2018 Final HoCo BOE 13 Candidate List

There are 13 Board of Education candidates (We need elect 8 for the primary on Tuesday 6/26/2018 and elect 4 on Tuesday 11/6/2018). School board member has a part time job, but the work is tremendously important to our community. Their work can help us strengthen our school system and guarantee a quality education for all of our children on this county.

I will be your candidate who listens to you, seeks common ground and makes sound and practical judgements.

Here is the list of 2018 HoCo BOE candidates and I will highlight how I know them before.

Candidate Website Background
Chao Wu www.chaowu.org It is me, an engineer and analyst, a Board Member of Columbia Association and River Hill Village Association
Sabina Taj sabinataj.org Adjunct Professor at Howard Community College
Mavourene Robinson none CAC member, used to be River Hill Village Board Member
Saif Reihman www.vote4rehman.com A private business owner
Carleen Pena none CAC member
Anita Pandey www.anitapandeyboe.org Professor from Morgan State University
Robert Miller http://www.miller4boe.org Retired HCPSS teacher, ran BOE in 2016
Jen Mallo votejenmallo.com CAC member. I knew her husband through BOE Operating Budget Review Committee meetings before.
Danny Mackey dannymackey.org HCPSS graduate
Christopher Michael Hilfiger hilfigerforboe.com none
Timothy Hodgson Hamilton hamiltonforboe.com none
Bog Glascock www.bobglascock.org retired HCPSS teacher
Vicky Cutroneo none ran BOE in 2016, current PTAC president

Here CAC stands for Community Advisory Committee for HCPSS. When I wrote the article around 9:30PM tonight, we had only twelve candidates. Now we got the 13th candidate:Vicky Cutroneo.

Summary of CA Board Meeting of 2018-2-22

Resident Speakout:

Judy Neckrite., from River Hill, advocating for Columbia Arts Center

Crissy Simpson, advocating for the Columbia Arts Center

Percy, advocating for Columbia Arts Center

Anne Misita, for Columbia Arts Center

Elisabeth Hoffman, advocating for Arts Center

Tim Lattimer, celebrating his Birthday tonight with supporting the Climate Change and Sustainability Advisory Committee.

Joel, Hurewitz, supporting the Climate Advisory Committee, and a state house bill HB 1568, and a bill in the state house (Public Service Companies – Facility Equipment – Removal, http://mgaleg.maryland.gov/webmga/frmMain.aspx?id=HB1568&stab=01&pid=billpage&tab=subject3&ys=2018RS) , taking about how CA should deal with many more competitions from other fitness providers for similar services CA offer.

Nina Basu, chair of Long Reach Village Board,  supporting a phased-in Orchard Plan for mixed use village center. They want to make sure Columbia Arts Center stay.

President’s Report:

The CA development tracker is back online and Long Reach Tennis Court will be available by March.

Board Votes:

  1. The Annual Charge rate of $0.68 and cap of 3.5 percent proposed for the FY 2019 and conditional FY 2020 budgets.  The board approved this rate and cap.   (My amendment to reduce annual charge rate from $0.68 to $0.65 failed.  I will keep pushing to lower the annual charge rate.)
  2. Rates for memberships, daily fees and admissions for Sport and Fitness facilities, School Age Services monthly rates and rates for Open Space Management facilities.
    1. The board failed Gregg’s amendment (%10 reduction of membership fee).
    2. The board failed Gregg’s amendment (holding the membership fee the same as 2018 year, i.e., holding the 2.5% increase of membership fee)
    3. The board tabled Gregg’s amendment ( re-define the family membership to include single parent family).
    4. The board tabled Gregg’s motion from 4-13.
  3. The proposed FY 2019 Capital Budget
    1. Ginny motioned to add a condition on 1 million dollar investment on the Haven on the Lake. The motion was approved.
    2. Nancy motioned to take out 250,000 (put 100,000 in 2020 as placeholder) from Lakefront Master Plan Design. and The motion was approved.
    3. I made a motion to remove the money from village sign replacement of 135,000 in 2019 and 53,000 in 2020. The motion passed.
  4. The proposed FY 2019 Operating Budget
    1. The board made conditions to give money to Inner Arbor Trust. The CA board need to approve the pathway plan to give IAT money.
    2. The board approved the amended 2019 operating budget.
  5. The board approved the proposed conditional FY 2020 Capital Budget
  6. The conditional FY 2020 Operating Budget . The board approved it.
  7. The board approved the amended charter for the Climate and Sustainability Advisory Committee.

The meeting ended around 11:50 PM. We had not had such a long meeting for a while.



Incompetent FBI and racial profiling from FBI

I believe FBI Director Christopher Wray will be in history demise. His agency could not prevent mass shooting in Florida high school even with early warnings, could not prevent Boston Marathon Massacre even with repeated warnings, and self involved in the Russian meddling in US election illegally, now categorized the whole Chinese “covertly gathering intelligence for the Chinese government”.

I also blame Florida senator Marco Rubio to create this McCarthy mentality. The news is here : http://www.businessinsider.com/china-threat-to-america-fbi-director-warns-2018-2

Here is the reaction from Committee of 100.

Committee of 100 Denounces Broad Brush Stereotyping and Targeting of Chinese Students and Academics

(New York, NY, February 16, 2018) — In recent remarks to the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee, FBI Director Christopher Wray opined that Chinese academics or “non-traditional collectors” — “professors, scientists, students” studying and working in the United States in “basically every discipline” — may be covertly gathering intelligence for the Chinese government. The Committee of 100 (C100), a non-partisan organization of illustrious Chinese Americans committed to promoting constructive dialogue and relationships between the peoples and leaders of the U.S. and China, and the full inclusion of Chinese Americans in the U.S., finds these comments to be disturbing and prejudicial. To target a whole group of people as being subject to greater suspicion, based purely on race and national origin, and in advance of any facts or evidence, goes against the fundamental American ideals of the presumption of innocence, due process and equal protection for all. It also fans the flames of hysteria.

We have seen instances in our history when Asian Americans have encountered such racial prejudice resulting in discriminatory laws and harmful actions, whether through the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882 or the internment of 110,000 Japanese Americans during World War II. These incidences have been shameful chapters in American history, ones that we must collectively, as a nation, commit to not repeating. We need to learn the lessons of history, we need to do better by one another.

The Committee of 100 is unequivocally committed to America’s national security and recognizes the importance of ensuring our nation is able to counteract perils from espionage. However, C100 supports fair and appropriate investigation, prosecution, and punishment of espionage that is based on the evidence and not on profiling or suspicion based on race, ethnicity, or national origin. Within the last two decades, we have seen this rush-to-judgement in the cases of Dr. Wen Ho Lee, Dr. Xiaoxing Xi, and Ms. Sherry Chen — all Chinese American scientists or federal employees who were unjustly prosecuted based on suspicion of their ancestry, but who were later found to be innocent of wrongdoing, though not before having their lives ruined.

“For over 160 years, despite the stereotype of being ‘perpetual foreigners’, Chinese immigrants, many of whom first arrived as students, have contributed immeasurably to the richness and success of the United States, including 8 Chinese Americans winning Nobel prizes in the sciences while working in America,” notes Frank H. Wu, Chairman of C100. “In every field from the arts to the sciences, business to entertainment, politics to sports, Chinese Americans are loyal and hard-working citizens no different than their neighbors.”

At this time when there is great potential for polarization and misunderstanding, C100 cautions against stoking fears through broad-brush stereotyping of any group of people. As Americans, we need to speak up and renew our commitment to upholding our cherished principles of the presumption of innocence and due process for all.

The Committee of 100 (C100) is a non-profit leadership organization of prominent Chinese Americans in business, government, academia, and the arts. Founded by world renowned architect I.M. Pei and internationally acclaimed cellist Yo-Yo Ma, among others, it is an institution for U.S. citizens of Chinese heritage to join by invitation based on their extraordinary achievements. For over 25 years, C100 has served as a preeminent organization committed to the twin missions of promoting full participation of Chinese Americans in all aspects of American life, and encouraging constructive relations between the peoples of the United States and Greater China. www.committee100.org


联系人: 百人会政策总监李茸
media@committee100.org 或 212-371-6565
(美国纽约州纽约市,2018年2月16日) — 在最近一次美国联邦参议院情报委员会的听证中,联邦调查局局长克里斯托弗·雷(Christopher Wray)表示,在美国“几乎所有领域”中均有“教授、科研人员、学生”在学习和工作;这些或可称之为“非传统的情报收集人员”的中国学者有可能秘密地在为中国政府收集情报。百人会(Committee of 100)作为一个致力于促进中美两国人民和领导层之间建设性对话关系,并以全面促进华裔美国人融入美国社会为己任的无党派杰出美籍华人组织,认为以上这种言论非常令人不安、指责过分标签化且存在着十分不必要的偏见。在摆出任何事实和证据之前,仅以纯粹的种族和出生地就对一个群体发出如此巨大的怀疑,这种行为不但违背了无罪推定、正当程序以及平等保护等美国宪法的根基理念,也容易煽动歇斯底里的不当情绪。





百人会(简称:C100)是由杰出美籍华人组成的非营利组织,成员来自商界、政界、学界及各艺术领域,由蜚声全球的建筑大师贝聿铭及大提琴演奏家马友友等人发起成立,会员依据个人杰出成就凭邀请入会。成立近30年来,百人会汇集其杰出会员的集体力量,始终致力于其两大使命,即推动美籍华人在美国社会生活中的全面参与,促进美国及大中华地区间建设性关系的发展。更多信息: www.committee100.org.


Meet your candidate twice in February

I am inviting you to meet your HoCo BOE candidate Chao Wu at the following two events:

First One:

Time: Monday 7:00-9:00PM, February -19- 2018

Location: The Marchand Room of Kahler Hall, Village of Harpers’ Choice

Address: 5440 Old Tucker Row, Columbia, MD, 21044

Pizza and drinks will be provided. Kids are welcome.

Second One:

Time: 7:00PM-9:00PM, Wednesday, Februrary-21-2018

Location: The Jeffers Hill Neighborhood Center, Village of Long Reach

Address: 6030 Tamar Dr, Columbia, MD 21045

Pizza and drinks will be provided. Kids are welcome.


2018 CA Budget Public Hearing (The Villager, 2018-02)

2018 Columbia Association Budget Public Hearing Summary and Other News

The article will be published in the River Hill “The Villager”, 2018 February Issue.

Columbia Association News

The Columbia Association’s (CA) board of directors has been discussing the 2019-2020 budget for several months and held a budget public forum on January 18.

During the public forum, the CA board heard the following testimonies:

  1. One village association asked for specific facility upgrades and funding for special programs. They also expressed dissatisfaction with the assessment share and contingency fund decisions made by the CA board earlier in the budget process.
  2. Several organizations asked for continued support of the Columbia Council of Arts and the Columbia Downtown Partnership.
  3. The Howard County Pickleball Association asked for support of pickleball activities by sharing courts with tennis court or building a dedicated indoor pickleball court.
  4. The CA Aquatics Advisory Committee requested a new 25-yard indoor swimming pool. In 2017, CA and Howard County conducted a joint study for 50-meter pool and could not find an appropriate location.
  5. Several people and organizations, either supported or opposed CA giving more than $500,000 to Inner Arbor Trust for pathway construction in Symphony Woods. A playground in Symphony Woods was also discussed. For information purposes, a 1-acre playground costs around one million dollars.

The CA board is expected to vote on the budget at the February 22 board meeting. The board would still like to hear your input. Send your comments to: Board.Members@ColumbiaAssociation.org.

River Hill News

Dalia Shlash, the River Hill board’s open space liaison, held a community meeting on January 18 to discuss site selection and upgrades for two tot lots in River Hill. Based on feedback from residents and CA, the Indian Summer Drive tot lot (RH25) and the River Run tot lot (RH4) are the locations that the association will likely recommend to CA for upgrades. The Association did hear from residents requesting upgrades to the South Wind Circle tot lot (RH22). The Association will consider requesting upgrades to this tot lot in a future phase.

The River Hill community association continues to actively share its views on the River Hill Square and Erickson Senior Living developments near the village.

Chao Wu, Ph.D.

River Hill Representative to Columbia Council and Columbia Association Board of Directors

Email: superbwu@gmail.com Website: http://www.chaowu.org

Disclaimer: This letter only represents Dr. Chao Wu’s personal opinion. It does not represent River Hill Board of Directors nor Columbia Association’s Board.

2017-2018 Report of the Commission on the Future of HCC

It was my great honor to serve on the 2017-2018 Commission on the Future of Howard Community College. I participated in the “Building Global Competence” Task Force. I believe the success of HCC is a success for Howard County.

Here are the recommendations from our task force:

HCC comission on the future p1.JPG

HCC comission on the future p2

HCC comission on the future p3

Here is the link to the whole report: http://www.howardcc.edu/about-us/mission-and-strategic-plan/commission-on-future/documents/January_2018FinalReport.pdf

I am attaching a copy here too: The report of Commission on the Future of HCC 2017-2018