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& SPOOKYBUSINESS The Gazette Reluctant horror film host to haunt AFI Silver festival. B-7 SILVER SPRING | TAKOMA PARK | BURTONSVILLE DAILY UPDATES ONLINE Wednesday, October 9, 2013 25 cents County casts spell on haunted display n Some neighbors cry ‘boo’ BY ALINE BARROS STAFF WRITER There are goblins, an altar full of vampires and a zombie exhibit, but what supporters of the Haunted Garden in Silver Spring fear most is the witch hunt they believe is happening to their neighbor. Donna Kerr goes all out decorating her yard for Halloween. But a temporary restraining order signed by Montgomery County District Court Judge Patricia Mitchell Oct. 4 has put her plans in purgatory. Neighbors to her 9215 Worth Ave. home worry narrow roads in their Seven Oaks Evanswood community won’t be able to handle the thousands of visitors Kerr expects to come view her free display. A hearing in Montgomery County District Court is scheduled for Oct. 15 to see if the order should be lifted or the event should go on as scheduled. The Haunted Garden was expected to open to the public Oct. 19. “Halloween for me is one of my favorite childhood memories. Standing in line going to the haunted houses in the neighborhood, and it was a really good time,” Kerr said. “Kids just enjoyed so much. It is just so great to see kids coming with their families.” Supporters of the event said the restraining order is a “bit of a witch hunt,” and at this point Kerr is being “bullied.” “I wish that people against would spend time doing something constructive,” said Jennifer Locke, a neighbor who lives across the street from Kerr. Amy Cress’ backyard is right See HAUNTED, Page A-14 DAN GROSS/THE GAZETTE Mark Gabriele (left) and his wife Beth Edgerton, furloughed federal workers from Bethesda, enjoy lunch together at Jaleo in Bethesda. “Last week felt bizarre, and this week you feel guillty,” Edgerton said. She noted that the “work doesn’t go away” and that they will have to catch up after the furlough ends. Mendoza challenges Seamens in Takoma Park’s Ward 4 race Thousands remain idled n BY Walter Reed employees return to work; Navy scrubs birthday concert INSIDE: KATE S. ALEXANDER STAFF WRITER Employees at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda went back to work Monday, despite the lingering federal government shutdown. The Department of Defense, under the direction of Secretary Chuck Hagel, eliminated furloughs for employees whose responsibilities contribute to the morale, well-being, capabilities and readiness of service members, based on a legal interpretation of the Pay Our Military Act, Hagel said in a statement Saturday. However, the law does not allow for a blanket recall of all Defense Department employees, Hagel said in the statement. Walter Reed ordered all general schedule employees back to work Monday at their regularly scheduled times, according to the hospital. n President Obama talks shutdown at Rockville construction firm. A-15 Still, thousands of federal workers remain out of work, as do federal contractors. Bethesda defense giant Lockheed Martin, one of Montgomery County’s largest employers, started furloughing about 2,400 employees companywide on Monday because of the political standoff. The number of sidelined employees was 600 fewer than what Lockheed officials thought on Friday. After Hagel said Saturday that most of the roughly 400,000 civilian employees in that department had been deemed essential for national security, Lockheed officials decided to reduce the number of furloughs. Other council members, mayor running unopposed n Most of those affected work in civilian programs in the Washington region, said Gordon Johndroe, a Lockheed spokesman. Since the first day of the shutdown on Oct. 1, Maryland has had 16,078 requests for federal unemployment benefits, Maureen O’Connor, spokeswoman for the Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation said Monday. Typically, the state sees about 2,500 to 3,500 applications a year from federal workers, but on the first day of the shutdown alone, it received nearly 4,000 applications, she said. Defense employees might be headed back to work, but the Navy Band is not performing. The band canceled its birthday concert scheduled for Wednesday at the Music Hall at Strathmore in North Bethesda BY SARAH SCULLY STAFF WRITER Only one Takoma Park City Council member will have to fight to keep his seat this year, against an opponent who has tried to take the seat in the past. Councilmember Terry J. Seamens of Ward 4 will run against Eric Mendoza in Takoma Park’s November elections. Both were selected during the Nominating Caucus on Oct. 2 to run for the two-year term. In 2009 and 2011 Mendoza ran against Seamens for Ward 4 as a write-in candidate. In 2009 Mendoza’s nomination was not See IDLED, Page A-15 valid because the person who seconded his nomination was not a resident of Ward 4. His 2011 nomination was seconded by a resident who was not a registered voter, and so his name was not placed on the ballot. Seamens won in 2009 and 2011. This is the first time Mendoza’s name will appear on the ballot. “I think it’s healthy for the community to have contested races,” Seamens said. “It gives people a chance to talk about issues, give different ideas on issues.” Running opposed makes campaigning more important, he said. “It means that I have to be much more diligent in campaigning and getting out and talking to voters.” See RACE, Page A-14 Cities, towns upgrade sites to provide more services Governments take different Digital approaches to using the Web overnment n Part two in a two-part series ONLINE EXTRAS n Data mining has both positive and negative sides n Trends and statistics for municipal governments’ and county entities’ websites. BY SYLVIA CARIGNAN AND ELIZABETH WAIBEL STAFF WRITERS Early next year, the city of Gaithersburg plans to roll out a new website with better search capabilities and a more user-friendly design. “We’re switching over to a services-based model,” said Andrew Barnes, a programmer for Gaithersburg’s website, which currently presents information sorted by departments. The “modern-day look and feel” of the new site will make it easier for residents and business owners to access basic information and services, such as finding out how to apply for a permit or get a recycling bin. With the contractor’s redesign, Gaithersburg joins local governments nationwide trying to meet the demand of higher Web use NEWS SPORTS Northwood High “courtroom” tackles Zimmerman trial. Paint Branch has a new stadium, weight room, one of the county’s top offenses and an undefeated record. TAKING ON A TOUGH CASE A-4 NEW LOOKS GOOD B-1 while dealing with dwindling resources. “Some see technology as a way to extend services at a lower cost through their websites, while others view it as a cost center that could be cut,” said Todd Sander, executive director for the California-based Center for Digital Government. Gaithersburg, Rockville and Takoma Park are among the Montgomery communities trying to provide See SERVICES, Page A-19 Automotive Calendar Celebrations Classified Community News Entertainment Opinion School News Sports Please RECYCLE TOM FEDOR/THE GAZETTE Kyung Lee is Web content manager for Montgomery County’s Office of Public Information. B-17 A-2 A17 B-13 A-4 B-7 A-18 A-16 B-1 Check out our Services Directory ADVERTISING INSIDE B SECTION 1906633

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