Montgomery County Council Meets on Dec. 13 at 9:15 a.m. to Receive an Update on the County’s Fiscal Condition

by Patrick Herron

Fiscal Plan

Briefing: The Council will receive an update from Executive staff about the County’s fiscal plan. The fiscal plan provides a high-level overview of the County’s fiscal condition and position based on current revenue and expenditure assumptions. The December 2022 update includes revisions to the County’s revenues based on actual collections to-date, assumed additional revenue that will be received in the coming months, and estimated annual expenditures based on quarter one spending for the County government.

Overall, the County’s fiscal position in FY22 was better than expected due to actual FY22 tax revenues exceeding projections. Total tax revenues in FY22 were $291.8 million greater than budgeted. This allowed the County to end with general fund reserve levels greater than the 10 percent policy level.

Public Hearings

 

The Council will hold the following public hearing at 9:30 a.m. Residents can visit the Council website to learn about the multiple ways to provide testimony.

Expedited Bill 32-22, Department of Health and Human Services – Structure and Positions

Public hearing: The Council will hold a public hearing on Expedited Bill 32-22, Department of Health and Human Services – Structure and Positions, which would divide the position of County Health Officer and Chief of Public Health into two separate positions within the County. Currently this is a single position within the County. The lead sponsor is then-Council President Gabe Albornoz, at the request of the County Executive.

 

District Council Session

 

Zoning Text Amendment (ZTA) 22-11, Technical Corrections

Introduction: The Council will introduce Zoning Text Amendment (ZTA) 22-11, Technical Corrections, which would change the voting requirements for map amendments and zoning text amendments and make other technical corrections to the Zoning Ordinance, due to the increase from nine to 11 Councilmembers. The lead sponsor is Council Vice President Andrew Friedson. A public hearing will be held on Jan. 17, 2023.

Zoning Text Amendment (ZTA) 22-12, Overlay Zones -Clarksburg East and West Environmental Overlay – Exemptions

Introduction: The Council will introduce ZTA 22-12, Overlay Zones -Clarksburg East and West Environmental Overlay – Exemptions, which would clarify that any master-planned bikeway located in the Clarksburg East or West Environmental Overlay Zone is exempt from the impervious surface restrictions. The lead sponsor is Council President Evan Glass, at the request of the Planning Board. A public hearing is scheduled for Jan. 17, 2023.

 

Legislative Session

 

Expedited Bill 34-22, Streets and Roads – Classification of Roads

Vote expected: The Council is expected to vote on Expedited Bill 34-22, Streets and Roads – Classification of Roads, which is a corrective bill that would correct mistakes in the recently enacted “complete streets” legislation, Bill 24-22, which addressed road design and construction under Chapter 49. The lead sponsor is then-Council President Albornoz, at the request of Council staff and Planning Department staff.

Appointment of Board of Appeals

Vote expected: The Council is expected to vote to fill two vacant positions on the County Board of Appeals. The Council interviewed four candidates on Tuesday, Dec. 6. One position is to fill a partial term, which is scheduled to expire in September 2023, due to Mr. Roberto Pinero’s resignation and appointment as a temporary acting Montgomery County Planning Board member. This position can be filled by a Democrat.

The second position is vacant due to the end of the term for Mr. Richard Melnick. This vacancy is for a full term of four years and can be filled by a Republican, a resident affiliated with another recognized political party or an unaffiliated resident. This position cannot be filled by a Democrat. Mr. Melnick is reapplying for this position.

The current members of the board include Chair John Pentecost (Democrat), Richard Melnick (Unaffiliated), and Caryn Hines (Democrat). Members of County boards, committees and commissions may not serve on more than one such group at a time.

Duties of the Board of Appeals include hearing and deciding requests for variances from development standards contained in the Montgomery County Zoning Ordinance; hearing appeals from certain administrative decisions rendered by County government agencies; and hearing oral arguments on and deciding appeals from decisions of the Hearing Examiner on conditional uses. The board also considers and decides requests for modifications of special exceptions.

 

Consent Calendar

 

Each item on the Council’s Consent Calendar can be found on the Council agenda for Tuesday, Dec. 13, which is available on the Council website.

The Council meeting schedule may change from time to time. The current Council and Committee agendas, Council staff reports and additional information on items scheduled for Council review can be viewed at: http://www.montgomerycountymd.gov/COUNCIL/ondemand/index.html.

The Council recommends that residents, who choose to attend in-person Council meetings, get fully vaccinated to protect themselves and others against COVID-19. If this is not possible, virtual participation is encouraged.

Council and committee meetings are streamed live on the Council’s web page via YouTube and on Facebook Live and can be watched on County Cable Montgomery on Xfinity/RCN 6 HD 996/1056, Fios 30, and on the CCM live stream.

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