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Community and History

ANC 2C Meeting Reminder, 05/02/07, and Dysfunction Update
By Alex Padro
May 2, 2007, 13:23

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Advisory Neighborhood Commission 2C is scheduled to hold its next monthly public meeting on Wednesday, May 2, 2007, at 6:30 PM at Africare, 440 R Street, NW. The meeting is open to the public, and all are welcome to attend.

I say the meeting is scheduled to take place because Commission Chair Doris Brooks has canceled the last two meetings because she refused to allow videotaping to take place. The Commission has no rules regarding audio or videotaping, and permission had been granted by the venues for videotaping to take place. The March meeting was canceled the day before it was scheduled to take place, and the April meeting was canceled by Brooks when neighborhood residents refused to stop videotaping the proceedings, despite the fact that the public and parties that had business before the Commission were already assembled. Brooks canceled both meetings without the concurrence of the other members of the Commission, in violation of the Commission's bylaws. As a result of the Commission not having met for two full months, a number of applicants for stipulated liquor licenses, street closures for downtown events, etc., had to scramble to find alternate means of meeting ANC approval requirements. Ward 2 Councilmember Jack Evans' office had to intercede on at least one matter.

Indeed, the volume of complaints about ANC 2C's dysfunction rose to such a level that Councilmember Evans called a meeting with all four ANC 2C Commissioners and Office of Advisory Neighborhood Commissions Director Gottlieb Simon on April 30, 2007. At that meeting, Commissioner Curtis agreed to resign her position as the Commission's secretary, and all four commissioners agreed to elect Commissioner Chappel as the new secretary, with Chappel pledging to prepare and distribute the minutes of previous meetings in advance of the Commission's monthly meetings. Commissioner Brooks agreed to have the minutes of the February 2007 meeting, which she stated were ready, picked up by Councilmember Evans' staff for copying and distribution to each commissioner on May 1, 2007.

Instead, on the afternoon of May 1, 2007, Brooks called Evans' office to advise that the minutes were not ready, and that she was not going to hold the election to elect Chappel as secretary because there was too much business on the agenda. The matter could be dispensed with in two minutes, but Brooks refuses to do so after previously agreeing to do it, nullifying the pledges that all the Commissioners made at the meeting with Evans to put aside past disagreements and try to work together for the community's best interests.

The truth is more likely that once Brooks told her confidant and former Commission Chair Leroy Thorpe about the agreements made at the meeting that Evans brokered, she was instructed not to follow through on her commitments. I am sometimes asked by constituents why working with Brooks is not possible. The answer is because she regularly makes 180 degree turns on issues from one day to another. Combined with Thorpe's manipulation of both Brooks and Curtis, Brooks' unwillingness to keep her word and her combative attitude, dealing with her in good faith is simply impossible.

All that having been said, the May 2, 2007 Commission meeting will be held at a facility where permission has been granted by the owners for videotaping of the meeting, so anyone who has video recorders or still cameras are encouraged to bring them and use them. The items on the agenda, which was distributed on April 5, 2007 and likely does not include other items of business that have arisen since them, includes the following:

1) Army 10 Miler Footrace, 10/07/07 Street Closings
2) Cassidy Pinkard Colliers Race for Hope 5K, 05/06/07 Street Closings (event benefits Brain Tumor Society)
3) Juvenile Diabetes Event, 05/06/07 Street Closures
4) Shaw Main Streets Boulevard Banners on Lampposts in ANC 2C Area
5) Unspecified matters related to an unidentified property on the 400 Block of M Street, NW

Other matters of old and new business may be taken up the Commission without any public notice.

If you are interested in the disposition of any of the matters on the agenda, please let me know.


Alexander M. Padro
Commissioner, ANC 2C01
1519 8th Street, NW
Washington, DC 20001-3205
202-518-3794 * Email:

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