As ARLnow recaps its most clicked on stories for the year, I wanted to share three stories I found interesting from a local, state and regional perspective.
The Blue Ribbon Panel never gets off the ground.
While this panel may have had limited impact on Arlington governance, the incident shows what can happen if the right inner circle of people engages on an issue.
Libby Garvey has a record of being out in front on reform-minded efforts. She helped shine a light on the fiscal impacts of the now-shelved streetcar and still-possible aquatics center. She supported an independent audit function and worked to shine more light on the closeout process.
The concept for this Garvey Blue Ribbon Panel initiative was simple: on a short term basis, empanel a small group of Arlingtonians who possessed a level of expertise, to bring a fresh perspective to the county’s comprehensive plan.
My concerns were that even if the panel were truly independent and actually made a set of common-sense recommendations on county spending priorities, that those recommendations would be largely ignored.
However, there was a group of well-connected Democrats in the county that did not want to take a risk of any independent recommendations seeing the light of day. And as the June Democratic primary approached, they successfully lobbied the Board to stop it and leave us with the status quo.
Governor McAuliffe used unprecedented, sweeping executive authority to grant voting rights to around 200,000 felons.
The Virginia Supreme Court struck down the order. In fact, the court took the unusual step of granting an expedited hearing to tell the Governor what prior legal counsel, both Republican and Democrat, had already found: he does not possess that sweeping authority under Virginia law.
Here at ARLnow, one columnist suggested that to oppose the Governor’s action was tantamount to an assault on voting rights themselves. Many were willing to toss aside the protection of every voter’s rights as well as adherence to the rule of law in order to achieve a desired result.
But our system of government relies on checks and balances to ensure one branch does not run roughshod over the people. With a new president moving into the White House, it is likely many Democrats will now renew their belief in this concept.
We all should.
Metro entered full blown crisis mode.
As public scrutiny of accidents intensified, Metro took drastic action to address safety concerns with the announcement it would shut down sections at a time for repairs. And the General Manager even took the unusual step of firing employees.
At the same time the Chairman of the WMATA Board remained adamant that a massive infusion of money could solve the problems. But the pleas for $1 billion are meeting a high level of skepticism from government officials who look at the system’s track record.
So the question remains: will Metro to continue operating as we know it?
Or maybe it’s time for the system effectively declare bankruptcy and start over.
Mark Kelly is a former Arlington GOP Chairman and two-time Republican candidate for Arlington County Board.
After a two-day glimpse of gorgeous weather that followed a longer stretch of terrible weather, a sunny-if-cool fall weekend is upon us. As you firm up your weekend plans, be…
They say baseball is a game of inches. Okay, maybe that’s football. But for one Arlington Little League team, this can be taken somewhat literally. The Athletics (A’s, for short)…
The annual Army Ten-Miler race will prompt numerous road closures in Arlington this weekend. Runners will zip through parts of Rosslyn, D.C. and Pentagon City, starting and finishing the race…
Open Houses includes a 4 BD/2.5 BA brick home with newly refinished floors, brick fireplace and detached garage.
Encore Stage & Studio is excited to kick off its season with a swashbuckling adventure! What starts as a mystery turns into an adventure in an Encore adaptation of Robert Louis Stevenson’s classic novel. Young Gemma Hawkins escapes a dull life to search for where “X” marks the spot on a mysterious treasure map left behind by an old sea captain.
Gemma meets a slew of thrill-seeking sea farers as she races to find the treasure before any pirates do. Encore Stage & Studio presents_ Treasure Island_ running October 14-23, 2022 at Thomas Jefferson Community Theatre (125 S. Old Glebe Rd. Arlington, VA 22204).
Season subscriptions and single tickets are on sale now at www.encorestage.org. Single tickets are $15 for Adults; $12 for Children, Students, Military and Seniors. Season subscriptions begin at $33. Patrons can learn more about Encore’s COVID-19 audience procedures online at www.encorestage.org.
Friday, October 14 at 7:30pm
Saturdays, October 15 and 22 at 11am and 3pm
Sundays, October 16 and 23 at 3pm
Arlington kids can keep active this winter with Arlington County’s Department of Parks & Recreation’s Youth House Basketball League. Available for grades 1-12, this program begins in mid-November for grades 1-8 and early Jan. for grades 9-12 and costs between $75-90.
Come join the fun! Sign up by Oct. 12*!
Registration for grades 9-12 opens on Nov. 7.
If the league fee is a factor to signing up, check out the Department’s fee reduction program, which helps Everyone, Everywhere, Every Day! Access for All. Easy to apply! Whether you have a short-term set back or something longer-term. Learn more at parks.arlingtonva.us/fee-reductions or call 703-228-4747.
Mini Family & Pet Photo Sessions
Beat the rush and sign up to get your holiday photos now!
Bring your kids! Bring your dogs!
Check out the DeSilva Studios website. Look at the images and see if you like them