PWC Eligible for HUD Money

According to the Washington Post, about $4 billion dollars has been set aside nationally by HUD to help ease the foreclosure problem and to target the hardest hit localities. The D.C. Metro area will receive approximately $95 million dollars of this money.

In this region, Prince George’s County is eligible for the biggest chunk: $10.9 million. Trailing in Maryland are Baltimore City with $4.1 million and Baltimore County with $2.6 million. In Virginia, Prince William County can tap into $4.1 million and Fairfax County into another $2.8 million, according to HUD.

But to get the money, states and communities have to act fast. By law, the funds must be committed within 18 months. It is up to each community to come up with a plan.

If the plan meets HUD’s requirements, states could receive their money within days, HUD Secretary Steve Preston told reporters yesterday. “It is our intention to push hard to get this money into the hands of these communities.”

It is critical for our BOCS to grab up this money as fast as possible by submitting a plan that meets with HUD’s approval. It seems appropriate that citizens immediately forward their ideas to their supervisor. Time is of the essence.

Washington Post link:

Gainesville Supervisor Stirrup Continues the Lies

Apparently Gainesville Supervisor – John Stirrup made an appearance in your town to spread outright lies. One has to wonder what his true motivation is in perpetuating the lies. Corey apparently has delusions that he could conceivably become LutentHere in PWC we have had a tumultuous time since the initial adoption of our ‘Immigration Resolution’ which most likely is now being marketed as ‘The Rule of Law Resolution’.

Not having been there but having heard Stirrup’s on a couple of occasions, these facts might give you a more balanced observation of what has occurred here in PWC.

PWC County Schools has 700 fewer ESOL students
** Yes, and some neighboring jurisdictions have had a greater percentage drops than PWC without implementing any policy.

Crime Statistics dropped 20%
** Actually, the crime rate has been dropping over the past 4 years, each year by approximately 20% even during the timeframe where we had the influx of illegals.

Hospitals are less overcrowded
** Actually, emergency room visits have remained at the same levels but we have had about 500 less uninsured births combined with losses in L&D nurses.

What I’m sure he didn’t mention.
1. We have DOUBLE the foreclosure rates of surrounding jurisdictions that supposedly have MORE of an illegal problem than we do.
2. We have lost 25-40% of our home values, again this is DOUBLE the losses of surrounding counties
3. Our program has only identified 1.6% of those arrested as ILLEGALS
4. We have had to cut vital services to fund this program like our Senior Citizen Day Center, no new tiles in our libraries, close a health clinic, and the list goes on and on…
5. According to our County’s ‘Citizen Satisfaction Survey’, minorities including Blacks now have the lowest confidence ever recorded in our Police Department which ALSO has been cut for next year. How convenient.
6. 5% of those handed over to ICE have ended up being RE-ARRESTED in our community which makes you wonder where the other 95% really are. I suspect the majority of them were simply released by ICE and are back on our streets.

Obviously, John is now taking talking points from Corey as they try to convince the residents of Durham, North Carolina to follow in their ill-conceived footsteps. Funny how he outright LIES about emergency room visits even after receiving a report to the contrary. And, again, those crime stats being touted as if they actually had some sort of significance. John you are a DESPICABLE LIAR.

“Immigration polarizes small-town America”

This story, in the Chicago Tribune, eloquently touches upon the more deep seated issue that faces America. In my opinion, we, as a nation, are facing an identity crisis. Who are we as Americans? Are we a belief of values, espoused by Thomas Jefferson, and our forefathers? Are we really a nation based on the content of our character or the color of our skin? Very soon, the identity of America will look very different, within decades, “white” Americans will become the minority. What does that mean, and how will we integrate this new dynamic into our culture?

It’s a sense of unrest familiar in small towns and suburbs across America. Immigrants have flooded the country in great numbers in the past. What’s different now is where they’re settling—far from the border states and big cities that long absorbed the huddled masses.

Their integration into small-town America is marked in Manassas, as elsewhere, by a language of fear, resentment and anger. Under pressure from longtime residents, local officials have cracked down, ordering police to dramatically increase the amount of time spent checking people’s Immigration status.

Those authorities say they’re targeting illegality. Others say they’re simply going after brown people.

If we’re due a national conversation about the changing complexion of America, though, it’s not happening in the 2008 campaign.

Barack Obama and John McCain both support what they call “comprehensive” Immigration reform, but neither spends much time on this volatile topic in his presidential campaign. When they do, they don’t address the fundamental tension of America’s great Immigration debate today.

In Manassas, some old-timers watch their home changing and fight the newcomers. Others fight that backlash.

For all of them, it’s a battle for their very identity.

A new complexion
For most of our history, immigrants settled largely in the Northeast and the Midwest. In 1920, nine out of 10 immigrants lived in cities of more than 100,000. The quintessential immigrant destination was Manhattan’s Lower East Side.

Now the decline of traditional manufacturing is redirecting immigrants to agricultural centers in the South, tourist centers in the West, smaller cities all over. The Census Bureau first picked up on this dispersion in the 1980s, but the proportion of immigrants in small towns really took off in the mid-1990s.

In Prince William County, where Manassas sits, whites went from 65 percent of the population in 2000 to 52 percent in 2006. Hispanics increased—from 10 percent to 20 percent, roughly—in the same period.

Maureen Wood liked the diversity at first. The students at the high school where she is a substitute teacher taught her Spanish words.

Then the school district put up mobile classrooms.

A friend’s son couldn’t get work as a landscaper when he came home from college for the summer. The company owner said he only hired native Spanish speakers, to make it easier for his crew and foreman.

The changes turned Wood and Kipp into activists. Pressure from citizens like them is having a powerful effect in Prince William County.

Last year, the county board of supervisors ordered its police force to inquire more regularly about people’s Immigration status. They later scaled back that directive, but the thunderous debate had its effect, as immigrants started running scared. Hundreds withdrew from English-as-a-second language programs in local schools.

Illegal immigrants Rounded Up in Culpeper

From the MJM

Published: September 23, 2008

About 40 law enforcement officers gathered in Culpeper early this morning for a county-wide sweep for illegal immigrants.

Town, county, state and federal officers with Immigration and Customs Enforcement met around 3:30 a.m. at the Culpeper Police Department, where they organized into several teams.
Following a briefing, the teams gathered for final last-minute preparations on Cameron Street before beginning the sweep around 5 a.m. Some of the teams got into unmarked SUVs, while others drove unmarked sedans, accompanied by local officers in marked patrol cars.

Sources say about 25 people were targeted in the sweep. The outcome of the joint initiative was not immediately known.

Town spokesman Wally Bunker said the results of the sweep will be discussed at a 1 p.m. press conference at the Commonwealth’s Attorneys office.

Officials said the sweep was meant to target three categories of people – those who had returned to the U.S. illegally after being deported, suspected or known gang members, and those who have very frequent but minor involvement with the law.

Now what is all THIS about? It sounds like a collective effort of the Culpeper Sherif’s Dept, the VA State Police and ICE to round up illegal immigrants. Since when is this done? Some folks must be in a state of Nirvana tonight. Others are probably very sad if their family members are gone.

Facts please.

Economic Fix: Buy Out, Bail Out or Must Fix?

Several threads showed people asking for a dedicated thread on the economic crisis we are in. Bear Sterns is gone. Lehman Brothers is gone. AIG was saved. Who will be left standing? Will CEOs keep bringing in their huge 20 million dollar salaries on your tax dollar? Are people profiting on the losses of others?

What happens if the government does nothing? Is the Senate mistreating public servants like Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson or Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke? Does the Senate not get it or are they just grand-standing for political reasons?

You asked for it, you got it. All Pearls of wisdom go here.

PWC & Immigration Study Circle Information

> From – The Center for Voter Deliberation of Northern Virginia

A reminder: You are invited to an information meeting on Study Circles on immigration in the Prince William County area. The meeting is Saturday September 27, from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m., at the George Mason University Prince William campus, in the Bull Run Building, Room 130 (1st floor). Parking is available in the King Lot.

Register, or just to learn more

GMU/PW campus map

Study Circles are facilitated community conversations that help us better understand all sides of the immigration issue, build relationships across groups, and develop action plans and policies based on common ground.

We believe the community needs a respectful, honest and productive conversation about immigration. We hope you can join us at GMU/PW on September 27.


Charvis Campbell
George Mason University – Prince William

Beth Offenbacker & Bill Corbett
Center for Voter Deliberation of Northern Virginia

To read the full press release, visit –

Quick Note: The Study Circles are Confidential and WILL NOT BE FILMED.

City Brings Home Three State Neighborhood Awards

A Special Congratulations to Cindy Brookshire

For immediate release

Contact: Kisha Wilson-Sogunro
Neighborhood Services Coordinator

City of Manassas

City Brings Home Three State Neighborhood Awards

MANASSAS, VA – The City of Manassas, one of its neighborhood organizations and a local youth have won three state neighborhood awards. They are:

State Neighborhood Youth Individual Effort of the Year

Michael Sensale, Cannon Ridge Community

State Neighborhood Youth Group Effort of the Year

Week of Hope Program, City of Manassas Neighborhood Services

State Neighborhood Project of the Year

Weems Neighborhood Watch/Week of Hope Cleanup

The awards were presented on Saturday, September 20 at the 9th annual Virginia Statewide Neighborhood Conference, held at the Hilton McLean Tysons Corner.

The City of Manassas has been stepping up efforts to build strong neighborhoods and increase civic involvement since it hired Kisha Wilson-Sogunro as Neighborhood Services Coordinator in November 2006. Sogunro has put her extensive knowledge to work addressing critical needs in the community,

“This was truly a city government-citizen group partnership,” said Cindy Brookshire, whose project had the support of more than a dozen Weems Neighborhood Watch members to organize a four-day cleanup of Landgreen Street, where Manassas Cab Company driver Khawaja Ahmed was murdered in February 2008. More than 30 youth and adult church volunteers, including the general manager of the cab company, worked with Watch members to fill four City trucks with trash and yard waste, mow 12 lawns, haul away a trailer load of hazardous household waste (used motor oil, paint, car batteries, TV and computer monitors), reinstall a mailbox and spread a truckload of mulch. They ended their labors with an ice cream “party in the park” at Byrd Park. “Our Neighborhood Watch could not have pulled this project together without the encouragement of Officer Scott Stallard of the City of Manassas Police Department, Kisha’s in-field guidance of the Week of Hope volunteers, and the Public Works Department, which supplied us with courtesy trucks, wheelbarrows and other tools we needed to get the job done. I’m grateful to the City and to the church youth for their help in our crime prevention and community building efforts.”

The City is planning to host its own Neighborhood Conference on Saturday, November 15 from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Carteret Mortgage Branch Boys & Girls Club on Dean Drive, complete with workshops, a marketplace of exhibits, a block party lunch with “divine desserts” from local churches and their own Best of Neighborhood award winners.

To register for the City’s Second Annual Neighborhood Conference, go to

“Activists Want Answers on Panel Choice”

Kristen Mack, in today’s Washington Post article, focusing on the appointment of Duecaster, has clearly connected the comments of Robert Duecaster to “Advocator.” It was interesting to me, viewing the comment section, that Advocator tried to deny he was actually Duecaster! Ummm, Robert, you already took responsibility for your comments regarding “pitchforks and shovels,” it’s a little too late for back tracking. My hope is that we can start moving away from immigration status, and really focus on the underlying issue in this debate: the demographic changes in the county. We don’t know who is documented or not, legal resident or not, but we can focus on how to help our neighbors without vilifying an entire segment of our population, the Latino community. Certainly, our country is facing an economic crisis of a magnitude that will effect us all, and I believe our collective energy is better focused on the issues that REALLY will effect our everyday lives, like a bailout of a trillion dollars! When our personal property taxes come in next year, that will be a sobering moment for all us.

We Deserve to Know

Please sign this online petition by clicking here. Your address and email will be not published. You have the option of signing your name without it being publicly displayed. It will get sent to all the supervisors. I know it is intimidating to sign a petition or even write a letter to your supervisor knowing that it may get FOIAed by Help Save Manassas and end up on Greg’s blog. We must all stand together to confront their bullying tactics. We can’t give up our rights to representation out of fear. Once you are done signing, please forward to your neighbors, friends and family in Prince William County. Thank you.

To Chairman Stewart and Supervisors Stirrup, May, Nohe, Caddigan, Jenkins, Principi and Covington:

We, the people of Prince William County, express deep disappointment at your appointment of Robert Duecaster to the county’s Strategic Goals Task Force, Human Resources Committee confirmed on September 16, 2008 with a 5-3 vote.

We commend Supervisors Jenkins, Principi and Caddigan for voting against it.

You have the right to vote however you wish as a supervisor, and we respect that is part of the process. However, it light the of fact that Mr. Duecaster has made anti-Hispanic, xenophobic, and anti-Catholic statements both addressing the Board during Citizens’ Time and writing on blogs,

And, in light of the fact that the appointment was confirmed on the inaugural day of Hispanic Heritage Month, we ask you for the following,

1. Please make a statement as individuals, not as the Board, explaining why you voted the way you did. Tell us how you feel about Mr. Duecaster’s anti-Hispanic, xenophobic and anti-Catholic comments. For example:

This really is not about immigration, it’s not about legality or illegality, it’s not about economics, I’m going to tell right what it’s about; it’s about and invasion of this country. This country is being invaded no less than if hordes of armed people came across its borders. This invasion is not armed, but they’ve got weapons. The weapons that they use are their anchor babies…This invasion is being funded by foreign governments…We’re going to repel this invasion, one way or another, it will be repelled. You can either be part of the repulsion or you can be part of the other side. (Robert Duecaster during Citizens’ Time, October 16, 2007)

What’s even more ironic is the fact that el Pape will be here bemoaning how some jurisdictions have ‘treated’ the illegals. He’ll disregard the facts that we’ve educated their anchor babies, provided social services, indulged their vulgarities, cleaned up their trash, and provided them with a higher standard of living and more freedoms than their own countries used to give them. He’ll berate us for not embracing them wholeheartedly, for not allowing them access to our universities at the expense of our own children, and for not rewarding them for violating the sanctity of our borders. He’ll be pandering to them to gather members to replace those who left the Church due to the institutionalized approval of his priests’ penchant for little boys’ behinds. (Robert Duecaster comment written as “Advocator” on, April 14, 2008. He admitted to being “Advocator” to the DC Examiner. Click here for the article.)

Please click here and review this collection of his written comments.

Please click here to review a video documenting his statements to the Board or ask Channel 23 to assemble the county’s own video documentation of his statements.

2. To mark the occasion of Prince William County’s declaration of Hispanic Heritage Month, please make a statement, and take meaningful action as an individual citizen and as a District Supervisor to express your appreciation of people of Hispanic heritage in this community.

We recognize that you have not always voted in accordance with your moral beliefs or your best judgment. We ask that you take this occasion to come forward and make a statement based on your personal beliefs instead of obscuring them behind such protocols as courtesy votes and unanimous votes.

You are our elected representatives in government. We need and deserve to hear you express how you really feel and what you believe.

People of Prince William County, Virginia

Settlement on the Horizon?

Apparently a settlement is in the works for the case brought against the City when they attempted to redefine a family.

ACTION ITEM: Consideration of Resolution #R-2009-38 as Full and Final Settlement Agreement and Release of the Equal Rights Center, Et Al. v. City of Manassas and City of Manassas Public Schools and City of Manassas School Board, Case No. 07 CV 1037 – TSE/TRJ before the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia. (Staff: Lawrence D. Hughes, City Manager.