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Welcome to my blog, which features frequent updates on local Takoma Park issues, including City Council meeting agendas, plus occasional commentary on national news and politics.

November 2, 2016 City Council Agenda

Dear Neighbors:

The following is a link to the agenda for the November 2, 2016 City Council meeting: https://takomaparkmd.gov/meeting_agendas/city-council-meeting-agenda-wednesday-november-2-2016/Key issues include votes on approval of the next round of Community Grants, and allocation of Community Development Block Grant funding. In addition we’ll be voting on a technical change relating to parking meter zones, and there will be a discussion on a proposal from a group of residents to establish a memorial “scatter garden.” Following the regular session, the Council will meet with the City Manager in an administrative function session to discuss her evaluation and goals. Administrative function sessions are not open to the public.

Scatter Garden.  https://documents.takomaparkmd.gov/government/city-council/agendas/2016/council-20161102-1.pdf

A group of residents is requesting that an area of City-owned park land be designated in perpetuity as a place for people to bring the cremated remains of their loved ones, something that is also known as a scatter garden. This will be an initial discussion only; there is no formal proposal on the table for consideration at this time. I appreciate the creativity of those who are proposing this idea, and I agree that it would likely be of benefit to a number of residents in the community. But I am still giving thought to whether it’s the kind of project in which it makes sense for the City government to have a role.

Parking Meter Zones.  https://documents.takomaparkmd.gov/government/city-council/agendas/2016/council-20161102-2.pdf

This will be a preliminary vote on eliminating an outdated provision of our local ordinances relating to parking meters (with the final vote in an upcoming Council meeting). I will be voting in favor of eliminating the provision. This will not have any direct impact on the larger Parking Management Study that is underway. As I noted previously, residents have until November 7 to respond to the City survey about the parking recommendations, and I encourage those who haven’t yet done so to fill out and submit the survey before the deadline, which you can do here: https://takomaparkmd.gov/initiatives/project-directory/parking-study/.   I will send out a separate email with my views on the parking recommendations and the comments that have been offered by residents about those recommendations.

Community Grants.  https://documents.takomaparkmd.gov/government/city-council/agendas/2016/council-20161102-3.pdf

The City has budgeted $60,000 for the Community Quality of Life Grants, and the City Grants Committee has considered the grant applications and made recommendations for funding of eight organizations, each of which would receive between $5,000 and $10,000. The Council previously discussed and gave tentative approval to the list. This week’s vote will make the awards official.  I think the organizations and initiatives will have a positive impact on the community, and I will be voting in favor of the list.

Community Development Block Grants.  https://documents.takomaparkmd.gov/government/city-council/agendas/2016/council-20161102-5.pdf

The City is receiving $91,000 in Federal CDBG funding, which we are setting aside for capital projects. We’ll be voting on a resolution to allocate these funds for various streetscape projects in the designated low and moderate income areas within the City that are eligible under Federal guidelines for CDBG funding. I will be voting in favor of the resolution.

Please feel free to be in touch if you have questions or comments about any of these matters.

Peter Kovar, Takoma Park City Council, Ward One



November 9, 2016 Takoma Park City Council Agenda

Agenda for October 26, 2016 City Council Meeting