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City of Falls Church Starts New Year with New Mayor

VIDEO: Click on the video to watch Monday night's Special City Council meeting.

"I'm deeply honored by your selection this evening," said City of Falls Church Mayor David Tarter at Monday night's Special City Council Meeting.
"I'm deeply honored by your selection this evening," said City of Falls Church Mayor David Tarter at Monday night's Special City Council Meeting.
The City of Falls Church City Council elected council member David Tarter as mayor, and council member David Snyder as vice mayor Monday night at its special meeting. Snyder has previously served as mayor and vice mayor.

You can read more about the new mayor on his "Meet Dave" page from his campaign Web site.

Former Mayor Nader Baroukh's city council term continues through Dec. 31, 2015. Baroukh, who served two terms as mayor, declined to seek a another term, he said, to spend more time with his family. He nominated Tarter for mayor at Monday night's meeting; Tarter was then elected in a roll call vote by members of the council.

"I'm deeply honored by your selection this evening, I appreciate the confidence you've shown in me," Tarter said. "I'd like to especially thank my predecessor Nader Baroukh for all his hard work and dedication to the city. He has much to be proud of."

He said the City of Falls Church faces challenges, including surging student enrollment, demand for capital improvements for schools, library, city hall and other infrastructure and continued pressure on the tax rate.

"Fortunately there also many opportunities that can help us meet these challenges," he said, noting "prudent use" of water sale proceeds and proper planning and development of the new land coming into the city as a result of the water sale.

"There's much work ahead, but I believe this council is up to the task," he said. 

Tarter was first elected to City Council in July 2012 and served as chair of the Economic Development Authority. Snyder was elected in 1994. The mayor and vice mayor terms are for two years.

"This is going to be a great council, there's no question about it," said Snyder, enumerating the virtues of each of his colleagues on city council.

"Dan Sze with his extensive environmental and development experiences," he said. "Phil Duncan who perhaps more than anybody I know embodies the principles of the founders of this city. Karen Oliver whose professional and global life experiences are second to none. Marybeth Connelly who's already an institution in this city and is widely admired due to her community work and work in connection with the schools. Nader's extensive public service already and Dave Tarter, one of the hardest working people I know and a first-rate local lawyer.  It's a great opportunity to have the ability to serve with you."

Also at the meeting, Baroukh looked back at some of the developments made during his two-term watch as mayor, mainly streamlining budgetary measures.

The highlight, he said, was settling the water dispute with Fairfax "resulting in a win-win for all parties involved." He thanked the council and staff for working with him on the accomplishments.

In addition to the cash the city received in the water sale, the city brought new property into its borders, he said, calling it "a momentous issue for the city and perhaps the most important change in a generation." 

The City Council will meet again on Monday, Jan. 13 at 7:30 p.m.

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