YORKTOWN CIVIC ASSOCIATION TO HOST ARLINGTON COUNTY BOARD CANDIDATE DEBATE OCTOBER 1ST:  

On Monday October 1st at its general membership meeting, the Yorktown Civic Association will host a debate between Arlington County Board candidates Matt de Ferranti and John Vihstadt.

The meeting will start at 7:30pm, and take place in the Patriot Room at Yorktown High School. All interested Arlingtonians are invited to attend.

About Matt de Ferranti

Matt de Ferranti began his career as a teacher in a low-income community in Houston and has subsequently used his skills as a lawyer to help people build better lives for themselves and their children in positions at Feeding America, Habitat for Humanity, Rebuilding Together, and the Education Trust. He now works for the National Indian Education Association, where he serves as Senior Legislative Counsel, seeking to improve educational opportunity and outcomes for Native American students. Matt serves on Arlington County’s Housing Commission (since 2013) and the Arlington Public Schools Budget Advisory Council (Chair in 2017-2018 and since 2014) and the Joint Facilities Advisory Commission, which brings Arlington County, Arlington Public Schools, and the community together to plan for our future. Matt is a 2015 Leadership Arlington Graduate, a 2016 graduate of the Sorensen Institute for Political Leadership, and a 2017 graduate of Arlington Neighborhood College. Matt grew up in McLean and lives in the Courthouse neighborhood.

About John Vihstadt

John Vihstadt harnessed over 30 years of schools and community activism to win a seat on the Arlington County Board in 2014 as the first Independent in decades. As past president of his neighborhood civic association and the Yorktown High School PTA, co-chair of a School Bond campaign, and as a member of the Arlington County Civic Federation Board and the Housing, Aging and Planning Commissions, John hit the ground running and built a record of accomplishment from his first year in office. John is running for re-election to build upon his first term achievements, including the refocus of our spending priorities to core services and the establishment of an independent County Auditor. Going forward, John’s community-centered vision includes managing our growth, greater openness and transparency in decision-making, and ensuring that cost and value are a part of every conversation. John brings true discussion and balance to the County Board. He hopes to earn your vote to secure another term on Tuesday, November 6. Visit https://voteforvihstadt.com.

by David Gelman
djgelman19@gmail.com

Our headliner at our last Yorktown Civic Association meeting was Delegate Rip Sullivan. Rip represents the Yorktown community in the Virginia State House of Delegates. He gave a detailed  narrative of what happened in Richmond during the latest session. Bipartisan support for the funding bill and Medicaid expansion has probably the biggest successes. 70 gun safety bills were introduced and all were defeated without debate. For the 2019 session, Delegate Sullivan would like to see bills passed to end partisan Gerrymandering, reduce gun violence, and address the opioid crisis.

The Lee Highway planning initiative begins early next year. Please engage in the community visioning process and other events. Visit the LHA website www.leehighwayalliance.com for more information.

Campbell Maloney and the Traffic Safety Committee continued their good deeds. After dozens of emails and phone calls to the Arlington County Transportation Engineering & Operations Department, the pedestrian safety bollard at the corner of 26st and Harrison Street were replaced. Members of the Yorktown community also alerted Arlington County Staff and  Dominion Power about the street light outage on N. George Mason Dr. The street lights were repaired after a few weeks.

The Yorktown Civic Association Executive Committee continues to move toward incorporating the civic association as a 501(C)4 nonprofit corporation. The draft By-laws are almost done and will be posted on the Yorktown Civic Association website soon.

For the October YCA meeting, we will be holding an Arlington County Board candidates debate featuring John Vihstadt and the Matt de  Ferranti. Please be prepared to ask lots of questions during the question and answer period. Many thanks to Dave Gelman for making all of the arrangements for the debate.

Finally, please pay your dues. Annual membership dues are $20 and lifetime membership dues are $100. Also, the Yorktown Civic Association newsletter reaches more than 1,000 local households. If you own a local business, consider purchasing an ad in the YCA newsletter. Contact Dustin Anderson for more information.

I look forward to seeing everyone at Marymount Farmers Market Oktoberfest on Saturday, October 13th. Don’t forget to post your Halloween pictures on Nextdoor and Facebook.

Have a great fall. No more rain!!!

Mike Cantwell
President, Yorktown Civic Association

Arlington County’s Tree Canopy program provides the free trees. These are 7–8 foot trees with $300-400 retail value. The trees will be planted in the fall. The Arlington/Alexandria Tree Stewards, a volunteer organization, are assisting applicants. An application form and instructions are at www.ecoactionarlington.org/trees/

Let us plant a tree on your property. You’ll be making a wise investment and improving the neighborhood for generations to come. Act now!

Application Deadline is June 11, 2018.

Civic Association Meeting May 2nd at 7:30 p.m. in Patriot Hall at Yorktown High School.
Guest: Arlington County Board Member Libby Garvey

Topics

  • Arlington Budget … priorities and tough decisions
  • Lee Highway … planning
  • Yorktown HS modification … Use permit for 2200 students
  • Drugs in our schools
  • School safety … school/ACPD preparation and response
  • Traffic Safety
  • Q & A

Libby Garvey will address Yorktown and the next Civic Association meeting. Civic association business will be on the agenda first, and then we will hear from Ms. Garvey. She will discuss crime, school safety and other issues, starting at 8 p.m., with a Q&A following.

Garvey was elected to the Arlington County Board in 2012, after serving on the Arlington County School Board for 15 years.
She began her career as a teacher in the Peace Corps. She worked as a legislative aide to Congressman Lee Hamilton and as an associate director of the Mount Holyoke College Washington Internship Program. She is a member of the Council of Governments Emergency Preparedness Council. Virginia Governor Mark Warner appointed Ms. Garvey to serve on the P-16 Education Council, a position she continued under Governor Tim Kaine.

Throughout her career, Ms. Garvey has been involved in many community organizations, including vice president of the County Council of PTAs; vice president of the Fairlington Civic Association; and vice chair of the Advisory Council on Instruction. She was a member of the Abingdon and Drew elementary school PTAs and the H-B Woodlawn Program’s Parent Advisory Committee. She established the Kennan Garvey Memorial Fund for Phoenix Bikes in memory of her husband, and is serving on its board.

by Elizabeth Kiker
elizabeth.kiker@gmail.com

From Winter Storms to Spring Flowers …

March came in like a lion with Winter Storm Riley. The Cantwell family finally has power, but still no Fios. I am writing the President’s letter on Saturday, March 3rd and hope that Fios will be working by Sunday so I can hit send and avoid missing yet another Yorktown Civic Association newsletter deadline. A big thank you for all of you who helped your neighbors during and
after the storm.

Yorktown Civic Association held a general membership meeting on Wednesday, December 13, in the Yorktown High School Cafeteria. At the meeting, those in attendance elected the slate of candidates including myself (President), David Friedman (Vice President), James Churbuck (Secretary), Dustin Anderson (Treasurer), and the At-Large members of the Executive Committee: Terry Costello, David Gelman, David Haring, Elizabeth Kiker, Craig Mastangelo, Brian O’Flaherty, and Frank White. I appreciate the hard work and dedication of the Executive Committee. Thank You! We also announced the launching of our new website at www.yorktowncivic.org. A big shout out to Campbell Maloney of blueunderground for designing and developing our new website. Nice work Campbell! The Executive Committee also provided updates on the Chestnut Hill Park expansion, information on elementary and middle school boundary changes, and the progress of the Lee Highway Alliance (LHA). Finally, we shared our vision for incorporating the Yorktown Civic Association as a 501(c)(4). By incorporating YCA, we will be able to provide greater transparency and record-keeping and limited liability protection for the officers of the Yorktown Civic Association.

The Yorktown Community was busy again between December and March. The LHA continues to make progress towards making Lee Highway a better place. The LHA Board of Directors held their annual meeting on January 11, 2018 at their new home at 4620 Lee Highway, Suite 208. During the meeting we reviewed and approved the budget. For more information about LHA, please visit the LHA website. Dustin Anderson (YCA Treasurer) attended a meeting to discuss a proposal to replace the Alpine with a new three or four story (43’) building. The building would house the new Children’s School with approximately 230 students. The YCA EC supports schools and child care facilities, but has some concerns about traffic.

On March 2nd, I joined more than 20 civic association Presidents at a round table discussion with Mark Schwarz, the Arlington County Manager. It was a productive discussion with many good ideas shared between the Presidents, County Staff, and the County Manager.

Unfortunately, we also had a series of car break-ins in our community. I spoke with CAPT Giroux and he encouraged everyone to lock their car doors, remain vigilant, and call the police if you see something out of the ordinary. Video surveillance systems were also discussed and I proposed inviting a few vendors to a future YCA meeting. I also expressed my concerns regarding school safety and drug use in our community.

The YCA EC invited Arlington County Board Member Libby Garvey to our next meeting. Please attend!
Have a safe and happy spring.

Mike Cantwell
President, Yorktown Civic Association

Participating in the Yorktown Civic Association is a great way to learn about progress (and pitfalls) of living in Yorktown; to connect, collaborate and occasionally commiserate with neighbors; and to stay up to date on all the neighborhood news worth knowing.

The December 13 meeting, held at Yorktown High School, will be our annual business meeting, with elections needed to keep our Executive Committee going, and a thoughtful discussion around the idea of incorporating in Virginia.

It will also be a time to share holiday snacks, baked by the Yorktown Civic Association Executive Committee (we’ll vote on the favorite!) as well as connect with old friends and new neighbors. To entice you out during this busy holiday season, we promise to have hot apple cider; delicious cookies; a relatively quick business meeting.

Please join us at 7:30 p.m. in Yorktown High School Patriot Hall on Wednesday, December 13–use door #8 near the basketball courts. Future meetings will feature county speakers, school topics and more opportunities to connect with your neighbors. The only thing missing from the Yorktown Civic Association is YOU!

by Elizabeth Kiker
elizabeth.kiker@gmail.com

The Yorktown Civic Association (YCA), created in 1992 via merger between Milburn Terrace and Garden City Associations, serves the common needs of our community. The leaders of the YCA are considering incorporating in Virginia, which would mean clarifying our mission, updating our bylaws and would allow us to purchase directors’ insurance.

Currently, the mission of the YCA is: to preserve the quality of our neighborhood; to keep the community informed on issues that impact us; and to be an advocate for the community on those issues with local and state government. In addition to reaching out to neighbors and experts, we are in discussion with other neighborhood groups in Arlington to learn from their work.

As we start to revamp the bylaws, mission, and election processes, we’d love to hear from YOU. We’ll start this discussion at the December 13 2017 meeting. Join us!

by President Mike Cantwell
mcantwell@msn.com

In an attempt to relieve overcrowding at Arlington middle schools, most notably Williamsburg and Swanson, Arlington County has been considering a variety of revised school boundary options. The new school boundaries allocate students to the new middle school that will open in 2019 at the Stratford site. Students who will be affected by these changes are those currently in grades 4, 5 and 6.

At the “What We Heard” meeting held at Yorktown HS on Wednesday October 25, APS staff presented drafts of only two refined options, A and B, that the county was considering before submitting their recommendations to the school board for their vote. The current middle school student population is 6,613 students, with roughly 1,300-1,400 students proposed to attend the new middle school. Their handouts noted that a majority of students will remain in their current middle school attendance zone and that more than 50 percent of students are in the potential walk zone for 4 schools.

APS will reassess the transfer policy for middle school students for 2018-2019 after the new boundaries have been finalized. Of most importance, according to APS, is that none of the middle schools will be over 110% capacity in 2022. As of November 8, APS favors option A and is no longer considering option B. Superintendent Dr. Murphy presented his recommendation
for middle school boundaries on Nov.14, 2017. Citizens also were able to speak up on Nov. 30, 2017. For information about speaking at a School Board meeting, visit www.apsva.us/school-board-meetings/sign-up-to-speak/. School Board action is scheduled for Thu, Dec. 14,

by Craig Mastrangelo
craigmastrangelo@gmail.com

The Yorktown Civic Association Bylaws state that the “Association shall elect biannually from among adult (over 18) full-time residents of member households a President, Vice-President, a Secretary, a Treasurer, and seven at-large directors, who collectively shall constitute the Executive Committee.”

The bylaws stipulate that nominations for the Executive Committee must be published in the newsletter prior to the fall membership meeting where the election takes place. The terms of the officers shall begin on the first day of the month succeeding that in which they were elected and are for two years. The following slate of officers and members of the Executive Committee is being proposed for the December 13, 2017 YCA meeting. The slate is as follows:

  • President: Mike Cantwell
  • Vice President: David Friedman
  • Secretary: James Churbuck
  • Treasurer: Dustin Anderson
  • At-Large members: Terry Costello, David Gelman, David Haring, Elizabeth Kiker, Craig Mastangelo, Brian O’ Flaherty, Frank White.

We are also soliciting members to sign up for “Executive Committee Member in Waiting.” As members leave the Executive Committee, these members would be appointed to join the Executive Committee. Members of the YCA can volunteer to be placed on the list at the December 13 meeting.

by David Haring,
jacmatt@verizon.net

YCA Sets Attendance Record; Meets Alliance

Join us at our next YCA meeting: December 13 at 7:30 p.m. Each member of the YCA board is bringing cookies to share; extras will be given to residents who attend! It’s also our annual election.

In September, more than 60 residents (a record!) attended the YCA meeting. Our main topic was teen drug use. Speakers included Captain David Giroux (ACPD First District Commander), Captain Tom Trumble (ACPD Drug Enforcement), Corporal Andrew Nucelli (Yorktown Schoool Resource Officer), and Ms. Mila Vascones-Gatski (Yorktown’s Substance Abuse Coordinator).

An informative and eye-opening presentation was followed by a spirited Q&A. Captain Giroux asked the residents to help reduce teen drug use in Arlington. Residents should look out for drug paraphilia and suspicious activities. If you see something, say something.

The Lee Highway Alliance (LHA) held a Board Meeting in September at their new office space at 4620 Lee Highway (Suite 208).

The Arlington County Planning Department has interviewed candidates for County Planner who will lead the upcoming re-planning of the Lee corridor. The process will include a Community Forum (task force) with 40 members, and a working group of 8 participants, who will meet with staff and consultants to re-plan the corridor. The County has agreed that LHA, civic associations, and advisory groups will be represented on the task force. The process is likely to begin in early 2018.

The County is also in the early stages of planning the design of Fire Station #8. Many LHA board members feel that some space in the station should be made available for community
needs. I encouraged the Board to focus on core emergency management functions of the Fire Station.

I continue to engage with the business and property owners at Garden City Shopping Center to try to improve site conditions and better engage them. One idea being discussed is creating a Merchants’ Alliance. There are a number of issues common to both the businesses and the neighborhood, including trash removal, code enforcement, snow removal, and parking.

The YCA Executive Committee is deciding if we should incorporate the Yorktown Civic Association as a 503c4. Incorporating will reduce personal liability for Executive Committee members and add clarity to the annual elections, finances, and record keeping. We plan to engage in a transparent process as we move forward, and bring information to the December meeting. Please join us!

By Mike Cantwell

President, Yorktown Civic Association