Sunday, September 4, 2011

ANC 6C W6TF Recommendations

From ANC 6C Chair, Commissioner Karen Wirt:

ANC 6C held a special meeting last night (August 29, 2011) to discuss redistricting.  We had a quorum of 5 out of 9 commissioners.  We held 4 votes.  All votes were unanimous, 5:0:0, with motions as follows --

1. No support for the Ronneberg plan to divide ANC 6C in half and give the northern SMDs to to 6A and the southern SMDs to 6B. 

Reasons:  We do not see the need for the H Street corridor to be under one ANC.  6C has worked successfully with 6A through the years regarding H Street and we see no reason for that to change; for example,  we worked well together to establish the H Street overlay and the moratorium against single-bottle sales of alcoholic beverages.  We support the H Street festival and positive development on the corridor.  We see a greater need for 6C to remain where it is to address the many developers coming south from NoMa and down North Capitol as well as near Union Station.  We owe it to our constituents to maintain the institutional memory of this development progress and continue to look out for their quality of life during the development. 

2. No cutout at K Street into 6C05 for Ward 2.  Keep 6C05 intact in 6C.

Reasons:  It is best to keep ANC 6C05 in tact for neighborhood cohesiveness.  The commissioner in that SMD has worked closely with constituents and fought long and hard to maintain neighborhood improvement and solidarity.  This representation has been enormously effective in ensuring that the quality of life of these residents is not negatively impacted.  We want that work to continue.  If the reason for the cutout at K Street is to give Ward 2 Mt. Vernon Triangle area residents a voice in the Union Station development, ANC 6C welcomes their input, but not at the cost of dividing up the 6C05 community.

3.  6C01, 02, and 03 would join the 4 Shaw SMDs to become ANC 6E, giving them 7 commissioners. Several caveats went with this vote: 

(a) We recommend that Tommy Wells be closely involved in monitoring the development and functioning of this new ANC.

(b) ANC 6C hopes to provide support and leadership through the commissioners it is providing to 6E.  Our vote on this matter included the stipulation that ANC 6C and 6E would have joint meetings and work together when development begins to move south from NoMa and down North Capitol because the development in that region is coming and will affect all our constituents in 6C and 6E.

(c) 6C will absorb the land south of Mass Ave in NW (to be part of my SMD 6C08).  I have worked with the residents there through the years and have served on the board of the CCNV, so have good knowledge of their concerns.

(d) ANC 6C supports expanding its eastern border to the area between Florida and H from 7th to 8th Street.

6C recognizes the importance of helping our SMD neighbors to the north during a transitional period.  Rather than try to absorb these 4 Shaw SMDs into 6C, we understand their need for autonomy and respect it.  To add them to 6C in our view would make an ANC that is too large to manage effectively (13 SMDs), which would result in too little time at monthly meetings to devote to the myriad matters that come before us, especially during a heavy development period predicted to come in the next decade.  Our commissioners in 6C01, 6C02, and 6C03 can strengthen the 6E team and can provide  guidance, experience, and support.  6E would thus have 7 commissioners.

4.  6C also needs 7 commissioners to function efficiently. 

Reasons: It will be difficult to ensure a quorum with an even number (in the current plan, 6) because of several commissioners who travel frequently, absences because of illness, etc.  By gaining an SMD we would have 7 commissioners, a number that we believe is a minimum to conduct the business of the people.  We propose gaining a commissioner by expanding the southern border to Independence Avenue.  This area is a continuation of the historic district, which our commissioners and a number of our constituents work hard to preserve, and we would continue to be the watchdogs for the historic district we now represent as well as these few blocks south of East Capitol.

Thank you for consideration of these recommendations.  Please forward to relevant parties and post it on the redistricting blog.   We will be working on individual SMD boundaries in the next few weeks and will forward that information when it is complete.

Karen Wirt
ANC 6C chair
on behalf of ANC 6C

(Fengler note:  Once W6TF receives the specific SMD boundaries, those will be posted.  ANC 6C is scheduled to meet on September 15.)


  1. I think 6C's justification for needing a 7th Commissioner because of frequent travel by several Commissioners is particularly weak. So 6B should lose an SMD to accommodate travel schedules of 6C commissioners? Why don't these 6C Commissioners arrange their travel schedule around 6C meetings or step down to let others with more time represent their constituents?

  2. I am confused by Chair Wirt's point #2. The point of the K Street cutout was to give ANC 6E a say in the Union Station air-rights development. Why is she talking about Ward 2, which is at least 4 blocks from Air Rights development?

  3. As someone who lives in 6C, I wouldn't wish this dysfunctional Commission on any fellow Ward 6 resident. 6C's collective experience with developer's coming down NOMA and North Capitol has led to a mentality of a "do whatever you want, we support it". The Union Station North rezoning was a perfect example of how 6C is willing to give away the store, and ask nothing in return. Chair Wirt was the only one who voted against the USN debacle.

  4. @11:32
    I think the bigger issue is that with 6 commissioners, it is likely that there will be many 3-3 decisions, which will potentially create gridlock. That is what 2C has often dealt with when they have had 2-2 ties, and is why 6C must add a seventh SMD.

    Chair Wirt is referring to the current 2C, which will be in Ward 6. There currently is no 6E, and it is just a proposed (though likely) scenario.

    ANC 6C worked for nearly two years with the Office of Planning on the USN zoning, including over a dozen public meetings. As a result of this process, a residential requirement was added, H Street will have a continuous retail front, step-downs were required towards Union Station and Parker/2nd rowhouses, etc. The new zone is far better for the community than the previous by-right zoning, and includes design review not included in other adjacent zones.

  5. "at the cost of dividing the 6C05 community." Does 6C realize that no one lives in the proposed K Street cutout? Not to wax philosophic, but can you really divide a community that has no residents?