Ark Media is seeking African American families from Prince George’s County, Maryland for a story about the Black Middle Class, as part of a four-hour PBS documentary series.

This series — tentatively entitled FROM BLACK POWER TO THE WHITE HOUSE – takes viewers on a journey through the last half-century of African American history, exploring the unprecedented progress and lingering obstacles to racial equality since the landmark legislative victories of the civil rights movement. The series will be hosted and executive produced by Professor Henry Louis Gates, Jr., and will air on national PBS in 2016.

We are looking to interview a family from Prince George’s County as part of a discussion about the growth of the African American middle class.

We would love to speak to you if you or your family:


  • Identify as middle or upper middle class and African American
  • Currently live in Prince George’s County
  • Moved to Prince George’s County in the 1970’s
  • Lived in a neighborhood with a population that changed from predominantly white to African American
  • Observed first-hand the effects of the subprime mortgage crisis of 2008-09 in your neighborhood


We’re interested in the factors that drew you to your current neighborhood, your experiences living there, and the changes your neighborhood has undergone since your arrival.

Please feel free to forward this message to your contacts. Please reach out to Eu-Hua Chua, Associate Producer at or (718) 935-9745 ext 107.

County Named Leader in Waste Diversion and Recycling

When it comes to waste diversion and recycling, Prince George’s is Maryland’s greenest County. The County now ranks No. 1 in the State for keeping trash out of its landfill and in second place for recycling. This is an all-time high for the County and a significant step towards its ultimate goal of zero waste.?

“I want to thank all residents, businesses and nonprofits for stepping up to make Prince George’s County clean, green and beautiful,” says County Executive Rushern L. Baker, III. “Everyone has a role in making Prince George’s County the best place to live, work and play in the region. Everyday actions like recycling make a difference in putting the County at the top.”

“We have introduced new programs to efficiently capture and realize the value of many things that we throw away” says Department of the Environment Director Adam Ortiz. “However, the credit goes to our businesses and residents who have been recycling and composting like never before. We also thank the County Council and local activists for their advocacy and support.”

According to official figures just released by the Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE), the County’s 2013 waste diversion rate rose to 64.53 percent surpassing its 2012 rate of 54.44 percent. The County also saw an increase in its recycling rate moving to 59.53 percent, up from 54.55 percent in 2012 and slightly behind Washington County.

MDE calculates the rate by adding the disposed trash tonnage and the recycling tonnage to provide a total waste number. The recycling tonnage is then divided by the total waste number (tonnage) to obtain the recycling rate. Because of the efforts residents and businesses have made in eliminating waste before it starts, the County received the maximum Source Reduction Credit of 5 percent from MDE. Examples of source reduction practices include leaving grass trimmings on your lawn to add nutrients back into the soil, using reusable shopping bags and water bottles and selecting products that contain the least amount of packaging.

“We will continue to reach out and educate our residents and businesses to make sure they continue to recycle and compost,” said DoE’s Recycling Section Manager Marilyn Rybak.  “Our initiatives are some of the boldest and most innovative best practices that are in place, not only in the State, but nationwide.”

Several recycling initiatives that help the County reduce its carbon footprint include its single-stream recycling program that utilizes a 65-gallon wheeled recycling cart, allowing residents and businesses to recycle more items; a food scrap composting pilot program for residential, commercial and educational institutions; the County’s inaugural ban on disposable plastic bags in yard waste collection, cutting down on the amount of waste reaching the landfill and “mining” of materials on the landfill.

Other new initiatives that will help boost the rate include a new County law requiring businesses to incorporate waste reduction and recycling programs in their daily practices, a recycling program geared toward multifamily dwellings (apartments and condominium), a new recycling partnership with Prince George’s County Public Schools and Joint Base Andrews, and continued public outreach and educational programs for residents and businesses.

To view a full copy of the MDE Report, click here.  For more information on the County’s Recycling Program, source reduction or other waste management programs, visit or contact County Click 3-1-1.

The Town’s Downtown Business District property and business owners are invited to the 3rd Public Meeting about the Town’s recent grant award from the State of Maryland for its Façade Improvement Program (FIP) project. The Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development has provided the Town with a $35,000 grant. This is significantly less than what was requested. We need your input on how to divvy up the grant money. Should we provide for many small grants, or should we proceed with grant amounts as envisioned, i.e., one $30,000 property owner grant and one $5,000 business owner grant? Please attend the meeting to let us know your thoughts. If you cannot attend, please feel free to contact Mr. Sonnett at 301-627-6905 ext. 1, or Christina Pompa at 301-780-2222. In addition, the Town of Upper Marlboro Design Guidelines have been finalized and are available on the M-NCPPC website for viewing or download. Click the following link to find this recently featured publication: These Design Guidelines are a key tool for implementing the Town’s Façade Improvement Program. We look forward to seeing you on the 26th at the Olde Towne Inn 14745 Main Street Upper Marlboro, MD 20772 from 8:30—9:30 a.m. Click on the headline for more information and to view the flyer. For more information or to RSVP, call Town Hall at 301-627-6905.

2015 02 26 Bus & Prop Mtng Flyer

FIP Application

FIP Info

On February 24, 2015 the Board of Commissioners for The Town of Upper Marlboro approved Ordinance 2015-01 Fiscal Year 2015 Budget Amendment to properly include funds received through a State grant. The ordinance becomes effective March 16, 2015.

Total Revenues for the FY15 budget are $1,034,944 and includes the transfer(s) of $212,026 from Unrestricted Funds and $1,600 from Designated Funds. Total expenditures are: General Government: $467,126; Public Safety: $260,701; and, Public Works: $307,117. The tax levy for FY15 remains unchanged and is set at $0.24 per $100 of assessed valuation of all real estate, and at $0.45 of assessed valuation for personal property and Utility, subject to taxation by The Town of Upper Marlboro for general fund purposes including debt service purposes. Copies are available at Town Hall, 14211 School Ln, Upper Marlboro, MD 20772 and online at

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Do you have an old photograph taken in Upper Marlboro before 1945? If you do, then Darnall’s Chance House Museum wants to see it! The photograph can be of anything or anyone from Upper Marlboro’s past – a building, special event, tobacco warehouse, fishing boat, farm, family picture – you name it. The only criteria is the photograph was taken in the Upper Marlboro vicinity before the end of World War II and has never been published in a book or newspaper or housed in a public archive/library.  All the photographs gathered for this contest will be given to the Town of Upper Marlboro Historical Committee for inclusion in their archives.  Five winning photographs will receive $75 each. All entries will be on public display at the museum on Fridays & Sundays between June 1 and June 30 during tour hours. Winners will be announced and prizes awarded at the Colonial Picnic on June 13th.  Submission Deadline: May 15, 2015.  For questions, call Darnall’s Chance House Museum at 301-952-8010 or email  or go online to:

Open the PDF flyer to read the Contest Rules (page 2):  Upper Marlboro Photo Contest PDF



The Board of Town Commissioners will hold a Special Town Meeting on Tuesday, February 24, 2015 at 9:15 a.m. at the Town Hall, 14211 School Lane, Upper Marlboro, MD 20772. At this meeting, the Board will be voting on and passing Ordinance 2015-01 (FY15 Budget Ordinance Amendment), as well as, continuing discussion on general & administrative issues. The meeting is open to public participation.

Open Link to read the Town’s newsletter for February 2015.



The next Town of Upper Marlboro Historical Committee “Archiving Session” will be on Saturday, February 21, 2015 at the Town Hall starting at 10:00 a.m. The meeting is open to the public. Residents of the Town and surrounding area are encouraged to bring items of historical interest (such as letters, drawings and photos) to be scanned for the Town’s Archives. Contributors will receive a copy of the scans on a CD free of charge. The TUMHC also conducts Oral History interviews to chronicle the stories of people and events from our Town’s past—one can interview at this meeting, or schedule an interview for a later date that’s more convenient. For more information, call the Town Hall, or contact the TUMHC on their website where you can also see many images already in the Town’s Archives.  The TUMHC is always looking for new members and volunteers to help out with events, research and archiving our Town’s rich history. You don’t have to be a researcher or a historian to participate . . . Just a local citizen who wants to give back to their community—and have fun doing it!  Visit their website at:

Due to the weather, our recycle pick-up contractor, BATES Trucking Inc., has informed us that pick-up of recyclables will be done on Friday, February 20, 2015.

At their monthly Town Meeting on February 10, 2015, the Board of Town Commissioners passed an Emergency Ordinance  . . . click on link to read Ordinance 2015-02

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