There are 21 Single Member District (SMD) seats up for grabs on the November 6 ballot in three different local ANCs: 2B/Dupont, 2F/Logan and 1B, which includes most of the U Street corridor. Recently we introduced you to the candidates, including Erling Bailey (see Know the Candidates in Contested ANC Races). Bailey will face John Carlos Green, Zahra Jilani and Dan Wittels on election day.
Now, it’s Question and Answer Time on the issues.
Borderstan: What will be your first priority/new initiative if you are elected to ANC 1B and why?
Bailey: I will introduce our community to specific values associated with my campaign VISION of becoming a Sustainable Based Community. The community and I will implement a plan to move forward and I will facilitate our journey toward the goal. Details are found on website (www.erlingbailey.com) under PLATFORM.
Borderstan: How will you engage your constituents on issues so that your decisions reflect that of the majority of your Single Member District?
Bailey: I will engage constituents through various methods to ensure an enhanced cross section of opinions. The primary method of engagement will be a comprehensive collaborative web‐based communication tool. This portal will provide users a source of information, a platform for expressing feedback, and voting component to poll and assess majority opinions. This tool will provide real-time data and information for all concerned.
Borderstan: What value do you think neighborhood associations provide, and how do you plan to interact with them?
Bailey: Neighborhood Associations provide a tremendous value as one of the main sources of engaging and communicating with community. Also they allow us to partner with our surrounding SMD’s to ensure our goals and objectives are in sync so we are all moving in concert toward the common good of our larger community. I will continue to participate in neighborhood associations as a member and build strong relationships to ensure we are working as a cohesive group of SMD’s building a better future.
Borderstan: Becoming “the next Adams Morgan” is a consistent fear expressed in in the neighborhood. Would you support a liquor license moratorium for the 14th and U corridor? If so, why? If not, why?
Bailey: If we truly understand the actions that transformed Adams Morgan and learn from them, we will prevent history from reoccurring. I believe there are other less binding but equally effective ways to monitor the proliferation of liquor licenses’. I believe we should explore the options associated with revoking liquor licenses not being utilized and amend the licensing process to include a renewal period in which businesses conduct will be evaluated as a renewal authorization component. Ultimately the decision belongs to the 1B12 constituents and I will represent their voice.
Borderstan: Do you believe the voluntary agreement process for liquor license applicants needs to be changed? If so, how?
Bailey: From what I have seen they have been an effective tool for assessing proprietors true operational values, behavior and practices. This serve as an indicator as to what can be expected should the agreement be lifted.
Borderstan: Logan Circle and the 14th and U corridor area is now a destination spot for people throughout the DC Metro area, especially on weekends. Do you believe that the police presence, particularly on the 14th, U Street and 9th Street corridors, is adequate, especially on weekends?
Bailey: No! Recent area shootings, petty crimes, robberies, and assaults are indicators supporting the fact. The police presence is inadequate and increased funding is needed to enhance neighborhood safety. I believe the most likely means of acquiring the needed resources is through establishing a neighborhood BID that would generate additional funding.
Borderstan: The pace of development is rapid in the area, especially along 14th Street NW. Do you think more commercial buildings would be good for the area, as opposed to more residential buildings?
Bailey: The commercial office building component is a segment of our community under represented as indicated by the issue of restaurants, service based and product based businesses having issues with acquiring enough weekday, daytime customers to cover their operational cost. Another indicator is the morning flight of residents from the community. I would like to see a commercial building or manufacturer bring day time vitality to our community. Our developers have adopted the practice of proposing mixed use buildings which include retail, market‐based and low‐income housing. I think the time is appropriate to challenge developers to incorporate a commercial-office component into their mixed use formula.
Borderstan: Are there types of business in the neighborhood that stand out as something we need more of in the area? If so, can you name three?
Bailey: I believe the strength of a community is defined by its total offering, businesses being only one component. I’d like to consider all neighborhood offering in my response.
- Full Services Grocery Store – Negotiations to fulfill this need are in process with Trader Joe’s.
- Self Sustaining Manufacturing Business – An industry increasing community daytime population, employment, activity, revenue, and growth.
- Community Gardens – we currently have no Green Space component in our immediate or surrounding SMD’s. Utilizing the block of vacant land surrounded by U, T, 12th and 13th Streets to grow produce, which is attended by the youth and homeless, and is sold at our Saturday morning 14th and U Street Farm’s Market would be beneficial to all.