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by Judith Hruz
The District 14 delegation to the General Assembly has brought home a “record” amount of money that will allow local organizations to move forward with infrastructure improvements and community-based projects.
One of those projects, the Olney Satellite Police Station, will receive $175,000 to replace the trailer that now houses the facility with a permanent satellite station structure.
The structure will house Montgomery County Police Department District 4 staff, as well as improve the public’s access to police support.
It will also provide meeting space for civic groups and organizations.
Sen. Craig J. Zucker (D) of Brookeville said the county will assist with the planning of the new structure and is expected to help pay for the lease.
The station, in front of the former Giant Food store at 17821 Georgia Ave., has served the community since 1997, but its presence was in jeopardy when the previous lease expired, and the property was sold by Giant to a local investment group, Olney One Center LLC.
A 15-year lease was negotiated with the new owner of the property last year.
The satellite station functions as a place for officers to conduct roll call, write reports, eat lunch or use the restroom without having to leave the Olney area to return to the 4th District police station on Randolph Road in Glenmont.
Its presence is important for businesses and residents, as it shortens police response times and serves as a visible deterrent to crime.
Since its opening, funding has been coordinated through the Olney Chamber of Commerce and includes donations from community events such as National Night Out, along with contributions from local businesses, homeowners associations, organizations and residents.
The chamber purchased the trailer that houses the facility, and later expanded it to provide additional space and restrooms. The chamber coordinates and funds maintenance and upkeep, as well as other expenses, as needed.
Zucker had said earlier in the 2021 legislative session that the delegation was working to help fund such projects as the satellite station.
Although nothing was guaranteed until the session was complete, Zucker said he and Del. Anne Kaiser, Del. Eric Luedtke and Del. Pamela Queen were working toward that goal.
The delegation applauded the passage of Maryland’s Capital Budget, House Bill 590 Creation of a State Debt – Maryland Consolidated Capital Bond Loan of 2021.
The Capital Budget of Maryland will invest more than $1.1 billion in local projects across the state. The team made sure that Montgomery County and District 14 received their fair share of that state funding.
“The capital budget of Maryland will put hundreds of people to work by investing in infrastructure and our local community treasures here in Montgomery County,” Zucker, Kaiser, Luedtke and Queen said in a joint statement. “The District 14 delegation ensured that our communities received their fair share of this critical funding.
They added, “During these difficult times we wanted to make sure we delivered for the people of our district who expect and deserve nothing less. Each project that we requested was fully funded.”
The projects receiving funds include:
The Burtonsville Parking garage project received $5 million for a feasibility study, land planning, and project financing study for a new approximate 1,000-space parking garage.
The Friends House Retirement Community in Sandy Spring received $200,000 for the second phase of the campus expansion and renovation plan. It includes the renovation of existing buildings, construction of affordable senior apartments, upgraded facilities and grounds.
The Dolores R. Miller Park in Laytonsville received $20,000 for the construction, repair and improvements to the park that started in 2019. The park includes benches, a bike rack, drinking fountain and paved path.
The Town of Brookeville received $200,000 for road resurfacing, curb/gutter and sidewalk replacement, traffic calming measures, stormwater management, street lighting, landscaping, signage and other public space improvements.
The Damascus Recreational Park in Damascus received $225,000 for the installment of athletic lighting to extend use of the baseball and softball fields beyond sunset.
The Sandy Spring Museum in Sandy Spring received $100,000 for phase one of improvements to the west side of the property, including stormwater management, hardscaping and landscaping improvements, and the installation of Americans with Disabilities Act-accessible walking paths.
The District 14 team applauds the funding, stating: “We are grateful to bring back these much needed funds to District 14. Each of these projects will provide a benefit to our community for many years to come.”
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