Another Day, Another Thrashing for Corey Stewart

Since Prince William County Board Chairman Corey Stewart floated the idea of eliminating the cap on real estate tax increases, not a day has gone by without a well-deserved thrashing from his one-time supporters. Here is today’s…

Chairman Stewart: 

In 2006 you strongly opposed Brentswood (the predecessor of the pending Stone Haven and Prince William Station residential developments.)  You pointed out then and for a year or so afterward that “when we approve large developments, we are essentially approving a tax increase” and that the county’s housing boom has “hurt the average person”.  (See: attachment and  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0f8XDSKrNzs).  BUT NOT LONG THEREAFTER YOU REVERSED COURSE 180 DEGREES AND BEGAN RELENTLESSLY CHAMPIONING RESIDENTIAL DEVELOPER CAUSES, including Avendale and Stone Haven, as well as a major change in direction beginning 2009-10 by the Board of County Supervisors (BOCS) on land use that seemed to allow development virtually “anywhere, anytime” and allowed fast-tracked approval of developer land use requests.  (See: http://pwcbg.org/SupervisorPositions.html#FastTracking)

You also talked in 2007 about how you’d been “socking it to the development community.”  BUT NOT LONG THEREAFTER YOU BEGAN AGGRESSIVELY SEEKING DEVELOPER MONEY.  (See:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0f8XDSKrNzs).  At last count you’d received $759,841 from them.  (See: http://vpap.org).

AND NOW, per the 11 December 2014 InsideNova report below, YOU NOT ONLY HAVE APPARENTLY LOST INTEREST IN RESTRAINING TAX RATES, BUT ARE BLAMING COUNTY BUDGET SHORTFALLS, PARTICULARLY SCHOOL SHORTFALLS, ON PW COUNTY TAXPAYERS’ RELUCTANCE (AND INABILITY IN MANY CASES) TO PAY HIGHER TAXES.  In so doing, you have truly retreated to one of the last refuges of political scoundrels:  If only the taxpayers were more generous and the government had more and more money, everything would be so much better — and we wouldn’t have overcrowded schools, etc.  Apparently, taxpayers paying 30-40% of their income in federal, state, and local taxes and fees is not enough for you.  I’m sure it’s very frustrating to you that taxpayers are hesitant to give you more money so you can:  cover up your own policy mistakes of the last 5-6 years, keep giving indirect subsidies to residential developers, and in turn receive more and more campaign funding from developers to further your faltering statewide political ambitions.

It’s interesting that in recent years you have not publicly made mention, in fact have assiduously avoided any mention of the main reason for overcrowded public schools (and roads, for that matter):  consistently tax-negative residential development, caused by you and your predecessors’ pro-residential developer policies that simultaneously overcrowd and underfund both schools and roads and neglect tax-positive commercial development.  (For more info, see:  http://pwcbg.org/SupervisorPositions.html#Proffers and http://pwcbg.org/MediaReportsOnBalancedGrowth.html#Reports .)  

Note that early next year Prince William Citizens for Balanced Growth (PWCBG) plans to release updated 2015 budget figures on tax-negative residential development.  While a few numbers will change, we expect that the basic story will remain more or less unchanged:  The breakeven value of new houses (where taxes received from the house equal the cost of government services incurred by the house) has been about $450,000, while the average new house sells for about $330,000.  That leaves a tax gap of $120,000 multiplied by the current tax rate of 1.25%, meaning that on average each new house built has been $1,400-$1,500 tax negative per year.  While tax rates change and it looks like the average house is selling for a bit more now (though that trend could reverse if the percentage of townhouses in new housing rises), the breakeven value has also risen.  So we expect that the tax gap will remain similar, likely resulting in at least a $1,200 tax deficit per house per year. 

Highly overvalued developer proffers of empty and often worthless land do not help much in reversing the tax-negative trend.  (See Word attachment above.)

In other words, OVERALL, RESIDENTIAL DEVELOPMENT IN PRINCE WILLIAM COUNTY IS OVERWHELMINGLY TAX-NEGATIVE, AND THAT REALITY DOES GREAT HARM TO TAXPAYERS, SCHOOLS, ROADS, QUALITY OF LIFE, AND THE VALUE OF EXISTING HOMES.  Let me remind you that this is the very point that PWCBG has been making to you and the rest of the Board of County Supervisors for almost nine years now.   Surely you could not have failed to hear us all those countless times during that period when we’ve spoken to you directly in person at BOCS meetings or, along with hundreds of citizens, sent e-mails to you reminding you over and over again of all this.  Or perhaps, more to the point, YOUR DESPERATE PLEA BELOW FOR HIGHER TAXES CONCEDES PWCBG’S POINT, IN A BACKHANDED, PERVERSE WAY.

Compounding folly on top of folly, county officials such as you continue to advocate more and more of this tax-negative, taxpayer-subsidized housing — even though there are still ~30,000 approved-but-not-yet-built houses and no housing shortages in the county.

Nor have you or the School Board mentioned the $37-38 million dollars diverted to the school board’s Edward L. Kelly Leadership Center and other frills that were funded even before the basic needs of schools were met.

Your political “principles” change so quickly and so radically that you’re giving me political whiplash.  Let’s hope that your next change is either in the right political direction once and for all or to the political exits.

Ralph Stephenson
Prince William Citizens for Balanced Growth

John Gray Calls Out Corey Stewart’s “Survey His Office Conducted For Political Purposes”

John Gray, a past candidate for Prince Willaim County Occoquan Dist. Supervisor and County Chairman, has taken note of some interesting language used by PWC Chairman Corey Stewart in a recent article and is now filing a FOIA request for additional details…

Ms. Horan: In an article published in yesterday’s (Thursday December 11, 2014) edition of Inside Nova titled “Prince William leader floats idea of eliminating real-estate tax cap”, in the third paragraph of the article, Chairman Corey Stewart is reported to have told the reporter Jill Palermo “….as well as a separate survey his office conducted for political purposes….”

Under the authority of the Virginia Freedom of Information Act (§ 2.2-3700) I am requesting the following:

1. A complete, unabridged and un-redacted copy of that “separate survey his office conducted for political purposes” to which the Chairman refers in the article.

2. Copies, if available, of any time records indicating time spent by Office of the Chairman County employee staff in conducting that “separate survey his office conducted for political purposes”.

3. Copies, if available, of any reimbursement requested by the Chairman in his capacity as Chairman, on behalf of The Chairman’s campaign or by the Chairman himself individually and personally from the County for this “separate survey his office conducted for political purposes”.

4. Copies of any invoices submitted by and paid, accrued or encumbered to any commercial, non-profit or political organization to the County for the services rendered by any organization (commercial, non-profit or political) in conducting this survey.

5. Quotation as to competent legal authority that allows the Chairman’s office to conduct and expend county taxpayer funds for the “separate survey his office conducted for political purposes” AND competent legal authority for the Chairman’s office for directing his staff to conduct this separate survey for political purposes without the consent or knowledge of the entire PWC Board of County Supervisors.

Respectfully Submitted,

John S. Gray CPA PC

Corey Stewart Commits Political Hara-kiri; Where’s the Tylenol?

InsideNOVA is reporting the following:

Prince William leader floats idea of eliminating real-estate tax cap

Saying Prince William County residents are more concerned about overcrowded classrooms than their annual real-estate taxes, Board of Supervisors Chairman Corey Stewart proposed a change in local tax policy Tuesday that would focus more on raising needed revenue for schools and county services and less on capping tax hikes.

Why are our schools and roads overcrowded in Prince William County? First and foremost, the fault for this can be laid at the feet of those who have voted to rezone property from commercial to residential and increase the zoning density for residential properties while simultaneously keeping developer proffers artificially low. This has increased the demand for county services — schools, roads, fire/rescue, police, etc. — without bringing in an equal amount of tax revenues or adequate developer proffers needed to accomodate the demand. That is what we call tax negative housing — homes that consume more in county services than what they pay in real estate taxes. The construction boom of townhomes and apartments (which are actually considered “commercial” property by Prince William County even though people live there) has resulted in an ever increasing disparity in the tax base.

Stewart goes on to defend his proposal by saying,

“Regardless of your political stripes, people are more concerned about their quality of life at home than they are about keeping tax bills so low, I mean 30 percent lower than in Fairfax and Loudoun counties,” Stewart said. “There’s a price we are paying for that.”

The tax bills themselves are lower because home values in Prince William County are lower. People moved to PWC because they could stretch their dollars further than they could in Fairfax and Loudoun counties.  The percentage of tax that homeowners in the county pay on the actual values of their homes, though, is the HIGHEST in Northern Virginia and now Corey Stewart wants that percentage to go even higher. How does all that impact their quality of life at home? That translates to less money for groceries and clothes in the family budget let alone any other luxuries above that baseline.

There is little evidence that the county has cut back its spending on things that are not necessities, whether it be its little-used membership at the Robert Trent Jones Golf Club or workplace toga parties where school employees use instruments to measure genitalia. Until the county gets it priorities straight, they should not come back hat in hand begging the taxpayers for even more money.

The Derecho blog had two excellent posts last week on this very issue as it relates to taxpayers. In one, it is shown that “if you apply the tax rate in place at the time, on average, PWC property owners are paying 2.2% more in 2014 actual taxes for properties that have lost 32.7% of assessed value.” That same post also states that “Real Property Tax Revenues as Share of Total FY 2015 General Fund Revenues, Prince William County, 65%, the highest among local jurisdictions, 5% higher than even Loudoun to which the BOCS often compares us.”

The second post by The Derecho demonstrates that “[Per Capita Personal Income] for PWC fell 2.31% for the period 2012-2013.”

So, home values in the county have yet to fully recover, personal income in the county is down, what we are paying in taxes in terms of real dollars is up, the tax rate is the highest in the region (again that means we are paying the highest percentage in taxes on the value of our homes) and the county has the highest reliance upon real property taxes of any jurisdiction in Northern Virginia. That is a recipe for economic disaster.

Prince William County’s fiscal house is a complete mess (its current bond rating aside which has only been maintained by smoke and mirrors) and the ticking time bombs planted by two decades of neglectful public policy are about to go off.

Mind you, Corey Stewart is a Republican and self-proclaimed conservative yet he is advocating eliminating this much needed taxpayer protection mechanism in the county intended to make county government behave more effectively and efficiently. That doesn’t sound very conservative or Republican to me.

It is time that citizens say no more. It is time that we say you are done here. It is time for Prince William County Republicans to say, “ABC — AnyGOPer but Corey.”

clark-griswold[1]

Hey! If any of you are looking for any last-minute gift ideas for me, I have one. I’d like Corey Stewart, our County Chairman, right here tonight. I want him brought from his happy holiday slumber over there on his 18th century estate and I want him brought right here, with a big ribbon on his head, and I want to look him straight in the eye and I want to tell him what a cheap, lying, no-good, rotten, four-flushing, low-life, snake-licking, dirt-eating, inbred, overstuffed, ignorant, blood-sucking, dog-kissing, brainless, hopeless, heartless, bug-eyed, stiff-legged, spotty-lipped, worm-headed sack of monkey excrement he is! Hallelujah! Holy moly! Where’s the Tylenol?

 

Scott Jacobs Campaign Still Claiming GOP Label; PWC GOP Notifies Him of His Ouster

In a comment to a post on The Sheriff of Nottingham in Prince William County, a voter in PWC’s Brentsville District states that he/she received

a call from [Brentsville Dist. supervisor candidate Scott] Jacob’s campaign a couple of days ago and they said he was the Republican candidate [in the Dec. 23 special election]. I told the caller I thought Jeanine Lawson was the Republican nominee. The caller said Lawson was “another” Republican.

To which another commenter replied:

Lawson might be THE Republican nominee but Jacobs is still a Republican and therefore a Republican candidate.

That is incorrect. In Virginia, since voters do not register by party, one can only be a member of a party by joining your local party committee. Jacobs, by running as an independent against a Republican nominee, automatically ousted himself from membership in the local county party when he “violated the letter and spirit of the agreement” he made when he joined the party. Therefore, he is not “still” a Republican.

To that end, the Prince William County Republican Committee took action on Nov. 24 and the meeting attendees unanimously voted that he be dropped from the committee. An official letter from county Republican chairman Bill Card detailing the circumstances and proceedings was emailed to Mr. Jacobs on Dec. 8 and a hard copy is being mailed to him today. You may view the letter here.

Mr. Jacobs is obliged to inform his campaign staff that they need to cease and desist any claims that he is a Republican candidate in their communications with voters. To continue to do so would perpetuate an image of dishonesty.

Frank Wagner is running for Governor in 2017

Yes, that’s right. According to the Shad Plank, he confirmed it to John Fredericks at the Republican Party of Virginia’s Advance this past weekend. Anyone who follows RPV politics knows that, on top of being a mediocre Senator in the first place, Wagner teamed up with Eric Cantor and a gaggle of other Republican electeds and consultants to try and slate off delegates to Congressional district conventions this past year, with some limited success. It’s widely thought that this brilliant idea galvanized grassroots support behind Dave Brat, and cost Cantor his job. Nevertheless, Frank Wagner believes he can somehow win a nomination for statewide office.

The solution to this is to teach establishment hacks like Wagner a hard lesson by defeating him for renomination to his Senate seat (the 7th) this year. There are a number of other Republican elected officials who must be held accountable, most notably Delegate Scott Taylor, but Frank Wagner stands out. For his arrogance, for his condescension, for his ruthlessness, for his dishonesty, and, not least, for his sense of entitlement. In short, he needs to be the example made by the grassroots this year.

Agenda 2015: A Plan to Reform Prince William County Government

Two weeks from tomorrow, Dec. 23, voters in Prince William County’s Brentsville District head to the polls in a special election to fill the seat vacated by former Supervisor Wally Covington (R) who has been confirmed by the Virginia General Assembly for a judgeship in the county. Virginia Virtucon’s endorsed candidate, Jeanine Lawson, is looking very strong in the run-up to election day and we have high hopes that she will join Gainesville Supervisor Pete Candland and Occoquan Supervisor Mike May as another voice for the county’s taxpayers on the Board.

Candland and May were the only two supervisors to vote against the 5-year, 22.5%+ tax increase that passed the Board earlier this year. In a good news / bad news item, May has decided to run for Commonwealth’s Attorney in 2015. While we will finally be gaining someone in that office far superior to the current occupant whose abilities we have long questioned, we will be losing May from the Board of Supervisors where he has served with distinction. The addition of Lawson will at the very least help maintain the status quo for advocates of good government.

In deference to Mrs. Lawson’s campaign, I am holding off on making any announcements about my political future until after the first of the year so as to not detract any attention from where it should be these next two weeks. We need to do all that we can over the next 15 days to ensure that Jeanine Lawson is the next supervisor from the Brentsville District.

Why is it so important that we elect Lawson and others who share this basic good government philosophy? Because good governance ultimately benefits all citizens regardless of party, race, gender or current economic situation and that is the primary function of local government. We need people willing to commit to reforming our county government because we cannot keep going in the same direction that we have been for the past two decades in Prince William County — taxes are up, schools are more crowded, traffic is worse and businesses are bypassing us for Loudoun and Stafford counties. That is not good for anyone (unless you live in Loudoun or Stafford.)

This is why I have drafted “Agenda 2015: A Plan to Reform Prince William County Government.” Agenda 2015 is a series of common sense proposals aimed at solving our county’s current tax, spending, budget, education, economic, transportation, governance and ethics problems. By no means is this a panacea for these issues, but the start of what I hope is a long conversation that must be held in order to move forward on developing and implementing workable solutions. We cannot wait until after next year’s elections to start this discussion with new people, but must begin it now.

 

AGENDA 2015:

A PLAN TO REFORM PRINCE WILLIAM COUNTY GOVERNMENT

 

INSTITUTE “ACCOUNTABILITY BUDGETING”

This twist on zero-based budgeting sets clear measurable goals, verifies progress, and makes adjustments as necessary.  Not only would agencies and departments have to justify every dollar they request each year rather than start from the previous year’s baseline and grow from there, but requests for funds must be accompanied by specific measurable goals against which progress can be ascertained.  This will allow for future budgets to make adjustments based upon what works and what doesn’t work. Perhaps if the county budgeted according to such straightforward principles, residents would not be facing a 4.5% tax hike for FY ’15 and a massive 22.5%+ tax increase over the coming 5 years.

 

MAKE REDUCING CLASS SIZES AND INCREASING TEACHER PAY A PRIORITY

The Board of Supervisors currently hands over nearly 60% of all tax revenues to the school system via a revenue sharing agreement, yet our classrooms remain the most crowded in the Commonwealth and our teachers are among the lowest paid in the region. The revenue sharing agreement must be scrapped and the supervisors should ask the school board members to put together a budget that sets as its priorities: 1.) reducing class sizes, and 2.) increasing teacher pay. The school board can then do this as they see fit, present their plan to the county supervisors who then have the option to approve the budget or ask the School Board to make additional changes before approval. That would ensure the school board’s legal autonomy while also maintaining the board’s oversight for nearly 60% of our tax dollars. That certainly makes much more sense than what we have now – a backwards process where the supervisors hand the money over first and then relinquish all oversight responsibility.

 

REFORM THE COUNTY’S TAX STRUCTURE

Fundamental reform of our tax structure in Prince William County is needed in order to protect taxpayers as well as to ensure the county’s future economic development and prosperity. We should be upfront about what taxes the county collects. County taxes on electricity, telephone service (both landline and cell), and cable as well as the personal property tax decal fee should be abolished and be made transparent by utilizing real estate taxes to raise the same revenue instead. Likewise, special assessments for fire, gypsy moth eradication and other services should be included in the real estate tax, not separated out. By doing these two things, taxpayers would know precisely how much they truly are paying in taxes and would also be able to deduct the full amount from their federal taxes.

 

REFORM THE COUNTY’S CAR TAX

We need to reform the county’s personal property tax, which is one of the most onerous taxes that we have to pay. Every October residents get hit with a bill that they must pay in a lump sum unlike the real estate tax that most people pay each month via payments to an escrow account as part of their mortgage. This is unconscionable and the portion that taxpayers must pay should be eliminated. Since the state reimburses the county for a portion of the car tax and we should not forgo that, the county should credit taxpayers with the amount they would owe on the tax with money paid by them in real estate taxes. Even renters indirectly pay real estate tax by way of the rent they pay to the property owner, so everyone would be paying their share in one way or another. Simply put, just as the phone or cable company has been able to bundle your phone, TV and internet into one package for a single price, the county should bundle all the revenue that it needs to raise into one tax and eliminate the rest. It will be simple, fair and easy to understand as well as beneficial to taxpayers.

 

IMPROVE THE COMMERCIAL-TO-RESIDENTIAL TAX RATIO

Our county’s tax base remains disproportionately residential resulting in a heavier than necessary tax burden on homeowners.  The county has not even been able to meet the all-too-modest goal of a 75% / 25% residential to commercial split – and that includes counting apartment complexes as commercial property rather than residential. The continuous rezoning of commercial property to residential, which is the heart of the tax ratio problem, can no longer go on unabated. The Board of Supervisors should adopt a rezoning “swap” policy where commercial property may only be rezoned for residential if an equal amount of unused residentially-zoned property is converted to commercial use. At the same time, policies must be put in place to attract businesses to the county that will offer high quality jobs rather than simply more hospitality and retail sector positions.

 

ELIMINATE BPOL

The Business, Professional, and Occupational License or BPOL tax (which is a relic of the War of 1812) is on gross receipts, not actual income. Stafford County’s elimination of their BPOL tax is something that their economic development department has used to great effect in luring high-end businesses that might otherwise have located in Prince William County. As a result, Prince William County attracts low-wage retail and hospitality industries as its primary employers while Stafford and Loudoun counties struggle to keep up with the demand for office space from high-end, good paying private sector employers.

 

STREAMLINE THE COUNTY’S PERMITTING AND INSPECTION BUREAUCRACY

The county bureaucracy responsible for issuing building permits and conducting inspections is riddled with problems ranging from lost site plans for parcels of land to ridiculously high fees for permits to do something as minor as moving a fire sprinkler head a few feet to accommodate the reconfiguration of commercial office space. When it is easier to obtain a building permit for a house in the county than it is for a simple outdoor covered structure that has no walls, doors, windows, power or plumbing, there is something drastically wrong. When new businesses have their openings delayed by several months because of this bureaucracy, resulting in lost wages for employees and lost tax revenue for the county, it should be a priority for the Board of Supervisors to fix the process.

 

SHINE MOONLIGHT ON BOARD PROCEEDINGS

Our Board of County Supervisors is supposed to be a part-time position and represent the typical county citizen. Due to the county’s lack of quality employment, many residents must travel to other parts of Northern Virginia or into Washington, DC for their jobs. Most people have 9-to-5 types of jobs, yet too often our county supervisors hide in broad daylight by way of afternoon meetings that citizens cannot attend without taking time off from work. As a result, a majority of current supervisors are either self-employed or retired because they are the only ones who can participate. In order to encourage better civic involvement, both in terms of residents attending meetings to have their voices heard as well as encouraging them to serve on the board themselves, all meetings should be held during the evening.

 

INCREASE EFFICIENCY OF BOARD MEETINGS

Establish four board committees: Finance, Government Services and Operations; Transportation and Land Use; Economic Development; and Joint Schools/BOCS. Items would be introduced before the full Board and then the Board would have the option of sending them to committee for a more in depth discussion and study. The committees would have 3-5 members, meet monthly, and make recommendations to the full Board. During the budget process, Finance would hold additional meetings and work out a Capital Improvement Plan for adoption by the full Board using different metrics on things such as debt capacity, load, ratios, etc. This will serve to make BOCS Business Meetings more efficient and more focused on making decisions as opposed to exploration and/or oversight.

 

ADOPT STRONGER CONFLICT OF INTEREST AND ETHICS RULES

Our current Board has been plagued by numerous scandals with one of the most egregious being the use of taxpayers’ money in the form of office discretionary funds that were used instead for personal and political purposes. While this has been reined in somewhat, other avenues for abuse of our tax dollars still exist including the budget carryover process. The ethics and conflict of interest statutes that currently only apply to Loudoun and Fairfax counties must be extended by the General Assembly to cover Prince William County as well. Our county should be at the forefront of lobbying for this change and until it is instituted should put in place rules that mirror it.

 

IMPLEMENT COST-EFFECTIVE MASS TRANSIT

Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) can be implemented at a fraction of the cost of extending Metro, providing more immediate service and getting customers where they need to go much faster than Metro ever could.

The county needs to better publicize the OmniRide Metro Direct service (prominent Metro Direct signs at pick-up locations and recognizable signs on the buses like the DC Circulator would help).  BRT can serve the needs of people to connect with Metro now at a fraction of the cost.  The service should be tweaked – the buses could go directly to Metro stations in Fairfax from their origination point in Prince William and the departure/arrival stations could be prominently located close to entrances for the EZPass Express lanes on I-95 or the I-66 HOV lanes. This would also enable the county to avoid becoming a member of the Metro system and paying millions of dollars each year for system-wide maintenance of Metro that would gut the county’s transportation budget.

 

 

Stimpson Launches Primary Challenge To Howell

This just came in over the window transom into Virtucon’s virtual offices. We’ve known about this for a while, but have held off on releasing this so that Susan could do so on her own terms…

Over the last two years, I’ve heard the same thing from people across Stafford County and Fredericksburg: the politicians in Richmond are out of touch.  They raise our taxes, waste our money and always ask for more—all while we’re forced to cut our household budgets and sit in traffic.

That’s why earlier today I announced my candidacy for the House of Delegates in House District 28, which has been held for nearly 28 years by Delegate Bill Howell, the Speaker of the House.

Bill Howell has been the consistent force behind every major tax increase in Virginia in the last decade. He has voted for them, he has engineered them and they are his legacy.

Simply put, Bill Howell has lost his way and is the chief architect of a tax-and-spend agenda that rewards the politicians and punishes the middle class. It is time for a change.

<spanstyle=”text-decoration: underline;”>Bill Howell has been a friend, but we have profound policy disagreements. We’ve helped each other in the past and we have worked together at many levels to elect Republicans to office.  I was thrilled in 2009 when Republicans won all three statewide offices in Virginia and gained a super majority in the House of Delegates. But instead of leading as a conservative to transform government, Bill Howell squandered that opportunity by crafting the largest tax increase in Virginia’s history in 2013.

Howell repeatedly sides with the liberal Democrats and The Washington Post editorial pages and thinks government needs more money. The truth is Richmond has a spending problem, not a revenue problem.

To make matters worse, Speaker Howell promised those new tax dollars would be spent to improve our roads. But after the 2013 tax hike, in their very next budget, the General Assembly unlocked the transportation “lockbox” and rolled the money into the general fund breaking that promise. Republicans must put a halt to the duplicitous nature of the tax-and-spend crowd in Richmond.

Speaker Howell has equally been a champion of skyrocketing spending. Virginia’s budget has doubled under Howell’s leadership. This year alone he grew the budget over 13%.

Conservative Republicans do not continually raise taxes and grow the size of government.

Governing is about making tough decisions, actually living within our means like families do every day, and doing right by the people who elect us.

I look forward to highlighting my record of cutting taxes, cutting spending and making government more efficient while prioritizing funds for roads, schools and public safety with Speaker Howell’s tax hiking, big spending record.  

For the first time in decades, voters will finally have a real choice and Bill Howell will have to explain why his engineering of massive tax increases in 2004, 2007 and 2013, and the doubling of Virginia’s budget while we still sit in traffic, are good things for Virginians.

Sincerely,

Susan Stimpson

P.S.: Deep-pocketed special interests in Richmond will spend whatever is required to protect Speaker Howell.  Please consider making a generous contribution now to help us build a strong campaign and make the choice clear to voters: conservative governance or tax hikes and out-of-control spending. Contribute Now!

www.SusanStimpson.com
Paid for and Authorized by Virginians for Susan Stimpson

Is The Balance Of Political Power In Arlington Actually Shifting?

Anyone who follows politics in Arlington County knows about the relative political earthquake that was triggered by John Vihstadt’s reelection to a full term as a member of the Arlington County Board. He’s the first non-Democrat elected to the board since dinosaurs roamed the Earth. Worse yet, from the perspective of the Democratic junta that’s run the county forever, he’s encouraged “rogue” Democrat board member Libby Garvey to stand up to them more often on issues of fiscal sanity.

From their perspective, and that of the Washington Post, this is disastrous, and of course, motivated by classism and racism. (‘Shocker.’, says the average VV reader.) If one white elephant can be killed, the whole herd that the current board majority, led by Chairman Jay Fisette,  shepherds could be in danger. It would seem that years of arrogance and condescension may come to bite Democrats even in deep-blue Arlington. But the real question is: Is this only the beginning of a larger shift in Arlington politics?

The other two members of the Democratic junta board majority, Mary Hynes and Walter Tejada, are both up for reelection in 2015, and going into Election Day a few weeks ago, they were worried. There was scuttlebutt that Hynes might not run for reelection if Vihstadt defeated Alan Howze, the same man he bested in the special election a few months ago to fill the board vacancy. Now that has come to pass, and Fisette and Hynes (over Tejada’s temper tantrum) have decided to give up on the vaunted streetcar project.

What happens this coming year? The rumor among the Arlington GOP is that Mike McMenamin may challenge Hynes or Tejada, and he garnered the best result of any Republican candidate for county board in Arlington in decades in 2007, so he would represent a great threat to either. Democratic activists have admitted to this author and others that they “don’t have a deep bench” if Hynes retires from the board. And not to put too fine a point on it, but Walter Tejada is not exactly the sharpest knife in the drawer, as evidenced by his intransigence in the face of rejection by Arlington voters on the streetcar. Will a second strong candidate be recruited to run alongside McMenamin? All the anti-junta alliance has to do is win one of the two races, and that person can form a governing majority with Garvey and Vihstadt, which would be a nightmare for the Dem establishment in Arlington. And if both Hynes and Tejada go down… batten down the hatches. It look to be an interesting year in Arlington politics, for the first time in a long time. And that’s a great thing.

Corey Stewart Versus………????

Chairman Stewart has all but announced his intentions to run for reelection, holding his annual Fall fundraiser last month. Chairman Stewart who is a powerhouse at fundraising has the advantage of name recognition, and the power of incumbency.

However Corey has caught some slack lately, and has been painted as a tax raiser. In fact, in one Board meeting fellow Supervisor Democrat Frank Principi proclaimed:

Corey you’re looking more and more like a democrat everyday

No doubt if there is a challenge mounted against Corey, he will be painted as going too far left, and abandoning his Conservative base.

Enter Supervisor Pete Candland, who according to sources met on Saturday morning with several well-known political players who approached him about running against PWC board Chairman Corey Stewart. They represented several conservative groups who were upset over Corey Stewarts running of the board, and more specifically his financial policies.

Furthermore they have committed to financially backing Supervisor Candland if he decides to challenge Chairman Stewart.

Supervisor Candland is said to be discussing this possible venture with several other local activists and most importantly analyzing the impact of a county wide campaign on his family.

Whoever the nominee on the GOP side will be, they will likely face liberal activist Rick Smith. Grab your Popcorn folks this is getting interesting.

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Police Pop PWC Planning Post Perv

InsideNOVA is reporting that Prince William County’s (apparently now former) assistant planning director Ray Utz was arrested Wed., Nov. 19 on charges of indecent exposure after police received not one, but TWO calls from women reporting that a man driving a vehicle registered to Utz was exposing himself to them at stoplights in Woodbridge and Lake Ridge. He was officially charged with “two counts of indecent exposure and two counts of obscene sexual display.”

Readers of Virginia Virtucon may recall that Virtucon has been writing about Utz’s alleged sexual harassment issues for 5 1/2 years, so the fact that he has been arrested on such charges is not the least bit surprising.

See:

     EXCLUSIVE! – PWC Planning Office Sexual Harassment Scandal EXPOSED!    – 6/4/09

     GUEST POST: Latest Ray Utz Scandal    – 3/13/11

     Culture of Corruption Continues – PWC Fills High-Level Position Without A Competitive Search    – 7/8/14

(My, how prescient that first headline “PWC Planning Office Sexual Harassment Scandal EXPOSED!” was in light of these charges…)

We have detailed sexual harassment claims against Utz dating back to as early as 2006 via a memo written to then-Planning Commissioner Kim Hosen by women who attended an April 23, 2008 Planning Commission meeting who were appalled by Utz’s treatment of her during the meeting and alluded to conditions allegedly faced by female employees in his office over the course of the previous two years. In addition, we published a January 26, 2009 letter to the Prince William County’s Human Resources Dept. detailing “the indignity, humiliation, abuse and non-professional experience [women] have suffered working at the Planning Office under Ray Utz” and that goes on to allege various abuses and unethical behavior in detail as well as corroborating statements and information for the allegations contained in the memo to Hosen.

If these past allegations and the new charges prove to be true, then this would seem to indicate an escalation in this man’s behavior to the point this week where he had become so reckless that he was daring to be caught. He was arrested after he was alleged to have done this during the middle of the day at the intersection of Gideon Drive and Smoketown Road in Woodbridge and the Old Bridge Road at Mohican Drive intersection in Lake Ridge. That would seem to be the sign of a sick, sick individual if this is accurate.

Perhaps just as disturbing as his alleged behavior over the years is the fact that Prince William County was made aware of these problems in 2008 and again in 2009. Not only did they do nothing about it (other than sweep it under the rug and cover it up), but they chose to keep him on staff and then promote him to a plum position without engaging in a competitive search for the post despite both county board Chairman Corey Stewart and County Exec. Melissa Peacor claiming that all vacancies are publicly advertised and filled competitively. Utz was already one of the county’s highest paid employees earning in excess of $100,000 in his previous position before his promotion.

In light of the lengthy public record of allegations against Utz and now his arrest, Stewart and Peacor must be made to answer for their decisions regarding Utz and be held accountable for their actions as well.

Voters should not renominate nor return Stewart to the chairmanship in 2015 (nor should they elect Democrat Rick Smith – formerly known as the blogger “Mitch Cumstein” in the early days of Virginia Virtucon and on the old Too Conservative blog – as he is chairman of the taxpayer boondoggle known as the Hylton Perfoming Arts Center that is at the center of a whole other set of county scandals, but that is another story for another day.)

An interesting aside – according to the InsideNOVA article, Prince William County’s assistant planning director chose to live not in Prince William County, but in Fredericksburg despite being one of the county’s highest paid employees and being able to afford to live in PWC. Obviously he either knows something that the rest of us don’t or else he knows what a lot of us already do and that our county property taxes are too high and our county government wastes our tax dollars with reckless abandon. My guess is that it is a little of both.

 

Obenshain Thanks Loudoun YRs

State senator Mark Obenshain was the special guest at last night’s Loudoun County Young Republicans meeting in Leesburg.

Senator Obenshain thanked the YRs for all their hard work during the election cycles and congratulated them for their contribution to Barbara Comstock’s election to Congress, before going on to speak about the importance of staying active and engaged as the next round of elections are coming up soon. He talked about how the Democrats do such a good job at blowing out a few concentrated areas which are heavily Democratic and how that carries the state for the Ds. Obenshain talked about how Republicans can win statewide if we stay competitive in places like Northern Virginia while blowing out the turnout of the highly Republican 5th, 6th and 9th congressional districts. Congressional districts are divided by population so there are the same number of voters in those three districts as there are in the 3rd, 8th and 11th, the three congressional districts held by Democrats. With a Republican lead of 8 to 3 in Virginia’s congressional delegation it is clear why higher turnout in heavily Republican areas will result in Republicans taking back control of the statewide offices next time they are on the ballot. But first we need to hold the majority in both chambers of the General Assembly and Obenshain made sure to stress the point that 2015 is an important election year in Virginia where nothing can be taken for granted.

Obenshain is a strong supporter of Virginia’s Right to Work status. I greatly appreciate how often he works in the importance of how Right to Work contributes to our economy. Last night Obenshain mentioned strengthening our Right to Work laws as an example of work he has done in the General Assembly with Barbara Comstock.

The YRs in Loudoun are a very active club. They have a lot to celebrate right now with the huge win by Barbara Comstock in the 10th District. The Loudoun YRs put in a lot of work on the Comstock campaign and deserve a share of the credit for Comstock’s substantial win margin. Expect them to stay active in 2015 as Loudoun County has some competitive Delegate and State Senate races to watch.

WP_20141120_001

Cross-posted to Red NoVA

Parisot vs. Johnson This Friday In Race To Replace Comstock (UPDATED x2)

This Saturday, Republicans in Virginia’s 34th House of Delegates district will choose their nominee in the race to replace Congresswoman-Elect Barbara Comstock:

The canvass (also known as a firehouse primary) will take place at Colvin Run Elementary School, 1400 Trap Road, Vienna, Virginia, 22182. Voting will be conducted from 10:00am to 2:00pm on November 15, 2014.

Craig Parisot and Al Johnson are working hard to get out the vote before Saturday’s primary to determine who will challenge Democrat Katherine Murphy (who lost to Comstock in 2013) in the January 6th Special Election.

Craig Parisot came out earlier this week with endorsements from Gov. George Allen and Rep. Tom Davis. Said former Senator and Governor Allen:

I’m proud to endorse Craig Parisot in the special election for the 34th House of Delegates district. As a family man, veteran and successful entrepreneur, Craig has the experience and background to help grow our economy and create jobs. Craig will be an energetic and strong voice for Virginia families in Richmond in the hardworking tradition of Barbara Comstock and I respectfully ask you to join me in supporting his campaign.

Al Johnson has the endorsement of his son in a column at National Review:

Putting familial bias aside, anyone in Virginia’s 34th district looking for a representative that upholds Barbara Comstock’s legacy should consider Johnson at this Saturday’s firehouse primary. Comstock and Al Johnson (I mean, dad) have résumés with many similarities: They both have private- and public-sector experience, have raised a family in the district and know the community well, and have been committed conservatives for years.

Johnson’s endorsement by Susan B. Anthony chair Jane Abraham backed up a National Review comment concerning the Johnson campaign polling on social issues. The other comments attacking Craig Parisot and George Allen show how contentious even short campaigns can be.

While the race will come down to turnout, Craig Parisot has an edge on social media with more Facebook likes and Twitter followers while Al Johnson’s Facebook page seems to get the most engagement in Guatemala. While not an exact measurement of enthusiasm or momentum behind races, it’s an odd tidbit with the election being tomorrow.

Check out both candidate’s websites for more information:

Craig ParisotFacebookTwitter

Al JohnsonFacebookTwitter

UPDATE: Fairfax Supervisor Pat Herrity has endorsed Craig Parisot for Delegate:

Now that we have Barbara Comstock elected to Congress, the focus shifts to making sure we have a great replacement for her Delegate seat. Tomorrow, Saturday, November 15th, there is an important firehouse primary election taking place at Colvin Run Elementary School between 10am and 2pm. You must live in the 34th House of Delegates district to participate in the firehouse primary,

I am fully supporting Craig Parisot in this primary. He is a leader in the community and a successful businessman who understands how to create jobs and grow Virginia’s economy.

If you or someone you know lives in the 34th House of Delegates District, which covers parts of McLean, Great Falls, and Loudoun County, please get (them) out to vote for Craig Parisot on Saturday, November 15th between 10am and 2pm at Colvin Run Elementary School at 1400 Trap Road in Vienna. You can check which district you are in at this link – http://whosmy.virginiageneralassembly.gov/

UPDATE x2: Word in the 34th is Al Johnson’s campaign and surrogates are allegedly contacting potential voters and saying that Craig Parisot is not pro-life and is weak on taxes. There is nothing to back up the statements critical of Craig Parisot — in fact, Parisot’s website is the only one to address abortion:

PRO-LIFE:
Having just welcomed my son Jackson into the world, I understand the importance of life. We must work to strengthen our families, support systems and give parents more rights.

Both candidates commit to lowering taxes on their issues pages.

In a short campaign span of a week and a half, misinformation goes a long way. One would hope that campaigns could commit to an honest exchange of idea and discourage smear tactics among fellow Republicans in any election, but there are plenty of elements at play here that go beyond Parisot and Johnson.

One Out, One In for Coles GOP Primary

Prince William County Republican Committee Vice Chairman D.J. Jordan issued a statement this morning stating he will not be a candidate in the 2015 Republican Primary for Coles District supervisor, a post currently held by Marty Nohe.

Jordan To Forgo A Run For Coles Supervisor

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

October 2, 2014

WOODBRIDGE, VA — D.J. Jordan today released the following statement regarding the 2015 election for Coles Magisterial District Board of County Supervisor:

“I’m extremely honored by the many people who have encouraged me to run for Coles Supervisor, but after much prayer and consideration, I have determined that the timing is not right for me and my family for this particular race. I cannot dedicate myself as fully to a campaign like this as I would like; therefore, I will step aside for others to pursue this election.

“There will be other opportunities for me to seek public office and I look forward to doing so when the time is right. The conservative principles that I believe in will make our community a better place. As an activist, I will continue to advocate for a limited, efficient government that fosters personal freedom, improved quality of life, and opportunity for all.”

###

This news comes just one day after local businessman and lifelong county resident Paul O’Meara filed to run in next year’s GOP primary against Nohe. O’Meara owns Ballsford Kitchens & Bath and is a graduate of Hylton High School. His father founded both Paul O’Meara Construction, Corp. as well as Ballsford Kitchens & Bath. O’Meara was one of the signatories on the petition opposing the Bi-County Parkway submitted to VDOT a year ago and is a donor to Gainesville District supervisor Peter Candland, so those are two pluses in his favor in my book.

All,

This morning I filed as a Candidate for the Coles District Supervisor Office. I have also formed a Candidate Committee, Friends of Paul O’Meara. I know it will be a great deal of work, but I am looking forward to it! As a professional courtesy I have also called each member of the Virginia House and Senate which have portions of their districts lying in the Coles District. Thank you to each of you who have lent advice and support to me leading up to this point. I greatly appreciate any advice and support you may lend during this campaign!

Sincerely,
~Paul

Corey Stewart Feeding Democrats’ Caricature of Republicans

Prince William Co. Board Chairman Corey Stewart steps in it . . . again. Really? Sharing this on Facebook? How stupid is that?

image

Go ahead and insult half the electorate in one fell swoop and then add insult to injury by demeaning the problem of mental illness.

As Democrats make the false claim that Republicans are “waging a war on women” (never mind the despicable treatment of women by such Democrat luminaries as Bill Clinton and Ted Kennedy), it is dumb things like this that Corey Stewart did that continue to feed the caricature of Republicans they are trying to paint.

Corey Stewart and his ilk just need to go away.

Supervisor Riley?

Jim Riley and his wife Julia reside in Prince William County with their children Jacqueline and Jimmy. He is an attorney and the Senior Director of Government Affairs for a major national trade association based in Northern Virginia while she is a kindergarten teacher for the county school system. Since 2003, Jim has been a member of the Southbridge Community Association’s Board of Directors for the community of over 1,500 homes and more than 5,000 residents, spending nine of those years as its president. He has served in a number of appointed positions including as the At-Large representative on the County Housing Board.
VV. Why did you meet with Loudoun BOS Geary Higgins today?

JR: I met with Supervisor Higgins to discuss with him how he balances his job and family life while also serving in political office. It is no secret (or if it is, it is a very badly kept one) that I am interested in running for the Prince William County Board of Supervisors to represent the Potomac District. If I commit to doing this, I want to be certain that I have done my due diligence before jumping in the race. Geary works in a position similar to mine and is a coworker of one of my neighbors, so it was natural for me to sit down with him. I have reached out to other such officials as well to discuss this and am compiling everything that I have learned so I can make an informed decision.

VV. Why are you running for a BOS position in PWC?

JR: As I have said, I am considering a run, but am not running yet. As for why I am considering a run, I just see so much potential being wasted in Prince William County. We are losing out in the competition for good paying jobs to neighboring jurisidictions such as Loudoun and Stafford counties. That means people have to travel greater distances for such jobs which in turn increases traffic and decreases the amount of time that moms and dads have with their kids and each other. Our overall tax burden is too great, our regulations are too onerous and our priorities are misplaced. It doesn’t have to be that way, though. At least not if we instituted some very common sense policies and reformed the way that our county government operates.

VV. Why do you think you are a more qualified candidate than your opponent?

JR: Assuming the incumbent supervisor stands for reelection, that person will have had 20 years in office to make a difference. Our schools are still overcrowded, our teachers’ pay still lags behind their peers in the region, our business tax base is still anemic (and that description is being kind), our home values are still suppressed and our taxes are set to spike by more than 20 percent over the next five years. Obviously what this supervisor is doing hasn’t worked and it is time that we try a different approach. The current supervisor’s campaign slogan is, “I listen. I care. I respond!” That’s all well and good, but it is completely reactionary if you are simply responding to something that has already happened. At that point, it is often too late. The difference between us is I want to be proactive and not reactive. I have a vision of what we need to accomplish in order to get the county on the right track so it is not just a great place to live, but also one where businesses want to locate and create good paying jobs.

VV. How would you describe yourself politically speaking?

JR: I come from the Jack Kemp – Steve Forbes – Paul Ryan pro-economic growth wing of the Republican Party. I have been very fortunate in my life where I have worked closely with each of them. Kemp was my first paying client as an attorney and Forbes had the confidence in me to name me as his Deputy General Counsel for his first presidential campaign. Ryan was a coworker of mine at Kemp’s think tank “Empower America.” I closely identify with their brand of politics which is based on ideas that help people to realize their full potential and strive for success.

VV. If you could cut the budget in PWC, what would be the first item to go?

JR: I would end the county’s subsidy of the Hylton Performing Arts Center which amounts to $400,000 per year just for operating expenses. The county is already on the hook for $1.7 million per year for 25 years for debt service. There is no reason whatsoever that the county should be paying a penny more than what they are obligated to do under that agreement. George Mason University was supposed to pay the operating expenses, but somehow the county got stuck with the tab.

VV. Do you have a campaign website that is currently private?
JR: I purchased the domain votejimriley.com a few years ago and have a VoteJimRiley Facebook page. I have used them in the past for my HOA elections and could transition them to another race should I decide to undertake one. I currently use them to promote issues and other campaigns that are of interest to the area where I live.
VV. Have you assembled a campaign inner circle yet?
JR: I have some close friends who live in the district and have different areas of expertise that would be beneficial to a campaign. We have held some preliminary discussions about this, but have not put together anything formal yet.
VV. Do you have someone in mind for a campaign manager?
JR: My 11-year old daughter is angling for that job.
VV. Have you considered how you will raise money for the campaign?
JR: My initial thoughts are to have a three-level approach where I would reach out to individuals and businesses here in the district; approach others in the county and Northern Virginia who care about what happens in the county; and utilize my state and national political connections to raise campaign contributions. I have discussed in passing with Steve Forbes about him coming in to do an event for me at some point should I run and I would likely reach out to my former colleague Paul Ryan as well.
VV. Do you have connections with the grass roots in PWC?
JR: I have lived in Prince William since 2001, so I have gotten to know people from all walks of life whether they be party regulars, TEA party members, libertarian types – you name it. I have been an active blogger since 2005 and have also been a columnist for the local newspaper, so I have attracted support from many people based upon the ideas I have put forward to make our county a better place.
VV. How many people will knock doors for you outside of the grass roots?
JR: One of the most amazing things about a campaign is the surprise you get when you see who turns out to help. I have gotten to know so many people not only through my HOA and the local party committee, but also through religious organizations, swim teams, and the parents of my kids’ classmates. I frequently am asked by people I would never expect to help in a campaign if I plan to run and to let them know if I do so they can lend a hand. It is moments like that which encourage me to take the plunge and run. If you are just running in order to be someone and not to accomplish something, you are doing it for the wrong reason. I want to get something done and if I do this, it will be for them.
VV. Thank you for your time Mr. Riley.                                                                                                                  .

Given Mr. Riley’s answers, it certainly appears he has thought this through, and is close to a decision.

Corey Stewart’s Next Big Lie On YFT & UACs

Can you still call it someone’s next big lie if you expose it before it is uttered and you wind up pre-empting it?

Whatever.

Here’s what Prince William Co. Board Chairman Corey Stewart’s next big lie will be regarding the housing of Unaccompanied Alien Children (UACs) at Youth for Tomorrow facilities in the county – the Commonwealth of Virginia made PWC give money to YFT.

Let’s rewind things 3 1/2 years to then state Attorney Gen. Ken Cuccinelli’s opinion banning state grants to charities as unconstitutional. Following this Virginia could no longer provide direct grants to any charities not controlled by the state. The system that was put in place in order to meet constitutional scrutiny allows localities to award grants to charitable organizations on a competitive basis.

So, there you have it. Any attempts by Chairman Stewart to claim that Virginia forced or directed the county to give grant money to YFT is pure bunk. In fact, grant money provided by the state to the county was sat on by the county for quite a lengthy period of time before the county made the decision to award it to YFT.

Again, we have no quarrel with YFT itself or its Christian mission. The last thing that we want to see is this organization harmed by someone so willing to throw them under the bus in order to preserve the tattered remains of his political career.

What did Corey Stewart know about UACs and when did he know it?

Black Velvet Bruce Li has done quite the expose on Youth for Tomorrow’s program of housing illegal immigrant children for the federal government. Greg Letiecq lays out dates, specific federal grant awards and the amounts of those awards tracing the roots of this program back at least as far as June 2012. It appears that things really began to ramp up in January 2014:

On January 23, 2014 personnel from YFT and the Virginia Department of Social Services toured five off-campus properties to determine whether they would be suitable for expanding their program.

Why is this date important? Because later that same week the U.S. Department of Homeland Security put out a bid for “Escort Services for Unaccompanied Alien Children.”

ScreenSnapz0082[1]

January 2014 is also important because multiple sources have stated that Prince William County Board Chairman Corey Stewart was informed directly by individuals working at Youth for Tomorrow during that month about this program to bring illegal alien children to the county. Stewart then attempted to weasel out of this by stating, “Without providing the County any notice, the Federal Government is now placing illegal immigrant children at private and perhaps federal facilities in our county” and then saying that he was informed by Youth for Tomorrow “more than a week ago.”

Take note Stewart just says that the Federal Government never provided the County with notice. There is enough room to fly a planeload of Unaccompanied Alien Children through that statement. That leaves open that he could have been informed by YFT at an earlier date, which in fact he does admit to in his “more than a week ago” statement. Technically, January would have been “more than a week ago.”

So, it is with heavy hearts that we must ask the questions asked in every scandal since Watergate – what did he know and when did he know it?

A Freedom of Information Act request must be filed asking for Prince William County to produce all e-mails between Stewart, County Exec. Melissa Peacor, School Superintendent Steven Walts, and Youth for Tomorrow’s officers, directors, trustees and other personnel from January 1, 2014 through July 14, 2014. We should get some very interesting reading out of that…

PWC Supervisor Candidates Show Their Fundraising Totals

Following is a list of current candidates for the Board of Supervisors in Prince William County and their fundraising totals from Jan. 1 through June 30.

Chairman:

Corey Stewart
Starting Balance: $2,544.22
Raised: $70,051.77
Spent: $9,103.04
Cash On-Hand: $63,492.95

Stewart ramped up his fundraising machine to bring in a decent haul this period and kept his spending down. While $63K+ is a respectable total to have on hand at this point, should Gainesville Supervisor Pete Candland jump in the race or a proven monster-fundraiser such as former Del. Jeff Frederick throw his hat in the ring, Stewart will have to do much better than this. Frederick already has $15,451 sitting in his Virginia’s Future PAC that he could tap to kickstart a campaign. In his 2011 race against Toddy Puller, Jeff spent a total of $629,886 and won the PWC part of the district (which is the more Democratic part of PWC), but fell short in Puller’s home territory of Fairfax County.

Brentsville:

Jeanine Lawson
Starting Balance: $24,590.27
Raised: $14,257.65
Spent: $15,283.82
Cash On-Hand: $23,564.10

Scott Jacobs
Starting Balance: $0
Raised: $26,319.86
Spent: $17,799.97
Cash On-Hand: $8,519.89

While Jacobs outraised Lawson this quarter, that isn’t surprising given this was his first fundraising reporting period while she was in her second. The more important numbers to look at are the cash burn rates and the final cash on-hand numbers. Jacobs spent 68% of all the money he took in and is behind by nearly a 3-to-1 margin in cash on-hand. That is significant since the special election date has not even been set yet for this seat. While Lawson spent more than she raised this period, the percent of funds available that she spent was somewhat lower than Jacobs at 60%. More importantly, Lawson is showing strong support from individual donors within the district while Jacobs can only point to 4 individual donors who live in the district and gave over the $100 threshold for itemized reporting.

Coles:

Marty Nohe
Starting Balance: $21,786.96
Raised: $1,000.00
Spent: $590.00
Cash On-Hand: $22,196.96

Nohe’s sole contribution this period was a $1,000 donation from “Covington for Prince William County Board of Supervisors” made on 06/23/2014. Should PWC GOP Vice Chairman DJ Jordan jump in this race with his national GOP fundraising connections, this could make for an interesting (and expensive) contest.

Gainesville:

Peter Candland
Starting Balance: $12,287.29
Raised: $21,264.00
Spent: $3,038.10
Cash On-Hand: $30,513.19

Candland has begun ramping up for his next race and has been judicious in his expenditures. This next period and whether he decides to run for reelection or challenge Stewart for Chairman will determine just how much money he will be raising.

Neabsco:

John Jenkins
Starting Balance: $47,880.84
Raised: $0
Spent: $2,855.00
Cash On-Hand: $45,025.84

Jenkins either thinks he’s untouchable or is preparing to hang it up. With him, you never know (and he may not, either.)

Occoquan:

Mike May
Starting Balance: $43,591.17
Raised: $6,845.00
Spent: $4,481.17
Cash On-Hand: $45,955.00

May added slightly to his overall cash on-hand total during this period, just barely outraising Caddigan in the Potomac District.

Potomac:

Maureen Caddigan
Starting Balance: $20,904.84
Raised: $6,348.74
Spent: $2,971.43
Cash On-Hand: $24,282.15

While never a prolific fundraiser, Caddigan managed to secure just 10 contributions of $100 or more that were itemized. Two of them were from her employees in her supervisor’s office while a third was her husband who lists as his occupation that he is her campaign Treasurer. This number would look even worse if it weren’t for Nohe, Principi and Jenkins who basically didn’t do any fundraising.

Woodbridge:

Frank Principi
Starting Balance: $6,236.74
Raised: $100
Spent: $1,099.80
Cash On-Hand: $5,236.94

This is simply horrible on all counts. Principi must think that the Democratic-tilt of his district will carry him. A well-funded GOPer or a likable Democrat could certainly give him some real problems.

Stewart Skips Out On Closed Board Session To Go On Drive-Time Radio

Prince William Co. Board Chairman Corey Stewart apparently thinks that going on evening drive-time radio to promote himself is more important than presiding over a closed session of the Board of Supervisors he leads. Stewart appeared this afternoon on WMAL’s “Drive at Five” just after the 5:30 p.m. news to discuss the issue of Unaccompanied Alien Children being housed in the county. The problem is, the BoS was still in closed session until just before 6 p.m. (their second closed session of the day.) I have confirmed that Stewart in fact left the meeting early in order to go on the radio.

Perhaps he should aim to be a radio show host instead of County Chairman – he might actually be better at that than he is at his current gig.

Scott Jacobs – The Rob Wasinger of Brentsville

Earlier this year, Rob Wasinger ran for the nomination to replace Frank Wolf in Congress and provided us with plenty of unintentional laughs with his poorly run campaign. (Who would have thunk it since he is a ’94 grad of “Harverd” and a “Rebublican.”) He was unheard of inside the district before the race and had to work hard to raise his name id and prove his credibility. To that end, he released a press release with the endorsement of former CRFV state chair, Michael Cogar. While Cogar is a solid well respected activist, the endorsement fell flat as Cogar was also Wasinger’s consultant. When you have to resort to publicizing the endorsement of your own consultant, you have to wonder about the strength of a campaign.

Last week, Scott Jacobs running for Brentsville Supervisor released a similar press release which was picked up by the Bristow Beat. Much like Wasinger, Jacobs was largely unknown in the district until he decided to run for office. The press release touts Jacob’s small business support. The heart of the endorsement is a quote from Gary Desilets, a local business owner, supporting Jacobs and slamming his Republican opponent Jeanine Lawson. However, Gary Desilets is also the father of Joe Desilets the consultant for Scott Jacobs.

When the only person you can get to go on record talking about their support for Jacobs is the consultant’s father, much like Wasinger you have to wonder about the strength of the campaign. Wasinger came in fifth with 2% in April. While Jacobs will do better than that (it is pretty hard to finish lower than second in what is shaping up to be a two person race), we’ll see how well he does on election day when he has such a hard time showing support.

Corey Stewart Expresses Shock That There’s Unaccompanied Alien Children In PWC

Prince William Co. Chairman Corey Stewart has expressed his utter shock and dismay that there’s Unaccompanied Alien Children being housed in his county:

The crisis at the border has again reached Prince William County. Without providing the County any notice, the Federal Government is now placing illegal immigrant children at private and perhaps federal facilities in our county. Although no County facilities are being used to house the children, I will ask the Board tomorrow to direct the County Executive to attempt to find out more about the location(s) where these children are being held and whether there is anything that the Board can do to stop it. While it may seem cold hearted, it is important that these children be sent back home since letting them stay simply entices even more children to attempt the long and dangerous journey to the United States.


I’m shocked – shocked to find that gambling is going on in here.

Your winnings, sir…

Oh, thank you very much.


I’m shocked – shocked to find that Unaccompanied Alien Children are being housed here.

Your campaign contributions, sir.

Oh, thank you very much.

Take note that Stewart uses weasel words in his statement. “Without providing the County any notice, the Federal Government is now placing illegal immigrant children at private and perhaps federal facilities in our county.”

Stewart just says that the Federal Government never provided the County with notice. He never says that he was unaware that they were being placed in the county or that he wasn’t informed by some other source such as Youth for Tomorrow or the Greater Prince William Community Health Clinic that is run by Woodbridge Supervisor Frank Principi.

Quid Pro Quo Results in Unaccompanied Alien Children Being Shipped To Prince William Co.

As if the political situation for Prince William Co. Chair Corey Stewart wasn’t bad enough already, we’ve been handed this smoking gun by one of our regular confidential informants…

Recall several years ago during the budget battles, Corey fought against and got all the Youth Shelters closed, ostensibly to save a few hundred thousand dollars. Pure [expletive deleted]. It was a quid pro quo to Gary Jones, the longtime Executive Director of Youth For Tomorrow and the YFT Board for donating bunches of money to Corey’s campaigns. Those kids had to go somewhere. They did. All the troubled youth in PWC were and continue to be placed at YFT. It was and remains an exclusive source contract. (source redacted). YFT has grown substantially as a result of this sole source contact. They aren’t just on Bristow Road anymore. They have eight locations in PWC, the others being single family residences.

Long story short, these troubled kids, not just the recent UAC’s, when placed at YFT have to have medical attention as they are all essentially neglected in every way. The kids qualify for Medicaid and YFT arranges for these kids to be medically cared for at, guess where: The GPW Community Health Center, (source redacted). All of this is completely legal and of course, above Board.

But here’s the tie-in to Stewart: the YFT Board has a sole source contract with the Virginia state Board of Social Services also. Over the last month to month and a half, YFT has had about 120 of these UAC’s placed with it, meaning being housed in their facilities and every last one of them have come to the GPW Community Health Center to be medically treated. (source redacted) I want to be explicitly clear it is not the responsibility of the CHC to confirm or verify legal status of any youth sent over by the YFT to be medically treated as the contract is with YFT, not these individual UAC’s. But the fact is YFT is fully aware these children are UAC’s and I have to wonder if being YFT has a sole source contract with the County if the County knows of these UAC’s being housed by the YFT. In the course of the (source redacted), I said “[expletive deleted], can you image the political embarrassment Corey Stewart would get if people found out the County is directly responsible for these 120 UAC’s being in PWC?”. Well, now I wonder if the County is in fact aware of all this, what the political and career risks are to Melissa Peacor too!

While Stewart has no control of this, his “actions” have directly resulted in these UAC’s being placed with YFT here in PWC. He rants about illegals being released back into the general population yet his own actions are directly resulting in about 120 UAC’s being housed in PWC.

[Expletive deleted] indeed!