Grant Applications to Open for Six State Housing Revitalization Programs

On May 19th, the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development will open an application portal for six programs supporting local housing, community and economic development, and other revitalization projects. Grants are intended to assist local governments and nonprofits, and run through the following programs: Community Legacy Strategic Demolition Fund – Statewide Strategic Demolition Fund – Project C.O.R.E. (Creating Opportunities for Renewal and Enterprise) Baltimore Regional Neighborhood Initiative National Capital Strategic Economic Development Fund Seed…

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DC Regional Metro Names New General Manager

The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) recently named Randy Clarke as its New General Manager and CEO. Earlier this week WMATA, which provides transit services for two of Maryland's largest counties, named Randy Clarke as its next General Manager and CEO. Randy Clarke, the current President and CEO of Capital Metro (CapMetro) in Austin, TX, will begin his new position at WMATA late summer and was selected following an exhaustive nationwide search, which included…

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MDE Co-Hosts County Level CO2 Emissions Panel

MDE will co-host a panel (in-person and virtual) on June 1 that will highlight a new data tool for local governments to track CO2 emissions. The Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE), Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) for Montgomery County, RMI, and Crosswalk Labs are pleased to invite you to a workshop to learn about A New Tool for Examining City and County Level CO2 Emissions. The tool, which is under development by Crosswalk Labs,…

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2022 Maryland Sustainable Growth Awards Nominations Open

The Maryland Department of Planning has officially opened nominations for the 2022 Sustainable Growth Awards.  The Maryland Sustainable Growth Awards celebrate significant achievements by individuals, businesses, organizations and local governments to realize the 12 planning visions adopted by the Maryland General Assembly. The annual awards promote exemplary work that represents or inspires collaboration, innovation, conservation, community impact and quality of life. The annual awards are presented by the Maryland Department of Planning (Planning) and are the highest level…

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Montgomery Officially Adopts Building Energy Performance Standards

Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich signed local legislation adopting building energy performance standards (BEPS). Yesterday Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich signed the “Building Energy Performance Standards” (BEPS) legislation (Bill 16-21) into law. The bill, which was passed unanimously by the County Council on April 19, will expand the County’s benchmarking requirements by setting minimum energy performance standards for existing buildings. This will be one of the most effective ways to reduce energy demand, and carbon…

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Maine May Preempt Local “Single Family” Zoning

Maine may become the third state to adopt state-level, single-family zoning legislation intended to preempt local autonomy.  Maine's state legislature is taking up legislation aiming to preempt local zoning processes, responding to concerns about housing prices. From coverage on the Reason website: Maine is embracing new California-style laws aimed at reducing restrictions on new housing. It could soon run into some of the same problems encountered by the Golden State's reforms. Last week, the Maine…

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Montgomery Seeks Volunteers to Spend Summer Mapping Heat

Montgomery County has put out a call recruiting volunteers to help county leaders map urban heat islands.  This summer, Montgomery County is doing a community heat-mapping project that will bring together local organizations and volunteers to produce heat maps and generate creative and collaborative solutions for extreme heat in our area. Montgomery will be one of 16 jurisdictions globally that will collaborate with National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and community scientists to map heat…

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EPA Threatens to Crack Down on Northern Neighbor

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently signaled they are to step up enforcement efforts to control Pennsylvania's water pollution.  Long-term advocates for a cleaner Chesapeake Bay may find reason to rejoice as the EPA puts Pennsylvania on notice for water pollution. After the EPA reviewed Pennsylvania’s updated plan to address pollution reduction goals for the Chesapeake Bay watershed, it found that the plan falls short of those goals largely due to the lack of resources…

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2022 Session: Recap and Wrap-Ups

Catch up on all of the latest outcomes of the 2022 Maryland General Assembly session with wrap-ups on important county-related bills in each policy area. This year, the Maryland General Assembly conducted a legislative session unlike any other due to the enduring COVID-19 pandemic. The unique circumstances surrounding the 444th legislative session, including necessary health and safety measures, posed a challenge for lawmakers and advocates alike, with one chamber in-person and the other remote for…

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