ANC2E Full Report, January 30, 2012
ANC Report: Full House on DCFEMS, DCRA, Pepco, Food Trucks and Evermay.
Got all that? In an especially full and varied meeting Jan, 30, Advisory Neighborhood Commission 2E tackled a packed line-up:
Fire & EMS
Chief Kenneth Ellerbe, of D.C. Fire & Emergency Medical Services, fresh with his department's safety and health demonstrations at the Georgetown Safeway Jan. 28, addressed the meeting and stressed the role of firefighters who are also paramedics and emergency responders. Ellerbe's insistence on the use of the full name—and not just "DCFD" (the chief ordered uniforms and t-shirts must show the full acronym, DCFEMS)— has some firemen and members of the union bothered. But the chief continues to talk about the department's "soft presence on the streets" and the 161,000 calls in 2011: 130,000 were medical, and only 500 were real house fires. Ellerbe also said the department had gotten 25 new ambulances and defended the newly proposed firefighters' working hours of 12 hours on, 12 off.
Building Collapse Still Unknown
Nicholas Majett, director of the D.C. Department of Regulatory and Consumer Affairs, talked about how the agency "touches everyone," and then dealt with the partial collapse of the building at 1424 Wisconsin Ave., N.W., as well as regulations on the newly popular food trucks around the city. The partial collapse happening Thanksgiving Day, and there is a stop-work order on the site. The owner must hire a structural engineer to determine the cause—a possible conflict of interest that commissioners found troubling and said so to DCRA's Bill Davidson and his boss. Citing a construction collapse of a Wisconsin Avenue building ten years ago, which was owned by the same businessman and about one block to the south, commissioner Bill Starrels recalled, "The owner has a history as a bad actor." Owner Robert Solomon of the 1422 Wisconsin Ave. building complained about a window being bricked up. The cause of the collapse remains undetermined, and DCRA needs to know if it is to issue a permit for rebuilding at the site, which was slated to became a Z-Burger eatery.
Where Food Trucks May Park
As for food trucks, the commissioners voted to ask that they not park on residential streets. Current law allows them to park in any legal spot.
Evermay to House S&R Foundation
Evermay's zoning variance request was approved in a most collegial manner. Evermay LLC requested that the S&R Foundation, headed by the property's new owners, biotech business partners and spouses Ryuji Ueno and Sachiko Kuno, be allowed to operate from the estate at R and 28th Streets with strict restrictions on frequency of events and number of employees. The foundation's mission encourages musical and scientific excellence while it promotes American and Japanese ties and studies responses to disasters, such as tsunamis or earthquakes. S&R Foundation attorney Alice Gregg Haase listed the restrictions, which include parking all cars on Evermay's land, no outdoor amplified music, no more than 100 persons on regular events and more. The ANC voted to review the approval after five years, not seven as was requested by the foundation. "This is the way it should work," said ANC chair Ron Lewis. The zoning commission will make its final decision at the end of this month.
Hey, Be Alert: Lock It
The monthly police report by Metropolitan Police Department officer Kathryn Fitzgerald stated the obvious: lock your doors and secure your items. One business cash register was robbed when employees left keys in the register; another left its business office doors unlocked and was robbed. (The perps were caught.) As for iPhone thefts, need we say more?
Better Wiring in the Hood
Pepco officials were also at the meeting to discuss outages and how the utility is switching neighborhoods to different electrical grids, such as Hillandale, and upgrading lines as well—all to improve service in Burleith.
Hang On, O and P
For the O and P Street Project: the 3400 block of P Street should be complete now. Check FixingOandPStreets.com for updates, such as a utilities turn-off next week.
Quick question: Who said the following? "Rocky's Report should be taken with a grain of salt." It was ANC chair Ron Lewis speaking of Georgetown University's more personable approach to campus crime reporting. More quotes this and next week on the zoning commission's decision—expected momentarily—on the university's 2010-2020 campus plan.