Manassas Area News and Updates

It seems that convicted killer Paul Powell has filed for clemency.  His lawyers say even though he has been bizarre and obnoxious he doesn’t deserve  to do.  His execution has been set for March 18. 

The boom boom boom we have all heard is coming from Quantico.  The News and Messenger reports the following:

Quantico Marine Corps is blasting this week.

Residents in the area have been hearing loud booms today as a result munitions training that is expected to last all week. The overcast skies are increasing noise and vibrations, base officials said.

The training continues through Friday, from 6 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. each day.

The BOCS met yesterday.  I believe they voted to restrict parking long Coppermine Drive off Williamson Blvd.  I sure hope so.  It is a blight.  I do wish the BOCS would read out what they are voting on and what yea and nay means in the case of the vote.  I often am unsure what the vote is.  It would add more transparency to county government.

Please add to the news.

Support your local community, buy locally!

potomacfarmsGreat story from the PWCA blog.  I love supporting local farmers, either buying produce or beef.  Here is a wonderful way to support your local community!



Click here to read the full story!

What: PWCA 1st Thursdays – Local Food & Sustainable Agriculture
When: Thursday, March 4 at 7:30 p.m.
Where: Bull Run Unitarian Universalist Church, 9350 Main St., Manassas

Once home to a thriving farming community, subdivisions and shopping centers have replaced much of Prince William’s rural landscape. This loss isn’t unique to Prince William. Family farms have given way to corporate agribusiness nationwide, essentially entrusting the quality of our food and well being to big business.

Today, after years of rising obesity and blood pressure, fast food diets are giving way to increasing interest in locally grown food… fresher food that retains more nutrients.

Better food is only part of the benefit. Locally grown means locally sold. Supporting urban farming also preserves open space, improves the appearance of our community and supports our local economy, helping keep our taxes in check.

Do you know where your food comes from and what’s in it? How far did it have to travel before reaching your table? Is it even possible to have agriculture in DC’s densely populated suburbs?

On March 4 at 7:00 p.m., Hiu Newcomb, owner of Potomac Vegetable Farms, will tackle these questions and talk about the benefits of locally grown food and sustainable agriculture.

Water-board Attorney to Visit UVA

John Yoo
John Yoo

John Yoo, attorney with the Bush Administration will speak at UVA on March 19 at the Miller Center for Public Affairs.  Yoo was an author of the ‘torture memos’ which advised the Bush Administration that water boarding and other harsh techniques of interrogation were legal.

John Yoo was deputy assistant attorney general in the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel.  He currently has returned to teaching at the University of California at Berkeley’s law school and is promoting his book, “Crisis and Command: A History of Executive Power from George Washington to George W. Bush.”

Last week after a long series of DOJ investitgations, it was determined that Yoo and other attorneys “exercised poor judgment” in formulating their legal advice to the Bush Administration.  The ruling was very controversial and polarized political factions.

Expect to see heated debate at UVA.  Various liberal groups have called Yoo a war criminal.  Thomas Jefferson’s academic village will be rocking on March 19 with this latest visitor.  I don’t expect the students to go quietly with this guest speaker.

Yoo called a war criminal in rotests in Philadelphia
Yoo called a war criminal in rotests in Philadelphia

VA Delegate Assembly Disses Freedom of Speech


From Virginia Planned Parenthood:

Yesterday, SB18, the omnibus package that includes the ‘Trust Women, Respect Choice’ license plate was passed by the full House. However, like the House version of the bill, the language in SB18 was changed to redirect revenue generated by the sale of the plates away from Planned Parenthood to the Virginia Pregnant Women Support Fund. Despite the public outcry and media attention, anti-choice Delegates refuse to grant Planned Parentood equal viewpoint.

So there you have it.  The Virginia Delegate Assembly has not only dissed freedom of speech but it looks like they don’t think that women have enough sense to state where they want their money to go. Rewind to a few weeks ago.  In An Issue of Fairness we illuminated the hypocrisy going on in the Delegate Assembly with HB 1108 which was about Pro-Choice license plates which read Trust Women/Respect Choice (see illustration).

UPDATE: The bill now goes to the Senate. Hopefully the Senate will amend this bill by returning the funds to Planned Parenthood.  No victory laps yet, delegates.

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Senator Bunning Attempts to Snarl Traffic

Senator Bunning apparently is trying to make a point as 2000 DOT workers were furloughed without pay. According to ABC News:

ABC News’ Lisa Stark reports: Sen. Jim Bunning, R-Ky., didn’t just stop extensions of unemployment and health insurance benefits with his “hold’ on these funding measures last week, he also stopped an extension of the Highway Trust Fund for 30 days. That means the fund cannot be used to pay for any of its programs or its employees.

So, the Department of Transportation as of Monday morning, furloughed 2,000 federal workers. DOT says that number could climb if this stalemate over funding drags on. Employees affected include federal inspectors overseeing highway projects on federal lands. If the inspectors aren’t there, the projects must shut down. DOT says that will affect 41 critical construction projects from Alaska to the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Democrats are using this stand off to point out Republicans being obstructionists. Senator Bunning thundered out at reporters who attempted to talk with him heading up to the Senate floor. (and this video is especially for Cousin Slowpoke)

Senator Bunning allegedly demonstrated the international sign of contempt. The highway fund will probably go through this week. ABC reports:

Bunning did go to the Senate floor and give a coherent explanation of why he is holding up the unemployment benefit extension, COBRA, and Highway Trust Fund money – he wants it to be paid for elsewhere in the budget. His preference would be to use unspent stimulus funds.

“I support extending unemployment benefits, cobra benefits, flood insurance, highway bill fix, doc fix, small business loans, distant network television for satellite viewers. If we can’t find $10 billion to pay for something that we all support, we will never pay for anything on the floor of this U.S. Senate,” he said.

This debate stands every chance of squaring off into its respective corners.  Republicans will probably call this move by Senator Bunning  being fiscally responsible.  Democrats will probably use the O word.  I probably side with the Senator on the elevator issue.  I can understand being territorial about one’s elevator access.  You let one reporter on, they all want on.

“Give me my bus back”

A big blue sign saying “Give me my bus back” greeted those attending the budget hearing at SJHS Monday night.  Many students and parents came out to protest the proposal to eliminate   shuttle transportation to and from the specialty school areas.  Such specialty schools might be IB at Garfield, SJMS, SJHS, Beville, Bio-Tech at OPHS,  Foreign Language at Parkside,  the Cambridge Program at Brentsville, IT at Forest Park  and Fine & Peforming Arts at Woodbridge High School, to name a few. 32 buses are currently used to take students from hubs to the specialty programs.  The school system is expecting to add 3,500 new students.  The buses will be used to help offset these additional students.

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