It has been quite a month.
Regular Meeting Items: Our first full set of meetings for 2017 had a light agenda. Of note was a revision to our newly adopted short term rental policy enabling renters, by permission of their owner, to rent their home out for short term stays. We also allowed multiple contracts for one homestay. We approved loans to APAH to move forward with purchasing several buildings in Westover and renovating them for affordable housing. At the same time, we strengthened our Tenant Assistance Fund (TAF) to make it more efficiently tailored to the needs of individual projects. The TAF is one way we support tenants when their rental units are being refurbished so they can afford to stay in Arlington and return to those units when they are ready, or find another home in Arlington.
Metro: Some upcoming SafeTrack work will affect Metro quite a bit here in Arlington. If you ride Metro, you should be aware that the Blue Line will be closed between Rosslyn and Pentagon from February 11th to 28th. Riders will have to use the Yellow Line for travel between Pentagon City/Crystal City and downtown DC. The ART 43 express bus between Crystal City and Rosslyn/Courthouse and ART 42 bus between Pentagon and Ballston are alternatives for travelers to North Arlington. There will be Blue and Yellow Line single tracking in Alexandria in March through early April, which will affect riders in Arlington as well. You can watch Christian Dorsey’s report at our meeting (scroll to the 55-minute mark), or check out the Metro or Arlington Transit websites.
Great People: I really enjoy our Board meetings when we highlight special people in the County. It’s always good to remind ourselves how people can touch others and make Arlington the great community it is just by doing a good job or good volunteer work. You can watch the County Manager recognize Christine O’Connor for her work with our most vulnerable (scroll to 1:23) and Katie Cristol present the Connect With Kids Champions award to Tara Magee for her work helping our court-involved teens and to Allen Beland for his volunteer work at Phoenix Bikes (35 minute mark). My favorite comment was from Evelyn when she said that Allen helps kids at the bike shop, but also “gives life tips to help me grow into a better person.”
Big Announcement: Today I joined the Governor, Congressman Beyer, and my colleagues to announce that Nestlé Corporation will be moving to 1812 N. Moore Street in Rosslyn. I had the pleasure of meeting with members of their executive team last year to talk about the advantages of living and working here, and I am delighted they are coming to Arlington.
Next up will be the Manager’s budget in February. That will be a very packed set of meetings as we have many projects, including the new school at the Wilson site, coming before us.
On a personal note, like many of you, I have found myself along with my daughters and millions of people of good will around the world demonstrating for government that is welcoming, values everyone, and follows the rule of law. This work is keeping me quite busy. If you’d like to know what you can do, just reply to this email and I’ll be happy to provide some suggestions.