Update at 3:30 p.m. — Zimmerman unveiled a new “Business Center” web portal at this afternoon’s board meeting. The portal is “designed to make the County web site work better for Arlington business owners,” according to county spokeswoman Mary Curtius.
On New Year’s Day, County Board Chairman Chris Zimmerman kicked off the year by declaring that the board wanted to be seen a “facilitator, a partner to small business” in 2011.
The subtext of his comment was that the county was looking to reverse course from 2010, when a series of mini-controversies over enforcement of county ordinances had some entrepreneurs questioning Arlington’s commitment to small business.
Among the dust-ups: American Flatbread’s request for patio seating was denied in July. Then Screwtop Wine Bar and Bakeshop had their sandwich board-style signs confiscated and thrown in a dumpster by a county employee. Then some soon-to-open businesses began complaining about delays caused by zoning issues. And finally, the icing on the cake was a lawsuit filed by a doggy daycare owner over a mural that the county argued was disallowed under the sign ordinance. (A judge later sided with the county.)
With that unpleasantness behind him, Zimmerman is now organizing a small business “listening session” on March 31. In a letter to business owners, Zimmerman writes that “to make improvements that really work for business, we need direct input from our business owners and those who support them.”
The forum also comes at a time when the county is in the process of rewriting its zoning ordinance, including the sign ordinance, to correct inconsistencies and ambiguities. Zimmerman has also hinted that the board may relax certain regulations.
“Many feel [the zoning ordinance] is overly restrictive and unnecessarily hard to understand and comply with,” Zimmerman said at the Jan. 1 board meeting. “There has to be a better way. In 2011, we’re going to find one.”
See Zimmerman’s letter to business owners, after the jump.
March 10, 2010
Local entrepreneurship is essential to the vitality of our community, to give it unique character, to mark it as an authentic place, not just another indistinguishable product in a chain of mass-produced suburbs. We must continue to find ways to help small businesses succeed. As Chairman of the County Board for 2011, one of my most pressing concerns is the state of Arlington’s small businesses, and the role our local government plays in developing ways to improve our processes and regulations. But to make improvements that really work for business, we need direct input from our business owners and those who support them.
On March 31, 2011 you’ll have an opportunity to provide valuable and constructive feedback to County Board members and the Arlington County staff at a “listening session” from 7 to 10 p.m., at the Clarendon Ballroom, 3185 Wilson Boulevard.
This is an open forum with Arlington small business owners and those who support them. Everyone involved with small businesses in Arlington is encouraged to attend. This session is free but registration is reqired. Please register online.
Chairman, Arlington County Board
Strong wind gusts have brought down trees and knocked out power in parts of Arlington tonight. More than 3,500 Dominion customers were without power in Arlington as of 10:45 p.m….
A 40-year-old Arlington man has been arrested and charged with murder. James Ray Williams is accused of fatally shooting a man at an apartment on the 100 block of N….
Arlington is not just a place on a map — it’s a community. And the heart of this community lies in its small mom-and-pop shops. These small, family-owned businesses have…
Good Friday evening, Arlington. Today we published articles that were read a total of 8607 times… so far. 📈 Top stories The following are the most-read articles for today —…
Arlington and its neighbors have become more segregated in the last 10 years while fair housing legislation at the state level faces significant roadblocks. Arlington’s fair housing enforcement, education, and commitment to equity practices in housing policy and programs are beginning to show signs of improvement but much more needs to be done.
Join the NAACP Arlington Branch, HOME of Virginia, and Equal Rights Center for the 2nd Annual Arlington Fair Housing Conference on April 15th to discuss the threats and opportunities to advancing fair housing policy across the state and within Arlington.
The half-day, in-person event will feature speakers from fair housing advocacy organizations and government agencies including the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, and focus on fair housing policy trends in Virginia and Arlington County. The conference aims to advance the understanding of issues and policies related to equity and affirmatively further fair housing among local officials, advocates, and members of the public.
2nd Annual Arlington Fair Housing Conference
Is home ownership a goal of yours in 2023? Now is the time to make it happen! Grab a (virtual) drink with the area’s top Real Estate experts, learn all about the home buying process and on how you can get $1,500 towards your closing costs immediately!
Did you know the average Arlington renter will spend $150K in 5 years of renting? Stop paying down someone else’s mortgage! Join us for a Rent vs. Buy Happy Hour on Wednesday, April 5th at 6 p.m. via Zoom. If this time doesn’t work, we also are offering times convenient for your schedule!
A lot has happened in the local market since the beginning of the pandemic. Sip on your drink of choice and learn from Northern Virginia, Arlington and Washingtonian Magazines top producing agents! We will discuss the latest market updates, the home buying process and rent vs. buy cost savings. Please RSVP by clicking here.
Call/text Manavi at 703-869-6698 with any questions!
Private School Fair
Congressional School to Host MONA Private School Fair Thursday, April 27 at 6:30 PM
Congressional School in Falls Church, VA is delighted to host the MONA (Mothers of North Arlington) at an upcoming Private School Fair. Private schools from around
WHS Spring Festival
Join us at the WHS Spring Festival on April 22, 2023, from 10am- 3pm at Wakefield High School(main parking lot). Come out to shop, play, and eat!
Shop local vendors, arts & crafts, new and used items, food vendors/trucks, and