News and notes from Reston (tm).

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Reston Master Plan: Community Group Looking for a Few Good Strawmen

For Master Plan.jpgWhat, with the snow and the snow and the snow and the digging out from the snow, it's been a while since we've touched on the Reston Master Plan. As long speculated, the official and succinctly named Reston Master Plan Special Study Task Force has opted not to formally incorporate the community work groups proposed by Reston 2020. So it will trudge onward, as will the RA Board, which will provide support of its own:

Dick Stillson, Reston 2020 co-chair, started by noting that it appears that the community will have to move forward on its own to support the task force because the task force has not further considered the Reston 2020 Community Work Group (CWG) proposal per a conversation with is chair, Patty Nicoson. She offered a deficient alternative of task force member-led special topic groups on matters peripheral to the task force’s primary agenda. In a conversation with Stillson Feb. 3rd, Paul Thomas, the Reston Association Board’s member of the Task Force, said that the RA Board had charged its key committees to support the task force through the RA Board. He suggested that Reston 2020 proceed with its specific studies and write papers to the task force, preferably endorsed by all three key Reston civic groups (RA, RCA, & ARCH).
Confused? Us too. But Reston 2020 is seeking people to participate in its own working groups, and has sent this message out to the people of Reston on the Internets:
Reston Residents: 
The Reston 2020 Committee is a committee of the Reston Citizens Association which monitors land use planning in Reston.  Currently, we are most involved with monitoring and helping the Task Force of the Reston Master Plan Special Study.  As a way to better educate ourselves and provide a way for many people to participate in the planning process, we are forming working groups concerning several important areas that the Task Force will be considering.  These are: 

•          Transportation;
•          Environment;
•          Parks, Recreation and Public Facilities;
•          Residential and Urban Design, and Livability;          

We hope the groups will read studies concerning their topics that have been done on other areas, beginning with the Tyson’s Corner Planning Task Force, invite outside experts to obtain their views, and organize field trips to inspect and better understand the areas affected by the planning.  They will work closely with the advisory committees of the Reston Association who are working on similar topics.  They will prepare brief written reports and presentations on what they learn and provide the Task Force with their views.             

We hope that you may be interested in participating in one of the groups.  They will meet at least once per month and will be chaired by a member of the 2020 Committee. It will require some commitment of time and effort over the next several months but it will be well worth it to be able to contribute to the planning process.  Please e-mail me by February 19 if you are interested and state which of the groups you would like to join. Thank you. 

Dick Stillson
Co-Chair, RCA’s Reston 2020 Committee
For what it's worth. Maybe you too can come up with your own strawman!


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Will it be election fraud and Reston Association cover up? Maybe people who are powerful and devious enough to perpetrate fraud are clever and diabolical enough to avoid detection and shift the blame.

    What are you talking about Rod?

    The Reston Association sent out emails urging citizens to volunteer to shovel sidewalks and bus stops so that students could return to school under three current candidates board candidates in the current Reston Association Election. They are all in different races.

    Notification had already been sent out by the Fairfax County School Board. So the effect of the Reston Association emails though they claimed to be unofficial was to endorse these candidates above all the other to this active voting group.

    Well what if they had nothing to do with the email? Is it really their fault?

    What if they win the election, won't there then be a lingering doubt that the email campaign was the thing that pushed these candidates over the edge?

    Well Rod what if they are just better candidates, more civic minded and the voters just sense that?

    Well then why have a election at all? Why not just allow the board to select whomever they deem best. It could save the Reston Association some $20,000 (or is it $40,000)

    With these concerns in mind I emailed the Reston Election Committee. The fate of freedom of election in Reston is in their hands. I include the email address so that interested citizens might want to write the committee of their concerns.

    the election committee: regarding improprieties regarding the Reston Association sending out possibly unauthorized emails having the effect of endorsing candidates for the current election.

    From: Rod Koozmin
    To: Sean Bahrami ;;;; tim donohue 37 ;; David Robinson 2 ; Peter Greenberg ; Guy L. Rando ;; Ken Knueven ; Kevin Danaher ; Kevin Danaher 2 ; Michael E. Collins ; Patrick Shipp ; Peter Greenberg 2 ; Rengin Morro
    Cc:; Observer lwtter to the editor ; fairfaxtimes 12th version
    Sent: Tue, Feb 16, 2010 11:00 am
    Subject: the election committee: regarding improprieties regarding the Reston Association sending out possibly unauthorized emails having the effect of endorsing specific candidates

    To The Reston Association Election Committee: If I understand it correctly the Reston Association Email list was used to enlist Reston citizens to shovel snow and imply that it was the brain child of three separate citizens
    who also happened to be running for three separate races in the current Reston election.

    The notice which I think was great had already gone out to parents of school children by Fairfax county school board so sending it on the RA list had the effect, though it was said to be unofficial, of putting the three in a good light coming as it did from the RA with Reston citizens

    I question if Reston resources should be used in this way. Reston candidates are extremely limited by the RA in words for their goals and practicality from contacting citizens. Most citizens do not vote, those on the list probably do.

    I would like a investigation on how this could happen. I would also like a explanation of how it happened sent out to the list and all the candidates in the current election. And could the remaining five candidates who are not in effect endorsed also be allowed to use the list for a charity of their choosing or good works so as to balance the effect of this out before the current election is over?

    -Rod Koozmin
    Candidate for the at Large Seat of the Reston Association

    703 945 0171 cell
    Posted by Rod's Sharpening Service or Sharpening in Reston at 2:40 PM

  3. I wonder who authorized the use of the RA email distribution list? Milton Matthews, the CEO? It is clear to me that this is an improper act meant to support a set of candidates.

    And Mr. Koozmin is right. The other candidates need access to the RA email distribution list to put their names in front of Reston homeowners. That would be fair.

  4. Doesn't it say somewhere in the bylaws that Reston Association is to remain neutral in board elections?

    We are being treated to another example of RAs complete disregard for our governing documents.

    April can't come soon enough. Please pay attention homeowners and vote. The future of this community depends on your voting for board members who will represent you.

  5. Vote for the the snow shovel out candidates who are endorsed by Richard Chew!

  6. Dick Stillson needs volunteers to participate in the process to rewrite the Reston Master Plan. Our future as a community is at stake.

  7. The RA Board should be called out for their actions of blatantly endorsing candidates. RA Board member Richard Chew should personally apologize for his role in the email that went out to RA residents. FCPS asked for help and many communities responded. It was not and should not have been a "campaign event". Very underhanded, very manipulative and very much an example of the way the Reston Association Board of Director's has handled themselves under Robin Smyers/MIlton Matthews. If there wasn't so much at stake it would be laughable - but the bottom line is you have people operating on your Reston Association Board of Directors who are very motivated to spend your money and hand the keys to Reston to Fairfax County/Cathy Hudgins.


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