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Council Agenda: Charter Review, State Legislation, Federal Grants

A vote on building codes is also on Monday's agenda.

The appointment of members to a panel to review the city’s charter, a legislative briefing, the annual report of the city’s Planning Commission and a vote on building codes are on the Rockville City Council’s agenda for Monday.

The council also is scheduled to discuss how to spend federal Community Development Block Grants.

The council at  Meetings are broadcast live on Rockville 11.

Charter Review Commission

The council is scheduled to appoint 12 members to the city’s Charter Review Commission. They are:

  • Steven VanGrack, chairman.
  • David Celeste, Jr., Board of Supervisors of Elections chairman.
  • Wilma Bell.
  • John Britton.
  • Laura Berthiaume.
  • Margaret Chao.
  • Donald Hadley.
  • Susan Hoffmann.
  • Joseph Jordan.
  • Charles Littlefield.
  • Virginia Onley.
  • The Rev. Jane Wood.

The council held last month.

District 17 legislative briefing and city priorities

The District 17 delegation to the Maryland General Assembly is scheduled to give a presentation about the legislation that passed during the 2012 legislative session and the special legislative session last month and to discuss the city’s legislative priorities for the 2013 legislative session.

Planning Commission report

The city’s Planning Commission is scheduled to deliver its 2011 annual report. The report details the commission’s activities and changes in development patterns. State law requires municipal planning bodies to submit such a plan to the Maryland Department of Planning by July 1 each year.

Building codes vote

The council is scheduled to vote on revisions to city building codes that will bring the codes in line with national standards as required by state law. Many of the changes are to comply with energy efficiency requirements.

Community Development Block Grants

The council is scheduled to discuss the allocation of federal Community Development Block Grants for fiscal 2014, which begins in late 2013, and for fiscal 2015.

“CDBG funds must be used to primarily benefit low and moderate income households to provide decent housing, suitable living environments, and expand economic opportunities,” according to a city staff report

Federal grants to the city through the program declined by 35 percent over the past five funding rounds, city staff wrote. Staff is recommending that the city allocate 100 percent of the expected grant dollars to Rockville Housing Enterprises for public housing renovations and to the city’s program for providing aid to low- and moderate-income households to rehabilitate single-family homes. The recommendation includes cutting support to nonprofit programs, which totaled 15 percent of the grant amount in the current funding round.

The current round includes $31,690 to four nonprofits: the Asian Pacific American Legal Resource Center, the Korean Community Service Center, Manna Food Center and Stepping Stones Shelter. It also includes $78,464 to Rockville Housing Enterprises for public housing renovations and $101,158 to the city program to rehabilitate single-family homes.

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has not proposed any further cuts to the CDBG program, which gave the city a total of $211,312 in the current round, “but additional reductions are possible,” city staff wrote.

Closed-door session

The council is scheduled to hold a closed-door session at 6 p.m. to discuss “a matter that concerns the proposal for a business to locate, expand or remain in the City (Monetary and Non-Monetary Incentives); and to consult with counsel to obtain legal advice regarding pending litigation (Town Center),” according to the agenda.

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