ROCKVILLE, Md., March 14, 2011—The Montgomery County Council at 8:30 a.m. on Tuesday, March 15, will meet with County Executive Isiah Leggett as he presents his recommended Fiscal Year 2012 Operating Budget. The County entered the budget season with an estimated budget gap of $300 million.
County Executive Leggett will informally go over key points of his recommended budget in the Third Floor Conference Room of the Council Office Building at 100 Maryland Ave. in Rockville. This will begin the period of review of the budget by the Council, which could make changes before approving the budget in late May. The County Executive will formally present his budget at a news conference at 12 noon Tuesday at the Executive Office Building.
The meeting of the County’s top elected officials will be followed by the Council’s regular weekly general session that will begin at 9:30 a.m. in the Third Floor Hearing Room. The regular Council meeting, and a 3:30 p.m. meeting of the Planning, Housing and Economic Development (PHED) Committee, will be televised live by County Cable Montgomery (CCM—Cable Channel 6 on Comcast and RCN, Channel 30 on Verizon) and also will be available via streaming through the County Web site at www.montgomerycountymd.gov. The meeting will be rebroadcast on CCM at 9 p.m. on Friday, March 15. The informal morning meeting between the Council and County Executive will not be televised.
During the Council’s morning session, Bill 8-11 will be introduced. That bill, proposed by the County Executive, would impose a five-cent charge on each paper or plastic bag provided by a retail establishment to a customer at point of sale, pickup or delivery. The establishment would be required to indicate on a transaction receipt the number of bags provided.
The proposed tax would not apply to bags provided by a pharmacy containing prescription drugs; a newspaper bag or bag intended for initial use as a garbage, pet waste or yard waste; a bag provided at a seasonal event, such as a farmers market; or a paper bag that a restaurant gives a customer to take prepared food or drinks from the restaurant.
Retail establishments would retain one-cent of each five-cent tax to cover administration fees of collection.
A public hearing on Bill 8-11 is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, March 31.
During the morning session, the Council will hold worksessions on amendments to the Fiscal Years 11-16 Capital Improvements Program for projects for the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission, Montgomery County Fire and Rescue, transportation, housing and general government.
The PHED Committee, which is chaired by Nancy Floreen and includes Councilmembers Marc Elrich and George Leventhal, will meet in the Seventh Floor Hearing Room to continue its discussions on the Housing Element of the County’s General Plan. The housing element includes 20-year visions for many types of housing in the County, including affordable housing, workforce housing and housing for seniors.