The Glass Gazette: December 2019


The Glass Gazette: December 2019

Vision Zero Town Hall - You're Invited!

There have been 13 deaths and nearly 600 incidents involving pedestrians and bicyclists on Montgomery County roads in 2019.


Join me in Rockville this Saturday, December 14 at 10:00 a.m. for a countywide town hall to discuss our efforts to keep our streets safe for pedestrians, bicyclists, drivers — everyone.


Leaders from the Department of Transportation, the State Highway Administration and other important agencies and organizations will provide updates on their efforts to implement Vision Zero and to hear your thoughts and concerns.

Use this link to RSVP: please spread the word!

vision zero

Housing Impact Fairness Act

Last week the council held a public hearing on my legislation to raise $100 million for affordable housing and school construction — two of the most pressing needs facing our community.

The Housing Impact Fairness Act will generate $10 million a year by closing a loophole in the collection of impact fees when newly rebuilt homes (aka “teardowns”) are constructed. As proposed, the legislation would generate an additional $5.7 million a year for school construction and $4.3 million a year for the county’s affordable housing programs. Unlike all other types of new housing, newly rebuilt homes are currently exempt from paying impact fees that are used to support the growing infrastructure demands on the community.

You can watch this ABC news clip to learn more about my bill.



Homeless Resource Day

It was humbling, heartening and heartbreaking to attend Montgomery County's Homeless Resource Day, which was an opportunity for individuals and families experiencing homelessness or at risk of homelessness to access services, resources and information.

The number of individuals who attended highlights the incredible need to find housing for our most vulnerable neighbors. And the number of nonprofits and professionals who volunteered their services to help uplift those in need — from supplying winter coats and medical items to providing free haircuts and manicures — was a beautiful coming together of our community.

As the Council's point person on homelessness, I am incredibly proud of our efforts and commit myself to doing even more for those in need.

If you know anyone experiencing homelessness or at risk of becoming homeless, please call 240-907-2688 to learn about the resources available to our residents. 


Oversight and Small Business Investment Act

On December 3 I introduced the Oversight and Small Business Investment Act, which would require more oversight of taxpayer funds when used to support small business development. The legislation also expands the ability for qualifying small businesses to apply for matching research and development grants regardless of federal agency funding.

One year after we learned that Byung II ‘Peter’ Bang stole nearly $7 million from the taxpayers of Montgomery County, I remain concerned about the lack of oversight to ensure that public dollars are protected. Taxpayers deserve to know that county funds are being used to support homegrown businesses and that those funds will not be misappropriated.

These matching grants are intended to distinguish the county as a great place for small businesses and nonprofit research institutions to locate and expand their research and development. In its first year, 14 local businesses received matching funds totaling $550,000. These funds are currently being used to conduct groundbreaking research to cure cancer, autoimmune diseases and HIV; and the development of treatments for chronic depression and drug addiction, among other research. 

You can watch my introductory remarks about the bill here.



Elizabeth Square

In 32 months Montgomery County will welcome Elizabeth Square — a multi-generational, mixed income and mixed-use complex which will combine sustainability, the arts, and recreation in the heart of downtown Silver Spring! 

Elizabeth Square is a terrific partnership between the county, the Housing Opportunities Commission and Lee Development Group. Among the many amenities and public benefits of this project include affordable housing for seniors, an aquatic center, and a central plaza for the community –– all located steps from the Metro, MARC and future Purple Line stations.

I was excited to attend the groundbreaking and look forward to attending the grand opening!

e square

Giving Back During the Holiday Season

Thank you to Shepherd's Table and Food & Friends for inviting my team and I to serve warm meals and make home food deliveries in advance of the Thanksgiving holiday. The love and compassion exemplified by these two great organizations, their staff and volunteers fills my heart.

You can watch highlights of our volunteering here.

Wishing you a happy and healthy holiday season!



MoCo Reconnect is a resource for youth and young adults ages 16 to 24 who have stopped attending high school.

MoCo Reconnect is now offering services specifically to help LGBTQ+ youth adjust to life outside of school. Services include healthcare, housing, educational assistance and other support services.