Random Things

There seems to be some confusion about a shooting that took place near the Florida Avenue Park and a petition regarding the Bloomingdale Farmers Market . Not related to the shooting that took place during rush hour on North Capitol. I was at the market, and there was a petition going around regarding a show of appreciation to the neighbors for allowing the market to return for a 3rd year.
And joy-joy from the BACA blog of speed humps and a stop sign coming around 3rd Street and 4th.
Speaking of BACA, there is still time to a- buy a ticket from me for the Flower Power Walk, which raises funds for neighborhood beautification. Those rose bushes on 1st Street…. BACA, not the City, BACA. And b- nominate your neighbors’ BACA yards for Flower Power.

Ewwww Poor People

That’s the title I gave one letter I got sometime back from someone asking about the area and expressing concern about one of Shaw’s many affordable/ subsidized housing blocs. I’d like to think that I gently addressed the writer’s concerns and pointed out that the affordable housing was one of the things that maintained the diversity of the Shaw neighborhood that makes it vibrant and unique. I know I didn’t say that diversity is sometimes a pain in the a$$, though that’s true too.
I was reminded of that letter at a blogger breakfast hosted by Bread For The City yesterday. I, Mr. ReNewShaw, and a few others got a tour of the 7th Street office. Let me throw out a few things that I remember from the talk, about 1/2 of the 7th St B4tC’s clients come from the 20001 zip code, and grand majority come from NW DC. The offices are crowded, there isn’t much space for the privacy that is needed, their legal offices handle Social Security, Medicare/caid (can’t remember), landlord/tenant court issues, and they need more space for a waiting area that can handle families. They are so hurting for space that the room where we were to have the breakfast was taken over by other folks in the few minutes the room was left empty, causing our group to move to a smaller adjoining office.
In the discussion after the tour we talked about what relationships could be built between B4tC, bloggers and the greater community and gentrification. Shaw is diverse, with race, orientation, age, nationality, background, and income and that is the thing that makes it interesting. And yes, the diversity can be too interesting and annoying. But to be diverse and remain diverse, the organizations and options for all persons along the economic spectrum need to be there.

DC Dog Owners Hound Council to Reject Bag Tax

From the DC GOP with some minor editing (snipping) from me:

Washington, DC: Environmentally responsible dog owners in the District are urging the DC Council to reject the proposed tax on paper and plastic bags imposed under a bill introduced by Councilmember Tommy Wells as the “Anacostia River Cleanup and Protection Act of 2009.”

“We all want a clean city, and plastic bags are an essential tool for keeping it clean,” stated DC Republican Committee Chairman Robert J. Kabel. “But this bill is just a new tax that will punish pet owners who clean up after their pets, Bo Obama would not be happy with this piece of legislation.” Kabel owns a dachshund and, like most pet owners, carries plastic bags to clean up after him on their daily walks.

“This proposal will force us to purchase more costly plastic bags, rather than do what environmentalist have taught us to do: reduce and reuse!” says a petition signed, so far, by more than 100 residents and dog owners in the District.

Under Wells’ legislation, a five-cent tax would be imposed on all paper and plastic bags received at restaurants, grocery stores and retailers that sell food, such as CVS/pharmacy. Wells’ bill claims the revenue will clean the Anacostia River, after purchasing tens of thousands of reusable bags for low-income residents and conducting a consumer education campaign.

“Not only does this tax not make sense, but also it ignores the reality that 94 percent of Americans reuse their plastic shopping bags,” says Kabel. “If we tax shopping bags, what will be next? Tires, Starbucks coffee cups, ketchup packets and even old reusable bags are just some of the other things you can find in the Anacostia River and its surroundings.”

The DC Republican Committee offered testimony to Wells’ Committee hearing and offered a more comprehensive solution. The first part is to take part of the District’s budget, which has skyrocketed 42 percent since 2004, and fund the cleanup of the Anacostia River. The second is to promote recycling and work toward changing the human behavior problem of polluting.

“We should make efforts to change the hearts and minds of people so they pollute less,” concluded Kabel.

To sign the petition online, visit http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/dcdogssaynobagtax/.