Forum: Governement and Politics
We recently moved from Mt Pleasant to Woodley. Since we recently moved, we have a lot of boxes. We got a ticket from DPW because some of our cardboard boxes of packing material, both from our stuff and from things like new furniture, were stacked on top of or next to our Supercan (there is, of course, much more than will fit in the can). Leaving aside the fact that the ticket comes certified mail, signature required, and can only be picked up between 10 and 5 at the Post Office (seriously?), the ticket appears to claim that cardboard boxes stacked next to a can in the alley are a “fire hazard.” (The alternative is that they attract vermin, but I don’t think they eat styrofoam.) Any experience with fighting tickets like this? Unpacking and furnishing a house is a process, and we’re not going to have a Supercan’s worth of garbage for some time to come.
Question for you election/legal experts out there: If I’m registered with a political party in DC, and go to vote in the June primary, but want to vote for a candidate for a local office (council member) who’s not on my ballot (due to belonging to another political party), does my write-in of that candidate still count? Or is that vote only counted on the ballots for that specific candidate’s party?
In my neighborhood there is a wasp nest. 24 hours a day, 7 days a week people exit and enter. There are often lookouts pacing up and down the block ready to alert people inside that cops are coming. Some even peer at their phones as if they have a means of early warning for when police are coming. I get random people at a ll times of day leaving trash in front of my house, and pissing on my basement steps, even though they know I live there.
Ambulances have been to this particular house on many occasions to treat people who overdose regularly… Why the activity at this house hasn’t stopped is beyond me, but one thing’s for sure, it’s a magnet for almost all the crime activity in our area, it’s obviously a wasp nest…
Neighbors are too scared to confront people as they smoke weed on the streets, and quite often, groups of kids congregate and sell drugs and litter in broad daylight while moms walk down the street with baby strollers… Heck, there’s even a school nearby with young children, but somehow the Bowser administration and Chief Lanier have no clue that this is going on in so many neighborhoods in DC, and even in NW DC, which didn’t have this kind of activity just 2 years ago.
I own my house, as any other people do, I can’t imagine how I’d sell with people hanging out all day in front of it, as this kind of activity drives home values down. This also makes me think that someone has an interest in leaving negative activity in my neighborhood to do just that. Lucky for me, I’m not selling right now, but it makes me wonder why this situation is perpetuated when I get pulled over by cops for just walking home, or for talking to a friend on the side of the street?
More recently, patrons and possibly residents of the house I’ve cited have been more aggressively hanging out in my living space, asking me questions when I’m outside, such as “Are you renting?” and for spare change… They even do drugs in my front yard, and obviously exchange drugs and cash in plain eyesight. This is not acceptable. If cops truly patrolled the streets, and if there were undercover police operations in my neighborhood, this drug house would have been closed over a year ago. Also, stiffer sanctions need to be placed on landlords that regularly rent to people who are later convicted of crimes. The landlord is very cognizant that illegal activity is happening in their property, they may even be involved in it as far as I know.
I think it’s long overdue for citizens to demand more from DC government in all neighborhoods of DC. The surge in petty crime is growing into much more serious offenses and it’s eventually going to start affecting the lives of more innocent people. DC needs to institute more operations to end drug dens (wasp nests) and carry it out in a fair and transparent manner. It is not acceptable any more for the local government to say they are “working on a solution”. The only reason why crime rates are temporarily on the decline is the colder weather, if nothing new is done, we’ll experience an even bigger surge next summer. I think this situation is coddled by a lack of neighborhood/community enforcement and foot patrols and too much reliance on speed cameras as an enforcement angle of policing. Cameras only monitor, they do not deter other crimes, nor do they catch perps. Revenue generating cameras are not a good solution for crime enforcement overall, especially citing the sheer amount of money we pay in taxes for services that law enforcement is bound to supply to us as DC residents. I hope we as citizens grow to expect more for our adherence to the law and tax payments.
I went to a civic association meeting last night, and it seemed like everybody there was universally opposed any dense development for fear that it’ll block people’s sunlight and/or increase traffic for residents (who apparently drive around their own neighborhood for some reason?). Simultaneously, they lament when businesses close because of high rent and lack of customers.
I believe dense development, if executed responsibly, is the key to getting people out of their cars, lowering real estate costs, and increasing customer- (and tax-) bases. The opposition is irrational and vitriolic. My wife and I want to be civically engaged, but I don’t think we want to make a habit of arguing with roomfulls of people that just aren’t going to get it.
Is there any organized force against the NIMBYism? Should we go it alone and just write dissents to our ANC, CM, and the zoning board? Is this an especially effective strategy? It’s a shame, because it’s easy to sit back and let the developers take on the fight themselves, but it seems like their buildings are constantly being trimmed down and scaled back because of community opposition, and we probably only have one chance to rebuild these neighborhoods!
I am wondering if anyone here has been in a car accident with a secret service agent and, if so, if you can share your experience with me.
In January of this year, my boyfriend and I were rear-ended by a secret service agent. A police officer came to the scene and wrote up a police report wherein it was noted that the accident was not our fault. We were rear-ended while stopping at a red light and the agent, who was following too closely behind us, hit the back of our car. Our bumper was seriously damaged but the car was drivable.
We were told that The Agency would contact us in a few weeks to arrange for repairs.
Now, it’s July. We have called and e-mailed again and again, but nothing has happened. The bumper is nearly falling off of our car. The estimates for getting it fixed are upwards of $900.
We just want our car to be repaired and to hopefully be reimbursed for the damage.
Have you been hit by a secret service agent? Were you ever reimbursed? What did you do?
Any help is so appreciated.
Does anyone know what is the future of the jail? Reservation 13 development starts in one year in the current employee parking lot. CCA, which runs the women/juvy jail, contract expires in 18 months. So – will CCA absorb the men’s jail and build a new facility elsewhere? Or will DC take on the women/juvy inmates? Either way – a new jail needs to be built somewhere but there seems to be no talk of it.
MD Representative Andy Harris is at it again… He has written legislation to block the legalization of Marijuana in DC, a law for which over 65% of the DC population voted in favor.
I say that since it seems that he is so interested in having an effect on the laws of our city, that we should all call into his office with our requests for what he can do to improve our city. Beware that he will probably try to do the exact opposite of what we want.
What is even more amusing about what he is doing is that if you try to e-mail him through his website, you have to use a zip code verification form to even be able to send him an e-mail, and DC zip codes do not work. I had to use a different form to send him a message with my thoughts.
Please join me in doing as much as we can to annoy Rep. Harris for trying to get involved in the policies of our city, of which he is NOT a resident.
Will the DC Gov’t relax their drug testing policies in light of the decriminalization of cannabis in DC? I’m not gonna lie — as a DC employee I hope we will be able to use marjijuana occasionally without it affecting our random testing. Anyone know if there are any changes in the pipeline?
Hi all: Has anyone been through a divorce in DC or have a knowledge of the process? City websites have not been useful thus far. It would likely be a No Fault divorce, if I understand the terms correctly. We’ve been married ~2yrs, both live in DC, have no children or joint financial accounts. Only major joint expense is home we purchased in 2009.
As we’re on fairly good terms, I’d like to keep the process as fast and cheap as possible, hence considering mediation and/or No Fault, but I’ve also been advised to first consult w/an expert, and one that has my interests in mind to someone that has my interests in mind. (Plus, its just easier to talk w/a real person sometimes.) Also may want to hire someone to do the paperwork.
So: anyone done this before? Any recs on info resources, lawyers, etc? Tips, things to watch out for? Any help much appreciated. I feel overwhelmed.
I just registered to vote in DC and when I did I was unaware of the closed primaries. I registered with no party affiliation. Is there anything for me to vote on tomorrow?
I’m in Ward 1 if that makes any difference.
Beyond watching the DC mayoral debate from WAMU, I’d love to see an actual questionnaire like we had for the at large seat up for grabs last Spring. Dcist did it and I found it very helpful.
Anyone have any resources like that?
Has anyone had a recent experience with filing a complaint with the DC Taxicab Commission? I filed via website two days after the incident happened in mid-September. I received an email confirmation from DCTC a few days after. It’s now been over 3 months and I have heard nothing further. A call to the agency left me in telephone tree hell and unable to reach a human.
Should I still hold out hope that this incident will be investigated?
I am interested in getting a speed bump added to the 110 block of fairmont. Anyone here done this for their block?
Concerned with BZA loosely approving high density zoning adjustments to permit 4 unit condo in R4, single family neighborhood
I thought that some of you might be interested to hear that the guardians of zoning rules have abrogated their duty to protect the community in order to benefit one of their own, the former Chairman of the BZA Board. The case (#18448) concerns an investor who applied for an adjustment to build four condo units in a row house normally limited to two units in an R4 area. He wants to accomplish this by popping the roof of the two story townhouse, which sits in a row of two story townhomes with similar facades. Even an adjustment to three units would have cut some balance between the interests of the community and the investor. The January 15 decision, however, places the entire burden on the community (aesthetic interruption of an historic row, higher density on a one-way single-family street, reduced parking, etc.) to benefit of an investor who wants to make more money than is legal allowable without an adjustment, which is supposed to be exceptional.
The decision is foul on two levels: how is the Board supposed to rule objectively when the applicant is represented by the former Chairperson? The decision does appear to be consistent with adjustment rules, supporting the contention that this is insider trading and influence peddling. However, the ruling has not been published so there is time to intervene. In any case, the parties against the petition plan to appeal.
The Ruling does not apply the three pronged test, which is intended to make adjustment exceptional and protect the community, stringently. The Chairman and the Board appeared to rule solely on practical difficulty, represented by financial needs of the investor. However, this financial difficulty does not amount to practical difficulty of the property. The lot is completely rectangular and ordinary, and the investor provided no evidence of surprising structural degradation. Furthermore, during the hearing the investor supported his claim by highlighted the difficulty he has experienced selling the basement unit of a three condo building he completed around the corner on 13th Street. A variance to the zoning code should not be used to increase the profits of investors or rescue an investor out of a completely predictable financial situation. The variance does represent a practical difficulty to the neighborhood, the third test. A four unit condo is substantial variance burdening the livability of an R-4 neighborhood in terms of parking, combined sewer load, and architectural cohesion.
Your concerned readers can follow the case at the address below and should write the BZA, the Board of Zoning, their Councilman, and the Mayor.
Are outdoor fireplaces legal in DC? How about firepits? And, can anyone cite DCRA regulations on either? Thanks so much.