Thursday, September 18, 2014

Fairlington Resident to Fisette: Major League Arms Dealer Operating Out of Fairlington


AY attended last night's Fairlington monthly civic association meeting where County Board Chairman Jay Fisette was being grilled about the Pike Streetcar after doing his usual  civic association PR pitch promoting  the Pike streetcar.

Suddenly, out of the blue, a Fairlington resident asked Jay: "What can the County do about the arms dealer who is selling major league weapons out of his Fairlington townhouse/" Jay's response: "Oh we know about him, he tried to start a gun store in Nauck."

Jay then promised that he would definitely "do something" if the Fairlington resident contacted him. Consternation among the audience.

But of course County Government knows all about the arms dealer, since he has a business license from Commissioner of the Revenue Ingrid Morroy and has to pay personal property and business taxes to Ingrid and County Treasurer Carla de la Pava. Arlington Police are obviously good buds with the arms dealer, as is ATF which licenses him. An ATF Class III firearms license (machine guns) is pretty tough to get. If (as the Fairlington resident complained) the arms dealer is dealing withe Pentagon he may be dealing some serious artillery, above and beyond machine guns.

But what else could Jay say? County Board Member Libby Garvey, who despises guns, was in the audience.

Stay tuned to Saturday's County Board meeting for further developments.


Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Tuscon Accident Data - Shared Street Streetcars Are Not Compatible With Bicycles

Hey Yupette,

I visited my alma mater, University of  Arizona, last week. Arlington residents should be aware there have been a HUGE number of bicycle accidents related to streetcars and streetcar tracks along streetcar routes in Tuscon over the past two years. Most of the accidents have not been reported but of those that have been reported many were serious and involved veteran bicyclists. The data were collected by a non-profit bicyclist and pedestrian advocacy group, the Living Streets Alliance. Based on 86 reported accidents the group determined that there were several causes of accidents resulting from streetcars and streetcar tracks and bicyclists, the most common being bicyclists crossing streetcar tracks at a bad angle. Another big cause of bicyclist injures was bicyclists having to veer into streetcars or get caught in streetcar tracks while avoiding some obstacle. Latest consensus opinion among bicycle groups is that bicycles should not share streets with streetcars.

Anyway, you can see for yourself by searching "Tuscon bicycles streetcars accidents" on the Web.

Linda, 22205

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Planning Commission Votes to Protect McKinley School Trees

Hey, Yupette,

Arlington Planning Commission met last night and approval of the plans for McKinley School renovation and expansion were the first item on the agenda.

To the surprise of most in attendance the Planning Commission voted to protect a number of mature trees on-site rather than increase parking by 20 spaces.

Did not help the cause of APS and County planning staff when staffers revealed that public transit in the neighborhood is underutilized.

The Planning Commission also grilled APS's Director of Design and Construction, Scott Prisco, about the lack of capability to add floors to the school vertically (build up, not out). Since APS's Facilities and Operations Staff don't like modular construction, designing school buildings where classrooms can be added vertically within a few months is too expensive using conventional construction methods.

County Board will take up the McKinley School expansion and renovation on September 20th.

Terri, 22205

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Democratic Sock Puppets Should Not Serve on the School Board

 Hi Yupette,

I'm a parent with a child who attends Washington and Lee High School. And I am tired of the same sock puppet Democrats being nominated and elected to the School Board.

Whatever Barbara Kanninen and Nancy Van Doren say they want to do on the School Board in fact they have to go along with whatever decisions are made by the Arlington Democratic Committee behind closed doors. So, because Jay Fisette wants a new "Taj Mahal" elementary school (with lots of parking) at Thomas Jefferson Middle School they will have to facilitate that. Doesn't matter what the neighbors who live around TJ want.

It gets worse. At least three School Board members have retired or resigned in recent years because they disagreed with ACDC's agenda for APS - more strains on an already-stressed school system because of massive urbanization.

Barbara's and Nancy's performance at the Civic Federation candidates' forum last week - platitudes and promises - indicated they will do only what the Arlington Democratic Committee tells them to do. If they  serve on the School Board at some point one or both will get fed up and quit.

I ask the School Board to appoint an Independent to serve the remainder of Sally Baird's term of office. I'm voting for Independent Audrey Clement in November. Virginia's school boards are supposed to be independent of party politics. But Arlington's School Board is even more partisan than the County Board was before Chris Zimmerman left. And Barbara Kanninen and Nancy Van Dorn are a couple of Democratic sock puppets.

Linda, Cherrydale

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Independents Clement and Vihstadt Decisively Win CivFed Candidate Forums


Several Arlington residents who contribute to this blog attended the Arlington Civic Federation's annual Candidate Forum last night. Their consensus reports - Independent Candidate for School Board Audrey Clement and Independent Candidate for County Board John Vihstadt decisively defeated their Democratic opponents for County Board and School Board.

First to Audrey Clement - While her Democratic opponents Barbara Kanninen and Nancy Van Doren mouthed platitudes and promises Dr. Clement has a clear plan for improving the quality of education for Arlington K-12 students at less cost to taxpayers,

Rather than spending hundreds of millions building more Taj Mahal Post Modern schools advocated by APS's VIP architects Dr. Clement advocates adaptive re-use of office buildings and construction of modular classrooms, as Alexandria Public Schools have been doing for several years, at substantial savings to taxpayers, with the same or better quality of classroom education provided to students.

John Vihstadt kept his promises to make Arlington Government more efficient and less costly to taxpayers. Mr. Vihstadt's opponent, Alan Howze, wants to gold plate the Pike streetcar but wouldn't, or couldn't, provide estimates of how much that would cost. Mr. Howze also misstated that Mr. Vihstadt voted against Arlington's 10 year CIP when in fact Mr. Vihstadt voted for the CIP, minus funding for the Pike streetcar. It became obvious that, if elected, Alan Howze, will take Arlington Government back to the tax-borrow-spend Zimmerman era.

No contest. Anyone who's rational about County Government and APS viewed Audrey Clement and John Vihstadt as the decisive winners of their respective candidate forums.


Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Arlington Police Facilitate 'Drive Kids to School Day'

Hi Yupette,

Received the County's 'Car Free Diet' brochure in the mail on Saturday. Just in time for the Arlington Public School System's 'Drive Your Kid to School Day' today. This year facilitated by not one but two Arlington police officers at our elementary school. Oh, no one dared to ride a bicycle to school because of the traffic.

Why do APS and County Government waste our time and money with these charades? The traffic to and from our schools is worse than ever. Only difference is.the arrival times are spread out and the cops are on the scene to keep the traffic moving.

No Howze am I going to vote for another Democrat for County Board or School Board. Every year we pay more for less because of the Democrats' Stupid Growth.

Thanks for your blog.

Karen, 22206

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Scrap the Streetcar - Use the State's $65 Million for ART Bus Service Everywhere in the County

Hey Yupette,

I just received the County's 'Car Free Diet' brochure in the mail. Produced by DES Staff who don't live in the County and commute to 2100 one-per-vehicle from their bicycle-free outer suburbs.

Like tens of thousands of Arlington residents I am never going to ride a bicycle again. For one thing, the streets and even the sidewalks in my neighborhood (Ballston) are too dangerous. Who wants to ride a bicycle in the Winter?

The Pike streetcar is a complete waste of meney, and the tracks would be dangerous to several thousand who would ride bicycles on the Pike.

Instead of spending any more for the stupid Pike streetcar, I want the $65 million the State would provide for a dozen Pike streetcars spent to extend ART Bus service everywhere in the County.

I'm sick and tired of having to cater to the wants of a bunch of Elitist Democrats and their wealthy corporate and non-profit cronies, aided and abetted by a bloated bureaucracy most of whom wouldn't live in Arlington if you gave them a million dollar home or condo here.

Thanks for your blog.

Mark, Ballston