Sunday, March 9, 2014

Brickyard Coalition and its Convenient Memory Lapse

Yesterday, I received an odd email from the Brickyard Coalition, here in Montgomery County.
Here is the 'breaking news" from the Coalition - they have decided to endorse Doug Duncan in the upcoming Democratic Primary for County Executive. 
Are they serious?  I asked them, and have yet to get a response.

Remember back to 2003 when Steve Silverman, then a County Council member, went public with his plan to bring affordable housing to the Brickyard site?  Here is the Gazette article from November 19, 2003. 


Turns out, that a few weeks before, the COUNTY EXECUTIVE DOUG DUNCAN demanded that the Montgomery County Board of Education turn over all property not currently planned for school purposes.  You can see the March 22, 2004 Board of Education memorandum below. 

Even more surprising at the time - the County and the Board of Education had been turning over numerous school sites, in secret, without any public hearing or notice.  We were only tipped off to this transfer because of Steve Silverman's slip of the tongue.

Without going into all the history, many of us learned a lot about our elected representatives, who we thought we could trust.   The resulting battle also cost a lot of folks a substantial amount in legal fees.

Even after the property was "saved" from housing, the ever trusted right hand to Mr. Duncan, Jerry Pasternak, subsequently tried to turn the Brickyard property into soccer fields.   With more legal fees.

What has changed?  Can we trust Doug now?

So - did the Brickyard Coalition simply forget? Has Doug Duncan changed his mind about the property? Is Jerry Pasternak still Doug's right hand go to man?  Or does Doug still want to use the property for housing? If I were a member of the Brickyard Coalition, I would think carefully before I would endorse an official who generated much angst and huge legal bills for my neighbors.

Memory lapses seem to be abundant this election year. 

Maybe the motto of the Parents Coalition should be "We keep files so you don't have to."


  1. We are respectfully requesting that you correct the inaccurate statements in the post on the Parents' Coalition website under the name Magnet Mom that the Brickyard Coalition has endorsed a candidate for County Executive. We are troubled that you would post such inaccurate information without confirming the facts with us first. [deleted irrelevant material].

    The Brickyard Coalition has not yet endorsed any candidate for County Executive, BOE or any other office, but we may do so in the future. Meanwhile, we will continue to inform our members and our community of issues related to the Brickyard site.

    We believe we have a duty to share with our members and other interested voters key information regarding the position of County Executive candidates regarding the Brickyard school site, such as the letter we received from Doug Duncan. We expect to receive additional statements from other County Executive candidates regarding their own positions relating to the future of the Brickyard site and when we do we will also share their positions with our members. Additionally, it is our hope to engage the candidates for the Board of Education in this discussion.

    We believe it is healthy and productive to have a robust discussion about the future of the Brickyard site before the elections, especially in light of the possible use of the Brickyard site as a School Bus Depot as being considered by the MCPS-County work group and the recent experience with the BOE lease of the Brickyard site to the County.


    Brickyard Coalition

  2. Many of us received an email from the Brickyard Coalition with the header, 'Doug Duncan Farm Endorsement' and went on to read a glowing email abut Mr. Duncan. Here is aone sentence from that email, 'If elected County Executive, he would do everything in his power to see that this plan comes to fruition.'. Not, 'he said he would do everything in his power.' If that isn't an endorsement I don't know what is. As this is Montgomery County, a 'no fingerprints' endorsement is no surprise from the Brickyard Coalition who are working so hard behind the scenes to steal taxpayer property.

  3. Many of us in the community are gravely disappointed by the Brickyard Coalition. This group is perceived as a bunch of NIMBYs.

    Get over it folks. The organic farm is gone. Let the public use public land! Free the Brickyard MS site from the Brickyard Coalition.

    1. @Anonymous March 12, I agree, this is not the private property of the people who live in Potomac. It is publicly-owned property and it has always been reserved for public purposes. It is not one family's 'family farm,' as has been stated repeatedly by interested parties. Get over it.


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