Montgomery County officials OK planning for pandemic center

ROCKVILLE, Md. (AP) — Officials in Maryland’s largest county have approved funds to develop a business plan for a new center on pandemic prevention and biodefense.

The Montgomery County Council approved $500,000 on Tuesday to support a $2.5 million strategy phase for the center with Connected DMV, a regional nonprofit that focuses on challenges across the Washington metropolitan area.

A site exploration team will work to identify a site location in the county for the center in the coming months.

The county council said in a statement that the aim of the center would be to identify and launch strategic projects needed to advance pandemic avoidance and preparedness.