We have planned three candidate sessions, beginning with (1) the candidates for the Republican May canvas for the Arlington County Board, approximately 7:45 - 8:30 p.m.; (2) the candidates for the Democratic June primary for the Arlington County Board, approximately 8:30 - 9:20 p.m.; and (3) the announced Independent candidates for the Arlington County Board, approximately 9:20 - 9:45 p.m. For each of the sessions, the candidates will have up to five minutes for opening statements, followed by a total of 30 minutes of questions. In order to promote increased public participation, individual questions will be limited to 30 seconds and candidate responses will be limited to 1 minute for each question. The first three questions for each session will be from BVSCA members, followed by questions from non-members or BVSCA members.
We need County Board members who can bring to Arlington planning strong business sense tempered by community concerns. We cannot afford to blunder too many projects like Home Depot or embarrass ourselves with business ignorant rhetoric on Business, Professional and Occupational License (BPOL) Tax reform. We cannot afford to let crime flourish in Arlington as it has in D.C. We need a County Board member who has the courage to tackle the hard problems. I will be a County Board member who will resolve these issues.
I respect your knowledge of the issues and I won't waste your time with the vague rhetoric babbled by the opposition. I will get straight to my focus:
For the past eleven years, Henriette V. Warfield has worked for Arlington-based Balmar Printing & Graphics were she currently serves as the Director of Marketing. Balmar has grown from a six person shop in Ballston to employ over 400 professionals. Today it is the largest commercial printing company in the Washington metropolitan region. "Understanding competition and constantly reevaluating services to meet a changing demand and new technology--which is my responsibility at Balmar--are the strengths my candidacy will bring to the County Board. Reactive thinking and acting with regard to economic development and services provided by our government has placed the County in seriousjeopardy when compared with our neighbors. I do not believe that doing business as usual with unrestrained tax increases gives the citizens and businesses who foot the bill the best government possible."
For the past 10 years Henriette Warfield has also been a key member of the Board of Director of the Ballston Partnership, and was elected President in 1992-3. The Ballston Partnership was the first public/private partnership established to create the new urban downtown for Arlington. Its success can be measured by the rich diversity of business, retail, educational institutions, senior citizens, and residents which now reside in Ballston. Three other partnerships in Arlington have followed the formula of the Ballston Partnership and are enriching their respective areas: The Rosslyn Renaissance, the Clarendon Alliance, and the Columbia Pike Revitalization Organization. "I deeply believe in the power of our American democracy, and is richly exemplified in Arlington through many civic, educational and religious volunteer efforts of citizens and business leaders."
Henriette Warfield is a single parent of a 13 year old son, Britton. Britton attended Abington Elementary School and Williamsburg Middle School and is a member of a local Boy Scout Troop. "Arlington offers our children a County rich with resources which I will work hard to protect and expand in my role on the County Board."
Ben proposed a single tax/budget date, giving the voters the opportunity to related the taxes assessed and the budget we adopt.
Ben has fought to improve crime prevention, to get more police on the streets, and to control increasingly dangerous juvenile gangs. This includes targeting at-risk youth to identify potential future offenders.
Ben has promoted greater efficiency in government operations, including restructuring of county operations to reduce waste and move decision making to the level closest to the citizens. Furthermore, Ben proposed to consolidate County and School vehicle maintenance, janitorial and building maintenance functions, and other support services to achieve economies of scale.
Ben proposed, supported and voted for local BPOL tax reductions, and promoted the establishment of economic development strategies, including the elevation of the Economic Development Office--and the Economic Development Commission--to a more visible position in the community. He proposed closer coordination among the partnerships, so that the successful partners like Ballston and Rosslyn could provide closer support for those that are struggling. He invited the business community to become more closely involved with the County Government to promote/private partnerships. He proposed the County develop a marketing strategy and package to help Arlington attract new business. He proposed ways to help us keep those businesses and agencies we now have in the community.
Ben is now, and will continue to be, accessible to the voters and citizens of Arlington. He will listen to your concerns, and act on them, just as he has in the past.
Ben will push for responsible budget, bonding, tax and spending practices, just as he has since his election. He has voted against unnecessary tax increases, and will continue to do so.
Ben has lived in the same house in Arlington for the past 24 years. He has experience as a manager and planner with the Federal Government, and is a Korean War Veteran. His wife, Mickey, is an Arlington County School teacher. They have two children attending Arlington Public Schools.
"As a Member of Congress... and as Alexandria's Mayor before that, I have known Al Eisenberg and the quality of his leadership... Three time Board Chairman. Al has the courage, integrity, and concern for people to keep Arlington one of America's great communities. I support him enthusiastically, and ask that you do too...
Al has a remarkable record of service... in 1992, he won the region's highest public service award.
With Al's leadership, Arlington offers top-quality services for the lowest taxes around. The County enjoys a rare AAA/aaa bond rating. Its offices are 94 percent full. Its unemployment rate is 3.2 percent, and 3000 net new businesses have come to Arlington since 1990. Arlington is a national model for managed growth and ranks among the nation's top 15 safest communities.
Al authored the housing advisory commission: serves as the region's prime advocate to curb urban sprawl: co-chaired the task force that created Arlington's recycling plan: ... sparked the regional anti-drug effort that led to "Drug-free School Zones": boosted the child immunization effort: expanded homeownership for Northern Virginians: and has championed civil and human rights.
Al believes in government that works with people, and is running on the platform of partnerships for a livable community. This theme encompasses economic health, environmental quality, and a community that cares about each of its residents.
On Tuesday, June 13, a Democratic Primary will choose two candidates to form the 1995 County Board ticket. Barbara Favola, Paul Ferguson, and Jill Rathbun--have endorsed Al's candidacy. On June 13, Al will need one of your votes...He's a wonderful Board member, and I hope he can count on you... Sincerely, James P. Moran, M.C."
As your County Board Member, I will strive to maintain Arlington as one of the best local governments in the country by focusing attention on four critical areas: enhanced public safety, neighborhood preservation, economic growth and investment in people.
The key to enhanced public safety is equipping a community with prevention tools. We must expand community policing and assist our families in their efforts to raise children who are responsible and civic-minded. Towards this goal, I propose to create an Arlington Youth Volunteers Corps.
Livable neighborhoods have open spaces and manageable traffic. As a member of the Planning Commission, I voted for the open space master plan and I consistently voted to require traffic management plans. I will be in a strong position to continue this work on the County Board.
I am committed to developing a strategic economic growth plan so that Arlington can keep pace with advancing technologies and more decentralized business operations. This must be done in an environment of low taxes, high quality services and good public schools.
We must continue to strive for affordable child care and accessible preventive health services. I realize that investing in people will help ensure a future in which all Arlingtonians have the opportunity to reach their full potential.
I believe that you share my vision and appreciate the professional, political and civic experience I bring to the task. I ask for your vote on June 13.
The urban corridor plan for Clarendon and Ballston creates a bold vision of a neighborhood of homes, public facilities, retail businesses, and restaurants organized around Metro access rather than the exclusive use of private passenger cars. A decision to allow light industrial use in the center of the corridor would destroy this vision. Land use decisions made on a case-by-case, or exception-by-exception basis, undercut our clear vision for communities in favor of a particular project. The County Board should resist this temptation.
My commitment to Arlington runs deeper than land use issues. This is my home. Since I graduated from Wakefield High School, I have been active in this community. As president of the Fairlington Citizens Association, I know how hard communities must work to create successful neighborhoods. As a member of the County Board, I will work to maintain the excellence of our police and fire departments and improve traffic controls so that neighborhoods can be safe.
I am committed to proper funding for our schools, policies that promote clean air and waste reduction, and continuation of the high-level services that make Arlington such a great place to live and work. I look forward to your support on June 13th.
By that I mean I will work to make our neighborhoods stronger and safer. We need to expand community-based policing, provide a high-quality education for every child in Arlington, improve youth programs, expand human services options and choices, improve our recycling and conservation programs, all the while remembering that diversity is our strength and should be celebrated.
We can create more opportunities in Arlington by bringing citizens, businesses, government and nonprofit organizations together to expand economic and social activity. The county needs a comprehensive marketing plan to attract high-growth industries, but we must also work to improve affordable housing, job training programs, and encourage mass transit use.
Our government must be responsible for its actions, open in its deliberations, and responsive to the needs of Arlington residents. I will sponsor an independent effort to establish performance standards and accountability measures for all government-funded programs. Together we will make sure our government meets or exceeds those standards in all areas.
As a member of the Arlington Human Services Commission, founder of a non-profit organization, and director of policy for the National Alliance to End Homelessness, I bring public, private and nonprofit sector leaders together each day to solve housing and human service problems. I know I have the experience and dedication to make a positive difference for our community on the County Board. I ask for your vote June 13th, and I look forward to working with you to build an even better Arlington.
This election is about a County Board that is trashing its land use plan with Home Depot, wasting citizens' time in endless meaningless meetings. It's about a County that lets its property values, schools, and public services decline, driving out the middle class; and squanders the citizens' soaring taxes on overpriced land deals, top-heavy staff, and illegal aliens.
It's about police response that runs to 90 minutes. Do you feel secure walking at night or shopping at Ballston Commons? It's about coddling ablebodied panhandlers while short-changing the truly needy. Have you been accosted at the Metro?
It's about sloppy ethics and cozy relationships between County officials, legislators, and judges. It's about a County government that needs reform from the top down, which major parties, obsessed with radical agendas, and candidates who do not know or choose to ignore the issues, cannot bring.
Please consider only the candidates' records, not our promises. As Planning Commissioner and civic association president, I have worked for 10 years to include citizens in land use decisions and to preserve neighborhoods. At every opportunity, I have voted against illegitimate land uses, like Home Depot; unjustified bonus density, land giveaways, and subsidized housing schemes like Pollard Gardens and Buckingham that primarily benefit only a few developers and are unjustly and illicitly concentrated in your area; George Mason's underparked expansion; and the wasteful Quincy Street extension.
I have also zealously supported the County's small businesses and legal minorities. I originated the application of the County's human rights ordinance to commercial sales, leases and rentals, and have favored tough hate crime legislation.
The major political parties exclude independents and public employees from endorsement for office. As a Federal employee, I cannot enter their primaries. I cannot even legally urge you to write in my name. Only your signatures can put me on the November ballot.
Please save one vote for an independent volunteers' crusade to restore confidence in Arlington's government and bring reform and fiscal sanity to it. I believe that I am the only moderate choice, committed to these goals. Let's send a message to both parties!
At the time, Staff wanted our Association's input into structuring the process by which the re-examination would be conducted. The re-examination would have concentrated solely on urban design concepts for the two areas. At this time, there is a prospective developer for the residential portion of the Stuart Park block--hence the park would remain in its presently proposed location, with the residential building being located adjacent to Wilson Boulevard.
With the Stuart Park block under serious consideration by a prospective developer, the remaining block for re-examination would be the site formerly proposed for the SEC. Based on conversations with community representatives, Staff agrees that an urban design process for this smaller area would not be appropriate and design of the block would be better addressed when a site is actually filed for the site. The normal site plan process includes review and input from the BVSCA, review by the Site Plan Review Subcommittee, Planning Commission, and the Board. If and when the County wished to start the process again, notification will be printed in the Newsletter.
The Arlington Blue Top Cab's owner, Mr. Farouq Massoud, has indicated previously to our Association that the primary contributing factor to the Arlington Blue Top Cab's proposed project is the Quincy Street extension project, which will force their existing taxicab repair facility in the path of the street extension to be relocated. Given that (1) Arlington County is not providing financial assistance for small businesses to relocate because of the Board's approval of the Quincy Street extension; and (2) this company has been an outstanding neighbor and has assisted our community in many ways, the civic association has previously recommended favorable support of the Arlington Blue Top Cab's proposed underground garage. The Association encourages interested citizens to attend the Planning Commission meeting of May 8, 1995 and County Board Meeting of May 20, 1995, and speak in support of Arlington Blue Top Cab's proposed project.
For your information, BVSCA received 70 responses to our neighborhood survey questionnaire conducted for a two week period ending October 15, 1994. Briefly, subsidized housing was frowned upon (64% opposed) as were homeless shelters (52% opposed to additional spending). There was almost an equally strong reaction against spending more County money on a proposed Day-Time Drop-In Homeless Shelter in our community with 78% of the respondents indicating that they would not support such projects. Only a small percentage of those completing the survey expressed a willingness for the County to spend more money for these issues: affordable housing (14%), subsidized housing (15%), and the homeless (22%).
The second issue concerns the lack of proper notice and coordination by the County's Department of Community Planning, Housing, and Development of their Draft Interim Consolidated Plan for FY 1996-1998 with our Association, despite our prior participation in the November 5, 1994, public forum on Housing Community Development. Executive Committee member, Secretary Ragland attended the joint public hearing held by the Community Development Citizens Advisory Committee and the Housing Commission on April 5, 1995, and expressed concern about the lack of formal notice given on the Draft Interim Consolidated Plan for FY 1996-1998 and the joint public hearing to discuss the plan. Also, concern was expressed about the lack of information from the County, after repeated requests by the Association, on the number and location of private and public affordable housing, transition homes, and other projects located in our community and Arlington County. No one at this meeting responded that they would coordinate this information with our Association.
In the letter of April 10, 1995, the Executive Committee asked that Chairman Eisenberg coordinate with County Manager, Anton Gardner, to authorize County staff to forward this information to our Association. The Executive Committee inquired in this letter whether the Arlington County Board has changed its policy, or position, on "Day Drop In Centers/Homeless Shelters," given that it voted on April 1, 1995 to authorize DHS to proceed with a $5.6 million grant application to HUD, which included funding for such a facility? The Executive Committee also expressed concern about the Draft Interim Consolidated Plan in the above letter. The following specific concerns about the draft plan were addressed.
The agenda item Background states the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has issued a notice of funding availability to increase the supply of transitional housing and supportive services. This funding cycle is targeted to serving persons who are sleeping in emergency shelters or on the street. Funding is designed to help communities fill the gaps in their continuum care of services for homeless people, and encourages a coordinated community planning process for doing so.
Further, the narrative states that since the Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA) was only recently issued and the application is not due until April 7th, planning between County staff and various community services providers is still taking place. HUD is strongly encouraging each jurisdiction to submit coordinated applications for the locality to fill gaps in its continuum of care of services. Projects that are under discussion at this time along with the three year projected cost (five year projected cost for the Rental Assistance for Persons with HIV/AIDS) include 11 items. Of these, the following may have potential impact on our community.
In responding, Ron Carlee, the Director, Department of Housing and Services (DHS), could not explain why the notice of funding had such a short timeframe and added, "I can't explain what HUD procedures are. What has been a pressure for us in our efforts to try to be highly competitive for this grant is putting together what is an ultimately umbrella community proposal. So what you have before you are both programs that we would normally see this high priority in terms of County funded programs, but we are also putting in an umbrella grant application for what our individual community organizations would have put independently on their own. So there is a mixture of programs here both of what we would typically do and what we would do in the private sector. One of the strong pushes behind this particular grant from HUD is that it addresses continuum homeless services. In our continuum homeless services in Arlington County as you well know, we operate a highly privatized system. Most of our services are actually provided by the private sector, some with government public support from local government, many other pieces without local government support. And what we have tried to do in this grant application in order to be competitive [with other local governments] is to include both of those types of proposals so that we would have a greater opportunity to be competitive. If you were to pull out any of the components of this which you could certainly do, then that organization, a non-profit organization, would then submit independently on it's own. We were trying to keep everybody together, so what we are trying to do is work with a wide range of different organizations as you see listed in the grant, pull together their best proposals consistent with what we have identified as the gaps before. Some of the things in here we would not recommend to you for County funding. But they're all legitimate needs in the community that seem reasonable for the private sector to seek Federal support on and do fill real gaps in the community."
Let me ask a couple of questions then I'll recognize Mr. Winslow, responded Chairman Eisenberg. "We have here before us an authorization request to submit applications, a group of them for up to $5.6 million for a 3 year supportive housing program. Extraordinary amount of money. What's the likelihood of achieving this kind of money?" "We honestly don't know, responded Ron Carlee. "We don't have a good reading on that. We're going for what was out there." Eisenberg: "Alright, now I gathered from your comments that private organizations could apply for such funds on their own." Carlee: "Yes, in fact, these are the proposals they could have submitted on their own." Eisenberg: "Well, is there not some kind of local sign off for the receipt and use of such funds?" Carlee: "There is a certification."
Eisenberg: Now the last question is, I understand what you were trying to do, just to single that one out, is a Day Drop In Center considered a part of McKinney Act money?" Alright, under the McKinney Act is a Day Drop In Center part of the continuum care?" Carlee: "Yes." Eisenberg: "We don't do that." Carlee: "That's correct and what we have looked to do is either to fill gaps in the continuum of care or to expand where we have inadequate services along continuing care." Eisenberg: "But, you understand the concern raised and the concern the Board would have about pieces of our continuum flying off by themselves."
Winslow: "Mr. Chairman, one of the things I am trying to figure out are we in competition with the private sector or voluntary agencies? Carlee: "This is with other jurisdictions but what we have done is pull together all of the private sector agencies under one umbrella and developed a single Arlington proposal." Eisenberg: "Which makes sense."
Winslow: "If somebody comes to me with a proposal to spend a great deal of money or to apply for a great deal of money, one of the first things I want to know, is what is the population being served and how many? I don't see that here. I want to know how much is it going to cost us? I don't see that here. I want to see what controls are there we have that we can apply. I don't see that here. How do we get that? How do we get to those ideas? How do we get to those factors? How many people are involved in outreach? I mean, how many people are we going to reach? How many people involved in the Safe Haven concept? How many people are going to be using the Day Drop In Center? What are we looking for? We don't have any of that here."
Carlee: "All of those are actually specifics that are contained in the grant application which literally Ms. Vera, our Homeless Coordinator has been working on all day today; and we will probably be working on until we have it hand delivered to HUD on the 7th, just given the time crunch. Now, if we receive any award and again it may be a completely mute issue, but if we receive an award, all of that would be available to the Board for your consideration, in accepting the grant and appropriation of the grant award."
Eisenberg: "Let's understand the legal issue here and I think it's important to underscore this. Receipt of money in no way implies expenditure, there may be an expectation of it. It must be appropriated under our authority." Carlee: "Correct."
Carlee: "One of the questions on the Day-Drop-In-Center for instance, is whether A-Span actually could find commercial space that it could lease in order to operate that program." Eisenberg: "You don't understand. That's not part of our policy. Right now, we have a policy that indicates that we do not favor that piece of the continuum care." Board member Mary Margaret Whipple responded that a private agency has the opportunity to provide a service that is not approved by the County Board."
Eisenberg: "This gets into some fine and yet critical points of public policy. Except that, we would be placed in a position of having an agency with money in hand, that we are supposed to certify and then in effect have the implementation of an activity of which we do not approve. Would use require a use permit of any kind?" Carlee: "It would depend on the zoning of the County... Eisenberg: "There you go. Mr. Carlee, this is crossing County policy lines and it has to do in this case, not just with a private organization that has a relationship with the County...We know that the organization does have an agenda in this regard. They want to do this, we don't want to do this for reasons that are philosophical, practical, we don't want to do this. So help me sort out an issue where you have Federal money, private organization and we have a thread of control over a policy we're concerned about."
Carlee: "I perhaps may have a misperception on what Arlington County policy is on this and that may be a source of part of the problem. My perception, my understanding of what County policy is, is that we have rejected explicitly a Day Drop In Center as it relates to the local government's support in funding around the emergency winter shelter. That's the policy format in which I recall in having that discussion. So it seems clear to me that in terms of local government funding for a Day Drop In Center, that the Board has expressed clearly it does not have an interest in doing that. I do not think the Board has gone on record as saying that a Day Drop In Center is not something that we consider explicitly as part of an appropriate continuum of care, even if it were provided by Federal funding. So in fact, that is the position of the Board, the appropriate thing to do would be to actually exercise that policy expression related to this and to ask that this be deleted from the grant application."
Eisenberg: "Alright, because if we have no policy in the context of private organizations use of HUD monies, then we can not act affirmatively to send something forward." Board member Hunter responded, "I think, I have a suggestion here how maybe we can get passed this item and on with our business. If we have control of the application which we do for each item? Perhaps, we could insert words to the effect, something like the site and operation of the Day Drop In Center would be subject to public hearing and County approval. Put it right in the application and make it very clear to all parties." That way if the funds are approved, those things would have to happen and if Mr. Eisenberg's reading of County policy is correct, that everybody is against the Day Drop In Center, well it just wouldn't happen."
Whipple: "Well, in my view, I think Mr. Carlee stated it correctly. I do not think it is our business to rule on whether a private organization can provide a service in this community. We don't do that. I do not think the County Board can take upon itself, to rule on every charitable activity in Arlington County and say well this meets with our agreement and that one doesn't. If this is a grant from the Federal government to a private organization, for a private activity, and we're simply serving as an accountability focus that seems to me, not in violation of our policy which is not to spend local funds. Now, if they required a use permit, well of course it would go through that process and then we can determine or not that was an appropriate use for that appropriate place and all the same kinds of land use issues and management and operation would come into play. That's an appropriate role of local government."
Winslow: "I'm just very concerned about this and I'm not sure that the problem is fixed. It sounds to me as though, assuming that an organization could find a place, they could do it by right. There would be no use permit, there would be no review by the community. It's an area that we have not supported. That plus the fact, there are no cost factors to us, there are no counts, there are darn few controls over this. I just have a lot of problems with it. I don't know why the drop dead day and I don't know why."
Eisenberg: "Let me raise a point here. We're not about to turn down if we can secure it, $4 or 5 million dollars to address our homeless problem. We would be nuts if we did. However, there are legitimate questions raised here that I have frankly never thought of. One of those questions has to do with the County's interest in community services, whether provided through County money, or state or local money. I don't know the answer to this, even with private money that runs counter to [our] philosophy of how we believe that charitable services should be provided."
Whipple: "But you can not take on management of every private organization in Arlington County. We have never done that, we don't do it. Our role is limited to the decisions of which we spend our money on, or our land use authority on those sorts of things. For a government to attempt to take on a role of approving the policy of private charitable organizations is not something we can do."
Eisenberg: "With all due respect, close but no cigar. The reason is let's take the issue of the Drop In Center itself. The way it has been described as I understand it, operationally it is a place that provides a variety of low maintenance services of bed, food, activities." Whipple: "Where they get case management type services." Carlee: "It would not include a bed."
Eisenberg: "Okay, no bed, locker, a place to drop things off, TV, whatever is there, low maintenance. No questions asked. A service provided you can be a guest, you can be inebriated, you could be on drugs. The problem is there is an operational issue here that we have decided that we don't want to see as part of the continuing care in our community." Whipple: "No, funded by the County." Eisenberg: "Funded by the County. But you have raised a question that I don't have an answer to, because it never occurred to me that a private organization would be able to access Federal funds to use that is not consistent with the County's own policy."
Winslow: "What I'm hearing here is once we get this grant, once we apply for it and get it, we have no control over certain aspects of it. Somebody wants to come in and use it, they can come in and use it." Eisenberg: " They may not under certain circumstances." Gardner: "I believe, that's not correct. If the grant is awarded, we will be recipients and we'll be able to control what happens under the grant." Eisenberg: "You've got several problems. The first is you've got to get something in the department. Millions of dollars of potential funding since Arlington is a County that is well known for using it's money well and having good programs. We have a reasonable and not better chance of getting this than anybody else. We're not going to turn down $5 million in Federal money if it's available to us for a need that we know exists and we have to provide for."
Hunter: "Mr. Chairman. All this does is simply keep our options open so I move that we authorize the manager to submit the applications that's shown on staff report." Eisenberg: "It has been moved, there's a second. Question is what is HUD going to do with an application that we'll still noodling about how we feel about pieces of it?"
Gardner: "I think they will review the application on it's face. Evaluate the various parts and then offer an award of grants in appropriate time, probably 6 to 9 months from now." If you get an award, I think it's unlikely you will get an award for the entire amount." Winslow: "Mr. Chairman, Every time somebody has come up to me and told me they've got the deal of the century for me and I've got to decide right now. I always found it paid off not to accept it, and this is one of those times. I'm going to oppose this one."
"Well, be careful with this, Chairman Eisenberg responded to Board member Winslow. "I don't want you to do anything you're going to be sorry for. If we delete this particular provision and they may be proposing something that is entirely consistent with what our policy is already is. Carlee: "I think we should just be open and honest in our application about it. Identify this is a matter that is under continuing policy discussion by the County Board and will be subject to full public review before it's actually implemented if County Board approves."
Eisenberg: "One last question because I would like to get Mr. Winslow's vote on this and be comfortable myself with the issue and I think I understand his view. Mr. Winslow, I don't think you want to be placed into a position of voting against the reasonably possible receipt of $5 million or more than $2,3,4,5 million dollars of money to address a problem that we all agree is a problem and needs addressing. So can you provide some words that may help Mr. Winslow and comfort me at the same time?" Hunter: "Well, I can." Eisenberg: "Well, will you do that?"
Winslow: "I don't know, how can I support something I don't know what I'm going to be spending money on. I'm applying for money that I don't know what I'll be spending on, how I'm going to be spending it and whose going to be spending it for me." Eisenberg: "I want to solve that problem." Hunter: "As I've already said, that if we got the whole thing approved, we don't have to spend a penny of it. I understand your concern because I have the same problem, we just got this information. I want to read one thing to you, that is the item on transitional housing that this provides good development of a good transitional living program for battered women, who would otherwise have to return to their abusers. This program would lease 8 apartments in Harvey Hall, administered by the Arlington Community Temporary Shelters, costs $360,000. I don't want to be in a position of voting against that and I doubt if you do."
Eisenberg: "Let's make a statement that in applying, the Board reserves the right to renew each specific item and render a specific decision in that regard and in respect to that, we have the authority to do that?" Gardner: "Yes, you do." Eisenberg: "Will that satisfy you?" Winslow: "As long as we have control, the dispersal of funds and we approve." Eisenberg: "We have something that locks the gate or opens it." Winslow: "Yep." Carlee: "It's not a problem." Eisenberg: "It's not a problem. It's on record." Winslow: "I've heard they are famous last words." Whipple: "You may lose my vote. I guess I'll go along with it."
Eisenberg: "Nobody on this Board wants to turn down the opportunity for the Federal government to provide funds for a need that we know has to be addressed. We do reserve the right to make decisions about the specifics of the dispersal of the funds." Winslow: "If you handed me a burlap sack with a rattlesnake in it, I'm going to be real cranky." Eisenberg: "You open it." Carlee: "There is nothing in this grant that can go forth, let alone go forth without coming back to this Board for a full review, public discussion, and specific appropriation of the funds. Winslow: "That has to be clearly spelled out in the application." Carlee: "Absolutely." Eisenberg: "Moved and Seconded. Further comment? Hearing none, all in favor of the motion, please say aye. Motion Carries."
Nancy Iacomini, the BVSCA NCAC representative, represented the civic association on this item. Nancy Iacomini testified about the extra 2 feet on the Stuart Street, the civic association's prior position on this site plan, and the civic association's response to this item. As to the extra 2 feet on the Stuart Street side, Nancy Iacomini indicated that the civic association is on record back in 1990 when the original site was done as to requesting more parking, more temporary parking, and pull-off-parking because of deliveries and things in this area. Ms. Iacomini read a paragraph from the May 17, 1990 letter, which stated, "The applicant has not included sufficient on site temporary service parking to meet the needs of short term, quick entry egress residential facility for the size proposed." The civic association asks the Board to include a site plan condition requiring the developer to put in 4 additional surface level temporary parking spaces along the northern portion of North Stuart Street, such that the spaces are oriented towards the residential facility. This could be accomplished by recessing the sidewalk around the northern boundary of the cul de sac on North Stuart Street, south of N. 11th Street. Since we have 2 extra feet there it would be the civic association's desire to have that done.
Also, Ms. Iacomini indicated that she and a resident of the Windsor, met with the applicant on Wednesday evening before the civic association meeting to discuss the possible landscaping, and we had thought about planters attached to the building. And that really at that time didn't seem feasible. We did discuss the possibility of some round concrete planters, perhaps in the area that could contain seasonable flowers that could be watered easily with a hose. Further, Ms. Iacomini indicated that she had raised the issue of street trees and inquired what trees were going to be planted along the perimeter of 11th Street as well as their proximity to the lights. We have had some problems actually in January. We had 3 or 4 assaults on different winter evenings when women were walking from the Metro back in the 11th and Taylor Street areas. Even in the winter time, the bare branches of trees obscure the lights. At this time, we're getting a NCAC project to upgrade the lights to a higher voltage on Taylor, 11th and Stuart Streets. But just in anticipation of problems, perhaps the County could work with the applicant and change the character of the trees, it might help the area.
One last thing we talked about is curb cuts. One of our members brought up that there didn't seem to be a way to have wheelchair access from 11th Street down Stuart Street. Indeed, public works went out on Friday, looked at the site, the drawings, and found there needs to be a curb cut from 11th Street, where 11th Street and Stuart intersect. That would allow people access up to the sidewalk. At this point, that sidewalk because of the construction of the building does not meet the existing brick sidewalk on the other side of the cul de sac. Now we just ask to make sure that the applicant, when the transition of the sidewalk comes, has a gentle slope that allows good wheelchair access around those cul de sacs.
Federation delegates asked a number of questions about the status of certain bills, and inquired about the elected representatives views on various issues. These included aggressive panhandling; Initiative and Referendum; Virginia's allocation process for transferring state funds to local jurisdictions, and putting Virginia's legislative proceedings on the information superhighway, Internet. Also, discussed was the recently approved bill sponsored by Delegate Connally to require the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles to provide a driver's license number other than the licensee's social security number upon request, in order to reduce the risk of social security confidential information being compromised or used for fraudulent purposes. Consequently, a person's social security number will not have to appear on a driver's license effective September 1, 1995. For additional information, the Executive Committee encourages members to watch the video tape of this meeting on Arlington Cable TV, Channel 33, at the following times. If you do not subscribe to Cable TV Arlington, the Executive Committee plans to provide additional coverage of this meeting in the next issue of the Newsletter.
Five members of the Arlington General Assembly delegation, including Senator Robert L. Calhoun (R), Senator Janet D. Howell (D), Senator Edward M. Holland (D), Delegate Judy Connally (D), and Delegate Karen Darner (D) discussed the highlights of the 1995 Virginia General Assembly session at the Arlington County Civic Federation meeting of April 11, 1995.
According to "Panhandler bill passes County Council," by the Washington Times on March 22, 1995, page C6, the plan, approved in an 8-0 vote, will restrict panhandlers from touching the person being solicited without his consent, following the person after he refuses a donation, using profane or abusive language, or blocking someone's path. Doing so could cost the violator as much as $300 and 30 days in jail.
A coalition of homeless advocacy groups, business leaders, civic activists and police actively promoted the bill, which resembles existing laws in the District, Baltimore and Alexandria. Council member Ike Leggett, at-large Democrat, abstained, "saying he opposed the bill's restrictions on panhandlers' First Amendment rights to free speech." Similarly, at the Arlington County Civic Federation meeting of April 11, 1995, Delegate Karen Darner expressed similar concerns and opposition to establishing an aggressive panhandling ordinance in Arlington County.
If you have any questions about this issue, or if you have any questions about the Arlington County Board candidates' views on this subject or others, we invite you to bring them to the next Membership meeting on Wednesday, April 26, 1995, at the Arlington Renaissance Hotel, Gallery Room 1, 2nd floor conference room.