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Jim Burton’s Book – The Pentagon Wars Re-Issued

April 1, 2014 by Blue Ridge Leader Lifestyle, People Be the first to comment
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Jim Burton’s 1993 book, The Pentagon Wars, has recently been reissued in e-book format by Naval Institute Press and is now available at Amazon.com for Kindle users and Barnes & Noble for Nook users as well as in other e-book formats.  Print on Demand paper copies will also be available shortly, as soon as the publisher corrects a technical problem with their equipment.

The Pentagon Wars won The Washington Monthly Political Book of the Year award for 1993 and was favorably reviewed in a number of publications, including The New York Times (October 3, 1993). It was made into an HBO movie in which Cary Elwes starred as Colonel Burton and Kelsey Grammar played a combination of four or five senior army generals. Over the last 20 years the book (and the movie, when the book was unavailable) has been used as a case study in ethics classes at the Air Force Academy and other institutions as well as military seminars. … Continue Reading

Park and Ride Lots for Western Loudoun

March 4, 2014 by Jim Burton Editorial, Opinion 2 comments
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In 2003, the county purchased 22 commuter buses to serve a growing demand for bus service to Washington D.C. The demand has grown exponentially ever since. The county now owns or leases 65 large commuter buses (with plush seats and on board restrooms) and more are being added every year. The buses are often filled to standing room only as more than 3,500 riders prefer the comfortable bus ride over the daily hassle of fighting the traffic on the major east/west arteries leading to points east.

There are now 20 park and ride lots in Loudoun, but unfortunately, only two lots are in Western Loudoun: a permanent county-owned lot just east of Hamilton on Business Rt. 7, and a temporary leased lot at the St. Andrews Presbyterian Church in Purcellville. … Continue Reading

Is the County’s Word Worth a Plug Nickel?

February 5, 2014 by Jim Burton Editorial, Opinion 1 comment
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Should the county light all of Franklin Park’s playing fields including the ones on the upper plateau, one of the highest elevations in the Loudoun Valley? This was the subject of a recent community meeting held by Blue Ridge Supervisor Janet Clarke and Loudoun County staff as they explained Ms. Clarke’s proposal and the government process for implementing that proposal. However, the proposal raises questions about more than just lights. It also raises questions about citizen trust in government and the validity of promises made by a government to its citizens. In short, how binding is a Board of Supervisors vote two decades ago (a vote that carried the force of law) on a board today? A look at the history of Franklin Park offers one lesson, especially in light of the board’s recent vote on Autumn Hill. … Continue Reading

Unreasonable Fiscal Guidance

December 5, 2012 by Jim Burton Government, News Be the first to comment
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In October, the Board of Supervisors issued fiscal guidance to the School Board to prepare its FY 14 budget at a level that would be lower than the current FY 13 budget, despite the fact that over 2,500 new students will enter the system, two new elementary schools will open, and contributions to the Virginia Retirement System must increase significantly to repay temporary reductions taken by Governor McDonnell during the economic crisis of 2009. The guidance was issued without any discussions with the School Board or School Administration with regard to consequences. Supervisors claimed that the school system is rife with inefficiencies and a bloated administration that can absorb significant reductions without harming the actual education of the county’s children. Yet, not one Supervisor offered a definition of “efficiency” such that an objective evaluation of that claim can be accomplished. In my opinion, the Supervisors are wrong. … Continue Reading

Railing Over Rail

June 17, 2012 by Jim Burton Editorial, Opinion Be the first to comment
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Printed with permission from www.jimburton.org

The Board of Supervisors must decide by July 4 whether or not Loudoun will participate in the Phase II Metrorail project which will bring rail to Dulles Airport and two Loudoun stations west of Dulles. It has been one of the most hotly debated subjects in recent memory. The blogosphere has been full of comments pro and con, some articulate and fact-based, as well as those which have been ideologically based, emotional, or totally irrational. … Continue Reading

Why Launch www.JimBurton.org?

June 5, 2012 by Blue Ridge Leader Government, News Be the first to comment
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By Jim Burton

From January 1, 1996 until January 1, 2012, I served on the Loudoun County Board of Supervisors. During this period, the County underwent the most dramatic changes in its history. The population grew from approximately 120,000 to over 320,000 as thousands of acres of farmland were converted into sprawling suburban subdivisions. Loudoun became one of the fastest growing counties in the nation, at times even the fastest growing.

The school system grew from 17,000 students in the mid-1990’s to over 67,000 in 2011 as 46 new schools were built and opened. A predominantly all-volunteer fire and rescue system painfully changed to a system dominated by career firefighters and EMT specialists. Demand for playing fields and other recreational facilities soared. Traffic came to a halt. … Continue Reading

Candidates for Board of Supervisors, Blue Ridge District

September 1, 2011 by Blue Ridge Leader Government, News 1 comment
Burton – Jim and Lina

JIm Burton

Jim Burton has represented both the old Mercer District and the Blue Ridge District. The two Districts contain a wide variety of communities, leading Jim to develop a broad perspective on governing in his role as a supervisor. Jim lives with his wife, Lina in Aldie. He and Lina have two children, four granddaughters and one grandson. Details at www.jimburton.org.

  1. The recession has hit local government pretty hard. What kind of condition are the County finances in this, the third year of the economic downturn?

    Even though we lost 14 percent of our tax base due to plummeting property values, by tightening our belts and making some very difficult decisions, we have come through the recession in far better shape than most jurisdictions. We were able to open seven new schools, retain our AAA bond rating by all three rating agencies, hold the average homeowner’s tax bill in fiscal 2010, 2011, and 2012 to a level below 2009, and finish FY11 with a significant fund balance. Although we see positive signs of a recovery, we are not out of the woods yet. If there is a double-dip recession, we will be faced with some very difficult decisions with long-lasting consequences.

  2. Loudoun County’s Comprehensive Plan seeks to both accommodate growth and protect the rural economy of our county through what’s known as the “Transition Area” – a zoning designation located in between the more urbanized east and the more rural west. The Board of Supervisors recently approved a major new commercial development in the Transition Area called Stonewall Secure Business Park. You voted against this. Can you explain your vote to us in the context of how the Comprehensive Plan is supposed to work, and the “build out” numbers that plan assumes? … Continue Reading

Voter Redistricting Update

March 30, 2011 by Jim Burton Government, News Be the first to comment
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Dear Neighbor,

After much debate and not a little vitriol, the Board concluded its redistricting discussions with a narrow majority selecting a revised version of the Miller 5 Plan. The revisions include returning the Hillsboro precinct to my district, the transfer of both Hamilton precincts to Supervisor Kurtz’ district and the trading of two precincts between the districts represented by Supervisors Delgaudio and McGimsey. Although I was the lone vote against the plan when Supervisor Miller first submitted it in February, I was a reluctant 5th vote in favor of the plan’s selection on Tuesday [March 15th]. What changed my mind? … Continue Reading

Windy Hill Hosts Ribbon Cutting

October 19, 2010 by Blue Ridge Leader News Be the first to comment
Supervisor Jim Burton, Blue Ridge District is fourth from right

Supervisor Jim Burton, Blue Ridge District is fourth from right

The Windy Hill Foundation will conduct a ribbon cutting ceremony on Saturday, October 16, at 3:00 p.m. to celebrate completion of a $644,500 renovation of 11 single-family cottages on Windy Hill Road at the western edge of Middleburg. One third of the funding for this project ($200,000) came from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA). Another $392,500 was contributed to the project from the Loudoun County Housing Trust Fund and the balance, $52,000, came from Windy Hill Foundation’s local fund raising. Loudoun County will be represented at the ribbon cutting by Supervisor Jim Burton.

Chesapeake Bay Preservation Act Work Program Presented September 1

September 3, 2010 by Blue Ridge Leader Loudoun County, News Be the first to comment

On September 1 Supervisor Jim Burton of the Blue Ridge District, and Supervisor Sally Kurtz of the Catoctin District hosted a community meeting for the Chesapeake Bay Preservation Act at the Loudoun County Government Center. A power point presentation was given by Laura Edmonds, who is an environmental engineer and manager for the Chesapeake Bay project. Also in attendance were David Ward, water resources team, Kevin Haile, erosion and sediment control program administrator, Dan Schardein, zoning administrator and Mark Stultz, deputy zoning administrator.

Click here to view the presentation.

Kurtz and Burton To Meet on Chesapeake Bay

August 21, 2010 by Blue Ridge Leader Loudoun County Be the first to comment

On Wednesday, September 1, at 7:00 p.m. in the Board Room of the Loudoun County Government Center, located at 1 Harrison Street, SE, in Leesburg, Sally Kurtz, Catoctin District Supervisor and Jim Burton, Blue Ridge District Supervisor, will co-host a community meeting to discuss the Loudoun County Chesapeake Bay Preservation Act Work Program. Loudoun County staff will provide a presentation on the proposed Loudoun County Chesapeake Bay Preservation Act Work Program followed by a question and answer session with meeting attendees.

Information about the Chesapeake Bay Preservation Act Work Program will be posted throughout the project on the county website at www.loudoun.gov/chesapeakebay. Questions may be directed to county staff through the Chesapeake Bay Hotline at 703-777-0655 or by e-mail to ChesBay@loudoun.gov. Given the great interest in this matter please allow staff a couple of days to respond to your inquiries.

Burton Addresses Chesapeake Bay Act

Dear Neighbors,

In a Meeting Alert I sent out last month, I promised a fuller discussion of the Board’s consideration of the Chesapeake Bay Act. Before I drafted such a discussion I wanted to make sure that I fully understood the context (historic, scientific, and political), the goals, and the approach. Given the other items before the Board this Spring – the Countywide Transportation Plan, proposed changes to the Land Use Tax Deferral for Open Space, the Kincora Rezoning, the White’s Ford Park Special Exception, meetings with the Bond Rating Agencies – it has been difficult to find the time to undertake such study. This was one of the reasons I moved that the Board table further discussion of the matter until September. … Continue Reading

Burton Addresses Kincora Vote

July 14, 2010 by Jim Burton Loudoun County, News Be the first to comment

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

On Monday night five members of the Board – Scott York, Susan Buckley, Eugene Delgaudio, Stevens Miller, and Lori Waters – approved the Kincora application, which includes 1,400 residential units in an area planned as the County’s premier employment center. I am deeply disappointed in my colleagues’ decision, especially those who professed a commitment to stand by the County’s Comprehensive Plan and to understand the fiscal correlation between residential development and higher taxes. … Continue Reading

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Sustainable Planet

Pungent Curry

9 Apr 2014

noerpel

The latest version of the IPCC report is published and once again it will go unread by the great masses of climate science deniers and unreported by the media. So it might be useful to revisit the fundamental physical realities …

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Ask Dr. Mike

Understanding Teen Suicide

1 Apr 2014

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By Michael Oberschneider, Psy.D. Northern Virginia has recently experienced several teen suicides. Last month, two Langley High School students took their own lives just a day apart from one another, and this month it appears two students at Woodson High …

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Virginia Gardening

Spring Is Coming

4 Mar 2014

springiscoming

By Donna Williamson March is an in-between month – some cold and the return of glorious warmth now and then. One way to bring some delight inside is forcing spring-blooming branches. You can cut branches of forsythia, cherry, crabapple, kerria, …

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Sushi's Corner

An Easter Swim

1 Apr 2014

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I felt like a silly nim “cow” poop with these Easter bows in our hair. Okay Nelly, maybe you didn’t because you’re a girl. But me, a Mighty Cairn Terrier male? – PLEASE! Pleasing Mrs. B for Easter pictures was …

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Amy V. Smith's Money Talks

What Baseball Can Teach You About Financial Planning

1 Apr 2014

Amy Smith-BRL

Spring training is a tradition that baseball teams and baseball fans look forward to every year. No matter how they did last year, teams in spring training are full of hope that a new season will bring a fresh start. …

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Go Take a Hike

Blandy Experimental Farm

6 Jun 2012

Molly

By Molly Pinson Simoneau It’s no secret that I love a challenging hike. I’ve written here about hiking sections of the Appalachian Trail and Shenandoah National Park. I’ve taken vacations with my family to Colorado where I’ve attempted to conquer a “fourteener” (a summit that is higher than 14,000 feet), …

(2 comments)

Real Estate Ticker

A Buying Opportunity?

6 Nov 2013

Carl Fischer headshot

By Carl Fischer As a direct result of the uncertainty that has arisen from national and regional politics, with its unsettling effect on the Northern Virginia area, for the past two months there has been a market slowdown which has …

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From the Farm

From the Farm

5 Jul 2012

From the Farm

When the heat index reaches 110 degrees, as it has been doing recently, I try to keep in the shade, or stay indoors. But my lavender, about halfway from full bloom, seems to thrive in it. Hot and dry, I …

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Events

April 2014
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: Art Gallery Reception for Featured Artists -- Abstract painter Evelyn Lopez de Guzman and contemporary painter Sandra Iafrate

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April 12, 2014N/A

Meet Evelyn and Sandra and other gallery artists during a free, open to the public reception for this month's Featured Artists' exhibit "Living Color,” showcasing two accomplished painters Evelyn Lopez de Guzman and Sandra Iafrate, in a vivid and dynamic presentation of color, shape and our surroundings.

Evelyn Lopez de Guzman’s vibrant paintings awaken the viewer to connect with nature and the modern world through an interplay of shape, color, and textural materials.

Sandra Iafrate’s combination of realistic and surrealist interpretation of flowers, foliage and landscapes on spacious canvases convey a sense of movement and playfulness.

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Easter at "The Park"

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April 19, 2014

Celebrate Easter at historic Morven Park with crafts for kids, an egg hunt in the formal gardens plus a traditional egg roll on the Davis Mansion lawn. Have a family photo taken with the Easter Bunny. Children should bring a basket for the hunt and a large spoon for the egg roll. $10/participating child (ages 2-12), $3/adult. Register at www.MorvenPark.org.

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VAL's Pals Kids Club

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April 30, 2014

Join Inova Loudoun Hospital as the present their Beamer the Dog Program.

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SCOUTING FOR BRICKS

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May 4, 2014

Scouting for Bricks is an exhibit showing the Love for everything LEGO® . Come see amazing LEGO® creations by Fans of LEGO®, LEGO® trains, Mindstorms robots. We will also have live Star Wars Stormtroopers and an interactive play area with over 100,000 LEGO bricks. Scouting for Bricks is fun for the Whole Family! Visit us at www.ScoutingForBricks.com.

Recent Comments

View From the Ridge

Rural Loudoun Is Different, and We Say Dark Skies Do Matter

4 Mar 2014

viewfromridge

In February of this year a sell out crowd gathered at the county public seat in Leesburg to provide feedback to the Loudoun County Planning Commission on the idea of adding additional sports lights to the upper athletic fields at Franklin Park. Franklin Park includes a really wonderful performing arts …

(3 comments)

Editorial

Steady and Nobull

4 Mar 2014

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Park and Ride Lots for Western Loudoun

4 Mar 2014

Jim_Burton_cropped

In 2003, the county purchased 22 commuter buses to serve a growing demand for bus service to Washington D.C. The demand has grown exponentially ever since. The county now owns or leases 65 large commuter buses (with plush seats and on board restrooms) and more are being added every year. The buses are often filled to standing room only as …

(2 comments)

Lifestyle

Sadie’s Race 5K and Fun Run Scheduled for Sunday May 18

9 Apr 2014

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Sadie Smile Foundation is putting on the third annual Sadie’s Race/Walk and Kids Fun Run to Benefit Smile Train in Purcellville Sunday, May 18th this year. The race starts at 8:00 a.m. at the train station at 200 N 21st Street in Purcellville. Sign up at Active.com. When Sara Ablard lost her five year-old daughter, Sadie, two years ago, she …

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Dr. Joseph Rogers Dies at Family Farm

1 Apr 2014

Dr. Joseph Megeath Rogers, 90, died on Saturday March 8, 2014 at his Hillbrook Farm near Hamilton following a stroke. Physician, farmer, businessman, rural land conservationist, philanthropist and expert horseman, Dr. Rogers was a tireless advocate and practitioner of country living whose contributions in a broad range of interests were made quietly and with little fanfare. His public persona was …

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Zoldos Presented Citizen of the Year Award

1 Apr 2014

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At the biweekly March meeting of the Lovettsville Town Council, Mayor Bobby Zoldos was presented the 2013 Citizen of the Year from the Lovettsville Waterford Ruritans. Presenting the award was Rick Adams, current president along with Board Member Peter Mullally and  Vice President Jeff Boogaard. Adams said, “On behalf of the Lovettsville Waterford Ruritans, we would like to present the …

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Around Virginia

Wolf Won’t Seek Re-election

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Rep. Frank Wolf (R-10th) today announced that he would not seek election to an 18th term in 2014. He released the following statement announcing his decision: “I have decided not to seek re-election to the U.S. Congress in 2014. It has been an honor to serve the people of northern …

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Virginia Can and Should Work Harder to Combat Hunger

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By Congressman Frank Wolf Last year, the USDA reported a record number of Americans are struggling to put food on their tables. Across the nation, 49 million people – including 17 million children and six million seniors – are going hungry, a number that has grown substantially over the last …

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Kaine Statement on Navy Yard Shooting

Kaine

U.S. Senator Tim Kaine released the following statement on today’s shooting at the Washington Navy Yard: “My thoughts and prayers are with everyone impacted by today’s tragic shooting at the Washington Navy Yard. As we learn more about the horrific events that unfolded this morning, my deepest sympathies go out …

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Sports

Nominate Your Hometown Hero

9 Apr 2014

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Upper Loudoun Little League’s Hometown Heroes scholarship closes on April 21, 2014. The application is available online at ULLL.org. The scholarship is open to all graduating seniors who played baseball for ULLL at some point in their growing up years.

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Lady Vikings Give Back

10 Feb 2014

The Loudoun Valley Girls basketball team held an event on Friday, February 7 at LVHS. The Lady Vikings celebrated “Pink Night” by honoring those who are battling breast cancer or have been affected by breast cancer. The event was held in conjunction with an event held at Woodgrove earlier this …

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Letters

Medicaid Expansion Battle Heating Up

4 Mar 2014

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Did you know that there’s a very real possibility that a DC-style budget battle and government shutdown could come to Virginia? The Medicaid expansion battle …

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Endorsing for Profit Businesses?

4 Mar 2014

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I recently received an automated email message from the Town of Purcellville soliciting nominations for volunteer award recipients in cooperation with the Purcellville Business Association …

(2 comments)

Another Vote To Overrule Purcellville’s Board of Architectural Review

4 Mar 2014

town of purcellville sign

The Purcellville Town Council, foolishly, in the view of many and perhaps most, has overruled its Board of Architectural Review and approved Mark Nelis’s and …

(3 comments)

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