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Gray, students to talk noise law
Mayor Vincent Gray has agreed to meet with students to discuss D.C. Council’s “nighttime noise prohibition” Disorderly Conduct Law, among other issues, the DC Student Alliance, a student advocacy group of elected representatives from 15 Washington-area universities, announced yesterday in a press release.
The DCSA requested a meeting in a Feb. 23 letter to four D.C. officials about the ambiguities and potential abuses of the new law, which outlaws “unreasonably loud noises from 10 p.m. to 7 a.m.”
Besides the noise law, the students invited to the meeting plan to use the opportunity to foster a working relationship with the mayor.
“[It’s] a great opportunity to open up a wider dialog about how the student community can interact with the wider D.C. community,” DCSA Executive Director Andy MacCracken, a senior at American University, said.
DCSA Chairperson Ben Markus, a senior at the University of the District of Columbia, plans to mention Gray’s proposal to end enrollment and employee caps on D.C. universities.
“I will push the Mayor to see the positives universities and students bring to a community,” Markus wrote in an email. “Enrollment caps hinder the city’s ability to use universities to its advantage.”
Markus also plans to urge the mayor’s office to better serve D.C.’s students, who account for one-sixth of the city’s population. Specifically, he will request the creation of a committee designed to discuss student-community issues.
Gray has said that he is open—albeit cautiously—to ending enrollment and employee caps on D.C. universities in order to maximize their economic input.
“I need to understand more about what these jobs would be and reasons for those caps,” Gray said in a Dec. 13 interview with the Washington Examiner.
Adam Mortillaro (COL ’12), the Georgetown University Student Association representative to DCSA and a signatory of the initial letter, said in an interview that he looks forward to developing a positive relationship with the mayor.
“We hope to get our foot in the door in case future issues arise,” he said.
MacCracken attributes the initiative to recent pan-city student organization. DCSA was founded in 1996, but only restructured in the last year to better serve its constituency.
“What we are seeing is fundamental shift in how students are collaborating with each other,” MacCracken said. “[This is the] first time there has been a joint statement from students from across D.C.”