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The Land We Story

May 2, 2012 Editorial, Opinion 1 comment

Despite the fact that Virginia recognizes the ownership of land as a possession that by its nature, is very different from all other possessions, eminent domain abuse is rampant throughout the state. This November the citizens have a chance to curtail some of the worst abuses, which are those that have strayed most liberally from the Constitution. The taking of property, etc.

The taking of property is now routinely done for no other reason than to increase the revenues of a town. This is precisely what Purcellville Mayor Bob Lazaro said he wanted to do when he decided to annex three properties to the east of the town. However, that is one of many prohibitions in the Virginia Code. Any lawyer will tell you that most of these prohibitions are ignored with complete impunity. We are constantly being told we are a nation of laws, but it appears some laws are more “equal” than others. … Continue Reading

Reform the Government Reform Commission

May 2, 2012 Editorial, Opinion Comments Off on Reform the Government Reform Commission

By Malcolm F. Baldwin

Our Board of Supervisors established the Government Reform Commission (GRC) at its first meeting last January, as promised during its election campaign. Opting against broad-ranging bi-partisan participation, the Board appointed an all-Republican commission drawn from developer and other business interests, with no apparent experience in local government to apply to the effort of reforming ours. The Commission’s work assumes the business priorities of the Board. … Continue Reading

Equalized Real Estate Tax But Car Tax Increase Maintained

May 2, 2012 Editorial, Opinion Comments Off on Equalized Real Estate Tax But Car Tax Increase Maintained

The Purcellville Town Council has set the real estate tax rate at 22.5 cents per $100 assessed valuation. This is a reduction in the tax rate of one half cent but amounts to an equalized tax rate.

What constitutes an equalized tax rate? There are two variables in computing the tax on a property: The assessed valuation and the tax rate. Loudoun County controls the assessment for all property in the county and annually reassesses every property in the county. This data is then passed to all incorporated towns within the county for property within the respective town’s boundaries. … Continue Reading

Did You Know You Are Building a New Hotel?

April 4, 2012 Editorial, Opinion 9 comments

It seems like Loudoun County lives in a bubble. While Detroit’s much-reduced population struggles to get back a sense of community, and is building gardens where there were once houses, Loudoun continues to “pave over,” building office buildings, big box stores and taxpayer-funded hotels. Although Loudoun has always been a sweet place for developers to build, it just got a whole lot sweeter. … Continue Reading

“But, it was just my ‘magination … running away with me … ”

March 7, 2012 Editorial, Opinion Comments Off on “But, it was just my ‘magination … running away with me … ”

Purcellville Mayor Bob Lazaro is still using the sound bite that he has “taken 1,000 residential homes off Purcellville’s planning map,” and he did so again at the Purcellville/County Joint Committee meeting on February 21 when he said that Purcellville does not want anymore residential housing. However, in reality, residential use is still being recommended for undeveloped land within the Comprehensive Plan, which is being reviewed by the Planning Commission.

But, as the song goes … “it’s just his ‘magination … ” … Continue Reading

Is Loudoun About To Lose Its Highly Ranked School System?

March 7, 2012 Editorial, Opinion 1 comment

At its first meeting for the term, the Board of Supervisors instructed the County Administrator to prepare a draft FY2013 budget with two options: A zero percent increase in the average homeowner’s tax bill option and a minus five percent option. The Board also directed that two-thirds of the budget would fund the schools and one-third the County government.

The instructions came on a motion by Chairman York, which passed unanimously with no debate and no questions to County staff on the possible conse-quences. This raises two questions: 1) was the guidance ideologically, rather than fact-based; and 2) are the Supervisors communicating in private – bringing what are, in essence, done deals to the table. … Continue Reading

Purcellville’s Multi-Million Dollar Vote for Less Transparency

February 2, 2012 Editorial, Opinion 1 comment

Should residents of Purcellville enjoy the rights to transparency and open government in the Code of Virginia? This paper says, YES.
For over one year now, there has been a movement, initiated by local resident and businesses owner Kelli Grim to request that Purcellville’s Mayor and Town Council adopt what many localities, including Loudoun County have in place with respect to “Real Parties of Interest Disclosure.” … Continue Reading

Time For a Code of Ethics

February 2, 2012 Editorial, Opinion Comments Off on Time For a Code of Ethics

Loudoun County’s previous Board of Supervisors, whose term ended on December 31, 2011 adopted a formal Code of Ethics, along with a separate Standards of Conduct. All members of that Board, except Supervisor DelGaudio (R-Sterling District), signed a pledge to conduct themselves in accordance with the provisions of these two documents. The need for a Code of Ethics was a direct result of the behavior of some members of the 2004 Board, who finished their terms with a cloud of suspicion hanging over their heads. … Continue Reading

Town Hall Shines – But at what Cost?

January 5, 2012 Editorial, Opinion Comments Off on Town Hall Shines – But at what Cost?

So … at long last the major kitchen renovation you’d been planning for years is complete.

Dealing with the contractor was difficult, the cabinets still don’t close exactly right and your costs were much higher than originally estimated.

But, in the end, you decided to cut your losses and just get the thing finished! … Continue Reading

What Might Be Coming to Loudoun?

January 5, 2012 Editorial, Opinion Comments Off on What Might Be Coming to Loudoun?

By Bob Ohneiser

The new year is a good time for prog-nostications. I hope the following does not occur but if it does Loudoun may need to finally stop its residential growth. Here is one scenario to consider:

  1. Loudoun commits to metro thereby encumbering a few hundred million of capital that would otherwise be available to work down the almost $1 billion in backlogged Loudoun County Public Schools (LCPS) projects. … Continue Reading

More Taxes? … Really?

December 1, 2011 Editorial, Opinion Comments Off on More Taxes? … Really?

Over the years, various candidates for Purcellville Mayor have argued against the imposition of the dreaded BPOL Tax (Business Professional Occupational License Tax). Others have argued that if the Town of Purcellville didn’t impose the tax … the County would.

However, according to an employee at the County Commissioner of the Revenue’s office, it is the choice of the town to impose this tax (and Purcellville takes full advantage of this). Purcellville now imposes a tax of 17 cents per hundred dollars of gross profits on most businesses in Town, except for building contractors who pay 14 cents per hundred. State Code gives towns the right to impose a business tax but it does not compel them to do so. And, a town must pass a local ordinance before it can impose this tax. … Continue Reading

Zoning … and the Power to Destroy

November 2, 2011 Editorial, Opinion Comments Off on Zoning … and the Power to Destroy

By Kelli Grim

We have often heard that the power to tax is the power to destroy. The same can be said of zoning.

Zoning controls what a particular piece of land can be used for and how intense that use can be. Residential use versus commercial use, for example … one house per acre versus 10 houses per acre … a high rise commercial development versus a simple commercial strip.

Zoning influences the entire direction and quality of life of any town, and has destroyed/made generic the original downtowns of many. Zoning and annexation are one of the most powerful tools that towns, cities and counties have, along with condemnation of land. More than one politician has climbed his way up the ladder by annexing and up zoning properties (making their use more intense and profitable for the developer). This is where the money and influence are, and this is where politicians get their war chests for political office. … Continue Reading

Do You Know Where Your Candidate’s Money Is Coming From?

November 2, 2011 Editorial, Opinion 2 comments

Everybody who donates money or in kind services to a candidate running for office has a reason.

Many small donations are from average citizens who always vote for the party the candidate represents or believe in the principles the candidate espouses. Then there are the donors that usually contribute larger sums because they expect something in return for their contribution when the candidate is elected.

Fortunately, because of campaign finance laws in Virginia, you can go on line and easily find out how much was contributed by an individual or corporation to a particular candidate*. … Continue Reading


 

 

 

 

Columns

Charles Murray’s Middlebury Melee

“Earthrise”, photo taken from Apollo 8 by Bill Anders on Christmas Eve, December 24, 1968. By Tony Noerpel On March 2, 2017, the appearance of Charles Murray at Middlebury College in Vermont caused a small riot [1]. The media blamed …

Earth System and Paleoclimate Change

In a new paper Owen Gaffney and Will Steffen [1], present a high order abstraction of the Earth System, E, in the form This is fine as an abstraction and shows the subsystems which impact the Earth System. The authors …

Famous Estate Blunders and How To Avoid Them

These celebrities’ tales are a strong reminder to review your estate plan before it’s too late. There’s a calm comfort that comes with estate planning: a sense that your family will be taken care of after you pass away (hopefully …

Fidget Gear, Good or Bad?

What do you think about the new fidget cubes and fidget spinners, and do they really help kids with ADHD? They’re making their way around our neighborhood, but I couldn’t find any good studies out there on either of the …

A Community Together: The Ten-Year Remembrance of 4/16/2007

Time moves forward, whether we are ready to move on or not. It’s been ten years since the massacre that shocked America. I’m talking about the event that started a standard of condolences from the president, tears and prayers from …

Soul Lost in Translation

“Greed, for lack of a better word, is good,” Gordon Gekko (Michael Douglas) tells us in the 1987 movie Wall Street. The newly released book, Black Edge: Inside Information, Dirty Money, and the Quest to Bring Down the Most Wanted …

Just Like Nothing (Else) on Earth: North Fork Road

It’s difficult to be in a hurry when all the surrounding geography seems to encourage thoughtful, relaxing contemplation – maybe even a meditative cat nap thrown in for good measure; now – turn your TV off and take the music …

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

April 2017
Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
March 27, 2017 March 28, 2017 March 29, 2017 March 30, 2017 March 31, 2017 April 1, 2017

CA$H Bingo

CA$H Bingo

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”

Nebbiolo Vertical Tasting

Nebbiolo Vertical Tasting

Notaviva Vineyards - Bluegrass Jam - FREE event

Notaviva Vineyards - Bluegrass Jam - FREE event

Old Time Country Ham and Turkey Dinner

Old Time Country Ham and Turkey Dinner
April 2, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”

GALLERY COFFEEHOUSE: Readers Theater, “One Slight Hitch”

GALLERY COFFEEHOUSE: Readers Theater, “One Slight Hitch”
April 3, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”
April 4, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”
April 5, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”
April 6, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”
April 7, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”

First Friday at the Winery

First Friday at the Winery
April 8, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”

Cherry Blossom Celebration

Cherry Blossom Celebration

Come Paint with Us! Cherry Blossom

Come Paint with Us! Cherry Blossom

Meet the Artist - Robert Merhaut

Meet the Artist - Robert Merhaut

Healing Service

Healing Service

North Gate Vineyard presents a Vertical Tasting

North Gate Vineyard presents a Vertical Tasting
April 9, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”

SPRING AWAKENS: DECORATED EGG AUCTION

SPRING AWAKENS: DECORATED EGG AUCTION

GALLERY COFFEEHOUSE: Writers’ Night Out

GALLERY COFFEEHOUSE: Writers’ Night Out
April 10, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”
April 11, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”
April 12, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”
April 13, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”
April 14, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”

CA$H Bingo

CA$H Bingo

LAST HAM STANDING COMEDY IMPROV

LAST HAM STANDING COMEDY IMPROV
April 15, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”

CA$H Bingo

CA$H Bingo

Easter at the Park

Easter at the Park

Easter Extravaganza

Easter Extravaganza
April 16, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”

Easter Sunrise Service

Easter Sunrise Service
April 17, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”
April 18, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”
April 19, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”
April 20, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”
April 21, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”

Jules & The Hammer Band with Teddy Chipouras

Jules & The Hammer Band with Teddy Chipouras
April 22, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”

20th Anniversary Celebration & Grand Re-Opening

20th Anniversary Celebration & Grand Re-Opening

Celebrate Earth Day at North Gate Vineyard

Celebrate Earth Day at North Gate Vineyard

Andrew McKnight & Beyond Borders

Andrew McKnight & Beyond Borders
April 23, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”

Franklin Park Big Band is Coming to Franklin Park Arts Center

Franklin Park Big Band is Coming to Franklin Park Arts Center

Jammin' at James

Jammin' at James
April 24, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”
April 25, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”
April 26, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”
April 27, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”
April 28, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”

April Fourth Friday

April Fourth Friday

CA$H Bingo

CA$H Bingo
April 29, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”

2017 Virginia Touch-A-Truck

2017 Virginia Touch-A-Truck

Live Music: Dear Creek

Live Music: Dear Creek

Music With a Cause - The Loudoun Chorale

Music With a Cause - The Loudoun Chorale
April 30, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”
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Recent Comments

  • SS Teacher on Fidget Gear, Good or Bad?: The fidget spinner and the fidget cube are very different. The fidget spinner is a disease to the classroom. It's...
  • Jimmy Hill on March 28 Purcellville Town Council Work Session: We have 2 playground areas within a few hundred yards of the proposed one from the article. LVCC has two...
  • Susan T. on ZOAM 2016-0014: Not exactly. ZOAM 2016-0014 allows for a maximum density of no less than 4 residential dwelling units per acre. ...
  • Blue Ridge District Supervisor on ZOAM 2016-0014: Amazing! The Board of Supervisors identifies and takes immediate action to close a loophole whereby unlimited by-right residential development will...
  • Martha Polkey on Envision Loudoun – Bold Action Versus Business-As-Usual: But concisely: Be careful of Bold Action. It may not be the ones you want.

Lifestyle

Welcome Home to this Colonial in Lovettsville

6 Apr 2017

By Hannah Hager All of us seek to put down roots in ?a pleasant, safe and prosperous area, and you’ll find as much within this home in the Dutchman’s Creek neighborhood in Lovettsville. Today, Lovettsville has all the trappings of an all-American hometown – a pizzeria downtown, excellent schools and busy streets that settle into quiet nights. Its claim to …

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Keep Loudoun Beautiful

5 Apr 2017

Greater Lovettsville Area Volunteers Needed The Keep Loudoun Beautiful spring clean-up takes place the entire month of April and greater Lovettsville needs volunteers. Bags, vests, gloves and grabbers are available at the Lovettsville Community Center during normal business hours, Monday through Friday.  Contact Lovettsville area leader, Laura Lieberman, for details and to coordinate pick-up  locations:  laura.long.lieberman@gmail.com.

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Take Me To the Garden Show

5 Apr 2017

The 27th Annual Leesburg Flower & Garden Festival comes to town Saturday, April 22 from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., and Sunday, April 23 from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. The award-winning event, estimated to attract 40,000 visitors over the two days, gets better and better every year. And, that’s not just the vendors and organizers talking; that’s the truth, …

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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

Why Williams Gap Road Should Not Be Paved

Today, most residents of Loudoun County know nothing about Williams Gap, even those living on Williams Gap Road (Route 711). Knowing who “Williams” was, why a gap in the Blue …

Vote No To the Minor Special Exception

We are a group of Loudoun County citizens who will be adversely affected if the board grants a special exception for the Catesby Farm property at your upcoming meeting. You …

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

Rep. Comstock Returns from Bipartisan Congressional Delegation to Egypt, Jordan, and Lebanon

Representative Barbara Comstock (R-VA) released the following statement after returning from a bipartisan Congressional Delegation visit to Egypt, Jordan, and Lebanon: “As believers around the world observed Holy Week, I appreciated the opportunity to visit and hear from those who serve our fellow man – our military men and women …

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Governor McAuliffe Announces Growth in Solar Industry-Related Jobs

Governor Terry McAuliffe announced that Virginia is one of the fastest growing solar job markets in the country. In the Solar Foundation’s National Solar Jobs Census 2016, Virginia is 2nd in the Southeast and tied with Utah for 9th in the U.S. for year-over-year solar job growth. The Commonwealth is ranked …

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McAuliffe Vetoes LaRock’s Public Assistance Eligibility Legislation  

On March 28, Governor Terry McAuliffe vetoed Del. Dave LaRock’s (R-33) House Bill 2092, which would have required any applicant for public assistance to undergo a full review of death records, incarceration status, employment status, lottery winnings, and all income. Recently, an Arlington woman was arrested on four counts of welfare fraud for …

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Sports

Woodgrove Training for Spring Track

9 Apr 2017

Woodgrove students get ready for the upcoming Spring track season. Photos courtesy of Robert Nelson

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Western Loudoun Volleyball Summer Camp Launched

6 Apr 2017

Western Loudoun Volleyball Club will be hosting its first ever summer camp June 26-29 at Foxcroft School in Middleburg.  The coed, four-day camp will run from 9-5 each day and feature advanced skills training, game strategy and mental approaches to the game.  The program will be managed by WLVBC’s Technical …

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