Councilman Euille raised his concern about the long implementation time of 2005, and he hoped that normal transportation initiatives will continue to be handled routinely without compromising the final comprehensive plan. Councilman Euille restated his recent suggestion that Council avail itself more of the Traffic and Parking Board on traffic and transportation concerns.
Transportation and Environmental Services Director Baier reassured Council that all transportation projects would not be on hold until 2005. He explained that some of the very major programs will have to be prioritized through a very extensive process; however, programs such as the traffic calming program, expansion of the red light camera program, the countdown pedestrian signals and others are going to be developed and come forward over the next couple of years.
City Council: (1) received the memorandum of the City Manager dated March 22, 2001, and scheduled for public hearing on Saturday, April 21, 2001, the question whether the City should develop a comprehensive transportation policy and program, as proposed in the memorandum; and (2) at the conclusion of the public hearing, endorse the concept of, and authorize staff to proceed with the development of, a comprehensive transportation policy and program for the City, as proposed in the memorandum.
REPORTS AND RECOMMENDATIONS OF THE CITY MANAGER (continued)
18. Report from the Historic Alexandria Long Range Planning Committee.
City Council: (1) received the report of the Long-Range Planning Committee and thanked the members of the Committee for their efforts on behalf of the City; and (2) referred the report to staff for an analysis of the recommendations included in the report, and requested that staff return to Council with its analysis in the fall.
REPORTS OF BOARDS, COMMISSIONS AND COMMITTEES
ORAL PRESENTATIONS BY MEMBERS OF CITY COUNCIL
(a) Mayor Donley thanked Council Members Woodson, Pepper, Euille and Eberwein along with the City Manager for their attendance at the successful Affordable Housing conference put on by the Washington Area Housing Partnership and COG. The economic analysis and the projections that Dr. Stephen Fuller made were intriguing. He described our affordable housing problem as one of supply and demand.
(b) Mayor Donley announced that there will be a change in the docket format to include a new section other than Oral Presentations for Council Members to report on their outside activities and to share information with each other, staff and citizens to bring more meaning to some of Council Members' outside roles.
(c) Councilwoman Woodson gave an update on the Affordable Housing Task Force on which she and Councilman Euille are working. The Task Force has met at least five times with members of the community, staff, and ARHA and it has been a very public process. The overall problems are not so easily solved and we will be working both locally and regionally. The Housing Summit is May 19 from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., and the Task Force will be presenting at that time its findings. Everyone should come prepared to work to come up with solutions. This will not be a forum for testimony but will be a working session.
(d) Councilman Euille advised that the Housing Summit on May 19 is to be a working session and will come down to public commitment and political will in terms of how we end up resolving the situation in Alexandria.
(e) Councilman Euille has been attending a number of youth activities in the City within the past ten days. These are excellent programs with performances by our youth in our recreation centers and schools. Our youth have a lot of talent, and we need to expand the opportunities for a cultural arts programs for our kids to express themselves in a positive way.
(f) Councilman Euille announced that the Metro system celebrated its 25th anniversary yesterday, and there will be a month-long celebration taking place. Councilman Euille distributed copies of the commemorative book, Metro at 25, which is on sale for $14.99. There will be a big celebration program on March 30 at 11 a.m. - 2 p.m. at the National Museum in Washington. He reported that there are over 600,000 riders a day and that Metro will meet its ten-year projections within three years. The system needs to be expanded.
ORAL PRESENTATIONS BY MEMBERS OF CITY COUNCIL (continued)
(g) Councilman Euille stated that he will be visiting parts of the City with Rich Baier to look at the signage, lighting, and infrastructure. He brought up his concern about the lack of cooperation from Dominion Power which has responsibility for maintaining our public street lights. On the right-hand side of the Monroe Avenue Bridge every single light is burned out and this is a City-wide problem which he wants Council to address.
City Manager Sunderland reported they have been working with Dominion Power, and Transportation and Environmental Services Director Baier thinks things are getting better. He has been meeting with Mr. Conde, the Vice President and General Manager for Operations. Dominion is adding more crew members in Alexandria to spot and make repairs, and he reported an improvement in repair time down from 45 days on average to 9.5 days. The City now has access to a number of its corporate customers to be able to call in and get a more immediate response as with the communications program the City has with Virginia-American Water Company.
(h) Councilwoman Pepper stated that the City's drinking water tastes terrible.
Transportation and Environmental Services Director Baier explained that the taste and smell is temporary and is not toxic. Extra chlorine is used to flush the water pipes of the sedimentation which occurs over time, especially in the smaller pipes. The flushing began on March 23 and should take three to four weeks to complete.
(i) Councilwoman Pepper congratulated the ten women honored at the Salute to Women Awards sponsored by the Commission on Women. It was a wonderful event. Their highest award went to Mollie Abraham, and Grace Lynch received the Vola Lawson award.
(j) Councilwoman Pepper announced that Pat Moran was honored at the Annual Burke Awards Ceremony and received their Burke Award.
(k) Councilman Speck participated in a discussion on traffic-related matters with Captain Hilleary and Transportation and Environmental Services Director Baier. It was reported that the towing contract for Washington Street requires that a tow truck be stationed on or near Washington Street between 4 - 6 p.m. with another wrecker on standby to be able to respond to the area within 30 minutes. Councilman Speck asked that evaluate whether the hours need to be extended in both directions on Washington Street in the HOV lanes and determine if the fines should be increased from $35 by creating a separate category for rush hours zones.
Mr. Baier would like to take both those recommendations as part of the very beginning phase 1 of the transportation policy. On the issue with traffic leaving Old Town off of Washington Street as it goes west on Duke Street, they will be holding a public meeting at the end of April to talk with the residents between Washington and Patrick.
Captain Hilleary reported that two additional parking enforcement officers were added to the evening so they can start on the ticket sweep, and the wreckers have been instructed to tow the vehicles from the HOV lanes to Jones Point rather than to the impound lot.
ORAL PRESENTATIONS BY MEMBERS OF CITY COUNCIL (continued)
(l) Councilman Speck asked that City Council consider King Street Gardens. City Manager Sunderland will come back to Council with a general history of King Street Gardens, go through what are the perceived problems, what if anything Council can do and make a definitive decision.
New Business Item No. 1. City Manager Sunderland distributed to Council the proposed FY 2002 budget on CD which is available for members of the public by calling the Budget Office at 703-838-4780. He also reported that the budget message has been translated into Spanish and is being distributed.
ORDINANCES AND RESOLUTIONS
CONSENT CALENDAR (19-20)
19. Introduction and First Reading. Consideration. Passage on First Reading of AN ORDINANCE to establish the real estate and personal property tax rates for calendar year 2001.
20. Introduction and First Reading. Consideration. Passage on First Reading of AN ORDINANCE to modify the membership of the Alexandria Commission for Women.
END OF CONSENT CALENDAR
19. City Council introduced and passed the Ordinance on its first reading, set it for public hearing on Tuesday, April 17, 2001, and for second reading and final passage on Monday, May 7, 2001.
20. City Council introduced and passed the Ordinance on its first reading, and set it for public hearing, second reading and final passage on Tuesday, April 10, 2001.
21. Introduction and First Reading. Passage on First and Second Readings of AN ORDINANCE to adopt Supplement No. 24 to the Zoning Ordinance of the City of Alexandria, Virginia, as amended, and to provide for the repeal of ordinances not included therein, except those saved from repeal by this ordinance, and for other purposes. [ROLL-CALL VOTE]
City Council finally passed the Ordinance on its first and second readings.
ORD. NO. 4193
22. Consideration of Budget Resolution. [ROLL-CALL VOTE]
City Council adopted the budget resolution in order to provide a framework for budget consideration by the present Council. RES. NO. 1998
23. Consideration of City Council Schedule.
Assistant City Manager Evans reported that there is a conflict of timing with Days of Remembrance and the Valor Awards, and the City employees service awards is being scheduled for April 30. Congressman Moran apologized for not being here for the work session this evening, but it will be rescheduled before the meeting on May 8.
City Council received the updated calendar and noted the additions as follows: (1) Tuesday, April 17, 2001, Days of Remembrance ceremony at noon on Market Square; (2) Wednesday, April 25, 2001, the annual National Youth Services Day reception at 6:00 p.m. before Council's scheduled budget work session; and (3) the Affordable Housing Task Force Summit on Saturday, May 19, 2001, from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Radisson Hotel.
24. Alexandria Ad Hoc Recreation Needs Assessment Steering Committee
1 Citizen Representative From Planning District II
City Council appointed Jane Harrington as a Citizen Representative From Planning District II to the Alexandria Ad Hoc Recreation Needs Assessment Steering Committee.
25. Alexandria Affordable Housing Advisory Committee
1 Homeowner In the City
City Council appointed Robert Freedman as a Homeowner in the City to the Alexandria Affordable Housing Advisory Committee.
26. Alexandria Commission for the Arts
1 Member Who Represents the Public-at-Large As An Arts
Consumer and Participant
3 Members Who Represent Arts Education or Business Expertise
Relative to Arts and Cultural Development, Including Such Perspectives as Marketing, Finance/Funding, Tourism Promotion and Organizational Development
City Council appointed Lauren Mays as a Member Who Represents the Public-at-Large As An Arts Consumer and Participant; appointed Mary Brooks and reappointed Alisa Carrel and Leslie White as Members Who Represent Arts Education or Business Expertise Relative to Arts and Cultural Development, Including Such Perspectives as Marketing, Finance/Funding, Tourism Promotion and Organizational Development to the Alexandria Commission for the Arts.
CONTESTED APPOINTMENTSCONTESTED APPOINTMENTS
27. Alexandria Community Criminal Justice Board
Director of the City’s Court Service Unit
City Council waived the residency requirement and appointed Lillian Brooks as the Director of the City's Court Service Unit to the Alexandria Community Criminal Justice Board.
28. Alexandria Community Policy and Management Team
1 Parent Representative Who Is Not An Employee of Any
Public or Private Program Which Receives Funds From the
Comprehensive Services Act
City Council waived the residency requirement and appointed Antoinette Poindexter as a Parent Representative Who Is Not An Employee of Any Public or Private Program Which Receives Funds From the Comprehensive Services Act to the Alexandria Community Policy and Management Team.
29. Alexandria Environmental Policy Commission
City Council appointed Susan Anderson as a Citizen-at-Large to the Alexandria Environmental Policy Commission.
The meeting was adjourned at 9:55 p.m.