Letters to the Editor: May 13 – 19, 2010

Peppe Thanks Voters, Bemoans Low Turnout


I am writing to thank everyone who participated in the recent city election, and especially those folks who took the time to exercise their right to vote. I certainly wish more people had voted on something that directly affects each city resident, so that is one thing we need to work on.

I also want to thank everyone who helped with my own campaign (and especially my wife Beth, who has had to endure this every few years for a long time!)

Like the other candidates, I walked around the city, knocked on many doors, and listened to many people. I promise to keep listening. I also want to make sure that all that talk about “working together” is not just talk. I have spoken with each of the continuing and incoming council members, and I think we are all committed to that.

Those who know me know I am big on process, and I want to use those skills to help the council work together. From my discussions with the others, I think we agree on a lot more than we disagree on, and, if we work together, we can get through the rest.

Ron Peppe

Falls Church


Buschow Congratulates Council Winners


While I am deeply concerned about the low voter turnout at the May 4 elections, I wish to express my sincere appreciation and gratitude to all my fellow candidates for enduring the last couple of months.

Special congratulations to Ron, David, Ira and Johannah for running a clean and dignified campaign and surfacing as the people’s choice.

Our city has many challenges and I am confident that your abilities and hard work will keep us a thriving and sustainable community. I look forward to working with you and helping in any way I can.

Barry Buschow

Falls Church


‘Pay to Play’ Part of Wider Budget Challenges


The May 6 News-Press article “Stuart H.S. Coaches Blast ‘Pay to Play” Sports Fees” and George Waters’ letter “‘Pay to Play’ Widens Gap Between Races” bemoan newly imposed sports and academic fees without acknowledging pervasive government budget shortfalls. Since that’s the other half of the story, it’s especially surprising that the article’s author didn’t give the budget perspective to explain the need for fees.

Rather than being whimsically imposed or unfairly targeting schools, government fees and cuts (including staff reductions and terminations) are a widespread phenomenon. Parks, libraries, police, and fire services — among all government branches and services — in the region are being forced to do more with less. For example, county senior centers have imposed new activity fees. Volunteers and donations can only fill part of the gap.

When voters favor no-tax and government-is-the-problem candidates against those wanting to preserve services providing quality of life (education, safety, recreation, social services, etc.), how can it be surprising that schools must cut back or charge fees? Anger should be directed at people unwilling to pay the cost of services they demand, not at schools forced to take actions they don’t like any more than the article’s author or Mr. Waters.

Gabe Goldberg

Falls Church


No Surprise Another Business Leaving F.C.


The departure of the Original Pancake House is no surprise. In the last year, I spoke with owners of two other businesses that left Falls Church, because of high rents and taxes. They also moved right across the border into Fairfax County. Add Syms to that and who knows what other stores, and the picture is pretty bleak. The downtown remains boring, dead and not visitor-friendly. No signs for public parking and no signs literal and figurative to welcome outsiders. (Hey, what we need is another pizzeria! There are only what, about 10 of them now?)

It’s the usual lunacy of the Left; businesses are the devil, drive out your tax base, and then raise the taxes of your inhabitants. The wrong-headed approach of the Obama administration on a small scale. Glad I live in FairTax County.

Dimitri Gontscharow

Falls Church


New Post Office Not Friendly To Disabled


Earlier this month I needed to purchase a stamp so I used my wheelchair to go to the new Falls Church City Post Office. When I went to the entrance on Broad Street, I saw the steps but also noticed the small sign saying wheelchair entrance was in the back. My first thought was that they are making disabled customers go in the back entrance. I thought we were beyond that. I went to the back entrance and was completed flabbergasted. Not only the ramp was not built by the Architectural Barriers Act of 1968 standards (ABA) (without handrails) but the entrance did not have automatic doors. ABA has been in effect since 1968. I guess ABA is new to the Federal Government. Not.

I don’t think I expect a lot in life but I do expect contractors to follow laws. I would like some answers about the Post Office and its non-accessibility. Am I expecting too much? Why do disabled people need to fight for everything in their lives? I would like every contractor to ride in a wheelchair while they are building a building. Or better yet, I am very willing to roll through new buildings for the City and ensure they are in compliance with disability laws.

Lynn Rothman

Falls Church


Letters to the Editor may be submitted to letters@fcnp.com or via our online form here. Letters should be limited to 350 words and may be edited for content, clarity and length. To view the FCNP’s letter and submission policy, please click here.