Posted by meganmoriarty on November 13, 2009
The Neighbors Campaign was well represented at last night’s County Executive’s Town Hall meeting in Takoma Park!
Even though it was a cold, rainy night and some of us had been at the IMPACT Now event at 6:30 in the morning…thirteen of us came out to share our thoughts, ideas and questions with the County Executive. It was a full house at Takoma Park Middle School and lots of local media folks were there, as well as plenty of County staff on hand to answer specific questions and connect with residents. See Reemberto Rodriguez’s pictures here.
Rosa kicked things off by thanking the CE for his support of the Neighbors Campaign and explained that she enjoys her role as a Community Connector and hopes funding continues (with maybe even more hours in Wheaton :)) She was also interviewed by Univision for the local news!
Then Pedro asked a great question about what the government can do to help residents like him in the Long Branch neighborhood that are looking for construction jobs in this bad economy — especially Latinos that he feels give so much back to our County. Others in the audience agreed with his message and gave him a warm round of applause. The CE responded that he hopes the economy will turn around soon and construction will re-start.
Miguel stood up a few minutes later and spoke about three concerns that he has: school transportation, funding for non-profits and vocational programs for youth. The CE told him they could look into the distance kids at Glen Haven Elementary are walking and possibly make a recommendation to the school system to add a bus. He could not promise more funding for non-profits given the budget situation, but praised the work of IMPACT and Neighbors Campaign! Finally, he stressed the need for youth to first finish high school, but did agree that more affordable vocational programs were needed.
Last, but not least, following up on a similar question from another audience member, Maria asked what help there is for families facing foreclosure. She related that as a Community Connector she hears many stories about neighbors that cannot pay the mortgage, especially those that have lost their jobs. The CE requested she get in contact with the Office of Consumer Affairs representative that was at the meeting, as they can provide information about resources available for residents dealing with foreclosure.
Martha and Mohammed had questions ready also, but they ended the meeting before they had a chance to ask them…I’ll share another amazing outcome from the meeting in the next post (including a video).
Thanks to everyone for coming out and sharing your observations about your community with the County Executive!