Storm Updates: Schools and Offices Open, Early Voting to Resume

Downed tree at Rhode Island Ave. and Paducah Street

Here is the latest update from the City: PEPCO is working in the City to restore power. The blocked roads previously mentioned (Metzerott @ St. Andrews, and 51st @ Cherokee) are open. Power was restored to College Park Woods. Pepco is saying power at the 90 Percent of its entire customers to be Restored by 8 a.m. today; the power at remaining Customers to be restored by late this evening.

City crews have been cleaning up debris throughout the City and all roads are open. The City’s Emergency Operations Center closed at 4:00 p.m. yesterday. If anyone needs to get a message to Public Works, they may send an e-mail to publicworks@collegeparkmd.gov or leave a message at 240-487-3590.

A work order has been issued to clear the fallen tree at Rhode Island and Paducah Street in Sunnyside area. It should be removed soon.

Normal City operations will resume today morning at all buildings. Prince George’s County Public schools and the University of Maryland will open today on a normal schedule.

Early Voting, which was cancelled yesterday and today, will resume tomorrow at the College Park Community Center. The polling hours will be 8:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m. Wednesday – Friday this week. Early voting has been extended through Friday to make up for the lost time at the polls.

Storm Update: Street Conditions, Power Outages, Closings..

Downed Tree at 51st Avenue (near Cherokee)

Just finished driving around the neighborhood (in District 1)

Pepco crews are still working at Mineola / 52nd Avenue to restore power there. The entrance to Mineola from 52nd Pl. has been blocked. I saw a tree on 51st Avenue (near Cherokee) blocking the street. (picture below). In terms of power outages, there are four spots in east Hollywood and one near Daniel Park / Branchville area. You can check the outage map here on Pepco’s website: http://www.pepco.com/home/emergency/maps/stormcenter/

Sunnyside looks pretty clean, except one downed tree at the corner of Rhode Island and Paducah (no street blocking).

Other than dead branches and debris on the streets, they look fairly clean and open. I saw Public Works trucks cleaning up those debris.

Again a reminder, today’s trash and recycles will be collected Thursday. Wednesday’s trash and recycles will be collected Friday.

It looks like the worst is behind us. That said, City’s Emergency Operations Center will continue to operate today, please call 240-487-3590 if you see any issues that need to be addressed (blocked streets, clogged stormwater drains, or downed trees).

Good News. Metro will restore bus and rail service Tuesday afternoon with Sunday-level service on most lines, and expects to resume normal service levels (i.e. rush hour service) for Wednesday morning’s commute. More here.

MARC trains services are still suspended. Federal offices, Prince George’s schools and UMd will remain closed today. Routine City operations will also be suspended again today and City buildings will remain closed.

Stay safe and drive safe. Please let me know if you have any questions.

Trash Collection This Week, Emergency Operations Center, Leaves Raking


The Department of Public Works plans to pick up the Monday trash/recycle route on Monday morning. They will make a decision later tomorrow about Tuesday’s trash/recycling. We will keep you posted as we hear a change in schedule. You can also call Public Works later tomorrow at (240) 487 – 3590 to know the latest.

In order to help inform you about the latest storm updates, the City will activate the Emergency Operations Center (EOC) tomorrow morning at 5:00 am. The Center has a backup generator there and thus the center will operate even during power outages. The latest about the storm will also be posted on City’s website ( http://www.collegeparkmd.gov/ ) . You can also tune in Comcast channel 71 or FiOS channel 25 to find the latest information.

Off course, you can always call me anytime to find the latest. Please feel free to do so. My number is 301-659-6295

Also, the Department of Public Works is asking residents not to rake leaves and pile them by side streets, as the storm will most likely blow them away. We’re told that there is no way that the City will be able to remove leaves that residents put into the street unauthorized.

Please let me know if you have any questions. Thank you.

Office, School, UMd and Metro Closed Today

Please note the following closings today, Monday, October 29, 2012
Please let me know if you have further questions.

NCP Crime Stats: Oct 21 – 26, 2012

Date of Incident Time of Incident Incident Type Location
10/20/2012 1626 THEFT FROM AUTO 9200 Blk ST ANDREWS PL
10/20/2012 1916 ASSAULT 9400 Blk LIMESTONE PL
10/24/2012 1534 THEFT FROM AUTO 9300 Blk BALTIMORE AVE
10/26/2012 1418 ROBBERY, RESIDENTIAL 9100 Blk BALTIMORE AVE

Hurricane safety tips: Learn what to do before, during and after a hurricane.

Hurricane safety tips: Learn what to do before, during and after a hurricane.

To prepare for a hurricane, you should take the following measures:

To begin preparing, you should build an emergency kit and make a family communications plan.

  • Know your surroundings.
  • Learn the elevation level of your property and whether the land is flood-prone. This will help you know how your property will be affected when storm surge or tidal flooding are forecasted.
  • Learn community hurricane evacuation routes and how to find higher ground. Determine where you would go and how you would get there if you needed to evacuate.
  • Make plans to secure your property:
  • Cover all of your home’s windows. Permanent storm shutters offer the best protection for windows. A second option is to board up windows with 5/8” marine plywood, cut to fit and ready to install. Tape does not prevent windows from breaking.
  • Install straps or additional clips to securely fasten your roof to the frame structure. This will reduce roof damage.
  • Be sure trees and shrubs around your home are well trimmed so they are more wind resistant.
  • Clear loose and clogged rain gutters and downspouts.
  • Reinforce your garage doors; if wind enters a garage it can cause dangerous and expensive structural damage.
  • Plan to bring in all outdoor furniture, decorations, garbage cans and anything else that is not tied down.
  • Install a generator for emergencies.

During a Hurricane
If a hurricane is likely in your area, you should:

  • Listen to the radio or TV for information.
  • Secure your home, close storm shutters and secure outdoor objects or bring them indoors.
  • Turn off utilities if instructed to do so. Otherwise, turn the refrigerator thermostat to its coldest setting and keep its doors closed.
  • Turn off propane tanks
  • Avoid using the phone, except for serious emergencies.
  • Moor your boat if time permits.
  • Ensure a supply of water for sanitary purpose such as cleaning and flushing toilets. Fill the bathtub and other larger containers with water.
  • Find out how to keep food safe during and after and emergency.
  • You should evacuate under the following conditions:
  • If you are directed by local authorities to do so. Be sure to follow their instructions.
  • If you live in a mobile home or temporary structure – such shelter are particularly hazardous during hurricane no matter how well fastened to the ground.
  • If you live in a high-rise building – hurricane winds are stronger at higher elevations.
  • If you live on the coast, on a floodplain, near a river, or on an island waterway.
  • Read more about evacuating yourself and your family. If you are unable to evacuate, go to your wind-safe room. If you do not have one, follow these guidelines:
  • Stay indoors during the hurricane and away from windows and glass doors.
  • Close all interior doors – secure and brace external doors.
  • Keep curtains and blinds closed. Do not be fooled if there is a lull; it could be the eye of the storm – winds will pick up again.
  • Take refuge in a small interior room, closet or hallway on the lowest level.
  • Lie on the floor under a table or another sturdy object.
  • Avoid elevators.

After a Hurricane

  • Continue listening to a NOAA Weather Radio or the local news for the latest updates.
  • Stay alert for extended rainfall and subsequent flooding even after the hurricane or tropical storm has ended.
  • If you have become separated from your family, use your family communications plan or contact FEMA or the American Red Cross.
  • FEMA has established the National Emergency Family Registry and Locator System (NEFRLS), which has been developed to help reunite families who are separated during a disaster. The NEFRLS system will enable displaced individuals the ability to enter personal information into a website database so that they can be located by others during a disaster.
  • The American Red Cross also maintains a database to help you find family. Contact the local American Red Cross chapter where you are staying for information. Do not contact the chapter in the disaster area.
  • If you evacuated, return home only when officials say it is safe.
  • If you cannot return home and have immediate housing needs. Text SHELTER + your ZIP code to 43362 (4FEMA) to find the nearest shelter in your area (example: shelter 12345).
  • For those who have longer-term housing needs, FEMA offers several types of assistance, including services and grants to help people repair their homes and find replacement housing. Apply for assistance or search for information about housing rental resources
  • Drive only if necessary and avoid flooded roads and washed¬ out bridges. Stay off the streets. If you must go out watch for fallen objects; downed electrical wires; and weakened walls, bridges, roads, and sidewalks.
  • Keep away from loose or dangling power lines and report them immediately to the power company.
  • Walk carefully around the outside your home and check for loose power lines, gas leaks and structural damage before entering.
  • Stay out of any building if you smell gas, floodwaters remain around the building or your home was damaged by fire and the authorities have not declared it safe.
  • Inspect your home for damage. Take pictures of damage, both of the building and its contents, for insurance purposes. If you have any doubts about safety, have your residence inspected by a qualified building inspector or structural engineer before entering.
  • Use battery-powered flashlights in the dark. Do NOT use candles. Note: The flashlight should be turned on outside before entering – the battery may produce a spark that could ignite leaking gas, if present.
  • Watch your pets closely and keep them under your direct control. Watch out for wild animals, especially poisonous snakes. Use a stick to poke through debris.
  • Avoid drinking or preparing food with tap water until you are sure it’s not contaminated.
  • Check refrigerated food for spoilage. If in doubt, throw it out.
  • Wear protective clothing and be cautious when cleaning up to avoid injury.
  • Use the telephone only for emergency calls.
  • NEVER use a generator inside homes, garages, crawlspaces, sheds, or similar areas, even when using fans or opening doors and windows for ventilation. Deadly levels of carbon monoxide can quickly build up in these areas and can linger for hours, even after the generator has shut off.

It’s Today: College Park Day, 2012

College Park Day 2010

One more reminder, Today is College Park Day, 2012. Here are a top  top reasons to attend today’s event

A GREAT AFTERNOON! Over 60 Community & Business Organizations!  Come see all the cool things they have to offer!

Bill’s Backyard BBQ, Carmen and Salvador’s Fiesta Foods, Curbside Cupcakes and other vendors will be dishing out great lunchtime options!  Come HUNGRY!

FIRETRUCKS, MOUNTED POLICE, and BOMB SQUAD!  Plus a robot!  Need we say more?

KIDS FUN ZONE! Giant inflatable castle and obstacle course, face painting, tattoo’s and other fun games!

BE PHILANTHROPIC!  Make a get well card for sick kids, bring some canned goods for the hungry, see how you can help the organizations who help others!

FREE TENNIS INSTRUCTIONS!  Courtesy of the Tennis Center at College Park, one of this year’s sponsors!

GREAT MOMENTS!  Winners of the elementary school poster contest will be announced at 2pm!  There will be a Grand Prize scholarship account sponsored by Capital One Bank.  Come see the great posters that all the kids have made!

[Courtesy of Council member Wojahn]

Pepco to Discuss Tree Works on November 7 Worksession

Pecpo

Due to continued concerns from residents about Pepco’s recent tree pruning work in the city, we have asked Pepco’s Maryland VP to appear at our November 7 worksession and discuss those concerns further.

We’re in particular concerned about their tree pruning policies and communication of these works with affected residents. We are hearing from quite a few residents that they did not receive notifications before the pruning work was completed.

If you have been affected by any of Pepco’s recent tree pruning work, please let me know. We’d like to bring those concerns to Pepco at the November 7 Council worksession. Thank you.

Alsobrooks to Demonstrate 3-1-1 Call Service

3-1-1 ribbon cutting ceremony

Angela Alsobrooks, the Prince George’s County State’s Attorney, is hosting an event today morning at 8:30 am to demonstrate the County’s new “3-1-1″ system, as well as crime and public safety issues in our county.

Early this month, Prince George’s County launched a 3-1-1 system. The system will help our residents to get county services more efficiently. The CountyClick 3-1-1 Call Center has 26 representatives to assist callers and is managed by Jennifer Hawkins. In the coming weeks, Spanish-speaking representatives will be added to complement the current staff. The call center’s hours of operation are from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Monday – Friday. Citizens and residents can also access CountyClick by going to countyclick311.com or download the app to any Apple or Android mobile device.

The CountyClick 3-1-1 Call Center is housed in a newly renovated office, occupying a 5,000 square-foot space on the lower level of the County Administration Building. The Call Center has the latest technology via the Avaya Automated Call Distribution System. All contacts (calls, emails, written correspondence and walk-ins) will be logged into a newly developed customer relationship management service.

Staff from County Executive Rushern Baker’s office will join to demonstrate the new system and talk about its benefits.

Also, there will be discussion the latest issues in criminal justice and what’s happening in public safety in Prince George’s County.

The demonstration will take place the Upper Marlboro Courthouse in room M-0421 starting at 8:30 a.m. on Friday. The address is: 14735 Main Street in Upper Marlboro.

College Park Day – This Saturday

College Park Day 2012

College Park Day, 2012 is just around the corner. It will be on this coming Saturday from 11 am to 3 pm.

This is the one single day when city’s divers groups- residents, students, landlords, young and old, all come to one singe place to celebrate our rich history and diversity.

We’re expecting around 60 community groups and businesses there.

Mayor Fellows and UMD president Mr. Loh will be there to speak

There will be great food, kids activities, contests, games and entertainment.

To find more, please visit College Park Day website here at http://www.College ParkDay.org

Tonight’s Council Meeting: Book Exchange, Snow Truck, Tax Credit..

College Park City Hall

We will have a brief Council meeting tonight, including a presentation on the clean-up of the Low-level Radiation Burial Site at BARC. After the presentation, the Council will likely consider whether to take a position on the clean-up. Please let us know if you have comments. Also, don’t forget, College Park Day is this Saturday! We hope you have a chance to come out, it will be from 11 am-3 pm at the College Park Community Center in Lakeland. Finally, just a note, this is our last Council meeting for the month of October, since next Tuesday is the 5th Tuesday of the month.

This is our agenda for this week’s regular meeting:

1.PRESENTATION ON THE CLEAN-UP ACTIVITIES OF THE LOW-LEVEL RADIATION BURIAL SITE AT BARC. Between the 1940′s and 1980′s, the Beltsville Agricultural Research Center (BARC), utilized a site at the along Cherry Hill Road to bury low-level radioactive material, such as gloves, plastic syringes, vials, paper, animal carcasses and organic and non-organic fluids. This site was licensed by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC, formerly the Atomic Energy Commission). BARC used 46 pits, each of which was 10′x12′ and 10 feet deep. Although BARC states that the material does not have any public health impact on nearby residents, this area is now an area of concern in BARC’s Superfund National Priorities Listing issued by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. BARC has requested that the NRC grant permission for it to clean the site. A representative from BARC will be at the meeting on Tuesday night to discuss the clean-up and answer questions.

2. CONSENT AGENDA – Approval of a purchase from Johnson Truck Center of a 37,700 Gross Vehicle Weight Rating 2013 Freightliner Salt Spreader and Snow Plow in the amount of $148,482.
The Council will adopt the approval of purchase of a Freightliner Salt Spreader and Snow Plow in the amount of $148,482 for City’s Department of Public Works. Public Works currently has six medium duty size dump trucks that have V-Box spreaders and 10′ wide snow plows for winter use. Four of the six trucks have liquid de-icing tanks that allow Public Works to mix liquid with the salt for easier and faster snow removal from the streets. Public Works needs another medium size snow plow truck to add to its fleet to better help them during snow events. Earlier, Staff recommended that the City of College Park purchase from Johnson Truck Center, one 2013 Freightliner M2 1 06 chassis with a Henderson dump body, a Henderson V-Box Spreader with a pre-wet system and a Henderson 10′ snow plow in the amount of $148,482.00. This expense would be charged to the current CIP account 925061- Vehicle Replacement Program–which currently has funding in the amount of $284,466.00. A second expenditure of approximately $28,000.00 will be forthcoming for College Park’s share of the new Four Cities Street Sweeper. If the order is placed now, Public Works should be able to have both the truck and equipment built and delivered to them by mid-January 2013. If the order is placed in November, the City will have to wait until mid-March 2013 for delivery, after the snow season usually ends.

3.12-G-114 – SUPPORT OF DETAILED SITE PLAN 10028 FOR THE MARYLAND BOOK EXCHANGE PROPERTY SUBJECT TO CONDITIONS AND THE APPLICANT ENTERING INTO AN AGREEMENT WITH THE CITY. The Council has previously expressed unanimous opposition to two previous site plans that the developers of the Maryland Book Exchange mixed-use student housing and retail project presented. The project is now scheduled to go back before the District Council for review, and the developer has presented a new proposal to the Council that is significantly scaled back and includes a step-down to three stories 100 feet before Yale Ave. The developer has also made a number of architectural revisions to address other concerns that the Council raised. Although the residents of Old Town and City staff still have some concerns about the project, it is significantly improved from the earlier proposals, and the Council will consider a resolution in support of the project. The support will be subject to a number of conditions, including the developer’s adherence to a number of the requirements in the Resolution passed by the Prince George’s County Planning Board and that the developer otherwise amend the proposal to reflect the agreed-upon design. Read more »

NCP Crime Stats: Oct 13-20, 2012

Date of
Incident
Time of
Incident
Incident
Type

Location
10/14/2012 47 THEFT 9100 Blk BALTIMORE AVE
10/14/2012 133 ASSAULT 9137 Blk BALTIMORE AVE
10/14/2012 1257 THEFT 10100 Blk 52ND AVE
10/14/2012 2310 AUTO, RECOVERED CHERRY HILL RD/PARK DR
10/15/2012 928 THEFT FROM AUTO 9600 Blk BALTIMORE AVE
10/16/2012 1037 THEFT 9800 Blk RHODE ISLAND AVE
10/17/2012 1611 THEFT FROM AUTO 4900 Blk BLACKFOOT RD
10/19/2012 921 THEFT 9600 Blk AUTOVILLE DR
10/20/2012 1626 THEFT FROM AUTO 9200 Blk ST ANDREWS PL
10/20/2012 1916 ASSAULT 9400 Blk LIMESTONE PL

Fall Classes at Youth and Family Services

Fall classes at Youth and Family Center

College Park Youth Service Center, located at 4912 Nantucket Road is offering several classes for our seniors and moms with toddlers.

Seniors can meet every Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 10 am to 12 noon. On Monday, the center runs knitting, crochet from 10 am to 11am. On Mondays, they can take part in Wii Bowling from 11 to 12 noon. The program will cost $30 for 6 weeks. Classes will begin from Nov 5th.

The Center will also run programs for Spanish speaking seniors on Wednesdays from 10 am to 11am. There will be also board games from 11 to 12 noon on Wednesdays. The programs costs $30 for 6 week. Classes will begin from Nov 7th

Seniors can also join Book Club from 10 am to 11 am and “Cards Galore” from 11-12 noon on Fridays.

The Center is also offering classes for moms with toddlers on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10 am to 12 noon, Tuesday Tumbling from 10 am to 11 am and Spanish program from 11am to 12noon. On Thursdays, there will be Kinder Craft and Story Time from 10 am to 12 noon. Classes run for 4 weeks at $25 per session. The next session begins on November 8th. The next session begins November 27th – December 20th. Classes cost $25 per child—ages 5 and under.

Free Trees, First-Come, First-Served

Helping to grow..

As part of our Energy-Saving Trees Program, a partnership with the Arbor Day Foundation, Pepco is offering up to two free trees per residential customer in the Pepco region — up to a total of 2,300 trees — on a first-come, first-served basis.

Pepco’s goal is to help customers conserve energy and reduce household electricity bills through strategic planting of trees.

Program Period: Trees will be available to residential customers to November 5, 2012 on a first-come, first-served basis.

Program Goal: Conserve energy and reduce household electricity bills through strategic planting of up to two (2) free trees per residential household

Who is Eligible?: Residential customers of Pepco.

How to Reserve Trees: Pepco customers reserve trees at http://arborday.org/pepcotrees.

What is Expected of the Recipient?: Customers are expected to care for the trees and plant them in a strategic location that is provided by the online tool accessed via the website address provided above.

How Do Customers Receive the Trees?: Once the customer reserves the trees online, the Arbor Day Foundation ships the 2’-4’ trees to the customer.

Tools Available to the Customer from the Arbor Day Foundation’s Website: Using the website’s mapping tool, customers map the location of the tree planting to determine tree benefits. Once the tree is mapped, the online tool calculates the estimated benefits including energy savings, cleaner air, reduced carbon dioxide emissions and improved storm water management.

Energy-Saving Benefits of Trees: Shade trees can reduce residential cooling costs by as much as 30% if planted strategically to shade homes. In the winter, trees reduce wind speeds and infiltration of cold air into buildings thereby reducing the costs associated with heating. The trees also beautify customer homes and can add value to the property. Trees improve air quality, reduce storm water, increase carbon sequestration (capturing of carbon to reduce from atmosphere), and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

If you have questions, please contact the Arbor Day Call Center at 1-855-234-3801. Customers can also visit the Arbor Day Website noted above.

Police Arrests Suspect in Auto-theft Incidents

Prince George's Police

Thanks to our Police, who have apprehended one suspect in relation to a series of auto thefts that took place recently in our neighborhood. A video surveillance operation on Route 1 allowed the Police to make the arrest possible.

The investigative division of the Prince George’s Police has been pursuing other possible suspects related to these incidents. I will let you know as we receive more information.

The Auto-thefts have been the most common type of crime in recent weeks. For example, from October 6 to October 11, police reported a total of 12 crimes. Out of that, 8 are related to auto thefts.

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