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One Hyattsville resident gets a unique proposal from her fiance ... with pennies. PAGE 3

The variety of cultural programs at the Smithsonian Folklife Festival wouldn’t be possible without a core group of Hyattsville residents. PAGE 9

Nevilla Ottley, founder of Ottley Music School, comes from a long line of musicians. PAGE 6

Library to close on Sundays by Susie Currie Starting July 4, all branches of the Prince George’s County Memorial Library System will be closed on Sundays due to a $1.3 million drop in state and county funding. Kathleen Teaze, director of the library system, said that its budget has been cut by about $4 million since 2007. In the fiscal year that started this month, she said, “we’re getting $1 million less from the county and $300,000 less from the state.” She estimated that the cut in state funding is equivalent to what it would cost to keep the Sunday hours. It’s the latest round of cutbacks that began in October, when Hyattsville became one of three branches — down from seven — to remain open on Sundays. Reduced hours throughout the system meant that some locations lost up to 9 hours a week; Hyattsville lost three when it began closing at 6 p.m. on Thursdays. More recently, the Adelphi Road branch closed its lower-level circulation desk and installed two new automated checkout machines. For some visitors, these changes translated into a decline in service in what is one of the busiest libraries in the system,

Hyattsville Life & Times PO Box 132 Hyattsville, MD 20781

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Hyattsville Life&Times

Vol. 7 No. 7

Hyattsville’s Community Newspaper

July 2010

HAPPY CAMPERS photo by valerie russell The cityʼs new summer day camp program, which started June 21, offers children ages 3 to 13 a full day of fun and friends.

Council reverses hiring decision by Paula Minaert At a time when nearly half the city’s department-head positions are open, the city council is rethinking how to fill them. Three out of seven directorlevel jobs, which require contract approval by the council, are or are soon to be empty: treasurer, director of recreation and the arts, and city administrator. The controller position, which reports to the treasurer, is also open. Soon after City Administrator Elaine Murphy announced her retirement in April, council passed a motion that charged her, in consultation with the

council’s executive committee — Mayor Bill Gardiner, President Marc Tartaro (Ward 1) and Vice President Bill Tierney (Ward 2) — with choosing the firm that would recruit her successor. But on June 9, the council voted 9 to 2 to rescind that motion, directing instead that the whole council be involved in the selection process. Voting against the reversal were Gardiner and Matt McKnight (Ward 3). “There are no grounds to my mind [for rejecting it],” said Gardiner. “And it’s unusual for us to overturn a previous council motion.” Murphy had selected Voorhees Associates, a choice opposed

by both Tartaro and Tierney. Tierney, who has a professional background in human resources, introduced the motion to overturn the earlier action, saying, “Too many red flags went up for

me to feel I could work with this firm.” He mentioned concerns about the firm’s understanding of Equal Employment OpporHIrInG continued on page 13

Jemal promises WSSC building upgrades by Susie Currie Neighbors concerned about what they see as security problems at the former headquarters of the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission won concessions

from the building's owner during a meeting there on June 23. It's been empty for nearly 20 years, since the water company's headquarters moved to Laurel in WSSc continued on page 12

Included: The July 14, 2010 Issue of The Hyattsville Reporter — See Center Section


Page 2

Hyattsville Life & Times | July 2010

FromTheEditor When generations mix, everyone wins by Paula Minaert Thursday, 11 a.m. My turn to work at St. Jerome’s Café – and I was in a panic. No one else had come. One team member was out of town, another had a family emergency, and someone else had car trouble. I was on my own. Then two eighth-graders from St. Jerome’s School walked in carrying the bag lunches, so I asked them for help. They happily agreed. A few other team members did come later, but these young men stayed to help and they were great. They moved tables, but-

a community newspaper chronicling the life and times of Hyattsville

tered bread, and served pasta. Plus, they were a lot of fun. After lunch I thanked them, and one of them hugged me. It made me realize that I don’t spend much time with children, now that mine are grown. And while I do interact with people older than me, my friends are mostly people my own age. Not too unusual, perhaps, but I think I’m missing something: that something special happens when people of different ages spend time together. Everyone contributes. Everyone benefits. I learned this that day at the café. Then I started looking around and discovered other places close by

where this kind of coming together occurs. One is the Gwendolyn Britt Senior Center in North Brentwood, which draws many Hyattsville residents. They have intergenerational activities that are very popular. Another is the county HMB sports program. Every year, dedicated adults organize and coach baseball, soccer, football, cheerleading and more for our children. The Catholic Youth Organization does the same thing. The city of Hyattsville is running summer day camps for children — something new this year — and also offers monthly Summer Jams and family movie nights.

Then of course, there are the people whose vocation it is to work with children. Of the many I could mention, let me point out Gail Golden, who retired this year after 12 years as principal at Hyattsville Middle School — and after 37 years in education in Prince Georges County. With examples like these before us, we at the HL&T have been pondering ways to include the city’s youngest residents in our pages. Some of you have suggested publishing poetry and book reviews by children; we’d love to hear your other ideas as we move forward. Send your suggestions and

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Mailing address: PO Box 132, Hyattsville, Md 20781 Hyattsville Life & Times is published monthly by Hyattsville Community Newspaper, Inc., a 501c(3) nonprofit corporation. Interested reporters should send their e-mail addresses to the editor to be reminded of deadlines and receive internal news. Articles and news submitted may be edited. The deadline is the last week of the month for the following month’s issue. Letters to the editor and opinions are encouraged. For all e-mail correspondence with HL&T: news, features, tips, advertising and business write to hyattsvillelifeandtimes@gmail.com. To submit articles, letters to the editor, etc., e-mail susie@hyattsvillelife.com. executive editor Paula Minaert paula@hyattsvillelife.com 301-335-2519 Managing editor Susie Currie susie@hyattsvillelife.com 301-633-9209 editorial Intern Kara Rose Production Ashley Perks advertising advertising@hyattsvillelife.com 301-633-4439 Writers & contributors Mylie Durham Victoria Hille Valerie Russell Kimberly Schmidt Hugh Turley Board of directors Julia Duin - President Chris Currie - Vice President Joseph Gigiliotti - General Counsel Paula Minaert - Secretary Peggy Dee Susie Currie - Ex Officio Circulation: Copies are distributed monthly by U.S. Mail to every address in Hyattsville. Additional copies are distributed to libraries, selected businesses, community centers and churches in the city. Total circulation is 7,500. Hl&T is a member of the national newspaper association.

photo courtesy of bill sullivan Bill Sullivan in 1954, standing near his house on 44th Street.

A postwar childhood, filled with outdoor games and a big radio by Paula Minaert Though he recently moved to an apartment in Greenbelt, Bill Sullivan lived in Hyattsville most of his life. He was born in 1937 and his family moved to the city when he was 5. They lived in a house on 44th Street on the east side of Route 1, not far from Gasch’s Funeral Home. “Before that we lived in Bladensburg, but we got flooded out,” says Bill. He remembers the water reaching 6 feet deep and rats and snakes trying to come into the house. He also remembers going to school in Hyattsville when schools

were still segregated. “The laws were passed, but P.G. County didn’t enforce them,” he explains. “Even after Brown [v. Board of Education in 1956], they didn’t integrate.” Life was different then in many ways. “After the war, people didn’t have much money. A lot of people didn’t have cars. My dad took the streetcar and the bus to get to work in D.C.” Bill and his friends used to roam all over the city, with no one worrying about anything bad happening to them. In the winter, they

ideas to Susie Currie at susie@ hyattsvillelife.com, or just submit them to Children’s Page, Hyattsville Life & Times, P.O. Box 132, Hyattsville, MD 20781. And speaking of changes, the full color on our covers and on the city’s “Hyattsville Reporter” insert that debuts this month is just the beginning. Bearing in mind that this is really your community newspaper, we plan to make it a little more interactive in the future. Already, you can find our back issues at http://issuu. com/hyattsvillelifeandtimes. Stay tuned for details on our expanded online presence — and we’ll do the same for your ideas.

skated on a nearby creek, which froze solid every year. In the summer, they played hide and seek and pickup baseball and football games. And at night they slept in the back yard because it was too hot inside. TV hadn’t arrived yet, so people listened to the radio instead. “We had a big radio and I listened to ‘Howdy Doody’ and ‘Fibber McGee and Molly’ and ‘The Shadow.’ I loved it. You could get lost in those programs and imagine you were there. And the news – the radio was our link to the outside world. I remember hearing the announce-

ment of Franklin D. Roosevelt’s death, and the proclamations of VE Day and VJ Day.” Bill and his family used to go the movies at least every week, sometimes more often. “All kinds of things were in short supply after the war,” he says. “So you’d go to the movie theater and get a free soap dish, and have a chance to win a set of dishes. And especially after they were air conditioned, we’d go a lot. It was only five cents until the late 1950s, and then a quarter. But you could go in and stay all day and they wouldn’t chase you out.” One of Bill’s friends was Nicky Nickles, whose father owned a construction company. His family was Catholic. “All the St. Jerome’s kids had to go to one particular Mass together, and I used to go with Nicky and then have Sunday dinner with his family. “I’d been to a couple of other church services, but they didn’t do anything for me. When I went to Mass, I knew that’s where I wanted to go to church. It was the mystery of it all. So I went to convert classes and was baptized on January 6, the Feast of the Epiphany, in 1955.” Bill went to work after high school, first at a gas station across from Marche Florist and then at a carryout. In 1967 he got a job with the Post Office, where he worked first in Hyattsville and then in Riverdale. He still goes to church at St. Jerome’s, every Sunday and most weekdays.


Hyattsville Life & Times | July 2010

Page 3

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photo courtesy of shani warner and dave horlick The penny press on Shani Warner's Madison Street porch has three Hyattsville designs — and one commemorating her engagement to Dave Horlick.

Hyattsville penny press plays role in proposal by Kara Rose Nowadays, many couples expect their weddings to cost a pretty penny. But for one Hyattsville Hills couple, it all started with the engagement. Shani Warner is a long-standing collector of pressed pennies and has more than 160 of them. So when she came home early from work in February to find her boyfriend of six years, Dave Horlick, kneeling next to a penny press on the couple’s front doorstep asking for her hand in marriage, Shani responded with one word: Yes! Dave unveiled the machine from under a blanket and gave Shani two quarters and a penny for her to make the “Shani & Dave YES! 2010” penny, which Shani pressed to accept Dave’s marriage proposal. “Needless to say, he did not make a ‘NO!’ ” Shani joked. Dave ordered the machine online from a small company in Minnesota. The penny press features three additional designs: Magruder Park, the Northwest Branch Trail and Otter Point, the house Shani and Dave have lived in since June 2008. The three designs were cast from pictures Shani had taken that Dave sent to the company. When February snowstorms put the machine’s shipment in limbo, Dave rented a truck and drove out to Annapolis

“Of all the ways Dave could've proposed, there's nothing ... that would have been better..” — Shani Warner

Junction to pick up the penny press himself. With the help of his brother, Michael, Dave managed to get the machine to his front porch, assemble the penny press and “corral” the packaging peanuts before Shani got home from work. “I left work early that day to beat the traffic and get to Ikea to make this frame [for Dave],” Shani said. “It was funny because he was so impatient and asking, ‘When are you going to be home?’ ” Shani and Dave met through Spring Street Networks, a website that hosts online personal ads for a network of media companies. She heard from him within 24 hours of creating her profile, and their first date was ice skating at the National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden. The couple has left the penny press on

their Madison Street doorstep to allow other members of the community to take home a small piece of Hyattsville history for 51 cents.  They issued an open invitation over the H.O.P.E. listserv, to the delight of many fellow subscribers. Hyattsville resident Barbara Runion posted that her husband, Frank Yator, is also a collector of souvenir pennies. “He keeps them in penny album collecting books. It’s a nostalgic way of reminiscing about all the places we have traveled and visited,” she wrote. “We’ll be sure to stop by and add to the engagement fund and our smashed penny collection!” Shani’s “smushed” penny collection, as she likes to call it, features coins from the World Trade Center, the Parthenon, and what she calls “idiosyncratic roadside tourist traps.” When asked what the couple plans to do with the revenue from the machine, Dave said the machine has only produced between $10 and $20 so far. “I estimate that we will have this thing paid off in 70 or 80 years,” he said. The pair has not solidified wedding plans yet, but they hope to send out the “Shani and Dave YES! 2010” designed penny with the invitations, along with a Hyattsville penny for their out-of-town guests. “Of all the ways Dave could’ve proposed,” Shani said, “there’s nothing I could’ve come up with that would have been better.”

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Hyattsville Life & Times | July 2010

Police to get new cars, parking officer

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by Kara Rose Dear Miss Floribunda, Have you heard of something called a lasagna garden? My lasagna-loving family seems to think it is a way to grow most of the ingredients needed to make their favorite Italian dish, and urged me to buy a lot of the Italian vegetable and herb seeds offered by the Hyattsville Horticultural Society last spring. I am growing these with success but hesitate to start calling it a lasagna garden until I’m sure that’s really what it is. Garfield on Gallatin Street Dear Garfield, I’m glad you asked, not only because your family is very confused, but because it gives me a chance to suggest another solution to the most serious problem that most Hyattsville gardeners face: heavy clay. Lasagna gardening, based on sheet composting, was developed by a too-busy-to-weed innkeeper named Patricia Lanza. Her first book, Lasagna Gardening: A New Layering System for Bountiful Gardens, was published in 1999 by Rodale Press and was followed by such sequels as Lasagna Gardening in Small Spaces and Lasagna Gardening with Herbs. While you certainly can grow Italian herbs and vegetables using her method, the reference to lasagna derives from the whimsical analogy that occurred to her while arranging layers of materials in a quilt-like pattern of two-footsquare beds separated by threefoot-wide paths. It looked like lasagna to her. The newspapers she used as the base layer reminded her of the pasta, and the peat moss she put between layers of brown and green organic material (“meat” and “vegetables”) she thought of as the “cheese” that held everything together. Even the wood ash she sprinkled over the whole pile made her think of ground parmesan. Just as square-foot gardening, the technique we spotlighted last month, spares the gardener the trouble of arduous digging and tilling, so does lasagna gardening. It also keeps down weeds, helps with water retention, and is organic. On the other hand, you have to wait a while for results. This makes it ideal for older gardeners low on energy and rich in patience. The best time to begin is the fall. First, put down a layer of newspaper pages soaked in water over the site you want to use for spring planting. Some people use soaked corrugated cardboard, which Lanza uses

photo by flickr/daveeZa Lasagna gardening is based on sheet composting. only for paths. Both materials will suppress weeds and weed seeds but wood-pulp newspaper will decompose more easily over the winter, the weeds it smothers contributing nitrogen and the moist darkness attracting earthworms. The next layer should be peat moss, copiously watered. Then add more paper, and water again. Then layer with whatever “brown” organic material you have at hand — in fall, usually dry leaves. Then water yet again. After adding a layer of newspaper, water and continue with a layer of “green” organic material, such as grass clippings. Add a few pages of newspaper — and water! You can also throw in such kitchen waste as tea bags, egg shells and coffee grounds. You can further enrich with seaweed, animal manure, compost, blood meal, soy meal, and alfalfa pellets. What’s important is to have about four times as much of the “brown” organic material as “green,” and to build the pile up to about 24 inches high. Then cover all the layers with hay or straw for aesthetic purposes and sprinkle wood ash on the top. By spring planting time, the pile will have reduced to about 6 inches high – but underneath will be 6 inches of former clay transformed into soft friable soil full of busy earthworms. You can now plant seeds or plants, perhaps pulling back a partially decomposing layer of newspaper. Continue mulching with compost during the summer, and after harvest in fall make another “lasagna” like your first one. It will improve each year. Meet Hyattsville’s own lasa-

gna gardener, Signor Giovanni Giardinero-Giusto, at the next gathering of the Hyattsville Horticultural Society, on July 17 at 10 a.m. in the municipal building.

Hyattsville’s City Council has approved a 2011 fiscal year budget that allocates just over $6.5 million to the city’s police department. Part of the budget will go to purchase four new squad cars and hire another parking-enforcement officer. The police budget is nearly a million less than last year’s, which funded a major upgrade to the department’s dispatch and record management system. Among other features, the new technology will allow patrol officers to quickly access complete data on an address, including past calls or arrests. The council debated between the purchase of four replacement squad cars, as proposed by Mayor Bill Gardiner, or two cars, as proposed in an amendment by Council President Mark Tartaro (Ward 1), Council Vice President Bill Tierney (Ward 2) and Councilmember David Hiles (Ward 2). Earlier in the budget process, the three had also proposed eliminating

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the K-9 unit. Both amendments were rejected. Police Chief Douglas Holland had originally requested six new squad cars, and Councilmember Paula Perry (Ward 4) voted against the amendment. “The budget got cut down to four [cars] and then it was going to get cut again,” she said. “I don’t want to chance [police officers’ cars] breaking down coming to my house, or residents’, for that matter.” The current budget also added a second parking-enforcement officer position, which, said city spokesperson Abby Sandel, is expected to be “budget-neutral” due to the job’s revenue projections. Gardiner opposed the addition. “I don’t support hiring city staff to play ‘gotcha’ and figure out how many tickets somebody can write,” he said. “We need to review our overall parking management plan, identify what the parking meter compliance rate is and make sure that we are providing a value-added service and not just figuring out how we can get revenue from people.”

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Renovations underway of historic ‘mustard building’ by Kara Rose Renovations are underway on the city-owned Hyattsville Municipal Annex at 4318 Gallatin Street, better known as the Arcade or the "mustard building." The goal, according to the city’s website, is to turn it into the anchor of the Gateway Arts District. Hyattsville’s Community Development Manager, Jim Chandler, said that the city has already replaced the roof, gutted the building and done an environmental remediation, as well as put in steel framing for the internal structure. It has also put in a new second floor, which is the main floor. He added that the city has put in $175,000 of its own money towards the project — in addition to the approximately $1.2 million from external funds. This year’s city budget allocates $256,000 to the project. Chandler said most of that will be spent on installing gas lines, improving the façade, and completing the final engineering design. That design, he said, will provide the costs for

photo by catie currie The city-owned structure at 4318 Gallatin Street is called the “mustard building” due to its color.

Rendering courtesy of Farrell McGlynn Architects The plan is to transform the building into offices, a theater, and public meeting space.

the mechanical and operational work needed, which in turn will allow the city to proceed with getting the necessary permits. The city acquired the property in 2000. Hyattsville Community Development Corporation Director Stuart Eisenberg said the city obtained

theater on the upper level and a bowling alley with billiards tables on the lower floor. But the original foundation and walls of the church remain, and will be incorporated into the new design from Burtonsville-based Farrell McGlynn Architects. In June 2005, the city came to an agreement with the CDC to manage the stabilization project, Eisenberg said. A ”conditions as-

$515,000 in grants in 2001 for repairs, but the grants were untouchable until 2004, when the state approved the matching requirements for funding. The building has a historic past. In 1890, it was the site of Pinckney Memorial Episcopal Church, which gave Church Alley its name. Later, it was converted and expanded to become an entertainment facility with a silent movie

sessment” concluded that the building would need to be gutted and rebuilt before use, and in May 2006, the CDC and the city entered a contract to manage the project. The plan is to move the Anacostia Trails Heritage Area offices into the main floor of the building. The larger space upstairs is being envisioned as a performing arts theater and two public meeting rooms.

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Hyattsville Life & Times | July 2010

photo by valerie russell Nevilla Ottley, founder of Ottley Music School, with piano student Bhaylynn Tiwari.

School proves that music benefits people of all ages by Hannah Bruchman Nevilla Ottley, founder of Ottley Music School, always knew she loved music. After all, it’s in her blood. Both parents were singers, and music came naturally to her when she began lessons as a 4-year-old in Trinidad. She remembers sitting on her father’s lap to hear the evening symphony at 5 p.m., a tradition that sparked an interest in music. Her parents required her to study piano until college, where she also studied the organ and earned a bachelor’s degree in music education. She went on to earn a master’s degree in organ and music

history from Andrews University, and another in conducting from Catholic University. Something else she learned is that her musical roots go deeper than she thought. While studying her genealogy, she came across a 1772 diary entry written by her ancestor, Elizabeth Ottley. She discovered that Elizabeth performed with musician Johann Christian Bach during a Christmas performance. After graduation, Ottley worked as librarian at the now-defunct classical radio station WGMS and as choral conductor at the World Bank. In 1973, she began teaching piano in the evenings in her Silver Spring home, then added music

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theory and ear training. “When people began to ask for more instruments, I began to bring in more teachers,” she recalled. “I began hearing, ‘I wish I didn’t have to go a half-hour for a clarinet lesson.’ When I got two that were interested, I asked a friend of mine to teach. Strings, same thing.” When she moved to Adelphi, the school moved with her. When it outgrew her home in 2000, Ottley Music School opened in University Town Center.

Adorning the white and purple walls of her school are posters of famous historical composers that the 120 students can see as they walk through the doors to study voice, drama, dance,  steel drums or any of the band and orchestral instruments. The 16 teachers hail from all corners of the globe. Passionate about teaching music, Ottley stresses the benefits of learning an instrument. “Music lessons enhance development of the mind,” she said. “Those who

study music show academic benefits of music. It’s one of those things you should do to enhance everything else.” Children can start as early as 3 1/2, but Ottley thinks it’s never too late to learn. Last year, one student who studied piano and voice cut a CD with her niece — at age 82. At two-week summer camps and institutes, students work on their major instruments and take three others. All do steel drums, voice, and drama. Usually each camp holds about 20 students. Elsa Valdiviezo of Hyattsville enrolled her son, Victor, in violin classes there five years ago. She considers Ottley and her staff “part of the family.” Victor agrees. “When she teaches something or leads an orchestra section, she makes sure that each section is doing exactly what is required of them, while still making sure that the orchestra members are having fun,” he said. “I think she is an excellent teacher.” Julia Dennis, 15, of Silver Spring, has been taking voice lessons at the school for more than a year. “Ottley is very direct, determined, and knows what she wants and sticks to it,” Dennis said. “She … acts like her students are her children.” So she’s even more proud when she sees their behavior improve along with their skills. Two years ago, at the urging of a Prince George’s County music teacher, the school began teaching 21 underprivileged students the steel drums at a cut rate. Within six months, she says, the students “began saying thank you and please.” They went on to play for the 2008 National Education Association’s awards banquet at the Verizon Center. “There’s enjoyment in music,” Ottley said. “Musicians enjoy music and the audience enjoys music. As long as you have those two things together, music will last forever.”

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Hyattsville Life & Times | July 2010

Page 7

COMMUNITY CALENDAR Through July 17

Local artist Sherill Anne Gross showcases her new series of cutpaper creations in Pretty Little Things, an exhibit that examines depictions of women in mid-20th century America. Free. Weekdays, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Brentwood Arts Exchange, 3901 Rhode Island Avenue, Brentwood. 301.277.2863.

July 15 to August 31

The Photomania exhibition and sale features the work of the HL&T’s own Valerie Russell, as well as fellow Prince George’s County photographers Stuart Diekmeyer, Diane Tuckman and Richard Weiblinger. Free. 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. University Town Center Metro 3 Building, 6525 Belcrest Road, Suite 132. 301.277.1402.

July 15

Grab a blanket and see the Oklahoma Twisters perform at Jazz on the Lawn at Riversdale. Concertgoers can either bring a picnic or purchase dinner on the grounds courtesy of Calvert House Inn. Free. 7 to 8 p.m. Riversdale House Museum, 4811 Riverdale Road, Riverdale Park. 301.446.3308.

July 17 and 18

Tour the ponds, greenhouses and wetlands and see a spectacular display of lotus and water lilies in full bloom at the annual Lotus and Water Lily Festival. There will be workshops and traditional Asian dancing performances. Free. Saturday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.; Sunday, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Kenilworth Aquatic G a r - dens, 1550 Anacostia Avenue, NE, Washington. 202.426.6905. Take a step back in time for the Civil War tours of the Surratt House Museum during the summer open house. Free. Noon to 4 p.m. Surratt House Museum, 9118 Brandywine Road, Clinton. 301.868.1121.

July 18

Mambo Combo performs salsa, mambo, rumba and samba as part of the Bladensburg Waterfront Park summer concert series. Free. 6 to 7:30 p.m. 4601 Annapolis Road, Bladensburg. 301.779.0371.

July 21

This year’s Shakespeare in the Parks series brings the Maryland Shakespeare Festival’s production of Romeo and Juliet to Magruder Park. All ages welcome. Free.

The Hyattsville Police Department announces

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

7 p.m. Magruder Park, 40th and Hamilton Streets. Rain location: St. Jerome’s School, 5027 42nd Place. 301.446.3234.

July 25

The Prince George’s County Police’s Rhythm in Blues Band performs at the Bladensburg Waterfront Park. No word on if they’ll be covering “Roxanne” or “Every Breath You Take.” All ages welcome. Free. 6 to 7:30 p.m. Bladensburg Waterfront Park, 4601 Annapolis Road, Bladensburg. 301.779.0371.

July 28 and 29

The Chinese Acrobats of Hebei present a show that blends Chinese music and acrobatics. $10. Shows at 10 a.m. and noon both days. Publick Playhouse, 5445 Landover Road, Cheverly. 301.277.1710.

July 31

Learn salsa and help local needy children at ShoeBert Alley Goes Salsa. The event starts with an hour-long salsa lesson, followed by a two-set dance featuring a Latin band. Admission is $15 or a new pair of children’s shoes and socks. 6 to 9 p.m. Publick Playhouse, 5445 Landover Road, Cheverly. 301.277.1710.

With your neighbors, you can watch the Washington Nationals take on the Philadelphia Phillies at Nationals Stadium during the Community Baseball trip. Cost is $33 per person, which includes roundtrip bus fare and a ticket. Buses depart from Magruder Park (40th Avenue and Hamilton Street) at 5 p.m. and the game begins at 7:05 p.m. Reservations required; see www.hyattsville.org for registration form or call 301.985.5020.

August 4

Usually, basketballs aren’t allowed in the library. But the Hyattsville branch will make an exception this evening for former Harlem Globetrotter Spencer “Spinny” Johnson, who is sure to have one on hand during his show for children ages 6 to 12 and their parents. Free. 6:30 p.m. 6530 Adelphi Road. 301.985.4690.  

August 8

Listen to the traditional American music of the U.S. Naval Academy Band. Free. 6 to 7:30 p.m. Bladensburg Waterfront Park, 4601 Annapolis Road, Bladensburg. 301.779.0371.

August 13

Rock out with Ruthie & the Wranglers at calendar continued on page 10

Looking for summer fun for your kids?

Magruder Park, 7 – 9 p.m.

Register now for Summer Camps!

A visit from Spider-man!

Three camps are offered through the Department of Recreation and the Arts:

FREE hot dogs & chips! The Redskin Cheerleaders Cops versus Kids - 3 on 3 Basketball Competition Bike Rodeo with Arrow Bicycles

A helicopter landing

Horses

K-9 demonstrations Prizes and give-aways

Camp Tiny Tots (Ages 3-4) Camp Jamboree (Ages 5-9) Camp Discovery (Ages 10-13) Three sessions remain: Session III July 19 - July 30 Session IV August 2 - August 13 Session V August 16 - August 20 Note: Camp Tiny Tot runs one additional week, through August 27.

Fire trucks from the Hyattsville VFD Moon Bounce and Balloons by Mandy the Clown

Music

Sponsored by the City of Hyattsville Police Department and the Department of Recreation and the Arts

Visit http://www.hyattsville.org/camps or call 301-985-5020 for more info.


Hyattsville R

Page HR1

Hyattsville Life & Times | July 2010

the

No. 196 • July

www.hyattsville.org • 301-985-5000

ANNOUNCEMENTS REMINDERS FROM THE DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS Residents play an important role in keeping our community clean! Thank you for doing your part, and please keep the following guidelines for Household Solid Waste collection in mind:

• City Code requires that residents place

their Toters out for pick-up no earlier than 4:00 p.m. the evening prior to your scheduled collection day. If you need to confirm your scheduled collection day, please call 301/985-5032.

• On the day of collection, please take

your Toter back behind your front property line no later than midnight. • You must use your City-issued Toter for household waste. If you need a new Toter or a larger Toter, please call 301/985-5032. • Yard Waste is collected on Mondays. Taxpayers save money when yard waste is collected separately and appropriately recycled. Please place Yard Waste out for collection no earlier than 4 p.m. on Sundays, and please do not use your Cityissued Toter for Yard Waste. Any other bag or container is fine. Guidelines for Yard Waste collection can be found online at http://www.hyattsville.org/yardwaste. • Call 301/985-5032 in advance for a Monday pick-up of White Goods (appliances), as well as tires. Thank you for your cooperation!

Spider-man makes a special appearance at 2009’s National Night Out Against Crime. The famed webslinger returns for 2010’s event.

Celebrate

National

Night Out 2010

Each year, the City of Hyattsville Police Department, along with corporate sponsors including Target, participate in National Night Out Against Crime with a party in Magruder Park. Established by the National Association of Town Watch in 1984, the event has grown every year. In 2010, Hyattsville will be one of over 15,000 communities celebrating safety and crime prevention. The event takes place at Magruder Park, located at the intersection of 40th Avenue and Hamilton Street, from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. on Tuesday, August 3. Arrow Bikes will bring back their popular Bike Rodeo course. We’ll have visits from Spider-man,

the Washington Redskins Cheerleaders, McGruff the Crime Dog, K9 units, the Hyattsville Volunteer Fire Department fire trucks, police horses and even a helicopter landing. Music, a moon bounce and Mandy the Clown will make the event fun for the whole family. The event is free and open to the public. We’ll end with a walk around the neighborhood at dusk to demonstrate our community’s commitment to safe streets. If you’re not able to join us, help do your part by keeping your porch light on August 3 and every night. It’s an easy way to help reduce crime.


Reporter Hyattsville Life & Times | July 2010

y 14, 2010

IN OTHER NEWS... CAMP REGISTRATION CONTINUES City Summer Camps offer fun for kids ages 3 to 13. Session II started Tuesday, July 6, 2010. Our next two-week session begins on Monday, July 19. Camp Tiny Tots (ages 3 – 4) meets at the City Municipal Building, 4310 Gallatin Street. Camps Jamboree (ages 5 to 9) and Discovery (ages 10 to 13) meet at Magruder Park. Activities include swimming, age-appropriate outings, crafts, games and more. Fees begin at just $200/two-week session. For information, please call 301/9855020 or visit http://www. hyattsville.org/camps.

GIVE BLOOD Our region’s blood supply levels are critically low. You can help by donating blood. The City will host a Blood Drive at the City Municipal Building, 4310 Gallatin Street, on Thursday, July 15 from 2:00 to 7:30 p.m. Call 1-800-GIVE-LIFE to schedule a donation, or visit http://www. redcrossblood.org/ to learn more or find another donation center.

COMMUNITY LEGACY PLAN INTERIM REPORT We’ve listened, we’ve analyzed and now we’re ready to present some preliminary findings for the City’s Community Legacy Plan. The interim report will be presented on Tuesday, July 20 in a

meeting at 3505 Hamilton Street (Former BB&T Building) at 7:30 p.m. Join us to learn more, or visit http://www.hyattsville.org/ legacy2010 for details.

MOSQUITO MONITORING PROGRAM UNDERWAY Ouch! It’s mosquito season in Maryland. The City is participating in the Maryland Department of Agriculture’s (MDA) Mosquito Control Program. To report a problem area in your neighborhood, please call the City’s Department of Public Works at 301/985-5032. We will pass on the required information to the state MDA. Please report the following when you call: • Your address • Time of day when mosquitoes are the worst • Any stagnant water in the vicinity The reported areas are relayed to the Mosquito Control Section on a weekly basis. Visit http://www.hyattsville.org/ mosquitos for more information.

HEURICH PARK IMPROVEMENTS TO FINISH IN JULY The City started improvements to the Mobility Playground at Heurich Park, located at 2800 Nicholson Street, in June. The playground equipment is closed until the project’s completion. We are improving the landscaping and replacing the playground surfacing. The play area is fenced off, and we ask for your cooperation

in keeping children safe by staying off the equipment. Weather permitting, we anticipate completing the work on or around July 19. We apologize for the inconvenience and thank you for your patience.

Page HR2

CALENDAR JULY 2010

14 Hyattsville Environmental Committee meeting, 7:30 p.m. 15 Blood Drive, 2:00 to 7:30 p.m.

Family Fun Night, University Hills Duck Pond Park, 6:30 to 8:00 p.m. Marketing Task Force Meeting, 7:30 p.m.

19 Summer Camp Session III begins 20

Traf�ic Study Meeting, 7:00 p.m. City Council Meeting, 8:00 p.m.

Community Legacy Plan Interim Presentation, Former BB&T Building, 3505 Hamilton Street, 7:30 p.m.

21

Shakespeare in the Park featuring Romeo & Juliet at Magruder Park, 7:30 p.m.

29 Family Fun Night, Heurich Park, 6:30 to 8:00 p.m.

Unless otherwise noted, all events take place at the City Municipal Building, 4310 Gallatin Street.

TRAFFIC STUDY PRESENTATIONS AT TWO PUBLIC MEETINGS THIS MONTH Sabra, Wang and Associates is finalizing the City’s Traffic Report. Thank you for your input. They will share recommendations and more information prior to both of the July 2010 City Council Meetings. Join us at 7:00 p.m. on Monday, July 12 and 7:00 p.m. on Monday, July 19 to learn more.

FARMERS MARKET RETURNS The West Hyattsville Farmers Market re-opened for the 2010 season on Tuesday, June 15. Farm fresh produce and artisanal products are available every Tuesday afternoon, from 2 to 6 p.m., at the West Hyattsville Farmers Market, located behind Queens Chapel Town Center, at the intersection of Queens Chapel Road and Hamilton Street. (Parking is available.) WIC and Senior FMNP checks are accepted.

31 Community Baseball Trip to Nationals Stadium

for Washington Nationals v. Philadelphia Phillies. Bus departs Magruder Park at 5:00 p.m. for 7:05 p.m. game time. Tickets required; please call 301/985-5020 or visit http://www.hyattsville.org/baseball for details.

THE NEW HYATTSVILLE REPORTER IN THE HYATTSVILLE LIFE & TIMES If you’re a regular reader, you’ll notice something different about this edition of the Reporter. In cooperation with the Life & Times, the City has developed a fresh design. Our goal is to bring you the most important information you need, when you need it! Many thanks to the newspaper board and staff for making this change possible. Comments and feedback are always welcome, to Abby Sandel, City of Hyattsville Communications Manager at 301/985-5031 or asandel@hyattsville.org.


Page 8

Hyattsville Life & Times | July 2010

COMMUNITY CALENDAR calendar

jazz, reggae, blues and rock musical acts and puppet shows for the kids. Refreshments are available for purchase. Free. Sundays, 6 to 7:30 p.m. 4601 Annapolis Road, Bladensburg. 301.779.0371.

continued from page 7

tonight’s installment of the city’s Summer Jam series. Free; food from Outback Steakhouse available for purchase. 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Municipal Building, 4310 Gallatin Street. 301.985.5020.

August 14

Observe birds along the Anacostia River with naturalists during this morning’s birdwatching event. Binoculars provided. Children 16 and under must be accompanied by an adult. $2. 9 to 11 a.m. Bladensburg Waterfront Park, 4601 Annapolis Road, Bladensburg. 301.779.0371.

Ongoing

Royale Stadium 14 hosts the summer-long free family film festival on Tuesday and Wednesday mornings. July 20-21: Space Chimps (G) and Hotel For Dogs (PG). July 27-28: Charlotte’s Web (G) and Aliens In The Attic (PG). August 3-4: Wallace and Gromit (G) and The Spy Next Door (PG). August 10-11: Horton Hears A Who (G) and Monsters

"Monsters vs. Aliens" is part of the August lineup of free family films at the Royale 14. Vs. Aliens (PG). Tickets available at the box office on the day of the show. Doors open at 9:15 a.m., movies begin at 10 a.m. Regal Royale Stadium 14, 6505 America Boulevard. 301.864.3456. The West Hyattsville Farmers Market offers garden-fresh produce on Tuesday afternoons from 2 to 6 p.m. Behind Queens Chapel Town Center, Queens Chapel Road and Hamilton Street. 301.627.0977.

The producers-only Riverdale Park Farmers Market is open for the season, with a variety of local vegetables and fruits, honey, baked goods, meat, jams, flowers and more. Free. Thursdays, 3 to 7 p.m. At the intersection of Rhode Island Avenue and Queensbury Road, Riverdale Park. 301.332.6258. During the summer, free Anacostia River Boat Tours are held six days a week. Join a

park naturalist on a pontoon boat to search for birds and other wildlife. All ages welcome. Tuesday through Friday, noon to 12:45 p.m.; Saturdays and Sundays, 5 to 5:45 p.m. Bladensburg Waterfront Park, 4601 Annapolis Road, Bladensburg. 301.779.0371. Bring the family for fun and music at Arts on the Waterfront, a Sunday series that runs through August 15. The event features

The Hyattsville library offers a variety of storytimes. Space is limited; free tickets available at the Children’s Desk. Ages 9-23 months with caregiver:  Mondays, 10:15 a.m. Ages 2-3: Mondays, 11 a.m. and Tuesdays, 10:15 a.m.  Ages 3-5:  Tuesdays, 11 a.m. Ages 3-6:  Wednesdays, 7 p.m. English-Spanish Storytime for ages 3-6:  Saturdays, 10:30 a.m. 6530 Adelphi Road. 301.985.4690.   Community Calendar is compiled by Kara Rose and Susie Currie. It’s a select listing of events happening in and around Hyattsville from the 15th of the issue month to the 15th of the following month. To submit an item for consideration, please e-mail  susie@ hyattsvillelife.com or mail to P.O. Box 132, Hyattsville, MD 20781. Deadline for August submissions is July 23. 

OUTBACK STEAKHOUSE

SUMMER

JAM SERIES 2010

continues on Fridays

The Summer Jam Series is held at the City Municipal Building, at 4310 Gallatin Street, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. the second Friday of the month, Rain or Shine! The event is free and open to everyone. Refreshments are available for purchase, including hamburgers, hot dogs and chicken grilled by Outback Steakhouse. For details, call 301/985-5020 or visit http://www.hyattsville.org/summerjam

rs

rangle W e h T nd Ruthie a August 13

Glass O Septem nion ber 10


Hyattsville Life & Times | July 2010

Page 9

Locals bring Folklife Festival to life by Lindsay Powers

photo by lindsay powers Margot Nassau, who works at Smithsonian Folkways Recordings, helped kids create their own album covers.

photo by lindsay powers Cristina Diaz-Carrera fields a call outside a tent featured in the annual festival's Mexico program.

tival’s acting director, Steve Kidd, and program coordinator Cristina Diaz-Carrera. Kidd, charged with organizing three to four new programs each year, is always on the lookout for potential programs. He’s been on staff since 2001, serving as coordinator for previous themes on New York City, the Silk Road, and Scotland. “It’s kind of like air traffic control,” he said, “[figuring out] which program is ready

for which year.” Even as he walks through the 2010 festival, checking in with curators and coordinators, Kidd is already looking ahead to next year’s, which will include programs on the country of Colombia, the Peace Corps, and Rhythm and Blues music. Diaz-Carrera, this year’s program coordinator for Mexico, started as an intern at the festival. After her work in 2004’s “Nuestra

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Each summer, hundreds of thousands of visitors flock to the National Mall for the annual 10-day Smithsonian Folklife Festival. What most of them don’t know is that the variety of cultural programs wouldn’t be possible without a core group of Hyattsville residents. The event is always scheduled around Independence Day, and this year it spotlighted Mexico, Asian Pacific Americans and something called “Smithsonian Inside Out,” in which museum staff shared their expertise with the public. Spread across the huge spectrum of the festival’s inner workings is an invisible team, whose members knew each other first as coworkers before becoming neighbors here in Hyattsville. Arlene Reiniger, coordinator of the Asian segment, and her husband Pete, who was the festival’s technical director for 10 years,  were especially influential in drawing other people on the team to the city. So was Margot Nassau, who works at Smithsonian Folkways Recordings and helped children design their own record album covers at this year’s event. “I think there was a little bit of a campaign,” joked Nassau, describing how she and the Reinigers “were talking up Hyattsville” with their coworkers. Among the recruits to the city was the fes-

Musica: Music in Latino Culture,” she continued to work on the festival’s Latin American programs. Her job involves year-round planning as the leader of participants, volunteers and interns during the festival’s hectic but wellrun schedule. This year, her challenges in working with participants from remote areas in Mexico included finding translators for cooking and storytelling demonstrations, as well as communicating in advance with those who lacked computers and telephones. “The point of the program is to have the people that don’t have the access [to the outside world] to come here and interact with the people here,” said Diaz-Carrera. Another local connection is Kevin Blackerby, who has lived here since 2007. He started as a volunteer at the festival in between jobs. Now its development officer, Blackerby’s primary job is to generate funding, which he does by “finding people who are already passionate about what we do and what we want to do.” Come crunch time, however, he and his colleagues become deeply involved in the day-to-day aspects of the festival, including providing wheelchair accessibility, signlanguage interpreters, and special tours for individuals with visual impairments. “We wear a lot of different hats,” he said. “And as we get close to the festival, we all find different hats as we go along.”

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Hyattsville Life & Times | July 2010

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Hugh’sNews The wingman and the village by Hugh Turley Lt. Col. James Robert Hildreth arrived in Pleiku, South Vietnam in March 1967. A career Air Force officer trained to fly combat missions, he was anxious to get into the fight before the war ended. So he took the first available assignment, flying an A-1E Skyraider. The aircraft provided close air support to ground forces and attacked supply lines. Hildreth was commander of his squadron and flew 285 combat missions during his tour in Vietnam. The A-1 was heavily armed and low flying, so he could see the people he was shooting at and who were often shooting at him, unlike high performance jets where the pilot seldom sees the people killed when a target is destroyed. On one mission, Hildreth commanded two A-1s ordered to a target on the northern coast of South Vietnam. He does not remember the name of the village or province. “It was on the coast along Route One, the main north-south highway,” was all that he could recall in a recent interview. The forward air controller (FAC), whose primary job was ensuring the safety of friendly troops, told him it was an enemy village. But Hildreth wondered. “It just didn’t look right,” he

said. “It was an old village with three or four hundred houses and probably twelve to fifteen hundred people. It had been there for a long time.” So he asked why it was a target. The FAC said it had been identified as an enemy village because “three Vietcong in black pajamas were seen running into the village from the rice paddy across the road.” Hildreth said, “I told the air controller, ‘Hell, I wear black pajamas.’ So I asked if they were armed and he said they were.” When Hildreth pointed out that they could have been carrying rakes or hoes, the FAC told him the provincial governor, a lieutenant colonel in the South Vietnamese army, was in the back seat of his plane and he said it was a Vietcong village. Hildreth decided to fly in low for a closer look and see if he could draw some enemy fire. Instead, he saw small children smiling and waving in a courtyard. The FAC instructed him to drop napalm so the breeze from the sea would burn the entire village. Hildreth and his wingman planned to approach from opposite directions, but the wingman dropped his napalm across the road. When Hildreth saw a woman run from a hut with an infant strapped on her back and a

young child holding her hand, he too dropped his napalm away from the village. The FAC was furious. Back at their base his wingman told him, “Sir, I have three small grandchildren at home, and I could never face them again if I had followed those orders.” Hildreth transferred his wingman to another unit because he did not want to fly any more “combat” missions. Hildreth reported what had happened to a brigadier general, the director of the command center of Seventh Air Force. His answer, he recalls, was: “Don’t you know what’s going on? The village didn’t pay their taxes and the [governor] was teaching them a lesson.” A few days later, during another mission over the same area, Hildreth saw the village had been totally destroyed. He was sure the report read, “Target 100% destroyed, body-count 1200 KBA [killed by air] confirmed.” When asked if he would have destroyed the village had he been flying a F-105 supersonic fighter-bomber, Hildreth replied coolly, “Yes, [because] you don’t see the people.” He continued flying combat, and went on to lead the entire Pacific region as commander of the 13th Air Force. General James R. Hildreth retired on July 1, 1981.

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Page 11

MAKING A SPLASH

Hyattsville Life & Times | July 2010

photos by valerie russell The Hamilton Splash Park, which opened on June 17 at Magruder Park, has been a big hit with neighborhood kids. Clockwise from top, Casey Ross, age 5, keeps cool in the water. Arabia Mashack, 14 ,and her niece, Shekinah Mashack, share a moment in the pool. The Canales boys — Elmer, Oscar and Kevin — enjoy a little brotherly fun in the water.

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Hyattsville Life & Times | July 2010

wssc

continued from page 1 1991. Developer Douglas Jemal won a contract to purchase the Hamilton Street property in December 2004, and has since removed hazardous materials such as asbestos. Also removed during several subsequent break-ins: the wiring, mechanicals, and copper pipes — “basically, anything of value,” Senior Code Enforcement Officer Chris Giunta told the group. Though the vacant property hasn't been crime-free over the years, some nearby residents say the problems began to accumulate after a fire there on Dec. 30 that resulted in firefighters having to break several windows. Douglas Development moved quickly to board up the windows. When the neighbors met six months later, the boards remained – and in that time, nearby residents have witnessed an increase in beer cans, condoms, and loiterers on the property. About a dozen neighbors in the so-called "impact zone" — Hamilton and Gallatin streets and 41st Avenue — gathered in the building’s lower parking lot, where they met with Douglas representative Paul Millstein and several city officials, including Mayor Bill Gardiner and Police Chief Douglas Holland, as well as County Councilman Will Campos. "There's been a huge change in the level of security under Douglas Development," said Gail Houle, who's lived across the street from the building for 25 years. "WSSC used to have 24-hour security guards" for the deserted property before it was sold, she and several others recalled.

photo by paula minaert After a fire at the former WSSC headquarters, owners moved quickly to board windows. At press time, some of the boards had been replaced with glass. "Twenty-four hour security is not something we can do," countered Millstein, adding, "Well, we can, but we won't." He did agree to three suggestions, however: • Re-establishing electrical service to the building in order to install lights around its perimeter, especially in areas susceptible to break-ins. • Clearing away shrubbery and other plantings, as designated by a third party, to improve visibility and reduce hiding places. • Replacing all plywood and bro-

ken glass with a shatterproof glass alternative by July 9. Neighbors had also suggested surveillance cameras and motion detectors, but in a July 4 e-mail Millstein said there were "no cameras as of yet [and] we're still discussing motion detectors on the new lights." He also said that the "glass may be replaced with glass." Whatever the material, though, it won't be finished by July 9 — "but well on its way." The meeting was organized by Kathy Black, who lives across the street. The original building, with its Art Deco-influenced ornamentation, dates from 1939; additions in 1953 and 1963 expanded it to fill the triangular block. Now, the building is essentially a

“There’s no question that an occupied building is the best [longterm] solution.” — Paul Millstein Douglas representative

shell, with no plumbing, electricity, or heating and air conditioning. On a self-guided tour after the meeting, residents seemed dismayed at the building's condition. A pile of feces sat just inside the front door, while cavernous elevator shafts gaped and paint peeled from many surfaces. “We’d be happy to donate space for city offices or a police substa-

tion,” Millstein offered. “They can have it for free.” Afterwards, both Gardiner and Holland said that the building's condition and uncertainty about its future made the idea untenable. "There's no question that an occupied building is the best [longterm] solution," said Millstein. But he noted that currently, the company has no plans for the building — including, some homeowners wondered, maintaining it. "Everyone else had to shovel their sidewalks [after the recordsetting snowfalls in February]. You waited for the snow to melt," local homeowner Flawn Williams told Millstein. "This is your building. You need to take responsibility for it, not leave it to others."

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Page 13

HIRING

LIBRARY

continued from page 1

continued from page 1

tunity Commission regulations and added that he believes there are “veracity issues.” Council member Paula Perry (Ward 4) said, “It was a mistake that Elaine Murphy told the firm that it was hired. I have a problem voting after the fact.” She added that she thought the whole council should choose the firm, not just staff and the executive committee. Instead, the city has contracted with another firm, the Mercer Group, to help fill the city administrator slot. Acting directors have been appointed for the recreation and treasurer positions, and the council was updated on the searches during its July 7 meeting. Management Partners, which is handling the search for a treasurer, presented information on three candidates, and council voted to interview all of them. Mercer presented a timeline that had a new city administrator in place by early December, and recommended that the mayor and entire council serve on the selection committee. Filling the recreation and arts director position will be handled internally; already, nearly 50 people have applied for the job. The selection committee will be composed of the city administrator, assistant city administrator and council members David Hiles (Ward 2), Tim Hunt (Ward 3), Carlos Lizanne and Paula Perry (Ward 4), and Ruth Ann Frazier (Ward 5).

second only to Bowie. Local resident Joan E. Myles said that she and her family were regular users of the library until she noticed that “multiple books we returned” were not getting checked in, resulting in erroneous overdue notices. She chalks this up to “staffing shortages.” Several regular library users were dismayed at the news of more cuts. Anne Baum said that she grew up going to a public library nearly every week, a tradition she and her husband have continued with their 19-month-old, Maggie. “We go on Sundays quite a lot, since my husband and I both work. And Saturdays are already so busy there,” said Baum, an eight-year Hyattsville resident.

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“The last time I went, we couldn’t find a parking space.” Teaze acknowledges that Sunday is a popular day for library users — and “my guess is that Saturdays might get busier.” But the reason that day was targeted, she says, lies in the union contract library employees have with UFCW Local 1994 MCGEO (Municipal and County Government Employees Organization). It stipulates that they can’t be required to work on Sundays; those who do earn time and a half. “Our biggest expense is our payroll,” said Teaze, so that was the cut that made the most sense. She says that 25 positions throughout the system will remain frozen; filling vacancies will be “evaluated on a case-bycase basis.” Future plans call for the branch to be renovated in 2012.

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Page 14

Hyattsville Life & Times | July 2010

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July 2010 Hyattsville Life & Times