Spring 2004

Parkwood Resident's Association

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The next PRA meeting will be held on Monday, March 22 at 7:30 pm in the All- Purpose room at KP Elementary School. Please contact Liz Brennan or Jan Rothman if you have topics for the agenda.

March 22nd Meeting Agenda Items

Mark your calendar to attend the first PRA meeting for this year. We will have a short presentation from the MCPS Department of Construction with an overview of the anticipated construction schedule for the Parkwood Elementary School modernization It is expected that the funding for the modernization will be approved this Spring. Construction will begin in mid June.

2004-2006 Slate of PRA Officers: Attend the March meeting to participate in election of PRA officers.

President - Liz Brennan: as President of Parkwood for the past two years, Liz has focused primarily on issues that impact the quality of life for Parkwood residents including traffic and development. She has encouraged neighbors to get out and vote as elected officials pay close attention to areas that have high voter turnout. In the fall of 2002 the Parkwood voting precinct had almost a 70 percent voter turnout. Liz and her husband Tim have lived in Parkwood for 18 years and have 3 children Matthew, David and Meghan.

Vice President - Maryann Dillon: Along with her husband Ed Meyer and daughter Toma, Maryann recently moved to Parkwood from North Kensington, where she was very active in the Rock Creek Palisades Citizens Association serving as Co-Chair of the Beautification Committee.

Secretary - Position available: Volunteer needed to take minutes at the quarterly meetings. This is an opportunity to get involved, meet neighbors and help our community.

Treasurer - Chris St. Clair: As PRA Treasurer for the past two years. Chris has done an incredible job automating the PRA accounting and setting-up the computerized membership system too. Chris and husband Tom have lived in Parkwood for 10 years and have 2 daughters: Katie & Jenny.

Have a New Neighbor? The PRA is looking for ways to reach-out to newcomers in the neighborhood. A PRA welcome packet has been developed and Block Captain Chair Kathy Byars and some of her volunteers have been passing our packets out. If you would like to welcome a new neighbor or have Kathy or one of her volunteers drop off a packet, please contact her at 240-372-9708 or byarsagent@mris.com.

Parkwood to Address Pedestrian Safety Issue There are several safety problems along the one sidewalk connecting Parkwood to the Grosvenor Metro. The stretch running along Beach Drive from Franklin is well lit and this year the sidewalk was even plowed. However, along Rockville Pike between Beech and Tuckerman there is no lighting, the sidewalk wasn’t plowed, and the guardrail protecting pedestrians and cyclists is incomplete. Parkwood activist Pete Galvin has contacted local authorities about each of these 3 issues and is awaiting responses. If you know something that may be helpful, please contact Pete at 301-493-4312 or at pd.galvin@verizon.net.

Parkwood Crime Report: In January it was reported that about a dozen cars were broken into on Clearbrook Lane, additionally a resident on Clearbrook Court reported an attempted break-in. Neighbors are encouraged to keep their houses and cars locked. Contact Denise Gill 301-657-0962, Community Police Officer to report a crime or disturbance.

Web Crime Updates: Bethesda District updates and alerts, go to www.montgomerycountymd.gov/content/POL/ask/bethesda/crimeupdates.asp

Wheaton District go to www.montgomerycountymd.gov/content/POL/ask/wheaton/crimealert.asp

For the entire County, by police district (Bethesda is #2 and Wheaton is #4), go to www.montgomerycountymd.gov/content/POL/ask/districStations.asp
[Webmaster note: it really is distric, not district]
[Webmaster note: this link and many others are available on the Links page of this website.]

Garden Committee News Garden Committee Chairs Jean Wirshing and Claire Murphy have been diligently working with a small group of neighbors to keep the Saul/Cedar island park maintained. For the past two years the PRA has been able to hire a local landscaper to mulch and prune the area in the fall and spring. Committee members have been planting flowers and providing general maintenance throughout the year. The next focus will be on rehabilitating the islands on Wildwood including removing debris, raking and seeding. The committee chairs are looking for a group of neighbors that is willing to “adopt” this project. Please contact Jean (301-493-8667) if you are able to donate time or funds for the next important step toward Parkwood beautification.

Parkwood Elementary School Urges Early Registration for Fall 2004
To ensure there is adequate staffing for next fall, the Kensington Parkwood Elementary School is encouraging any prospective families to register their children as soon as possible. If you have any questions about the school or its programs you can either contact PTA President Susan Workman 301-770-1088 or Principal John Cechini at 301-571-6949.

Interested in staying abreast of news at North Bethesda Middle School or Walter Johnson High School? Check out their websites for current activities, issues and accomplishments. North Bethesda Middle School: http://www2.mcps.k12.md.us/schools/northbethesdams/ and Walter Johnson High School: http://www2.mcps.k12.md.us/schools/wjhs/

Proposed 2004 Budget: The budget below is based on last year’s expenses, increased by 5%, plus a significant increase in meeting space rental fees. PRA members will vote on this budget at the March 22nd meeting.

Description Proposed
Amounts:
Admin (includes cost of 3 PRA announcement signs) $325.00
Newsletter (4 newsletters, 2 mailed and 2 delivered by Block Captains $1336.00
Gardening $275.00
Meeting Space $100.00
Social Event (new category for 2004) $150.00
Total $2186.00

Coalition of Kensington Communities Update The Coalition of Kensington Communities (CKC) testified in January in front of the County Council against additional public funding for the Strathmore Concert Hall and urged the Council to tap into private funding to complete the project. The 100,000 million dollar concert hall on Rockville Pike is being built entirely with state and county tax money. The funding for the project was approved in 2001 by the Montgomery County Council with the stipulation that no additional public money was to be used for the capital project. In early February, the County Council voted to provide Strathmore with a 10 year, no interest loan of 6.6 million dollars to complete the project. The concert hall is scheduled to open on the Spring of 2005.

The CKC has developed a list of Kensington area traffic “hot spots” and is formulating plans to aggressively lobby state and county elected officials and staff at Park and Planning get these traffic problems addressed. The list of trouble locations include the intersections of Connecticut/Knowles, Connecticut/Plyers Mill and Knowles/Summit. The CKC has also voted to support the Montgomery County Public Schools Capital Improvement Plan budget.

The CKC is a unified body of 10 area civic associations founded to enhance the quality of life in the Kensington area. Towards this end the group works with local government to address issues of urban design, recreation, transportation, pedestrian accessibility and economic growth affecting greater Kensington. Participation is open to any civic group or governing body in the Kensington area that shares the commitment to improving the welfare of the community.

Neighbors Share Information via the PRA List Serve
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Parkwood residents have been sharing information about handymen, general contractors, Internet Access (DSL vs. Cable), area physicians and more. The PRA listserve is the best way to stay connected to your neighbors 24/7. Sign on and join the discussions. The e-mail group is open to all residents of the Parkwood subdivision who have an e-mail address. To subscribe to the e-mail group, send a blank message to: parkwoodresidents-subscribe@yahoogroups.com. You will receive a confirmation message when you are subscribed. Do not write anything in the subject or body of the message. It will not be seen by anyone and you will not get a response. This communication mode can save the PRA funds if we can encourage all to participate! Subscribe to the list serve and get your neighbor to as well!

Property Tax Bill - Check the Math: We have learned through our neighbor resident association Kensington Heights (KH) that some of the arithmetic calculations on the property tax bill are done by . . . HAND! One KH property owner caught a significant arithmetic error, brought that error to the attention of the appropriate County office, and had her property tax reduced accordingly. So, be sure to check your property tax bill each year!

Report Those Potholes: To report a pothole on a State-maintained road (Cedar Lane, Knowles Ave, Connecticut Ave.), call 301-513-7300.  To report a pothole on a County-maintained road (all other roads), call 240-777-7623 or go to: http://www.montgomerycountymd.gov/apps/dpwt/operations/addlog_pothole.cfm?problem=Pothole

What is new on the Web?

Planning Board Live On The Web! When the Montgomery County Planning Board is meeting, you can now hear their decisions live on the Internet. Log on to www.mcparkandplanning.org and check out What's New, Planning Board Live. For more information, call the Community Relations Office, 301-495-4600.

Town Of Kensington "Town Journal" is available for your reading pleasure at www.tok.org/tokjournal.html The Town's general web site is www.tok.org

Wheaton Community Website Up & Running! For updates on the Wheaton redevelopment go to www.wheatonmd.org

County Offers Residents Free Radon Test Kits The Montgomery County Department of Environmental Protection's Indoor Air Quality Program will provide one free home radon test kit to each eligible resident. More than 30 percent of households in Montgomery County have radon levels that exceed recommendation limits set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Radon is a naturally occurring invisible, cancer-causing radioactive gas given off by uranium in rocks and soils. Radon is the second highest cause of lung cancer in the United States. To learn more about radon call (240) 777-7770 for a free radon test kit. Limit of one test kit per address.


***TIME TO RENEW YOUR 2004 Membership***

Renewal/New Member Application – Annual Dues per household: $10
Please mail or deliver your 2004 PRA membership renewal dues to: Kitty Stone, 4313 Clearbrook Lane, Kensington, MD 20895. Or bring your renewal to the March meeting. Please make check payable to: “Parkwood Residents Association”. Print your information below:

Name:_______________________________________________________________________________

Address:_____________________________________________ City:___________________Zip:_______

Phone Numbers:(daytime)___________________________evening________________________________

Email:_______________________________________________________________________________

Parkwood Resident's Association Officers: President: Liz Brennan, (301) 530-3615, brennanhouse@verizon.net
Vice President: Jan Rothman, janr@erols.com, Secretary: Debbie Zwick, drzwick@comcast.net
Treasurer: Chris St. Clair, (301) 897-8415, stclairs@speakeasy.net
PRA Website Address: http://www.parkwoodresidents.org, Webmaster: Peter Mansbach, (301) 493-8809, pmansbach@aol.com