Parkwood Residents Association
Member Meeting
September 16, 2008

MINUTES

Attending:
       Officers:    Bailey Condrey, President
Julie Tierney, Vice President
Maryann Dillon, Secretary
Gerald Sharp, Treasurer
Directors: Kitty Stone, Chair, Membership
Gail Condrey, Chair, Beautification
Kira Lueders, Chair, Block Captains
Kathy Byars, Chair, Welcoming Committee
Members: Approximately 20 other PRA Members
Guest: Jeff Waldstreicher, Maryland House of Delegates

1. Call to Order: The meeting was called to order by President Bailey Condrey at 7:35 PM.

2. Old Business: A motion was made and seconded to approve the minutes from the March and June, 2008 meetings. Motion carried.

3. Safety: Bailey reported that he spoke with Denise Gill, Montgomery County Community Liaison, regarding recent car break-ins. Ms. Gill reported that 25 cars were vandalized in one night in Chevy Chase, and every car had been unlocked. Bailey reminded the membership that car theft and vandalism is a crime of opportunity, that neighbors should look out for one another and remind each other to lock doors. The Community Liaison hotline phone number is no longer staffed. Bailey will post Ms. Gill’s phone number, (301) 657-0962, on the PRA website. [webmaster’s note: this number has been posted there for years, under ‘Links’.] Ms. Gill encouraged reporting every incident, no matter how seemingly insignificant. Other members suggested turning on house exterior lights to augment street lights and to install moveable solar lamp lights which have improved in quality in recent years.

4. Coalition of Military Medical Center Neighbors (CMMCN): Bailey reported that this coalition of citizens groups, including PRA, which surround the Naval Hospital, have been trying to work with State Highway Administration (SHA), Maryland Department of Transportation (MDOT), and Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) regarding the merger of Walter Reed Medical Center onto the NMC campus, but feel locked out from information. There is a BRAC meeting tonight and CMMCN will press for info re: roadway improvements. The $45 million dedicated to road improvements has been cut by the State to $30 million. The NMC expansion will result in 1 million more visitors annually. Five major roads (Cedar Lane, Jones Bridge, Wilson Lane, Wisconsin, Old Georgetown) have already failed a congestion test. CMMCN wants SHA and MDOT to share options for road improvements so we can give feedback. On September 15, CMMCN issued a press release announcing that SHA and MDOT have been stonewalling neighborhood groups and asking MDOT and SHA to share options and timelines. A member noted that the State Highway Fund is depleted, and that PRA officers should start discussions with State leaders including Secretary of Transportation Porcari, and go beyond the staff level. Bailey noted that CMMCN has a meeting with State legislators on October 14. Jeff Waldstreicher, State Delegate, stated that he and Senator Madaleno are the State delegation's representatives on BRAC, and that delegates are running into similar roadblocks. Governor says Porcari has authority to make decisions re: roadwork.

5. Treasurer's Report: Gerald Sharp reported the following cash balances and expenses for calendar 2008 to date:

CASH ON HAND: EXPENSES:
Cash:
Savings:
Checking:
ING Account
TOTAL CASH:
$
$
$
$
$
123
967
319
4,100
5,509
Newsletter
Beautification
Admin
TOTAL:
$
$
$
$
987
836
60
1,883

Gerald reported that PRA has a greater number of members than inprior years, with 40% donating to Beautification with an average contribution of $14.

6. Beautification: Gail Condrey reported that PRA has about $3,000 available from contributions to the Beautification Fund. She noted the report on Beautification in the newsletter. The Saul and Wildwood island planting is complete and now in maintenance mode. She recognized Kira Lueders, Topsy, Clare and Bailey for their help during "Wednesdays at Wildwood". Gail shared with members some ideas for other beautification projects:

Gail encouraged members to submit ideas for projects they may want to take on. She also asked for volunteers to organize a community event on Wildwood. There was no interest expressed.

7. Sidewalk Proposals:
Bailey noted that a proposal to install sidewalks on Parkwood Drive between Franklin and Cedar, which has not been reviewed, discussed or endorsed by PRA, is moving forward. Next step is neighbors along this stretch of Parkwood will be contacted by Montgomery County to indicate whether they support the sidewalk installation. All questions regarding the Parkwood Drive sidewalks proposal should be directed to Jan Melvin at 240-777-7271 or at jan.melvin@montgomerycountymd.gov. Once the County has collected feedback from affected neighbors along Parkwood, the County will hold a public hearing at which any resident of Parkwood can testify. It was noted that support from the local neighborhood association, which has not been requested in this case, is a strong factor in the County's consideration of the proposal. Several members expressed concerns about the potential loss of mature trees. One member noted that the County will work with residents to move sidewalks so they minimize impact on trees when possible.

Peter Mansbach had proposed a sidewalk along Franklin between Edgefield and Beach Drive given the high volume of pedestrian traffic. This proposal was formally endorsed by PRA at its January, 2008 meeting. Peter submitted his application with the PRA letter of support and has followed up with Department of Public Works (DPW) several times. It appears there was confusion between this proposal and the Parkwood Drive proposal. DPW has stated that it needs permission from Maryland National Capital Park & Planning Commission which controls the land within Rock Creek Park. There was a motion made (seconded) to ask Bailey to call and write to Councilmember Valerie Ervin on PRA letterhead to reiterate PRA's support of this proposal. Motion carried. Bailey noted that he contacted four residents whose homes face along the proposed sidewalk, and that they're split both for and against the sidewalk.

8. New Business:
The County repaired water mains in the neighborhood, resulting in several sinkholes at temporary sidewalks. Bailey will send an email to the listserv asking for locations of all sinkholes to send to County. He also will ask to move stop sign at Parkwood and Saul because it is blocked by mature trees. Carol Placek stated that there is stagnant water on Westbrook entrance to Park, and that she has asked County to install riprap, but the land is partly controlled by Maryland National Capital Park & Planning Commission. Jeff Waldstreicher suggested copying Valerie Ervin on any request so that it gets more attention. A motion was made (seconded) to have Bailey send a letter to the County stating that there are health and safety issues re: stagnant water at certain locations not being addressed. Motion passed.

John Low distributed HR 1078, a Sense of the House Resolution in which organizations have signed onto a letter supporting funding for a "21st Century Marshall Plan" to address global problems such as poverty. He asked to take this up for a vote at the next PRA meeting. A motion was made (seconded) that the Resolution be placed on the listserv for residents to read before the next PRA meeting, and to take a vote at that meeting. Motion carried.

A member inquired about orange dots painted onto street trees in Parkwood. Kira Lueders responded that, as PRA President last year, she collected lists of street trees from PRA members that needed trimming. County followed up and marked in orange any diseased trees that needed to be removed. Kira surveyed the marked trees and agreed with the need to cut them down. She suggested if you see an orange marked tree that appears healthy, contact Bret Linkletter from the County. Kira will list his contact info on listserv and PRA website. [webmaster’s note: his number has been posted there for some time, under ‘Links’.]

There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 9 PM.

Respectfully submitted,

Maryann Dillon
Secretary


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