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Federation of Citizens Associations of the District of Columbia

Federation News

Volume 4, Issue 1, September 1998
1642 Thirty-fifth Street, N.W., Washington, DC 20007-2334
(202) 337-6505, phone; (202) 337-6504, fax

Redesigning the District’s future: A strategic plan for economic development and wide-ranging new regulatory proposals
New regulatory reform proposals: What became of the “Brimmer orders”?
Associations in the news: Bridges over friendly waters
Speaking of elections
Officers and board
President’s column
ANCs: Funding them, filling them
Voting rights lawsuit continues
New asset in downtown development: The Horseshoe Alliance is formed
Community-based residential facilities: Still a serious concern
Federation meeting dates for the program year

Tuesday, September 29 at 7 p.m.
Federation Assembly Meeting
Business Meeting

Lloyd Jordan
Director, Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs

The new DCRA director will share plans for strategic changes in this critical agency, and will take questions about particular concerns of citizens and associations.

The Charles Sumner School
1201 Seventeenth Street NW (at M)

REDESIGNING THE DISTRICT’S FUTURE: A strategic plan for economic development and wide-ranging new regulatory proposals

Rarely has the District seen so many planning and forecasting activities occurring — all at once.

In addition to the critical work being done to amend the District's Comprehensive Plan (which will wend its way through City Council this fall), there are very active efforts being undertaken by the Control Board to develop a Strategic Plan that will be presented at an Economic Summit on November 12.

Funded by a $250,000 special Federal appropriation, the effort is being directed for the Control Board by Richard Monteilh, Director of the Department of Housing and Community Development. (Monteilh's senior advisor for the strategic plan sessions is Federation Board member and Southwest Neighborhood Assembly delegate Marc Weiss.)

The “industry networks” began meeting earlier this month, and “cross-cutting policy working groups” are now beginning to meet to identify common goals that affect most or all groups. Contact information is below; delegates involved in these areas of study are encouraged to participate.

The efforts of these several working groups will build upon existing economic development activities such as the new Washington D. C. Marketing Center, the Washington D.C. Partners in Homeownership, D. C. Agenda’s Workforce Preparation Task Force, the Community Development Support Collaborative, and a number of other efforts now under way.

In addition, the District's Office of Planning will be holding a public meeting to discuss the Downtown Action Plan on Thursday, September 24 (see box below).

In commenting on the development of the strategic plan, Control Board Chair Dr. Alice Rivlin expressed her firm belief that voices from throughout the community should be part of economic development, not just the downtown business core. She particularly cited the need to bring economic development into neighborhoods and communities throughout the District.

Dr. Rivlin was asked at a recent meeting of the Committee of 100 on the Federal City about her view of these “task force’ approaches, as opposed to the establishment of a broad Planning Commission (the likes of which are in place in nearly all major cities).

Rivlin indicated she was very open to proposals for how such a Commission might be structured and how it could contribute to the on-going planning process in the District. The Federation News will report on any such proposals.

The current work of the task forces created by the Department of Housing and Community Development also needs to be linked to proposals for regulatory reform (profiled in part on page 3), and linked to internal departmental strategic reforms.

The Federation’s September speaker, Lloyd Jordan, will describe the process for new strategic planning under way at the bug-troubled Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs.

Recommended by Chief Management Officer Camille Barnett and appointed by Mayor Marion Barry, Jordan comes to the District from St. Louis, Missouri, where he was the city's chief of staff and chief administrative officer, as well as chairman of the St. Louis Development Corporation.

He earned his law degree at the St. Louis University School of Law and his undergraduate degree in computer science and applied mathematics at Washington University School of Engineering.

Jordan will profile for Federation delegates and their guests the process that is now underway at DCRA to do more than improve the agency, but to rebuild it. Residents can only hope for quick success.

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Strategic Economic Development Plan
Cross-cutting policy working groups

1. Strategic industries/business promotion. Chair: Scott Bolden 414-9266, Staff: Kwasi Holman 638-7339, Next meeting: September 25,2-4 pm*

2. Strategic industries/business climate. Chair: Gregory Fazakerley 833-3300, Staff: Gail Edwards 966-8665, Next meeting: September 23, 10- 12 noon*

3. Strategic populations/workforce development, Chair: John McKoy 223-2592, Staff: Tom Kingsley 261-5585, Next meeting: September 24,2-4:30 pm*

4. Strategic populations/attracting and retaining residents, Chair: Norris Dodson 882-2121, Staff: Bill Jameson 535-1307, Next meeting: September 23, 9-11:30 am*

5. Strategic areas/downtown, Chair: Robert Gladstone 393-1999, Staff: Rich Bradley 638-3232, Next meeting: September 22,2-4 pm*

6. Strategic areas/neighborhoods, Chair: Albert Hopkins 889-5100, Staff: Oramenta Newsome 785-2908, Next meeting: September 28,12 -2 :30 pm*

*Call for meeting location; all are downtown.


Hospitality/Entertainment/Tourism/Specialty Retail. Chair: Bill Edwards 483-3060, Resource: Barbara Wolfson 362-4051.

Media/Publications. Chair: Austin Kiplinger 887-6450, Resource: Todd Mason 408-0900

Universities/Educational/Research Institutions. Chair: Charlene D. Jarvis 646-0151

Biomedical Research/Health Services. Chair: John Green 877-7803, Resource: Robert Malson 289-4926

Business / Professional/Financial/Associations Services. Chair: Sandy Fitz-Hugh 624-4518, Resource: Whayne Quin 457-7836.

Information Technology/Telecommunications. Chair: Marie Johns 392-3700, Resource: Pedro Alfonso 944-8787

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New regulatory reform proposals: What became of the "Brimmer orders"?

In the June Federation News, we profiled the “Brimmer orders” for regulatory reform issued by the Control Board in what were expected to be the final days of Chairman Andrew Brimmer.

Because Chairman Brimmer’s term was extended for 90 days in order to arrange for a calmer transition between Control Board teams, this summer saw a real possibility that the proposed regulations and executive orders were going to be enacted on August 25, with virtually no opportunity for public comment.

Many civic organizations and ANCs pined the Federation's effort to postpone such dramatic action, in order to allow for citizens’ input.

The Control Board agreed, and extended the comment period in several steps, finally extending it until October 1. A general review of the ways in which the proposals affect individual property owners, neighborhoods, and small businesses is contained in the following box.

Federation delegates will be voting on the overall proposal during the business portion of the September 29 meeting. Detailed analysis is available from Board members or from President Zartman.

We urge everyone to consider how these proposals will affect their own areas and make comments reflecting these concerns. Those comments should be addressed to:

Daniel A. Rezneck, General Counsel D. C. Financial Responsibility and Management Assistance Authority, One Thomas Circle NW, Washington, D. C. 20005

Cutoff for comment Is October 1.

Consistent principles* for all new regulations:

Oppose provisions that would harm communities by:


Found missing:

*plus principles outlined in President’s Message

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Associations in the News: Bridges over friendly waters

Recently, the Current Newspaper carried a story about the partnership that has developed between two Federation member associations, the Hillcrest Community Civic Association and the Palisades Citizens Association.

It was a very good story, about how the two groups were sharing organizational information, approaches to pint concerns, and the very experience of learning more about one another. But just as good was the letter to the editor of the Washington Post that the associations’ officers prepared in response to suggestions by Mayor Barry that voters should pick candidates in the November general election because of their race. Excerpts from the letter signed by Penny Pagano and Miles Steele follow:

More than a year ago, our two community organizations — the Palisades Citizens Association in Northwest ... and the Hillcrest Community Civic Association in Southeast, formed a partnership with specific goals. We wanted to interact with other communities in our city, discuss common issues, and find new ways to move our neighborhoods forward together ... We have learned that the city's scenic rivers and parks create natural barriers, much as people have created others by not communicating. The result has been many misperceptions about tour neighborhoods and our wards.

But no more. A growing number of city residents understand that the best way to go forward is to go together to have one city and one people.... Building bridges will get us a lot further than tossing racial insults. It's not about the color of one's skin, but rather the content of their character. D. C. residents have a choice - and an obligation — to cast their votes to elect our city officials.... We hope the mayor will join the rest of us in going forward ...

Kudos to Miles and Penny — and the organizations they represent. Other organizations interested in similar partnerships might talk with Miles and Penny or Alice Stewart, Palisades vice president and our Federation Secretary.

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Speaking of elections ...

Recent press accounts tell quite a story about what it takes to run for public office across the District. Analyzing what was spent by each major candidate for Mayor and how many votes were received, the Washington Times computed the cost-per-vote for the top five as follows:

Anthony Williams, $14.53
Kevin Chavous, $12.79
Jack Evans, $76.52
Harold Brazil, $67.69
Jeffrey Gildenhorn, $2,724.00 (sic).

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Thursday, September 24, 6:30 p.m.
MCI Center Practice Court
Use F Street entrance at 7th Street
To update the Downtown Plan Element of the Comprehensive Plan, update and refine plans for Mt. Vernon Square, southern Shaw, north of Massachusetts Avenue, and the residential neighborhoods adjacent to the new Convention Center

Officers and Board

Patrick Allen, Citizens Association of Georgetown, 337-8760
Gracie Baten, Shepherd Park Citizens Association, 882-6162
John Batham, West End Citizens Association, 628-3527
Allen Beach, Chevy Chase Citizens Association, 362-2239
Larry Chatman, 16th Street Heights, 291-7381
Dino Joseph Drudi, Michigan Park Citizens Association, 526-0891
Kay Eckles, Residential Action Coalition, 265-5961
Guy Gwynne, Burleith Citizens Association, 338-5164
M. R. Peggy Snyder, Chancery Court, 338-1972
Miles Steele III, Hillcrest Community Citizens Association, 582-7832
Kathy Sternberg, Kalorama Citizens Association, 328-4806
Alice Stewart, Palisades Citizens Association, 364-1505
Marc Weiss, Southwest Neighborhood Assembly, 535-1970
Al Wheeler, Oldest Inhabitants of DC, 337-00340
Barbara Zartman, Cloisters in Georgetown, 337-6505

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President’s Column

Over the summer, there was ample opportunity to argue a particular case for the residents of the District. It goes like this:

This newsletter refers to economic development strategic planning currently under way through the offices of the Control Board. It also contains information about how you and your association can be part of that planning. I encourage you ù or others in your organization — to seize the opportunity to be part of that planning. Bring your thoughts and your constructive suggestions and become part of this process, which will produce a final strategic plan by November.

Having won the opportunity to be part of the dialogue, let’s make the most of it.

Barbara Zartman

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Lucille Molinelli has been through a spate of bad luck, and she is in rehabilitation at the Washington Home. Social as ever, Lucille would welcome calls and visits while she recuperates. The widow of wonderful Federation stalwart Jimmy Molinelli, Lucille will represent Foggy Bottom Association when she is back on her feet. You can reach Lucille at 895 0531 (Ext. 316).

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ANCs: Funding them, filling them

The House of Representatives voted to remove funding for Advisory Neighborhood Commissions from the 1998-99 D. C. Appropriation bill.

The floor rhetoric focused on misuse of funds by a few ANCs, and it reflected a great lack of knowledge of the critical communication link that most ANCs provide. Ironically, a colloquy on the floor involving Tom Davis of Virginia suggested that the ANCs’ function could be provided by the Federation of citizens Associations!

Some productive dialogue with the committee may have given them a fuller understanding of both the limitations on how much a voluntary Federation might provide, and how the ANCs might be improved, rather than done away with. There are 37 ANCs in the District, with 299 single-member districts. Overall there are 275 candidates for the 299 seats, but they are not evenly distributed. Some single-member districts have as many as four candidates, others have none (they are shown in the box below). An ANC may have as few as 2 members or as many as 14.

Members are encouraged to communicate with Chairman Davis (225- 6751) and with his Senate counterpart (224-3682), as well as the Chairmen of the Appropriations subcommittees (Senate: 224-1526 and House 225-6401).

Even the harshest critics of ANCs must provide some replacement mechanism for helping communities, businesses, and individual property owners of proposals that would change the character of their neighborhood, their street, the very properties next door. There is real potential for establishing a “mend it, don't end it” approach to the problems that beset some ANCs.

The Federation is anxious to identify opportunities to participate in recruitment, training and support that will produce stronger Advisory Neighborhood Commissions. Any member group is urged to share thoughts with a Board member.

Many individual ANCs do not have any candidate at all. The list of those single member districts follow. Write-in campaigns can elect a qualified commissioner — with as little as a single vote (no campaign, no expense!). Won’t you review the list and see whether someone you know would make a real contribution as a member of your ANC.

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Single-member Districts with NO Candidates
Ward 1 - A02,A07,B05,BlO,C02,C04,CO9,E02,E03,E04
Ward 2 - C06, C08, D03, D06
Ward 3 - C03, C04, C05. C06, C07,COl,D07,E05,F03,F06,F07
Ward 4-A06,BOl,B03,C07,D02,D07,D08,D10
Ward 5-A04,B02,B04,B05,BO9,B12,C07,D08,D10
Ward 6 - AOl,A04,A06,A13,A14,B05,BO9,BlO,Bll,COI
Ward 7-A06,A07,C02,C05,D02,D05,D06,E02,E03,E05
Ward 8-AOl,A02,A06,A07,B (all seats), C02,C03,D02,D03,D06,D07,EOI,E04,E05,E07

Voting Rights Lawsuit Continues

Very recently the D. C. Court of Appeals refused to grant a petition for further inquiry into what constitutes proof of residency — or what constitutes sufficient evidence to call residence into question for persons seeking to vote in the District.

In a split decision, the court found that telephone directories and drivers’ license records had no probative value in calling someone’s residence into question.

While the case originated with student voting in ANC elections in Georgetown, the issues affect every citizen’s right to question whether his or her vote can be negated by the vote cast by someone who abuses the “honor system” governing voter registration in the District.

The Court of Appeals is being petitioned for en banc review because the ruling will affect all elections in the District, according to Georgetown Residents Alliance delegate Don Crockett, who is representing the two candidates defeated by newly registered voters, precisely.

It is also subject to review by the Federal District Court for the District of Columbia because of the alleged violations of civil rights.

The dissent, written by Senior Judge George Gallagher, faulted the Special Master who conducted “evidentiary hearings” for failing to adequately probe the understandings of the challenged voters, especially in light of false encouragement given to voters by campaign organizers.

The dissent quoted the amicus American Civil Liberties Union in its argument that potential voters were being told emphatically that “they should register here in D.C. and that it made no difference ... where they paid their taxes, where their car should be registered, where their driver's license should be ...”

Judge Gallagher, noting that “a voter’s right to cast an undiluted vote is fundamental to American democracy,” questioned whether the Special Master and the court majority had adequately considered what must be done to protect that right and balance it against the separate right of a voter to cast an unintimidated ballot.

Continued Judge Gallagher, “The negation of a qualified citizen’s vote is a grievous loss, and when multiplied, as here, is a serious community issue.”

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New Asset in Downtown Development: The Horseshoe Alliance is formed

Many associations experience the frustration of having too little information about how to understand a development proposal, how to protect community rights, how to work with developers to make projects better.

The special concerns of associations that ring the downtown development area have led to the creation of the Horseshoe Alliance Resource Center. The “horseshoe” reflects the arc of associations that include Foggy Bottom, the Pennsylvania Quarter, Dupont and Logan Circles, Chinatown, and the people in between.

HARC does not intend to be an advocacy organization; rather, it will establish a resource available to any D.C. resident, regardless of their position on a zoning issue. Its goal it to promote more balanced presentations to the Board of zoning Adjustment, the Zoning Commission, and the National Capital Planning Commission.

The Alliance has regular meetings to consider how best to organize, and how best to provide assistance to all who are making presentations before the land use agencies. Their current agenda includes:

  1. Identifying proposed location(s) for library of materials, as well as content and maintenance
  2. Identifying speakers for lecture series, as well as locations
  3. Identifying affordable or pro bono legal counsel and other experts (planners, traffic experts, etc.)

Attorney Jim McCleod is project coordinator, with modest seed money from the Foggy Bottom Association. Jim can be reached at 223-0457.

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Community-based Residential Facilities: Still a serious concern

The District’s Zoning Commission once again has the topic of CBRFs before it for rulemaking.

The Federal Departments of Justice and HUD have pressed the city to agree to enact new rules governing siting of group homes, and the current proposal would allow unlimited numbers of CBRFs as a matter of right in residential neighborhoods.

One activist group has suggested removing the term “family” from the zoning code, replacing it with “household,” which could include up to 15 prior serious criminal behavior. unrelated persons.

Delegates from Capitol Hill, Hillandale, 16th Street Heights, Georgetown Residents Alliance, among others, are offering proposals to limit the number of such homes - and to provide for some notice to communities when the group homes will house individuals whose “disabilities” are linked with

The next hearings are on the evenings of September 24 and October 15; associations that wish to take an active part should contact delegate Dick Wolfe of the Capitol Hill Restoration Society at 543-4353.

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Federation meeting dates for the program year

Federation assembly meetings will be held on the following dates; all will begin at 7 p.m. and will be held at the Sumner School unless special notice is given.

October 27
November 24
December, Holiday Luncheon TBA
January 26
February 23
March 23
April - Annual Banquet TBA
May 26
June 22.

This is a switch from the traditional “second Thursday” pattern of past years. The Board elected to change the schedule in order to accommodate member groups that had structural conflicts with those Thursday meetings. We look forward to having them with us at our monthly sessions.

The Executive Board now meets on the second Thursday of each month.

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Dues are due! Bills have been mailed to associations for the $60 annual dues. Checks should be payable to the Federation and mailed to Treasurer Gracie Baten at 7624 13th Street, NW, 20012.

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