DC ANC 2B03 Commissioner
Duties: Serves as a member of
the Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC). Commissioners represent the
views of residents of their
Single Member District (SMD). After deliberation and votes, the ANC
Commission advises the Mayor, Council and executive agencies in local
matters such as parking, zoning, traffic, liquor licenses, permits,
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Vincent E. Slatt
What is the most important issue facing your Single Member District and how do you intend to address it?
How will you engage with residents to be an effective Commissioner, especially reaching those who are unfamiliar with the role and value of ANCs?
Is there a question you wish we had asked? If so, what is the question and how would you answer it?
Public land use in ANC2B is the biggest issue–this includes sidewalks, streeteries, and actions towards our unhoused neighbors. These issues have become contentious, as “aesthetics,” “noise,” and “parking needs” are at play. I believe public land belongs to the public, not the parkers, and we need to make sure that it is used for the benefit of all neighbors, including the unhoused, to share the space and share the benefits of urban density. As commissioner, I will work with petitioners to craft proposals that maximize the benefits for and improve the quality of life of all residents, not just the businesses involved. The zoning and permitting processes are cumbersome, so I will leverage my position to support ANC2B's commitment to outdoor cafes and restaurants as an “important element in the ambiance and charm of Dupont Circle” (from its 2021 policies manual). I do not like the “voluntary agreement” system that forces restrictions on public space use and will seek to minimize them.
Attendance at ANC meetings is too low-only a fraction of residents participate in the meetings, much less the committees. Those who do are very vocal and their views do not, necessarily, represent the voices of most of their neighbors–they are just the loudest. To effectively engage with residents, I will advocate that the entire commission improve its outreach activities beyond its website and agenda announcements. I plan to engage residents through my social media accounts, local listservs, and through frequent direct emails. Former commissioners in our district have had successful newsletters and I will seek to obtain their contact lists and directly engage with their (former) readers. I intend to hold “office hours” at a restaurant so people can casually meet me, and I will hand out fliers at our grocery store, informing people about the meetings and getting their voices heard. To be effective, however, I will bring their ideas back to the commission to influence decisions.
I wish you asked about my motivations to run for a non-partisan, non-compensated, volunteer position whose workload is intense and completely in my free-time outside of my actual career. I would answer that I truly love my neighborhood, have been grateful for the privilege to live in it for 18 years, and want to plan its future. I am a single, cis, gay man, a cyclist, and a long-time renter; people like me are not often represented in local government, and I believe I have something to contribute to our neighborhood. I’ve been a voter since helping my grandmother at the polls as a child and have always been proud to participate in the system; serving in an elected capacity seems like a natural evolution of that. I’ve participated in local meetings for years, worked with the businesses, and even lost my first campaign. Each of my experiences with local government have only deepened my belief in our system–and the ways it needs to evolve. I seek to be a part of that evolution.
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