This class will focus on proven approaches for successful acrylic paintings. Subject matter will be the student’s choice. No previous painting experience with acrylics necessary. The class will introduce students to fundamental concepts of color mixing, composition, and paint application. The class will be a fun and non-competitive environment to indulge your creative impulse Friday afternoons from 1:30 pm – 4:00 pm, Sept. 13, 20, 27, Oct. 4. Classes will be held in our upstairs studio at 205 E. Main St., Front Royal, Virginia.
Class fee: $180 per person. Materials are not included.Recommended materials list is available on website.
About the instructor: An award-winning, self-taught artist, Armand is a full-time oil & watercolor painter represented by galleries across the United States. Armand has had numerous One-Man Exhibitions and his work is found in notable corporate and private collections around the world.
Class policies: We understand that scheduling conflicts do happen. You may cancel your class for a full refund up to 48 hours before the first class, by phone or in person. No refunds will be issued after this time.
In case of inclement weather, we will reschedule the class. Please check our Facebook page for updates on class cancellations due to weather.
Sixth District Perspectives with Congressman Ben Cline – September 21, 2021
As the District Work Period comes to an end and the House prepares to return to Washington, there is much work to be done. While Democrats plan to push a massive tax and spend agenda, I will continue to advocate for the issues most concerning to the American people like securing our southern border, fighting inflation, rescuing stranded Americans in Afghanistan, and combating crime in our cities. Congress must also address potential misconduct by the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. If the reports of him circumventing the civilian Chain of Command are true, action must be taken. While I enjoyed traveling the Sixth District this past week meeting with constituents, I am prepared to address these pressing issues in Washington.
Democrats’ Tax Plan:
This week, Democrats began floating almost $3 trillion in tax increases, the largest tax increase since 1968. This crippling tax hike comes at a time when American families are dealing with a stagnant economy, skyrocketing inflation, and higher prices triggered by Democrats’ out-of-control spending. This proposal, particularly the corporate tax increase, will be shouldered by the middle-class and small businesses, send jobs and businesses fleeing overseas, and gives America’s competitors an advantage.
Middle-class families will undoubtedly bear the burden of Democrats’ corporate income tax hike from 21 percent to 26.5 percent. The Joint Committee on Taxation found that over 66 percent of the tax increase will be borne by middle- and lower-income earners. This would come in the form of wages, employment, and higher utility bills. Further, the tax plan will be detrimental to more than 21 million mom-and-pop shops because of the elimination of the Small Business Deduction, which allows small business owners to deduct 20 percent of their income.
Additionally, Democrats are planning to expand the death tax. This supercharged second death tax will force family-owned businesses to sell off assets in order to pay a massive tax bill to the IRS. Eventually, these tax changes will cost one million jobs over the long term. The Biden Administration has claimed that the majority of small businesses will be exempt from his tax hikes – but the Tax Foundation has said that’s “misleading.” In fact, almost 900,000 small businesses could be hit with Democrats’ limitation of the passthrough deduction based on 2018 IRS data. To add insult to injury, the House Democrats’ proposal provides $80 billion over the next ten years for the Internal Revenue Service to hire 87,000 new agents, which will go after American families and businesses.
The plan would also increase our corporate taxes rates to higher levels than even Communist China with a combined state-federal rate of 30.9 percent. American companies would pay this higher global minimum tax for operating abroad while also paying Democrats’ higher corporate rate for operating at home—making America even less competitive and driving jobs, manufacturing, research, and investment overseas. According to the National Association of Manufacturers, the Biden Administration’s global minimum tax would destroy up to one million U.S. jobs.
And finally, this proposal would offer a slew of special tax breaks that only the wealthiest Americans can afford. This is a bad plan for working families and a bad plan for America.
• $12,500 tax credit – Tesla model 3 ($49,990 MSRP)
• $12,500 tax credit – Tesla Model Y ($60,990 MSRP)
• $1,350 tax credit – “home energy audit,” (designer doors and windows)
• $18,000 tax credit – hydrogen fuel cell system for home ($60,000 cost)
• $10,000 tax credit – geothermal heat system for a home ($30,000 cost)
• $52,550 tax savings – additional deduction by restoring the SALT tax shelter
President Biden inherited a southern border from President Trump that was secure. Unfortunately, since taking office, the Biden Administration has worked to open the border, not secure it. Our communities are less safe because the President has stopped building the wall, brought back Catch and Release, and got rid of the Remain in Mexico policy until the courts ordered it be reimplemented. It’s simple, border security is national security, and this Administration is dropping the ball. Recently, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced 208,887 border apprehensions at the southern border in August. That is a 317 percent increase from last August and the latest sign that President Biden and the Democrats’ open border policies have created one of the worst border crises in history.
• There were 208,887 border apprehensions in August – a 317 percent INCREASE from last year.
• Border apprehensions remain at a 21-year high in August.
• August was the second straight month with over 200,000 apprehensions.
• Over 1,200,000 illegal aliens have been apprehended at the border since February 1.
• In August, Joe Biden released 43,941 illegal immigrants into the U.S. In President Trump’s last full month in office, only 17 illegal immigrants were released into the U.S.
General Milley Concerns:
Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark Milley’s mismanagement of the Afghan withdrawal was nothing short of a disaster. This, coupled with new allegations that he went outside the civilian Chain of Command, further erode confidence in his leadership and could place him in violation of the Uniform Code of Military Justice. According to a new book authored by journalist Bob Woodward, General Milley allegedly spoke with Chinese military leadership and undermined the authority of the President. Given that these anecdotes have not been independently corroborated, my colleagues and I wrote to Secretary of Defense Austin urging him to launch a formal investigation to determine their veracity. The full letter can be found here.
The Week Ahead:
These past few weeks I’ve had the chance to travel throughout the Sixth District and meet with individual constituents in my offices, tour countless small businesses and manufacturing facilities, and participate in dozens of community events. It was so great to hear from folks and connect, and as I prepare to head back to DC next week, rest assured that I’ll voice residents’ concerns in Washington.
Unfortunately, what awaits me in DC is record levels of spending, historic tax increases, a bill that doesn’t truly address traditional infrastructure needs, and a potential increase in the debt limit. First and foremost, the $1 trillion infrastructure package that the Speaker has promised to bring to the Floor by September 27th allocates only a ridiculously small portion of funds for roads and bridges. The rest of the bill is chock-full of pork-barrel provisions added by Senators, including $50 million to combat ‘invasive plants,’ $12.7 million for ‘recreational boating safety,’ and the creation of a commission to improve gender diversity in the trucking industry, among many others. Further, the Democrats are still attempting to tie this $1 trillion bill to the larger $3.5 trillion “human infrastructure” package that does nothing but create even more big government programs. I have long advocated for the need to repair and expand our roadways across the Sixth District, including Interstate 81, but Green New Deal initiatives, universal pre-K, extensions to the child tax credit, and free community college are not infrastructure.
And how do Democrats plan to “pay” for these measures? First, they want to raise the debt limit so that they can borrow more money, which is incredibly irresponsible considering that the national debt stands around $29 trillion. This is nothing more than delaying the need to rein in spending and get our fiscal house in order. Perhaps even worse, however, is the fact that the left is now floating a massive, new $3 trillion tax plan as mentioned earlier. As we emerge from the crippling effects of COVID, forcing a corporate tax rate on the American people that is higher than even that of Communist China would be devastating to businesses and families alike.
These are just a few of the issues that will be addressed in the House in the coming weeks. But there’s much more work to be done, and rest assured I will continue to sound the alarm about the issues most important to the Sixth District. We must address the worsening crisis at our border, take steps to drive down inflation, continue working to rescue stranded Americans in Afghanistan, and combat the crime wave in our Nation’s cities. My Republican colleagues and I will not allow Speaker Pelosi to let these issues fall by the wayside.
As this District Work Period comes to an end, I very much enjoyed the opportunity to travel throughout the Sixth District this week meeting with folks across our region.
As of September 19, 2021, Virginia has had 836,140 total cases of COVID-19, including confirmed lab tests and clinical diagnoses, according to the Virginia Department of Health. The current death toll in the Commonwealth stands at 12,312. Further, according to the VDH’s COVID-19 vaccine data dashboard, as of September 19th, 5,806,630 people have been vaccinated with at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, and 5,019,175 people are fully vaccinated.
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.
Bobby Lee Williams (1940 – 2021)
Bobby Lee Williams, 81, of Chester Gap, Virginia passed away on Monday, September 20, 2021, at Warren Memorial Hospital in Front Royal, Virginia.
A funeral service will be held on Saturday, September 25, 2021, at 2 PM at Flint Hill Pentecostal Church with Pastor Jack Campbell and Pastor Bobby Jenkins officiating. Burial will follow at Williams Family Cemetery in Chester Gap, Virginia.
Mr. Williams was born on August 21, 1940, in Front Royal to the late Roy Williams and Laura Elkins Fiddler. He was also preceded in death by his sister, Ann Chadwell; two brothers, Earl Williams and George Williams and granddaughter, Kimberly Dawn Williams. He was a member of Flint Hill Pentecostal Church.
Survivors include his wife of 62 years, Rachel Wines Williams of Chester Gap; two sons, Michael Lee Williams and Ray Anthony Williams both of Chester Gap; a half brother, Charles Fiddler; four grandsons, Michael Lee Williams Jr., Zachary Williams, Woody Bell, and Wayne Bell; three granddaughters, Jennifer Swaim, Kimberly Williams, and Jessica Lamp and 13 great-grandchildren.
Pallbearers will be Michael Lee Williams Jr., Ryan Vaught, Kevin Thomas, Butch Hupman, Jake Swaim, and Robert Brown.
Honorary pallbearers will be Junior Vaught, Richie Vaught, Charles Rooney, Clarence Deavers, and Dwayne Showers.
The family will receive friends two hours prior to the service at the church.
Attorney General backs ‘common-sense’ approach to concealed carry laws
RICHMOND (September 21, 2021) – Attorney General Mark R. Herring today joined a coalition of 19 attorneys general in filing an amicus brief in the U.S. Supreme Court defending New York’s law regulating when individuals may obtain a license to carry firearms in public. Attorney General Herring and his colleagues argue that the Second Amendment does not provide Americans with an unrestricted right to carry loaded firearms in virtually all public places, but instead, in keeping with centuries of tradition, allows states to enact policies regulating public carry that are tailored to local public safety concerns and needs.
“States and localities must have the ability to enact gun safety measures that are tailored to their communities’ unique public safety needs and goals. Last year, I successfully got legislation passed that allows localities to restrict firearms at permitted events, something I had pushed for since 2017 when we lost the lives of three Virginians in the Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville,” said Attorney General Herring. “If the Supreme Court sides with the plaintiffs, in this case, it could mean that any American, including potentially dangerous individuals, can carry a loaded firearm at any time in virtually any public space. I am proud to stand with my fellow attorneys general in supporting states’ rights to enact commonsense gun safety policies that are tailored to a specific community’s needs and concerns.”
Last year, Attorney General Herring successfully helped get legislation passed that gives localities the ability to restrict firearms in a public space during a permitted event, making it easier for law enforcement officials to protect Virginians and keep their communities safe during large-scale events. Attorney General Herring introduced this legislation for a number of years following the fatal Unite the Right Rally in Charlottesville, but Republicans continuously blocked the measure in committee.
A one-size-fits-all approach to regulating public carry would take away the ability of state officials to address the unique public safety needs of their communities. In this case, New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, Inc. v. Bruen, the petitioners are asking the Supreme Court to grant Americans the right to carry loaded firearms anytime, in virtually any public place – disregarding the established practice that States and local governments may regulate the public carry of firearms in their jurisdictions.
In today’s brief, Attorney General Herring and his colleagues argue that throughout the history of this country, public carry regulations have varied from region to region, and that tradition actually goes back more than 700 hundred years in England and predates the founding of the United States. Regulations today and centuries ago “varied substantially between and within the States—the result of accountable policymakers enacting regulatory schemes tailored to local needs and conditions.”
Joining Attorney General Herring in filing today’s amicus brief are the attorneys general of California, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin, and the District of Columbia.
Local conservatives gather in Middletown to celebrate 234th anniversary of the US Constitution
Constitution Day with Winsome Sears turned out to be more about the Constitution than Winsome.
The program opened with the National Anthem sung by Brent Woodall. Reverend Al Woods followed with the Invocation.
The first of three highlights were provided by John Massoud, an Afghan descendant, who, with great emotion and sincerity, thanked the United States for the 20 years of service to the people of Afghanistan. More emphatically, John paid tribute to and mourned the loss of the 13 United States military members who were killed in Kabul on August 24, 2021.
John was followed by Liberty Man, Bishop Larry Johnson, who described the sacrifices and dedication of our Founders en route to our Constitution. Liberty Man was introduced by George Washington portrayed by, Dale Carpenter, who was appropriately attired in the uniform of the Continental Army.
In the absence of Winsome, former Senatorial candidate and Iraqi war veteran, Daniel Gade read a letter of endorsement of Winsome Sears from Ollie North. Gade followed with a history lesson comparing Presidential moral courage among Presidents Lincoln, Reagan, and Biden. He drew a stark contrast among them with President Biden getting a zero.
It was a pleasant evening hosted by the Wayside Inn and funded by LtGen Bill Keys and Bill Hammack. There was free pulled pork barbeque w/ trimmings and a cash bar. Music was provided by the Steel Peach band.
Front Royal man involved in Fauquier crash under investigation by State Police
Virginia State Police Trooper T. Ralls is investigating a two-vehicle crash in Fauquier County. The crash occurred on Tuesday, September 21, at 5:41 p.m. at the intersection of Route 17 (Winchester Rd) and Route 245 (Old Tavern Rd).
A 1995 Saturn SL2 was traveling West on Rt. 245 when it stopped at a stop sign. As the Saturn attempted to cross Rt. 17, it collided with a Northbound 2004 Volkswagen Jetta.
The driver of the Saturn, a 17-year-old male, of Warrenton, VA, and the passenger, a 16-year-old female, suffered life-threatening injuries in the crash. They were both transported to INOVA Fairfax Hospital for treatment. The male and female were wearing seatbelts.
The driver of the Volkswagen, a 40-year-old male, of Front Royal, VA, suffered minor injuries in the crash and was transported to Haymarket Medical Center for treatment. The male was wearing a seatbelt.
The crash remains under investigation.
County moves toward restructured EDA staffing in hopes of restored municipal cooperation – 6 CUPs approved, 5 for short-term tourist rentals
At its meeting of Tuesday evening, September 21st, the Warren County Board of Supervisors made the first official move toward an altered structure of its, and the Town’s, Economic Development Authority futures. That move was unanimous 5-0 approval, on a motion by Delores Oates, seconded by Walt Mabe, of County Administrator Ed Daley’s presentation of a “Request to Create a Warren County Office of Economic Development”. As reported in our recent story, County work session takes unexpected turn on EDA front – ‘Reunited’ operational option broached, the supervisors elected to have Daley forwarded an idea originally slated for Closed Session discussion at a September 14 work session, in open session that day. That idea is to have an Economic Development Director’s staff position under the municipal government umbrella, rather than as a staff position hired by the board of an independent Economic Development Authority (EDA), albeit an EDA board appointed by the municipal government or governments that created it.
As we understand it from subsequent conversations with Daley following last week’s supervisors’ work session, that in-house EDA director’s position would work in the best interest of both the county’s municipal governments, networking what it appears at this point will continue to evolve into two unilateral Town and County EDAs. Now theoretically, both the existing WC EDA and FREDA – the Front Royal EDA that is in the interview stage of establishing a board of directors – could create their own independent Offices of Economic Development with their own executive directors. But the impetus after last Thursday’s resurrected Town-County Liaison Committee meeting appears to be to work together to select an executive director who will work to the mutual benefit of both municipalities while networking with two EDA Boards of Directors.
Confusing? Perhaps – but it would cut payment of the six-figure salary range position in half if both municipalities could agree on the concept and a person to fill that conceptual central administrative position. For with a statewide trend toward regional EDA cooperation in a highly competitive economic development environment, what future would this community’s economic development have with dueling EDAs competing, not only with other regional governments’ economic development structures but with each other’s, particularly when the WC EDA has control of significant portions of economic development properties inside the town limits?
The answer to that question has, perhaps, already been given in the pending October 1st departure of WC EDA Executive Director Doug Parsons, to a county directly to our east where as one local observed upon hearing the news, “Warrenton isn’t suing Fauquier County” (or perhaps more accurately, its EDA).
And a move toward “us and us” from “us versus them” in County-Town relations was a reoccurring theme for several supervisors involved in last week’s first Liaison Committee meeting since January. Both Board Chair Cheryl Cullers and Delores Oates commented on the positive feeling they carried out of that meeting that the deteriorated relationship featuring hostile litigation involving the Town and existing WC EDA, and canceled face-to-face meetings of elected officials on matters of mutual interest, might be turning a corner. Of course, as the third county board member at that Liaison Committee meeting, Walt Mabe, wondered during it: Why can’t we return to one, re-tooled EDA working to both the County’s and Town’s benefit, with one executive director not alleged to have had their hands in both municipalities’ economic development pockets?
And in a loosely related item, as part of the September 24th WC EDA monthly board meeting, departing Executive Director Doug Parsons’ last, the agenda includes the information that the long-awaited 2018 and 2019 EDA audits have been completed by the contracted auditing company and are awaiting EDA Board approval. Stay tuned for more developments on the auditing front. – Maybe the completed audits could even establish exactly how much of whose money went where and is owed to who by whom, negating the necessity for the continued dueling Town-WC EDA civil litigations. As previously reported, the sitting council ignored then-Mayor Gene Tewalt’s 2019 advice to accept the offer of the WC EDA to sit down with accountants rather than attorneys to follow the money to establish exactly who was owed what on the back end of the EDA’s now $62-million-dollar financial scandal.
But off that “movie script”, in other business the supervisors approved six Conditional Use Permit (CUP) requests Tuesday, five for Short-Term Tourist Rentals, and one for alterations to a Kennel Permit. See all these discussions, public comments, and votes in the County video; and see the meeting agenda cover page with the full list of CUP application public hearings linked here: