Sunday, August 2, 2009

Hillcrest Community Civic Association Meeting Recap

Photo of Chairman Gray and Ward 7 Councilmember Alexander by my Blackberry.

I attended my first ever Hillcrest Community Civic Association Meeting today. I know that I should be embarrassed that this is my first meeting given that I moved to the area in 2006. I've missed some meeting due to work or being out of town. I missed the others, because I'm just not a fan of meetings. Shame on me. Despite the fact that I have the attention span of a five year old, I made it through the entire meeting. However, there were parts I was ready to stab myself in the eye from boredom.

The first hour was a series of recaps and reports. I swear I heard the same three announcements about fifty times: National Night Out on August 4th, 20th Anniversary in September, and some thing about the Palisades. It appeared the repetition was due to speakers not being prepared and speakers not being in the room when speakers were talking. The main thing that was frustrating was all the background noise.

I stepped outside of the meeting to talk to Officer LaFrance. One of my neighbors and I are looking forward to working with him and the owners of Fairfax Village Shopping Center to prevent loitering and littering. Lt. Netter was there as well. He cracks me up.

Things started to heat up a little when the Skyland Developers gave a presentation on the status of the project. They anticipate a zoning hearing in October 2009, construction starting in 2011, and a grand opening in 2013. Some old time residents seemed frustrated with the developers given this process has been dragging on for years. One resident came up to me and one of my neighbors and said it was our fight now. He was tired of fighting.

I stayed for the Council Member Roundtable. It was great to meet Ward 7 Councilmember Yvette Alexander. I will be honest and say I was indifferent towards her prior to today (the opposite of love isn't hate... it's indifference). However, after meeting her in person I am shifting to a more favorable view. I LOVE her passion behind the DC Statehood Movement. I'm almost inspired to help out. Councilmember Alexander also talked about the vacant property proposal that will be heard on September 22nd. I put that in my calendar. I have the little issue of the vacant property at 3802 Suitland Terr SE.

Chairman Vince Gray was also in attendance. He is by far one of favorite people in DC. He's a nice mix of Old School Funk with New School Flavor. I get star struck every time I see him. The thing I respect the most about Chairman Gray is he genuinely tries to make the best decision for the City. He's not in it for the accolades. He's just a humble guy. I wish he would mentor Mayor Fenty... (sigh)

Chairman Gray gave an overview of the budget approved by Council. He also talked about the Council's independent review of the Mayor's takeover of the school system. They are at the very preliminary stages where they are trying to develop their review criteria. It's very encouraging to know that Chairman Gray and the Council are keeping tabs on Mayor Fenty.


  1. i was there too and had many of the same opinions. I think that the Skyland Team is doing a good job -- they are hindered right now because of the economy but are doing all they can to speed the project along. They have been very receptive over the past 2 years to all the suggestions and input from the community in terms of design and layout, and want for it to be a successful place.

    It was really frustrating to hear some of those old guys complaining so loudly about the team and using crude language...

  2. Hey... I wish I had known you were going to be there. By process of elimination I know exactly who you were.

    I deal with the old complaining people all the time in the jurisdiction that I work in.