Budget Highlights

A Responsive and Accountable County Government...

  • Montgomery County received the following awards in 2014:

  • eBudget – Knowledge Management System

  • Energy Modernization Initiative

  • Maintenance and Transit Operations Center

  • Open Dataset Pipeline Strategy

  • Rainwater Harvesting System

  • Smart Growth Initiative

  • Saving Water and Sewer Costs Project

  • Successfully retained the County’s AAA bond rating from the three major credit rating agencies in the Fall of 2014.

  • Received the GFOA Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting for the FY13 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR). This will be the 44th year for this achievement, longer than any other government in the USA and Canada.

  • Provide for community organizations that augment County services including $1.1 million for community organizations serving the disabled, $977,459 for organizations extending senior services,$446,290 for organizations providing public health services,$757,580 for community organizations supplementing County behavioral health services, and $1.2 million for organizations providing safety net services to County residents. These community organizations are critical to an effective network of services and are often able to provide these services in a more cost-effective, culturally appropriate, and flexible way than County Government. They are also able to leverage community resources that are unavailable to County Government.

  • Implement a Network Operations Center (NOC) for the County’s FiberNet network. The NOC will provide situational awareness of FiberNet on a 24x7 basis, respond to faults in the network in order to restore services in a timely manner, participate in service provisioning activities with participating agencies and Montgomery County Government’s Department of Technology Services (DTS) associates, and develop utilization reports and capacity planning studies showing FiberNet’s ability to satisfy participating agency bandwidth and service requirements.

  • Department of Liquor Control continued to develop its Oracle ERP system, which went live on February 1, 2015. Once fully operational, this system will dramatically improve many of the department’s business processes and operational practices as it offers tighter inventory controls, County-approved inventory valuation methodology, and enhanced reporting capabilities which enable customers, suppliers,and employees access to more valuable information.

  • In FY15 the Cable Office worked with the Office of Legislative Information to support the fifth annual Youth Town Hall Meeting for students, held in the Council Office Building. For the first time, the Department inserted live Twitter comments and used Google Hangout to take questions from the Long Branch Library in Silver Spring; Councilmembers interacted with students and answered questions during the live broadcast. The program was available on cable TV, online, and on mobile devices.

  • Recognized by the White House and the U.S. Chief Technology Officer for the Innovation Program’s achievements in cyber physical systems and remote health sensing technology. The Program established the Safe Community Alert (SCALE) system as part of the Smart America Challenge organized by the White House Presidential Innovation Fellows and the National Institutes of Standards and Technology.

  • Launched a significant entrepreneurship and workforce development initiative involving the food industry. The kitchen incubator project is currently in the site selection phase and expects to move forward in 2015.

  • Hosted Innovation Week in March 2014. Innovation Week was an event packed full of workshops for County managers on topics ranging from open data to 3-D printing. These workshops focused on getting our Management Leadership Service up-to-speed on trends that will change the way we govern for years to come.

  • Expanded Executive Branch communications through a new half hour radio show broadcast on WOL 1450 AM, “Montgomery Mosaic,” and new cable television shows that feature the Police Chief; the “My Green Montgomery” environmental show; a show of special interest to African Americans, “Mosaic: An African American Perspective”; and several new Spanish language offerings a television version of the new “Montgomery Al Dia” Spanish language talk show which is done weekly on Spanish language radio, a Spanish version of “County Report This Week,” and “Perfiles” (or Profiles) which features interviews with Hispanic employees.

  • Provide more direct communication with residents through social media sites: YouTube; Facebook; and Twitter. Expanded the Twitter site to nearly 27,000 followers and expanded distribution lists for electronic publications such as “The Paperless Airplane” which reaches over 120,000 households.

  • Enhanced customer service for new community users through the launch of an online New User Education Training program in FY15 that can be completed using either a personal computer or mobile device. CUPF anticipates 1,100 community users will complete the on-line version versus the 701 new users completing the in-house instructor led training class in FY14.

  • Recognized by the Public Technology Institute (PTI) as a Tech Savvy County in 2014. Montgomery County is only one of four local governments in the nation and the only County in Maryland to be designated as a Tech Savvy jurisdiction during 2014.

  • Honored by PTI with the 2013-2014 Technology Solutions Award for the County’s “Bikeshare Station Site Identification and Property Verification” program.

  • Launch of a new Enterprise Resource Planning Division (ERPD) within the Department of Technology Services is planned for FY16. The ERPD will function as a long term and permanent sustaining organization to maintain and operate the County’s Core Business Systems (financials, human resources, procurement, and budgeting.)

  • Continued cybersecurity efforts across several areas, including an updated Employee IT Security Policy training program and completed an in depth assessment of the County’s IT environment.

  • Developed, deployed, and improved Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) Business Intelligence (BI) tools. Implemented ERP Purchasing (PO) Service Level Agreement (SLA) process and Compensation Work Bench module.

  • Developed the Open Data Implementation Plan as required by Bill 23-12, Administration – Open Data. The Implementation Plan contains an inventory of datasets in the County and a high level publication schedule for publication of each documented dataset. In developing the publication schedule, each dataset was evaluated and rated by the dataMontgomery Workgroup on factors relating to its publication value and alignment with the mission of the department.

  • Provided project management, development, application engineering, systems engineering, and quality assurance support for the Public Safety System Modernization (PSSM) program.

  • Developed and implemented several Integrated Justice Information System (IJIS) components and retired the use of the County’s legacy mainframe based CJIS system.

  • Implemented enhanced Cybersecurity measures for users of the County’s Virtual Private Network (VPN) system.

  • Prepared an implementation plan and legislation to establish a Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) program. PACE will provide financing to commercial property owners for energy efficiency and renewable energy improvements. Finance will assist lenders and property owners by collecting the annual loan repayment on the County’s property tax bill. This reduces the annual repayment cost for the property owner. It will provide greater security to lenders in terms of loan repayment, as well as potentially reducing interest costs for the borrower.

  • Conducted a claims management audit that returned an overall rating of 95 percent, the highest rating the program has achieved since the 1978 inception of the Self Insurance Program. This was achieved through the use of a continuous improvement model for developing processes and procedures to improve efficiency and effectiveness of claim handling.

Affordable Housing in an Inclusive Community...

  • Invest over $43.9 million for Affordable Housing including the Montgomery Housing Initiative (MHI) fund and utilize $17.0 million from the Affordable Housing Acquisition and Preservation CIP project. This increases dedicated funding and provides for renovation of distressed housing, acquisition and preservation of affordable housing units, creation of housing units for special needs residents, services to the “Building Neighborhoods to Call Home”and “Housing First” programs, and creation of mixed income housing. Since FY08, $658.7 million has been invested in support of affordable housing leveraging $924.5 million in non-County funding.

  • Continue to use resources from the MHI fund to support rental assistance programs of the Department of Housing and Community Affairs (DHCA), Health and Human Services (DHHS). and the Housing Opportunities Commission (HOC). A total of 1,800 households were assisted in FY15 and over 1,800 are projected in FY16.

  • Enhance code enforcement efforts to provide increased attention to single family rental properties to ensure safe and sanitary living conditions.

  • Continue to receive funding from Federal Grants (Community Development Block Grant (CDBG), the HOME Investment Partnership Grant (HOME), and the Emergency Solutions Grant (ESG)), which provide funding for affordable housing,housing rehabilitation, commercial revitalization, focused neighborhood assistance, public services, and homelessness prevention.

  • Undertake renovations at Progress Place (collaboration of the Departments of General Services, Health and Human Services, and Housing and Community Affairs), which includes the relocation of several Montgomery County supportive housing service providers to a new, consolidated location in Silver Spring. The relocation will furnish the providers with a new and improved space while integrating 21 units of supportive transitional housing within the location.

  • Continue to administer State and Federally funded Weatherization Assistance Programs which provide energy saving housing renovations for income eligible County residents.

  • In collaboration with the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, launched a rental housing study to identify the County’s rental housing needs and offer holistic and sustainable approaches to meet them.

  • Continue the comprehensive, data driven Focused Neighborhood Assistance (FNA) Program, which has received national recognition for its previous efforts in Cinnamon Woods. This year, the FNA program will continue its efforts related to struggling condominium communities and HOAs through intensive community outreach, board training, and common area improvements in one selected community. The FNA Program will also continue community and housing improvements in the McKendree neighborhood of Montgomery Village, as well as undertake a community planning and visioning process in the Wheaton North neighborhood.

  • Special Needs Housing received more than 6,200 requests for emergency assistance and provided more than 3,700 emergency assistance grants totaling $2.9 million to resolve housing and utility emergencies. In partnership with community homeless providers, it implemented a coordinated assessment system to identify, prioritize, and refer homeless residents most in need to permanent supportive housing. This process assures that available openings are filled quickly and reduces the time people spend in homelessness.

  • Kicked off the 100,000 Homes Campaign, a national effort to locate,identify, and house the most vulnerable homeless individuals and families in our community. Approved funding for two new permanent supportive housing programs to serve 30 medically vulnerable households.

  • Created an Interagency Commission on Homelessness to improve community-wide planning and oversee efforts to prevent and end homelessness in Montgomery County.

An Effective and Efficient Transportation Network...

  • Oversee an increasing road resurfacing program with lane miles addressed rising from 24 lane miles in FY14 to 145 lane miles in FY15. Performing road resurfacing in earlier years prevents the need for more costly road rehabilitation in later years, maximizing available resources in all years to maintain the roads.
  • Responded to and completed repair work for 6,439 pothole service requests within approximately 48 hours of notification. Requests were received through the MCDOT website, MC311 Service Requests, letters, email, and self patrols by work crews.
  • In FY16, expand the Bethesda Circulator route to Bradley Boulevard and Battery Lane connecting residents, visitors, and commuters to County parking garages, the Bethesda Metro, retail stores, restaurants, and local grocery stores – and will bring the service within walking distance of NIH and Walter Reed.
  • Starting in January 2015, expanded Silver Spring Van Go shuttle hours to Monday through Thursday 7a.m. to midnight, and Friday and Saturday 7a.m. to 2a.m.
  • Enhanced Call-n-Ride eligibility requirements to increase subsidies and reduce monthly copayments for 528 current participants. This has also increased the number of County residents eligible for the program.
  • Responded to 26 storm events totaling 43.6 inches of snow thus far in FY15.
  • Opened the Capital Crescent Garage (Public Parking Garage 31) in Bethesda at Woodmont and Bethesda Avenues in January 2015. This new state-of-the-art, 950 space public parking facility includes 60 foot clear spans and raised ceilings, a security system with video cameras and call stations, electric vehicle charging stations, and bicycle parking for easy access to the adjacent Capital Crescent Trail.
  • Broke ground on a new public/private partnership redevelopment project on the current site of Public Parking Lot 3 in the Fenton Street Village area of Silver Spring. Phase I of the project, now in construction, involves a mix of market rate and affordable housing and street front retail above a two level County-owned public parking garage. The project also involves a significantly sized area of green space as a public amenity.
  • Expand use of demand based parking rates to Silver Spring. This rate structure, now in use in Bethesda, aligns the most desirable parking spaces with the highest rate and allows customers to make an individual decision on cost versus convenience.
  • Parking Guidance Systems will continue to be rolled out to highly used facilities. Parking Guidance Systems display available parking spaces on signs at the entrance and exits to garages and transmit this data in real time to data.montgomery so that it can be used by commercial applications to help guide the public to available parking. Systems are currently operational in the Bethesda Avenue and Capital Crescent Garages in Bethesda and the Wayne Avenue and Town Square Garages in Silver Spring. The next garage scheduled for system installation is the Cameron Street Garage in Silver Spring.
  • To improve customer service, the payment system in the East West Highway Garage, under the NOAA Building, in Silver Spring will be converted from individual parking meters to a Pay On Foot system. Similar systems are now in use in Wayne Avenue and Town Square Garages in Silver Spring and the Bethesda Avenue and Capital Crescent Garages in Bethesda. The system eliminates the possibility of a ticket for an expired parking meter and offers the flexibility to pay only for the time parked with a credit card, debit card, or cash.
  • Completed biennial inspections of 99 bridges and renovations of 20 bridges.
  • Partnered with 30 schools and 21 libraries to sell Youth Cruiser Smartrip cards.

Children Prepared to Live and Learn...

  • Make a County contribution to MCPS of $1,540.8 million, including $33.2 million in carryover and $44.48 million of local contribution for State retirement. The County contribution meets the State Maintenance of Effort Law requirements.
  • Support MCPS’ programs through expenditures in other County departments, such as Health and Human Services (HHS), Public Libraries, Recreation, Community Use of Public Facilities, Environmental Protection, and Police, totaling $68.5 million in FY15 and $62.5 million for FY16.
  • Add funds to support the relocation of Children’s Resource Center to a lease space that meets programmatic needs.
  • Support a full-year operation of the Linkages to Learning Program at South Lake Elementary School.
  • Continue funding support for Saturday School Program through the George B. Thomas Learning Academy to serve the County’s most academically at-risk students.
  • Establish the Children’s Opportunity Fund jointly with Montgomery County Public Schools to support policy priorities related to addressing the social determinants that impact the achievement gap for vulnerable children and the barriers faced by their families.
  • During FY14, the Crisis Center provided behavioral assessment, referrals, and recommendations for follow-up treatment of 1,035 children and adolescents referred by Montgomery County Public Schools, a 97 percent increase over FY12 when 526 were served.
  • Served more than 3,020 children in FY14, including 254 new enrollees, through The Care for Kids program. Of these new patients, 150 were unaccompanied minor children.
  • Collaborated with Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) to implement the Federal Uninterrupted Scholars Act and Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act. This allows the sharing of child-specific data in order to make better decisions about a child’s placement, well-being, and transition goals. A training program, Endless Dreams, was also developed to increase awareness of general and educational needs of foster care children.
  • Positive Youth Development staff trained 260 school personnel to better understand and recognize students with trauma issues from various cultural backgrounds. Provided workshops to 300 parents on transformational healing which is a process that helps build protective factors to high risk activity.
  • The Community Action Agency’s Takoma-East Silver Spring Center (TESS) served 8,800 walk-in customers requesting social service, case management, and resource assistance. TESS initiated Summer Meals, serving up to 60 children daily, and provided access and outreach for nonprofit partners, including health insurance enrollment through the Affordable Health Care Act.
  • Enhanced the library materials collection and substantially increased the number of All-Children-Excel Technology Go! Kits;added Tumblebooks (pre-Kindergarten - elementary school age e-books) to the library materials collection.
  • Implemented All Children Excel (ACE) Technology Go! Kits at Aspen Hill, Gaithersburg, Noyes, Olney, Silver Spring, Twinbrook and White Oak library branches.
  • Integrated STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) elements into many pre-kindergarten programs.
  • Leveraged partnerships and grant funding to provide high quality programs for teens and seniors, including arts and creative programs for seniors, a Financial Literacy Boot Camp for teens, including technology and other classes at Studio-I Digital Media Lab at Long Branch and the Gaithersburg Computer Lab.
  • Implemented KID Museum (Kids International Discovery Museum) Agreement to a growing non-profit learning organization to refresh former training and book storage space at Davis library into a state of-the-art Makerspace, which will provide dedicated programming for library customers and provide valuable training experience for library staff at minimal cost to the County.
  • The Excel Beyond the Bell (EBB) program continues to thrive. In partnership with MCPS, the Collaboration Council, and numerous quality out of school time providers, EBB served seven middle schools during the FY15 school year. With grant funding from United Way and partnership with Identity Neelsville, EBB maintained five schools for summer extended learning programs.
  • Modelling a “one-stop shop” approach to lifelong learning at Gaithersburg Library. Customers can use library resources in combination with classes and programming from Gilchrist Center, Montgomery College, Literacy Council of Montgomery County, and Montgomery Coalition for Adult English Literacy to improve their lives along a full spectrum of needs, from basic language development to career advancement. All the involved partners supplement each other’s resources at the library site, making it convenient for customers to learn and grow.
  • Implemented the Summer Mobile Teen program as part of the Teen Works program. The Summer Mobile Teen program accompanies the Montgomery County Public Schools Summer Lunch program, providing activities for students who came for lunch, serving over 15,000 residents.
  • Expanded the TeenWorks Program through a partnership with Maryland Conservation Corps (MCC). This partnership program engages young adults in extensive natural resource management and park conservation projects. MCC provides members with opportunities for skill development and personal growth through a supportive, team-based environment, emphasizing the satisfaction of completing projects that benefit Maryland’s natural resources.

Healthy and Sustainable Communities...

  • Add funds to the Developmental Disability Supplement to increase the differential between the wage provided to direct service workers and the County’s minimum wage.

  • In 2014, the County Executive signed into law “Design for Life Montgomery” legislation to provide tax credits to builders and homeowners for including features in new and existing residential housing to improve accessibility for persons of all ages, including seniors and those with disabilities.

  • Expanded the Senior Nutrition Program’s congregate meals to the White Oak Community Recreation Center from three to five days per week, while the lunch program at the Mid-County Community Recreation Center more than doubled the number of meals served over the past year. In addition, the program distributed 781 Senior Farmer’s Market Coupon booklets worth $30 each this past summer.

  • Served 1,635 women in FY14 through the Maternity Partnership program. In FY15, a fourth service location was added, enhancing service accessibility and availability for patients in the northern part of the County.

  • In support of the 2010 Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) permit goals, the Department of Environmental Protection will continue to work with the Maryland Department of Environment (MDE) to develop goals for the County’s next MS4 permit.

  • In tax year 2013, the Community Action Agency’s Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Partnership prepared over 2,000 tax returns,helping families access more than $4 million in refunds, including $1.4 million in Earned Income and Child Tax Credits. The Maryland Creating Assets, Savings, and Hope Campaign recognized the County’s VITA partnership for contributing the highest number of volunteer hours among its coalition members.

Safe Street and Secure Neighborhoods...

  • Since 2007, all crime has dropped by 24 percent in the County, three times the decrease in all crime nationally during the same period.

  • Enhance public trust, increase accountability, and improve evidentiary capture of police events by initiating the use of body cameras on police patrol officers. Montgomery County will be one ofthe first large jurisdictions to equip the entire patrol force with this equipment.

  • Promote public safety by restoring School Resource Officers (SROs )at all public high schools in cooperation with allied police agencies.

  • Enhanced patrol staffing in Gaithersburg, Aspen Hill, and Germantown; and investigative capability with the addition of investigators in the 1st District (Rockville), 2nd District (Bethesda), and the 6th District (Gaithersburg).

  • OCP joined County Executive Isiah Leggett, Montgomery County Police, State’s Attorney’s Office, Maryland Home Improvement Commission, Department of Natural Resources, and neighboring police departments in a crackdown on unlicensed home improvement contractors. These unlicensed contractors typically victimize consumers, especially seniors.

  • Begin consolidation of the Emergency Communications Center to enhance public safety by improving emergency call taking and dispatch services. Consolidation under a single organization will result in greater efficiency and effectiveness in service delivery by: streamlining the call answering process and eliminating the need for call transfers; standardizing training, policies and procedures; decreasing administrative overhead and redundancy; and reducing operational overtime expenditures.

  • OCP hosted a well attended film screening with the Maryland Consumer Rights Coalition (MCRC). MCRC produced a documentary video, “Driven to Defraud,” that documents scams some car dealers use to abuse Maryland car purchasers.

  • Detention Services continued its linkage and professional development efforts with Montgomery College in the areas of adult education, workforce development, and reentry planning. The partnership with Montgomery College continues to expand focusing on areas of inmate personal growth and development at lower cost.

  • Beginning in FY15, Family Justice Center has increased domestic violence onsite counseling from three days a week to five days a week through collaboration with the Jewish Coalition Against Domestic Abuse and the House of Ruth.

  • The Family Justice Center, the Domestic Violence Coordinating Council, the Family Justice Center Foundation and Chesapeake Counseling have collaborated to create ISE (Identify, Support and Encourage), a training program for youth service providers who work with youth who have been exposed to domestic violence in the home.

  • Expanded the Coaching Boys into Men (CBIM) program to Montgomery Blair High School. This program educates young athletes to be respectful on and off the football field, and is currently working with the football team at Springbrook High School. This program complements the Choose Respect program formed by the Family Justice Center.

  • In FY15, created the Crimes Against Seniors and Vulnerable Adults Unit (CASVA) to aggressively prosecute crimes where these targeted populations are victims. The unit is comprised of experienced Assistant State’s Attorneys and investigative staff who handle cases of physical neglect and abuse as well as financial exploitation.

  • During the Spring 2013 semester, volunteers donated 9,000 hours of service to the Office of the State’s Attorney. In the Summer and Fall semesters, volunteers donated 25,200 hours of service to the Office. This equates to over 12 FTEs of donated service hours.

  • Enhance Truancy Court from ten middle schools to fifteen middle schools using an additional Program Coordinator and increasing the number of volunteer mentors.

  • Increase staffing levels at the Sandy Spring Fire Station 40 to improve response times beginning in January 2016. Enhanced service levels will include much needed Advanced Life Support (ALS) capabilities, via a paramedic engine company. This collaboration with the Sandy Spring Volunteer Fire Department empowers them to limit potential response failures through additional, diversified riding opportunities for volunteer personnel.

  • Montgomery County Fire and Rescue (MCFRS) was reaccredited by the Commission on Fire Accreditation International. First accredited in 2007, MCFRS is currently one of 186 agencies worldwide with this distinction and is the only internationally accredited fire and rescue department in Maryland and the Washington Metropolitan National Capital Region.

  • Implemented a multi-faceted program of High Performance CPR which tripled the save rate from nine percent to 30 percent. Personnel were intensively trained, and new feedback processes were implemented to ensure that this program was successful.

  • Opened new/relocated Wheaton Rescue Squad at Georgia and Arcola Avenues.

  • Pilot tested and implemented new EMS Technologies: (1) transport ventilators on three strategically placed medic units to help serve this specialty care population in two County nursing homes; (2)video laryngoscopes for every ALS unit in the County to assist paramedics with performing the life saving skill of endotracheal intubation and (3) Lucas II Automatic CPR devices for 21 strategically placed units to assist in CPR.

  • Implemented new version of emergency medical dispatch procedure at the 911 call center with revised questions and streamlined response plans.

  • Ongoing statistical analysis of call processing times resulting in continual improvements to the process.

  • Relocated Glenmont Station 18 operations to the former Wheaton Rescue Squad station while new Station 18 is being constructed at Georgia Avenue and Mason Street.

  • Achieved further progress on various MCFRS’ civilianization initiatives, which will eventually save millions of dollars annually. Civilianization of 18 code compliance positions is nearing completion; civilianization of all dispatch positions at the Emergency Communications Center is beginning with the training of prospective dispatchers; the hiring of a civilian in fleet will return a uniform position to the field; as will a civilian in the self contained breathing apparatus section.

  • Converted two Captain positions to civilian positions at the Public Safety Training Academy.

  • Transitioned Alert Montgomery to an upgraded system. Montgomery County has the highest number of users in the National Capital Region.

  • Provided continued management of Homeland Security grant funds in excess of $5,000,000 per year.

  • Provided continued management of the Hazmat Permitting Program including issuing 2,460 permits.

  • The Circuit Court opened the South Tower building on April 28,2014 adding 10 courtrooms, 8 hearings rooms, and office space for the Family Division, the Family Law Self Help Center, and the Juvenile Division.

  • The Court annually updates its web based performance dashboard that displays 10 nationally recognized trial court performance measures (CourTools) developed by the National Center for State Courts. In FY15, the Court presented data in support of the court employee satisfaction measure, which highlights results from the Court’s first annual survey of court employees. More information can be found at: http://www.montgomerycountymd.gov/circuitcourt/court/publications/publications.html

  • The Adult Drug Court commemorated its 10th Anniversary on November 12, 2014. Since the program’s inception, 148 participants have graduated. The Court will continue to support the mission of eliminating drug abuse, crime, the consequences of crime, thereby increasing public safety by leveraging new initiatives in the areas of education and life skills.

  • During the first half of FY15, the Court opened its newly renovated Jury Lounge, now located on the second floor of the North Tower. Other projects currently underway include construction of the Child Waiting Area in the South Tower and, in the North Tower, renovations to the Clerk of the Court’s office and the office space for the retired judges. These projects are expected to be completed before the end of the fiscal year.

  • The U.S. Census estimates that by 2040 one in five of the County’s residents will be 65 years or older (compared to one in ten in 2000). To meet the anticipated needs of this segment of the county’s population, the Court anticipates the continuation of its Adult Guardianship Grant program. This program is designed to help guardians successfully fulfill their responsibilities.

  • The Maryland Electronic Courts (MDEC) case management and electronic filing system was deployed in Fall 2014. The Court will continue to analyze the technical challenges associated with integrating this eventual statewide case management system with the functionality of its own case management system ,as well as its differentiated case management policies.

A Strong and Vibrant Economy...

  • Working with all relevant stakeholders, develop a proposal with accompanying legislation, to create an Economic Development Authority. This Authority will assume many of the current functions and responsibilities of the Department of Economic Development and have broad-based representation.

  • Create MC Squared, a new start-up business accelerator, to expand the County’s business incubator networks. This initiative provides early-stage companies with an intensive product-focused curriculum to accelerate their growth and leverage the region’s unique Federal assets.

  • Expand the existing MOVE Program to reduce vacant Class A and B office space in the County. Through the MOVE program, businesses new to the County or businesses creating their first shared office space in the County receive a one-time grant for relocation or build out assistance. The MOVE Program increases financial assistance from $4 to $8 per square foot, up to a maximum of 10,000 square feet, for any industry sector except retail and restaurant.

  • Expand the BUILD Program by selectively spurring the construction of Class A office spaces and hotels in the County to increase the number of construction jobs and the commercial tax base. Through this program, approved property owners receive from 25 to 50 percent of the additional real property taxes generated by the new development through an annual grant payment that last ten years.

  • In Fall 2014, design of the National Cybersecurity Center of Excellence (NCCoE) was completed and construction will begin in 2015. In partnership with the State of Maryland and the National Institute of Standards and Technology, the NCCoE will position the County to be the epicenter of the emerging and fast growing cybersecurity industry. Add funding in support of the marketing of the NCCoE establishment to help expand the County’s Business Innovation Network by developing the data analytics sector and continuing to support growth of the life science industry.

  • Commit resources within the Department of Permitting Services to continue and accelerate the streamlining of the development process.The resources will help the Department meet its commitment to complete the initial review and comment of Commercial Plan reviews within 30 days; continue the move to electronic plan review; reduce processing time for sediment control plans; and improve coordination both within and outside of County Government.

  • DPS has engaged in a comprehensive study of its fees. A significant outcome of the study is that the department will be moving away from a construction cost based fee for new commercial construction to a rate per square foot which more accurately reflects the necessary DPS staff work. This new approach is projected to yield a fee structure that is more equitable, predictable, and consistent with maintaining reserve policy. In FY15, DPS reduced the information technology surcharge fee by 50% and reduced fees for mid-rise woodframe construction. The FY16 budget is proposing a new permit fee structure that will result in materially lower permit fees across multiple charges for services.

  • Expanded, started up, or relocated 38 businesses to Montgomery County in FY14, due to the Department of Economic Development’s (DED) outreach efforts. These efforts will retain and create over 2,600 jobs, lease nearly 935,000 square feet of commercial space, and generate $160 million in capital investment within the next three to five years. Additionally, 38 start-up companies were created due to the efforts of the County’s partner organizations partially funded by DED, including Small Business and Technology Development Center, Latino Economic Development Center, and BioHealth Innovation, Inc.

  • Assisted over 14,000 job seekers and placed close to 7,000 workers in local jobs in FY14; and assisted more than 3,300 business officials through over 140 technical assistance events and trainings in FY14.

  • Hosted the National Federal Laboratory Consortium (FLC) Conference, for the first time in the Washington, DC area, advancing the County’s objective of linking the federal research institution with local entrepreneurs.

  • Kicked off The Farm Equipment Rental Program in September 2014 as a partnership between DED, Montgomery County Soil Conservation District, Montgomery County Farm Bureau, University of Maryland Extension, and private farmers to meet the needs of agricultural businesses.

Vital Living for All of Our Residents...

  • Open the new, five-story Silver Spring Library with innovative features that include a Technology Corral, expanded service hours,an Accessibility Resource Center, a Business Center, hand-crafted pre-Kindergarten learning furniture donated by the Friends of the Library Silver Spring Chapter, a Studio i Digital Media Lab and new Teen Space, Smart meeting rooms, a locally run Café, a future Purple Line transit stop, flexible space for programming or partnerships on the first two floors, 24-hour holds pick-up lockers, and two-hours of free parking.
  • Expanded Public Service Hours (PSH) by 106 hours per week to a total of 1,233 hours per week across all branches (an increase of 9.4 percent); with new Sunday hours at four branches; and the addition of weekday morning and evening hours at several branches.
  • In conjunction with the Jewish Council for the Aging (JCA), launched the Transportation Initiative in FY14 and in FY15, expanded the initiative. The initiative adds five days a week transportation to all five senior centers. Bus ridership and participation in center activities has increased at all locations.
  • Expanded e-resources, including e-magazines, planned improvements to library catalog searches with improved links to e-books, and addition of free on-line courses.
  • Maintain the current Adult Foster Care reimbursement rate to reduce the gap between the County and State subsidy for senior assisted living group homes.
  • Continue funding support for respite services to meet the needs of families with disabilities.
  • Re-instituted the popular senior mini-trip program. Each senior center and Active Adult Program now receives four trips per year to take seniors to local destinations of interest.
  • Continue supporting a therapist in Trauma Services to expand clinical service capacity in the Abused Persons Program and address waitlists for victims of domestic violence.
  • Continue providing nurse monitoring services to more than 2,000 senior and disabled clients receiving services through the State’s new Medicaid waiver program, Community First Choice.
  • Expanded World Language collections, adding an Amharic collection at Silver Spring branch and a Farsi collection at the Gaithersburg and Marilyn J. Praisner branches.
  • Re-opened Olney and Gaithersburg libraries with enhanced collections, new technologies, and enhanced layout and facility amenities, including a Gilchrist Center for Cultural Diversity for immigrants and newcomers, and the first in-library Café at the Gaithersburg branch.
  • Opened “Studio-i”, a new Digital Media Lab and electronic Makerspace at Long Branch Library.
  • Implemented many new library technologies, including: digital signage, interactive (touch screen) catalog screens, all-in-one format PCs, enhanced self-checkout machines, E-book Discovery Stations, DVD self-checkout dispensers, lending e-readers, e-magazine tablets for in-library browsing, Early Learning Workstations, laptops for in library use, and new Wi-Fi infrastructure.
  • Implementing ActiveNet software to improve customer service, allowing a one-stop access location to register for Montgomery County Parks, Community Use of Public Facilities, and Recreation programs.
  • Redesigned the website and the public libraries’ social media offerings, launching MCPL’s Pinterest and Instagram social media pages.
  • Received State matching grants totaling $387,000 in FY15 for MCPL’s innovative Library Refresh program, with $700,000 in additional aid proposed for FY16 by Maryland’s Governor.
  • Used innovation in our partnerships to connect customers with library and other lifelong learning services, including: a new Montgomery College Community Engagement Center and class series at Gaithersburg branch; Gilchrist Centers for New Americans at Gaithersburg and Wheaton branches; the KID Museum at Davis; and partnerships with Ghandi-Brigade, My Montgomery Media, and the County’s Cable and Broadband services Office to support Digital Media Lab and Teen Advisory Group content creation.
  • Expanded staff training opportunities with online training and staff-led webinars on hot topics such as the new Health Care law.
  • Supported Creative Afternoons Program offered by the department’s Therapeutics unit, providing recreational activities and family events for profoundly disabled persons affiliated with the Stephen Knolls School and Longview School.
  • Extended operating hours at three of the five senior centers, providing access to programs and activities for an additional two to eight hours per week.
  • Re-opened the Plum Gar Community Center with senior and youth programming such as Senior Neighborhoods, Club Rec, Club Friday,and Summer Fun Centers, along with a host of activities, special events, and sporting events for the community.
  • Re-opened the Scotland Community Center. Programming includes Club Friday, Summer Fun Centers, and a host of activities, special events, and sporting events for the community.
  • Recommended against the changes to the WSSC fee structure proposed by the Commission for FY16 due to the belief that the proposed changes are contrary to the Commission’s water conservation goals and also will disproportionately impact the consumers with the lowest water usage who are often those with the lowest income.

Funding The Budget...

  • Recommend a total County budget from all sources of $5,067,834,958, which is $72.1 million, or 1.4 percent, more than the FY15 budget.
  • Recommend tax-supported funding for Montgomery County Government of $1,405,714,273 (excluding Retiree Health Insurance), an increase of 1.1 percent.
  • Funding for Montgomery College’s tax-supported programs increases by $4.0 million, a 1.6 percent increase compared to FY15. County funding for Montgomery College is recommended to increase by $3 million or 2.6 percent. Over the last two years, the County contribution to the College will have increased by twenty percent.
  • Funding for MCPS will increase by $30.7 million, a 1.4 percent increase from FY15. Including funds made available through the Retiree Health Benefits Trust, the budget funds 97.6 percent of the Board of Education’s tax-supported request.
  • Tax-supported funding for the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission (M-NCPPC) increases by $1.8 million or 1.5 percent from FY15.
  • Recommend a 4.0% rate decrease in solid waste charges across the single-family, multi-family, and non residential sectors, thereby providing relief to ratepayers in these sectors.
  • Recommend property taxes at the Charter limit with a $692 homeowner’s property tax credit to support a progressive property tax structure.
  • Fund WSSC’s FY16 operating and capital budgets with a 6.0 percent rate increase. This rate increase is above the rate assumed by WSSC. However, it does not assume the new fee structure proposed by WSSC, which is regressive and does not promote water conservation.
  • Promote existing mechanisms for senior citizens and those on limited incomes to assist them as needed with property tax increases, such as the Senior Tax Credit program that benefits eligible residents who are at least 70 years of age. This credit is calculated as 25 percent of the combined State Homeowners’ Tax Credit and County Supplement.
  • Retains the energy tax at the level approved by the Council for FY15, preserving a broad-based revenue source that includes federal institutions located in the County.

The County Executive’s Initiatives to Build Accountability for Results

The Montgomery County Results

“However beautiful the strategy, you should occasionally look at the results.”
Winston Churchill

Following his election, County Executive Isiah Leggett asked a group of 150 residents representing diverse interests and cultures to identify the qualities of life in Montgomery County that matter most. They identified what are now called the Montgomery County Results, also known as Montgomery County priority objectives:

  • A Responsive and Accountable County Government
  • Affordable Housing in an Inclusive Community
  • An Effective and Efficient Transportation Network
  • Children Prepared to Live and Learn
  • Healthy and Sustainable Communities
  • Safe Streets and Secure Neighborhoods
  • A Strong and Vibrant Economy
  • Vital Living for All of Our Residents

Building a Culture of Accountability for Results

The County Executive believes that local government can – and must – continually strive to do a better job in its use of finite public resources to help achieve and sustain the Montgomery County Results. However, to achieve this goal the County Executive realized that a culture change was required. To establish and maintain a results-based culture, the County Executive, therefore implemented the following initiatives. These initiatives work together in a coordinated fashion to use data and objective measures to improve performance and the use of all County resources.

  • Results-Based Budgeting

At the direction of the County Executive, the Office of Management and Budget, CountyStat, and County operating departments, realigned the County’s budget process to focus on results rather than annual, incremental changes. Results-Based Budgeting ensures resource allocation based on County priority objectives to make government more responsive, programs and initiatives are operating effectively and efficiently, and tax dollars are spent wisely through the use of performance data as a primary basis for review and analysis of budgetary requests. The fiscal year (FY) 2009 Operating Budget, as a first step, introduced Department Headline Performance Measures, which are described below. Beginning in the FY10 budget, the Headline Measures were supplemented by the inclusion of program level measures. Beginning in FY11, operating budgets were systematically reviewed in multi-departmental groups. Group reviews were designed to ensure the interrelationship and risk of proposals for reductions or increments in each department were fully evaluated and collaboratively presented to the County Executive. When fully implemented, Results-Based Budgeting will:

  • Rely on historical and projected performance data and other reliable and relevant evidentiary data to justify budgetary allocations through the demonstration of performance results;

  • Document the “return on investment” expected from budget expenditures by assessing the impact of those expenditures on the customers of County services (“customer results”), the quality of life in Montgomery County, and the Montgomery County Results;

  • Enhance opportunities for cross departmental/agency coordination and resource allocation decisions, since the corresponding impact of resource changes on performance can be evaluated in a timely and objective manner;

  • Use data systematically and transparently to drive the decision-making processes by which finite resources are allocated to achieve both customer results and the Montgomery County Results;

  • Provide a better basis for decision making and administration of annual budgets, including additional investments or budgetary reductions, since these decisions would be based on alignment with priority objectives and performance data. This includes changes of the use of base funding if such changes will improve results, as opposed to limiting such decisions to only new or incremental funding;

  • Routinely seek improvements to productivity and no-cost or low-cost solutions to problems; and

  • Be used for the annual budget development and review process, as well as any mid-year decisions.

Moving to a results-based accountability system is a work in progress requiring a continual evolution in the County’s corporate culture and internal systems and processes to focus management and staff efforts on improving performance and achieving the County’s priority objectives.

  • CountyStat

CountyStat is a component of the County’s results-based accountability system, and a mechanism for performance management in Montgomery County government. Its goal is to improve government performance through greater accountability and better transparency into County challenges and successes, thereby, moving the County forward towards a culture of “managing for results” and a more effective and efficient County government. CountyStat is guided by four simple principles: require data-driven performance; promote strategic governance; increase government transparency; and foster a culture of accountability. CountyStat meetings, led by the Chief Administrative Officer, are held on a routine basis as a tool to examine the results of departments’ activities and make continual adjustments in the direction of programs in order to achieve the objectives.

CountyStat provides an array of facilitation and analytic support services not always realized through a formal CountyStat meeting. These services allow the County government to make informed decisions based on rigorous analysis. CountyStat staff focuses on strategic-level decision-making processes that lead to systemic change. This work includes, but is not limited to, consultation on departmental strategic planning, cost benefit analysis, program evaluation, quantitative and qualitative investigative studies and extensive survey development, implementation and analysis.

CountyStat manages the following results-based accountability tools:

  • Department Headline Performance Measures & Departmental Performance Plans

The County Executive directed department directors to focus their management on the achievement of “customer results.” As a first step, each department identified, not just their customers and the services they deliver to those customers but, most importantly, the outcomes they hope to achieve for those customers.

Departments then identified “Department Headline Performance Measures,” data to gauge: (1) the extent to which the desired results are being achieved, and (2) the efficiency of each department in achieving its results. Headline measures do not attempt to measure all the work performed by the Departments do; instead they focus on the core missions of departments and, with a small set of outcome measures, are used to monitor department performance.

In addition to the Headline Measures, all County departments developed Department Performance Plans. Each Plan begins with the Department Headline Performance Measures, gauging how well customer results are being achieved, as well as the department’s operational efficiency. Then the Performance Plan provides a succinct analysis and an action plan, including a budget, for improving performance – as measured by the trend lines of the Department Headline Performance Measures. These documents are used by Departments as strategic planning devices and by the County Executive to hold Department Directors accountable for outcome results.

  • Montgomery County Performance Measurement Dashboard

CountyStat created an online-accessible performance reporting dashboard, which includes all departments' Headline Performance Measures. This dashboard, located on the County's website at www.montgomerycountymd.gov/countystat, serves as a valuable tool for policymakers and residents enabling them to monitor County performance over time to ensure the needs and priorities of residents are consistently met by County policies. It is a key component of the County Executive's goal of increasing governmental transparency.

  • openMontgomery

In 2012, the County launched the openMontgomery program - the latest phase in the County’s open government program to promote even greater transparency and accessibility than previously achieved with CountyStat, MC311, and the County’s improved, mobile-enabled web portal. The openMontgomery program, including the accompanying Montgomery County Digital Government Strategy document, is acclaimed as the first of its kind among local governments. openMontgomery (http://montgomerycountymd.gov/open) is comprised of four pillar platforms:

  • dataMontgomery (http://data.montgomerycountymd.gov) provides a centralized portal for users to access County government data in consumable formats. dataMontgomery provides the public with an opportunity to review and analyze raw data and use it for a variety of purposes, including building custom and mobile applications and connecting them to County government services. These offerings benefit County residents, and facilitate economic activity and vibrant communities. Datasets published include: the FY14 Operating Budget, Food Inspection Results, Employee Salaries, MC311 Service Requests, Residential and Commercial Building Permits, Spending Disclosure, Contracts, Real Employee Tuition Assistance, Reported Sanitary Sewer Overflows, Cable Complaints and Inspections, Election Polling Places Maps (including Early Voting), and maps for all public Schools, libraries and Health and Human Services facilities. dataMontgomery is expected to reduce the need for the number of Freedom of Information Act requests, which can be expensive for both the County government and the requesting entity.

  • engageMontgomery (http://engage.montgomerycountymd.gov) provides the public another way to participate in open government. It provides on-line channels and forums where the public can offer ideas and feedback, voice concerns, and participate in online discussions with County government on any number of concurrent subjects. The Executive Branch utilized engageMontgomery to consult with the public on the FY15 and FY16 budget formulation. Other topics included transportation and the environment.

  • mobileMontgomery (http://montgomerycountymd.gov/open/mobile.html) presents the County’s web sites and applications (apps) on mobile devices (e.g., tablets, Smartphones) for use anytime and anywhere. Using these services, the public can access information (some in real time) about the budget, emergencies, services (e.g., bus arrivals, snow/debris removal, etc.) and through the mobile MC311 system can make non-emergency service requests, receiving status and notifications.

  • accessMontgomery (http://montgomerycountymd.gov/open/access.html) provides direct on-line access to critical county information and publications related to the budget, County government performance, including MC311, CountyStat, internal audits, Inspector General audits, and spending disclosures. Also, accessMontgomery contains information about the County’s contracts, open solicitations, and locations where the County offers free Wi-Fi. The County implemented on-line tools to measure customer satisfaction and web-portal activity. The adjustments resulting from these measurements have improved customer satisfaction with constituents by over 15 percent.

The four platforms work together to open the County’s data sets in consumable formats; consult the public on topics of importance to them; serve County services on Smartphones and other mobile devices in 72 languages; and provide access to County documents and reports not previously available. The FY16 budget funds further expansion of the openMontgomery program to improve customer services.

  • Open Budget

In July 2014, the County launched Open Budget (http://www.montgomerycountymd.gov/openbudget) – two new innovative and powerful online systems representing the County’s Budget; followed by spending Montgomery in January 2015.

  • Open Data Budget Publication (https://reports.data.montgomerycountymd.gov/omb). The first is a comprehensive Online Publication of the Budget that leverages the same data that isplaced on the Montgomery County’s Open Data platform, dataMontgomery. No longer bound by the limitations of a paper-based publication, this new online publication brings a dramatically improved experience for the users of the budget document both inside and outside County Government. The new publication includes:
  • Interactive charts, tables, maps and videos
  • A Custom Google Search Engine
  • Archiving Previous Years’ Data / Content
  • Unlimited Sharing/Discovery of data, tables and visualizations
  • Mobility (works on Smartphones, tablets and desktops)
  • American with Disabilities Act (ADA) Compliance
  • Instantly translatable into 90+ languages
  • Printable (individual sections, or entire book)
  • Robust Help section with video tutorials
  • budgetMongtomery (http://budget.data.montgomerycountymd.gov/). budgetMongtomery provides users with a way to understand how the budget is structured. It includes rich content such as charts, graphs and maps to view the budget from different levels, such as how much is budgeted for Services, Departments, Programs and the Capital Improvement Programs. It also allows users to convert the graphs to table view and download the raw data.
  • Montgomery County Indicators Project

CountyStat worked with Departmental, Agency, and community stakeholders to develop a set of indicators that represent a high-level barometer of County performance and reflect the quality-of-life in Montgomery County, benchmarked against a regional and national grouping of comparable jurisdictions. This is an additional data tool for the County, as it assesses its progress towards achieving its priority objectives.

To connect all of these various performance management and data driven decision-making tools, CountyStat mapped the interrelationships between the priority objectives, County indicators and related benchmarking, departmental headline performance measures, and results-based budgeting. All of these tools work together to assist County government in its effort to create an environment of transparency and accountability.

  • Focusing on Customer Results

The County Executive has launched several initiatives, in addition to Results-Based Budgeting, focused on improving “customer results,” including:

  • MC311/Constituent Relationships Management System

The deployment of the County’s nationally-recognized 311 one-stop, non-emergency phone and online system has represented a significant leap in responsiveness to our residents. In the three and a half years since the June 2010 launch of MC311, over 2.5 million requests have been handled. In 2012, the County expanded MC311’s hours by two hours to 7 PM Monday through Friday, in order to better serve working families and commuters.

The MC311 web portal (www.MC311.com) is available 24/7 to obtain information and to create service requests for County Government programs. On average, over 41,000 customers visit the web portal each month.

The CRM system offers residents a single point of contact for telephone and online inquiries and complaints and is an important tool to assist the County in making resource allocation decisions and tracking department responsiveness

  • Enterprise Resources Planning System

The County is modernizing its Core Business Systems to improve efficiency, effectiveness, and responsiveness. The Enterprise Resource Planning system (ERP) provides a significant upgrade to the County’s financial, procurement, human resources, and budgeting systems, streamline business processes, and produce enhanced reports for data-driven decision making – all key to improving customer results. In FY11, the County successfully implemented the financial, procurement, and human resource systems on-time and within budget. In FY12, the County effectively implemented PeopleSoft Retiree Pension, Oracle Compensation Workbench, Inventory, Work Orders, iExpense, iSupplier, iReceivable, and Advanced Collection. In FY13, the County successfully implemented Hyperion Operating and Capital Budgeting, Performance Management, Learning Management,Identity Management, Enterprise Reporting, and ZyImage. In FY14, the County successfully implemented Oracle Compensation Workbench (CWB) and Tax Assessment. During FY15, the County is implementing Warehouse and Order Management, Property Management, Polices Escrow Process and ActiveNet.

  • Decision Making that is Transparent and Driven by Data

In addition to focusing on customer results, the County Executive is committed to decision making that is both transparent and data-driven. Results-Based Budgeting fundamentally embodies the County Executive’s commitment to these values. Other initiatives that embody these values include:

  • Town Hall Meetings and Budget Forums

Starting in January 2007, the County Executive has held “Town Hall” Meetings across the County and online. The Town Hall Meetings provide a forum for free and candid dialogue. The County Executive also hosted a series of Budget Forums to seek input from residents on operating and capital budget priorities for the FY08-FY15 budgets. The total number of Town Hall and Budget Forums held by County Executive Leggett to date is over 45. In addition, online chats have provided monthly opportunities for direct input to the County Executive. As a further commitment to free and candid dialogue, a virtual Town Hall environment is provided by the engageMontgomery program discussed above.

  • Results-Based Accountability Successes

The Departmental performance plans, Headline Performance Measures, Program Performance measures, and high-level indicators of County performance and quality of life mentioned above, as well as internal training and budgeting process changes, serve as a base to further develop a results-oriented culture. CountyStat and the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) work together to ensure that the data mined by CountyStat is used in making budget decisions. Additionally, CountyStat responds to OMB’s need for data and information. New data available from the MC311 customer service system has opened up new avenues for data-driven customer responsiveness, including:

  • Multi-Department Review of Budget Proposals

After the departments submitted their budgets, the County’s Chief Administrative Officer and the OMB Director established five high-level working groups known as “clusters” that consisted of the directors of departments (or their designee) with related functions. The five clusters were organized based on current cross-cutting issues affecting multiple departments, including:

  • Collective Bargaining
  • Maintenance of the County’s Buildings
  • Positive Youth Development
  • Seniors
  • Worker’s Compensation

The goal of these clusters – which represented a more collaborative approach to budgeting in the County – was to review existing programs and policies within the County and determine if there were enhancements or efficiencies which could be made across the County to strengthen services provided to constituents. The conclusions and recommendations of the clusters were presented to the County Executive and Chief Administrative Officer and used by them in making their final decisions on the budget.

  • Rewarding Excellence Program

The Rewarding Excellence Bonus Incentive Award Program is designed to encourage and promote new, innovative ideas, concepts, and strategies for cost effective delivery of County services and products. The program rewards bargaining unit employees, general salary schedule employees, and first-line supervisors for sustainable implemented recommendations that improve efficiency, increase productivity, reduce costs, streamline operations, and enhance customer satisfaction. When cost savings are realized, employees receive a portion of the cost savings in the form of a bonus on a 50/50 basis for the first year. Thereafter, the County retains the savings. This program helps achieve one of the County’s key goals – to make County government more responsive and accountable.