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For ANC in Ward 5

Some wards divide up their ANCs by neighborhood. Ward 5, already a geographically large ward, is carved into only three ANCs, each containing a whopping 12 single-member districts and even splitting Brookland up between ANCs.

That means people vote on issues often very far from their own neighborhoods, such as ANC 5C where commissioners from as far away as Fort Totten Park voted to oppose Big Bear's license way down in Bloomingdale, against the wishes of Bloomingdale's own representatives. That's about the distance from the White House to Columbia Heights.

We support Jioni Palmer, who is running to unseat incumbent Marshall Phillips in Edgewood's 5C08. Palmer wants to do more to improve retail in Edgewood, which has lost some high-profile businesses such as the Safeway on Rhode Island Avenue. Phillips appears to have missed qualifying for the ballot, but is trying to hold his seat as a write-in. With the small turnout of many ANC SMD races, a write-in candidacy can succeed, so we urge residents to vote for Palmer.

Another worthy challenger is James Fournier, who is challenging incumbent Barrie Daneker in Stronghold and northern Bloomingdale's 5C07. Daneker has taken a combative and condescending tone on the ANC, which has created more strife over the McMillan development than need be. Daneker also opposed the Big Bear license, as did all but two of the commissioners.

In 5C06, spanning Rhode Island Avenue with parts of Eckington and Edgewood, Darin Allen would do more to communicate with constituents on the street and through his Twitter account than longtime incumbent Mary Farmer-Allen.

Bloomingdale's John Salatti (5C04, Rhode Island to Adams Street) has been a model commissioner and has led the way in encouraging more commercial development that responds to residents' needs, and is running unopposed. In 5C03, south of Rhode Island, green business entrepreneur Hugh Youngblood is running unopposed as well, also with the support of the friends of Big Bear and of a more vibrant Bloomingdale.

Intense debates over development at CUA and the Brookland Metro drove tempers high in Brookland last year. Carolyn Steptoe, the ANC Commissioner for 5A07 from Irving to Michigan east of the railroad tracks, vociferously opposed projects to make better use of the parking lots at the Metro. John Daggett, her opponent, more reasonably pointed out that some development won't "destroy" the neighborhood or the local parks that residents treasure. Steptoe is also extremely combative toward residents on neighborhood email lists. We endorse Mr. Daggett.

Just to the east, in 5A10 east of 15th and 16th Streets, there is a three-way open seat race between Jehan Carter, Corey Griffin and Allen Tillman. We don't have much information on Carter and Tillman, but residents who've spoken with Griffin came away impressed by his ability to have a strong opinion about the direction of the city, while simultaneously displaying a great deal of respect for dissenting opinion. He would bring a younger perspective to an ANC that has been dominated by an older demographic and created speed bumps for local businesses trying to enhance the 12th Street corridor.

In Trinidad, along Ward 5's southern border, incumbents Thalia Wiggins (5B06, West Virginia Avenue and the Florida Market) and Tina Laskaris (5B08, southeast Trinidad) have very ably represented their neighborhood and enjoy widespread respect. Both should be reelected.

India Henderson, the incumbent in 5B10 which contains the Carver half of Carver-Langston, is not a communicative commissioner and is rarely seen in the district. Camille Tucker seems very likely to do better. India Henderson is also the daughter of Council primary candidate and Kathy Henderson, who often acts as the de facto ANC commissioner and was recently embroiled in a bizarre sign-removing scandal.

A common complaint about many ANC commissioners surrounds their level of outreach to the community, through regular district meetings, email lists, and other mechanisms. Many commissioners stop reaching out to those they don't know after being in office for a period of time, and many don't use new means of reaching constitutents like email and the Web.

While we don't have concrete information on policy positions in all districts, based on the potential for more community engagement we lean toward challengers Joyce Robinson-Paul against incumbent Sylvia Pinkney in Eckington and southern Truxton Circle's 5C02, Tim Clark over sitting commissioner Denise Wright in eastern Eckington's 5C05, Vaughn Bennett against Rayseen Woodland in 5B04 in southern Brookland, and Laura Casperson versus Arthur Yarbrough and incumbent David Hooper in central Trinidad's 5B07.

On the other hand, Angel Alston, representing 5A03 in Fort Totten Riggs Park, has made strides recently to listen more to residents instead of just casting votes on most distant matters, such as Brookland development, based on a few people's opinions.


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Thanks for posting re: Ward 5 ANCs, I really do appreciate it. However, I do need to note that 5A03 is not Fort Totten. That's Riggs Park. Fort Totten is 5A01, where Sandi Washington is running (unopposed).,_Washington,_D.C.

by the totten. on Oct 27, 2010 3:51 pm • linkreport

You'll have to get out in front on the ward and anc redistricting process. Typically, this process is shaped by the ward party operations, which are conservative. But in Ward 5 in particular, a great effort should be directed at creating more ANCs, with smaller numbers of individual SMDs and tighter geographies, so that people can better focus on their neighborhoods, rather than with dealing with issues over many square miles. Similarly, ANCs should be encouraged to create and maintain standing committees, and offer the opportunity for nonelecteds to participate on committees, as members and potentially as committee chairs, as is done with ANC6a AND anc6C, but which is called for in the ANC legislation, but is ignored by many ANCs.

by Richard Layman on Oct 27, 2010 7:28 pm • linkreport

Correction to your story!

The BBC application was reject by ANC 5C in a unanimous vote. There was Commissioner Davenport who was required to abstain, and one other commissioner who was not present at the meeting.

As for McMillan...special interest groups have "created more strife over the McMillan development" and have entered this race by endorsing my opponent to push their agenda against the will of the residents; while using awful tactics which must be addressed, no matter how difficult and outrageous they are. It's one of the largest developments in the city and is extremely important.

So your readers are aware, I am the endorsed candidate! Endorsed by CM Thomas, School board Mark Jones, Anita Bonds DCDSC Chair and ANC5C Chair, Fred Allen DC Union Leader and several of my fellow commissioners.

by Barrie Daneker on Oct 28, 2010 9:59 am • linkreport

Anyone endorsed by the local political machine is reason enough to be voted out.

by Fritz on Oct 28, 2010 12:03 pm • linkreport

I've read this again. Personally I think this endorsement is crap! "While we don't have concrete information on policy positions in all districts" Go to show you the Greater Greater Washington isn't a real journalistic outlet. Not examaining the record, and cutting up people on this article shows little effort of the real issues and concerns of resdients. GGW get your act together! And not author to the unprofessional!

by Barrie Daneker on Oct 28, 2010 3:59 pm • linkreport

Commissioner Daneker, which special interests are those?

by Neil Flanagan on Oct 28, 2010 4:58 pm • linkreport

Oh, Barrie, c'mon. I know I am going to start a war here, but really, you know exactly what happened at the BBC meeting. Stu had to abstain, and Salatti was out of town because the ANC scheduled the meeting with comparatively little notice - indeed, too late, ironically, to actually have a legal say in the process (another example of the ineptitude of the current ANC).
Oh, and since the 'real journalism' outlets aren't bothering to cover such hyperlocal things, I would like THANK GGW for covering the ANC races. ANC5C is going to be so much better going forward, so long as all the grandstanding, self-dealing, irresponsible and incredibly rude current commissioners (there is only one current commissioner running who deserves to keep a seat) are deservedly voted out of office. (and, um, in case there was any question, that's not you barrie)
Oh, and do you know what is really unprofessional, Barrie? Voting against things, and publicly trashing a business, that you 'haven't set foot inside'.

by queen on Nov 1, 2010 1:17 pm • linkreport

@ Neil-- Our McMillan group and McMillan Park committee are the special interests groups trying to stop the development of the site. They have filed lawsuits, threatened people and used questionable tactics to defeat the plans for McMillan. They are supporting and have endorsed Mr. Fournier.

@ Queen-- Yes Stu had to abstain so that vote doesn't count in any matter of Roberts Rules. As for Mr. Salatti missing the meeting, it was a regular scheduled meeting. Absent doesn't count either. Therefore the record reflects a unanimous vote. As for the legal process what you fail to realize it was not for the application but for a stipulated license. Very different things, but surely you won't give credit that I made sure the resolution stated not at this time, enabling BBC to bring it to the ANC again, once they got their application in order. BBC never needed to come to the ANC at the point they did. BBC needs a commercial zoning to proceed. We came up with a guide for ABC's it's all in there how the process works. But as usual the BBC supporters who Stu and Salatti rallied failed to hear any of that. TypicalÂ… Mr. Salatti telling half the story and getting the public to weigh in without regard for the law and the process. BTW I have been in Bib Bear 3 times. Never bought anything! And your comment about there is only one ANC you like, Salatti, well maybe the dirt should come out on how sneaky and underhanded he really is. Like having someone how doesnÂ’t live in his SMD running as a candidate to show up at a meeting because he wasnÂ’t going to be able to attend. Or the hotel bill he tried to pawn off on the DCDSC for the Denver Convention he attended. Or the flyers that were election material he attempted to get the ANC to pay for!

by Barrie Daneker on Nov 1, 2010 1:48 pm • linkreport

What about 5C01? I didn't see it on here.

by Ben on Nov 2, 2010 2:08 pm • linkreport

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