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Town of Chevy Chase
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Send Date:
1/21/2022 12:41:54 PM
Email Subject:
Weekly Town Updates -- January 21, 2022

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Residents Encouraged to Participate in County Council
Listening Session on Thrive on Thursday, January 27, 7 p.m.

The County Council has not yet scheduled any work sessions to deliberate on Thrive Montgomery 2050 (aka Thrive).  However, County Council President Albornoz has organized a series of Thrive Listening Sessions during the month of January.  Each of these sessions, hosted by a local County Regional Center Citizen Advisory Board, will provide an opportunity for residents to directly comment and question President Albornoz and County Council Staff on the principles of Thrive.  The B-CC Regional Center Listening Session will be held virtually on Thursday, January 27 at 7 p.m.  

Residents are encouraged to participate by joining the Microsoft Teams meeting from a computer or mobile app: Click here to join the meeting or call in (audio only) +1 443-692-5768,,305946396#  Conference ID: 305 946 396#.  Residents can also read a comprehensive response letter about Thrive, which was submitted on December 14 by Mayor Rush to the County Council.

An additional way for residents to provide feedback is through a recent survey about parks from the Montgomery County Parks Department.  If you have any questions, concerns, or suggestions about Thrive or parks please contact Councilmember Ellen Cornelius Ericson at

4-H Redevelopment Update

In December, the new owners of the 4-H property, Galerie Living and Community Three, informed the Town that they had begun developing a concept plan for redevelopment of the property, taking into account the Town’s September 30 letter, and will work most of January on refining that concept.  The owners anticipate presenting a concept plan to the Town in mid-February.

The owners expect the planning and entitlement processes to take at least 30 months.  In the interim, they will temporarily fence the property while it is vacant.  Since the fence will be located in the front yards of the property, and the Town does not allow front yard fences, the Town Council approved a variance request, with conditions, at its January 19 meeting.  More information is available in the January 19 Council Reporter.

We encourage all residents to listen and participate as we learn more about the redevelopment plans for the 4-H property.

Zimmerman Park Redevelopment Plan

On January 19, the Town Council met to review and discuss revised concept plans, cost estimates, and a community survey related to the redevelopment of Zimmerman Park.  The Council agreed to several changes to the base concept plan and the concept plan with amenities.  The Town’s consultant will incorporate these changes into the revised plans, which the Town expects to present to residents next week, along with a survey requesting resident views about the plans and possible amenities.

Council Lowers Voting Age to Sixteen

On January 12, following a public hearing, the Town Council voted 4-1, with Mayor Rush opposed, to lower the Town voting age to 16 for residents who wish to participate in Town elections.  Mayor Rush stated his preference to permit voting by residents who turn 18 by the November election date used for state and federal elections.  The charter amendment implementing this change will become effective 50 days after adoption (or March 3, 2022), barring any voter petition requiring a referendum.

Council Approves Removing Entry Restriction at Maple/Aspen

On January 19, the Town Council approved removing the entry restriction on northbound Maple Avenue at Aspen Street.  This signage change, which was subject to a public hearing on January 12, will allow traffic to exit onto East West Highway via Maple Avenue instead of via Aspen Street, Chatham Road and Meadow Lane from 4 to 6 p.m. Monday thru Friday.  The Council agreed to several conditions related to its decision.  More information is available in the January 19 Council Reporter.

Free COVID-19 Test Kits and Masks

Montgomery County residents can pick up free, rapid at-home COVID-19 test kits and N95 masks at 19 Montgomery County Public Libraries (MCPL).  Test kits and masks are available on a first-come, first-served basis until supplies run out.  Residents can get two test kits and four adult N95 masks per person per day.  Each kit contains two tests. More information is available on the County’s COVID-19 testing page at

The Federal Government provides free, rapid at-home COVID-19 test kits.  The limit is 4 kits per household and will be sent via the US Postal Service.  To order these tests, please visit

Gas-Powered Leaf Blowers Banned January 1-October 14

Residents are reminded that, effective January 1, 2022, the use of gas-powered blowers is prohibited from January 1 through October 14.  The Town Council approved this ban in response to resident concerns about noise and other impacts of this type of landscaping equipment.  The regulations exempt gas-powered snow blowers and sprayers.  Montgomery County noise regulations also remain in effect in the Town. 

In February and March, the Town ‘s Climate and Environment Committee will undertake a community awareness campaign about the ban.  The campaign will include community listserv and email messaging; door-to-door distribution of placards with information about the ban; lawn signs; outreach events to landscapers; and letters to landscapers who work in the Town.

Battery-Powered Blower Rebate Program

The Town offers a rebate program for battery-powered blowers and related equipment that is intended to reduce the noise from landscaping activities.  Residents may request a rebate for half the cost of the purchase of a battery-powered blower, batteries, and chargers, up to a maximum rebate of $200 per household.  The equipment may be purchased by a resident or by a contractor for use in landscaping activities on the resident’s property.  More information about the program and an application form can be found here.

Town of Chevy Chase Book Club Meeting
Monday, January 24, 7 p.m. via Zoom

Our Town of Chevy Chase Book Club will meet via Zoom on Monday, January 24 at 7 p.m. to discuss Klara and the Sun by Kazuo Ishiguro, a tale of a companion robot chosen by a sick child.  Save the date for our next meeting on March 14 when we will discuss Mrs. Lincoln’s Dressmaker by Jennifer Chiaverini, a historical novel on the remarkable friendship between Mary Todd Lincoln and her seamstress Elizabeth Keckley, a freed slave.  This event is sponsored by the Community Relations Committee.

Please RSVP to to receive the Zoom link. 

Stay Safe Online: Protect Yourself from Fraud
Wednesday, January 26, 7 p.m., via Zoom & 
Thursday, January 27, 7 p.m. via Zoom

Learn how to protect yourself from identity theft and online scams so that you can more safely use the internet from your smartphone, tablet, and computer.  The Town is offering two interactive sessions, led by our very own Town resident, Brian Geffert, Global Chief Information Security Officer at KPMG International.  A session for parents will be held on Wednesday, January 26 at 7 p.m. via Zoom, and a session for seniors will be held on Thursday, January 27 at 7 p.m. via Zoom.  Materials, including internet safety tips, and the recording will be shared with those who attend.  Please RSVP to

Kids Scavenger Hunt
Sunday, January 30, 3:30 p.m., Lawton Center Playground

Join us for a free kids winter scavenger hunt at the Lawton Center playground on Sunday, January 30 at 3:30 p.m.  The scavenger hunt will be geared towards ages 1-6, but all ages are welcome.  There will be snacks and prizes!  This event is sponsored by the Community Relations Committee.

Green Town Series Zoom Webinar
MD Climate Crisis and Environmental Justice Act
Thursday, February 3, 6:30 to 8 p.m.

The Climate & Environment Committee is hosting a Zoom webinar to provide Town residents and other nearby communities and organizations with information about the Maryland Climate Crisis and Environmental Justice Act, a bill that has been pre-filed for the 2022 Maryland legislative session.  Representatives from Climate XChange will update us on this important bill.  The Climate Crisis and Environmental Justice Act plans for our already changing climate by placing an incrementally rising fee on fossil fuel to send a market signal to businesses; reduce pollution; create revenue for vulnerable populations, and build the infrastructure we need for a new green economy across the state including in our County and Town.  If you or someone you know is interested, please use this link to register.

Join Your Neighbors for an Online Wine Tasting
Tuesday, February 15, 7 p.m. via Zoom

This time, we are taking a warm escape to the Southern Hemisphere with the Wines of Argentina.  Amanda Page, a certified wine and spirits expert, will guide you through a fun, educational tour of what makes Argentina so unique, with its climate and elevation, while you sip on two classic wines.  The program will last approximately one hour, including time for questions.  Please RSVP to for details regarding the wine, discount code for Magruder’s, and the Zoom link.  No purchase is necessary to participate in this event, which is sponsored by the Community Relations Committee.

Favorite Plants for Challenging Situations

Thursday, February 24, 7 to 8 p.m. via Zoom

Mark your calendar for another informative talk by Edamarie Mattei, owner and founder of Backyard Bounty.  It’s safe to say that we all have challenging garden situations, such as too much or too little sun, sloping yards and drainage issues.  Here’s our chance to learn what to plant and how to deal with these and other issues.  This talk is part of the Town’s Community Relations Committee’s “Discussions and Desserts” series, so grab your dessert and join your neighbors virtually.  RSVP to to receive your Zoom.  Feel free to submit questions in advance within your email to the Town Office.

Cooking During COVID
Calling all cooks and everyone interested in food, including illustrators, writers, and poets

The Town’s Community Relations Committee is compiling an online compendium of recipes and food-related illustrations, poems, and essays inspired by life during COVID.  What have you been cooking or learned to cook to boost your and your family’s spirits during the pandemic?  Old standards or new favorites?  Have your habits around meals changed?  We’re especially interested in family recipes for comfort food, but illustrations, haikus, odes, and reflections (or ideas for take-out) are all encouraged.  Entries from residents of all ages are welcomed.  There is no deadline yet, but we’re eager to hear from you soon so we can try to put something together by late spring.  Please email entries to or mail to Town of Chevy Chase, 4301 Willow Lane, Chevy Chase, MD 20815.  Thanks in advance!

Winter Clothing Drive Continues Through February

Please help the men, women and children who depend on Interfaith Works Clothing Center to keep them warm.  They provide free clothing to 13,000 income-qualified residents each year, including nearly 6,000 children.  Please donate clean, gently used or never used warm coats, gloves, mittens, scarves, hats, sweaters, pants, and socks to those in need.  Also needed is waterproof warm winter wear for those who are outside in the cold rain or snow.  Since the town hall is still open only part time, the clothing box will be located on the front porch of Marjorie Shaw and Barney Rush, at 6917 Maple Avenue (between Stanford and Pine Place).  This project is sponsored by the Community Relations Committee.

What's Happening at Chevy Chase at Home (CC@H)

Chevy Chase At Home (CC@H) is a non-profit organization that helps local seniors “age in place.”  Full members have access to many exciting cultural, educational, social and health & wellness events.  They also enjoy a broad array of volunteer-provided services, including home safety visits, rides to medical and other appointments, and computer assistance.  All adults (60+) may join as Members, and adults of any age may become Associates and Volunteers.  JOIN CC@H NOW by calling 301-657-3115 or visiting

Click here to view the CC@H events calendar.

A Message about Recycling from the Town’s Climate & Environment Committee

The Town’s Climate and Environment Committee would like to share the following messages with Town residents to cooperate in driving high recyclable volume.

-- Follow the Town's single-stream recycling PDF guideline and only put accepted items in the recycling bin.  Place items separately in the bin, not inside a box or bag.  Dispose of other types of items in the appropriate fashion (garbage, hazardous waste, construction debris, etc.).

-- Do not put plastic bags in the recycling bin.  They are the biggest hindrance in the automated sorting process.   Plastic bags can be recycled at Safeway and other locations.

-- Do not put heavily soiled/contaminated material in the recycling bin since those have to be removed manually.  Soiled items should go in your garbage.  Minimally soiled containers are fine but no caked-on bottles/containers or greasy pizza boxes.

And please remember to Reduce, Reuse/Repair, Recycle IN THAT ORDER.   Eliminate single use everything (bags, boxes, packaging, etc.) as much as possible, especially non-recyclables like plastic bags and Styrofoam.  We appreciate your cooperation in greening our Town.

Climate & Environment Tip of the Month
"Spare the Salt!"

When snow and ice melt, the salt on roads, driveways and sidewalks gets dissolved with it, washing into adjacent storm drains, and making its way to our local waterways.  Once in the water there is no way to remove the sodium chloride, and at high concentrations salt can harm fish and plant life.  Salt is also a pet paw irritant, and it can seep into soil in your own yard, which can harm plants, and kill off microbes important to soil health and fertility.  Here are some winter salt best practices:

 -- Avoid using salt if at all possible.  Sand, ashes, or kitty litter are good alternatives if traction is the issue.  Sand is definitely a better bet below 15 degrees Fahrenheit, when salt will be ineffective.  Avoid using salt if the temperature is forecast to get above freezing for several hours of the day -- the ice will melt naturally, or enough so that you can easily scrape or shovel it away. 

 -- Try de-icing products that are less harmful than sodium chloride.  Alternative chemicals that are better for the environment are calcium magnesium acetate (CMA), calcium chloride or magnesium chloride.  Strosniders in Bethesda carries several alternatives. 

-- If you must use salt for safety purposes, shovel or scrape first.  The less snow and ice, the less salt you’ll need to use.  Use the smallest amount possible, then wait. It can take time for the salt to have its intended melting effect. 

-- After the snow and ice have melted, if you have leftover dry salt and/or sand, sweep it up for reuse, or proper disposal.  If you just leave it where it sits, it will eventually wash off into the watershed or your yard. 

-- For reinforcement of these points, here is the County salt website

Town Office Hours

Town staff is available in the office on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.  Town office hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.  There may be a staff member to assist you on other days, but please contact the Town office in advance to schedule a visit.  Residents can contact the Town office at 301-654-7144 or at

Stay Informed

Residents are encouraged to connect with the Town through the Town Crier email alert system and with fellow residents through the private Town Neighbors listserv.  For information on how to join this listserv, please email  Both resources offer an important way to stay informed and in touch.

Upcoming Meetings & Events

Click here to view the Town calendar.  

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