County Council Committees to Receive Briefings on Police Statistical Data, White’s Ferry, and the Wheaton Downtown Study on Monday, October 16

The members of the PS Committee include Chair Sidney Katz and Councilmembers Dawn Luedtke and Kristin Mink.

The Transportation and Environment (TE) Committee will meet at 9:30 a.m. to discuss Montgomery County’s three Parking Lot Districts and Executive Regulation 13-23, Residential Permit Parking Guidelines. In addition, the committee will receive a briefing on the closure of White’s Ferry.

The members of the TE Committee include Chair Evan Glass and Councilmembers Marilyn Balcombe and Kate Stewart.

The Planning, Housing and Parks (PHP) Committee will meet at 1:30 p.m. to review the Fairland and Briggs Chaney Master Plan and receive a briefing on the Wheaton Downtown Study from Planning Department representatives.

The members of the PHP Committee include Chair Andrew Friedson and Councilmembers Natali Fani-González and Will Jawando.

More detail on each agenda item is provided below.

Bill 45-20, Police Statistical Data for 2022

Review: The PS Committee will receive a briefing from MCPD representatives about police statistical data, as required by Bill 45-20, Police – Community Policing – Data. The legislation, which was enacted in 2021, requires MCPD to make certain reports and post certain datasets on Data Montgomery related to police-community interactions. The legislation expanded upon Bill 33-19, Police – Community Policing, which was enacted in 2020 and requires MCPD to provide an annual data report to the Council by Feb. 1 of each year.

Parking Lot Districts

Review: The TE Committee will review the Parking Lot Districts in Bethesda, Silver Spring and Wheaton with representatives from the Montgomery County Department of Transportation (MCDOT). The discussion will include an overview of how the districts are funded, their current budgets and any challenges.

Historically, each district has been funded with revenue from its ad valorem property tax, parking fees, parking fines and miscellaneous income, including the sale of land from underutilized parking lots. The original mission of these enterprise funds was to maintain, operate, construct and rehabilitate parking lots and garages. By sharing parking costs among many buildings, Parking Lot Districts allowed these areas to develop without having to consume additional space for parking lots.

Executive Regulation 13-23, Residential Permit Parking Guidelines

Review: The TE Committee will review Executive Regulation 13-23, which amends MCDOT’s guidelines for the Residential Permit Parking program. These amendments introduce new language to broaden the factors that MCDOT may consider when installing permit parking on a block face not exclusively for residential use. MCDOT is pursuing these amendments to address the impacts experienced in some Montgomery County communities by new development and construction activity near transit centers.

The proposed language would enable MCDOT to waive the hearing fee for requestors who are unable to pay the fee. In addition, a new subsection adds language exclusive to the Quebec Terrace area in Silver Spring that limits each residential address to one permit, irrespective of the number of vehicles registered to that address.

White’s Ferry Closure

Briefing: The TE Committee will receive a briefing on the status of efforts to reinstate White’s Ferry, which ceased operations on Dec. 28, 2020 following a Circuit Court opinion in a private lawsuit over the use of private land for the ferry landing in Virginia. Prior to closing, White’s Ferry transported approximately 600 to 800 vehicles per day across the Potomac River and connected bicyclists and pedestrians between Loudoun County north of Leesburg and Montgomery County west of Poolesville. A study of White’s Ferry’s operations is available on the MCDOT website, which examines the long-term feasibility and reliability of Potomac River ferry service between the two counties. Landowners from both the Maryland and Virginia sides will be in attendance for the meeting.

Fairland and Briggs Chaney Master Plan

Review: The PHP Committee will review the Fairland and Briggs Chaney Master Plan. The plan is an update to a portion of the 1997 Fairland Master Plan and would establish a clear vision for an equitable, just and prosperous future for the Fairland community, mirroring the County’s long-term priorities, which includes a vibrant economy, equity for all residents and a healthy environment.

The master plan boundary consists primarily of property and neighborhoods of Fairland and Briggs Chaney along the U.S. 29 Corridor near Paint Branch on the south and toward Greencastle Road on the north. The update will examine and provide policies and recommendations on existing and future land uses and zoning, housing inventory and needs, transportation systems, historic preservation opportunities, area park facilities and the environment.

Wheaton Downtown Study by the Planning Department

Briefing: The PHP Committee will receive a briefing on the Wheaton Downtown Study, which seeks to advance implementation of the 2012 Wheaton Central Business District and Vicinity Sector Plan. The study explores how to further Wheaton’s economic diversity by strategically leveraging new investment and economic benefits created by large-scale redevelopment, while fostering the successful and entrepreneurial nature of the existing small property owners and businesses in the plan area.

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