Houtong cat village stock photo from Shawn.ccf/Shutterstock.

This article was posted as an April Fool's joke.

Last year, DC residents elected a lot of exciting and new Advisory Neighborhood Commissioners to their local government. They’ve been quite busy! For example, in Ward 2, ANC Commissioners have been promoting protected bikeways. Ward 6 is encouraging DDOT to improve safety in NoMa with a road diet. Across the city, elected officials and residents are fighting to ensure the city complies with fair housing rules.

We're checking in on some of them to see what they're doing, and to give you some more insight into what they stand for in our fine city.

Ward 1

If you live in U Street, Columbia Heights, Adams Morgan, Mount Pleasant, or nearby neighborhoods, you probably live in Ward 1.

Representing 1D01, Rocket is working to eliminate food deserts. She’s interested in affordable housing programs and density so that everyone can have access to good homes, preferably in tall buildings. Representing 1D04, Panko is a strong supporter of Accessory Apartments, also known as ADUs. Representing 1A06, Oliver’s platform is safety and keeping the peace in his neighborhood. He's a firm supporter of Vision Zero, and he's concerned about the sirens and fireworks within earshot that disturb the peaceful DC streets and their residents, especially the feline ones. Oliver also believes everyone should have access to good food, especially Fancy Feast junk food!

DC can’t be a safe city for everyone unless we all do our part. That’s why this resident in 1A05 is an asset to parking enforcement. Ward 1 is also glad to have someone monitoring the other side of 16th Street NW in Mount Pleasant’s 1D04.

Ward 2

When tourists visit DC, they spend most of their time in Ward 2 — it’s home to Georgetown, Dupont and Logan circles, downtown, and the Mall.

Image by Mike Maguire licensed under Creative Commons.

Representing 2B01, Juniper is quite protective of her neighborhood and its character. She supports historic preservation and would chain herself to any historic building at risk of razing, despite the YIMBY leanings of others in her household. Representing 2B04, Mimi is an expert in ABC licenses and supported the expiration of the East Dupont Circle Moratorium Zone.

Representing 2B05 is Truman, who has been a vocal advocate at local ANC meetings. This is an unusual set up, but 2C02 is represented by a dynamic duo! Penny and Liddy love watching their fellow residents walk to and from work, but think everyone works too hard. They advocate for more naps and leisure time -- and are doing their part to increase the nap hour count in 2C02! Their campaign site is on Instagram.

Formerly representing 1C07 in Adams Morgan, Kiko now represents 2F01 in Logan Circle. She is a self-defined NIMBY vis-à-vis dogs, and sometimes scratches during meetings. However, she is widely supported by neighbors due to her relentless work fighting rats.

Ward 3

Separated from most of the city by Rock Creek Park, Ward 3 is the western corner of the District. It is known for both its beautiful neighborhoods and wealthy enclaves.

Unfortunately, no commissioners from Ward 3 responded to our requests for comment. They may be in Rock Creek Park enjoying the outdoors.

Ward 4

A series of hilly neighborhoods at the top of the District comprise Ward 4. Residents here are from Petworth, Shepherd Park, Brightwood, 16th Street Heights, and Takoma, among other places.

Image by Mr.TinDC licensed under Creative Commons.

Charlie acknowledges that he is a bit on the fringe, in that he is decidedly opposed to government efforts to reduce the rat population.

Like their counterparts in 2C02, Hazel and Buddy are splitting duties to represent 4C07. They are working to attract more birds to chirp at out the windows, help small businesses so cat parents can buy cute things to bring home, install catnip rain gardens, and use innovative technology for rat abatement. No word on whether they’ve spoken to Charlie about this last issue yet.

TJ is not totally clear who he represents, owing to the sometimes strange way DC boundaries are drawn. TJ lives in a few houses on the border of 4C09 and 4C10 depending on which house is getting more sun. He is a big solar for all supporter.

Ward 5

Bloomingdale, Trinidad, Brookland, Fort Totten — these are a few of the neighborhoods included in Ward 5, which covers much of Northeast DC.

Representing 5D01, Lexi has pushed developers in NoMa and Union Market to create more cat-friendly housing, and is a fierce ally for undocumented felines in the neighborhood. Representing 5E03 are Fiona and Luna, two of the District’s youngest representatives. They were born after election day but have already declared themselves co-commissioners.

Demeter, who represents 5E05, supports bicycle access to natural surface trails in DC and improved trash pick-up and disposal facilities in Wards 7 and 8 to keep Fort Circle and Fort Dupont trash free! She also advocates for government transparency, as well as more open data systems and APIs from the DC government. Representing 5E08, Wallace uses his Brookland perch to oversee the resodding of Crispus Attucks Park.

Ward 6

Ward 6 covers a lot of ground and a wide swath of DC neighborhoods. On one end, you can be standing in Navy Yard, outside of Nationals Park, while on the other you’re in Shaw.

Hobbes was elected to represent 6A01 on their marketing photo alone. We’re still unclear on Hobbes’ ANC priorities, we know they are plotting to learn how to ride their owner’s bike. Perhaps this will make Hobbes a budding champion for bike lanes. Taco, who represents 6B06, loves bikes, kids, safe routes to school. Taco has an extensive blog on cat cycling policy. In 6C01, Winifred is working to eliminate the Capitol Hill Historic District to build high density cat condos.

In 6D06, Isabella is all about promoting pedestrian rights and safety. Alfred Saxon in 6D07 has been a mainstay of local government, but recently returned to Twitter. They are a founder of CRAVE: Cats Really Against Vacuuming and Vision Zero Mice. Also representing 6D07 are Mo and Freddie. They're transportation policy wonks who are also advocating for more plain language in our government documents rather than all the jargon.

Ward 7

DC’s Ward 7 is the northern half of neighborhoods east of the Anacostia River, plus an adjacent section on its western shore.

Audrey's home abuts ANC 7D and 7C, so she ran for an unprecedented joint appointment—and won! Her platform: more faucet water on all the time, more windows wide open, more thoughtful mixed-use, mixed-income development on commercial corridors. Some cat commissioners shared thoughts on the hyperloop. Audrey is also pro-hyperloop as long as it’s rainbow and accessible to all cats. Hazel and Buddy, who jointly represent 4C07, support the project as long as there are safe, comfy rest stops along the way.

Felix represents ANC7B. Felix is working to eliminate alarm clocks in favor of water glasses to knock on the floor at 4 a.m., reducing mandatory minimums for indoors cats who habitually sneak out the door, and running laptops with open Word docs to nap on for all. Hazel represents 7D01 and her platform is naps and crumpled foil balls for all!

Ward 8

East of the Anacostia River, the southern half of the area is Ward 8, which contains neighborhoods such as Historic Anacostia, Barry Farm, Congress Heights, and Shipley Terrace.

While no representatives in Ward 8 were able to respond to our request for comment, we think Anacostia Cats Center deserves a shoutout. The ACC opened in 2013. It’s 9,300 square feet, and includes a 1,000 square feet Cardboard Box Theater; space for five cat habitats; a short term exhibition gallery called Scratching Post SE, a cat cafe, and lounge area. The Cats Center’s parent organization is focused on neighborhood-scale business development and general business support.

Honorable mention: Virginia and Maryland

Though this is obviously focused on our Advisory Neighborhood Commissioners, we'd be remiss if we didn't point out that in politics and policy, reaching a paw across the aisle (or across the river, as it were) is beneficial. After all, Metrorail runs into both Virginia and Maryland and affordable housing policies in DC can help show residents that it's possible in Maryland, too.

Snowflake represents Long Branch Creek in south Arlington! Snowflake recently received A+ grades in his newest pursuit, leash training. They have master hunting skills, and will drop toy mice at your feet all day long. Snowflake also excels at public speaking and neighborhood watch duty. Bonus for exceedingly long fuzzy tail.

Stanley is currently running for the Fairfax County board of supervisors. His platform is free turkey for low income cats, expanded transit, and increased density along the Southeast county corridor.

Max is shaking his head at the Virginia governor’s mansion right now, and has established an exploratory committee to determine the best strategy for running out the door and into the apartment hallway like he’s always dreamed, and to be the next governor of Virginia.