I Feel Sorry for Brookland


Earlier in the week it was learned that ANC 5B03 had become vacant. This seat was held by Tiffany Bridge and represented a section of Brookland. She briefly explained to the Brookland listserv why she decided to step down. It is among the more depressing posts I’ve ever read:

The seat has come open because I have chosen to step down.

The short version is, I have different ideas from the other commissioners about what, at a practical level, constitutes openness and transparency in local government. Which wouldn’t be a problem by itself (we’re all accountable at the ballot box for the kind of elected official we are, after all, and I don’t believe in telling other elected officials how to represent their districts), but the practical upshot had turned out to be: a lawsuit filed against the ANC for failing to honor a FOIA request, to which I am a party simply because I was on the ANC at the time; my subsequent lack of confidence that I wouldn’t get dragged into those kinds of shenanigans in the future by continuing to be part of that body; and personal abusiveness leveled at me from other commissioners because of my belief that our constituents are entitled to know what we’re up to and why.

I’m sorry to not complete my term- I hate being a quitter more than almost anything- but I could no longer ignore that being confident in the principles guiding my own behavior wasn’t going to be enough to keep me from getting dragged into nonsense I don’t want to be associated with.

So I’ve decided this isn’t something I can continue with. I will continue to look for other ways to serve the Brookland community that are more appropriate for me and look forward to seeing you all out and about at neighborhood events. In the meantime, I’d be happy to discuss ANC service with anyone who is interested in running for this seat.

91 Comment

  • Can we just do away with the ANCs at this point? What real purpose do they serve? What do they do other than cause trouble? I have emailed my ANC rep at least half a dozen times and have not once ever received a reply. Someone please explain to me why we need these people.

    • I get the impression there’s a HUGE variation as far as how responsible/committed individual ANC reps are. I wouldn’t want to do away with the whole ANC system just because some reps are slackers.
      It’s a pity that ANC 5B sounds like it’s marred by infighting.

      • The ANC is not marred by “infighting.” It’s classic to call it infighting when it’s dysfunction. Infighting sounds like there is a problem between personalities and stops at that door, rather than getting to the very real issues in many DC neighborhoods of displacement, gentrification and change.

        • I’m not familiar with ANC 5B and the particular situation there. It seems pretty clear from the 5B03 rep’s resignation note that there are strong disagreements within the reps of ANC 5B, and the resigning rep mentions “personal abusiveness leveled at me from other commissioners”… so “infighting” sounds like a pretty appropriate description to me.
          If you want to call it “infighting stemming from changing neighborhood dynamics,” so be it… but it’s still infighting.

    • I agree that ANCs have great potential, but have to say that Mt. Pleasant would benefit tremendously if its ANC disappeared. Lowlights from this bunch of clowns include votes to reject a city grant for improving the streetscape on Mt. Pleasant Street because it did not live up the vision of commissioners, and to oppose a zoning variance for the Mt. Pleasant Library, risking an expensive new addition and delaying its completion for months. On these and other issues, the commissioners have shown no respect for majority opinion. One commissioner regularly bickers with neighbors. City officials seem to understand this state of affairs, and accord our ANC relatively little weight. If this weren’t the case, we might have a real problem, and have to spend a lot of time getting a different group on the ANC.

  • General question about Brookland: Where do the roughly 7,000 students who attend Catholic University EAT? I figured that since Brookland is the hot new hood in DC there would at least be, you know, a restaurant or two. No dice. I went there with a friend on Saturday and walked around for 20 minutes, discovering only a Subway and I think a Chinese restaurant. How is that possible? You’re telling me that every student eats on campus and every time the parents come to visit they leave the entire neighborhood?

    • Unfortunately, yes. As a resident, I go to Menomale or Little Ricky’s. For everything else including shopping, I go elsewhere. Hoping the new construction will bring new restaurants, retail and a Whole Foods (if the rumour is true!)

      • There’s no way you are getting a Whole Foods in the near future. Sorry.

        • ^ And here we have a bitter Bloomingdale resident who paid $600k for a fixer upper and then realized it was nowhere near a Metro station. So rare to see one outside of bars catering to aging hipsters.

          • Wow. I venture that you would not say this to someone in person — this comment was really rude, out of context and really unnecessary.

          • Three strikes in one comment. Huff all you want on some bizarre personal level– Brookland still isn’t getting a Whole Foods.

          • I paid $250k for my fixer upper in Bloomingdale, and I ride the bus, so I’m pretty effing excited. 🙂 I’m so sorry for you, having missed out on buying a house in Bloomingdale and now feeling excluded. But perhaps you could save your anti-Bloomingdale comments for a post in which they’d make any sort of sense.

          • My neighborhood’s better than your neighborhood.

          • i love aging hipsters.

      • San Antonio’s is just down the street from Little Ricky’s. You’re right, there aren’t many choices yet. Gallaudet was the same way for a long while.

      • brookland_rez

        Don’t care so much about WF, but I’m definitely looking forward to new restaurants and bars.

        Students used to go to Col Brook’s tavern before it closed. And as others have said, Menomale and Little Ricky’s are good. Also, don’t forget about San Antonio mexican restaurant.

    • Dear John, I don’t know how you walked for 29 minutes in Brookland and only found the Subway and a maybe Chinese restaurant. While we don’t have alot of spots –yet, more on the way– you could have found Little Ricky’s (same block as the Subway) and 5 minute walk north of that Subway the San Antonio Grill and B-Cafe. If you walked 10-12 minutes south of that Subway you could have had some fabulous pizza at Menomale.

      God willing, we will soon have Brookland’s Finest Bar and Kitchen 4 minutes south of Subway and an outpost of Rustic across the street. And that’s just 12th Street.

    • Well, there is Menomale, Little Ricky’s, and the San Antonia Grill, all on 12th. Murry and Paul’s is a serviceable greasy spoon, but I don’t know if it is popular with students. There are several cheap and mediocre pizza delivery options which I’m sure do brisk business from the students.

      Colonel Brooks’ ownership wants to rebuild on the now-vacant lot where it once stood. It was a little bit of a student hangout in its previous incarnation and probably would be in its future incarnation, provided that it doesn’t try to go too upscale. Brookland’s Finest is trying to open on 12th as well.

      To the best of my knowledge, the opening of the latter two establishments has been blocked by the same ANC commissioners who have made life difficult for Tiffany. Furthermore, I know of several other neighborhood restaurateurs who would like to open on 12th but won’t go through the hassle, given that it means dealing with these particular ANC commissioners. Instead, they live in the neighborhood and operate their businesses elsewhere.

      Maybe we’ll get some new places in Woodridge on Rhode Island or across the train tracks in the new CUA South Campus development soon. The scuttlebutt is that there are new places on their way in those locations.

    • You were walking in the wrong direction. Also, I believe there are some food options on the CUA campus, including some chain options like Starbucks and Chik-Fil-A.

    • While I was at CUA, you took your parents, dates, etc. to Silver Spring or Union Station. College Park if you had access to a car. If you’d taken your parents around Brookland, they would have insisted that you transfer immediately for fear you might be stabbed.

      • brookland_rez

        That’s kind of funny. How long ago was this? Brookland doesn’t look that rough unless you’re from Loudon county and have never been to a city before.

      • I went to grad school at the University of Maryland, and the idea of College Park (at least at that time) actually being a DESTINATION is truly depressing. How unfortunate for CUA students.

        • brookland_rez

          I don’t think College Park is a destination for much of anything except Ikea. When I go out, it’s H St NE, U St, etc. The few little bars in College Park are geared towards the students mostly. Not a destination for anyone else.

          • Yep. The bars in College Park are geared toward mainstream undergrad students, and there’s not much in the way of restaurants (especially with Mandalay’s departure for Silver Spring). That’s why I felt sorry for Laura and her comrades, if the CUA environs at that time were so lame that College Park seemed interesting in comparison.

      • It’s obvious you have not been to Brookland in several years. Your comment is flip, malicious and insulting. I moved to DC in 2002. Here is a partial list of places you would not go to then:
        Penn Quarter
        U Street
        H Street
        Columbia Heights
        The area around the Convention Center

        Times change, neighborhoods change, the city changes. Do some research before saying something insulting.

        • Brookland John, Laura prefaced her remarks by saying, “While I was at CUA.” We don’t know when that was — could be 15 years ago. I think it’s unlikely she meant to insult Brookland; if anything, I imagine she was underscoring how much Brookland has changed since she was at CUA.
          (Me, I still sometimes marvel at how in the past 15 years, 14th Street near the Black Cat has gone from being a sketchy area where you walked quickly at night to being full of boutique furniture stores I can’t imagine shopping in!)
          And in your list above, I would disagree with the inclusion of U Street and Penn Quarter.

    • Another example of someone who posts before they think! Did you walk around in a 200 ft circle for 20 minutes? That’s about the only way you could have found the Subway and a Chinese restaurant and not found San Antonio or Little Rickys.

  • Lot of generalities here and very few specific charges. Seems to me that if you sign up for a two year term you serve it out. There may be real problems with this ANC but if so let’s here them- all this email mentions is A FOIA with no mentioning of the substance and no further discussion of the other conflicts at the ANC other than “transparency.” These very well may be legit but it’d be helpful if Ms. Bridge explained them in full.

    • Her email was not meant to explain everything. It was simply a response to another question on the Brookland listserv. Those of us who are in the ANC and have been paying attention to what’s been going on know the details. This all arises out of the ANC’s activities through Brookland’s Finest’s liquor application. At the first ANC meeting on the issue, the meeting was cut short without opportunity for all residents to be heard, and a FOIA request for the recording of the meeting was denied by the ANC–a lawsuit to appeal that FOIA denial has been filed. This is the specific thorny issue that she notes, but the ANC has been up to shenanigans her whole term. Her email was simply to provide information as to why the seat is now vacant, not to justify or explain anything that’s happened on the ANC this term.

  • Here’s the story about ANC5B trying to prevent the community from public documents.


  • Yawn. This is nothing more than sparring between the neighborhood drama queens. Neither Steptoe nor the Bridges should be allowed to speak for all of Brookland – all they do is pedal in “us and them” rhetoric and fear-mongering, and they ridicule or steamroll those who disagree with them. Read enough listserv/Twitter posts and you’ll see what I mean. The FOIA lawsuit is a red herring – the District provides the ANC with a lawyer, and Bridge is not individually liable. I suspect this has much more to do with her balancing work and family, which is understandable.

    • Eponymous: the FOIA case had nothing to do with Tiffany Bridge. She was a party to it by virtue of being a 5B commissioner. I cannot speak for any/all the reasons that may have led to Tiffany Bridge resigning from her 5B03 position, but she has shared several of them.

      I will say this, though, having attended numerous ANC5B meetings, it was plainly obvious through the eye-rolling and hushed comments directed at Tiffany by the other commissioners, the side-bar conversations that they excluded her from, and the dismissive manner by which the other members of ANC5B treated Tiffany Bridge that the other members of ANC5B was attempting to marginalize Tiffany for not rolling along with the way in which the other members of ANC5B were attempting to do business.

      • My point is that while it may be emotionally upsetting to be named in a lawsuit, there’s no practical effect on Mrs. Bridge there. And there has been eye-rolling, dismissive behavior, and disrespect on both sides in recent events. Like the Bridges, I very much support development in the neighborhood (including 901 Monroe and Brookland’s Finest). I agree with you that most of the other ANC members have behaved badly. But openly ridiculing them on social media only makes things worse and lends legitimacy to their attempts to divide the neighborhood – it plays right into their hands. Further, as they have a long history of behaving this way, and it’s a little disingenuous for Mrs. Bridge to act like she was unaware of this. Hopefully she will be replaced with someone with a bit more tact.

        • “as they have a long history of behaving this way, and it’s a little disingenuous for Mrs. Bridge to act like she was unaware of this”

          Yeah, shut up and take your traditional abuse. You knew I was like this when we got together, baby, so why you cryin about a little smack once in a while?

    • Wow @Eponymous, sexist much?

      • @the totten – Nope. The rationale offered simply doesn’t make any sense, and my suspicion would have been the same if she were a man. Most DC couples that I know are pretty egalitarian and family burdens fall heavily on both partners. And like I said – that’s a totally understandable and defensible choice. I’m just not sure it’s fair to place it all at the ANC’s feet when everyone who lives here KNOWS that they are nutters.

        • Except for the part where the ANC, and its commissioners, could be held in contempt of court for failing to turn over documents, subjecting them to fines and potential detention. DC court judges aren’t exactly fond of DC agencies not honoring legit FOIA requests.

          • I think the likelihood that it becomes a serious issue is less pertinent than the fact that it’s a risk for no payoff. Eponymous wants to judge Bridge for refusing to open herself up to hassle and liability – however slight it may or may not be – just because of the committed misbehavior of cohorts in an unpaid position. Over a basic principle of transparency.

            Nobody becomes an ANC commissioner thinking that it’s not going to be a pain in the ass at some level; even if they’re planning on being no-show and purely self-interested they have to do something to get the votes to get elected. But this is all __unnecessary__ hassle and liability – it doesn’t HAVE to be a part of the job.

            Personally I think this dismissal of the repercussions of being a party to a suit are overly broad. Even if someone else picks up all the legal representation there’s some logistical overhead or notifications and service, and I think only a fool fails to show up for depositions and court hearings when they’re a named party – you never know what might happen. Someone could move to sever and you might find yourself swinging in the wind, accusations could be leveled that you should be there to respond to, etc.

            So I guess if you don’t assign a value to your time it’s cool that someone else represents you without cost, but saying it’s without repercussion is just not realistic. If nothing else you now have your name in legal filings as a party to a lawsuit, something that gets turned up in background checks. Who wants to potentially be left out of a job or have to answer why they’re on that list in an interview?

            Maybe Eponymous thinks this is trivial and s/he should go after an ANC seat. But dismissing other people’s reasons for not putting up with unnecessary nonsense is BS. Make your own judgments about what is and isn’t worth your hassle. You don’t care about being party to a suit or having to relive high school, knock yourself out. But telling other people they don’t feel the way they feel is crap.

  • How on earth did they think they could get away with not honoring a FOIA request? They’re an ANC, not the Pentagon.

    • So I just read the story about this over at http://brooklandbridge.com .

      It looks like there were 15 documents that were requested through FOIA. After receiving a letter from the Office of the Attorney General for DC, this ANC Commissioner produced two of the fifteen documents. One was a letter she left at nearby residents (on ANC letterhead and most likely produced with ANC funds). The other was the ABRA notice of the establishment’s application for liquor license.

      Both of these were so clearly public documents.

      But, what’s worse…the OAG letter looks to make it pretty clear that she should not be withholding the other documents either. But, she continues to refuse to provide them to the FOIA requester (and the community), and it has to go all the way to court. Just prior to court, the OAG forces release of 8 more documents. The Court though was having none of it and clearly saw these documents as public documents and demanded that the ANC provide them to the FOIA requester.

      And, what did these documents turn out to be?
      Exhibit 3: ANC 5B 2013 Boundaries Map
      Exhibit 4: ANC5B04/Steptoe Notice of April 27th Meeting regarding Brookland’s Finest
      Exhibit 5: ANC5B04/Steptoe Agenda for April 27th Meeting regarding Brookland’s Finest
      Exhibit 6: ANC5B04/Steptoe Sign-In sheet for April 27th Meeting regarding Brookland’s Finest
      Exhibit 7: ANC5B04/Steptoe Notice of April 27th Meeting written on to indicate early adjournment of the meeting of April 27th and posted to door of Demountable Trailer
      Exhibit 8: Cmr. Steptoe email to community on April 28th explaining early adjournment of the meeting of April 27th
      Exhibit 12: Cmr. Steptoe email to community on May 9th noticing of official ABRA Placard Notice of Brookland’s Finest

      WOW! The ANC 5B boundaries map…really?? This ANC Commissioner refused to release a copy of the ANC 5B boundaries map…how arrogant. Oh, and there are some agendas and notices of public meetings…documents that were already in the public domain, she refused to provide those as well.

      This is such an abuse of power.

      POP is dead on: I feel sorry for Brookland.

      • ^ agree completely. It’s awful.

      • Who is “she”? The same ANC rep who resigned, or someone different?

        • “She is Commissioner Steptoe, a pretty infamous figure in the neighborhood. It has seemed for quite a while that she essentially uses her office to fight anything her “newcomer” constituents are in favor of, even when the numbers are heavily against her. In this most recent fight, she went door to door drumming up opposition to the new sit-down restaurant, and the final tally was something like 30 in her favor and 150 in favor of the restaurant (among immediate neighbors only). She and the commissioners on her side still lodged a formal ANC complaint against the restaurant’s liquor license, and have held up opening by months.

          Th crux of this issue is that she’s attempting to refuse to tun over documents that will show the truth behind the protest.

        • I believe “she” is the ANC commissioner who scrawled a creepy anti-restaurant message across her house in red spray paint. How has she not been voted out of office?

          • “She” is the ANC Commissioner who scrawled a creepy anti-901 Monroe Street development screed on white bedsheets and hung them from the eaves of her front porch. “She” is against Brookland’s Finest, a neighborhood family restaurant, but FOR a nightclub on the corner of 12th and Kearny which is smack in the middle of a residential area, caters largely to Marylanders, has been the source of numerous loitering and noise complaints, and is one of hang outs.

  • A shame that she didn’t stick with it and try to improve the functionality of the group. But leadership is not easy and not everyone is cut out for it.

    • Wow, that’s harsh! All she was saying was that she didn’t expect that being sued was part of the deal of being an ANC Commissioner. That doesn’t mean she’s not cut out for leadership.

      • Yeah, it kinda is. If she can’t handle the risks and can’t try to take control of the situation, and she quits midterm, it means she isn’t cut out for leadership. Which is fine, but we might as well acknowledge it for what it is. And, I have no dog in this fight.

        • You’re certainly entitled to that opinion, but it’s worth pointing out that there are 5 seats in ANC 5B. When 4 of them form a voting bloc, the 1 is not “taking control” of any situation. That’s kind of how majority rule works.

          • Leadership is not about taking absolute control, it is about swaying people to your side. It isn’t an easy skill, and often takes perserverence and a lot of creative mechanisms, especially if the group is predisposed to disagree. But, dropping out and letting those with whom you do not agree have total control only silences your position, ensuring that necessary change will be slowed or halted completely.

    • This was a FOIA request that ANC had no REAL grounds to deny but had to be forced to comply with, so can it possibly be that she didn’t want the hassle of being party to a lawsuit for something that she needent have be in the first place of the ANC had done what they were legally supposed to? Sticking around for that isn’t leadership. Leadership would have been trying to get the ANC to comply – but was something that the others didn’t seem to want to do. What was she supposed to do – she couldn’t force them (which isn’t leadership either).

      Clearly she isn’t able to do much if other ANC members do what they can to marginalize her and for situations like this it really does usually take more than one person and a lot of people who care to bring about a change. And frankly life is too short for the bullshit from the petty despots that often seem to gravitate to the only “power” that they are ever likely to have.

  • when are ANC elections held? when is the next one?

  • Next to Catholic University in NE DC.

    Just south of Fort Totten and north of “NoMa” on the Red Line.

    Come visit us sometime.

  • I find it hilarious that I’ve got one commenter complaining about my lack of tact and another complaining that I’m not being explicit enough in my reasoning.

    Since POPville’s audience is generally less familiar with the specifics of what has gone on than the typical Brookland list reader, let me try to clear up that apparent contradiction:

    The lawsuit pertaining to the FOIA case is still pending, so as a party to that case, I am choosing to say less rather than more. There are a LOT more details of it that are relevant to my decision to step down (and the Brookland Bridge blog has a very informative post about the case if anyone is interested), but many of the specifics are protected by attorney-client privilege, and while that is my privilege to waive, doing so would mean waiving it on behalf of the other 4 still-sitting commissioners. That seems like a crappy thing to do to them, and I’m trying to balance taking the high road with being honest. I’m sure some will disagree with where I’ve drawn the particular line in this situation, and that’s okay. We’ve all only got our own consciences to guide us.

    As to personal consequences to me, it’s true that the ANC is represented by OAG, but it’s ALSO true that this FOIA crap goes on all the time in DC and judges are fairly tired of it. While criminal penalties for FOIA violation are rare (though they do happen and are part of the statute), contempt of court charges are not, and personally I have no desire to sit in a cell for any amount of time for failing to honor a FOIA request when I am in fact a FOIA zealot.

    All that said, I was actually getting a lot of “she’s just resigning because she’s pregnant” which is just not true at all. Aside from it being a fairly sexist assumption (my intention was just to miss a meeting that happens to fall near my due date and then be right back into it the next month), it’s also irrelevant. Brooklanders deserve to know how their ANC functions, because only Brooklanders can hold their commissioners accountable to it.

    ANC 5B’s next public meeting wiill be September 25th at 6:30 PM, most likely at the ANC office at 1322 Irving St. NE. I encourage anyone with an interest in this topic to go; I’m sure you’ll find it very enlightening.

    • Ignore the haters, Tiffany. I think you are handling this in exactly the right way. I’d love to see one of the critical commentators here — who aren’t even brave enough to identify themselves, I note — put his or her butt on the line, facing potential legal liability, just to hold on to a thankless, unpaid position with no hope of having a meaningful impact on aNC policy. But I’m sure they fail to see the irony in anonymously attacking someone who, unlike them, is willing to identify herself and take a principled stand, for being insufficiently transparent in her explanations.

      The funniest thing from the original Brookland blog post was the totally ridiculous / incoherent explanation from the ANC Commissioner for why she refused to turn over the FOIA documents. In short, her position was NOT that these documents were not public records, but rather, in essence, she thought that whoever was trying to acquire them had an agenda, so she would simply not turn the documents over. Well, duh. Almost anyone making a FOIA request has an agenda. That is irrelevant to the underlying quesiton of whether the documents should be made public. I really hope that sort of ignorant mindset is not commonplace among ANC commissioniers, but from the sound of it, this type of FOIA response is not unique. Insane how even a tiny bit of power can go to some people’s heads.

      Brookland folks, keep the faith. I remember sitting through some ridiculous ANC meetings years ago in Columbia Heights in which a few myopic opponents of any sort of change would reflexively try to silence anyone supporting a new business, no matter how beneficial to the neighborhood. Eventually, the forces of common sense prevailed. It will happen in Brookland, eventually, as well, just may take a little time.

    • Tiffany is now the third person in a row to not make it past one term in this seat. Neither her nor her two predecessors were in this for the personal glory. They too were true civic activists, “nice guys”, who seemingly wanted to do something good for this part of Brookland. The problem is the ANC in this part of town is filled with people who seem to see the office not as a tool for good, but as a means of obstructing any change and a platform for self-promotion. We all only have so much time and effort to devote to folks who want to be Anointed Neighborhood Cranks (ANC)

      Good luck Tiffany. I imagine now you’ll actually hear a lot less crying and get more sleep, even with that newborn…

    • Tiffany – As one neighbor in another SMD from yours, let me just say that from what I’ve seen, I understand your decision to resign. I hope and know you will stay involved in Brookland happenings.

      But, correct me if I’m wrong, but since the FOIA case is against ANC 5B, and you resigned from ANC 5B, doesn’t that mean that you are no longer a party to it? Thus, aren’t you free and clear to do and say as you wish/like?

      And, if so, I would hope that you do speak up and explain to the community how ANC5B operates so that we are all informed and may have an opportunity to express our desires at the next election for ANC in November 2014.

      Speaking honestly and openly, even if it may be difficult or uncomfortable, is also a path on the high road. I hope you chose to use it.

  • Tiffany also didn’t hold any SMD meetings or seem to engage in positive ways with the community. And while her fellow commissioners are hardly blameless, I think it’s tacky that she (1) blames them, and exclusively them, for her inability to get along with them and (2) throws up her hands and gives up her position, thereby leaving 5B in the hands of people she evidently considers incompetent.

    Truth be told, Tiffany just doesn’t have the personality for politics. She can’t bridge divides, and she’s certainly not diplomatic. If she hadn’t been running unopposed, I don’t think she would have been elected.

    On the other hand, Tiffany obviously cares a lot about Brookland, but I think there are better venues for her to contribute positively to the community than in elected office.

    • give me a f’ing break.

    • I actually agree that I don’t have the personality for politics; no argument there.

      But in point of fact I did hold an SMD meeting in January. I didn’t hold more because 5B03 just doesn’t have that much going on it that’s worth dragging people out to a meeting for. And some of the open hostility directed at me came when trying to hold meetings where 5B03 residents could discuss neighborhood-relevant issues that happened to be geographically located in other SMDs. When your chair tells you to pipe down and “stay in your lane,” and you’re still trying to develop a positive working relationship with your colleagues, you shut up and do as instructed.

      Again, not trying to argue I couldn’t have done better at it. Clearly I could have. But it wasn’t for lack of trying.

      • In fairness, I should point out that I don’t have the personality for political office either.

      • This is a very good point that Tiffany makes.

        The Chair of ANC 5B, Ms. Shirley Rivens Smith, is adamant and hard-lined about not talking about or dealing with any issues outside of the boundaries.

        This means that she does not care for nor allow discussion on issues outside of 5B at ANC 5B meetings. She also has made it plainly clear that commissioners should not be worried about or holding SMD meetings about issues outside of their SMD.

        The problem for Tiffany is that her SMD (5b03) is generally just residential homes…but just a short walk away from the commercial cooridor of 12th St NE and Monroe St NE. But, should that proclude her from being able to hold an SMD meeting to talk with her constituents about what is happening in the greater ANC 5B. Personally, I don’t think so.

        This is a prime example. The vote to protest the ABRA application of Brookland’s Finest was a vote of the full ANC 5B, meaning each ANC Commissioner was able to cast a vote (which was 4-1 in support of protesting the liquor license — Tiffany Bridge being the single dissenting vote). Doesn’t make sense that an SMD Commissioner like Tiffany should/can hold a meeting to discuss issues outside of his/her SMD when it may lead to a vote of the ANC. Thus, the SMD Commissioner would be informed with how his/her SMD felt about the issue?

        According to the Chair, Ms. Rivens Smith, and Commissioner Steptoe from 5B04, they would rather that each commissioner just keep their noses in their own SMD and never cross over.

      • gotryit

        Not having the personality for politics should be a prerequisite for political office. I wish there were more like you in office. Good things might actually happen, like a year with no one stealing from disadvantaged youth.

      • Nope, I would never shut up and do as instructed in that situation. Stand up for your point and earn some respect. This job takes a lot of work, but that should be known beforehand. I think quitting midterm creates a pretty harsh result for the community. I’m not a fan of people who make a commitment and don’t follow-through, and I don’t think that they should get to look like the good guy and claim good leadership skills while doing so. I do hope this situation highlights the need for those in your district that are willing to put in the work to step up.

  • Wow. This thread makes me really glad I’m not an ANC SMD.

  • why didn’t Tiffany just leak the documents? She could at least deny being the source given there are 3 other commissioners. happens all the happen in DC government

  • I don’t feel sorry for Brookland at all. As a a resident I am happy for all of the public scrutiny. Sunlight is the best disinfectant. All of the issues with the ANC have woken up the residents and ensured that they will most likely vote the current crop out of office, or at least some of them. ANCs who operate in the shadows should be very afraid.

  • If you can stand the heat….
    Mrs. Bridge simply wasn’t tough enough to make it through one term. When several ANCs disagreed with her she got her panties in a bunch, pouted and quit. Then she went on a media campaign where here friends publish articles telling one side of the story. How can Bridge be right and all of the otherANCs be wrong? If there were any substance to her argument then she would articulate it instead of this rambling smear campaign that doesn’t tell us anything.

  • She loss a vote 4-1 and then quit. She believes she is right and everyone else is wrong. In these press releases, (that’s what they are – not news stories) written by bloggers (not responsible journalists) no one bothers to get the other side of the story. Each post quotes Mrs. Bridge in detail but none of the four ANCs that disagree with her or any of the residents, the two church pastors in that area or the residents who live across the street and next door to the proposed bar.

    • Brian posts this same nonsense on the Brookland listserv. My impression his that he has difficulty distinguishing from blogging, print or online news sources, and what exactly a press release is and is not.

      • Nonsense? You think its fair for a blogger to print an essay from Mrs. Bridge and not bother at least quoting any of the other four ANCs? The way this story reads the entire Brookland neighborhood wants a bar and one person is preventing it. Reasonably intelligent people know that is not true.

        • If you were at all intellectually honest you would acknowledge the fact that most of the people that live in the vicinity of the restaurant want the restaurant and that Ms. Steptoe isn’t representing most of her SMD. That in fact Ms. Steptoe is pro-nightclub in a residential neighborhood, or at least one particular nightclub that she has continued to support even after it had become the source of several nuisance complaints.

          • Since you follow my posts you know I don’t do things anonymously. I don’t insult any one without signing my name. Ask the PoP why he didn’t bother interviewing the other ANCs. Be bold enough to sign your name to your next insult. Especially if you want to compare intellects.

          • Um. Brian. You signed your name “everyone” in that idiotic and sexist post in which you claimed Ms. Bridge’s ‘panties were in a bunch’. If I were Mr. Bridge, I would punch you in the mouth for that comment. Since I am not, I will just point out that not only are you intellectually dishonest but that you are just plain old dishonest. On the bright side, you’d be an excellent addition to our corrupt ANCs if only you lived in the SMD.

  • Brian,

    Please. I didn’t insult you. Weak dodge. Weak sauce my friend. I said that if you were being intellectually honest (I guess if you’d examined the public record anyway) then you would know most of the neighbors of this proposed restaurant want it. That the ANCs voted 4-1 against isn’t any indication that the neighborhood did. PoP doesn’t have any duty to interview the other ANCs. Why don’t you ask them yourself and report back to us? Maybe the question you SHOULD ask is WHY if the neighborhood is for this family restaurant in the neighborhood and the ANC voted against this restaurant. Also, you might want to ask why the ANC vigorously SUPPORTED a NIGHTCLUB in the same vicinity that has been a frequent source of problems: noise complaints, fights on the street, empty cognac bottles from patrons after parties in their cars, etc.

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