The new $6 million Damascus Community Library at 9701 Main St. is scheduled to open in early September. The facility also will house senior citizen and day-care centers.

The old Damascus library operated from 1973 until last month in a nearby shopping center.

Before the old library closed, an unusual program allowed patrons to check out up to 75 books each, keep them for up to 11 weeks and return them to the new library when it opens.

Senior librarian Joan Deacon said the "adopt a shelf" program has been such a success that 31,847 items, or more than half of the old library's stock, were checked out during the last two weeks it was open.


Town Council members rejected a proposal by Mayor George Borsari Jr. that would allow him to approve town contracts of more than $1,000.

Borsari, who now has the power to approve contracts for goods and services of less than $1,000, had proposed a town charter amendment extending that authority for contracts of up to $15,000 to $20,000.

In other news, the town has discontinued newspaper recycling pickups because the company collecting the newspapers, Southwest Recycling, would no longer collect the materials free of charge. Southwest, citing declining newspaper resale prices, had proposed a monthly charge of $1.25 per household for its service.


Rockville will be one of about 7,000 communities nationwide participating Tuesday evening in the National Night Out program.

The annual one-day event, when residents turn on front porch lights or hold block parties, is a symbolic or stand against crime. The activities emphasize that lighting and an outdoor presence of residents are effective in helping to fight crime.

In other news, the Rockville Police Department began a police bicycle patrol last week. Two officers will ride through the city's streets, parks, alleys and other places that might not be as easily accessible by police car.

The two officers also will enforce traffic and parking regulations. Like all city officers, they will carry a gun and a portable radio.