PWBOCS Cuts 8 More PWC Police Officers

Today, the Prince William County Board of Supervisors unanimously cut  8 more officers from the police department budget.  That makes a total of 8 officers and 12 support staff in the past 2 years.  In addition, a million dollars has been removed from their supplies budget.  This would have covered  training, radar, and other equipment.  Another half million dollar cut is looming on the horizon.  The cut became effective today.

There have been no new police officers added in the past 3 years.  Supervisor Nohe asked if they were really cutting police officers.  The answer is yes.  Even though there were 8 vacancies, there are still 8 fewer uniformed officers out defending public safety today than there were yesterday because these positions were abolished and cannot be filled. 

Perhaps one of the most devastating areas to be cut  is in the schools.  Starting 2011, there will be no police officers in middle schools.  The school police officer program  has been a highly successful one which cut down on neighborhood crime, bullying, gang membership and other annoyances that seem to plague kids of middle school age.  These officers knew the kids, the teachers, the administrators, the bus drivers, and many of the parents and had a good working relationship with all of the above.  They were able to ward of f potential problems.  After this year, the schools will just have to call and get whoever responds.

There are still 6 officers who are authorized to process 287(g) related matters.  These officers in the Criminal Alien Unit only work on issues dealing with illegal immigration and continue to  be funded. 

Prince William residents are going to have to decide how important public safety is to them.  Most folks don’t give it much thought until something happens and they need a police officer, on the double.  The wait time might be getting a lot longer as retiring officers are no longer replaced.  This might be the time to start asking how much more of a loss can we take. 

Reading the paper, it seems that PWC is plagued by more crime that is associated with inner city crime.  Any time something large happens, many officers are tied up on the scene and cannot respond to other calls.  When officers work a large crime scene, that means they aren’t out in your neighborhood or mine.  Are we willing, as a county, to let this happen?  Or should we start howling and demand that PWC begin to budget for these losses from the state.  A few pennies added to our tax rate might make a great deal of difference in public safety in Prince William County.

City of Manassas Wins State Award for 1 By Youth Effort

Guest post by Cindy Brookshire.

photography by Randy Donaldson, member, Trinity Episcopal Church



City of Manassas Neighborhood Services picked up their 10th state/national award in three years for their work in addressing neighborhood issues head-on with community partnership-based solutions.  The latest award is the  “State Neighborhood Youth Effort of the Year” for the national pilot 1 By Youth project that took place on April 24, 2010 in the Georgetown South neighborhood.  The award was presented in Roanoke on Sept. 25.  City resident Dwayne Lynch was a finalist for State Neighborhood Advocate of the Year.

 The City is sponsoring a neighborhood conference on Nov. 13 at the Boys & Girls Club from 9 am to 3 pm.  Register at  The event includes workshops, exhibits, a youth café and activities, a presentation by animal control, a pet contest and prizes.  It’s free.

 The City is also bringing back the award-winning 1 By Youth program to Point of Woods 1 & 2 and Point of Woods 3 neighborhoods on May 14, 2011.  You can hear more about it at Point of Woods’ Fall Festival, this Sunday, Oct. 10 from 12 to 4 pm.  Visit the 1 By Youth table. Contact Christen Zenich at 703-257-8315

Federal Judge in Michigan Reject HCR Challenge

From Huffington Post:


DETROIT — A federal judge on Thursday rejected an attempt to stop some key provisions of the new national health-care law, saying Congress has the authority to require people to get insurance by 2014.

The ruling – the first in a challenge to the Obama administration’s health care overhaul – came in a lawsuit filed in Michigan by a Christian legal group, the Thomas More Law Center, and four people who claimed lawmakers exceeded their power under the Constitution’s commerce clause.

But U.S. District Judge George Caram Steeh in Detroit said the insurance mandate, and the financial penalty if someone skips coverage, are not illegal. He said Congress was trying to lower the overall cost of insurance by requiring participation.

“Without the minimum coverage provision, there would be an incentive for some individuals to wait to purchase health insurance until they needed care, knowing that insurance would be available at all times,” the judge said.

“As a result, the most costly individuals would be in the insurance system and the least costly would be outside it,” Steeh said. “In turn, this would aggravate current problems with cost-shifting and lead to even higher premiums.”

U.S. Justice Department spokeswoman Tracy Schmaler noted the ruling “marks the first time a court has considered the merits of any challenge to this law.”

Now we all get to discuss what this ruling means.  Meanwhile, according to my friend Ivan, the race to the appeals court is on.  Where does this leave our esteemed AG?  How does this affect his solitary lawsuit?  

Most of us will now have more questions than we did before this ruling was issued.   U.S. District Judge George Caram Steeh was appointed by Bill Clinton and has been a U.S. District Judge for about 12 years. 

Open Thread Thursday, October 7, 2010

Its time to slap up another open thread.  Several people had a couple of remarks up.  I will leave the pin in until around noon in case people want to cut and past remarks to the new post. 

Every time I turn on the TV I heard about terror alerts in various countries.  What is causing this?  (I know, terrorists.)  Is all the problem in Europe or is it here too?  Who knows what or who thinks what?

The Unknowns behind the Terror Alerts

David Ignatius

McDonnell’s ABC Privatization Plan Meets Obstacles with Republicans

Governor McDonnell’s ABC privatization plan is meeting with some obstacles within the Republican party.  Many folks are digging their heels in and saying, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”  According to the Richmond Times Dispatch:

Del. R. Lee Ware Jr. is a political conservative standing on principle in the debate over whether to get Virginia out of the liquor business.

But he’s standing on a different principle than Gov. Bob McDonnell, who says the state has no business selling distilled spirits through the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control.

“The control of the sale of alcoholic beverages is a legitimate function of state government in serving the public good,” said David A. Bovenizer IV, spokesman for Ware, R-Powhatan. “Consequently, the free-market assertion regarding privatization of ABC is at best secondary to the common good.”

Bovenizer said Ware also regards the governor’s projections of state revenue from a private liquor industry as “unpersuasive” and the sale of the liquor monopoly unnecessary to raise money for road improvements, given the findings of a recent state audit of the Virginia Department of Transportation.

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