Submit Your Questions Now for the #MACoCon Smart Growth Subcabinet Meeting

The Smart Growth Subcabinet will be meeting at the 2019 December MACo Winter Conference and answering your questions on land use, environment, transportation, and other important county issues. Let MACo know if you have a topic you want directly addressed at the meeting (see instructions near the end of this post.) A Chat with the Smart Growth Subcabinet Description The Smart Growth Subcabinet oversees and advises on Maryland’s growth policies and laws. Its members (mostly…

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International Cycling Race Coming to Maryland Labor Day Weekend 2020

Starting Labor Day Weekend of 2020, Baltimore will host a major international cycling race for three years. While few detailed have been finalized, the 110- to 125-mile race would start and end in Baltimore City, but travel through surrounding counties. Terry Hasseltine, executive director of Maryland Sports and vice president of communications for the Maryland Stadium Authority, believes the event will bring a $20 million benefit to the area. From Baltimore Sun's coverage: The organizers…

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Save the Date: Historic Preservation Capital Grants Workshops

The Maryland Department of Planning offers a series of opportunities to learn more about grant writing for historic preservation throughout the state this November. The Historic Preservation Capital Grant Program promotes the acquisition, restoration, and rehabilitation of historic properties in Maryland. Eligible properties are listed in or eligible for the National Register of Historic Places, either individually or as a contributing structure within a district. According to the Maryland Historical Trust, the program has received…

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Baltimore County Refines Open Space Waiver Fee; Exempts Senior Housing From Impact Fees

A Baltimore Sun article (2019-09-04) reported that the Baltimore County Council approved legislation that eliminates deductions from developer fees for building and maintaining small parks or open space. Under County law, new home developers must set aside 1,000 square feet of open space per dwelling unit or pay an "open-space waiver fee." Previously, developers could reduce the fee by providing certain amenities, such as rooftop pools. However, such reductions are eliminated for new housing projects starting after…

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See Your County’s Latest “Open Space” Plan

As counties submit their annual Program Open Space (POS) land acquisition and facility development plans, they are posted on the Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) website. Under state law, counties are required to submit their plans by July 1 to DNR and the Maryland Department of Planning for approval. To see your county's annual submission click here.    

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Montgomery Set to Unveil State-of-the-Art Library, Community Rec Center

Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich and Council President Nancy Navarro will preside over a ribbon-cutting ceremony to officially open the new Wheaton Library and Community Recreation Center on Sunday, September 8th at 2 p.m. The $70.9 million project and 92,000-square foot building is the first combined complex of its kind in Montgomery County, which will include a library, community recreation center, Friends of the Library used bookstore, park, underground parking garage and redesigned roadway. The…

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Getting Educated on Natural Grass & Synthetic Turf at 2019 Summer #MACoCon

County parks and recreation officials offered their perspectives on natural grass, synthetic turf, and heat policies at the 2019 MACo Summer Conference during the “Play Ball: What You Need to Know About Natural and Synthetic Turf” panel on August 15. The panelists responded to five prepared questions. The questions included: How does your county incorporate natural grass and synthetic turf fields into your athletic and recreational programs? What are the advantages and drawbacks of natural…

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It’s Not All About Getting High

Drones can do all sorts of things. In the words of one of today’s panelists on the MACo Summer Conference panel, The Underappreciated Upsides of Unmanned Aircraft Systems, a drone program is much like a cannabis business -- it’s not all about getting high. The six panelists from various county government agencies, state government, and the private sector shared many applications for county use, including: Surveying Construction monitoring Media, sharing county news with residents Communications and public…

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Should My Turf Fields Be Natural or Synthetic? Learn About Both at #MACoCon

Are you looking to install or update your athletic fields? Not sure whether natural or synthetic turf is best for you? If so, make an informed choice by getting up-to-date on natural and synthetic turf fields and heat policies at the 2019 MACo Summer Conference. Play Ball! What You Need to Know About Natural and Synthetic Turf Description Your residents expect athletic fields and playground areas as part of the public services you provide. Done…

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Does Your County Have a Land Use, Environment, or Recreation Problem? UMD’s PALS Program May Be Able to Help

The Partnership for Action Learning in Sustainability (PALS) program continues to assist counties and municipalities across Maryland to solve a variety of large and small sustainability challenges. PALS can work with local governments on land use, transportation, environmental, economic development, and human resources issues. A few past PALS projects have included turf management, succession planning, and stormwater management projects. PALS is a low-cost assistance program that leverages University of Maryland (UMD) graduate and undergraduate students to produce “real world”…

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