Candidate Q&A to Begin Monday

By Falls Church Times Staff
October 19, 2013

Beginning Monday, the Falls Church Times will publish the questionnaire responses of candidates running for Falls Church City Council in the November 5 election.  The order of publication, determined by random selection, will be:

Monday, October 21 – Marybeth Connelly

Tuesday, October 22 – David Snyder

Wednesday, October 23 – Karen Oliver

Thursday, October 24 – Dan Sze

Friday, October 25 – Robert LaJeunesse.

The questionnaire appears below.


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

2. City Finances. Financial pressures facing the City include rapidly growing schools, aging facilities, increased demand on city services, pensions 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?

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?

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?

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?

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?

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?

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

October 19, 2013 


One Response to “Candidate Q&A to Begin Monday”

  1. TFC on October 20th, 2013 4:37 pm

    Can’t wait. You have really formulated some good questions….hope the candidates do more than say “we need balance”. I hope there are specifics.

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