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Morning Notes

by ARLnow.com November 15, 2012 at 9:00 am 4,222 22 Comments

Voter Turnout Just Missed Record — A record number of voters turned out in Arlington for the Nov. 6 election, but the turnout just missed the record for percentage of active voters who cast ballots. In the end, 84.6 percent of active voters in Arlington cast ballots, just shy of the 84.9 percent active voter turnout for the 1992 general election. [Sun Gazette]

County to Hold Recycling Chat Today — Arlington County officials will be holding an online chat about residential recycling today. The “Ask the Expert” chat will be conducted via Facebook from noon to 1:00 p.m. [Facebook]

JBG Installs EV Chargers — Property owner JBG has installed a number of electric vehicle charges at its Arlington properties. The company says charging stations have been installed at the Hilton Crystal City (2399 Jefferson Davis Highway) and at the Rosslyn Gateway buildings (1911/1901 N. Lynn Street). The charging stations, part of the Blink charger network, offer priority parking to electric vehicle owners, according to a press release.

  • Nothing better to do

    I recognize that. That’s the east side of the Wiinky’s building.

    • torsionbar

      Yeah unfortunately I think the bug n bunny clinic went out of business earlier this year, due to the man retiring. I’ve talked to him a few years ago, he must have been nearly 70 years old. I think he had been in businesses there in the same spot servicing old VW’s for over 30 years. Personally, I think these small community businesses are what gave Arlington it’s character, and the wave of new construction, poorly built condos, megachain restaurants, and behemoth office buildings are eroding that character.

      • DCBuff

        The county is taking it over to expand Mosaic Park.

        • occasionally a fact

          Wrong block. The county acquired Mack’s next to the existing Mosaic Park. This block, with Wiinky’s and the garage shown (now run by someone else), was recently sold but not to the county.

    • cj

      Mr. Carter, the proprietor of the Bug and Bunny Clinic, took care of my vintage VW for many years. He did retire a couple of years ago due to declining health. He was a remarkable mechanic and a prime neighborhood character. My car and I miss him.

  • Confused

    Does anyone know what an “active” voter is? Or how that relates to registered voters? The percent of the eligible voting population overall?

    • JohnB2

      My understanding is that an active voter is a registered voter who has voted within the last 4 (possibly 5) election cycles.

      • drax

        That puts a damper on the numbers. It’s not turnout of all eligible or even all registered voters, it’s “active voters” – which nobody in the articles even defines. That’s kind of lame.

        • AHguy

          If the voting admin folks get an indication that someone on their DB has moved (Usually through postal service), they send out a letter asking whether the person has moved or not. If they don’t return that letter, they become “Inactive.” These folks are allowed to vote on election day if they haven’t moved, and may even be able to vote if they have moved depending on where/when the move occurred. But the vast majority cases, those “Inactive” voters truly are somewhere else now, making them pretty irrelevant in terms of turnout %.

          • drax

            Ah, thank you!

      • occasionally a fact

        The State Board of Elections considers a voter as “active” unless mail to him or her is returned, or he or she is flagged as having moved in the periodic check of all registrations against the USPS National Change of Address database. It has nothing to do with voter turnout. One can be considered active without having voted for several years. One can be marked “inactive” for having been determined to have moved without filing an address change, even if that person has voted recently.

    • Malaka

      I believe it is one who runs at least three marathons per year

  • Ren

    That blurb about the charging stations is interesting. I’ve been wondering when that might start happening at condos/apts. I guess the key question is how to broaden the footprint.

    • Ballston

      To broaden the footprint, wear wider shoes — EE width at least.

    • Chopper

      Before filling stations were ubiquitous, you got your gas at the hardware store.

      • Or

        ….or chain Mexican restaurants….

    • torsionbar

      I hope it doesn’t happen at condos or apartments. Who’s going to pay for the electricity consumed? Or the installation, maintenance, and repair of the charging devices? Put a credit card reader on it just like a gas pump and I’m fine with it. But as a building resident, I sure don’t want to be paying for someone elses electric usage, via increased condo dues or rent. No Thanks!

      Besides, EV’s are nothing more than a fad and a marketing gimmick, they simply are not practical or economical with today’s technology. Not to mention that the majority of electricity in the US is generated by coal burning. So that “electric” car is really a coal powered car. But when have the eco-fashionistas ever cared about facts?

      • drax

        We’ve discussed this here already.

        First, the majority of power in the U.S. is NOT coal powered. Coal accounts for 42% of power. In some areas of the country it is lower. About a quarter is natural gas and another quarter nuclear. Gas is still a polluting fossil fuel, but alot better than coal, and better than gasoline.

        Second, air pollution is a local problem. It affects cities with lots of cars and factories. The DC area has a critical air pollution problem. Electric cars shift the air pollution to where pollution may be below an unhealthy threshold and affects far fewer people.

        It remains to be seen if EV cars are practical or economical.

        • torsionbar

          Thanks for the follow up. So at 42%, coal is the single largest source of electricity in the US. Agree that air pollution is shifted when generation and consumption occur at geographically distant locations. As for air pollution being a local problem, I think that needs a few qualifiers. Air quality is a local problem. However greenhouse gasses, ozlone layer depletion, and global warming are all global problems, and are caused by air pollution. Electric car proponents would have us believe that those global air pollution problems are solved by driving electric cars, when in fact, they are not.

          As for practical and economical, the numbers tell the story, at least for the vast majority of driving Americans. A range of 200 miles or less for EV’s, compared with 400 to 600 miles for a typical gasoline or diesel vehicle is not practical for most. A refill time of several hours (or more) for EV’s compared with ~5 minutes for a gasoline or diesel vehicle is not practical for most. And a dollar cost that is 10’s of thousands of dollars higher than a gasoline or diesel vehicle is not economical for most.

          But back to the article, I don’t see any upside to installing EV chargers in apartments and condos, unless there’s a way to bill for usage. Making everyone in the building pay for it is asinine. They might as well put a “free” gasoline pump in the garage, and add the cost to everyone’s rent.

          • drax

            Yes, coal is the “single largest” – NOT the majority though. So the average electric car only uses 42% coal instead of 100% gasoline. So when you said an electric car is just a coal-powered car, you were wildly overstating the case.

            Yes, not all emissions problems are local – but some are. Those are the ones EVs may help us mitigate. And, again, in some cases EVs have fewer total emissions, including greenhouse gases, depending on the mix of fuels used to generate the power for them. So there’s that.

            I repeat – it remains to be seen if EVs are economical and practical. Even if they aren’t “for most” they may be for some, especially in cities – where, as we discussed, air quality is a high concern.

            I’m glad I helped you dial back your rage a little.

  • YTK

    I can’t believe I have not said anything snarky on ArlNow today (yet). What is happening to me???

  • Dog Walker

    What was the police activity on Col. Pike last night near Glebe? We passed by on our way to dinner at 7:30 and 7 (!!) police cars were stopped with an older model Lincoln Mark-something. We passed back by around 8:30 and they were all still there. I’m guessing it was something bigger than an expired county sticker.


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