Poolesville Master Plan – MCA Submits Comments

Please click here for MCA’s comments.

The process is not over and there will be further opportunity for public input.

Poolesville’s Draft Master Plan offers some advancements and some potential for concern.

This plan anticipates adding approximately 1700 new residents.  Will the shared Piedmont groundwater aquifer be able to sustain new water consumers and withstand more impermeable surface and runoff? Does this build out comply with repeatedly stated wishes of Town residents to stay a small, rural community? The plan affects both the Town and the surrounding rural communities as it brings potential for traffic and resource depletion and degradation.   The public hearing is scheduled for September 14 7:30pm at Poolesville Town Hall.

Comments may be sent to:  Email townhall@lan2wan.com

Copy us please at:  info@mocoalliance.org

Mapping Reveals Big Changes in MD Land Cover!

land use map

BALTIMORE, MD (Thursday, August 18, 2011) – Between 2002 and 2010, developed lands in Maryland increased by 8.4 percent, or 128,650 acres. That was- twice the rate of population, which increased 4.8 percent, or 259,600 persons, according to analysis in the State’s new Land Use/Land Cover map.

Not sounding much like smart growth.  This really makes it all the more clear that we must press forward with the preservation of the Ag Reserve here in Montgomery.  Don’t be fooled that development is tied to population growth in all cases.

For full news release click  Press Release

Queen of the Sun Film Screening! September 26th



Brookside Gardens, Montgomery Countryside Alliance and Audubon Naturalist Society invite you to….

Join us for a film screening: “Queen of the Sun: What are the Bees Telling Us?”



September 26- 7pm
Brookside Gardens, Wheaton, MD

Click here to see the trailer.

Buy tickets below through our secure pay pal account.

You have the option of getting discounted MCA membership with your tickets.
MCA has been chosen as “One of the Best” charities in the Greater DC region by the Catalogue for Philanthropy, your gift will go right to work to maintain a vibrant Ag Reserve and farming community for generations to come.

Thank You!

Hilltop Farm in Boyds: Not over!

Photo of the activists that have long sought to keep Hilltop in farming:  Peter Eeg, Dolores Milmoe, Jim Coleman, Tom Leedy and Peg Coleman.

This coming September, Montgomery County Planning Board will hear argument for reconsideration of a plan to build 7 new homes on a 232 acre parcel along West Old Baltimore and Slidell Roads in the Ag Reserve.  This is another clustered suburban subdivision that not only conflicts with the intent of the Reserve but also undermines the purpose of the child lot provision.  This owner claimed child lots for corporate “children” in order to slide past an easement that was given for nearly 1 million in taxpayer dollars.  That is chutzpa!

See Washington Examiner August 11, 2011

Washington Examiner July 27, 2011

Gazette July 25, 2007

Farmers tell cows “Make your own hay!”

“Nature believes in this approach and I believe in this approach.”  Andy McIntire, Owner operator McIntire Cattle Company

New pasture management techniques were discussed on a stinkin’ hot day in Virginia.  Tip of the rake to Virginia Conservation Network for organizing the event!

Read on.

Keep Montgomery Growing! Join MCA today.

Your membership and donations keep us working toward a vibrant and beautiful Ag Reserve here in Montgomery County.  Membership numbers truly matter when we go before state and local officials to testify or to seek support for our issues.   Moreover, our budget, while lean, does support two  professional staff members as well as expenditures on educational materials, legal counsel and environmental consultants.  Now, when issues of importance arise, including land uses that endanger our rural lands, the machinery is in place and ready to respond. MCA has built a solid reputation on its professionalism, work ethic  and results oriented approach.  We owe deep gratitude to our members, donors and partners.

Read more:  Where does my donation go?

Summer Producers Summit

Back in February, MCA convened a producers summit, drawing local farmers and community leaders together to discuss the challenges to farming in our region and brainstorm solutions.

While a number of great initiatives came from the meeting, (notably Land Link and the Producers Listserve), the conversation is far from over and the work toward a vibrant Reserve goes on.  MCA will be hosting a follow up summit this month.

Please Join us for dinner and conversation on Tuesday,  August 30th 5pm
at Button Farm (16820 Black Rock Road Germantown)

See the invite and rsvp here

Farmer fights for farmstand spot on River Rd.

This just in from a local farm family-

Johnathan Sadd opperated his Country Thyme farmstand along River Road for 10 years under a permit with the County until the State Highway Administration shut it down citing safety concerns. Using other sites to sell the farm’s produce have not been profitable and the Sadds are now petitioning the Governor to intervene with a Change.org petition. You can get involved by signing the petition or  visiting the farm’s facebook page.

Press on this issue:



MoCo Food Council Seeks Coordinator

MCA is pleased to be one of the many local organizations involved in the effort to start a Food Council that will work to strengthen our local food system.  The Council will consist of all local food stakeholders- Farmers, Consumers, Retail Outlets, Farmers Markets, Local Government, Civic Organizations, Restaurants, and others.

We need someone who can coordinate the day to day operation of the Council. Is that you? Please see the job post below:

Coordinator for Food Council – Montgomery County, MD

Seeking a program coordinator to assist in the formation of a new Food Council in Montgomery County, Maryland.  The position will be responsible for supporting an existing Food Policy Advisory Board as it creates the council, this consultant will serve the Council through the Community Foundation for Montgomery County.  Candidates should have well-rounded experience working in the non-profit arena – in addition to normal office work (personal communications, database maintenance, etc.), job responsibilities will include media relations, attendance at political meetings, grant writing, coalition building, website and social media management, and other related activities.  The ideal candidate should have the following qualifications:

*  A passion for and experience with local and sustainable food issues and advocacy

*  Experience working in issue advocacy campaigns, or related organizing experience

*  Experience with fundraising; specific experience with grant writing preferred

*  Strong writing and speaking skills

*  Excellent interpersonal relation skills

*  Facility with Microsoft Office and other online tools (including social media and basic website maintenance)

*  Ability to travel within Montgomery County (must have own transportation)

Specific duties of the position will include, but are not limited to:

* setting up a database and merging contact info

• setting up a mail merge

• maintaining contact with the advisory board and setting up meetings

• attending community and private meetings

• acting as a liaison and taking notes at said meetings

• developing and maintaining a website and social media platforms

• fundraising, including grantwriting, individual solicitations and online fundraising

The Montgomery Food Council Coordinator will work from a home office or preferred location, but must be able to attend meetings or appointments as necessary in the county. Pay is comparable to other nonprofit start-ups and contingent on experience.  Advancement to a permanent and/or full time position is possible.

To apply, please send a cover letter, resume, writing sample and 3 professional references to fcsearchcommittee@mocoalliance.org, no later than September 15, 2011.   No phone calls please.