Saturday, March 5, 2016

McMillan Park, 3/2/16 Testimony by Daniel Wolkoff, and How Our Water System Functions

A number of hearings on McMillan Park have been held.  Many people come out in support of a park for all people, but the big developers keep on demanding to maintain their NO-BID status.  They must not be allowed to win.  Here is a particularly strong piece of testimony.  At the bottom is a very good link describing how DC's water system operates.

Agency Performance Oversight Hearings Fiscal Year 2015-2016,
Committee of The Whole
Testimony of Daniel Goldon Wolkoff
March 2, 2016
MCMILLAN PARK-The biggest land theft since Manhattan!
With some edits added since testimony was submitted.
Our Declaration of Independence states:
“government’s derive their just powers from the consent of the governed”
Please Council members, contact me to explain how you developed consent from the people of DC, for the “surplus” of McMillan Park to Vision McMillan Partners and their alliance with DMPED (Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development). Tell me about the forums you held, the polls you took, the community meetings, Ballots cast, and all the analysis you did of the various options you presented your constituents. Tell me how your Committee hearings are not a charade, blocking public input in reality! I see the empty seats on the dais, and have seen our 15 copies of testimony thrown in the recycling bin before the Committee of the Whole has completed its hearings. I expect each Council-member to read my testimony, contact me and explain how they gained consent of the people on this land transfer, explain to me and all of the District, how they are executing their responsibility to provide oversight of this massive multi-billion dollar development project.
The United States Constitution First Amendment guarantees OUR right to “petition the government for redress of grievances” Please Council-members explain to me how the DMPED/VMP hiring, in Dec 2013, of a Baltimore Public Relations firm, Fontaine Company, who’s stated goal is to “neutralize opposition” to VMP's oversized development of McMillan, is not a violation of the citizens constitutional first amendment rights? What does “provide continual cover to elected officials”, actually mean? Why did these consultants, VMP, hire Carmen Group with our money to lobby our own officials, spending $100,000 just for one appointment with David Grosso, tell us please, how is that ethical? And why are we the taxpayers being forced to foot this bill?
Is this the way the business of the people of The District of Columbia is to be conducted?
Please explain how DMPED project Manager Shiv Newaldous and Deputy Mayor E. Jeffrey Miller can commit perjury in sworn testimony to Chair Bowser on Feb. 11, 2014. They lied to the Chair that DMPED did not pay for the Fontaine agency, despite his signature on the invoice from Dec. 2013. So please explain to me, are Mayor Bowser and current Chairman Phil Mendelson guilty as well, as they cover this up, are all you city officials guilty of “obstruction of justice”? Chairman Mendelson said it was “kind of a PR nightmare”, well yes, it’s ACTUALLY a criminal violation of the peoples first amendment rights!
Shoving VisionMcMillan Partners (VMP) and all their lies and manipulations down the people’s throats is the “nightmare!” Then Mendelson, himself, proceeded to lie about McMillan Advisory Group support for VMP, at the “surplus” 5 year extension.  Thus committing Bowser’s successor to the same crimes you are guilty of, and to this grotesque project.  By 2022 she will likely be working directly for the developers, whereas now she just does their bidding against the “public interest”. The “revolving“ door with Trammel Crow, DMPED Jeff Miller's former employer and a parade of DC officials going in and out of Holland and Knight would be illegal at the Federal Govt. and you act proud? It is disgusting, The District of Corruption!
The Mayor and City Council have dictated to the City, and the People, that OUR public land be given away in “massive corporate welfare FRAUD.”  There is no attempt to gain consent; and Fontaine is impersonating the community, “neutralizing opposition”, with the stated “goal” to “shift community dialogue and general perception to that of majority support for VMP plans”.
Council-members please explain to me how this is not deserving of a class action suit in Federal Court for $100’s of millions, to bloody the nose of our “out of control”, and dictatorial government as it continually sells out public interest and “The Commons” to corporate interests for private profit at the People’s expense!
Democracy doesn’t end the day after an election, and Mayor Gray was not elected, rather installed by campaign and electoral fraud, bribery, at least 3/4 million dollars in illegal contributions and obstruction of justice. Our Federal Prosecutor, Ron Machen, said DC corruption in your Council offices, and the Mayor's, “tests our resolve”. Imagine the scope of the “cover-up”, if he had no “resolve”.
Mayors have lied about 75 years of expressed, voted on, and testified to, public need for McMillan Park in false declarations. It was said “there is “no public need” for the “surplus and disposition” declaration on McMillan which also calls for “increased competition.” It is this City Council’s blatant acts of criminality, collusion, and rubber stamping of subordinate agencies here at DMPED, OP (Office of Planning), HPRB (Historic Preservation Review Board), and the DC Zoning Commission that justifies criminal charges and prosecution.
Council members, I recommend you get on the right side of the law on McMillan because you’re running on arrogance, and abuse of power, little else, not legality, this shear delusion isn’t going to sustain you forever. Thank God for Elissa Silverman the only Council member who voted in favor of the people, and Auditor Kathy Patterson who are honest, and in the rare honest vote, tried to deny Mayor Bowser 7 years to pull off this “No Bid”, “Exclusive Rights”, “Abuse of Power”, and massive “land Theft.”
                   Pope Francis
"We have created new idols.
The worship of the ancient Golden Calf has returned in a new ruthless guise in the idolatry of money and the dictatorship of an impersonal economy lacking a truly human purpose"

Successive administrations, and the DC City Council, have colluded with private development conglomerate Vision McMillan Partners ( ), to transfer massive public wealth and publicly owned 25 acre McMillan Park, the last large open green space in the city, to private corporate profit.
Over $300 million in subsidies, no legitimate developer would need in this hyper real estate market, including the government paying all the pre-development and land preparation costs, and almost $11 million in consulting and legal fees, are all highly unusual.
The issue is the theft from the people of District of Columbia, and the Nation, of a significant work of landscape architecture and industrial design, by its own Mayor and City Council and subordinate agencies who have failed to protect the people of Washington and violated the law.
These officials have committed theft, of the historic protected work of turn-of-the-century master designers, brought to Washington by Senator McMillan, an important historic site, a critical public amenity, and a potentially lifesaving backup system for clean water. Our clean water system is currently being threatened by ground water movement of contamination from WW1 chemical warfare American University laboratory waste dumps in Spring Valley, adjacent to the Dalecarlia Reservoir.
The McMillan Sand Filtration Site, a registered National and DC Historic District, on “Emergency Evacuation Route”, North Capitol, is DC’s Central Park. Parks are development for the people.
We can become founders and create a conservancy, when the “Monstrosity on Michigan Avenue”, a mammoth National Harbor office and condo park, is defeated. If VMP/Gray/Bowser’s McMillan Town Center is such a great idea, let’s get a section of Rock Creek Park ceded to DC and build it there. Or at Washington Hospital Center, where extensive parking lots cause horrible storm water runoff and sewage flooding in Bloomingdale. We can put VMP engineering experience to solving that, rather than constructing 50 buildings, massive medical office towers, 700 condos and 3000 parking spaces, right on top of this preexisting failure.
Enjoyed from 1907 to 1941 as DC’s only racially integrated park, we still have African-American seniors who remember the community activities and sleeping out on the breezy embankments and reservoir on steaming DC summer nights.
Does the civil rights and social justice history explain the Army Corp of Engineer's fencing off the site in 1941 for fear of Axis sabotage, but never reopening it at the end of WW11? Why was the predominantly African-American community denied its healthy outdoor green space when privileged upper NW was lavished 5 times the parks, Rock Creek’s stream valleys, wooded hiking trails, Civil War fortifications, and other natural and beneficial space. Can anyone imagine a 25 acre green space in Georgetown or Chevy Chase fenced off with barbed wire, excluding the public, for 75 years! The “just” answer to obvious racial and economic class discrimination is opening McMillan Park.
We need a fascinating large outdoor “great space” in the center of the city, not massive corporate welfare abuse, and 20,000 more cars on area streets where the air already stinks with the highest air pollution measured in DC; and, where ambulances and fire trucks are regularly blocked by traffic congestion, NOW!
Adaptive re-use, the repurposing of historic sites, so successful around the world, would preserve the 20 acres of “underground filtration cells”, 12 foot high acre sized masonry galleries perfect for numerous community and commercial activity, including sustainable urban “indoor” agriculture. Five times more productive than surface farms, no pesticides, little water use, providing millions of pounds of fresh ripe, vegetables and farmed fish. The “farm to table” movement for our restaurants, an end to “food desserts”, with community owned urban farms, a “nutrition/exercise hub” to improve the health of our residents and visitors to this tourist destination. We can train our youth and under-employed in masonry, carpentry, urban agriculture, and technology careers restoring the site and running the farms. Quality oriented restaurants with wine cellars located right there could use the nutritious and organic foods produced on site.
Please see this fascinating video on “vertical indoor agriculture”:
Vision McMillan’s massive development, with millions of tons of pollution and carbon emitting concrete structures, requires demolition of the 20 acres of underground masonry galleries, and decades of construction on the site.
Saving the underground for adaptive reuse, will preserve the entire 25 acre surface park for generations to enjoy, including community gardens, DC Wolf Trap and Glen Echo type entertainment events, and other creative uses, not corporate profit.
We reject as illegal the “collusive partnership” between “our representatives” and connected corporate developers, given a no bid “exclusive rights agreement”, rubber stamped by subordinate DC “regulatory” agencies, working for the interests of the developer and against the community.
The Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development, Jeffrey Miller, himself a former VP of the lead developer, Trammel Crow, has hired an “Astroturf” PR firm from Baltimore, Jamie Fontaine, to violate the people's “First Amendment” rights to “petition their government for redress of grievances”.
Long time activist for McMillan Park, landscape architect Mary Pat Rowan reveals the PR firm's “Astroturf” campaign in this City Council Committee Oversight hearing with Muriel Bowser, and Historic Restoration artist
Daniel Goldon Wolkoff, explains adaptive re-use of restored McMillan Park.

The Mayor and City Council have dictated to the City, with no attempt to gain consent, and Fontaine is impersonating the community, “neutralizing opposition”, with the stated “goal” of “shift community dialogue and general perception to that of majority support for VMP plans”. They have a “talking point”, harped on by Bowser “the site was never a park”. Finally, Office of Planning Architectural Historian, Kim Williams, wrote the nomination to the National Register of Historic Places years overdue, and the site was designated a park. It was originally designed by America’s Foremost Landscape Architect, Fredrick Law Olmsted Jr., as has been related by Bloomingdale seniors in oral histories.
National Register of Historic Places nomination ( )
She describes a remarkably intact, fascinating, even charming, engineering marvel, the worshipers of profits are asking to demolish and over build and super urbanize it into a crass suburban medical office and condo park like Tyson's Corner.
We want to preserve our “great outdoor” space for decent air, exercise, nutrition, and help keep our people out of the doctor’s office, not build massive medical offices.
Public land for public needs, like a DC Wolf Trap outdoor concert stage for festivals, plays, music with sunset vistas will enhance our city. We need a Glen Echo type arts/education campus for young and families. Glen Echo Consortium (MD Parks, National Park Service, and Montgomery County) offers 90 pages of classes and activities 365 days a year.
We need your help to fight, this “monstrosity” of massive hideous construction, in historic Bloomingdale, in the courts. The DC government, like so many, destructive to the environment and public health, needs a bloody nose. A lawsuit for this violation of our rights, is needed, we must remind them who they were elected to represent, and Save McMillan Park!

                   Pope Francis
"We have created new idols.
The worship of the ancient Golden Calf has returned in a new ruthless guise in the idolatry of money and the dictatorship of an impersonal economy lacking a truly human purpose"

McMillan Coalition for Sustainable Agriculture
Daniel Goldon Wolkoff,

People have asked me about our water system and how it works, so here is a very well detailed article about this important item in our lives.
Contact  your Council members, speak up at your ANC meetings.  Don't let the government give away what should be a big park for you.   Demand that a portion of this park be opened for public use in time for this summer.  Seventy five years with a big fence and no public use is an outrage.

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