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Arlington County Civic Federation

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December, 2002 - Volume 87, No. 4 ------

School Board to Visit Federation

Meeting December 3, 2002, Virginia Hospital Center-Arlington Hazel Auditorium
Community Forum 7PM, Regular Meeting 7:30 PM

The School Board will be guests of the Civic Federation at our December meeting. Following a presentation from the School Board, there will be an opportunity for questions and answers from Federation delegates and alternates. Be there early to get a good seat!

Civic News and Events

Civic Federation Sets Legislative Priorities

At our November meeting, the Federation adopted a Legislative Package in record time. Thanks go to Legislative Committee Chair Nancy Graham and her entire committee for their hard work. Federation delegates and alternates voted to select their legislative priorities from the items in the Legislative Package. The results were as follows:

Top Issue with 14 Votes: Item 18d. Labeled as cigarette tax but actually described in legislative package as giving counties equal authority with cities. Since cities can levy a higher tax on cigarettes, this would in effect, allow Arlington County to raise the cigarette tax.

Second Most Popular Issue with 11 Votes: Item 19b. Labeled I-66. Opposes changes to I-66 inside the Beltway unless part of a comprehensive plan.

Third Most Popular Issue with 10 Votes (two tied): Item 6f. Immigration issues. Encourages legislation to provide incentives for local Virginia police departments to participate in INS' program that allows local police to arrest and detain individuals for immigration violations. Item 8. Gun Control. Supports mandatory, instant background checks for purchases at gun shows.

Next Most Popular Issues, All with 7 Votes (five tied): Item 7a. 21-Day Rule; Item 12. Education, Standards of Learning; Item 5b. Air Quality - Clean Smokestacks Act. Item 18f. Raise state's tobacco products tax; and Item 20b. Reestablish EPA's Office of Noise Abatement under Quiet Communities Act.

In Memoriam

James A. Davis, husband of Jennie T. Davis, passed away in November. Jim contributed greatly to the civic life of Arlington for over forty years, including serving as a member of the Board of Management of the Veterans Memorial YMCA; member of the Nauck Civic Association; Chief Editor of the Nauck Newsletter; founding member of the Arlington Housing Corporation; member of the Roosevelt Society; member of the Committee of 100 and an active member of the Our Lady Queen of Peace Catholic Church parish

Get Well Soon

Long-time Civic Federation delegate and past-President, Sherman Pratt, recently suffered a stroke. As he recovers, our thoughts are with him and his family.

Community Forum

This month's community forum will feature WALKArlington. You may be asking, what is WALKArlington? Here is an explanation from the group:

The original idea, born out of the mid-course review of the Rosslyn-Ballston corridor 13 years ago, was for a "greenway" along 9th Street in Ballston/Virginia Square. The idea has grown to mean much more: it promises safe, pleasurable and unique walking experiences not only along 9th Street, and not only in the R-B corridor, but County-wide. It is a multi-faceted concept of public art-infused urban design, special event planning and programming to encourage and celebrate walking in Arlington.

Already in place are a WALKArlington Coordinator (Jan Goldstein) in the Department of Public Works and a WALKArlington Urban Designer (Charles Zucker - consultant) charged with developing a pilot project during the coming year. Also under discussion: a WALKArlington Day celebration; a lunchtime walking club and self-guided walking tours of County destinations.

A revised web site is also in the offing; for background reading on the project, however, visit www.commuterpage.com/greenway1.htm.

Committee News

The Airport Issues Committee was recently created by the ACCF to promote a common-sense balance between airport operations and their impacts on surrounding communities. The first meeting of the Committee was held on Wednesday, November 20 at the Lyon Park Community Center. Representatives from eleven Civic Associations were present, as well as interim chairman Jim Pebley. Steve Geiger (Lyon Park) and Steve Baur (Woodmont) were elected as co-chairs of the committee. The AIC was formed from a pre-existing group of fifteen Civic Associations called the Neighbors of Reagan National Airport, and will address many aspects of the relationship between the airport and surrounding communities, including noise, air pollution, and water pollution, through interactions with the Arlington County Board, the Committee on Noise and Aviation at National and Dulles Airports (CONAANDA), and other elected officials and airport-related organizations. Contact Steve Geiger at sgeiger@retec.com for more information.

At the Civic Federation Meeting of November 12, the chair of the Environmental Affairs Committee presented the Committee's resolution regarding the County's proposed "Tree Preservation Ordinance." The Tree Preservation Ordinance was designed to protect trees on County property and establishes a mechanism for designating "Heritage, Memorial, Specimen Trees, and Street Trees" on both public and private property. By voice vote, the Civic Federation Delegates approved the Committee's proposed resolution, titled "A Tree Ordinance that Balances Environmental Needs and Private Rights." The text of the adopted resolution is available on the Civic Federation's web site at www.civfed.org. On November 16, the Chair of the Environmental Affairs Committee presented the Civic Federation's resolution to the Arlington County Board. Twenty-six speakers expressed views both in support and in opposition to the proposed ordinance at the Board meeting. Following the speakers comments, the Arlington County Board adopted a compromise tree preservation ordinance. The Arlington County Board's adopted ordinance allows for the designation of trees as Heritage, Memorial, Specimen or Street trees and protects such trees from removal or damage. Trees on both public and private property are eligible for designation, although trees on land used for single-family residential properties, under Article 3 of the ordinance, require consent by the property owner before being recommended to the County Board for formal designation for protection under the ordinance. It should be noted that Board Member Paul Ferguson initiated the compromise language that was unanimously approved by the Board.

On November 18, the Environmental Affairs Committee heard a presentation by Jeff Harn of the Arlington County Department of Environmental Services' (DES) Environmental Planning Office on the County's proposed revised Chesapeake Bay Preservation Ordinance. The County's existing ordinance was adopted in 1992 and was amended in May 2001 to include an "other lands" provision. The deadline to amend Arlington's Chesapeake Ordinance to comply with new State requirements is March 1, 2003. The Committee inquired as to the status of the proposed draft ordinance and its narrative language. This has not yet been made available to the public. The proposed ordinance is expected to go before the Planning Commission at its January 2003 meeting and before the County Board at its February 2003 Board Meeting. The Environmental Affairs Committee has invited County Staff to make a presentation at our February 4, 2003, Civic Federation Meeting on the County's Watershed Management Plan and related activities, such as the proposed revised Chesapeake Bay Preservation Ordinance. The Committee plans to draft a resolution on the proposed revised ordinance and present the resolution to the delegates at the February 2003 Civic Federation meeting.

At the November 12 Civic Federation Meeting, the proposed anti-English-Ivy resolution introduced by Delegate Anne Fisher was jointly referred to the Environmental Affairs and Parks and Recreation Committees. Members of the Environmental Affairs Committee have reviewed and made suggested revisions to the proposed resolution, titled Classification of English Ivy as a Noxious Weed, and approved our proposed revised language at our November 18 meeting. For our proposed revised resolution, please visit the Civic Federation web site at "www.civfed.org." The proposed resolution will be presented for adoption at the Civic Federation meeting of December 3.

At the time of the drafting of the December Civic Federation Newsletter, the next meeting of the Environmental Affairs Committee had not been scheduled. Based on recent communications with County Staff, the anticipated tentative date for public release of the proposed Water Pollution Control Division Master Plan 2001 Update will be during the first part of January. Also, it is anticipated that the lab test results from the electron beam testing should be complete around the first week in December. In the next issue of Civic Federation Newsletter, the Committee plans to report on the goals and objectives of the test trials and the results of the testing. If you are interested in serving on the Environmental Affairs Committee, or have questions concerning the Committee, please contact Ernie Ragland at (703) 525-6297, or by e-mail at ragland.ernie@prodigy.net.

The Executive Committee and our Officers continue to be awed by the breadth and depth of the talent and knowledge found among our Civic Federation delegates - not to mention the hard work and boundless energy expended to make Arlington the best possible community! At our November meeting, in addition to reviewing the rules for the December meeting, based on recommendations from the Schools Committee (Roger Meyer and Terri Prell) and learning that we were financially in good shape (Frances Finta), we considered the following:

  • A report from Ernie Ragland, Chair of the Environmental Affairs Committee, on the Electron Beam Pilot test at the waste treatment plant, on discussions with Urban Forestry, and on future deliberations on the revisions to the Chesapeake Bay Ordinance;

  • A report on Public Services and approval for a letter from Jackie Snelling to be included with one from Fire Chief Edward Plaugher;

  • A report from committee member Steve Geiger on the newly-created Ad Hoc Committee on Airport Issues;

  • Referral of Jim Hurysz's resolution on mediation for civic disputes to the Executive Committee;

  • Joint referral of Anne Fisher's resolution to have English Ivy declared a noxious weed to Environmental Affairs and Parks and Recreation;

  • The need for another back-up timekeeper;

  • The need for someone to handle public relations for us during Mileva Hartman's absence;

  • The work of the Outreach Committee with two areas in the process of developing civic associations (Patrick Smaldore and Frances Finta);

  • The on-going efforts of the 911 Scholarship Committee (Jim Pebley)

  • The status of the Best Practices Task Force (Bob Atkins, Kim Smith) which should be holding its first meeting in early to mid-December.

Other issues of community concern, which might reach the Civic Federation, were also briefly considered, and another outstanding Civic Hero was selected.

The Executive Committee wishes all the delegates, their families and organizations a wonderful holiday season, and we look forward to working with you all in the New Year.

The Housing Committee met on Sunday, November 24th, and will be reporting at the December Civic Federation meeting regarding the resolution for the Federation to support the creation of a broad-based coalition that would develop a plan for homeownership for Arlington's public servants and appoint a representative to participate in the coalition. Contact Wayne Kubicki, wayne for detai+ls.

Public safety infrastructure needs and public preparedness continue to dominate the work of the Public Services Committee. On the former, the Committee presented the Environmental Health Inspector resolution approved at November's meeting to the County Board on November 16th. On the latter, the message remains the same: only you can ensure that you and your family are ready for an emergency by having supplies, a communications plan, and knowledge of what the government can and cannot do in a disaster situation. Only you as a leader can help shape the response of your neighborhood, for your neighborhood.

Presidents of civic associations received a letter from Fire Chief Edward Plaugher inviting neighborhood volunteers to get CERT training. Accompanying it was a letter from the Civic Federation Public Services Committee Public Preparedness Initiative asking that each civic association identify a contact person for emergency preparedness. There is great interest in CERT training (basics of disaster; medical operations - breathing, bleeding, shock and triage; fire suppression; light search and rescue; psychology of disaster; and terrorism), and the first regular class (a high-rise) is already scheduled for January.

We ask each of you to work within your association to identify an emergency preparedness liaison/coordinator and to discuss with your neighbors the advantages in getting CERT trained. Remember, CERTs are trained to help their families first and then their neighbors! For information on supply kits, plans or CERT training, contact prepared+.

We wish all of you a happy holiday season. Consider giving the gift of preparedness to your loved ones.

The Revenues and Expenditures Committee has begun preparations for the Federation's proposed County Budget. Chair Bob Atkins reports that the Federation website now has the approved County Board Guidelines for FY 2004. They will help guide the Committee's next budget deliberations. Please contact Bob Atkins at bob+ if you wish to participate in the next budget review; first meeting tentatively Sunday, February 8, 2003.

The Scholarship Committee has been hard at work. As some of you may have read recently in the Sun-Gazette, the United We Stand 10-kilometer race was held November 9th to benefit the Civic Federation's 9/11 Memorial Scholarship Fund. Not only did the race raise more than $2,000 for the fund, but the Federation's own Parks Committee co-chair, Jay Wind was the top male finisher from Arlington, in a blazing 37:51.

ACCF Officers

    President Dan Krasnegor 703-534-4024 dan+

    Vice President Patrick Smaldore 703-528-3935 patrick+

    Treasurer Frances Finta 703-528-2882 Fax 528-0182

    Secretary Tim Wise 703-243-8345 tim+

Executive Committee

    Chairman - Kim Smith 703-527-0294 - kim+

    Member - Robert Atkins 703-527-8859 - (voice or fax) - robert+

    Member - Nancy Graham 703-243-4650 - nancy+

    Member - Mike Lane - mike

    + Member - Randy Swart 703-521-2080 - randy+

ACCF Committee Chairs

This page was last revised on: December 27, 2003.
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