Saturday, May 18, 2013
'People,' 'testified' and 'college' also were big in Nancy Navarro's budget statement.
When Montgomery County Council President Nancy Navarro summarized the fiscal 2014 county budget, naturally, the words "county," "budget" and "Montgomery" featured prominently in her statement. Council members tentatively approved the spending plan in a unanimous straw vote Thursday. Other words that Navarro was fond of in describing the $4.8 billion plan: "percent," "funding," "college," "testified," "people" and "providing." See what else Navarro (D-Dist. 4) of Silver Spring thinks of the budget in the word cloud above. Read Navarro's statement here. What words would you use to describe the Montgomery County budget? What would be the big words in your word cloud?
Thursday, May 16, 2013
The plan includes tax increase, more cops in schools and more food resources for the poor.
No one went hungry in the $4.8 billion budget Montgomery County Council members tentatively approved Thursday. Key county agencies, including police, fire and rescue, schools and health and human services will receive more aid and new positions, according to an outline of the tentative spending plan released by the council. The council is scheduled to hold a final vote on the budget May 23, the last council session before a three-week recess. All nine council members voted to give tentative approval to the plan for fiscal 2014, which begins July 1. "Budgets are a reflection of our values. There are always more needs, and more wants, than there are resources available," Council President Nancy Navarro (D-Dist 4) of Silver Spring said in a …
Monday, May 6, 2013
Montgomery County Council meets most Tuesdays in Rockville.
Montgomery County Council members will continue to discuss Fiscal Year 2014's budget at its next meeting, planned for Tuesday, May 7, at 9:30 a.m. in Rockville. Allotments for several county agencies, including public safety divisions, housing and affordable housing programs and education and early childhood programs will be approved based on recommendations from the Council committees. Fiscal Year 2014 begins July 1, 2013. (Read the entire council agenda, attached to this article.)
Tuesday, April 30, 2013
Councilman Philip Andrews, a vocal opponent of the raises, was the only dissenting vote.
All but one member of the Montgomery County Council voted to approve pay raises for county government, police and fire and rescue employees Tuesday. It will be the first raise for government employees in four years. Councilman Philip M. Andrews (D-Dist 3) of Gaithersburg, was the only dissenting vote. County Executive Isiah Leggett (D) negotiated the pay increases in his $4.8 billion budget proposal for fiscal 2014 as part of new two-year contracts with employees’ unions. Fiscal 2014 begins July 1. Most county employees will receive two raises this summer: a cost-of-living increase and a step increase. A step is a pay raise for one year of service. Police officers will receive an increase equal to one-and-a-half steps and firefighters …
Monday, April 29, 2013
Montgomery County Council meets most Tuesdays in Rockville.
Montgomery County Councilmembers will discuss county employee contracts at its next meeting, planned for Tuesday, April 30, at 9:30 a.m. in Rockville. The Council’s Government Operations and Fiscal Policy committees voted unanimously Thursday to back a proposal to raise county employees’ salaries by up to 3.25 percent. County Executive Isiah Leggett (D) negotiated the raises as part of new two-year contracts with employees’ unions and included them as part of his $4.8 billion budget proposal for fiscal 2014, which begins July 1. (Read the entire council agenda, attached to this article.)
Friday, April 26, 2013
County Council panels vote to back pay bumps for government and public safety workers.
A freeze in cost-of-living raises for Montgomery County government and public safety employees may be thawing out. The Montgomery County Council’s Government Operations and Fiscal Policy committees voted unanimously Thursday to back a proposal to raise county employees’ salaries by up to 3.25 percent. County Executive Isiah Leggett (D) negotiated the raises as part of new two-year contracts with employees’ unions and included them as part of his $4.8 billion budget proposal for fiscal 2014, which begins July 1. If approved as part of the county budget, the 3.25 percent raise for county government workers would go into effect in September. Police officers would see a 2.1 percent bump in July. Fire and rescue personnel would see a 2.75 …
Thursday, April 25, 2013
Four Montgomery County Councilmembers agreed that the one-year-old tax was not appropriate for non-food businesses.
A sweeping measure that aimed to reduce plastic bag consumption and litter in Montgomery County may see its days numbered, at least in the current iteration. County councilmembers Roger Berliner (D-Bethesda), Craig Rice (D-Germantown) and Nancy Floreen (D-At Large) proposed Tuesday to limit the scope of the county's 5-cent bag tax to only apply to food stores, not retail businesses or take-out restaurants. Councilman George Leventhal (D-At Large) decided to co-sponsor the bill during the council meeting. "There are things we need to clean up with this bill," said Rice, noting that he has heard the tax was challenging for clothing retailers. Since the bill went into effect last January, the county has raked in more than $2 million in bag…
Wednesday, April 10, 2013
Plan aims to improve business competitiveness by reducing raises for county employees.
Montgomery County Councilman Philip M. Andrews on Tuesday introduced a plan to reduce the 2010 increase in Montgomery County’s energy tax by 10 percent. The county's energy tax was raised by 155 percent on homeowners and by nearly 60 percent on businesses and nonprofit organizations in 2010, according to a County Council news release. A 10 percent reduction would reduce county revenues by $11.4 million in fiscal 2014, which begins July 1. Andrews (D-Dist. 3) of Gaithersburg proposes paying for the energy tax reduction by slashing the pay increases for county employees over the next two years. Andrews, who is running for Montgomery County Executive in next year's election, criticized the agreement struck between the county employees …
Monday, March 18, 2013
Takoma Park’s Thomas Perez is Obama’s pick to succeed Solis.
President Barack Obama nominated Takoma Park resident and former Montgomery County Councilman Thomas E. Perez as U.S. Secretary of Labor on Monday, CBS News reported. Perez served as secretary of the Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation under Gov. Martin O’Malley from 2007 until his confirmation in October 2009 as an assistant attorney general heading the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice. Perez “knows what it's like to climb the ladder of opportunity,” Obama said in a video of Monday’s announcement posted on CBSNews.com. “He's the son of Dominican immigrants. He helped pay his way through college as a garbage collector and working at a warehouse. He went on to become the first lawyer in his family…
Friday, March 8, 2013
Montgomery County Councilwoman Valerie Ervin plans to take legal action against www.valunmasked.com, The Washington Examiner reported.
Montgomery County Councilwoman Valerie Ervin is fighting a website that anonymously posted political attacks against her, The Washington Examiner reported Wednesday. Ervin (D-Dist. 5) of Silver Spring plans to pursue legal action against the website, www.valunmasked.com, which attacks the Silver Spring councilwoman for her various political relationships. The website says: "What you see is not what you get. Valerie's political career is all about saying one thing and doing another. Pretending to support people only to abandon them for personal gain." "This is not the kind of thing we see [in Montgomery County]," Ervin said, according to the report. "We're better than that, and we're going to show everybody that we're going to stop these …