Glover's Replies to the Disabilities Advisory Council

How do you see the City fostering compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, both internally and within the larger community?
Accessibility should be a foundation of urban design. At least one fifth of Americans have some form of mobility diffficulty or functional difficulty. A city which does not respect this reality is itself disabled. Most of us recall dangerous situations and close calls-- the difference between ability and disability is one inch or one second. ---Our City should lead in providing best access to every good and necessary thing. New buildings should obviously be held to the best standards mandated. Retrofit could be facilitated with tax credits, grants and community-build-- like playgrounds, ramps and raised bed gardens. The City could maintain an accessible property register.

There has been a problem with getting timely appointments to advisory boards. What will you do to assure than seats are filled with qualified members?
I believe that the mayor's authority to appoint should expire three months after any vacancy and City Council should be then required to appoint within one month, when candidates are available.

How do you see the Disability Advisory Council being helpful to you?
Those who encounter obstacles directly need to be welcomed to teach the community. DAC is Ithaca's best source for this insight. The DAC might sponsor a Disability Congress, to educate us.

Do you have any issues you'd like us to address on behalf of the City?
Automobiles are both a convenience and an impediment to access. They dominate urban life. Those who are both totally dependent on cars and most bounded by them should be encouraged to systematically assess the impact of this form of mobility on their lives. Similar surveys for housing availability and suggestions for access reform in related arenas of daily life could enlighten policy.

What improvements have you seen in the City?
Kneeling buses seem more regularly available. Curb cuts seem to be maintained and orderly, and expanded, though the quality of installation should be judged by those most reliant on them. City Hall seems more accessible.

What do you think needs to change?
Bus service should be more frequent and cheaper. I'd propose a penny per gallon gasoline tax to fund TCAT. Snowshoveling should be organized, with student volunteers (and vouchers for volunteers from local businesses) so that all walks are always passable. I'm told that City staff have used handicapped parking spaces in the parking garages as trash and city vehicle parking. That should be corrected. The library needs special access from the parking lot. There is unnecessarily irregular paving on the Commons.

Finally, America's cultural enthusiasm for speed and brute force should not be celebrated here.