This page is a brief update on yard signs, and postcard notices to alert you to public meetings about MAC zoning and Maple Avenue development.
- The yard signs are all gone, and I’m not ordering more at this time.
- The postcard notices are being discontinued because they won’t work, given the very short notice the Town gives regarding public hearings.
If you would like to receive email notification from savemaple.org, to alert you to upcoming Town public meetings on Maple Avenue and MAC development, please sign up at the bottom of this page. If you signed up for my postcard notices, and provided an email, you need not sign up again.
I am out of yard signs and do not plan to order more. A half-a-dozen or so requests came in after I ran out the last time. I apologize to those who made those last few requests, but there’s not enough demand to warrant doing a fourth printing.
When you are done with your sign and no longer want it, you are welcome to stick it at the end of my driveway, and I’ll deal with it from there (226 Glen Ave SW). I hope that most signs will stay up at least until the May 7, 2019 Town Council elections.
As noted above, the postcard-based system is obsolete, given the large number of Town sessions to be held about MAC proposals, and the very short notice that the Town gives regarding those sessions.
The problem is not the lack of a schedule. The Town appears to have these meetings planned well in advance. For example, a February work session on the two current MAC proposals was casually mentioned at January 7 2018 Town Council meeting.
The main problem is that the Town does not make the schedule public. So citizens have no idea what’s going to be discussed until the Town posts the agenda for the relevant meeting. Town insiders get weeks to months of advance notice; mere citizens get hours to days of advance notice. The Town knows what it plans to do when, it just doesn’t bother to tell us.
This is compounded by the lack of video for most meetings. For Town Council and Planning Council meetings, the Town a) broadcasts and streams the meeting live, and b) eventually provides the recorded video via the Town website. (The TV channels and streaming link are given a few paragraphs down on this page.) For those meetings, perhaps the short notice isn’t so bad — you can watch it on Verizon, Cox, or via internet, from home.
But for other meetings where MAC projects may be pushed forward, there is no video. For those meetings, the only way to know what went on, in a timely fashion, is to attend in person or read the notes of someone who attended. These include Board of Architectural Review (all meetings), Planning Commission (work sessions), Town Council (work sessions), not to mention other potentially relevant Town board meetings (e.g., Transportation Safety).
Typically, minutes are eventually posted, but those can be a very brief summary of events, and those are often not timely. Here’s a snapshot of the status of minutes from November and December 2018 meetings, as of 1/16/2019. The gist of it is that six weeks to two months can easily pass between the time of a relevant public meeting and the Town’s publication of the minutes of that meeting.
For example, the Town Council held a work session 12/3/2018 regarding a couple of proposals aimed at increasing the speed of development along Maple and throughout Vienna. Minutes for that meeting still were not posted as of 1/16/2019.
For the time being, we typically get advance notice that ranges from less than 24 hours (as occurred for a recent Board of Architectural Review (BAR) work session) to perhaps three working days (for a typical Town Council meeting). And that’s only if we are scanning the Town of Vienna website before each planned BAR, Planning Commission, or Town Council work session or public session.
I have asked the Town to publish some sort of schedule so that citizens can plan ahead, but it is too soon to expect any sort of answer back on that.
If you would like to sign up to receive email alerts from savemaple.org, please sign up below.
Any time that I am aware of a Town public meeting where MAC development or Town of Vienna development will be discussed, I’ll send out a brief email notice to those on the list.