Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Council Member Cheh May newsletter

Since Spring has arrived, it is a good time to start a newsletter with a word about how I think we at the Council can best further the environmental agenda of the District. As the nation's capital, I believe we must lead by example and set the highest possible standard for environmental quality in a metropolitan area.

One of the critical components of my environmental agenda is energy use. Over the past four months, I have been working with members of the community and experts from around the region to develop a vision for the future of energy use in the District. Work has already begun; last year's Green Building Act was a huge step in the right direction, creating a standard for environmentally sound building design in the District. This month I will chair a hearing on 'Government Funded Energy Efficiency in the District.' I hope to explore ideas and best practices from around the nation, where utilities, businesses, residents, and city agencies join together to develop a coherent citywide energy agenda. The hearing will be held Thursday, May 17th and I welcome your thoughts, ideas, and testimony. Should you wish to participate, please contact Patrick Leibach of my staff at 724-4902 or pleibach@dccouncil.us.

On another front, last month the Emergency Medical Task Force held its first meeting. This task force was convened by the Mayor in response to the tragic loss of journalist David Rosenbaum. Led by the new FEMS Director, Dennis Rubin, the task force will meet over the next six months to examine the system-wide delivery of emergency medical services throughout the city. As a member of this task force, I hope to develop a comprehensive set of practical recommendations, including review of the areas of operations, training and management, with a special focus on improving the culture of the agency to provide the highest quality of professional and compassionate pre-hospital medical care to all DC residents and visitors. At our next meeting, May 24th, we will hear testimony from the public. For those wishing to share their thoughts or concerns, you can contact Lance Holt at (202) 727-6053 or lance.holt@dc.gov. I will continue to share updates and insights from the meetings that follow in hopes of creating an open and inclusive process. Please feel free to email me directly with any suggestions.

Finally, I am excited to announce the opening of my Ward 3 Constituent Services Offic on the UDC campus, located on Connecticut Avenue, right behind the Van Ness Metro stop, building 38, Room C01-A. I hosted an Open House on Saturday, May 5th and was pleased to see so many of you join me in unveiling this new satellite location. I hope the new office will allow me to stay more connected with the community and any ideas or concerns you may have. For those of you interested in volunteering, please let us know by calling Dee Smith of my office at 202 724-8062. I hope to begin with regular office hours on Mondays from 10a.m. - 12 p.m. and Thursdays from 3 p.m. - 5 p.m. If there are any changes in the future, we will post the revised hours on the web site.

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