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May Is all about the Budget, Budget, Budget

By Valerie Cury
At its May 23 meeting, the Purcellville Town Council voted 5-1-1 (with Council Member Doug McCollum voting no) to adopt the FY 2018 Budget. This brought a conclusion to the ten budget meetings that began in November 2016.

Most Council members had offered their suggestions on what to cut, and most of the straw poll votes on proposed cuts had resulted in a 5-2 vote, with a handful supported by McCollum and Council Member Chris Bledsoe. … Continue Reading

Why Your Water Rates Did Not Increase This Year

Understanding Chargeback Accounting Practices

By Kwasi Fraser, Mayor of Purcellville

Over time, chargeback accounting practices used by the Town of Purcellville have resulted in the transfer of over $11 million from the Utility Fund (water and sewer) into the General Fund (Finance, Police, Maintenance, IT, Human Resources, etc.). … Continue Reading

Purcellville: Another Dense Project Proposed for Roundabout

By Valerie Cury
Packie Crown of Bowman Consulting, on May 16 at a meeting at the Carver Center, discussed a proposal to rezone and develop property at the southeast corner of Purcellville’s roundabout, across from the Catoctin Corner development currently underway.  The developer’s application to rezone the property in question – the O’Toole property – would require a Comprehensive Plan amendment and a zoning amendment.  It is also part of Purcellville’s Historic Corridor Overlay District and is located at a gateway to the town. … Continue Reading

Geese on Main Street, with Data Centers at Their Heels

By Andrea Gaines
Board of Supervisors Chair Phyllis Randall (D-At-Large) delivered a crisp, 35-minute State of the County speech on May 24. The message? Loudoun County had arrived at a very modern place in its 260-year history, and now faces not just the question of how to preserve the things that have sustained it so successfully, but how to meet the distinctly urban and suburban challenges demanding answers now, in real time. … Continue Reading

April 11 Town Council Meeting

May 3, 2017 Committees at a Glance, Government, News Comments Off on April 11 Town Council Meeting

“It is my hope that all $300,000 will go to servicing the Wastewater debt. This is exactly the kind of effort we should be pursuing to keep the water and sewer rates low.”
– Council Member Nedim Ogelman

– By Valerie Cury

The Purcellville Town Council discussed a variety of topics at its April 11 meeting, including taxes and revenues from property sales.

No Tax Increases
The Purcellville Town Council set the property tax rate of $0.22 (rate is per $100 of assessed value) for the FY18 budget, keeping the rate the same as last year. There was likewise no change in the Fireman’s Field Service Tax District rate, as well as the personal property tax for vehicles, and for the business tax. … Continue Reading

Town Manager Retires Amid Controversy

May 3, 2017 Government, News Comments Off on Town Manager Retires Amid Controversy

– By Valerie Cury
At the April 25 Purcellville Town Council Meeting, Robert W. Lohr, Jr., who has served as Town Manager for nearly 25 years, announced his retirement, effective July 1, 2017. His letter to the Council stated, “It has been an honor and privilege to serve the wonderful Town of Purcellville since 1993 but I now need to explore the next chapter in my life so I am announcing my retirement …” He continued, “I can assure you that this has been one of my family’s toughest decisions in our lives, but I am blessed with a loving wife and children that have encouraged me to take this leap of faith into the next chapter of my life, much like I did when I came here almost 25 years ago.” … Continue Reading

Loudoun Board Of Supervisors Adopts FY 2018 Budget; Lowers Tax Rate By Two Cents

April 6, 2017 Government, Loudoun County, News Comments Off on Loudoun Board Of Supervisors Adopts FY 2018 Budget; Lowers Tax Rate By Two Cents

The Loudoun County Board of Supervisors has approved a budget totaling approximately $2.5 billion in total appropriations for the general county government and school system for Fiscal Year (FY) 2018.  The adopted budget includes a real property tax rate of $1.125 per $100 in assessed value, two cents lower than the current tax rate. The personal property tax rate remains unchanged at $4.20 per $100. The budget includes a local transfer to Loudoun County Public Schools (LCPS) of $747.9 million, which is a 7.7 percent increase in local tax funding over FY 2017 and represents 99.3 percent of the School Board’s budget request.

… Continue Reading

Purcellville Encourages Public Input Re Budget Process

April 5, 2017 Government, News Comments Off on Purcellville Encourages Public Input Re Budget Process

“The way I will be approaching this is, ?I will not stick to the status quo … ?My goal is to be disruptive, be different.”? – Mayor Kwasi Fraser

On March 22 Town Manager Rob Lohr presented his proposed FY 2018 budget to the Purcellville Town Council. The Council seeks public input, ideas, and recommendations on the document. Members of the public can access it and all related details at www.purcellvilleva.gov/budget, including an Excel spreadsheet that allows users to make proposed edits to the budget and see how that impacts the tax rate. Said Council Member Nedim Ogelman, “This is what the Town Council is using, we want you to use it also.” Council Member Kelli Grim said that Town Council needs to make sure that the Town’s residents have full access to this document that shows Council proposals as well as citizen input. … Continue Reading

March 28 Purcellville Town Council Work Session

From Everyday Business To Addressing Threats

“When someone is alleged to have said, and it was heard by witnesses, they want to punch you in the face, whether it’s me – because it was, or even if it were someone else – I am concerned.” – Council Member Kelli Grim

– By Valerie Cury

On Veterans: Mayor Kwasi Fraser met with Sen. Dick Black (R-13) and members of the veterans’ community on March 11. Together, they are looking at the possibility of opening a veterans’ clinic in Purcellville. “The opportunity is here for a clinic because the nearest clinic is about 30 miles away; so we might have an opportunity to bring a veteran clinic into the Town of Purcellville,” said Fraser. … Continue Reading

March 14 Town Council Meeting: Nitty-Gritty Issues Big and Small

April 5, 2017 Committees at a Glance, Government, News Comments Off on March 14 Town Council Meeting: Nitty-Gritty Issues Big and Small

The Purcellville Town Council meets on the second and fourth Tuesday of each month at 7:00 p.m. at the Town Hall. Items discussed at the Council’s March 14 meeting included:

Revenue From Sale Of Town Property: The revenue from the sale of Mary’s House of Hope, located at 781 South 20th Street, is $300,000. Initiating a discussion of what to do with these funds, Council Member Nedim Ogelman said: “As we think about our debt and think about the tax burden on our citizens, particularly on water and sewer rates … it would very much interest me to have the revenue … from the sale of that property go towards paying off the debt [and] easing any immediate rate increases on sewer and water.” Council Member Kelli Grim echoed this, saying there is “merit in a portion of that money going to wastewater …” and supporting Ogelman’s desire to pursue anything that will ease the tax burden on the citizens, since the money from the sale of the property is a net profit. Mayor Kwasi Fraser said he would like to see this as an exercise in risk management. “If possible, we can see if we were going to take 100 percent, 80 percent, or 50 percent out of what would be the risk, and that will help us to make an informed decision.” … Continue Reading

Purcellville Emergency Meeting Postponed to March 10

At the end of the business day on Monday, March 6, Purcellville Mayor Kwasi Fraser called for an emergency meeting for 7:00 p.m. the same evening. The subject given for the meeting was to discuss an alleged threat a Town government employee made against a Town Council Member.

A majority vote is needed to proceed in a closed session meeting. However, in this case, the Town Council voted 4-3 against going into executive session. Council Members Doug McCollum, Ryan Cool, Nedim Ogelman and Chris Bledsoe voted against going into the closed session, and Mayor Fraser, Vice-Mayor Karen Jimmerson and Council Member Kelli Grim voted for the motion. The Council then voted unanimously to reschedule the meeting for Friday March 10, 7:00 p.m. … Continue Reading

Strategy Session Tug of War

March 8, 2017 Committees at a Glance, Government, News Comments Off on Strategy Session Tug of War

Grim pointed out that the residential portion of Vineyard Square (the John Chapman and Mark Nelis development on 21st Street) is 40 condos. “So we lost 39 availabilities, and that falls back to policy… that is 39 availabilities that we have lost. And that is approximately $2 million.”
– Council Member Kelli Grim

On February 22, the Purcellville Town Council held a second Special Financial Strategy Session meeting with their two consultants, David Rose of Davenport, and Eric Callocchia of Municipal and Financial Services Group. During the previous meeting, the Council asked the consultants to return with alternative scenarios, given the broad agreement that growth will not reduce the debt and utility rate burden. … Continue Reading

Loudoun County Administrator Presents Proposed Budget for Fiscal 2018

February 17, 2017 Government, News Comments Off on Loudoun County Administrator Presents Proposed Budget for Fiscal 2018

Loudoun County Administrator Tim Hemstreet has presented a proposed budget for the Loudoun County government for Fiscal 2018 (FY 2018) to the Board of Supervisors, which begins July 1, 2017. The budget totals $2.5 billion in appropriations for the county government and school system. 
 
The proposed budget is based on Board of Supervisors guidance to prepare a budget at the estimated equalized real property tax rate and to present requests for resources included in the budget in order of priority for the organization. The proposed budget was prepared at the equalized real property tax rate of $1.135. It includes prioritized requests that accomplish both the maintenance of existing service levels as well as the enhancement of some existing service levels. … Continue Reading


 

 

 

 

Columns

Public Input June 6, 2017

Public input June 6, 2017 “We must, incidentally, make it clear from the beginning that if a thing is not science, it is not necessarily bad. For example, love is not a science. So, if something is said not to …

Anatomy of a Sunflower

By Andrea Gaines Nothing is as simple and summery as that big yellow ray of light known as the sunflower. These not-so-bashful beauties enter the world from seeds we’ve sown intentionally, or from seeds tossed out as happy, uneaten castaways …

Parental Help Needed

Dr. Mike, My husband and I are planning to hold our son back to repeat eighth grade. He plays on a travel sports team, and the extra year would give him an advantage for high school. My sister did it …

Misconceptions about 529 Plans

Just like the kids you’re saving college funds for, 529 plans are often misunderstood. Read on to learn 529 plans are more flexible than you may think. They can be set up by anyone, for anyone, and used for a …

Transforming Scars – Engendering Hope

By Samuel Moore-Sobel The woman’s voice on the other end of the line is warm and inviting, speaking softly in crisp tones, with great excitement, and at a hurried pace. Her words are eloquent and profound. Furiously I type, trying …

Addicted

By Mary Rose Lunde When most people think of addictions, they choose the more well-known types, such as alcohol or drugs. But there are other addictions that people don’t always want to talk about. These can include: screen time, video …

Just Like Nothing (Else) on Earth: Cooksville Road

By Tim Jon You see – there’s this bell: A church bell, suspended inside a little white tower atop the old Mount Olive Baptist church building – that you can see for just a few split-seconds as you make your …

Student News

Congratulations, Class of 2016

6 Jul 2016

Woodgrove High School’s Class Of 2016 Graduation – By Amanda Clark On June 16, Woodgrove’s Class of 2016 was the 5th graduating class to walk the stage and accept their diploma. The ceremony was filled with anticipation as the chorus, …

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Buckland Earns Degree In Medicine

6 Jul 2016

Molly Buckland, D.O., graduated from the West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine with a degree of Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine on May 28. While at WVSOM, Dr. Buckland received the Dr. Roland P. Sharp President’s Award and the James R. …

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Adams Promoted To Lieutenant

6 Jul 2016

Lt. James Adams, from Sterling and a Potomac Falls Halls Graduate, earned the promotion to the rank of Lieutenant. Adams is a Navy Week and Executive Outreach Planner for the Navy Office of Community Outreach in Millington, Tennessee. U.S. Navy …

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Calendar

June 2017
Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
May 29, 2017

Coming Up Spring

Coming Up Spring
May 30, 2017

Coming Up Spring

Coming Up Spring
May 31, 2017

Coming Up Spring

Coming Up Spring
June 1, 2017 June 2, 2017

First Friday at the Winery

First Friday at the Winery

TGIF@North Gate Vineyard with Maddy Curtis Live

TGIF@North Gate Vineyard with Maddy Curtis Live
June 3, 2017

CA$H Bingo

CA$H Bingo

Moon Music Live at North Gate Vineyard

Moon Music Live at North Gate Vineyard

Notaviva Vineyards - Bluegrass Jam - FREE event

Notaviva Vineyards - Bluegrass Jam - FREE event
June 4, 2017

OPEN HOUSE EXTRAVAGANZA

OPEN HOUSE EXTRAVAGANZA
June 5, 2017 June 6, 2017 June 7, 2017

Beale Street Puppets: Teddy Bear Circus

Beale Street Puppets: Teddy Bear Circus
June 8, 2017 June 9, 2017

CA$H Bingo

CA$H Bingo
June 10, 2017

20th Annual Cajun Festival

20th Annual Cajun Festival

Dear Creek Live at North Gate Vineyard

Dear Creek Live at North Gate Vineyard

Healing Service

Healing Service
June 11, 2017

Come Paint with Us

Come Paint with Us
June 12, 2017 June 13, 2017 June 14, 2017 June 15, 2017 June 16, 2017 June 17, 2017

CA$H Bingo

CA$H Bingo

Pete Lapp Live at north Gate Vineyard

Pete Lapp Live at north Gate Vineyard
June 18, 2017
June 19, 2017 June 20, 2017 June 21, 2017 June 22, 2017 June 23, 2017

CA$H Bingo

CA$H Bingo
June 24, 2017

THE PICKWICK PLAYERS: You Can’t Take It With You

THE PICKWICK PLAYERS: You Can’t Take It With You

Acoustic Soul Live at north Gate Vineyard

Acoustic Soul Live at north Gate Vineyard

THE PICKWICK PLAYERS: You Can’t Take It With You

THE PICKWICK PLAYERS: You Can’t Take It With You
June 25, 2017
June 26, 2017 June 27, 2017 June 28, 2017

MAIN STREET THEATER PRODUCTIONS: Disney’s The Jungle Book Kids

MAIN STREET THEATER PRODUCTIONS: Disney’s The Jungle Book Kids

MAIN STREET THEATER PRODUCTIONS: Disney’s The Jungle Book Kids

MAIN STREET THEATER PRODUCTIONS: Disney’s The Jungle Book Kids

MAIN STREET THEATER PRODUCTIONS: Disney’s The Jungle Book Kids

MAIN STREET THEATER PRODUCTIONS: Disney’s The Jungle Book Kids
June 29, 2017

MAIN STREET THEATER PRODUCTIONS: Disney’s The Jungle Book Kids

MAIN STREET THEATER PRODUCTIONS: Disney’s The Jungle Book Kids
June 30, 2017

MAIN STREET THEATER PRODUCTIONS: Disney’s The Jungle Book Kids

MAIN STREET THEATER PRODUCTIONS: Disney’s The Jungle Book Kids
July 1, 2017

CA$H Bingo

CA$H Bingo

Willie White Live at North Gate Vineyard

Willie White Live at North Gate Vineyard

Notaviva Vineyards - Bluegrass Jam - FREE event

Notaviva Vineyards - Bluegrass Jam - FREE event
July 2, 2017

Quentin Walston Live at North Gate Vineyard

Quentin Walston Live at North Gate Vineyard
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Lifestyle

Music with a Cause June Concert: Bud’s Collective

31 May 2017

The Music with a Cause Concert celebrates the culmination of its first year with a concert to be held at Otium Cellars at 5:30 p.m. on Sunday, June 4. Bud’s Collective is a powerful trio of pickers from the hills of West Virginia. The evening will also feature an auction of a piece from David Norton Pottery. Norton is an …

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Loudoun Library Card Design Contest Has Begun

31 May 2017

Loudoun artists are invited to submit designs for Loudoun County Public Library’s Second Annual Library Card Design Contest, which began May 22. A panel of judges from the Loudoun County Art Advisory Committee will choose three finalists based on creativity, originality, and message. Artwork or photography submitted should reflect the spirit of Loudoun and the work of Loudoun County Public …

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Loudoun Art Advisory Committee – Call for Artists

31 May 2017

All Loudoun County artists are invited to submit original photographs for the 2017 Loudoun County Art Advisory Committee show “Loudoun’s Evolving Landscape: At-Risk Art Project.” The photographs, which may be in color or black and white, will be exhibited in Gallery One on the first floor of the Loudoun County Government Center, 1 Harrison Street, S.E. in Leesburg, from September …

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Editorial

Priscilla Nabs Plum Planning Commission Post

Appointment Shocks Many On January 3 Supervisor Tony R. Buffington Jr. (R-Blue Ridge) nominated Tom Priscilla for the Loudoun County Planning Commission to represent the Blue Ridge District. Priscilla was …

Op-ed

Opinion: Terrorism, Debt, and China: Oh My!

– By Nick Reid world can be a very dangerous place sometimes, especially for a nation state such as the United States. Although danger is always present, the number and …

Metro Money Mess Pushing West

– By Delegate Dave LaRock (R-33rd) A local paper recently quoted Loudoun Board Chair Phyllis Randall as saying that in her observation “some of the concerns raised by the people …

Dear Editor

A Winner of a Budget

On May 23, Mayor Kwasi Fraser and the Purcellville Town Council voted to finalize the FY18 budget on behalf of our taxpayers. As an elected government, this is the greatest responsibility that we have. We also have the unlimited ability …

Supports Walbridge

I am proud to endorse and express my full support for Tia Walbridge to represent the 33rd District in Richmond.  As a current Town Council member in Purcellville, I understand the concerns of Purcellville and western Loudoun citizens and I …

View From the Ridge

Envision Loudoun – Bold Action Versus Business-As-Usual

Everyone is talking about it. “Envision Loudoun,” our local government’s effort to reach out to the public for advice on how to rewrite and update the County’s Comprehensive Plan. Officials …

Around Virginia

Tuesday, June 13 – Primary Elections Voting Information

A Primary Election for both parties is scheduled on June 13. Voters will choose a candidate for the Republican Party for the offices of Governor and Lieutenant Governor. For the Democratic Party voters will choose a candidate for the offices of Governor, Lieutenant Governor and House of Delegates for the 33 …

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Cultivate Innovation-Driven Solutions

By Delegate Dave LaRock (R-33) Schools are letting out for summer break and many families are celebrating graduations and making plans for college. Few would disagree with the importance of quality affordable education. While it may not be prominent in the conversations, our state and local governments play key roles …

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Transportation: Problem Solving and Promises Kept

– By Delegate Dave LaRock (R-33) Four years ago I came before the voters of the 33rd District, challenging the status quo transportation funding policies that sent our taxes to other parts of the state while leaving us sitting in traffic. I called out projects like the Dulles Rail Project, …

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Sports

Purcellville Cannons: Talent, Talent and More Talent

31 May 2017

By Andrea Gaines Cannons home opener vs. the Winchester Royals at Fireman’s Field, Friday, June 3. At their 2017 home opener, the Los Angeles Dodgers absolutely trounced the San Diego Padres. Said one sports commentator: “Their opening-day bats were so special … it was easy to forget the Dodgers also …

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WLVBC U14 Boys Volleyball Wins WLVBC Invitational

3 May 2017

The Western Loudoun Volleyball Club’s U14 Boys team won the inaugural WLVBC Invitational Tournament held Saturday, April 15 at Foxcroft School.  The team went 4-0 on the day, winning first place against WLVBC U15 boys team in a three-set match 25-19, 22-25 and 15-11. The team reached the Gold Bracket …

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