July 27, 2019 | 6:30pm | Warren County High School
There will be a performance of a variety of acts such as monologues, scenes, and musical numbers. There will be an art sale, bake sale, and raffle baskets. Accepting cash, card, and checks. Admission is free but donations are welcome.
Mayor takes aim at restoring order and discipline to council meetings
The cover sheet for Monday evening’s (Aug. 10) Front Royal Town Council meeting contains an addition in BOLD text under item number 5, “Petitions and/or Correspondence from the Public”.
Referencing Robert’s Rules of Order by which many municipalities including the Town, conduct meetings, is printed: “Public speakers and Council Members must use the same civility, decorum, orderly behavior, relevancy of comments to subject at hand, and appropriate language in addressing Town Council as they would in addressing a Judge in a Court of Law. No profanity, vulgar, or sexist language, or irrelevant commentary, is allowed.”
It is followed by a notation that “Further Details found page 2 of this agenda.” Page two in its entirety elaborates with 6 bullet points on the guidelines referenced on the agenda cover sheet.
Those points include acknowledgment of the mayor as presiding officer of council meetings, with authority to enforce the rules of behavior on both the public and council members; further noting that council members must address the mayor before speaking and confine their subsequent remarks “to the question before the body” avoiding “all personal or indecorous language.”
Bullet point 4 begins, “There can be no personal attacks,” adding that, “A speaker can condemn the nature or likely consequences of a proposed measure in strong terms, but under no circumstances can he attack or question the personalities or the motives of another member. The measure, but not the man, is the subject of debate.”
The thin political line
That’s drawing a very fine line, I thought, because often isn’t the motive of “the man”, the source of the measure at hand, as one might argue was the case in Interim Town Manager Matt Tederick turning his July 27th report on town business into a personal attack on Royal Examiner publisher and mayoral candidate Mike McCool? It was a report that essentially turned the manager’s report and council meeting into a perhaps subtle Chris Holloway mayoral campaign rally. And it was a “rally” that a council majority of fellow Tederick and Holloway County Republican Committee members, save Vice-Mayor Sealock, and even the one (Thompson) who isn’t, seemed perfectly happy to join, in attacking Mayor Tewalt’s efforts to stymie the political tone Tederick’s report and the meeting had taken on.
However, bullet point 6 does elaborate, “Governmental bodies may enforce policies against personal attacks … so long as they do not use the personal attack policy as a pretext to squelch a particular substantive viewpoint.”
Elsewhere, bullet point 6 adds that “Federal court decisions have established” that to ensure the efficient conduct of governmental business and “to maximize citizen participation in the discussion” that “public policy” in this regard “override the speaker’s First Amendment rights of free speech.”
Well, this will be a fun one to see the enforcement of debate in the likely not too distant future.
I found myself wondering at the impetus for this precautionary note on public and council behavior. Was it made in anticipation of a McCool reply to what had been said about him by Tederick on July 27, and how council had jumped on board with, as previously reported in the above-referenced story, that unfounded personal attack?
Or perhaps was the mayor trying to head off a “Part 2” of any further in-house politicization of coming meetings?
I called Mayor Eugene Tewalt over the weekend to shed some light on the addition of the Roberts Rules of Order guidelines on public and council member behavior to Monday’s agenda.
“After the ruckus at the last meeting I asked Matt and the town attorney to put something together for me to read before the public comments,” the mayor explained.
I noticed the referenced Roberts Rules focus on public and council member behavior, but doesn’t reference staff, I told the mayor. So, would you as the meeting’s presiding officer, make the judgment call on staff behavior in this regard, I asked Mayor Tewalt.
The mayor replied that that was his belief, but he would check with Town Attorney Doug Napier for further elaboration on the staff adhering to the same behavioral standards as applied to the public and council members.
Stay tuned for the next thrilling episode of “As the Council Turns” in the coming Royal Examiner video and report on Monday’s meeting, as well as work session discussion of the 2nd Amendment Resolution before council seeking a commitment the Town will not follow the State General Assembly in limiting the carrying of firearms into governmental buildings, spaces, office and meeting rooms.
District 29: Thank you, to everyone who came out yesterday and cast their votes
Thank you, to everyone who came out yesterday and cast their votes for me. I am truly humbled and appreciate the great turnout for me or my opponent Mr. Traczyk.
For those who supported my campaign and trusted me with your vote, thank you! For those who supported my opponent, I will work tirelessly to earn your vote in the general election and look forward to seeing you on the campaign trail.
I would like to thank all of my volunteers for the time they gave to our campaign. I appreciate them all for the many calls they made, every door they knocked, and finally for their willingness to spend more than 8 hours in the hot sun spreading our message to the voters.
Our success yesterday is entirely yours.
From the bottom of mine and Katy’s heart, we are deeply humbled by our friends who rearranged busy schedules to come out yesterday, especially on a Saturday. To the party faithful who voted and endorsed my campaign for the house of Delegates, I will be a conservative fighter in Richmond.
I like to thank the Legislative District Committee for running a smooth Firehouse Primary. The time you gave and efforts you put into are unmatched and it showed.
Now, the focus is on my Democratic opponent and defeating liberals on the ballot this November.
Sixth District Perspectives with Congressman Ben Cline – August 9, 2020
While I am home in the Sixth District and not in Washington, DC, know that I am always working on behalf of you. This week, House and Senate Leadership, along with the Administration, discussed an additional COVID-19 relief bill. As potential legislation develops, I will continue to monitor these ongoing negotiations. Further, to help fight red-tape and burdensome regulations, I introduced bipartisan legislation on Friday aimed at saving taxpayers potentially billions of dollars. There was also some excitement here in the District between the naming of a new Superintendent of Shenandoah National Park and the opening of a new emergency call center in Roanoke. And until the time that I am called back to Washington to further address the coronavirus, I look forward to spending time traveling our beautiful District and seeing the folks who I am privileged to represent.
In the midst of House and Senate Leadership negotiations regarding an additional COVID-19 relief bill, the President took Executive Action this week to help those in need. In his order, the President provided $400 per-week supplemental unemployment payments to out of work Americans, extended student loan relief, and afforded protections to those facing evictions. The order also directed the Treasury Department to allow employers to defer payment of the employee portion of certain payroll taxes through the end of 2020. This action follows the recently introduced Health, Economic Assistance Liability Protection & Schools Act, or HEALS Act in the Senate.
Among its provisions, this legislation seeks to address several underlying issues still affecting our Nation during the coronavirus pandemic. As millions of Americans continue to face financial hardship, this legislation would provide a second round of direct Emergency Impact Payments to individuals to help them through these difficult times. Further, the bill continues enhanced unemployment benefits established under the CARES Act but lowers the rate slightly to help encourage folks whose places of business are reopening to go back to work, which will ensure the long-term viability of our economy and the financial stability of American families.
The HEALS Act also provides $105 billion in education funding to ensure our schools can open safely in the fall. Additionally, the bill extends the Paycheck Protection Program, which has allocated nearly $612 million to businesses right here in Virginia’s Sixth District and is currently supporting 70,000 jobs in our area. And finally, it affords liability protections to businesses, hospitals, and schools, which is vital as our country continues its phased reopening process. While House and Senate Leadership and the Administration continue negations on a final package, I am hopeful that bipartisanship will prevail and that a targeted relief bill is voted upon soon on the Floor. With that said, before passing another piece of coronavirus-related legislation, we must be mindful that there is still at least $500 billion that has not yet been spent from previous relief bills.
SMART Government Act:
The size and scope of the Federal bureaucracy often leads to waste at the expense of the American taxpayer. That is why my colleague, Congressman Dean Phillips (D-MN), and I have teamed up to introduce a series of reform bills over the course of the next few weeks.
This week, we introduced the bipartisan SMART Government Act aimed at promoting efficient technology use by Federal agencies. This legislation would implement a three-pronged approach to establish better governance and oversight regarding Federal technology practices. First, the bill would work to consolidate the more than 12,000 government data centers to not only save Federal dollars but to promote transparency within these facilities. Additionally, it would require Federal agencies to properly track and report their software assets to eliminate unnecessary redundancies in purchasing.
And finally, this legislation would mandate that documents transferred to the National Archives and Records Administration are done so electronically to ensure the government is better equipped to access its data and respond to individual requests in a timely manner. The Federal government invests more than $90 billion annually in information technology, and these measures are needed because, at this time, the Federal bureaucracy lacks the necessary oversight measures to protect against waste.
Blue Hills E-911 Communications Center Facility:
This week, I was pleased to attend the ribbon-cutting of Roanoke’s new 31,000-square-foot Emergency Communications Center. The building will house both Roanoke’s Emergency 911 Center and Virginia 811. Combined, these two entities field more than 1.5 million calls from area citizens each year. The new facility will not only benefit day-to-day operations, but it will also prove beneficial for handling major events and multi-jurisdictional incidents. This public-private partnership was born of a mutual need for better space to dispatch professionals in response to incoming calls. This project will undoubtedly help both organizations best serve our community.
Shenandoah National Park:
Shenandoah National Park not only provides tremendous outdoor recreation to Sixth District residents but also serves as a tourist destination and economic driver for our region. I am excited by the announcement of Patrick Kenney as the new Superintendent, and his experience as the Deputy Superintendent of Yellowstone National Park will serve him well.
Thank you for the opportunity to serve as your Congressman. If my office can ever be of assistance, please contact my Washington office at (202) 225-5431. Follow me on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter for the latest updates.
How to choose the right air conditioner
If you need to buy a new air conditioning system, you have a number of options. Here are a few tips to help you decide how to best cool your home.
Determine your needs
The appropriate system for your home will largely depend on the type of dwelling you live in. If you have a house, you might want to invest in central air conditioning or a geothermal pump. If you own a unit in a multi-family building, consider installing a wall-mounted system. If you’re a tenant, opt for a portable air conditioner. Regardless of your choice, make sure the system you select adheres to building rules and municipal noise control regulations.
Establish a budget
Evaluate power requirements
The ideal cooling capacity for your air conditioner (measured in British thermal units or BTUs) will depend on the size of your dwelling, the quality of the building’s insulation, and the number of rooms and stories you want to cool. While you want a unit that’s powerful enough to maintain a comfortable temperature throughout your home, an oversized model tends to operate in short bursts and consume excess energy.
You should determine in advance where your air conditioner will be installed, especially if you live in an apartment with limited space to accommodate a bulky unit. If you’d prefer to only cool certain rooms throughout the day, a portable model on wheels may be a convenient choice. If your home faces south or a majority of its windows are on the south side, your air conditioning system will need to work harder. However, blinds or thick curtains can help block the sun and thereby reduce your cooling costs.
Once you’ve selected an air conditioner, hire a professional to install it and make sure it works.
Regardless of the type of air conditioning system you need, look for a model with Energy Star certification. This will guarantee that the unit is energy efficient.
Town Talk: A conversation with Michael Sean Williams – a coronavirus survivor
In this Town Talk, we’ll have a conversation with Michael Sean Williams. Michael is the owner of MDUB Chauffeur Services, LLC in Front Royal. MDUB offers quality transportation for up to six persons for airport, Port of Call, concerts, sporting events, wine/craft beer tours, and other special events. Michael was the Director of Student Services at Randolph Macon Academy from 1997 to 2017. Michael can be reached at (540) 336-3127 or by email at email@example.com or check out his Facebook page or website to view vehicle and rates.
In this conversation with our publisher Mike McCool, Michael shares his ordeal of dealing with the virus. Both Michael and his wife Sherry contracted the virus, each having similar and different symptoms as Michael will explain.
Town Talk is a series on the Royal Examiner where we will introduce you to local entrepreneurs, businesses, non-profit leaders, and political figures who influence Warren County. Topics will be varied but hopefully interesting. If you have an idea, topic, or want to hear from someone in our community, let us know. Send your request to news@RoyalExaminer.com
Reps. Cline and Phillips introduce bipartisan bill to promote efficient technology use by federal agencies
Congressmen Ben Cline (VA-06) and Dean Phillips (MN-03) introduced H.R. 7949 – the SMART Government Act. This legislation would implement a three-pronged approach to establish better governance and oversight regarding Federal technology practices.
H.R. 7949 would:
1. Work to consolidate the more than 12,000 government data centers, which would not only save federal dollars but would promote transparency within these facilities.
2. Require Federal agencies to properly track and report their software assets to eliminate unnecessary redundancies in purchasing.
Rep. Cline said, “The Federal government invests more than $90 billion annually in information technology yet lacks the necessary oversight measures to protect against waste. The SMART Government Act is a first step in working to promote a system of technological use that is more accountable to and efficient for the U.S. tax-payer.”
Rep. Phillips said, “We didn’t leave the Stone Age because we ran out of rocks – we found a better way of doing things. Congress is an 18th-century institution operating in a 21st-century world. In order to meet the needs of the American people, and save the taxpayer money, we have to update and innovate. The SMART Government Act will modernize our government and put us on the path towards being more efficient and responsive to our constituent’s needs.”
This legislation is the first in a series of bipartisan government reform bills that Congressmen Cline and Phillips intend to introduce together over the next several weeks.