News from Councilmember Valerie Ervin
Progress for District 5 Summer 2009
Val at Center for nonprofit Advancement 1 Dear Resident:
As the temperature continues to climb, community resources and activities in District 5 are on the rise.  As your councilmember, I have learned that it is difficult to make changes overnight; however, sometimes progress is worth the wait.  This summer I am seeing the fruits of some of my major initiatives on the County Council. 
On Monday, I had lunch with children at Rolling Terrace Elementary School to celebrate the expansion of the Summer Lunch Program.  As Chair of the Education Committee, I know that hunger doesn't take a summer break.  That's why I have pushed to expand free walk-in sites at our schools in neighborhoods where students are eligible to receive free and reduced meals.  These federally subsidized meals are essential to children who would otherwise go hungry during the summer.       
Also this month, I was proud to attend the first pre-kindergarten graduation at CentroNía in Langley Park.  There are not enough quality pre-kindergarten programs to fill the growing needs of working families throughout Montgomery County.  That is why I spearheaded the first Preschool Implementation Work Group to determine how the county will implement the state's recommendation that preschool opportunities are provided to all 4 year-olds by 2014.   I was excited to see these children succeed, and I will continue to work to expand high-quality preschool programs throughout the county. 
I have worked hard to keep up the momentum to revitalize communities in District 5.  As a result, public hearings for the Kensington Sector Plan and the Takoma/Langley Crossroads Sector Plan are scheduled at the Planning Board in July.  I am also happy to report that Governor Martin O'Malley selected Wheaton as one of Maryland's Smart Sites.  This designation encourages public and private investment and green building practices for capital projects that revitalize neighborhoods. 
We are still enduring growing pains associated with the Paul S. Sarbanes Transit Center and the Civic Building and Veterans Plaza in Silver Spring; however, once these projects are complete they will provide residents with the state-of-the-art facilities that Silver Spring deserves.
I hope you and your family and friends have a chance to relax over the next few months and take advantage of all that District 5 has to offer.  A small sample includes: the new community garden in Sligo Overlook Park; the farmers' markets in Kensington, Silver Spring, Takoma Park and Wheaton; film festivals in Silver Spring; Brookside Gardens in Wheaton; the Sligo Creek Golf Course; and concerts and events in Silver Spring, Kensington, Takoma Park and Wheaton.
On July 4th make a plan to attend Mid-County Sparkles at Albert Einstein High School in Kensington, the Bike Parade in Kensington, or the Takoma Park Parade.  I look forward to seeing you.  Enjoy your summer.

Val at Center for nonprofit Advancement 1
Valerie Ervin - District 5

Takoma Park's 120th celebration of the 4th of July is this Saturday.  Join us for the parade and celebrate Independence Day!  The parade begins at 10am at the intersection of Carroll and Ethan Allen Avenues. 
 Kids and Globe                                    
Ervin Requests Dishwasher on behalf of the Young Activist Club at Piney Branch Elementary School
I drafted a letter on behalf of the Young Activist Club to end the use of Styrofoam at Piney Branch Elementary School. The students raised $9,000 for a pilot project to buy a dishwasher and re-usable trays and utensils.  I asked that the school system work with the Club to initiate a pilot project for the upcoming school year.
 Wheaton Local First
Ervin Attends Wheaton Redevelopment Advisory Committee Meeting
On June 17, Councilmember Ervin attended the Wheaton Redevelopment Advisory Committee meeting to  listen to residents and discuss the county's efforts to jumpstart Wheaton's redevelopment.  The county has submitted a request for proposals to redevelop the area surrounding the metro station.  At the request of the Committee Chair, Councilmember Ervin will convene a meeting with federal and state representatives this fall to develop a top to bottom approach to redevelopment.
Ervin Requests Dale Drive Projects for FY11-16 CIP: Projects aim to decrease speeding and improve safety and accessibility for pedestrians and bicyclists.
It's the little things...
This section is devoted to residents who make requests to improve their community and with a little assistance from my office the little things get taken care of.  This spring;
  • Silver Spring residents requested and I followed up with the Department of Transportation to have Manchester Road between Piney Branch Road and Wayne Avenue repaved.
  • In Wheaton, a new, bigger, bus shelter will be installed next spring near the old Salvation Army store to protect residents from the elements.
In This Issue
Takoma Park 4th of July Parade and Fireworks!
Ervin requests dishwasher
Ervin attends Wheaton Redevelopment Meeting
Ervin requests projects for Dale Drive
On June 23 Councilmember Ervin attended the McKenney Hills - Carroll Knolls Civic Association meeting to discuss options for acquiring the Maryland College of Art and Design.  Once a new Planning Board member is selected, the Councilmember will write to Park and Planning requesting that the site be acquired under the Legacy Open Space program.
Ervin works to expand the Summer Food Program:
Fifty new sites created since 2007. 
Summer Lunch
I am working to make sure that children do not go hungry during the summer. I convened a multi-agency task force to expand the summer food program.  Since 2007, we have gone from 80 to 130 sites, including 7 free walk-in sites, where children can come for a free lunch during the summer. I'm thrilled to announce that Rolling Terrace Elementary School is the first free walk-in site serving District 5 children and families.
Councilmember Ervin in the News and on the Web
The Gazette - Wednesday, July 1, 2009: Free Summer Lunch Program Expands 
The Gazette - Wednesday, July 1, 2009: Money the next obstacle for residents hoping for parkland

The Washington Post - Tuesday, June 30, 2009: Hunger Doesn't Take a Summer Break, Subsidized Lunch Program for Children Expands to Meet Growing Demand

The Gazette - Tuesday, June 30, 2009: Officials to seek funding for long-delayed bike route, Metropolitan Branch Trail would connect downtown Silver Spring with downtown Washington D.C.

The Gazette - Wednesday, June 24, 2009: Block Party promotes 'Buy Local' Campaign

The Gazette - Wednesday, June 17, 2009: Single Mothers Struggle to Stay Out of Poverty

Johns Hopkins University - Montgomery County Campus: Councilmember Ervin Talks Political Civility