City Paper Widget

Monday, October 6, 2014

ANC1B Commissioner Attendance Report: Improving

At the regular monthly meeting of Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC) 1B/U Street last Thursday, October 2, seven Commissioners were in place at the announced meeting start time of 7pm and an eighth arrived shortly thereafter. There was no trouble achieving a quorum and conducting business.

At the beginning of the meeting, ANC1B Chair James Turner (Commissioner for district 09) announced "our new quorum requirement is six", meaning, six of 11 sitting ANC Commissioners would have to attend for a meeting to take official votes. Although Turner did not elaborate further at the meeting, this announcement clearly means that former Commissioner Jeremy Leffler (district 02) had submitted a much-delayed resignation.

Leffler had moved out of his district several months ago but had failed to submit a resignation letter. There is apparently no mechanism to remove a Commissioner other than resignation. So, although Leffler was no longer qualified to do ANC business, he still counted toward quorum requirements. This meant the ANC had to have 7 of twelve sitting Commissioners in attendance to take official votes. In the case of at least one of the two aborted ANC1B meetings in July, six Commissioners were in attendance, so Leffler's delayed resignation meant members of the public who went to the July meetings expecting to transact business went away empty-handed. The ANC passed a resolution calling on Leffler to resign at its September meeting -- see SALM blog post of September 12.

By 7:15 on October 2, the following Commissioners were in attendance: Marc Morgan (01), Deborah Thomas (04), Ricardo Reinoso (05), Dyana Forester (06), Juan Lopez (07), Mark Ranslem (08), Turner, and Zahra Zilani (12).

At the beginning of the meeting, Turner announced that Commissioner Sedrick Muhammed (district 03) had sent a message saying he could not come to the meeting.

Of all ANC1B Commissioners clearly running for re-election, Muhammed has missed the most meetings. Including this latest absence, Muhammed has attended 12 of 23 meetings -- or 52% -- since this ANC session began in January 2013. For data on Muhummed's attendance (and that of other Commissioners), see the blog post by Nick Baumann, Chair of ANC1B liquor-licensing affairs committee, on ANC1B Commissioner attendance. Baumann's information was the subject of the SALM blog post of August 25.

Commissioner E. Gail Anderson Holness (district 11) also sent a message saying she would not be able to attend the meeting. Holness is not running for re-election to the ANC. She is running for Ward One representative on the DC State Board of Education.

Chair Turner also announced that he believed Commissioner Allyson Carpenter (district 10) would be attending the meeting, but by the time I left the still-ongoing meeting at 9pm, she had not arrived.

There will be at least one separate future blog posts about business conducted at this meeting.

The next scheduled meeting of the full ANC1B is at 7pm, Thursday, November 6, at the Reeves Center (14th and U Streets).

ANC1B, in addition to U Street, includes all or part of the following neighborhoods: Columbia Heights, LeDroit Park, Pleasant Plains, Shaw, University Heights, and lower Georgia Avenue.

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