April 26, 2016

Alcova Heights Citizens’ Association Meeting

April 26, 2016

President Kelly Holly greeted the attendees and thanked Arlington Baptist Church for hosting the meeting.

2016 AHCA Meeting Schedule

Meetings will be held on Tuesdays this year: April 26, June 21 (update – now June 28), September 20, November 15 (Board Elections)

Committee Reports

Treasurer’s Report

AHCA has $944.25 cash on hand. Our current budget exceeds that which we have on hand. Anyone who yet paid the annual dues of $10 is encouraged to do so. It is also possible to pay online, via PayPal through our website https://alcovaheights.com/civic-association/dues/

Current budget:

  • Park Clean Up – $35-40
  • Block Party – $650.00
  • Halloween Party – $350
  • Arlington Civic Federation Dues – $50
  • Proposed CPRO $40
  • 2016 budget – $1085-1090
  • Newsletter advertising may offset some costs.

Alcova Heights Events

  • Park Clean Up
    • Sat May 7th 8am-12 Noon
    • Need volunteers, meet at the sand volley ball court
  • Yard Sale
    • Have had a nice run of spontaneous group yard sales.
    • Were hoping to do this in April. No planned date, open to hearing one.
  • Block Party (update – thanks to Mary Anne for hosting a great party!)
    • Looking for volunteers to host the block party. Need a block and block party volunteers. We need someone to offer to coordinate this.
    • There is a comprehensive guide to planning and hosting the event based on experience.
  • Halloween Party
    • Usually the Saturday before Halloween 22nd or 29th.
    • Jessica Barker will tentatively host with a co-chair.
  • Carols

Traffic Committee

Mike Kigin gave the Traffic Committee report and took concerns from attendees.

Car Dealership

  • Recent shooting and prior vehicle incident.
  • Concerns about the traffic, irregular driving, parking in the neighbor, hours, etc.
  • Laura will write the letter.
    • Objective letter from the association (update – letter sent).

Infrastructure – Mini Park – Water Leak

  • Has been in existence for a long period of time. Has been reported.

Traffic Circles

  • Downed signs in traffic circles have been reported.
  • Traffic Circle Maintenance – informal network of volunteers.
    • Tom Schelstrade will be happy to provide mentorship.


  • A recent newsletter has not been produced. Looking at cost-effective and relevant ways to engage new residents, keep community informed about events and how to stay connected.
  • We’d like a Welcome to the Community Newsletter, updated yearly.
    • Will take money and time.
    • Kelly Holly requested content for the newsletter, Scot Hoffman will pull it together with Kelly.
    • There are some ideas for sponsorship.

Community Meeting and Event Signs

  • Existing signs have some damage, and all specify a Thursday meeting date. Current year meetings are slated for Tuesdays. A non-specific sign is proposed.
  • Marie VanNess volunteered to research the types and costs for contemporary signs.
  • Signs may be used for the major community events such as the Halloween and Block parties.
  • Some residents think that more signs in the neighborhood are needed and signs that allow us to promote specific events.

Civic Federation Report

  • Lois Koontz updated attendees about how CivFed works, the issues it addresses, and the level of participation AHCA can have.
  • AHCA has four delegates and four (non-voting alternates); one current vacancy and one serving member who would probably like to retire.
  • One meeting every month, first Tuesday. Have May and June meetings coming up.
  • So many openings for volunteers also at the County level. No chair for the Legislation Committee. In May CivFed will address the County Budget proposals.
  • org and read the resolution and the newsletter.
  • Civic Federation takes representatives from all Civic or Neighborhood Associations and other civic groups in the county.  Officially, each member organization may designate 4 delegates and 4 alternates and be represented with 4 votes at any one meeting.  However, every meeting is entirely open to the public and we welcome all-comers.  Our neighborhood has three delegates and no alternates at the moment, so we would love to see more folks get involved.
  • The Federation is a two-way street.  It is both a way to disseminate information of interest to County citizens as well as for those citizens to raise issues with and give feedback to the County.  The executive committee of the Federation tries to open channels by inviting legislators, County board members, School board members, candidates and the schools superintendent to speak with members throughout the year.
  • Delegates can become active through any of a dozen or more committees.  The committees monitor current issues in the county and at times bring forward programs, reports or resolutions to educate citizens and ‘speak’ to the County officials.  If you have a pet issue or area of interest, please step up and let the AHCA know.

Letter Policy

The association and board get many requests to write or sign-on to letters. If the subject matter is something we want to send on behalf of AHCA, we want a reasonable amount of paid members of the association to sign on. Alternatively, the board may elect to sign it. In some matters requiring expediency, the President alone may sign a letter.

Schools Update

  • Lander Allin gave a report on the two committees involved in development of a new elementary school at the TJ middle school site.
  • BLPC Building Level Planning Committee.
  • Other group is PFRC – outside, comprehensive plan, traffic, etc.
  • Have just kicked this off. Starting now, will be doing planning and design next 1.5 years. Construction next year. Sept ’19 school will open. This school will be a replacement for Patrick Elementary School. The Drew Montessori program will move into PH. That will add space at Drew.
  • Boundary change discussions have not yet begun.
  • There are also discussions beginning now about other prospective school modifications, additions and additional schools over the next 10 years or so.

Guest Speakers

Increased Home Daycare Capacity Request

Longtime Alcova Heights home daycare provider, Ana Vasquez, requested support or consent from the neighborhood to expand her home daycare from five to nine children. This reflects, in part, variation between whether her own children are or are not counted in the ratio by the State and County. She would need to implement the change by July 1st. Requests a letter 908 S Oakland St supporting her request to expand to serve 9 children. Ms. Vasquez is licensed by the County and State and will be subject to their regulation. AHCA membership in attendance voted in favor of supporting her request. AHCA will write a letter in favor of the request. (update – letter sent to the County)

Owner/Developer Request for As-Built Variance Support from Community

  • The architect and contractor for 3900 6th St S. addressed the meeting to request support in sustaining as-built a residence that, it has recently been determined, varies from code requirements. The owner, a developer, and his architect and contractor, went through Arlington County permit review process and Arlington approved plans for construction. The team has now completed construction and is approximately one week away from project delivery. On the “wall check” inspection of the property, an Arlington County inspector determined that one corner of the constructed porch falls 2 feet closer to the street than is permitted by code.
  • An attendee reviewed the plan and observed that the street is irregular in the spot where the porch corner falls an est. 17’4” set back as opposed to the required 19’5”. Modifying the porch design would effect the completion date, costs, and would result in an irregularly shaped porch.
  • The contractor and architect (homeowner absent) indicated that neighborhood support for maintaining the residence as-built would make the BZA review process easier.
  • Lander Allin motioned a letter of non-objection if both neighbors on both sides do not object to not-objecting to the house standing as is. The contractor and architect will work to provide evidence that both adjacent neighbors do not object to the house remaining as built before AHCA provides a letter of non-objection.

Arlington United Methodist Center Updates

  • Mark Cole and the Evans family met with AUMCenter. AUMCenter would like to come and talk with the neighborhood in June. Mark apprised the community about long-term plans for the property, which include cultivating a new congregation on that property. The liaison will come to AHCA in June.

Arlington Presbyterian Church Development

  • An attendee offered a question regarding the two residential parcels attached to the APAH project at APC. Libby Garvey said a proposal is required, if we can get it as part of Conservation and Parks Plan (which is being updated right now), then it is a much easier process. Parks planning is going on now. It is possible to go online to make suggestions and requests “More pocket parks in our neighborhood.”
  • AHCA needs a volunteer to come forward to take the lead on exploring “pocket park” and other favorable uses for these parcels.
  • An attendee suggested contacting Peter Neubauer.

There were approximately 20 residents in attendance for this meeting which was about 90 minutes in duration.