Citizens for A Better City, a nonpartisan political coalition which holds all seven seats on the Falls Church City Council is scheduled to hold an open nominating convention Feb. 1 at George Mason High School.
The terms of four council members expire in May and three members - John Enright, Harold Silverstein and Edward Strait - have announced that they will not seek re-election. A fourth council member, Carol DeLong, said she is undecided about whether to run for another four-year term. Roger Wollenberg, CBC president, said council members are paid approximately $1,200 per year for the part-time positions.
According to Wollenberg, three persons have declared their candidacy for the CBC nomination. They are Gary Knight, a planning commission member and associate manager of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Robert Hubbell, a retired Agency for International Development division chief and Nancy Stock, a homemaker and self-described "involved citizen."
Wollenberg said that the 550-member CBC is patterned after the nonpartisan and politically effective Arlingtonians for a Better County organization. Wollenberg said that in its 19-year existence with CBC has emphasized good schools and preservation of the city's residential character.
"I think this will be the most significant convention we've had so far, because we have at least three seats open," said Wollenberg. He noted that the convention, which will operate on a town-meeting format and accept nominations from the floor, is open to all voting Falls Church residents.
Knight, who lives at 211 S. Virginia Ave., has a master's degree in public administration from American University. If elected, Knight said he would continue to "fight off attempts to make our community indistinguishable from the rest of 'mass suburbia' while maintaining the city's services.
Hubbell, 59, of 303 N. Lee St. is making his first bid for office. He has a master's degree from Harvard University.
"I'm concerned about keeping things going which were started by the CBC," Hubbell said. He said he favors keeping Falls Church a residential community with good public services, low tax rates and no additional strip zoning.
Stock, 48, attended Acquinas College in Grand Rapids, MIch. She lives at 707 Poplar Dr.A former president of the League of Women Voters, she is making her first bid for public office.
I think the city council should do all in its power [WORD ILLEGIBLE] the business community," she said. Stock said she favors improving the traffic patterns and parking on Board Street and developing retail stores in Falls Church "which meet citizens' needs."
A competing group which, in the words of one of its founders, supports "more development of business wastelands" is being formed to combat the CBC influence in city politics.
According to Charles Weir, an unsuccessful city council aspirant in 1976 and one of the founders of Falls Church Citizens for Good Government, that group will hold a nominating convention to endorse four candidates in mid-Feburary.