22 Oct 2018

Election 2018:

ANC Candidate Statements: Steve Holtzman, ANC 6B05

Photo courtesy of Steve Holtzman

The Hill is Home is sharing the statements of ANC candidates in our general region. Although the main focus of our blog is Capitol Hill –served by ANCs 6A through 6C– we feel that a community is made stronger by the neighbors with whom we share a close geographical area. We are honored to share candidate statements from neighbors from Ivy City to Navy Yard, with minor style edits. To all of you who are running: Thank you. –Maria Helena Carey and Kate McFadden

During the last month, I’ve walked almost every block in our constituency. I’ve spoken to many neighbors and I’ve left a flyer hanging on every door with an expression of why I am running, what background and experience I think I can offer, how I would work and what I think are some of the key issues facing the ANC in the coming few years. I have 8 blocks left to cover so if you haven’t seen me or my flyers yet, you will in the next few days.
In short, I’ve been a resident of the constituency since 1994, an active member of the community and have 20 years of experience in working with local government.

If you chose to elect me, my firm intention is to see the ANC position not as elected to represent the community with his/her best judgment but, instead, in every way possible, whenever possible, to develop and implement innovative ways to work in conjunction with you and empower you in every way I can.

I see the core issue facing our community as a complicated one with many facets some of which I try to cover in my flier. Briefly, I think that our guiding principle should be to measure approaches to the neighborhood through achieving and enhancing the “livable,walkable” nature of our neighborhood. That is where our quality of life comes from and I believe also contributes to our sustainable prosperity. This means among other things:

  • Prioritizing road, sidewalk,alley, street light infrastructure repairs and innovative anti-crime initiatives that together contribute to engender a willingness to walk at all times of the day. Supporting measures on our roads that give primacy to community needs, not to commuters. Promoting approaches that allow bicyclists and cars to safely cohabit the same roads. Slowing down commuter traffic in key streets. Independence Avenue at evening Rush hour is a great example of a problem but not the only one.
  • Paying attention to our public spaces and strategic local influence on investments in them is another key area. Please note. There will be a public meeting on Oct 30 in Eastern Market North Hall to begin community input on the major changes in the 7th Street Library. Around that time, there will also be a public meeting on the closely linked renovation of the Metro Plaza/Park including the children’s playground at 9th & South Carolina. Make your voices heard in these meetings.
  • Finding creative measures to increase the mix of affordable housing Rising home values in our neighborhood over the past several years are having a long lasting impact on the fabric of our community weakening the diverse socio-economic mix that has contributed to the eclectic and resilient social fabric of Capitol Hill. There isn’t one answer. But, I do support , with due consultation with neighbors, conversion of garages and carriage houses to increase integrated affordable housing options as well as homeowner engagement in short term rentals such as air b&b, a provision allowed for in the last version of the bill before council.

The 5 qualities of a good ANC commissioner which, if elected, I would work to achieve:

  1. A deep and broad knowledge of the constituency (the specificity of issues in different blocks and in different constituent households with specific characteristics (socio-economic status, homeowners, renters, families with children, single adults, singles and couples aging in place, etc.) and a commitment to continual renewal of this background through constant iterative interaction with neighbors of all backgrounds.
  2. A commitment to informing, but, more importantly, engaging constituents, advocating for them where appropriate, and helping them work individually and collectively to solve localized issues among themselves or with DC agencies.
  3. An inclination and a willingness to invest the time to acquire a deep knowledge of key DC regulations and laws as they pertain to areas of neighborhood concern and to identify and acquire a wide range of formal and informal relationships with the key dc officials at every level in the most relevant agencies to effectively advocate for productive results and facilitate access of constituents to the officials responsible for different areas of government service delivery.
  4. Understanding the ANC as an institution and the mechanisms it uses to attempt to achieve community objectives. (e.g., it’s role in liquor licenses for restaurants as a way to negotiate sanitation/rat control issues with restaurants; it’s role in reviewing building permits as a vehicle for shaping the future skyline, density, quality of life and consistency in the neighborhood); parameters of action imposed by its “advisory” power and smart use of its power to convene neighborhood meetings on important issues.
  5. An unconditional willingness to explicitly commit the time necessary to carry out the duties of an ANC commissioner. This allotment of time reaches far beyond simple attendance of ANC meetings.
    Please feel free to contact me if you would like to meet or have any questions. sbholtzman@yahoo.com

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