Higher Parking Rates in Bethesda, Kensington Considers Lower Voting Age and Performance on AP Tests Declines

Higher Parking Rates in Bethesda, Kensington Considers Lower Voting Age and Performance on AP Tests Declines

A weekly sampling of reader comments from the most-read Bethesda Beat stories

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A weekly sampling culled from reader comments from the most-read Bethesda Beat stories.


Bethesda Street Parking Could Increase to $4 An Hour at Peak Times

In a move toward “demand pricing,” the hourly parking rate at meters in downtown Bethesda could nearly double to $4 an hour at busy times under a proposal from the county executive. Higher rates are also proposed for central Silver Spring and parts of Wheaton

Reader comments

  • Parking rates should be based solely on what it costs to keep the parking district solvent, i.e., to pay for the garages, parking meters, maintenance, monitoring, etc. If the parking districts are running a deficit, the rates should be increased. If they are running a surplus, the rates should be decreased. The parking districts were established as a public service. They weren’t designed to be a revenue source for the county.
  • Bethesda residents can afford it. Just do it.
  • Gotta love regressive policies.
  • Everything comes full circle. I grew up in Bethesda in the 80s. No one wanted to go to downtown Bethesda back then – now in the 2010s again no one wants to go to downtown Bethesda.
  • I know when I have a choice of a going to a shop in downtown Bethesda vs other parts of Bethesda (when they have more than one outlet), I’ll choose outside of downtown Bethesda for this reason. Who wants to pay for parking while picking up Domino’s pizza on a Tuesday night?
  • I go to Bethesda all the time and always park in one of the garages. It sure beats driving around the block a few times. With the latest garage in Bethesda Row, I always get a spot. Although I do agree that it will hurt small retailers who rely on people zipping in and out of their stores.


Third Churchill High Student Sickened After Vaping At School

A student at Potomac’s Churchill High School admitted using a vaping device and ingested THC, the main active ingredient of cannabis. She was taken to the hospital. Earlier this year, two other students were sickened after vaping. County health officials are stepping up outreach and education programs about the hazards of using e-cigarettes and other vaping devices.

Reader comments

  • Is it possible that it’s just standard protocol to send these student to the hospital for being stoned? Maybe sending them to the hospital is not so much medically necessary, but more an exercise in shaming.
  • Greater access to pot means lots more of these incidences. It’s just beginning. Slippery slope in the name rod money. Gotta give growers and distributes their money. Equity, equity, equity.


Kensington Considering Lowering Voting Age to 16

Leaders in Kensington are looking into allowing 16 year-olds to vote in local elections either through a ballot referendum or direct vote by the Town Council to amend the charter.

Reader comments

  • Kensington should also implement non-citizen voting in town elections.
  • How do they feel about the age limit on smoking? They should lower that to 15 or 16 too, right? If you think these teens are smart, then let them live their lives. By the way, how many beer and wine stores are there in Kensington? Do you really think your citizens are intelligent or do you just want their votes? The citizens of Kensington deserve what they get.
  • Parent of several teens here–terrible idea.


County AP Test Taking Increases, Performance Drops

Between 2016 and 2018, the number of Advanced Placement tests taken among Montgomery County students increased by 5,644, but the percentage of students who received a score of 3 or higher — the threshold that indicates college readiness — decreased by more than 3%.

Reader comments

  • The data presented in this article are (1) terribly misleading and (2) so vague that I don’t know what to make of them. Showing counts of one metric (tests taken) and percentages of another (‘passing’ scores) makes it difficult to make sense of the two together. The author doesn’t help sort any of this out, and the continued reference to “performance drops” instead of “average performance drops” makes it sound like there was a bad outcome when that isn’t supported by the evidence given.
  • Maybe the kids are spending too much time on their phones during class, texting etc.
  • Or maybe it’s because other schools across the country have 2 extra weeks to prepare because they start mid-August, and not after Labor Day!


Full text and additional comments accompany the individual online stories and updates.

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