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& SILVER ANNIVERSARY Theater marks 75th with free showing of first movie. A-11 The Gazette DAMASCUS | CLARKSBURG DAILY UPDATES ONLINE Wegmans nearing opening Wednesday, September 11, 2013 25 cents Battle over future of Clarksburg heats up Slippin’ and a-slidin’ Germantown store will be grocery chain’s first in Montgomery County n BY KEVIN JAMES SHAY STAFF WRITER With less than five days before Wegmans opens its first Montgomery County grocery store, Kevin Grenzig took a glance around at fellow employees preparing for Sunday morning. “This is going really smoothly,” said Grenzig, the executive chef of the Germantown store on Seneca Meadows, who has helped open several Maryland Wegmans branches. “By now, we’re usually scrambling to get things done, but I don’t see a lot of that here.” Employees have been preparing for opening day for months. The development process began some four years ago, after Wegmans found a parcel within walking distance of the 150,000-square-foot WalMart in Germantown. Its latest 123,000-square-foot store is set to open at 7 a.m. Sunday. Such an opening can draw a large crowd. When the 130,000-square-foot Frederick store opened on a Sunday morning in 2011, people started lining n Planning Board wrestles with competing claims BY VIRGINIA TERHUNE STAFF WRITER Developers and environmentalists butted heads Tuesday night in an ongoing battle to win support from the county Planning Board for their respective agendas in the growing Clarksburg-Boyds area. More than 30 people spoke for or against development projects during the four-hour hearing in Silver Spring. At issue is how much development to allow in the Ten Mile Creek watershed, which covers parts of Boyds and Clarksburg, and balancing the needs of a growing population there with the needs of an environmentally protected watershed. The watershed, most of which is west of Interstate 270, drains into Little Seneca Lake, an emergency drinking water reservoir for the Washington, D.C., region. Not everyone who signed up had a chance to speak during the public hearing, so the board said it would hear those people at its next meeting, scheduled for Thursday. See CLARKSBURG, Page A-10 School system studies rules on County program discourages panhandling teacher moves See WEGMANS, Page A-9 n RAPHAEL TALISMAN/FOR THE GAZETTE Lilly Luther, 6 (front) and her friend Caitlyn Brown, 5, both of Damascus, slide down the front of a combine at the Damascus Community Fair on Saturday morning. See story, Page A-3. Instead, campaign seeks to increase aid to groups that help poor BY RYAN MARSHALL STAFF WRITER Richard Willis strolled up and down the thin median strip in Bethesda, following the ebb and flow of traffic as the lights changed. Monday was one of the first days Willis had come to the intersection of Democracy Boulevard and Old Georgetown Road in months, but he said he’s been coming to the area off and on for nearly 10 years. His small cardboard sign said he needed money for prescriptions, but Willis said he was actually trying to raise money to stay at a motel because there was no room in the homeless shelter where he had been staying. Drivers’ reaction to his presence is mostly good, although occasionally someone will tell him to get a job, Willis said. He said sometimes people will bring him a soda or a sandwich. Other times, a driver will say they are on their way to the grocery store across the street, and they’ll bring him something on the way back. In the winter, people will bring gloves, hats or an umbrella if it’s raining, he said. Earlier Monday morning in Wheaton, NEWS TRASH TRUCK HITS STRIKER Picketers continue action over claims of intimidation by management. A-4 TOM FEDOR/THE GAZETTE Richard Willis, who is currently homeless, panhandles at the corner of Old Georgetown Road and Democracy Boulevard in Bethesda on Monday. Montgomery County Executive Isiah Leggett (D), County Councilman George Leventhal and other officials announced an initiative to discourage drivers and other county residents from giving money to panhandlers such as Willis and instead direct their money toward county programs that work with the poor and homeless. “We want people to give. We don’t want people to give to panhandlers,” Leventhal said at a press conference. People who want to help panhandlers can text SHARE to the number 80077 to donate $5 to the Community Foundation of Montgomery County, which helps coordinate charitable giving in the county. Kim Ball, administrator of homeless services for the county’s Department of Health and Human Services, said her department goes out to try and interview panhandlers. Some agree and some refuse, and others just take the information the workers provide, Ball said. Panhandling is a complex, complicated issue, said Susan Sinclair-Smith, executive director of the Montgomery County Coalition for the Homeless, who spoke at the press conference. Montgomery County’s affluence, with a median household income listed by the U.S. Census Bureau of $95,660 from 2007-2011, adds to the problem. “I think the disparities between rich and poor are even more stark here,” Sinclair-Smith said. Most people feel compassion and a desire to help when they see someone struggling, she said. But giving the person cash isn’t really the best way to help him; a county service might When a teacher has been accused of inappropriate behavior with a student, that teacher could wind up in a new school. Montgomery County Public Schools is considering new rules that would make such reassignments less likely in cases of “a sexual nature,” said chief operating officer Larry Bowers. The school system is examining its policy for reassigning teachers and other employees as it works to improve its The latest education news in ability to track incidents and affecting Montgomery County of employee behavior, he said. The school system recently studied several cases involving employees who engaged in inappropriate behavior with students over extended periods of time, leading the school system to make changes to its tracking system for reports on such alleged behavior, according to school system See PANHANDLING, Page A-9 See MOVES, Page A-10 SPORTS A DIFFERENT TYPE OF PRESSURE Tennis players face a unique situation when wearing their school’s colors. B-1 Automotive Calendar Celebrations Classified Community News Entertainment Opinion School News Sports Please RECYCLE B-13 A-2 B-7 B-9 A-4 A-11 A-8 B-6 B-1 Reassignment after accusations of sexual misconduct could be rare n BY LINDSAY A. POWERS STAFF WRITER SPECIAL SECTION MONTGOMERY HOSPICE Learn how Montgomery Hospice can help you and your loved ones, plus get advice on coping with grief. ADVERTISING SUPPLEMENT 1906618

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