Berwyn District Civic Association (BDCA)

Meeting Minutes

May 18, 2006

8 – 10:15 p.m.


  1. Introductions, Roll Call - BDCA President Heather Iliff called the meeting to order at 8:00 p.m., followed by roll call for officers.  The following officers were present: Jack Perry, Bob Baca, Tim Triplett, Harry Pitt, Sue Hester, Jerry Anzulovic, Chris Moss, Mark Shute, Mark Seaton, and Al Cutino.


  1. Approval of Minutes – a motion was made to approve the meeting minutes from 04.20.06.  The motion passed, and the minutes were accepted.


  1. Candidates Forum – Each candidate was allowed 10 minutes to introduce themselves, followed by a brief Q&A. 


a)     Eric Olsen for City Council – This is Eric’s ninth year in City Council.  He stresses the importance of neighborhood preservation issues and promotes community involvement.  Eric feels we need more code enforcement officers and we need to focus on schools, crime and public safety issues.  He supports the purple line and feels we need to fight for better transportation such as the Paint Branch bike path issue.

b)     Ben Barnes for MD House of Delegates, 21st District – Ben is an attorney practicing in Laurel, MD and he was raised in Prince George’s County.  Ben feels we need more diversity in our public education system along with new schools, more teachers and character education.  He is 100% for the purple line and other mass transit ideas.  He encourages community-based policing in order to reduce crime.  To learn more about Ben, go to

c)      Mark Cook for MD House of Delegates, 21st District – Mark is President of Cook Networking, a computer consulting company.  Mark wants to improve the quality of life for our community and would like the people who commute here, to live here, which would provide a stronger sense of community and less traffic. He wants to extend the green line to Beltsville, Laurel and BWI.  Mark wants to fight for more affordable college, better Pre-K and after-school programs.  To learn more about Mark, go to

d)     Joseline Pena-Melnyk – Joceline is a former Assistant U.S. Attorney and is a two-term member of College Park City Council.  Joseline would like to reduce crime by introducing community centers and youth programs to our area.  She supports expanding metro to BWI and she is for the proposed purple line.  To learn more about Joseline, go to


Question and Answer


Question: County Council will not give power to the city. What are you going to do about this?

Eric Olsen – Eric has fought for the power.  The local government has zoning authority and he agrees that the decisions should be made locally.


Question: Are you pro-life or pro-choice?

Answer: Mark, Joseline, Ben and Eric are all pro-choice.


Question: How can we eliminate the number of rental properties in our neighborhood?

Mark: Take out the economic advantage and build more student dorms/apartments.  The neighborhood needs to be majority home owners.

Joseline: Build more student housing away from Route 1. This requires more funding in order to revitalize the area and improve Route 1.

Ben: He was one of the organizers of the College Park Homes Fair.  He will continue to work with this neighborhood coalition.

Eric: Rental homes need to be checked often for rental licenses. We need to increase the fine for liter and continue to implement the noise enforcement code.


Question: How can we spur the transit authorities to help improve problem areas such as the entrance and exits into Lakeland?

Mark: We have to squeeze the state highway administration and develop a coalition.

Joseline: We need to bring it up in the planning department with the help of city officials. But, we do not need to wait until election, can do something now.

Ben: This needs to be taken up to Annapolis.

Eric: Clearly Route 1 is a mess.  We need to listen to the community and put more demand on developers.


Jim Rosapepe and staff members stopped by and said a few words to the group.


  1. Neighborhood Watch Update & Discussion – led by Mark Seaton

a)     Arrests were made on the trolley trail.  After members in the neighborhood reported suspicious activity, county police set up a special surveillance and caught people in a shed towards Lakeland community.

b)     Burglary happened while residents were in their home.  Two kids were going around the neighborhood knocking on doors claiming they were from the Boys & Girls Club of Miami.  When no one answered, they broke in to the home through a window.  This information has been forwarded to the District 1 police.

c)      Neighborhood patrol training will be available. Details to follow.


  1. Civic Association Updates and Events

a)     Treasurer Report – Al Cutino reports our largest expense is the newsletter.  The newsletter runs anywhere between $196-303 per month.  We received $245 in donations.

b)     Neighborhood Preservation Coalition – send any investor requests (the postcards that are being sent to residents in the mail) to Kevin Young.

c)      Elections are coming up. Positions available include President, Vice President, 2 recording secretaries and an organizer for Berwyn Day.


  1. Adjournment



Meeting attendees:



Sue Hester

Recording Secretary, BDCA