Date: September 18, 2012 7:11:37 AM EDT
To: ``<firstname.lastname@example.org>`` email@example.com>, ``Clark, Timothy (Council)`` <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: McMillan and The Bloomingdale Flooding Issue
For the past two months, I have directed most of my anger and frustration towards DC Water with regards to the flooding and sewer backup in Bloomingdale. I`ve personally spoken to Tim Clark on several occasions and discussed with him the issues that you guys are facing on the legislative side and the issues that I and others are facing as customers/ victims of DC Water. But I must say, your actions last night supporting the development of McMillan at this time are inexcusable. A large section of your Ward continues to flood due to an overloaded and inadequate Northeast Boundary Trunk sewer line, and your solution, to build more development on this sewer line! I understand that there are larger implications for the Ward, with the building of this project, but how do you explain your rationale at this time to those of us who continue to be ``sitting ducks`` during every rain event? Its easy for you living up in Stronghold and Tim living over in Eckington to say not to worry, but like all of my neighbors, I worry every time there is a strong rain forecast. I worry about if my condo will get flooded, I worry if my car will get flooded as the streets in my neighborhood fill with water and sewage, I worry about the toll all of this is taking on my community. Last night, after Tim and I engaged in a battle of words via Twitter about your support of the development up the hill, I received emails from a number of neighbors on the subject. I`m not an elected official in DC, I`m not an ANC representative, I`m just a citizen fighting to make sure his voice is heard by his elected representatives. Your decision last night, showed me that my voice and the voices of my neighbors are not been heard and that you don`t get the flooding and sewer backup issue as much as you claim to.
While I might support the development of McMillan at some point in the future, I think your support of any development at this time, given the unresolved flooding/ sewer backup issue, is premature at best. When I talked to Tim last Friday, he said your office was working to find money for a relief fund. Rather than giving the developers at McMillan a gift of $49 million (or whatever the current figure is) Why doesn`t the District reallocate that money to a relief fund and to an investment in its aging and failing infrastructure. As I said last night at the BCA meeting, that you did not attend, we know and have known that the flooding problems in the neighborhood are largely in part to inferior infrastructure. The small combined sewer lines in the neighborhood have been listed as a cause of the flooding in DC WASA reports, most recently as 2006. The problem DC WASA and the District Government never saw fit to make an investment to fix them. Instead, former Councilman Thomas and others decided to invest in the development of McMillan. I ask you, which makes more sense, upgrading your infrastructure so it can handle a development like McMillan or adding a development like McMillan to an overloaded infrastructure?
As I said to Tim last night, I`d like to see you more outspoken on the Flooding and Sewer Backups impacting this neighborhood. Your silence in my eyes makes you complicit in the problem. I think your office could be doing so much more than it has. As much as I hated your predecessor, Harry Thomas would not have missed out on the opportunity to represent his constituents and seek justice for them. I feel like for the last two months you guys have missed opportunity after opportunity to help your constituents. For the record, the damage to my condo was about $10,000 and the costs incurred by my condo association for a backflow preventer and insurance deductibles another $4,000. That is not money that most people or condo associations have just laying around. I wish you guys would have gotten ahead of this issue sooner, called the Council back for an emergency legislative session. But don`t worry, as nothing really has been accomplished on the flooding front in the past two months, you might get your opportunity to shine this afternoon should the Bloomingdale neighborhood flood again.
I look forward to hearing from you and Tim on this issue.
Frustrated Bloomingdale Resident