About Councilmember Navarro

I serve as the Council Vice-President and the Montgomery County Councilmember representing District 4. I am the chair of the Government Operations and Fiscal Policy Committee and also serve on the Health and Human Services Committee.

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December 30, 2011

Season's Greetings and News from Councilmember Navarro

Councilmember Navarro
In this Issue:

Social Media "Klout"

Like me on Facebook

Follow me on Twitter
Dear Friends,

I want to wish you and your family a very happy holiday season. The holidays are a great time to reflect on the past year and begin planning for the future. This year, we reinstated the "Kids Ride Free" program, increased Police funding to protect our neighborhoods, and laid the groundwork to support Positive Youth Development Programming. The Council made difficult budget decisions and our public employees have been more than patient while the economic outlook slowly improves.

As I look forward to 2012, I see challenges and opportunities ahead. The preliminary economic outlook has improved somewhat, but we know that we're not out of the woods yet. More belt tightening will be necessary to get through another tough budget year, but we need to begin the process of making investments to help those with the greatest need in our County.

Thank you again for your support and for making 2011 such a great year to serve on the Council. As always, if I can ever be of assistance, please do not hesitate to call me at (240) 777-7968 or e-mail me atcouncilmember.navarro@montgomerycountymd.gov.

Happy Holidays and Happy New Year!

Councilmember Nancy Navarro
District 4Klout
Help Me Increase My "Klout"

In every e-mail newsletter I send, I ask you to
 "Like me on Facebook" and "Follow me on Twitter." I do this because social media is the best way to get information about what is happening at the County Council (and in the world!) in real-time. The Wheaton Patch published an article last week, showing that I have the highest "Klout" score on the Council. Klout is a website that analyzes social media influence and the reach of your followers. Although I'm proud to have such an "influential" network, I know we need to keep growing. Please send this email to at least 5 of your friends who live in Montgomery County and ask them to "Like me on Facebook" and "Follow me on Twitter." Increasing my social media "klout" will help me build real clout on the Council so I can get more accomplished for my constituents. 
Pepco Fined $1 million by PSC, Asks for Rate Increase
This week, the Maryland Public Service Commission (PSC) fined Pepco $1 million for sub-par tree trimming practices and poor communication during last year's summer storms that left many Montgomery County residents without electricity. The PSC said they will levy future fines on Pepco if they cannot produce a new, 5-year plan by February 21st that addresses these issues. You can read the full PSC Order here.
At the same time, Pepco is asking the PSC to allow a $68 million rate increase on customers. The company says this will translate to more than $5.50 a month increase for the average ratepayer. They say they need this increase to improve reliability, but I think Pepco's shareholders and executives should pay for their lack of maintenance for all these years. Pepco should prove that they are serious about improving reliability and service quality before ratepayers are asked to pay any more than we already do.

Kiosk Library Service Coming to Olney

Starting early next year, Olney community residents will have kiosk library service at the Longwood Recreation Center (19300 Georgia Ave. in Brookeville) while the Olney Library is under renovation. The kiosk library service will include:
  • Circulation of current titles for both children and adults in a book vending machine;
  • Circulation of media (DVDs, potentially CDs) in a media vending machine;
  • Pick-up of customer holds in a materials locker system; and
  • Drop-off of library materials via an internal book drop.   
This service will ensure that the Olney community has convenient access to some form of library services during the remainder of the renovation period for the Olney Library. Thanks to the Montgomery County Public Libraries (MCPL), Department of Recreation, and the Department of General Services (DGS) for making this happen! Thanks also to all of the residents of Olney for your patience during the renovation and implementation of the kiosk at the Longwood Recreation Center.

For more information about the Olney project, and to see updates on the Olney interim service project, visit the Olney Library page.
Small Business Spotlight: Green Apple Market

"Small Business Spotlight" is a new feature in my newsletter to showcase small businesses in District 4. Small businesses are the engine of our economy. They provide jobs and enhance the unique character of our neighborhoods.  If you would like your small business highlighted in a future newsletter, please e-mail me.
The first small business I would like to highlight is Green Apple.Opened since August 2011, Green Apple is a family-owned and run convenience store located on New Hampshire Avenue in Colesville. Its owner, Reza Pishva, says that his goal was to bring "a different type of convenience store, unique to the community." He bought the location two years ago and since then has been upgrading and renovating it. 
The name emphasizes the healthy and organic food options offered throughout the store from homemade soups, paninis made on daily-delivered fresh bread, yogurt, ice cream, fresh fruits and produce, among many other things you would find at a convenience store. 

Apart from being a convenience store, Green Apple offers a cafĂ©-style neighborhood spot with tables and chairs inside and outside in a patio for eating, studying or just conversing. Wi-Fi will soon be available and Mr. Pishva welcomes students and neighbors to come enjoy his store. 

Green Apple is located at 12830 New Hampshire Avenue, Silver Spring, MD 20904. For more information please call 301-622-6767 or email at greenappleconvinience@gmail.comComBoard
Community Bulletin Board

Remember Your Reusable Bag Starting January 1st

Beginning January 1st, Montgomery County stores will charge 5-cents for paper and plastic disposable bags. If you want to "keep the change," be sure to bring a reusable bag to the grocery store. The Council passed the bag-fee earlier this year to help pay for environmental protection efforts. You can read more about the new law, including a "frequently asked questions" section, on the County website.CERB
Committee Evaluation and Review Board Search Continues

The County Executive has extended the application deadline to serve on the Committee Evaluation and Review Board (CERB) until December 28, 2011. The CERB is responsible for producing a report about County committees, commissions, and boards every 10 years. An application, consisting of a brief cover letter and resume, should be sent by mail to County Executive Isiah Leggett, 101 Monroe Street, 2nd Floor, Rockville, MD  20850, or by e-mail.  

You can find more information about committee, board, and commission vacancieshere.CitizenBoard

Vacancies on Silver Spring, Mid- and East-County Citizens Advisory Boards

These important boards serve as a liaison between the community and the County Executive, County Council, and County Government. They advise the Regional Services Center Director on transportation, economic development, housing, education, human services, environment, recreation, public safety, and other issues of importance to the area. They review and comment on the County's capital and operating budgets and master plans; assist with strategies to tailor services to regional needs; conduct workshops and forums: and act on other ad hoc issues.

Applicants of diverse backgrounds, professions, gender, geography, disability and ethnicity are encouraged to apply. An application, consisting of a brief cover letter and resume, should be sent by mail to County Executive Isiah Leggett, 101 Monroe Street, 2nd Floor, Rockville, MD  20850, or by e-mail. Home and employment addresses, as well as contact phone numbers and email addresses should be included. For more information, contact Beth Gochrach, 240-777-2528.

You can find more information about committee, board, and commission vacancieshereRecBoard

Vacancies on Recreation Advisory Boards

The recreation boards advise the County Executive, County Council, the director of the Department of Recreation and the Planning Board on regional recreation needs; encourage the development of desirable parks and recreational opportunities; and advise and make recommendations to appropriate officials on matters concerning budgets, recreation programs, services, and facilities. The regional boards have nine regular members and two alternates, and members must reside in one of the four regions. To determine the region in which you reside or for specific information on regional board meetings, please call 240-777-2528. Residents who live within the city limits of Rockville, Gaithersburg or Washington Grove are not eligible for membership on recreation boards.FutureLink


Future Link Classes in Rockville Starting Soon

Earlier this month, I had the opportunity to address the graduates of Future Link at Montgomery College. Future Link is a 14-week self-advocacy, academic, and career-support program for 16 to 25-year-old young adults. This is a great opportunity for young people who are in need of direction to get back on the right track. You can read more about Future Link and the young people it serves here.  

Future Link is offering a 14-week seminar beginning Tuesday, January 24th at Montgomery College Rockville Campus. The program runs through May 1st (graduation). For more information, contact executive director Mindi Jacobson.  Habitat

Habitat for Humanity Info Session

Habitat for Humanity of Montgomery County, Maryland Inc. is hosting information sessions in January and February 2012 on how to purchase one of 19 affordable townhomes in Gaithersburg through Habitat's zero interest loan program.  For more information on program eligibility and information session dates please visit the Habitat for Humanity Montgomery County website or call 301-990-0014 x26.  Household incomes ranging from the high $30,000 to low $70,000 (based upon household size) may be eligible.

Already own a home but looking for energy improvements?  You may be eligible for Habitat's FREE home weatherization services.
 Contact Me:
Phone: 240-777-7968

Councilmember Nancy Navarro
100 Maryland Avenue
Rockville, MD 20850

Like me on Facebook  Follow me on Twitter
This email was sent to wil.gutierrez@montgomerycountymd.gov by councilmember.navarro@montgomerycountymd.gov  
Councilmember Nancy Navarro | 100 Maryland Avenue | Rockville | MD | 20904
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December 14, 2011

News from Councilmember Navarro

Dear Friends,

I'm pleased to announce that this past Tuesday the Council elected my colleague Councilmember Roger Berliner to serve as Council President and I was elected to serve as Council Vice President. Being part of the Council's leadership team is a great honor and responsibility. I appreciate the trust my colleagues have placed in me and I look forward to continuing our important work for the residents of Montgomery County.

I would like to congratulate Council President Berliner and I look forward to working with him for the coming year. Together, we will continue to protect our most valuable services while promoting economic development opportunities. You can watch Tuesday's Council Session on the Council website.  

I also want to take this opportunity to remind you to like me on Facebook and follow me on Twitter. This is the best way to stay up-to-date on the latest news about Montgomery County and the progress of my agenda.

Finally, I would like to wish you and your family a joyous and safe holiday season!

As always, please e-mail me or call my office at (240) 777-7968 if I can ever be of assistance.


Councilmember Nancy Navarro
District 4Curfew
Curfew Update
At the Council session on Tuesday, we discussed  the County Executive's curfew proposal. By a 6-3 vote, the Council decided to table the issue. I voted with the majority because I was not comfortable with giving the Executive unlimited authority to institute a youth curfew for an indefinite period of time. I supported tabling the proposal because I believe there are questions that continue to remain unanswered about the need for a curfew. The Council can revisit this proposal again at anytime if necessary. 

Last year, I voted to give the Montgomery County Police Department a $2 million enhancement to increase patrols in Silver Spring and East County. Since the enhancement has taken effect in downtown Silver Spring, we have seen a reduction in crime. I believe this targeted approach to law enforcement, along with an enhancement to programs that target at-risk youth and families, is the best way to reduce juvenile crime in our County. 
Welcome to District 4!

Last week, the Council unanimously passed the Montgomery County Redistricting Commission's map redrawing Council District boundaries. These new boundaries will take effect officially in the spring. However, I wanted to take this opportunity to welcome my new constituents in Wheaton, Olney, Kensington View, Randolph Hills, Laytonsville, and other neighborhoods to District 4! In a future e-mail, I will discuss the new district boundaries in more detail and provide a "farewell" message to my current constituents--including Burtonsville, Fairland, and Leisure WorldWheaton
Creating a New Urban Future in Wheaton

Also last week, the Council unanimously passed the Wheaton Sector Plan. As discussed in a previous e-mail, the Wheaton Sector Plan is designed to help Wheaton develop to its full potential through a combination of zoning, traffic, and height and density changes. These improvements will not take place overnight, but will have significant long-term benefits for Wheaton's economic future.

The plan calls for increased density to allow for more residential, office, and commercial uses near the Metro Station. The Council also worked to ensure the single-family houses in the surrounding areas were protected during the redevelopment process. We inserted additional language in the Sector Plan to protect the trees between Wheaton Mall and the adjacent neighborhoods.

I am also working with my colleagues to ensure the small businesses in Wheaton continue to thrive, even with the new development opportunities available through this plan. Wheaton's small businesses give it the unique character that makes it such a great place to live, work and play. Through economic development and technical assistance opportunities, we will ensure Wheaton continues to maintain its distinctive character.

The Wheaton Sector Plan creates a vision for a new urban future that promotes mixed use development, smart growth and economic opportunity for residents of Wheaton and the surrounding community.  Board    
Community Bulletin Board  
Teen Escape Club's Penguin Ball: A Middle School Semi-Formal!

I am proud to announce that the Teen Escape Club (TEC) continues to provide excellent, positive programming for our youth in the East County. Now, also providing programming for our middle school students.  Tonight, the Teen Escape Club will host its first-ever
Penguin Ball, a middle school semi-formal featuring DJ G-Tek and Young Motive. The event,  put together by TEC's high school participants, will be held at the East County Community Center (3310 Gateshead Manor Way, Silver Spring). There will be prizes for the best dressed, best dancer, cutest pair, best energy, and king and queen of the ball. Admissions is $3 for one, $5 for two, or free with an "After Hours" membership. The admissions tickets includes a free professional picture and light refreshments. Students are also encouraged to bring canned goods for exchange for raffle tickets. Students can bring as many canned foods as they wish. Students are encourage register online at montgomerycountymd.gov/rec or by calling 240-777-6818.
Dates for the next Teen Escape Club events are:
  • January 13
  • February 13
  • March 2
  • April 13
  • May 4
  • June 1
Final Leaf Collection and Winter Storm Alerts

The second and final round of leaf collection in underway through December. You can check if your street is in the Leaf Collection District and find the 2011 Sign Posting Log on the County website.

Before the first major snowfall hits, be sure to sign up for Alert Montgomery for the latest information on severe weather. You can track power outages in the Pepco service territory using the Storm Center website and BGE customers can visit the outage map

UPDATE: Suspect Arrested for Theft Schemes Involving Vulnerable Adults

Last week, the police arrested a man in connection with the exploitation of vulnerable adults.  Over the course of approximately one year this suspect financially exploited four victims in Montgomery County who he perceived to have mental and physical disabilities or deficiencies. The police are concerned that there may be additional victims of suspect's exploitation.  If someone believes that he/she may have been a victim or believes a loved one may have been victimized, please call the 4th District Community Service Officer at 240-773-5524.

Man Suspected of Westfield Mall Attacks Arrested

The man suspected of being responsible for committing three kidnappings and carjackings at the Westfield Shopping Center in Wheaton was arrested at his home in Prince George's County last week. I want to commend both the Montgomery County and Prince George's County Police for working together to find the person responsible for these terrible crimes over Thanksgiving weekend. 
Police Offer Holiday Season Safety Tips

In light of recent incidents, Montgomery County Police have provided us with this comprehensive list of tips to help keep residents safe while shopping, while walking, and while at home.  While opportunities for robberies and burglaries increase during the holiday season, many robberies and burglaries can be prevented by keeping these safety tips in mind.

When shopping:
  • Do not become distracted by your shopping.  Stay alert and be aware of your surroundings at all times.
  • Park in well-lit parking lots and park as close to the mall or store as possible.
  • Lock your car doors and keep packages hidden in the trunk of or under the seats of your vehicle.
  • Do not carry large amounts of cash with you and pay with checks or credit cards when possible.
  • Ensure that you are not encumbered with a large number of packages.  Try to make trips back to your vehicle to store packages in the trunk as you continue to shop.
  • Carry your closed purse as close to your body as possible.
  • Carry a wallet in an inside coat or front pants pocket.
When out walking:
  • Wherever you are, on the street, in an office building or shopping mall, or waiting for a bus or the subway, stay alert and aware of your surroundings.
  • Walk with confidence and know where you are going.
  • Trust your instincts; if something or someone makes you uneasy, avoid the person or leave the area.
  • Stick to well-lighted and well-traveled streets.  Avoid shortcuts through wooded areas, parking lots, or alleys.
  • Do not flash large amounts of cash or other tempting targets like expensive jewelry or clothing.
  • Have your car or house key in hand before you reach the door.
  • If you think that someone is following you, switch directions or cross the street and walk toward an open store, restaurant, or lighted house.
If someone does try to rob you, don't resist.  Give up your property - do not endanger your life.  Report the crime to police as soon as possible, and try to describe the attacker accurately. Your rapid reporting of the incident may prevent others from becoming victims.

When at home:
  • If your Christmas tree can be seen through a window, do not display presents under the tree where they could be seen.
  • Make sure to lock doors and windows.
  • If you are going away for the holiday, let a neighbor know that your home will not be occupied and have someone pick up your mail and newspapers.
  • Used time lights to give the appearance that someone is at home.
  • After the holidays, be sure to break down card boards boxes from gifts for recycling so that a potential burglar does not know your home has a new computer, TV, video game system, etc.
Keep these safety tips in mind to help ensure that everyone has a safe and happy holiday season.
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