Category Archives: Meetings

BLOG: Report on quarterly ANC Chairs meeting with Mayor Gray: FY 2015 budget

Cross-posted at www.willstephensanc.com

On Monday, April 7th, Mayor Gray hosted his quarterly meeting with ANC Chairs and agency heads.  This is an initiative that the Mayor started about 3 years ago.  The meeting usually begins with introductions, and then a presentation or two from various city agency representatives, followed by questions and open discussion.  These sessions can be very useful because the Mayor includes all of the agency heads at the meetings.  This way, there is always someone to answer any question that arises, and the Mayor can direct an agency head to follow up on concerns or issues raised during the discussion.  I hope whoever is the next mayor will continue this new tradition.

Monday night’s meeting focused almost exclusively on the budget.  The session began with a presentation on the Mayor’s proposed FY 2015 budget by Eric Goulet, Director of the Mayor’s Office on Budget and Finance.  Full budget information is available here.

Some overall highlights of the budget overview included the following:

  • Increases the District’s fund balance to $1.75 billion (the highest ever) to improve the city’s bond rating;
  • No new taxes or fees;
  • Represents a 4.5% total increase over the approved FY 2014 budget;
  • Human services and education make up over 60% of the total budget; and
  • 71% of the budget is generated from local taxes and fees (with the rest coming from federal grants, payments, and Medicaid).

With respect to the ANC and our part of the city in particular, some highlights of the budget presentation included the following:

  • $38 million for renovation of Garrison Elementary School;
  • Property tax relief for seniors (based on the recent legislation sponsored by Councilwoman Anita Bonds);
  • Creation of a “One City Business Portal” for unified licensing and permitting;
  • Fully funds a force of 4,000 police officers; and
  • $114 million for sidewalk repairs, bicycle, and pedestrian improvements (including eliminating the current $18 million backlog of outstanding sidewalk repairs).

This is the third year that the Mayor has discussed the budget with ANC Chairs, followed by town hall meetings around the city.  I thanked the Mayor for respecting the intelligence of ANC Commissioners and residents by hosting these sessions.  The budget is probably the most important piece of legislation that the Council passes each year, but at the same also the hardest for individual residents and stakeholders to understand, because it is so large and dense.  The budget puts hard dollars toward priority items and thus reflects our values as a city — how we want to improve the quality of life and help people.  I appreciate that the Mayor is willing to explain clearly the priorities reflected in the budget proposal, package it in a way that is understandable, answer difficult questions about it, and solicit feedback on it.

With regard to specific budget items that we discussed at the quarterly meeting, I thanked the Mayor on behalf of our ANC for the Garrison School funding, as well as for funding the backlog of sidewalk repairs, given the heavy pedestrian traffic in our area.  I suggest that ANC Commissioners host walk-throughs of their Single Member Districts to make sure any necessary sidewalk repairs are noted and logged in the District Department of Transportation’s list in order to get repaired between now and the end of FY 2015.  I’ll be doing a sidewalk repair walk-through in 2B08 with DDOT representatives in May.

The Mayor, Mr. Goulet, and others will be holding town hall meetings in each ward to discuss the budget proposal.  The Ward 2 Budget town hall meeting will take place at the Sumner School (17th and M) at 6:30pm on Thursday, April 24th.  Community members are encouraged to attend.

BLOG: Proposed Revisions to ANC2B’s Bylaws

As discussed at ANC2B’s March 2014 meeting, I intend to propose the below revisions to ANC2B’s Bylaws at our April 2014 regular meeting – April 9. All deletions are indicated by strikethrough and all proposed additions are bold and italicized.

Please email your thoughts on the proposed revisions to us or leave them in the comments section.

-Kevin O’Connor

Commissioner, ANC2Bo2

Bylaws of Advisory Neighborhood Commission 2B

ARTICLE I — NAME:

Advisory Neighborhood Commission 2B shall be known as the Dupont Circle Advisory Neighborhood Commission, Advisory Neighborhood Commission 2B, or ANC 2B. The Commission is established pursuant to the D.C. Self-Government and Governmental Reorganization Act its successors, and the Comprehensive Advisory Neighborhood Commissions Reform Amendment Act.

ARTICLE II — PURPOSE:

Section 1 — The Commission may advise the Council, Mayor, and Executive Branch agencies, and independent agencies, boards, and commissions of the government of the District of Columbia with respect to all matters of District governmental policy or service delivery. Such matters include, but are not limited to, decisions regarding urban planning, transportation, public works, streetscape improvement, neighborhood services, business revitalization, parks and recreation, social services, education, health, public safety, taxation, and cleanliness and sanitation which affect the Commission area. More specifically, the Commission shall consider administrative applications and proposed policy changes regarding, but not limited to, zoning, public space, parking and transportation, historic preservation, property use and occupancy, alcoholic beverage control, public safety, and comprehensive planning. The views of the Commission shall be granted “great weight,” as defined by D.C. law, when adopted by a majority of the Commission in a public meeting.

Section 2 — The Commission may present its views to public and private entities including, but not limited to, District, regional, or federal government agencies.

Section 3 — The Commission may initiate its own proposals for neighborhood, District, regional, or federal government action.

Section 4 — The Commission shall receive, investigate, and consider constituent concerns and complaints. When appropriate, the Commission shall attempt to resolve the concern or complaint. The Commission may transmit such issues to the appropriate public or private entity for resolution.

Section 5 — Each year, the Commission shall file an annual report with the Council and the Mayor for the preceding fiscal year. Such report shall provide a summary of the Commission’s activities for the prior fiscal year and provide pertinent recommendations for the improvement of services, policy, or programs.

Section 6 — The Commission shall when appropriate, constitute the citizen advisory mechanism required by law or regulation.

Section 7 — The Commission shall carry out any other function as shall be provided by law or regulation.

ARTICLE III — MEMBERS:

Section 1 — The Commission shall be comprised of the Commissioners duly elected and certified by the Board of Elections and Ethics to Single Member Districts within the Commission’s boundaries. The boundaries of the Commission and Single Member Districts shall be developed after the decennial census in a process determined by the Council.

Section 2 — Commissioners shall normally serve for a term of two years beginning noon on the second day of January following the election. In the case of a vacancy, such vacancy will be filled for the balance of the term of office in accordance with law and the regulations of the Board of Elections and Ethics.

Section 3 — Each Commissioner shall have one vote in Commission matters. If a Commissioner may not be in attendance for a particular vote related to a specific matter, the Commissioner may assign her/his vote in the matter to another Commissioner. In such cases, the Commissioner shall assign the proxy by signed letter to the Secretary indicating the specific matter and required vote.

Section 4 — Commissioners shall take due diligence to avoid actual or perceived conflicts of interest on matters before the Commission. A Commissioner shall notify the Commission of any instance where she/he has a financial or personal interest in an action before the Commission. A Commissioner shall not participate in the deliberations of or vote on any motions related to a matter where she/he has a direct financial interest. If a Commissioner is involved in civic, business, political, or neighborhood organizations with business before the Commission, she/he shall notify the Commission of this and of her/his role in the matter. When appropriate, a Commissioner may be excused from participating in a matter to avoid an actual or perceived conflict of interest.

ARTICLE IV — OFFICERS AND COMMITTEES:

Section 1 — In January of each year, the Commission shall elect from among its members a Chairperson, Vice Chairperson, Secretary, Treasurer, and such other officers as may be determined by the Commission. Additional elections may be held at any regular meeting upon approval of a motion supported by a majority of Commissioners.

Section 2 — A quorum for the election of officers shall be a majority of the Commissioners.

Section 3 – In the event of a tie vote, the election of a Commission officer will be decided by a coin-flip.

Section 4  3 — The Chairperson shall serve as convener of the Commission and shall chair the meetings. During meetings, the Chairperson shall rule on motions and procedural issues; such rulings may be reconsidered consistent with the parliamentary authority. The Chairperson shall supervise employees and manage the business operations of the Commission.

Section 5  4 — The Vice Chairperson shall fulfill the obligations of the Chairperson in her/his absence. The Vice Chairperson shall provide such assistance to the Chairperson as is requested and shall perform such duties as may be delegated by the Chairperson.

Section 6 5 — The Secretary shall be responsible for the preparation of minutes of public meetings and for maintaining the official records of the Commission. Employees may be assigned by the Commission to assist with these tasks.

Section 7 6 — The Treasurer shall be responsible for the fiscal management of the Commission and for maintaining the financial records of the Commission. Financial management shall be conducted in accordance with applicable laws, regulations, and Commission’s guidelines.

Section 8 7 — In the case of a vacancy in any office, the Commission shall elect a new officer at its next public meeting.

Section 9 8 — The Commission may create standing and ad hoc committees, the members of which may include Commissioners, residents, and other members. The Chairperson of each committee shall be a duly elected Commissioner.

Section 10  — At the December meeting of the Commission, the Commission shall select a temporary “Election Chairperson” to manage the election of officers at the January meeting, as described in Section 1 of this Article.  The “Election Chairperson” shall be selected from among the Commissioners or Commissioners-elect who will be in office at the January meeting.

ARTICLE V — MEETINGS:

Section 1 — Residents from within the Commission’s boundaries and invited guests may present testimony during the Commission’s deliberations on matters. The view of residents shall be considered during the Commission’s deliberations.

Section 2 — No official actions may be taken by the Commission unless a quorum is present. A quorum is a simple majority of the Commissioners.

Section 3 — Official actions, except for the amendment of these Bylaws, shall be approved by a simple majority of those Commissioners present and voting. In the case of a tie vote, in accordance with  Robert’s Rules of Order. the Chairperson’s vote shall be the deciding vote.

Section 4 — The Commission shall meet no less than nine times annually and shall normally meet the second Wednesday of each month at 7:00 p.m. at a place to be determined and publicly posted.

Section 5 — The Commission may periodically host “town hall” or community meetings to address particular issues or concerns.

Section 6 — Special public meetings of the Commission may be called by the Chairperson to address issues that must be considered between regularly scheduled public meetings. Special public meetings may also be called at the written request of two Commissioners. The purpose of the special public meeting shall be stated in the request. Commissioners shall receive at least two days notice for duly called special public meetings. Reasonable public notice shall also be provided for special public meetings.

ARTICLE VI — FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT:

Section 1 — The Commission shall develop and adhere to financial management guidelines consistent with applicable laws and regulations.

Section 2 — The Commission shall consider and adopt a budget outlining revenues and expenditures planned for each fiscal year. The budget may include unbudgeted reserves. The budget shall be approved in final by a simple majority vote at a public meeting within a month from the date that the Commission is informed of its annual appropriation. The Commission may amend the budget by simple majority vote at any time during the fiscal year.

Section 3 — The Treasurer shall prepare financial reports outlining expenses and revenues for approval by the Commission in a public meeting on a quarterly basis. The report shall be prepared in accordance with the requirements of the Auditor of the District of Columbia.

Section 4 — The signature of two officers shall be required on all drafts, money orders, and expenditures of the Commission. An officer may not sign a draft, money order, or expenditure intended for the reimbursement of expenses which she/he incurred.

Section 5 — The Treasurer shall serve as the Commission’s contact with the Auditor of the District of Columbia or other District officials on financial matters. Should the Treasurer be the subject of an audit or other investigation, the Chairperson will assign another Commissioner to assume these duties until such audit or investigation is closed.

ARTICLE VII — PARLIAMENTARY AUTHORITY:

The most recently revised edition of Roberts’ Rules of Order shall govern the deliberations of the Commission except when the rules are inconsistent with these Bylaws and any special rules of order the Commission may adopt.

ARTICLE VIII — OTHER PROVISIONS:

Section 1 — All staff members employees of the Commission shall be hired by the Commission and shall serve at the pleasure of the Commission. The Commission shall establish position descriptions for its employees. The staff members employees of the Commission may be hired on a full-time or part-time basis and for an indefinite or for a definite term. Persons hired by the Commission shall meet the qualifications established by the position description.

Section 2 — Copies of these Bylaws shall be made available to the public.

Section 3 – The Commission shall conduct its business in accordance with the most recently approved version of the Dupont Circle Advisory Neighborhood Commission Policy and Procedures Manual.

ARTICLE IX — AMENDMENT OF THE BYLAWS:

At least two weeks notice, to each Commissioner and the public, shall be given prior to consideration of any modifications, deletions, or additions to these Bylaws. A two-thirds majority of the Commissioners is required for such amendments to be passed.

Adopted as revised — May 13, 2009

 

NEWS: ANC 2B needs your feedback to improve our meetings!

In an effort to improve our monthly meetings, we’re seeking your feedback! Please take a brief moment to answer our very short survey. Any input is greatly appreciated!

Choose between two surveys depending on which is most applicable to you:

Survey for general attendees to the monthly meeting: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/MQTHGXB

Survey for presenters at the monthly meeting: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/M6HBGCR

BLOG: Report on first meeting with Pedestrian Advisory Council

[Cross-posted at www.willstephensanc.com]

I had my first Pedestrian Advisory Council (PAC) meeting as the Ward 2 representative on Monday, March 24th in Capitol Hill.  The meeting was chaired by Jason Broehm, a former 2B08 resident (from the Meredith).

I learned some interesting details about how the District handles pedestrian safety and enforcement (and traffic safety  and enforcement generally):

  • Traffic Captains:  While the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) doesn’t have traffic safety division, each police district does have a designated “Traffic Captain.”  The traffic captain from the 7th District attended the PAC meeting.
  • Major Crash Division:  The MPD also has a special division covering “major crashes,” which is defined as crashed which result in a fatality (or may result  in a fatality).  Sergeant Terry Thorne of the major crash division reported at the PAC meeting indetail on the 4 fatal pedestrian-related crashes so far this year – one on the Sousa bridge, one at 13th & I Streets NW, one on I-695, and a construction worker that was killed by falling construction equipment and material when a driver crashed into the construction site.
  • Special Prosecutors:  The District has two special prosecutors for traffic enforcement, paid from grant funding from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

The PAC is split up into two committees, a “Walking Environment Committee” and an “Enforcement and Education Committee.”   The report from the Walking Environment Committee had some interesting items:

  • Sidewalk Repair Backlog:  The District Department of Transportation (DDOT) has an $18 million backlog of sidewalk repairs, which the Mayor covers in his FY 2015 budget.
  • Traffic Signal Optimization:  DDOT is going to be posting a new PowerPoint presentation on traffic signal optimization, including data collected at hundreds of intersections (# of pedestrians, # of right turns, etc.).  The report will not deal with Leading Pedestrian Intervals (LPIs), where pedestrians are given a few seconds to begin walking before turning cars are given a green light.
  • ANC / DDOT / PAC Collaboration.  The Committee Chair, Marlene Berlin, would like to focus on collaboration with ANCs.  There is an ANC in Ward 6 that has a particularly good relationship with DDOT, and representatives from that ANC and DDOT representatives are going to talk about this at the next meeting.

Regarding the PAC itself, there were a few items of note from the March meeting:

  • The full PAC meets every other month, with Committees meeting in the off months.
  • The last PAC vacancy (Council Chair Phil Mendelson’s appointee) should be filled shortly.
  • The PAC has access to some limited funding through DDOT.
  • The PAC just hired a part-time program/administrative associate.

I’ll be joining the “Walking Environment Committee,” which is going to be discussing ANC collaboration and outreach at its April meeting.  If you have any comments or questions related to pedestrian issues, please let me know (willstephensanc2b08@gmail.com).