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This Week in Potomac and Civic Calendar 4-6-05

WEST MONTGOMERY MEETING APRIL 13

The West Montgomery County Citizens Association's April general meeting will take place at the Potomac Library April 13 at 8 p.m.

The guest speaker will be state Del. Jean B. Cryor (R-15). Now serving her fourth term in the House of Delegates, Cryor is the ranking Republican on the Ways and Means Committee. She is president of the Women Legislators of Maryland. Cryor was an active member of West Montgomery when she was elected to the legislature.

The meeting will also feature presentations by Potomac Elementary second grader Nick Lowenthal and Hoover Middle School eighth-grader Chelsea Fechter about their science fair projects, which were awarded WMCCA Honored Project blue ribbons.

UNDERAGE DRINKING PARTIES PERSIST

On Saturday, April 2 at approximately 10:15 p.m., Montgomery County Police officers responded to Rapley Gate Terrace in Potomac for the report of an underage drinking party. The parents were at home and knew that teens were socializing at their home. They were not aware that the teens had brought alcohol into the house using recycled spring water bottles. The parents found out when one of the girls became drunk and lost consciousness. Fire and rescue transported her to an area hospital where she was treated and released. When officers arrived, they wrote 13 alcohol citations: 10 for possession of alcohol and three for furnishing alcohol. One of the female party attendees refused to drink even though all of her other friends were drinking, according to police.

With the prom and graduation seasons quickly approaching, the Montgomery County Police Alcohol Initiatives Section wishes to remind the parents of teenagers to be particularly cautious of possible drinking parties taking place when they are away from home, and to be aware that teenagers may smuggle alcohol into a party even when the parents are at home. They offered the following advice:

* It is illegal to host a party where minors drink alcohol, or even to allow teen drinking in your home. Adults could receive a $1,000 fine. Parents will be held civilly liable if sued by another parent. Injuries, alcohol poisoning, or sexual assault may result in law suits. The parent may be held responsible even if the parent wasn’t at home, or didn’t know about the party.

* Before leaving teens unsupervised, parents should set and communicate clear rules to be followed in the parents’ absence including no parties or gatherings while you are gone. Be direct about expectations and the consequences of the child’s actions.

* Give your teen the phone numbers of several adults to call in case of an emergency and contact your local district police to check your property during routine patrols. Finally, notify neighbors to keep an eye out for any unusual activity at your home while your teen(s) are unsupervised.

For tips on how to host an alcohol-free party for teens or to report advance knowledge of an underage party, call 301-670-SAFE.  If someone has knowledge of a party in progress, or if a party becomes dangerous call the police non-emergency number 301-279-8000.

COMMENT ON POLICY CHANGE

May 9 is the deadline for public comment on the Montgomery County Board of Education's proposed changes to Policy FAA, which deals with long range facilities planning — including school construction, school closures, and redistricting — and public comment in the planning process.

Copies of the draft policy and an operational framework containing proposed regulatory language are available from the MCPS Public Information Office by calling 301-279-3391 or on the MCPS web site at www.montgomeryschoolsmd.org.

Written comments should be sent to the Office of the Superintendent of Schools, 850 Hungerford Drive, Rockville, Md. 20850.

FREE TUTORING AT COMMUNITY CENTER

Winston Churchill High School students will conduct two nights of free tutoring at the Potomac Community Center April 12 and 13 from 4-7 p.m. each day. The tutors are available to students of all ages and can help with all school subjects. In addition to answering specific questions, the tutors will offer study tips and advice on homework and test-taking. Parents and siblings are welcome and there will be games and activities.

The events are sponsored by Peer-to-Peer, a tutoring company. For more information call Adam Jaffe at 301-467-9608.

RIVER FESTIVAL AT ROCKWOOD MANOR

Potomac Paddlesports, river advocacy organizations and local kayakers will jointly host a fundraising event and open house to raise money for river preservation and awareness of conservation issues related to the Potomac. The event will be held at Rockwood Manor Park on April 23, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Festivities will include a silent auction, paddle-a-thon, free kayak clinics and demos, a kayak flea market, food and drink, a raffle, live music. Local organizations will also be on hand to provide information about river conservation issues.

From 9 a.m.-noon, experienced boaters will compete in a three-hour marathon race around the Mather Gorge, the section of the Potomac just below Great Falls.

The host organizations hope to raise at least $50,000 for river preservation, which will be donated to local non-profits including the Potomac Conservancy and the Potomac River Keeper. The event is free and open to the public, but a $10 donation is suggested. For more information visit www.potomacpaddlesports.com or call 301-831-8270.

A CAPPELLA GROUP WILL PERFORM

Out of the Blue, an all-male a cappella group from Oxford University will perform special concert at the Potomac Presbyterian Church on Friday, April 8 at 8 p.m.

Since its inception by Potomac's own Derek Smith in 2000, Out of the Blue has toured to eight countries and over thirty cities, recorded four albums, and has given command performances to Bill Clinton and Nelson Mandela.

The group sings a diverse range of music from 1920s barbershop to rock and pop hits.

Potomac Presbyterian Church is located at 10301 River Road in Potomac. call 301-299-6007 for more information. Out of the Blue's Web site is www.ootb.org.uk.

CHURCHILL FOOTBALL REUNION

The 1977 and 1978 state champion Churchill football teams are holding a reunion April 8-10 at Pooks Hill Marriott. For more information, call Jay Dove at 240-643-0046 or Jim Hamm at 301-983-0446.

CIVIC CALENDAR

Thursday, April 7, 7 p.m.

Public hearing on County Executive Doug Duncan's proposed FY06 Operating Budget and amendments to the FY05-FY10 Capital Improvements Plan.

At the Council Office Building, 3rd floor hearing room, 100 Maryland Avenue, Rockville. To testify call 240-777-7931.

Thursday, April 7, 7:30 p.m.

The Montgomery County Planning Board and the Montgomery County Recreation Advisory Boards invite the public to participate in a forum on park and recreation projects to be included in the proposed fiscal year 2007-2012 Capital Improvements Program (CIP), Thursday, April 7, 7:30 p.m., at 8787 Georgia Avenue, Silver Spring. Those who wish to testify may sign up in advance to speak by calling 301-650-2890 prior to noon on April 7. If space is still available, speakers may sign up at the forum. Public testimony will be limited to 50 speakers. Written comments may be sent to Derick P. Berlage, Chairman, Montgomery County Planning Board, 8787 Georgia Avenue, Silver Spring, Maryland 20910. Fax comments to 301-495-1320 or e-mailmcp-chairman@mncppc-mc.org. For more information or for assistance for those with special needs, contact Marion Joyce, community relations manager: 301-495-4600, TTY 301-495-1331.

Monday, April 11, 7 p.m.

County Council hearing on County Executive Doug Duncan's proposed FY06 Operating Budget for Montgomery County Public Schools.

At the Council Office Building, 3rd floor hearing room, 100 Maryland Avenue, Rockville. To testify call 240-777-7931.

Wednesday, April 13, 7:30 p.m.

The Montgomery County Council’s Private Institutional Facilities (PIF) Working Group will hold a public forum to discuss options for addressing environmental concerns regarding private institutional facilities locating in RDT (Rural Density Transfer) and Rural Estate zones.

The Working Group consists of staff from the Maryland-National Park and Planning Commission, the Department of Permitting Services, the Department of Environmental Protection, County Attorney, and the County Council Central Staff. The County Council’s Transportation and Environment Committee asked Council Staff to form an interagency Working Group to review the Private Institutional Facilities (PIF) issue with regard to its impact on the RDT and Rural Estate zones and provide recommendations for changes that would balance the needs of private institutional facilities with the County’s interest in avoiding and/or minimizing environmental impacts of PIF uses in these zones. The Working Group intends to provide a report to the Transportation and Environment Committee in May.

Those wishing to speak at the forum should contact Keith Levchenko at 301-428-1525 or keith.levchenko@montgomerycountymd.gov. Forum participants and others interested in the issue are also encouraged to provide written comments to the Working Group.

County Council Building, 100 Maryland Avenue in Rockville, 3rd Floor Conference Room.

Monday, April 18, 7 p.m.

April meeting of the Western Montgomery County Citizens Advisory board at the Glen Echo Town Hall, 6106 Harvard Avenue, Glen Echo, 301-320-4041. The meeting agenda has not yet been announced.

Monday, May 9

Deadline for public comment on the Montgomery County Board of Education's proposed changes to Policy FAA, which deals with long range facilities planning — including school construction, school closures, and redistricting — and public comment in the planning process. The current version and proposed revision of Policy FAA, including draft regulatory language are available from the MCPS Public Information Office by calling 301-279-3391 or on the Montgomery County Public Schools Web site at www.montgomeryschoolsmd.org. Click on "Board of Education" on the left side and then on "Board Policies." Written comments should be sent to the Office of the Superintendent of Schools, 850 Hungerford Drive, Rockville, Maryland 20850 or e-mail to boe@fc.k12.mcps.md.us.