Each fall, the Montgomery County Delegation (the State Delegates and State Senators you send to Annapolis) hosts a series of meetings in Rockville including a meeting with the Maryland Department of Transportation on the Consolidated Transportation Program, priorities hearing where you can testify about what matters to you, and hearings on local legislation. You can see the dates for this year's meetings here.
One of my ongoing legislative efforts has been to put Maryland at the forefront of energy storage technology. Batteries, flywheels, and other technology can be paired with renewable energy sources such as wind or solar to better deploy such renewables and make our electric grid more efficient. Maryland's institutions of higher education have been national leaders in researching energy storage and several spin-off companies have been created from these research efforts. I was pleased to help organize a letter of my colleagues to the Maryland Department of Commerce seeking their support for a federal funding opportunity related to energy storage. Click here to read the letter.
Program Open Space takes the state's transfer tax and puts it towards open space preservation and park programs. Counties apply to the state for a portion of the funds and Montgomery County has recently submitted its plans for this year's funds: The plans include funding for the Josiah Henson Park in North Bethesda.
Last fall, I joined Councilman Berliner, my District 16 colleagues, and others in a "Day of Action" to bring attention to safety issues along two state roads: River Road (MD 190) and Massachusetts Avenue (MD 396). We sent a follow-up letter to the Maryland Department of Transportation shortly thereafter, which can be viewed here. It took an excessive seven months, but the state Transportation Secretary has sent a reply pledging to work with us on both short-term and long-term solutions.
Metro's SafeTrack effort has been proceeding relatively smoothly this summer. I consider this a mixed bag, as a good deal of SafeTrack's "success" is because many riders have been able to move to alternatives with relative ease. Will those riders ever return to the system? Moreover, while I applaud Metro taking radical action, my attitude with Metro is trust but verify when it comes to their work. I hope these repairs are actually rebuilding the system for the long-term, but time will tell. The SafeTrack Red Line work begins this August. Click here for the full schedule.
District 16 Notes
Senior Leadership Class: Sally Cameron, Robin Chernoff, Eric Grosse, Isadora Hare, Andrea Huber, Gabrielle Korab, Betsy Loyless, Grant and Margaret Moy, Margo Reid, Judith Saks, Ruth Spodak, and Dorothy Unger
Core: Alvin Carlos, Susan Esserman, Melissa Graves, Deborah Lindenberg, Regina Oldak, Samir Paul, and Sonya Sbar.
If you know of a District 16 resident who merits recognition or condolences, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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