). If you would like to join the Walking Group, we meet each Saturday morning, 7:30 am at the park entrance to the Northwest Branch Trail on Cool Spring Road. Come out…join us…get healthy, get/stay in shape and make new acquaintances. We walk between 3-5 miles each Saturday, which may seem daunting, but time and distance are not noticeable when in great company with lively conversation. We would love to have you join us!

Lastly, the association is always in need of volunteers. If you would like to volunteer some time, let us know. The more active we are, the more we get done. The more we get done, the better our community will become.


In this issue:

  • Message from the President
  • 2018 Meeting Dates
  • TheBus Service / PG County Transit Vision Plan
  • Solar Energy Workshop
  • Areas for NO PARKING ANY TIME
  • Northern Gateway Working Sessions
  • February – Black History Month
  • December Meeting Highlights
  • COPS
  • Important Numbers to Keep
  • Becoming a Member

    CSTCA Newsletter – February 2018

Meeting Minutes: December 2017

Cool Spring Terrace Civic Association Meeting, December 16th, 2017

Officers in Attendance: President Marguerite Mickens-Mosley, Vice President Ikem Ukachu, Treasurer Anika Halota, and Secretary Michelle V. Rowley

Also in Attendance: Councilor Deni Tavares and Representatives from the Department of Public Works and Transportation (DPW&T), Mr. Samuel Isenberg and Ms. Courtney Ward.

Members in Attendance: Approximately 20

Welcome/Gathering

I. The meeting was called to order at 11:13 a.m. with President Mickens‐Mosley presiding.

Announcements and Officers’ Reports

II. Treasurer Halota provided an update on the Association’s account, which presently stands at $1592.

III. The minutes from October 2017 were read and approved.

Agenda Item IV: DPW&T Representatives

DPWT Representative, Ms. Courtney Ward, noted that many people tend not know the breadth of the work done by the Department and provided the Association’s members with an overview their scope of activities. These activities include, for example, the maintenance of approximately 2000 miles of roadway, 3000 acres of grassy area, road maintenance when it snows, storm drains and traffic signals among other things. They are also the umbrella department for the sub offices of Administrative Services, Transportation and Highway Services. By way of additional examples, Ward noted that it is DPW&T’s traffic engineers who assess the need for speed humps in a community; they also hold responsibility for The Bus, which now manages twenty fixed routes, and offers para-transit services such as taking folks to dialysis.
dialysis.

Ms. Ward also informed the Association about their range of community maintenance and beautification programs:

  • Adopt‐a‐Road program– requiring only just four clean up required a year once a site has been selected.
  • Clean Up, Green Up – a spring and fall program that provides communities with the need materials to clean their communities.
  • Neighborhood Design Tree – removal of hazardous trees and replanting program.

The representatives reiterated the importance of using the 311 Click reporting system as the primary reporting mechanism and the best way to get non‐emergency requests into the system.

Members were then able to lay out specific community related concerns, which included:

  • A request to have a felled tree on University removed, left behind by contractors.
  • Replacement of the faded “No U‐Turn” sign on Adelphi and Cool Spring.
  • Request for a flashing pedestrian crossing light on 26th and Adelphi.
  • Need to clean drains. In winter water spills on to Adelphi Road becoming a sliding hazard when it freezes.

The representative, Mr. Isenberg, indicated that he would address these issues in the following week.

Among other concerns raised with the representatives were:

  • The community’s disappointment about the decision to not place a traffic light on Cool Spring and Riggs. The Association maintains that it is a driving hazard for members entering on to Riggs from Cool Spring. Riggs Rd is a state maintained road and the SHA study results did not conclude enough evidence to warrant a traffic light.
  • The lack of follow‐up after complaints made to 311. To this point, they reminded us to place an email contact along with all requests submitted. 311 processes requests in order received but prioritize in terms of emergencies because
  • Need for a sidewalk along Adelphi and University.

The community thanked the representative for the upkeep of median strip along Adelphi.

Mr. Sam Isenberg, who took the community’s transportation specific requests, followed Ms. Ward’s presentation.

As a follow‐up to the community’s inquiries about the parking permit process, the community requested clarification on the process needed to have handicap‐parking 3 signage installed. Isenberg noted that if permit parking is instituted, those individuals who have long‐term help and caretakers will be able to have their caretakers park in the community with the use of handicap‐parking permits, requests for these need to be made to the Motor Vehicle Administrative. It is possible, he noted for a household to have 3‐4 permits, up to 72 hours.

Mr. Isenberg reported on the recently concluded assessment of parking in the community. As part of his general assessment, he noted that cars cannot stay in place for longer than 72 hours, commercial vehicles two hours. He identified a few parking hot spots in need of redress; these include Pawnee, 26th Place, Navajo, Osage and Cool Spring Roads. The department’s primary concern is that emergency vehicles will have difficulty navigating these streets.

To this end, he noted that The Department of Public Works and Transportation has deemed it necessary to mark “no parking zones” at intermittent points along the following streets:

  • Corner of 26th Ave and Cool Spring, extending along 138 feet on Cool Spring (in the direction of Riggs Road)
  • Along 26th Avenue (east side) and along Pawnee and Navajo (north side).

These signs will be intermittent (alternate sides) to allow for sight distance of vehicles (particularly emergency vehicles, school buses), thereby increasing safety of members of the community, cars and incoming vehicles. DPWT has already laid down the street notation. If any of the above is unclear, then look for the white notation that is presently on these streets, these will mark the location of the new signage. DPWT representatives also reminded the membership that parking is not allowed within 30ft of any “STOP” sign.

Agenda Item V: WSSC / HomeServ Curb-to-Home Water Plan Protection

Representatives from WSSC were invited to attend the meeting; they asked for additional time to prepare and will come to February. The WSSC representative who communicated with President Mickens‐Mosley indicated that the HomeServ Protection plan is optional, does not originate from WSSC and is primarily intended for homes with older plumbing systems. WSSC is in the process of repairing the mains and are using HomeServ to provide support for customers should there be any curb to home damage or any related damage that might not be covered by traditional home insurance. They noted that this was the plan that was used in Baltimore during their infrastructure upgrade and is presently 4 being suggested for our area. They recommended getting it as a precaution; members were encouraged to decide after doing their own research.

VI. COPS Report

There were several stolen vehicles with the closest activity being in the Chatham 3400 block.

VII. New Business

Membership was asked to contribute to District 47’s upcoming toy drive, scheduled for December 21st at Mexico Lindo.

The membership extended birthday greetings to Councilor Tavares. President Mickens Mosely represented the Association at her recent birthday bash.

Members of the CSTCA walking group alerted the membership to the gang graffiti tags on the Northwest Branch Trail. This has been reported to the community’s police liaison. If you see any other graffiti tags, please let us know.

Motion to adjourn 12:23 at which point the membership proceeded to their planned Christmas celebration.

Next meeting will be held on February 24, 2018.


CSTCA December Minutes 2017

“No Parking” on Cool Spring Rd at 26th Ave

The following text is quoted from a letter sent to residents along the affected area. Please keep this in mind in case you drive to the NWB trailhead to walk – popular parking spots are no longer allowed!

“Dear Resident:

The Department of Public Works and Transportation (DPW&T) recently investigated parking conditions along the north side of Cool Spring Road in front of your residence and we are writing to inform you of the findings. DPW&T’s Traffic Safety Division determined that vehicles parked along the north side of Cool Spring Road near 26th Avenue create a potential traffic safety concern.

Specifically, we determined that vehicles parked along the north side of the Cool Spring Road are forcing westbound Cool Spring Road motorists to cross the double-yellow center line into the eastbound travel lanes. Over the last three (3) years, this situation has led to several collisions involving vehicles traveling in opposing directions (head-on) and parked vehicles being struck. It should be noted that the Maryland Vehicle Law prohibits vehicles from parking in a manner that decreases the width of the travel lane to less than nine feet wide or forces a motorist to cross the center line of a roadway.

To address this concern, we have determined that the appropriate traffic safety option requires prohibiting parking in this area in order to provide for a travel lane of a  sufficient safe width. In January, DPW&T will install “No Parking Any Time” signs along the north side of Cool Spring Road, beginning at a point approximately 115 feet wets of 26th Avenue and continuing east to a point approximately 400 feet east of 26th Avenue. The parking prohibition area includes the frontages of 2500 Cool Spring Road through 2510 Cool Spring Road and along the side of 8300 6th Avenue. The signs should be installed within the next two (2) to three (3) weeks, weather conditions permitting. Also, we regret to inform you that it is not possible to install “tree box cut-aways” (thereby creating a parking bay) at this location since the width of the pavement is insufficient to accommodate parking and the required two (2) lanes of travel.

While we recognize the inconvenience that the parking prohibition action may create for residents in the area, DPW&T is responsible for providing a safe travel environment for all County citizens. If you have any questions or need additional information, please feel free to contact Mr. Armen Abrahamian, Chief, Traffic Safety Division, Office of Engineering and Project Management, at (301)883-5641.”


CSR “No Parking” letter pdf

Development of Zimmer property: Triangle at Adelphi and Riggs

Thanks to SJ for posting the following information on NextDoor. I’ve reposted it here for increased visibility:

“About 7 years ago a small group of local activists fought off a developer who wanted to put a CVS on the 4+ acre wooded triangle bounded by Riggs and Adelphi Roads, and Edwards Way. There were a host of issues as to why the proposal was a bad idea; one of them was an increase in traffic at that problematic intersection. Now a new application is being filed to put in a Wawa and gas station on that property. Please consider becoming a Person of Record so that you can testify when hearings are held by M-NCPPC. Here is the link for the application; the reference # is 4-17036: http://www.mncppcapps.org/planning/Person_of_Record/default.cfm There will be a presentation on the proposal for interested community members […] If you depend on Riggs Road/Powder Mill Road to get in/out of your neighborhood, you should be concerned! The already awful back-ups will only get worse….”

We will be keeping an eye on this and making sure to relay any information we have on this presentation to our community via this blog and the mailing list. If you sign on as a person of record and provide an e-mail address, you should be contacted when any presentations take place.

Update on “NO PARKING” locations in the CSTCA Community

  • Corner of 26th Ave and Cool Spring Rd., extending along 138 feet on Cool Spring (in the direction of Riggs Road)
  • 26th Avenue (east side) and along Pawnee and Navajo (north side). These signs will be intermittent (alternate sides) to allow for sight distance of vehicles (particularly emergency vehicles, school buses), thereby increasing safety of members of the community, cars and incoming vehicles.

DPWT has already laid down the street notations. If any of the above is unclear, look for the white notations marked on these streets. These will mark the locations for the new signage.

Lastly, parking is prohibited within 30ft of any “STOP” sign.  These measures will be strictly enforced beginning mid-January 2018.  For your convenience, we have included the Maryland Code on Transportation.


Maryland Transportation Section 21-1003 (Article – Transportation)

Meeting Minutes: October 2017

Cool Spring Terrace Civic Association Meeting, October 28th, 2017
Officers in Attendance: President Marguerite Mickens-Mosley, Treasurer Anika Halota, and Secretary Michelle V. Rowle

Members in Attendance: Approximately 20

Welcome/Gathering

The meeting was called to order at 11:06 a.m. with President Mickens-Mosley presiding. Also in attendance were Inspectors Rooks and Elliot, representatives from the Department of Permitting, Inspections and Enforcement (DPIE), as well as, Mr. Michael Harris, Constituent Services Director, Councilor Deni Tavares’ Office.

Announcements and Officers’ Reports

  • Treasurer Halota provided an update on the Association’s account, which presently stands at $1591. 39. Three members paid their dues, there were no expenditures and Treasurer Halota reminded members that they could begin to pay their dues for 2018 now.
  • The minutes from August 2017 were read. A request was made to clarify that our discussion of permit parking included representation by a family member on behalf of his elderly mother. With this amendment recognized, the minutes were approved.

Agenda Item One: Community Policing Update

Corporal Bhaskarnauth Tiwari (Cpl. T) forwarded an overview of crime activity in the community and surrounding areas, this was shared by President Mickens- Mosley.

Reminders were given to remove contents from cars and to lock the doors to ward off possible theft. To this point, members shared recent incidents of theft from vehicles and backyards within the community.

Agenda Item Two: Inspector Rooks and Inspector Elliot – DPIE Representatives

The DPIE inspectors provided an overview of the agency’s departments and their respective areas of oversight. They identified Inspector McLaren, as the first point of contact, if unresponsive, then, Inspector Rooks, asked that we leave a voice message with our concern.

They shared their department’s FAQ pamphlet along with other materials and reminded members that despite any difficulty, it was still important to report issues to Dial Click 311; this process, she noted, will allow your concern to receive a case number.

In addressing the community’s concerns about the increase in rentals, the Inspectors noted that a license is needed for all rentals (115.00/two years). They noted that the licenses are only waived in instances where one is renting to an immediate relative.

Members raised ongoing concerns about parking, in particular the hot spots of 26th and Pawnee. Inspector Rooks asked for additional information to be emailed to her, and while not under her purview she promised to follow up.

Mr. Harris also reminded the membership that Councilor Tavares’ CB37 legislation will help address issues of overcrowding in the community.

Members expressed skepticism with regard to Click 311, the primary concern was their 90-day response window. Inspector Rooks indicated that while 90- days is the stated turn-around time, in practice responses often occur within two weeks.

Members suggested that the Association develop a “welcome sheet” that would outline the community’s expectations of new neighbors. President Mickens Mosley pointed to the Association’s “good neighbor code” and suggested that we scan it and place it on the Association’s website.

Member Hurwitch suggested that the Association’s existing code be expanded to provide guidelines for individuals who have turned their residence into a rental e.g. “If You Must Rent: This is What You Should Know” FAQ sheet.

Members were reminded of the need to be alert to vacant properties to minimize the likelihood of squatting.

Members also made inquiries about “noise pollution” and nuisance houses. We were informed that noise pollution is now assessed via decibel level and not time of day. As a result, a noise complaint could be made regardless of the time of day. With regard to nuisance households, members were encouraged to a) report to the police, b) report to County Click 311 – the latter begins a ticket and with eight complaints within six months the matter is forwarded to the nuisance abatement board. Members were also encouraged to keep the CSR number assigned to the case and to keep their own log of calls made.

Questions were also raised about recent solicitations to acquire curb to house water insurance. Members discussed the legitimacy of these solicitations and asked that a member from WSSC be invited to talk with the membership about the program.

Old Business

Member Robinson provided an update on the quest to secure alternative sites for the middle school. He indicated that Senator Rosapepe was working to contact owners of the woods with an inquiry to purchase; this has turned out to be more difficult than anticipated. With the coming of the Purple Line, there was also the sense that land-owners were waiting for the improved infrastructure before selling.

Members suggested alternative sites for the middle school. Efforts are also being made to have the woods acquired as park lands by Park and Planning. The appropriate office has moved and they have cited this move as the reason for their delayed responses.

Concern about development on the site was raised after members saw surveying and soil sampling activity underway. Inquiries about this activity revealed that the owners are most likely responsible for the work.

Suggestions were made to think about cheaper and more modern, environmentally friendly ways of building – repurposing abandoned warehouses as an example. The membership was also encouraged to be in conversation with Dinora Hernandez, BOE Member. President Mickens-Mosley indicated that an invitation had been extended but that there were scheduling conflicts that made it difficult for her to attend.

Member Robinson noted that there are individuals on the school board who are sympathetic to the community’s concerns and suggested that we also be in conversation with those individuals.

Parking

Vice President Ikem Ukachu was scheduled to provide the membership with an update on the outstanding questions re: parking but was unable to make the meeting. President Mickens Mosely indicated that the update would be sent via email.

Fair Elections

Also present at the meeting was a representative from Progressive Maryland– Diana Torres.

Ms. Torres provided an overview of the organization and invited members to sign on to a petition to constrain the use of big money in election campaigns. The organization is working to build a cadre of small donor financing by providing an alternative way to fund the campaign and strengthening the ability of ordinary citizens to run for office.

New Business

President Mickens Mosley placed a question on the table to change the distribution of the association’s newsletter from every meeting to quarterly or twice a year. The membership voted for a quarterly distribution and asked that email be used if a quick response is needed from the membership. This new cycle will begin in 2018.

Distributors are needed for three areas. Member Hurwitch volunteered to help fill gaps when needed e.g. copying and, or distribution.

Business owners in the community were invited to share their business information with President Mickens Mosley so that it could be included into the newsletter. Free advertising!!

The membership agreed to host a community end of year celebration. The next meeting, scheduled for December 16. This meeting will begin with membership business, followed by community celebrations.

Meeting Adjourned 12:39 Next General Membership Meeting is scheduled for December 16, 2017.


CSTCA October Minutes 2017