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Date: January 11, 2022

Place: Conference Call Only Due to COVID-19

Time: 7:30 PM

Present: Greg Chernack, Pat Xeller, Maryann Luongo, Josh Galper, Phillip Giordano, and Ashley Kavanaugh

Agenda Item: Greetings and Introductions

Chairman Greg Chernack called the meeting to order and welcomed those in attendance.

Agenda Item: Review and Approval of December Council Meeting Minutes

Chairman Chernack moved that the minutes from the December meeting be approved; there was a second, and the motion passed.

Agenda Item: Residents comments

There were no resident comments.

Agenda Item: Monthly Financial Report

The Town Manager presented an overview of the Section’s current financial status, and entertained questions from the Council.

Agenda Item: Manager’s Report

-There was one private tree removal application approved this month.

-There were no new building permits issued.

-The Section snow crews have been busy due to the recent weather. Residents have been very complimentary of their efforts.

-The Manager met with a contractor from Precision Concrete and conducted a walkthrough of several areas the Section has identified as known sidewalk trip hazards. The contractor is in the process of preparing a quote. Depending on the quote and their availability, we hope to start the work as soon as possible.

-Our composting contractor sends us a monthly participation report. There are some houses that have bins but are not participating. Since this is an opt-in service that the Section pays for, the Manager recommends that we put a note in our next newsletter that gently reiterates the cost to the Section and that if their household no longer finds the service useful, we recommend that they cancel or postpone their address’ service so that we do not continue to pay for it.

-Montgomery County is looking for additional sites to distribute Covid-19 rapid test kits. The County currently operates 19 different sites including one at the Chevy Chase library. They have asked municipalities to consider hosting and staffing sites. The Council discussed the idea but decided that given our small size, limited staff, and no physical location for a Town office, we will not volunteer to host at this time.

-The Manager provided an update on the 4-H center sale. Per the Town of Chevy Chase’s website on December 9, the purchasers informed the Town that they have begun the concept stage of planning, considering the Town’s letter, and will be working most of January on refining that concept to be in presentable form.  The purchasers anticipate having something to share with the Town towards the end of January 2022. The owners expect the planning and entitlement processes to take at least 30 months.  In the interim, they have requested a variance from the Town to fence the property while it is vacant.  The fence is proposed to be located in the front yards of the property along Connecticut Avenue, Thornapple Street and Woodside Place.  The Town does not allow front yard fences; therefore, a variance is required.  The variance hearing will be held at the January 12 Council meeting.

-The Manager provided an update on Thrive Montgomery 2050. The County Council has not yet scheduled any work sessions to deliberate on 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.

-At the December meeting, there was a question regarding when DC planned to reinstate the reversible lanes on Connecticut Avenue that change with the morning and evening rush hour, and also the long-term plan for parts of Beach Drive that are now closed to allow for more social distancing for walkers and bikers. The Manager learned that DC has decided to permanently discontinue the use of the reversible lanes on Connecticut to better accommodate bike and pedestrian traffic. A final decision has not been made regarding Beach Drive, but the National Park Service is considering making the closure permanent. The Manager contacted Chris Conklin with the Montgomery County Department of Transportation to discuss both closures and the impact that this will have on commuters coming to DC. The closures coupled with the new development at Chevy Chase Lake, the redevelopment of the 4-H Center on Connecticut, and the already existing heavy traffic volume on Connecticut, East West Highway, and Brookville Road are concerning. The Manager asked if the County had done a traffic impact survey that includes all these factors. The County acknowledged they had not done a study and since the areas span several different jurisdictions (State Highway, Montgomery County, DC, and NPS) there may not have been proper coordination for the proposed changes. The County agreed that a meeting of all parties would be helpful. They will reach out to the appropriate parties and keep the Section informed.

-The Manager was contacted by the Village of Martin’s Additions Manager, Niles Anderegg, about the possibility of installing a temporary speed hump on Thornapple Street east of Brookville. This particular section of Thornapple Street is unique in that it straddles both Section 5 and VMA boundaries. VMA will hold a zoom meeting on January 27 to discuss the possible speed hump, share traffic study information, and entertain feedback from residents. The Section 5 Manager will reach out to residents in this area to make them aware of the meeting.


Chairman Chernack adjourned the meeting. The next meeting will be held February 8, 2022, at 7:30 PM at the Village Hall, 5906 Connecticut Avenue. The Village Hall has handicapped access. Everyone is welcome.