Fisette to Run for Reelection

by ARLnow.com February 1, 2013 at 3:45 pm 1,115 59 Comments

County Board member Jay FisetteCounty Board member Jay Fisette will run for reelection this year.

Fisette will formally announce his reelection run at next week’s Arlington County Democratic Committee meeting, his campaign said today.

An Arlington resident since 1983, Fisette was elected to the Board in 1997, becoming Virginia’s first openly gay elected official. He was also once an accomplished collegiate swimmer.

In a press release, Fisette’s campaign describes his goals for a hoped-for next term.

During his last term, Fisette has focused on maintaining sound fiscal policies as well as the development of Arlington’s Community Energy Plan, the successful launch of the Capital Bikeshare program, improvements to pedestrian safety, protection of affordable housing and e-government enhancements. Fisette has combined Democratic values with independent leadership.

Fisette’s objectives in his next term include balancing Arlington’s budget while also meeting long-term needs such as ensuring that Arlington public schools remain among the very best; maintaining a strong social safety net including affordable housing options; and implementing Arlington’s energy reduction strategy.

  • Hee-Haw

    looks like he’ll be reelected as Arlingtonians only vote for the name next to the “D”

    • Just the Facts

      I call this the “birther” theory of Arlington elections: no fact-based evidence for it whatsoever, but the cranks just keep repeating it, reality be damned!

      • Hee-Haw

        I hope you realize I was being sarcastic

      • View from the grassy knoll

        Your rediculous, the comments are that once in office our elected board is rarely challenged. That is a legiimate complaint. Fissette has been on the Board 15 years. That’s a long time. If he neither faces a challenger or even term limits It is very likely he no longer feels accountable to the whole of Arlington and is simply doing the things that hold his interest (ie pet projects).

        Dragging in random conspiracy theories to discredit a rational questioning of a candidate for public office makes you the wacko in my humble opinion

        • drax

          Dude, he was making fun of the people here who say that for real. Welcome to ArlNow.

          • novasteve

            Yes, it’s only my imagination that arlington county is dominated by democrats and no elected officials are anything but.

          • drax

            No, steve, what you’re imagining is that they only vote for them because of the D – which you can’t possibly know because you can’t read their minds.

            Is this sinking in yet?

    • Alan

      I only vote for people with a “D'” next to their name. I’m a democrat. I find republicans rarely represent my views so I don’t vote for them.

  • Arnie

    The suspense was killing me.

  • Becoming Indifferent

    I was going to say that!

  • novasteve

    Will someone please legally change their last name to whatever it currently is with a “(D)” after it so we can get something different for once?

    • Rory

      I am on the left, but I no longer vote for dems in county elections. we need a new voice

  • Not another 4

    It seems we’re all fed up with this County Board but Why don’t we ever have any primary challengers around here unless it’s and open seat? I’m a Democrat but even I would vote for change at this point.

    • Just the Facts

      “we’re all” = maybe 20% of the electorate.

      Majority rules in democratic elections, suck it losers!

  • novasteve

    Given turnout is going to be fairly low for this, and we’re obviously not going to get any choice, can we who are sick of the same old same old care to agree for a write in candidate? Who knows, maybe we can get more people to show up to vote for a write in vote for some form of change than people who show up to vote for Fisette?

    • Oracle II

      Are you announcing your write-in campaign so that you can finally rid Arlington of all non-Anglos, all the uppity Clarendonians and all non-smokers?

  • Pathetic

    Stop re-electing these people! They are only looking out for themselves. They give the manager a 5% raise while they call for a 2% reduction across all county departments. The rich keep getting richer…

    • drax

      The county manager is rich?

  • Any Republicans in the house?

    Well if the Republicans would put up a credible Candidate that person could win. Not against Fisette, but against 3 of the others board members. If it is between Clement, Kelly or Fisette, Fisette will win every time. I blame the Republican party as much as anyone.

  • YTK

    I was not impressed when I first met him and I am stil not impressed. Let’s vote him out of office.

  • Jeez

    It would be tough to find someone to beat an incumbent up for reelection, no matter what the level (county/state/national), it is a big challenge. But it can be done. And maybe their fighting cause can be to focus on keeping the roads in better condition and stopping vanity projects such as the new aquatic center.

    • Not another 4

      So is fisette really that powerful? He seems positively bored whenever I’ve seen him. He lists fiscal prudence and strong schools as a priority for his next term, but when he had a chance to act on those priorities last year he issued more more bonds for a luxury pool complex than for the schools who so desperately need new buildings. As a result we will likely have a luxury pool long before we have all our children in an actual classroom.

      If we can’t rally a challenger he will never have to reengage and represent the whole of Arlington. I’m not sure who you are but someone out there needs to step up and challenge him this election.

      • drax

        I could be wrong, but I don’t think the aquatic center is going to delay the building of classrooms one bit. Money is not a problem for school expansion – we have it. It just takes time.

        • Concerned parent

          Drax actually we don’t have it. We not only don’t have it in the bank (consider the current year budget cuts they are proposing at the schools) we can’t even borrow it right now. The superintendent could only propose enough bonds in the last cycle to partially solve the problem. The reason APS couldn’t propose a bigger bond issue among other political realities Of not scaring the cr*p out of voters was the fiscal need to keep within the dept ratio the County needs to maintain their preffered bond rating. The fact that the pool came before schools is obscene. And keep in mind your property value is linked to the performance of your local schools and the overcrowding will last for decades at the current rate of construction– not sure further home buyers will give much consideration to to the luxury pool in the shadow of 14th street bridge.

          • DCBuff

            @CP–drax is only concerned with facts when someone else doesn’t provide them to his satisfaction.

          • drax

            “I could be wrong….”


  • Alex

    No more years! No more years!

  • Don

    Life-long Democrat, but now I vote Green in Arlington County elections.

  • whiners

    If only someone else would come along and do all the work and save us. Oh well, we’ll just sit on our asses and complain some more.

    • ARL’er

      I wonder what some of the people around here did before ARLnow came along.

  • TuesdaysChild

    4 more years of Jay pursuing his pet projects at the expense of taxpayers.

    • nino

      Such as?

      • Phelps


        • DCBuff

          Jay has been a big backer of the Artisphere.

          • ACDC Hack

            Who can forget the photo of a grinning Fissette handing over the giant check for $7,300,000.00 to the then directors of Artisphere ??

            Not I….

  • Me

    Hey wait a second, while you are sitting there and whining about his performance at least he is out there doing something. You might not like what he is doing but at least he is doing something he thinks is best for the county…..meanwhile you sit reading Arlington now and just write pissy quips..if you can do better get the hell up and do it. Stop whining about Dems and republicans….this is a highly educated area…if anyone puts forward a good candidate the people of Arlington will vote for him or her…until then stop whining or do something constructive

    • Barfman


    • John K

      You’re new to the human race, aren’t you Me?

  • 4Jay

    He must be re-elected. After all, he was once an accomplished collegiate swimmer!

  • Not another 4

    I have to say often there are few redeeming qualities to the comments on this blog, but given that not a single person has expressed actual support for the policies and leadership of Jay Fisette, the comments could cause someone (probably someone not even posting) to run. And as for the person who said these posters should “stop whining and do something” I will say many posters seem to have considerable knowledge and history participating in the Arlington way, I think it was a pretty tepid endorsement that Fisette is “doing something” by snoozing through Board meetings and showing up at ribbon cuttings.

    Maybe we could get Arlnow to post some poll questions and although it won’t be scientific, may indicate if there really is this lock on reelection people claim.

    • drax

      Few people are dumb enough to launch a campaign for office based on nothing more than a few comments on a website.

      • Reality Check

        Well given the total lack of actual support represented here, it might cause someone to do that extra research. I know this is not the most sophisitcated of pubic opinion tools, but it is indeed one measure.

        • ARL-VA

          Not really.

        • ARL-VA

          The comments on ARLnow are heavily skewed toward frustrated Internet-addicted haters who are anti-everything, and the people who poke fun at them. Some other people stop by on occasion. That’s about it.

  • Blinders

    He is for placement of free charging stations for electric cars. I bet he would get more votes if he was for ‘free’ gasoline.

  • Arlwhat

    How dare Fisette run again! It’s just his kind of knee-jerk, short-sighted, ignorant liberal policies that have turned the once thriving metropolis of Arlington into the crumbling, broken wreck it is today. As our buildings sit vacant and the once verdant parks are filled with the burning trash fires once-productive-now-homeless members of Arlington’s neighborhoods use to survive the winter nights we will no doubt AGAIN turn from the obvious path of community salvation and vote for the same, shameful, un-American swill we have drowned ourselves with.

  • Not another 4

    So Arlwhat, are you saying he can count on the endorsement of the Sarcasm Society? I’m still waiting for actual fisette supporters to chime in with accolades on all his hard work and strong leadership before I’ll agree he deserves another term.

    • drax

      So that’s how you decide who to vote for?

      I guess it’s a little bettter than the D next to his name.

    • Arlwhat

      Yes. That is exactly what I am saying. He can count on the endorsement of the Sarcasm Society. Well done.

    • sarcasm society VP

      Maybe Fisette’s supporters don’t waste their time arguing on a local blog’s notoriously negative comment section.

      • novasteve

        how dare anyone dissent!

      • South Awwlington

        are we that well known??? Well!!!

  • Patch of Arlington

    Been thinking about board elections recently. Lifetime dem. Always voted for dems. But. I’m getting a little concerned about the arrogance that’s becoming a part of this group. They have hearings, but they’ve made up their minds. They all support each others pet projects, even if at this point it’s too expensive. I’m thinking it may be time to shake up things a little. For the first time, I’m thinking independent or even a moderate Republican. If this board doesn’t listen, then maybe someone else will. Nothing against Fisette per se. He’s just the next one up.

  • TJLinBallston

    Back to Mr. Fisette. He’s been an outstanding leader and an advocate for citizens as well as the business community. He’s a very sincere and thoughtful guy. I’m proud he’s serving on the County Board.

    • John K

      I do think he did a decent job at Whitman-Walker of Northern Virginia. However, backing the Artisphere and the Aquatics Center is enough for me to reconsider. His defense of the HOT lane lawsuit on behalf of the board was laughable, as well. Arlington deserves better.

    • sarcasm society VP

      I don’t know that he’s been an outstanding advocate for anything other than himself. In fairness, though, Artisphere is not a bad idea in and of itself. It was just a mistake to let county bureaucrats run it, since they had absolutely no experience or expertise in running an arts venue. Slowly but surely Artisphere is hiring people who actually know what they’re doing. I’m sure thy will have a full complement of professionals by the time their lease is up in 2025 and the place closes for good.

  • Not another 4

    Tjlinballston, What are his specific accomplishments? I’m not being Sarcastic I am curious. His website lists lots of committees but he has been on the board 15 years, the list of things he can take credit for should be pretty long. If the negative opinion of the posters here is any indication we often don’t know what the board is actually doing.

    Not trying to pick on you, but you are the only one so far who has proudly expressed your support for him

  • Lifemember

    Board member since 1983?!? This alone should indicate how detached our Arlington board members are from reality – what with the ‘amazingly productive’ projects planned in the past and on the table for the future.

    • G Clifford Prout

      Re-read the article. You’ll get a clue.


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