KabirCares.org
Nov
22
2017

Holiday Burglary Tips

Nov
21
2017

City Mulls Changing Inspection Frequencies of Rental Properties in College Park

At tonight’s Council meeting, the City  Council will discuss reducing the frequency of interior inspections on some rental units in the City.

Since 1965 the City has been conducting annual interior inspections of all residential rental units and commercial properties as part of the occupancy permit process required by the City Code (Chapter 144-6-A).With the number of new properties in the City, it is difficult for code enforcement to perform the required interior inspections and also enforce exterior property maintenance throughout the City.

Staff find the most hazards and code violations in single-family home rentals. Staff’s opinion is that single-family homes, townhouses, individually owned condominium units and small apartment rental properties pose the greatest risk to health and safety.

As of April 2017, there are 1,336 permitted single-family, individually owned condominium, and townhouse residential units in the city. There are 3,875, apartment units, 1,057 hotel rooms, and 447 commercial properties with permits.Additionally, there are 15 fraternity and sorority houses and 10 rooming houses.

Staff is suggesting going to biennial inspections of the living spaces at “modern” apartment structures and hotels and continuing annual inspections of common public spaces at these locations, and annual review of their third-party inspection of sprinkler systems, fire and smoke alarms, elevators and other system maintenance items.Staff is recommending continuing annual interior inspections of single-family homes, townhouses, individually owned condominium units and small apartment rental properties.

Staff estimates that up to 450 hours could be reallocated from an interior to exterior inspections by reducing the inspection frequency of modern apartment structures and hotels.

Nov
20
2017

Council to Discuss County’s New Zoning Laws

The Council will discuss recently released M-NCPPC Comprehensive Review Draft of the proposed new Zoning Ordinance, Subdivision Regulations and Landscape Manual for public review and comment.

The M-NCPPC has requested comments be submitted by December 15, 2017, in order to be considered by staff and the consultant team prior to the presentation of a legislative draft to the County Council in early spring 2018. A countywide map amendment (zoning map) to implement the new ordinance will then follow.

The Comprehensive Review Draft represents over four years of work that included the previous release of an Evaluation and Recommendations Report and various Zoning Modules with proposed changes. Public input has been sought during the process through the M-NCPPC project website at zoningpgc.pgplanning.com. Many public meetings have been held and the City Council has provided formal comments along the way back in February last year.

Based on the public comments received, and discussions with the District Council, some initial proposals and recommendations from the consultant team have changed. Some of the key changes include:

• District Council call-up is retained
• Accessory dwelling units are not permitted in single-family zones
• Backyard chickens are not permitted in single-family zones
• Beekeeping is added as an accessory use
• Private dormitory is added as a new use and rooming house redefined
• Urban agriculture is more clearly defined
• Recognizes existing authority and role of municipalities
• Revises thresholds between minor and major detailed site plans to require more site plan review
• Reinstates certification on nonconforming use procedure and removes ability to substitute one nonconforming use with another
• Eliminates the term adjustment for variances and departures
• Increases requirement for off-street parking inside the beltway from 1 to 1.5 spaces.

In general, staff is supportive of the direction and substance of the Comprehensive Review Draft and views it as an overall improvement. There are several specific issues that have the potential to substantially impact College Park and need to be further explored:
• Elimination of the Development District Overlay Zone (DDOZ) and Transit District Overlay Zone (TDOZ)
• Elimination of the Mixed-Use-Infill (M-U-I) Zone.
• Transition to proposed new zoning categories
• Applicability of Neighborhood Compatibility Standards
• Shift from discretionary to administrative review of development applications
• Changes to public notice and community involvement in the development review process
• Changes to the transportation adequacy requirements at time of subdivision

The Council may also want to address other issues and concerns during the Worksession discussion.

Nov
19
2017

North College Park Crime Map: November 12-18, 2017

Address Type
9500 Blk 52ND Ave Theft from auto
9300 Blk Baltimore Ave Breaking & Entering
Nov
18
2017

Today – Branchville Fire Co Vendor & Craft Show

Nov
17
2017

Tomorrow’s Farmers Market: It’s been a great season!

Vol. 3 Issue 29 – It’s been a great season!

The season will be coming to an end this Saturday.  Thank you to all of you who have been dedicated to our market every Saturday.  It’s been a great fifth season and it wouldn’t have been possibly without our dedicated customers and vendors.  We look forward to seeing you in April.

Raffle Time!

We have a lovely brand new Crock Pot (like the one pictured) that has been donated for a raffle.  Our vendors will fill the pot with items from our market.  Stop by the Market table and try for a chance at this with items from our vendors.
Some items from our vendors include a bracelet from Designed Naturally, one pound of coffee grains from Alcoba Coffee and beef jerky and cheese from Waltz Family Farm. A surprise veggie from Dicot Farm will also be part of the raffle.
Please note- the raffle will go from 9 until noon.  At noon a name will be drawn and the winner will be contacted.  All other names will be shredded and recycled.  The winner will need to be able to pick up their prize by 1pm.

Yoga!

Liz Doonan will be at the market from 11am until 12:15pm.
Strength + Balance Yoga for all levels.
Intro & Beginners Welcome.
Bring your mat and join in!

Instructor
Liz Doonan, 200 hr YT.
Yoga Alliance Registered.
11AM to 12:15PM.
Donation Based, $5 minimum suggested

 


This week’s vendors include*:

Amity Kitchen: Thai food, Spring Rolls and Mango Sticky Rice
Dicot Farm: Certified Organic Produce
Double Sharp: Local Musicians
Alcoba Coffee: Guatemalan coffee by the pound and by the cup
Roy and Arti’s Kitchen and Garden: Prepared Indonesian cuisine and vegetables
Starbucks: Giving away coffee grounds for composting or garden
Valencia’s Produce: Berries, flowers and herbs
Waltz Family Farm: Meat, eggs and cheeses
Inge’s Crochet: Handmade crochet items
Christiane’s Designs: Knit hats, gloves, scarves, pet and baby items
The Baked Apple: Apple muffins and breads
Calvert Farm: Produce and fruits
Designed Naturally: Natural bead jewelry
Heavenly Created Desserts: Hot dogs and desserts

* This list reflects the vendors who have informed the Market Manager that they will be at the market.  This list is subject to change due to weather, illness or other life events. 🙂

If you or someone you know is interested in becoming a vendor for our market please let us know.  We are always looking for more vendors. Our criteria is that the items have to be hand made.  If you prepare food- we are looking for other prepared food vendors.  Lastly, we are looking for a bread vendor.  If you know of a local company that would like to sell bread at our market please stop by the market’s information table to speak with either the Market Manager or one of the Market’s Board members.


Spay-A-Day Keeps the Litter Away

Through December 1st, 2017, the Prince George’s County Animal Management Division (AMD) will provide free spay/neuter services for dogs, cats and ferrets belonging to low-income individuals and families living in Prince George’s County (this does not include feral cats). This service is provided through a Maryland Department of Agriculture grant. For more information or to learn how you may qualify, contact Catherine Hernandez at 301-780-7252.

Nov
16
2017

WSSC May Raise Rates for Lower Usage Customers

At the last Tuesday’s meeting, a representative from WSSC came and talked about the proposed WSSC rate structure.

According to WSSC, under the new rate structure alternatives because by simplifying the rates from 16 tiers to 3 or 4 tiers, the rates at the lower usage tiers have to be increased to maintain revenue neutrality.

WSSC is saying the change is necessary to address the Public Service Commission’s finding that the current 16 tier rate structure was unduly preferential to low usage customers.

While the bill for a one person household would increase at the most by only $7.70 per quarter or about $2.56 per month, it is a relatively small amount. The Commission has a number of programs to support customers who have difficulty paying their water & sewer bill including the water fund, the customer assistance program, and bill payment plans.

According to WSSC, affordability has been a major priority for the Commission during the rate review process and we are committing to enhancing the existing programs before implementation of a new rate structure.

Nov
15
2017

City Asks SHA to Improve Traffic and Safety Issues on State Roads in College Park

At last night’s Council meeting, The Council approved a letter asking the SHA to improve a number of roads within College Park boundary.

On October 10, 2017, a representative from Maryland State Highway Administration gave a presentation to the City Council about ongoing projects in the City.

Council requested that a follow-up letter be sent to SHA to memorialize the City’s requests and concerns expressed during the presentation.

Regarding US 1 between IKEA Way and Cherry Hill Road, the Council asked that SHA continue to address capacity issues and the blockage of the intersections on US 1 at these locations. It also asked to post  “Do Not Block” signs at the intersection of Edgewood Road and Route 1.

Regarding the Greenbelt Road at Rhode Island Avenue (please see below), the letter asks the SHA to explore a raised median for pedestrian refuge and also to explore whether a HAWK signal would be appropriate for this location. The letter also asks a presentation at a future Council Worksession or a civic association meeting for neighborhood stakeholders regarding MD 193 at Rhode Island Avenue.

Nov
14
2017

North College Park Crime Map: November 6-11, 2017

Please see below last week’s crime map and let me know if you have any questions.

About the robbery incident on 53rd Ave., the investigation is still ongoing, however, Police has released the following to public.

On 11/08/2017 at 9:03 pm, Patrol officers responded to 9700 Blk 53rd Ave, for the reported citizen armed robbery. When officers arrived they came into contact with the victim who stated that he was a pizza delivery driver for Papa John’s. He was delivering an order at 9700 Blk 53rd Ave. When he arrived to deliver the pizza two black male suspects came from behind the rear of 9700 Blk 53rd Ave. The suspects both pointed black semi-automatic handguns at the victim and demanded his property. The victim complied and relinquished his property (Samsung Cell Phone, U.S. Currency) to the suspects. The suspects fled the scene on foot to the rear of 9700 Blk 53rd Ave. K-9 Unit responded and conducted a track with negative results. An exigent was requested for the victim’s cellphone.

The description of the suspects are as follows:
1.) B/M, Short Hair, Blk Jacket, Blk Jeans Blk handgun, NFD
2.) B/M, Blk clothing, Blk handgun, NFD

Address Type
9700 Blk 53RD AVE Citizen Robbery
9900 Blk Rhode Island AVE Theft
Nov
13
2017

City Eyes Acquiring Route 1 Properties by Eminent Domain for City Hall Project

At tomorrow’s meeting, the City Council will introduce an ordinance authorizing the acquisition of properties located at 7409 and 7411 Baltimore Avenue (Route 1) using eminent domain.

Once acquired, the land where these properties currently stand, will be part of the new City Hall project.

Five businesses at these locations will be affected by the acquisition, including Smoothie King, Subway, Hair Cuttery, Shanghai Cafe, and a cell phone repair shop. It’s unknown when the leases of these businesses will expire.

Currently, these properties are owned by Mrs. Margaret Jeanne Kurz Byrd of Melbourne Beach, FL. City Staff has been in preliminary discussions with Mrs. Byrd and her son, William Byrd, since October 2016 concerning the City’s interest in acquiring these two key parcels of land. Unfortunately, these discussions have not yet resulted in an understanding between the City and the Byrd family.

In 2015, City staff and the University of Maryland held a meeting to review design options for a joint development on the City Hall block between Baltimore Avenue and Yale Avenue. A conceptual design was presented before the City Council worksession in August 2015. According to the concept plan, a single building with a 30,000 SF City Hall and 45,000 SF of university offices would be built. A significant public plaza would occupy the Route 1 frontage and approximately 10,000 SF of retail could be accommodated initially on the ground floor of the university offices. A small amount of surface parking would be provided on site with most of the parking provided in the existing garage.

The sale price for the properties is not yet known. Total City Hall Redevelopment Project costs are conservatively estimated at $12,500,000 which include construction, planning, and land acquisition costs. The City has set aside roughly $4,500,000 to date for this anticipated capital cost. Additionally, the City has received a $400,000 State bond bill for development of this project and a $100,000 grant from the State Community Legacy Program for acquisition costs

A public hearing on this matter will take place at the November 28 Council meeting.

Nov
12
2017

City to Build Bike and Pedestrian Path on Campus drive

At this week’s Council meeting, the City Council will consider approving a feasibility study project to build a side path along the north side of Campus Drive between Baltimore Avenue and the Rhode Island Avenue Trolley Trail.

The City received a grant of $89,600 from the Maryland Department of Transportation Bikeways; the grant requires a 20% match. City funding could be up to $22,400. Currently staff estimates that the project will use $87,600 in grant funding and require a City match of $17,520.

The project “as envisioned” is a 10-foot wide paved bicycle and pedestrian path located on University of Maryland property. The design will require significant study and is especially challenging because the old Paint Branch Stream meanders along this area. Short bridges and boardwalks will be necessary in some areas of the proposed trail.

Staff is requesting Council move forward with approving a contract to award 30% design to the engineering firm of Wallace Montgomery and Associates of Hunt Valley, MD. This firm has an open contract with the Metropolitan Council of Governments (COG) and the City as a member of COG can piggyback on the competitive -bid rates that this firm has negotiated with COG.

Nov
11
2017

Today at the Hollywood Farmers Market

Vol. 3 Issue 29 – Honoring those who have served

The College Park VFW will be at the Farmers Market this Saturday.  Please stop by and say hello to Dave Turley who will be taking donations and giving away poppies.  Also, on the 11th the Veteran’s Memorial Committee will be holding their annual event at the Memorial (corner of Rt. 1 and Greenbelt Rd).

This Saturday is going to be a little chilly but we will be at the market.  Make sure you stop and grab a warm cup of coffee from Alcoba Coffee or a bowl of soup from Amity Thai Kitchen.  Double Sharp will not be at the market due to the weather.Senior Saturday

The last Senior Saturday will be this Saturday, November  11th! If you are 65+ and reside in College Park, please stop by the Market’s information table to receive $5.00 in market coupons to use only on November 11th from 9:00 am until noon.

 

Yoga!

Liz Doonan will be at the market from 11am until 12:15pm.
Strength + Balance Yoga for all levels.
Intro & Beginners Welcome.
Bring your mat and join in!

Instructor
Liz Doonan, 200 hr YT.
Yoga Alliance Registered.
11AM to 12:15PM.
Donation Based, $5 minimum suggested


Vendor Update

Waltz Family Farm has a new supply of pork this week.  Great cuts like loin roast, thick pork chops, lots of sausages (many different flavors), hams, pig cheeks and much more!  Stock up before the end of the season and check out the Waltz Family Farm Facebook page for pics and to stay up to date.

Heavenly Created Desserts will be back this weekend and the 18th.

Calvert Farm will be at the market this Saturday.


This week’s vendors include*:

Amity Kitchen: Thai food, Spring Rolls and Mango Sticky Rice
Dicot Farm: Certified Organic Produce
Double Sharp: Local Musicians
Alcoba Coffee: Guatemalan coffee by the pound and by the cup
Roy and Arti’s Kitchen and Garden: Prepared Indonesian cuisine and vegetables
Starbucks: Giving away coffee grounds for composting or garden
Valencia’s Produce: Berries, flowers and herbs
Waltz Family Farm: Meat, eggs and cheeses
Inge’s Crochet: Handmade crochet items
Christiane’s Designs: Knit hats, gloves, scarves, pet and baby items
The Baked Apple: Apple muffins and breads
Terrapin Care Center: Chiropractic Care
Calvert Farm: Produce and fruits

* This list reflects the vendors who have informed the Market Manager that they will be at the market.  This list is subject to change due to weather, illness or other life events. 🙂

If you or someone you know is interested in becoming a vendor for our market please let us know.  We are always looking for more vendors. Our criteria is that the items have to be hand made.  If you prepare food- we are looking for other prepared food vendors.  Lastly, we are looking for a bread vendor.  If you know of a local company that would like to sell bread at our market please stop by the market’s information table to speak with either the Market Manager or one of the Market’s Board members.


Spay-A-Day Keeps the Litter Away

Through December 1st, 2017, the Prince George’s County Animal Management Division (AMD) will provide free spay/neuter services for dogs, cats and ferrets belonging to low-income individuals and families living in Prince George’s County (this does not include feral cats). This service is provided through a Maryland Department of Agriculture grant. For more information or to learn how you may qualify, contact Catherine Hernandez at 301-780-7252.

 

 

Nov
10
2017

Local Boy Scouts Doing Food drive For Meals on Wheels

If you received a food Donation bag last weekend, this is to help collect non-perishable foods for local families in need. The Boy Scout 298 will be collecting your donations tomorrow.

Your donations will help those that receive Meals on Wheels services as well as others.

Here is a list of items acceptable: c

  • canned meats/fish
  • canned vegetables/fruit
  • canned soups/stews
  • canned milk
  • powdered milk
  • baby formula
  • baby cereal
  • cereal
  • peanut butter bars
  • boxes of rice or pasta
Nov
9
2017

Tonight’s NCPCA Meeting: Zoning Rewrite, Election Fund, Tax Credits and More..

Today is the second Thursday of the month, and thus the day when the North College Park Civic Association (NCPCA) has their monthly meeting.

The meeting will start with a presentation on ‘Summary of Residential Tax Credits & Other Info Useful to Homeowners in College Park’. It will be presented  by Mr. Thomas Rodden, Managing Attorney of RGS Title, LLC:

We’ll then hear a presentation on ‘P.G. County Small Donor Election Fund: Giving Government Back to the People’ by Ms. Suchitra Balachandran, President of West College Park Citizens Assn:

The newly Elected Mayor and Councilmembers. will then introduce themselves.

 

Members will then discuss the ‘Prince Georges County Zoning Code Rewrite’. As you know Prince George’s County is extensively revising its planning and zoning code. A draft document for review and comment is expected in January. The changes may have major impacts on development within and adjacent to residential areas. Members will discuss what we know at this time, and we will consider ways that NCPCA can be more involved and effective as the residential voice of North College Park.

NCPCA meets at Davis Hall, 9217 51st Avenue at 7:30 pm on the 2nd Thursday of each month, except July & August meetings are optional. Please send questions about NCPCA to johnkrouse@yahoo.com

Nov
8
2017

Thank you!

Kabir 768
Kennedy 469
Gill 304
Debosky 255

[Unofficial results can be seen here on City’s website]

I want to take a moment to thank you all for re-electing me and giving me the opportunity to serve you for the next 2 years as your City Council representative. The trust that you have put on me as your representative means a lot to me.

I also want to thank my two very special neighbors, Chris Gill and Beth DeBosky for running very spirited campaigns. I’m sure District 1 will continue to benefit from their engagement and services in coming days.

I also want to congratulate Council-Elect Kate Kennedy on her election as your other Council representative in District 1. I’ve had the opportunity working with Kate in the past, especially when we built the Hollywood community garden together. I’m excited to have her my new Council colleague in District 1. Some of the exciting projects we plan to work are Hollywood Streetscape project, the construction of the Gateway Park, and the next phase of the Duvall Field project. We’ll also work hard to implement the police study recommendations and bring more services and amenities to our residents of all ages in District 1.

I also want to congratulate Mayor Patrick Wojahn, PJ Brennan, Monroe Dennis, Dustyn Kujawa and Robert W. Day, for their re-elections. I look forward to working with them again as part of the next Council.

Please note, no matter how you voted, I will remain at your service. I ask your help in advising me with your ideas and thoughts, throughout my new fourth term. In the end, we are together on a journey to make our district a better place to live for all of our neighbors. Thank you and have a very good night!

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