Meeting Minutes for February 2019 General Meeting

Call to order – The meeting was called to order at 8:05pm by Chad Salganik

Old Business

Membership drive

Colby Prevost, RCA Treasurer, provided a summary of this year’s membership drive thus far. We have 120 members as of late, who have contributed approximately $5000 to the Randolph Civic Association (RCA). Of the 120 members, approximately 110 have chosen to take advantage of our membership offer that includes a discount card for local businesses. All participating businesses can be found on the RCA’s website: http://randolphcivic.org/about/benefitscard/. Colby said that the RCA had a second rush for members with advertisement in a second Echo newsletter. There was a discussion about when the membership drive for this year would end. We will have one more Echo advertising RCA membership. During this discussion, it was mentioned that the RCA’s spring event, MusicFest, needs to be put on the calendar.

Echo production

The RCA is excited to announce that we have two new neighbors doing production of the Echo, Sarah Balian and Vincent Mui. Their first Echo was fabulous. Sarah will be editing and Vincent is doing layout. The next Echo deadline is to-be-determined.

Winter Beer Garden

Chad reminded attendees that the RCA Winter Beer Garden will occur on February 9, 2019, from 3-8 pm. He stated that we will have both True Respite and 7 locks Brewing selling beer, and cafe 2020 Korean kitchen + bar selling food.

Update on 11422 Ashley Drive

The RCA had recent contact with several members of the Montgomery County local government and provided an update on the house on 11422 Ashley Drive that exploded in March, 2017. Most recently, it was noticed that Montgomery County was not clearing snow. Members of the RCA Executive Board contacted Bethesda Regional Services, our Councilwoman Nancy Navarro, and at-large Councilman Hans Riemer. Regional Services requested that the RCA clear snow on the sidewalks because the County cannot offer residential snow clearing services on the sidewalks.

Upon speaking to Councilman Riemer’s office, the RCA was informed that it appears that all criteria for the house to be repossessed by the bank have been met. Therefore, it appears that the bank formally took ownership of the property in January, 2019. Now that the bank has taken possession, the County can begin to pressure the bank to clean the site and fill the hole that remains.


New Business

March general meeting

The RCA will host several Montgomery County councilmembers at our March general meeting. These councilmembers include Nancy Navarro, Hans Riemer, Will Jawando, and Evan Glass. Chad went into details of the RCA’s past relationship with the Montgomery County Council and that we want to build relationships with many of the new members. Based on recent news, it appears that the County is tightening its budget and we want to make sure that RCA-land is receiving its fair share. Chad stated that the RCA already made a preliminary list of priorities. These include additional crosswalks across the neighborhood, the reopening of Rocking Horse as an elementary school for RCA-land, reimagining Boiling Brook Parkway as a park and not a drainage ditch, joining the Charles Woodward High School cluster when it reopens, path lighting on Garrett Park Road, and fixing the intersection at Rocking Horse Road and Boiling Brook Parkway.

Other neighbors suggested additional priorities. These included a stoplight at Hunters Lane and Randolph Road, speed camera near Hunters Lane and Randolph Road, better County maintenance at Macon/Putnam, increased code enforcement, lining Schuylkill Road for parking, repaving Rocking Horse and Schuylkill Roads, traffic circle at Rocking Horse/Boiling Brook Parkway, and traffic calming measures that are not speed bumps.

At the end of this discussion, Chad recommended that we bucket these ideas and prioritize them before our March general meeting. It was also discussed that in the past, County Agencies used to do a drive along with the RCA to discuss ongoing issues in the neighborhood, and we hope to do this again in the future.

Donation to Historical Society

Former RCA President, Richard Zierdt, recently gave the RCA board a large quantity of historical documents. These documents included old Echos, correspondence with the County, and information about lawsuits. After sorting, collation, and scanning as appropriate, these documents were recently donated to the Montgomery County Historical Society. After some discussion, Brian Hooker motioned to donate $100 to the Historical Society. The motion was seconded by Mara Greengrass. The motion passed unanimously.

Garrett Park Road Bridge Closure

In 2022, Garrett Park Road at Beach Drive will shut down during the summer while the County demolishes and rebuilds the bridge over Rock Creek. In general, the RCA was happy with the plan, which includes a pedestrian and bike-friendly design. There will be a public meeting on February 26 at Viers Mill Elementary School to discuss the construction project.

Montrose Parkway East (MPE)

This project has been planned since the 1980s. The RCA has recently been neutral on MPE because we assumed it was a done deal. Additionally, there are positive and negative effects on RCA-land that have made a consensus position difficult. MPE was recently removed from the Capital Improvements Program (CIP, see https://apps.montgomerycountymd.gov/BASISCAPITAL/Common/Index.aspx). The County did not permanently remove MPE, but is only funding $1 million for a new study.

The RCA is concerned about RCA-land not receiving money for our infrastructure. For example, the northern entrance to White Flint Metro was also removed from the CIP. One neighbor spoke up that Franklin Park specifically is concerned about a potential connection to Gaynor, though it was not included in the plan. If Franklin Park had assurances, they may be more supporting of the MPE plan. The RCA thought the bike connectivity would have been a plus for RCA-land.

Standard business and reports

Approval of prior meeting minutes

Chad motioned for approval of prior meeting minutes. The motion was seconded by many. The motion passed unanimously.

Treasurer’s report

Colby said that he plans to provide a Treasurer’s report for each Echo. Colby noted that the RCA’s budget went up this year. The County grant that we received for the White Flint Placemaking Event helped with some costs associated with planning that event. Colby would like to also find new ways of getting advertising revenue, such as smaller ads or additional grants. We’re also aiming for 350-400 members this year.

Committee chair reports

Safety

Diane Bertocchi stated that the police advisory committee meets in the last week of March. She also noted that there was a NextDoor report of someone’s hose being snipped. Diane encouraged all neighbors to report all criminal or suspect activity that occurs in RCA-land. This will result in additional patrols if there is a spike. RCA-land remains an extremely safe area.

As an aside, one neighbor discussed that there is occasionally a homeless encampment in between Franklin Park and the Parklawn cemetery. He has heard gunshots at night where people are hunting deer, also.

Environment
There was no report at this month’s meeting.

Meeting adjournment

Chad moved to adjourn. The motion was seconded by many and the motion passed unanimously at 9:25 pm.