Community Living is Essential

Community living has its advantages and  most residents seem to take an interest in the Advisory Neighborhood Commission community engagement meetings in Ward 5A .  Often times the meetings are held on Wednesday\’s, and these are not the typical work or boardroom meetings. There\’s an agenda, and residents are given the opportunity to bring forth any concerns they might have, and that they did at tonight\’s meeting. Before we recap the residents of Ward 5 concerns which weren\’t that many; there were more residents in attendance than concerns so that\’s a pretty good meeting, perhaps.

Upon arrival to the ANC 5A meeting at the Community College of the District of Columbia, Attorney General Karl Racine was speaking to the residents.  Apparently WalMart has great prices, but fails to meet commitments of DC while continuously expanding. Moreover, no super center for the residents in Ward 7.  According to the District Attorney General the living conditions in the living spaces right above the WalMart, located in Ward 5, were in no condition for a healthy living environment, and although repairs possibly had been made, they were not permanent repairs.

Racine has been in his position for a little over one year and he has yet to grasp the rhythm of the Council. However, with the public\’s support they can get things moving he suggests.  He was very happy to answer the residents questions and one in particular stood out \”what is going on with the Board of Elections?\”  Residents of the District organized to get an initiative of $15 hour minimum wage jobs on the ballot for a vote, and the DC Chambers of Commerce filed a lawsuit against the residents. Judge Ross ruled the measures was not properly placed on the ballot noting that some Board member\’s terms had expired.  Budget autonomy has been granted to the District since no appeals have been set forth.  The meetings are not boring and residents seem to get insightful information which impacts their community. This is why you should be at your next Advisory Neighborhood Commission meeting.

The Ward 5A ANC Commission awarded a grant to the Beacon House which is a scholar program for young boys who are required to perform on the basketball court and in their communities.  The grant assisted the young men with basketball uniforms which enhanced their performance so much some of the young men landed scholarships with Division 1 sports leagues.  The Beacon House honored the Commission for their support and efforts with a plaque.  After accepting the plaque, the Commissioners then discussed some more agenda items and proceeded to open the floor for questions. Commission Chair Alston could barley get a complete sentence out before one resident raised her concern.

Mr. Locket raised a concern stating \”the potholes are deplorable, and the contractors aren\’t coming back to fix the repairs.\” When asked who had he addressed his issue with it, and it was one of the Commissioners, some of the residents chuckled. He was told to wait on the city, and he replied \”I must be on crack\” and suggested he \”would contact 7 on your side since he pays taxes just like the store owners.\”  Other residents were more concerned with the proper communication channels to get their concerns in writing to the commission.

No worries if the residents were hungry since pizza was provided along with bottles of water.  Government agencies like CSOSA were there to inform residents that in the month of April they recognize \”Sexual Assault Month\”; reintroducing the sex offenders unit and registry.  Overall this ANC 5A meeting was very informative for the residents.

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