Community News
May, 2020
Upcoming Meeting Dates

2020 SMHOA Board Meeting
3rd Tues. each month @ 7:00 PM.
3rd District Police Station, Public Meeting Room
1002 Milestone Drive, Silver Spring, MD

All homeowners are welcome to attend meetings. 

May 19**, Jun 16, Jul 21, Aug 18, Sept 15, Oct 20, Nov 17, Dec 15

** Due to the concern regarding the spread of the Coronavirus Disease “COVID-19,” the Board meeting scheduled for May 19, 2020 @ 7:00 PM will be held via Teleconference. As we do not deem it necessary to postpone or cancel the meeting, we do feel it’s in everyone’s best interest to take precautionary measures and follow CCOC, CDC and Government recommendations regarding social distancing during this outbreak. Please see the following teleconference information below:

You can join the SMHOA May 19 Board meeting from your computer, tablet or smartphone by clicking here .

You can also participate by phone: 1 877 309 2073, Access Code: 383-597-685

The meeting will be facilitated in a slightly different, yet professional, manner given the circumstances. As always, all questions / concerns are welcomed during the Open Forum from 7-7:30 PM. If you wish to make comments in the Teleconferenced Board meeting in May, you will need to e-mail your name to Charles Lasky to have your name placed on the commenters list by 1:00 PM on Friday, May 15, 2020. All names on the commenters list will be called on during the open forum portion of the meeting. You may also submit your questions by e-mail to Charles Lasky prior to the Board meeting. The Board will try to answer submitted questions during the open forum. Questions must also be submitted by 1:00 PM, Friday, May 15, 2020.

Telephone Etiquette and General Functionality:

  • The call will be led by the Board President (i.e. meeting chair) Snowdens Mill HOA is managed by Community Association, Inc. 15742 Crabbs Branch Way, Rockville, MD 20855 Contact: Charles Lasky, 301-258-7711, ext. 140.
  • Call in early.
  • Mute your line; the golden rule of conference calls is unless you are speaking, always mute your line to avoid background noise.
  • We will be sure to stick to the agenda for easy following.
  • In order to have a functioning meeting, unless you are addressed by the meeting chair, please refrain from interjecting, thus interfering from the flow of the meeting.
  • Please remember that after the Open Forum, this a Board meeting and will be conducted as such with participation limited to the Board members and Management Thank you for your patience and understanding during this unprecedented time. We look forward to you joining the Board meeting via teleconference on May 19, 2020.

Thank you for your patience and understanding during this unprecedented time. We look forward to you joining the Board meeting via teleconference on May 19, 2020.
Welcome New Neighbors

Ermiyas Mengesha & Senait Kassaw, Tufa Terrace
Sebastian Davidson & Assita Traore, Agate Drive
Yifrodit Z. & Natenael Lema, Tufa Terrace

Kids In Need Distributors (KIND) Typically feeds children in Montgomery County on weekends who are enrolled in the Free and Reducedprice Meal System (FARMS). Since schools closed due to COVID-19, KIND needs your help to continue its work. You can donate or volunteer on KIND’s website.

The Capital Area Food Bank is continuing to serve our neighbors who need access to food during the COVID-19 pandemic, and is working with community partners to distribute food at nearby locations. The food bank is in urgent need of volunteers (special precautions are being taken to ensure volunteer safety), monetary donations and food donations.

Homeowner Maqsood Tariq was elected in January 2020 to a 3-year term on the SMHOA Board of Directors.

Maqsood Tariq fills vacancy left by long-time Board member Dennis Holden.

  • Andrew Rowley and Steven Shema, Hidden Valley Lane
  • Iman Romodan, Aquamarine Terrace
  • Samuel Eyassu, Tufa Terrace

Waking up your lawn can be challenging. Early spring is one of the best times of the year. Here
are a few tips for reviving your lawn after the beating it likely took this winter: feed it well, water in the morning, ease into mowing, start
fighting weeds, and seed thin spots. And don’t forget to add some flowers and small plants … this will get you in the mood for spring!

Association annual assessments are mailed out in December and payment is due by January 1. The good news is that the budget calls for no change in the annual homeowner assessment of $250, and the board will continue to offer a discount of the annual assessment - $220 – for owners who pay their assessment by January 31, 2021. This represents a savings of $30 (12% discount).

But what if you don’t pay your dues on time. After 30 or more days have passed without payment, you will receive a late notice. If you still do not pay you will be sent a Notice of Intent to place a lien on your property. This adds $80 or more. You will be given an opportunity to dispute the payment. Then, if you still don’t pay after 30 or more days, the lien cited in the Notice will be placed on your property at the court house. This results in your not being able to refinance or sell your home without paying SMHOA owed monies, plus additional legal fees of at least $200 or more including interest of 6% a year. So now you owe nearly $500 or more. If there is still no payment, a number of other
legal avenues are available to pursue collection. And collect we must as we are legally obligated by SMHOA legal documents to do so. So it sure looks like paying your dues on time is the way to go. If you are having problems paying,
you are encouraged to let Community Associations know … sometimes arrangements can be made to delay payment for a short period of time.

The board is working very hard to ensure that homeowners who pay on time do not have the burden of supporting those who do not. Sadly, there are still some homeowners who are several years behind, owing more than a thousand dollars per. This is not fair to the vast number of you who pay on time. Be advised that we’ve filed lawsuits to obtain outstanding assessments, with several having gone to court. We are determined to have all fees paid in a timely manner and will work with our attorneys, as needed, to do so.

Before doing exterior work to your home, please visit the SMHOA web site to see if a property improvement request (PIR) is needed. You will also be able to download the form to submit for approval of alterations and /or
Submitted by homeowner Becky Meadows, RE/MAX Success
Café coffee has been replaced by countertop coffee pot, and
commuting to work means going from bedroom to kitchen. Spending more time indoors right now may be shedding light on spots around the house prone to disorderly chaos. The average household is likely storing more supplies, paper goods, and groceries than usual to avoid frequent trips to the store – and possibly to accommodate more people living under one roof. If storage space seems maxed out, perhaps it’s time to reorganize for efficiency.

Here are 5 common areas in a household notorious for causing stress, and how to fix them once and for all.

1. Pantry and refrigerator
With more food staples on hand, now is a good time to clear everything off the shelves and put it all back in a stacked, organized and easy-to-reach manner. A pantry, or fridge, will have greater capacity – and be easier to navigate – once the contents have been rearranged to save space. Check dates for expired condiments, which hog room along the door shelves, and consolidate loose items like granola bars into boxes or jars so no snack gets left behind.

2. Underneath the bathroom sink
This location may not be causing stress, but its underutilized storage capabilities can help alleviate stress by clearing up space in other messy zones. The cabinet underneath the bathroom sink isn’t just for items like Band-Aids and plungers. Perhaps you have excess paper goods on hand – ahem, toilet paper – so optimize this area by stacking goods in the back you use less frequently and keeping common items toward the front. This hidden gem storage space is the perfect spot for concealing odds and ends.

3. Entryway
So many shoes by the door but nowhere to go! The entry way is likely cluttered with slippers, sneakers, as well as rain jackets and bags hanging on hooks. Store away items used infrequently and allow one pair of shoes per person to live by the door, moving the rest inside a closet – out of sight and out of mind.

4. Kitchen table
Is your kitchen table now functioning as a home office, place to eat, homework spot for kids, craft zone, etc.? By day, this multifunctional area is a hub of the house – so try to keep it as orderly as possible, not allowing clutter to linger when the workday or school day is done. Unless you’re in the midst of a great big puzzle, clear off the kitchen table at the end of each day so your house feels normal again when it’s time for rest and relaxation.

5. General dust and dirt
Even when order has been instilled upon shelves, countertops and closets, you may still be feeling stress from general dirtiness – especially if you have light-colored floors or carpet. Get in the habit of running a vacuum through high-traffic areas, like the living room, every few days so visible dirt never piles up. Though life is out of routine at the moment, stick to regular maintenance such as wiping down kitchen counter surfaces daily and giving the bathroom a good scrub on the weekends.
Submitted by homeowner Lynn Bufka

I read this article in Scientific American and wanted to share with our Board and community so that other homeowners might be inspired to create more sustainable yards. Fostering our wildlife and native plants is good for overall community health!

The Communications Committee is always looking for newsletter content. Send your ideas/input to Charles Lasky.

There are many different options for disposing of dog waste. Dog
waste is a major source of pollution and poses some significant hazards to humans from fecal coliform contamination of our water to the transmission of diseases such as salmonella and parasites
such as giardia.

The easiest way to dispose of dog waste is to first pick it up. Dog waste bags provide clean and sanitary ways to clean up the waste
and keep out of the everyday environment. Once your dog’s waste has been picked up and placed in a dog waste bag, there are three ways of disposing of the waste. Always to be sure to tie a strong knot in the bag so that it is contained and won’t fall or leak out (gross). As you read further, you’ll note that tossing the bag in tree boxes, on sidewalks, in the street, etc. are never options.

The first way of disposing of your dog waste bag is to place it in a trash can. The second method of disposal is to flush it down the toilet. However, flushing any bag down the toilet can only be done if the bags are water soluble. DO NOT flush the dog waste bag down the toilet unless you’re absolutely sure the bag is made from water soluble plastic. The third way to dispose of your dog waste is to compost it. If this is your chosen method of disposal, degradable bags will work, but to achieve the best compost, be sure to use compostable dog waste bags.
What's Happening in Your Community?
Submitted by neighbor Elias Boussouf
I am offering remote tutoring for middle and high school students in the Snowden’s Mill community in math, science, English, and Spanish. I graduated from Blake High School in 2018 and am currently an undergraduate at Johns Hopkins University studying biophysics. I am available for homework help, exam prep (AP, SAT, ACT) and any other tutoring needs. Contact me at or (301) 256-7075.

We recognize these are unprecedented times. On behalf of the SMHOA Board, thanks to all of our neighbors for practicing 6 ft. social distancing and for wearing face coverings when out and about. Your continued diligence not only protects you, but
protects your neighbors. Let’s keep up the care and concern. Stay safe and healthy!
Board of Directors:

  • Tracy Shahan, President
  • Earl Gamache, VP
  • Neil Pedersen, Treasurer
  • Becky Meadows, Secretary
  • David Golden
  • Mitiku Kelkay
  • Renu Simon
  • Maqsood Tariq

Snowdens Mill HOA is managed by:

Community Association, Inc.
15742 Crabbs Branch Way
Rockville, MD 20855

301-258-7711, ext. 160
Useful Telephone Numbers:

For medical and other emergencies, call 911. Following are other useful numbers:

  • County Info/services 240-777-0311
  • PEPCO (Outages) 877-737-2662
  • Miss Utility 800-257-7777
  • Missed Trash/Recycling 240-777-0311
  • Animal Control 240-773-5960
  • Poison Control 800-222-1222
  • Police Non-Emergency 301-279-8000
  • Street Light Outage 240-777-0311
  • Street Tree Damage 240-777-7623