CANDIDATE Q&A: Marybeth Connelly

MarybethConnelly_cropBy Falls Church Times Staff
October 21, 2013

The Falls Church Times recently invited each candidate running in the November 5 election for Falls Church City Council to respond to an eight-part questionnaire.  Today we publish the responses of Marybeth Connelly.  


Connelly is the Community Outreach Coordinator for Falls Church City Public Schools.  She serves on the boards of directors of the Village Preservation & Improvement Society,  Greater Falls Church Chamber of Commerce, and Falls Church Education Foundation.  She is the staff representative on the FCCPS Business in Education Partnership, and serves on the Falls Church Alliance for Youth, CATCH and the FCCPS Support Employee Advisory Committee.  She has lived with her family in Northern Virginia for 20 years, most of those years in Falls Church. Her three children are students in Falls Church City Public Schools.  Additional information about Connelly is available at her campaign website,


1. Qualifications. Why are you running for City Council?  What strengths and experience would you bring to the job?

I have been serving the City of Falls Church in many ways since moving here in 1995. My knowledge of the City’s strengths and needs comes from broad and deep connections within the community.

As the community outreach coordinator for Falls Church City Public Schools, I serve on the board of the Falls Church Chamber of Commerce, and have strong relationships with people in the business community. I’m also on the board of the Village Preservation & Improvement Society, and have gotten to know many committed citizens. As a parent of three FCCPS students, I am involved in PTA, PTSA and Athletic Boosters. The list goes on, but you get the idea.

For many years, I’ve collaborated with citizen volunteers, city employees and elected officials. I will bring long-term knowledge and strong connections to the Council.

2. City Finances. Financial pressures facing the City include rapidly growing schools, aging facilities, increased demand on city services, pension liabilities, and the need for an appropriate fund balance.  Although budgeting always requires “balance,” Council members must establish priorities.  What will be your priorities as you face these pressures?

We are growing at a faster rate than ever before in Falls Church, and growth affects everything. As our tax base increases, demand for City services grows. Our library is used to capacity and beyond, and many departments are understaffed. We are never sure how many students will enroll in school, and how world events will affect us.

With so much growth, it becomes difficult to budget because we aren’t on a predictable curve. It is as if we are on an exhilarating ride, and need to be bold, but cautious at the same time. We aren’t always certain how revenues will increase, and how many needs will arise. According to CFO Richard LaCondre’s recent report on the surplus, some sources of revenue increased more than others, and in unpredictable ways. That’s why teamwork between School Board and City Council is essential. The next Council and School Board need to look at the operating budget and CIP as one big pie, not as separate courses. I support the development of a Revenue Sharing Agreement that will designate a specific percentage of revenues to go to the schools, and I encourage current and future City Council and School Board members to get to work on this immediately. Not only will this take a big question mark out of budgeting, it will also temper the debate regarding the annual budget process.

I want a robust, and appropriate, fund balance. Several years ago we had to dip into the fund balance to stay afloat, and thanks to good stewardship and growth in revenues, we have regenerated that fund balance. Now it is time to decide how much to save and how much to spend or leverage for the benefit of citizens.

Regarding facilities, we need a universal look at many areas, also undertaken jointly by City Council and School Board. The Mary Riley Styles Library, City Hall, Mt. Daniel, George Mason, and our stormwater system all are in need of significant upgrades or rebuilds. We can’t keep looking at them in silos, as individual projects. We are a single city, and we need to see how they all fit together. Pension liabilities aren’t nearly as flashy as a new school or library, but they are a reality, and require careful attention in budgeting.

3. School facilities. Ideas have been floated by a number of people on how to pay for new facilities at George Mason High School and Mt. Daniel Elementary.  Some of those ideas include commercial development in the area near GMHS to bring in more revenue, tearing down City Hall to build a new GMHS there, and selling the Mt. Daniel property and moving those students to Thomas Jefferson Elementary.  Do you favor any of these proposals?   What would you propose as a way to deal with school facility needs?

Putting GMHS on City Hall site would not work. There isn’t enough space or road capacity for a high school there. Combining TJ & Mt. Daniel on a single site was one possibility among many in a draft facilities plan five years ago. It was an idea not pursued for good reason. The site is limited by the Tripps Run flood plain. Combining the schools would mean an elementary school housing more than 1100 students! This is not what we are about in Falls Church.

So much of our flexibility for future facilities depends on the Water Sale Referendum. I encourage everyone to vote “Yes” on the referendum. After the vote, Falls Church boundaries will expand by about 38 acres. Much of that land is the GMHS/MEHMS campus, and we will have the ability to use that part of the city as we determine to be the highest and best use. According to the terms of the mediation between Fairfax County and Falls Church City, 70% of the land will be reserved for educational use for the next 50 years. The remaining 30% of the land (about 10 acres) will be for Falls Church to use as we deem best.

For the first time Falls Church will have the opportunity to develop 10 acres of prime Metro-accessible land. We need to take every step to make sure that this land is developed to the highest tax potential for our citizens. There are many possibilities, and much to consider. I favor Class A Commercial space with a retail component that has worked in many jurisdictions, and we need to make sure it, or something similar, works for us.

Mt. Daniel is currently a moving target, and it is urgent that population growth at this school be addressed. Mt. Daniel is a jewel of a school, and we should do all we can to maintain it. According to the FCCPS web, 5 acres are necessary for a multi-level k-2 school. If there are 5 acres available in the city we should consider selling the Mt. Daniel land and building a new school. If it is not possible to acquire that much contiguous land in an appropriate space, we need to make sure that the current school site accommodates all the children who live in Falls Church.

4. Real Estate Development. Falls Church City is looking at a number of approved and prospective real estate developments in the coming years, such as the “Harris Teeter project” on West Broad, the “Reserve at Tinner Hill” on South Maple, a possible mixed-use project at Broad and West, and the potential development of land linked to the sale of the City water system.  In your view, what community values should new real estate developments reflect, and what specific features and characteristics should be included to make them enjoyable and valuable for the community?

Real estate development should contribute to the life of the whole community. It should add to the existing city that we all treasure. It should add walkability, interesting features, and bring in customers who do not live here. Sometimes it takes a while – but when it works, it is wonderful. For example, the Spectrum took several years to sell and lease, and it has brought amenities to the life of our city. It is a beautiful condominium building with underground parking. There are friendly restaurants and an acclaimed brew pub that brings in thousands of non-residents for weekend festivals, and provides a place for community to gather. The pocket park in the middle is not perfect, but it provides a great place to sit and be part of the neighborhood.

Cities and counties don’t embark on economic development because of love of overcrowding and massive buildings. Economic development is to enhance the existing City that we hold dear – so that we can afford to rebuild our high school and our library, so that we can provide services to citizens. And when those buildings are added they need to add value to the lives of existing citizens.

5. Economic Development.  Separate from real estate development, what can the City do to generate increased economic activity?  What kinds of businesses and activities should we recruit and promote? What tools should we utilize?

Falls Church has a thriving and active business community. New economic development should complement and expand our current commercial base. When I moved here in 1995 there weren’t many restaurants or retail businesses, and slowly it has grown to a more impressive mass. We need to recruit businesses that bring in people from all over Northern Virginia, not just residents. We need to find a will and a way to build Class A Commercial buildings. Those buildings will bring in employees and clients all day long, and will provide opportunities for smaller businesses to grow up nearby.

There are financial tools like arts district and technology districts that provide incentives for certain types of businesses to relocate here. We can also look at the Business/Professional/Occupational License (BPOL) to determine if there is a way to better align it with nearby jurisdictions.

6. Storm water.  The City Council recently passed a plan to enhance the city’s storm water infrastructure.  It features a new user fee that would be paid beginning next year by homeowners, businesses, and churches. Executing the plan would require a number of new full-time employees. Do you agree with this approach?  If not, how would you modify it?

As I understand it, the fee will be imposed to cover the watershed management plan required by state and federal regulations related to the Chesapeake Bay and to replace aging infrastructure within the city. These two aspects are predicted to cost the city upwards of $10 million in the next 10 years.

The new employees will be both administrative and maintenance workers. It seems that if that much money will be coming in, it needs to be properly administered and carefully used, so qualified employees will be necessary.

The city needs to be clear about how and when the funds will be spent. Some citizens think that the plan will fix their flooding basements and streets right away. Others think it will help us comply with Chesapeake Bay requirements.

There is an attempt to credit some of the fee, for landowners who have implemented stormwater mitigation on their properties, but from what I have heard the credits will be small. A committee comprising business, Church and community representatives have been meeting to advise the city on the structure of credits for the fee, which is based on the amount of impervious surface on each property.

I am looking forward to hearing more about the recommendations of the committee, and how it will be implemented.

7. “Ped” Plan.  In 2012, the City announced that the Council “withdrew consideration of the Pedestrian, Bicycle and Traffic Calming Strategic Implementation Plan to allow for changes to the plan and additional time for public input, review and approval.”  To date, the Council has not resumed consideration of the plan.  Do you feel the City should pursue such a plan?  If yes, what changes, if any, should be made to the 2012 version of the plan?  If not, why not?

At the CBC Transportation Forum last week Councilwoman Johannah Barry said that the Council will consider version two of the Ped Plan in November. She said that the plan maintains some parts of the original plan, and eliminates others. I think the City should pursue such a plan, and should make sure that the concerns of all citizens are incorporated into the plan. It will be interesting to see what is presented next month. Hopefully it will include simple things like moving telephone poles from sidewalks and adding crosswalks in dangerous areas, and it will eliminate the controversial parts like reducing parking on some streets and adding sidewalks in areas where it is not absolutely necessary.

8. Current Council. What has the current Council done well and what has it done poorly?

The current Council has been dealing with the same ambivalence towards growth that affects all Falls Church citizens. Growth is a good thing, when it is managed appropriately, and scary when it is out of control. Recent councils have approved many mixed-use buildings with a mixed record of predicting their impact on the City. We are far enough down this road that we need to look at our models and see if they are working or if the planning process needs to be tweaked so that we aren’t blinded by revenue projections, without taking into consideration the costs to the city like increased traffic and growing school enrollment.

Members of the current Council have governed from an abundance of caution (with good reason, since many of them had to make tough choices when funds were tight 4 years ago). Now we are in a position to look to the future with optimism and expect that our City will grow in the way we want it to. We should be able to fund all of our needs without raising taxes to exorbitant rates that have been predicted.

City Council and School Board need to work together to reduce the School vs. City mentality that sometimes overtakes our best intentions. As one who has good relationships with so many in town, I hope to build on what we have in common, and set us on a path of greater comity. The schools are part of the city, not in opposition to the city. The people who are served by the schools are also served by the police, library and community center. All pay taxes and want a great sustainable place to live for many years.

This is the first of five candidate questionnaire responses published by the Falls Church Times, and we would like to thank Mrs. Connelly for her participation.  We encourage all registered voters to go to the polls on Tuesday November 5.  Information on polling place hours and locations is available at  

October 21, 2013 


14 Responses to “CANDIDATE Q&A: Marybeth Connelly”

  1. TFC on October 21st, 2013 7:21 am

    Thank you for your answers. I am intrigued by your stand that we can fund all our needs without exorbitant tax rates. Could you please clarify the price point where tax rates go into the exorbitant category.
    Do you have a percentage range in mind for a revenue sharing plan with the schools?

  2. Gary LaPorta on October 21st, 2013 5:56 pm

    I salute you for taking on the challenge of elected office. I ask that, if elected, you fairly and equally represent ALL the citizens of The City of Falls Church.

  3. FC taxpayer on October 22nd, 2013 10:53 am

    Thanks for running for office and for participating in this helpful Q&A. My concern is that, in your previous position, you’ve essentially been an advocate for everything the public school wants. I support our schools, but recognize that the City is more than just a school system. I will support candidates that are able to objectively consider the school board’s wish list in light of competing priorities, budget constraints, and the burden on residential taxpayers.

  4. Marybeth Connelly on October 23rd, 2013 10:13 pm

    TFC – In our household, like yours, the tax bill has steadily increased as a result of increased assessments and higher tax rates. With more commercial development I am hopeful that the tax rate will stabilize and come more into line with neighboring jurisdictions. Regarding Revenue Sharing – Figuring out the perfect percentage will take extended conversation and collaboration between City Council and School Board. We need to look at jurisdictions that have done it successfully, and those where it hasn’t worked as well. No matter how the school portion of the budget is allotted, the entire city/schools budget needs to be transparent and understandable to all

    Gary – As one who has friends and supporters of all ages, and from all parts of the city, I intend to work with and represent all citizens. If there are groups that you feel are in need of more attention, I’m all ears!

    FC taxpayer – Like you I am a taxpayer and a citizen. I happen to be a school employee, but I’m not a policymaker or budget decision-make for the schools. The schools are an important part of Falls Church, part of a vibrant city. If we want to be a sustainable community we need to focus on all parts – commercial, arts, neighborhoods, government services, infrastructure, capital improvements and schools.

  5. Jim Bledsoe on October 24th, 2013 12:58 am

    My first impression on review of your background is that you will be unable to be balanced in your opinions regarding the schools and the needs of the city as a whole. The School Board as it sits today is comprised of individuals who are over the top in their zeal to get their fair share of the money. Will you challenge the School Board to present quantifiable justification for budgetary needs? The whole iPad debacle last year is a prime example of a School Board runamuck. Why should I vote for someone who I think is going to push to raise my taxes even more?

    You talk about development as the cure. The problem is when does this relief come? Is it four or five years down the rode? How does that reconcile with all the money the schools want to spend on ‘state of the art’ schools? What will my tax bill grow to before all this development occurs?

    The fact is Falls Church is about spending money. That burden has fallen to the taxpayer. The School Board has proven that they will find a way to spend any dollar made available. Their latest plan shows an objective to bring salaries in line with Fairfax and Arlington. Does this money come from the development you talked about? Maybe we should wait until all this development and associated tax revenue comes before we burden the taxpayer with all the stuff the schools want.

    The problem is that the strategic fix for taxpayers keeps getting pushed to the right while our taxes continue to go up. Maybe someone needs to tell me again how much they think my house is worth, while I pay 11K a year in property taxes.

    The fact is it’s a runaway train. Good luck to you.

  6. Linda Neighborgall on October 24th, 2013 3:49 pm

    Ms. Connolly, at the same time that I admire and thank you for your willingness to stand for office, your candidacy for the City Council raises a couple of substantial questions in my mind, not because there is any question about your good character, but because of the inescapable conflict of interest created by having an FCCPS employee serving on the Council and its potential effect on good government.

    As a Council Member you would be “sitting on both sides of the table” with regard to any matter concerning the schools. Your loyalties inescapably would be divided by that circumstance. Your personal and financial interest in your job and your necessary loyalty and fiduciary duty to your employer would be in direct conflict with your duty to the Falls Church community at large. This conflict inheres in the situation, whether your position is at the top or the bottom of the FCCPS hierarchy, professional or clerical. It exists as a fact.

    Moreover, as a participant in closed-to-the-public Council executive sessions, you would be privy to, and be able to influence sensitive issues bearing on FCCPS policies, priorities and financial demands that potentially are in conflict with other city-side needs. The lack of transparency regarding action taken in executive sessions would preclude any opportunity for our citizens to know how you exercise your authority within the framework of these divided loyalties.

    In political jurisdictions that impose a code of ethics on elected officials your employment at FCCPS concurrent with service on the Council likely would be considered a disabling conflict of interest and would require you to chose one of the two positions and resign the other. At a minimum, you would be required, quite impractically, to recuse yourself from all Council consideration of matters affecting FCCPS. As we have all-too-graphically been reminded lately, Virginia does not have an effective ethical code. However, the lack of one does not privilege elected officials to ignore their ethical and fiduciary duties to their constituents.

    Accordingly, my first question to you is to ask how you plan to resolve this conflict of interest if you are elected.

    My second group of related questions concerns your call for “revenue sharing” between city a schools. I’m unsure what to think about it without more information – I’m not alone among my friends and neighbors in this. So in the interest of clarity, please define and specifically describe what you envision in the way of revenue sharing. How would it work? What are the budgetary, fiscal and policy advantages and disadvantages of such a scheme, both for FCCPS and city-wide? What would be the impact of revenue sharing on the transparency of FCCPS’s operations and its accountability to the taxpayers? Would you invision the Council having greater oversight over FCCPS budgeting and operations in a revenue sharing environment? What protections for the taxpayers would you build into a revenue-sharing scheme during times of economic uncertainty or revenue shortfalls?

  7. TFC on October 24th, 2013 4:06 pm

    @Linda: you have crystallized my concerns as well. I’m just not sure a person employed by FCCPS could stay impartial.

  8. Gary LaPorta on October 25th, 2013 11:28 am

    Can a council person who lives in a specific development impartially and fairly hear arguments and vote for or against a development proposal that abuts their housing development? Our Mayor believes so. So why can’t you?

  9. Linda Neighborgall on October 25th, 2013 1:07 pm

    Gary, to carry your argument to its logical conclusion, can any FC citizen who owns a car impartially hear and vote impartially on issues bearing on cars? Or can a citizen with pollen allergies hear and vote impartially on any proposal to plant trees, shrubs and flowers on public property?

    These are all different from the issue I raise, a very serious one, of the inescapable conflict of interest, or divided loyalties if you prefer, that exists in the situation where a Council member is also an employee of the school system. Both positions impose a fiduciary duty and a duty of loyalty, and there is simply no way to meet both of those duties. It has nothing to do with one’s subjective intentions or integrity. The conflict inheres as an inescapable aspect of the situation.

    Recognition of this kind of disabling conflict of interest is deeply embedded in ethics codes for public employees and, for that matter, employees of many private entities as well. One cannot serve two masters.

  10. Andy Rankin (Falls Church) on October 25th, 2013 2:55 pm

    I think this is a fair issue to raise. I do wonder what, if any, fiduciary responsibility Ms. Connolly has related to her job. Is she in charge of budgets and spending in any capacity?

    That said, even if she doesn’t have any fiduciary responsibility with her job she would certainly have influence over the school budget amount as a member of City Council if she is elected.

    Does anyone know if a situation like this has occurred in the past? Have we ever had School Board or City Council members who have also been employed by the schools or City? If so, how were the ethical issues treated at that time?

    I’m surprised that Virginia and/or the City doesn’t have any regulations in this area. I know as a member of the Planning Commision I have to provide the City with financial information that could bring to light any conflicts. I also know that I’m not allowed to serve on other boards and commissions. For some reason, we’ve never found it necessary to put limits like that on elected officials (apparently).

  11. Marybeth Connelly on October 26th, 2013 2:23 pm

    Linda, TFC & Andy,
    You’ve gotten to the heart of a big question, that I’ve seriously considered. I appreciate that you’ve put time and thought into it, too. Many citizens have asked and I’ve answered it in several forums. I wrote a post about it on my web page that answers some of your questions. Rather than reprint it here, follow this link:

    I’m going to post a separate answer to Linda’s question on Revenue Sharing, because that deserves its own space.

    Linda’s phrase “sitting on both sides of the table” is an interesting one that reflects an adversarial vision of what should happen between City Council and School Board. If they are opposing teams, the metaphor works. In my vision of city government that metaphor doesn’t adequately describe the depth and breadth of the relationship between city and schools. We are on the same team, serving the same constituents.

    Sitting on both sides of the table is an apt description of someone who is employed by an asphalt company and is also on City Council, legislating the approval of a paving project. That would indeed be a conflict of interest.

    For my situation as a school employee and a candidate for City Council, a better metaphor is a Venn Diagram that shows the common interests of citizens. We are all part of one one city, with one population that uses and pays for many services, including library, police, schools, sewer, senior center, recreation and parks, stormwater management, etc.

    And we should expect from our elected officials, no matter who they are, that they work together for the good of the whole city, even if they happen to disagree. Just because we live close to Washington DC, we do not need to allow our political discourse and decision making to become rancorous and divided.

    Like Councilman Tarter, who read a statement acknowledging his wife’s employment with FCCPS, during last year’s budget discussions, I will recuse myself from votes that affect fewer than three individuals, if I am one of those individuals, and I will carefully weigh and seek counsel regarding situations that cause ethics concerns.

  12. Marybeth Connelly on October 26th, 2013 2:25 pm

    Regarding Revenue Sharing:
    Before I was a school employee, I began following the budget process as a parent, a volunteer. I have sat through day-long meetings as one of very few citizen-observers, watching the School Board question principals, superintendents and administrators in a very public vetting of the Superintendent’s proposed budget. That process is transparent, and the budgets go through many iterations as the School Board comes to its vote on what to send forward to the City Council. They don’t always agree, and that is a good thing because it makes the consideration more meaningful. Most years very few people pay attention to this part, but all should because they will see a School Board that is carefully considering and weighing requests; changing some, and agreeing with others. Most people start to pay attention during phase two, when the School Board’s budget is included in the City Manager’s budget.

    The concept of Revenue Sharing goes back to the Venn Diagram vision of the City. We are all sharing the same pie, and if we can decide what percentage of the city’s revenue goes to various parts of the city, we will be able to avoid an annual fight over the budget that has become unnecessarily unpleasant in recent years. The process of vetting the School Board Budget and the City Manager’s Budget would remain in place, but all will know upfront what percentage of revenues would go to each area. This doesn’t preclude conversation and debate about HOW the money collected by the City is used to the benefit of all citizens. It just provides a better sense of HOW MUCH is available at the start of the process. Revenue Sharing model is a way to do that. This has worked for Arlington and other jurisdictions, and we should study it and decide if this is the way to go in Falls Church.

    There may be other ways to do that, and Revenue Sharing may not be the perfect model. People have pointed out problems with this model to me. What happens in lean years? What is the appropriate percentage to go to the schools? Does it also designate how much goes to other departments like HHS or Rec & Parks? How many years does a Revenue Sharing agreement cover? Is it adjustable over time? All good questions, that should be part of the conversation that includes City Council, School Board, citizens and employees.

  13. Linda Neighborgall on October 26th, 2013 8:48 pm

    Marybeth, thanks for taking time to address my questions. I had already seen your website when I wrote them, but it didn’t adequately address the issues I have raised.

    Conflicts of interest, divided loyalties, occur in situations like you propose to occupy. You would be receiving a salary from an entity that pays you and expects you to serve its interests in return; and if you are elected there will be times when you will be faced with ignoring that expectation of loyalty in favor of a competing entity or interest. You will be facing ultimately incompatible demands for loyalty to both. As I said, this is simply a fact, inescapably. Your devotion to the school system, which is otherwise admirable, is a built-in claim to your appreciation and loyalty that we have seen in the recent past battle over the city budget. Your good character and intentions don’t neutralize any of this, although I believe that you are possessed of both.

    For these reason, I don’t find the Venn diagram analogy convincing or even applicable. While in one sense we are, indeed, all in this together as citizens of the city, we do not all value FCCPS above or even equal to other governmental functions. We can all agree that we want our kids get an excellent education yet remain miles apart when it gets down to the dollars and cents of schools versus the rest of city needs and priorities, particularly when financial resources are limited. For a recent example, there was the question of who should be responsibile for providing IT devices to students, the taxpayers at large or the student’s parents. In 2 or three years, when the argument is made that we must replace all those now-outdated IT devices with state-of-the-art equipment, will you be able to say no to FCCPS?

    With all due respect, I am also not convinced that the lack of any effective ethics guidelines or regs in Virginia is a good thing in itself, or a good rationale for entering into a conflict situation. And I’m not sure of the logic behind a 3-person demarcation for when you will or will not participate in school-related matters. If there is a direct conflict of interest, then it doesn’t matter how far it extends numerically – it’s still a conflict.

    Finally, as to revenue sharing, I am more and more convinced it is a terrible idea and one that further disadvantages the taxpayers, as well as the Council in its ability to allocate resources based on actual circumstances extant in each budget cycle and be assured that budget requests are justified. Avoidance of conflict is the weakest reason I can think of to make such a change. It is through conflict, in the positive although sometimes hard fought and unpleasant sense of the concept, that issues and requests get fully examined and hashed out. That is the nature of the legislative process, and I think it is healthy.

    I might feel differently if the FCCPS budgetary, administrative, contracting, facilities and planning functions (all functions except the education function) were better integrated with general government, and if the Council would exercise careful oversight over these non-education functions of FCCPS. But I don’t see anyone in authority proposing to do that.

    Thanks for your serious consideration of my questions. I think we have just agreed to disagree regarding both the ethics and the revenue sharing issues. I do wish you well, though, and again express my appreciation for your willingness to put yourself out there.

  14. FC taxpayer on October 29th, 2013 12:20 pm

    As Community Outreach Coordinator, your job is to advocate for the schools. Sadly, in Falls Church (and most other communities), this typically means advocating for more dollars. Your op-eds in local newspapers, written in your official capacity, are evidence of your role within the school district.

    Although I appreciate your government service, I really don’t see how you can serve impartially on both the City Council and in your full-time position. For example, let’s say the iPad issue comes up again. The School Board wants to buy iPads using surplus property tax dollars. As outreach coordinator, you pen an op-ed in the FCNP advocating that same position. After all, it’s your job. Are you then going to objectively consider, as a Councilmember, rejecting that same proposal? I just don’t see how you can serve in both positions effectively.

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