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Bob Thomas Vies for Crisp’s Seat

Delegate Mark Cole (R-88, Stafford, Fredericksburg) discusses political points with Bob Thomas (left) after he threw his hat into the ring for George Washington District Supervisor. (Marty van Duyne/For

By Marty van Duyne

Falmouth, Va. –– Crowds gathered at Amy’s Café in Falmouth on Thursday night to hear Bob Thomas‘ platform.

Thomas threw his hat into the ring to vie for Stafford County’s George Washington District seat being vacated by Democrat Harry Crisp who plans to retire at the end of his term in December.

Current district supervisors were in attendance to show their support of the first time candidate and Marine Corps Veteran.

The Stafford resident partnered with another fellow Marine and established Capriccio Software in 2006.

As a business owner he supports the business friendly atmosphere in the county, improved transportation and education, and the cultural resources of the area.

In his campaign announcement speech, Thomas credited a video of a public meeting on the county’s now defunct Business and Professional Licensing tax, and the support of Falmouth Supervisor Susan Stimpson as the impetus for his foray into politics.

Marty van Duyne is an award winning photographer and journalist.

Feds Approve Prince William Redistricting

Map of approved voting precincts in eastern Prince William County.

Prince William County, Va. –– The federal government has approved Prince William County’s decennial redistricting plan.

The plan, which transformed the Dumfries Magisterial District to the Potomac District, was passed by the county’s Board of Supervisors in April. Afterward, it was forwarded by law to the U.S. Department of Justice for final approval.

“The approval of the County’s redistricting plan is the culmination of a process that involved the entire community. The Board heard input from the Human Rights Commission, the NAACP, various community groups and many individuals, said Prince William Board Chairman Corey A. Stewart. “Clearly this Board worked diligently to make certain we had district lines that were fair and equitable to the demographics and population of Prince William County, and the Department of Justice agreed.”

The plan modified the counties seven magisterial districts — which help to define polling places — to account for population growth over the past 10 years.  Prince William’s population grew 43 percent since 2000, from 289,000 to 404,000 residents, according to U.S. Census data.

Dudenhefer: PWC, Stafford Share Common Problems

Stafford Sheriff Charles E. Jett (left) and Speaker of Virginia’s House of Delegates (right) introduces Mark Dudenhefer (center) who vying to fill the seat of Virginia’s 2nd House District seat. (Mary Davidson/

North Stafford, Va. –– He described it like a summer afternoon in his native Louisiana, where hot days give way afternoon storms that bring heavy rain.

But as showers cleared, from a soggy tent Saturday afternoon at the Quantico Corporate Center in North Stafford, that county’s top elected official announced he is seeking a promotion. Mark Dudenhefer wants to be the next member of Virginia’s House of Delegates in the 2nd District, filling a seat that was shifted this spring to the Potomac Communities from Southwest Virginia during the decennial redistricting process.

Serving on Stafford’s Board of Supervisors since 2006 and its chairman since 2010, the Republican noted he helped to pass the county’s first comprehensive development plan in the past 22-years and brought civility back to a Board once rife with arguments between Board members.

“I entered [politics] following a long military career because of a dreadful family tragedy. It created in me a passion in me to serve in a different way to make life better for my friends, family and neighbors and most of all to direct my energy to making our roads safe,” said Dudenhefer.

His youngest daughter, Emily, was killed in a car crash on a two-lane road Stafford County prior to his first term on the Board. It pushed him to run for public office, and on Saturday, he said fixing the region’s transportation problems remains a personal goal.

In addition to widening Stafford’s many two-lane roads, also touted widening Jefferson Davis Highway (U.S. 1) from four to six lanes from the Occoquan River in Woodbridge to Garrisonville Road (Va. 610) in North Stafford, expanding service on Virginia Railway Express and allowing drivers to access what will be Interstate 95’s High Occupancy Toll lanes from Dumfries Road (Va. 234) when construction is scheduled to begin as soon as next year.

In addition to Dudenhefer’s Republican-learning home turf of North Stafford, the 2nd House District also includes many democratic precincts in Prince William County east of U.S. 1 like Potomac, Swans Creek and Featherstone which in 2009 voted against Gov. Robert F. McDonnell who beat out his democratic opponent with nearly 60 percent of the vote statewide.

Right now, the Dudenhefer is running unopposed but says he may face a democratic challenger, as well as a Republican challenger that would force a primary.

“I want to assure the people of both eastern Prince William and northern Stafford counties that if elected I will represent the interests of all who reside inside these boundaries. We share common problems, common interests and common values,” said Dudenhefer.

Officials Want Metro to Woodbridge on New Map

Washington Metro System (Courtesy: Planet Ware)

Woodbridge, Va. –– Officials want Metro to show riders they plan to someday extend system to the Potomac Communities.

In a letter to the Washington Metropolitan Transportation Authority today, Virginia State Sen. Toddy Puller (D-36, Prince William, Stafford), Del. Luke Torian (D-52, Dumfires, Woodbridge) and Del. Scott Surrovel (D-44, South Fairfax) urged the agency to include an extension of the system’s Blue Line to Woodbridge and Yellow Line to Fort Belvoir on a newly redesigned subway system map that will be used by riders.

The politicians say residents along the Richmond Highway (U.S. 1) corridor are crying out for an extension of the Yellow Line because of the military’s BRAC relocation of personnel to Fort Belvoir, which is expected to bring at least 19,000 new employees to the garrison.

A Blue Line extension would allow employees who are being relocated from the National Geospatial Defense Facility in Rosslyn to the Engineering Proving Grounds on Fort Belvoir to use the rail instead of being forced to drive on Interstate 95, the letter stated.

“It would serve the fastest growing part of Fairfax County over the last 10 years around the former Lorton Prison site. Extending the Blue Line to Woodbridge and Dale City would spur revitalization to the Route 1 corridor, bring relief to people with some of the longest commutes in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area and take cars off the constantly clogged Interstate I-95,” the letter stated.

A $2 million transit study approved by Gov. Robert F. McDonnell will examine transportation improvements in the area between the Woodrow Wilson Bridge and Quantico Marine Corps Base. These three officials hope a Metro rail extension will be largely considered during this study.

The letter comes as Metro announced it would redesign it’s 40-year-old system map to reflect the addition of the system’s new Silver Line to Tysons Corner, and eventually Dulles Airport.

An extension of Metro’s Blue Line to Woodbridge quickly became a campaign issue in 2009, but officials never said how they would fund such an extension.

The idea was supported by then Delegate Paul Nichols, but he went onto lose to Del. Richard Anderson (R-51, Lake Ridge) who said he supported providing additional funding to Virginia Railway Express rather than Washington’s Metro system.

As the Metro map is set for a redesign, Greater Greater Washington has invited its readers to submit their ideas for a newly redesigned map. You can see those designs here.

Caddigan Keeps Vision for Triangle

Potomac District Supervisor Maureen Caddigan speaks with supporters during her campaign kick-off event Sunday in Montclair. (Uriah Kiser/

Dumfries, Va. –– Maureen Caddigan in her fifth bid for the Prince William County Board of Supervisors set her top campaign priorities Sunday.

Education, public safety, transportation and economic development –– in that order –– are at the top of the list as the Republican who currently represents the newly renamed Potomac District held her campaign kick-off at Georgio’s Restaurant in Montclair to a standing-room only crowd.

Caddigan told her supporters that promises made during her campaigns are promises kept, and touted the ongoing $68 million project to widen U.S. 1 at the National Museum of the Marine Corps in Triangle.

Since Prince William County purchased the areas alongside the highway and razed many of the gas stations, fast food restaurants and other businesses for a wider U.S. 1, the area has garnered a reputation as a desolate construction site.

“I know it’s been an inconvenience for many of you, but [the widening] should be completed by next spring and it will be lovely,” said Caddigan. The project slowed when crews encountered difficulty relocating underground utility lines in the area.

Hoping to mirror the success of nearby Occoquan, a developer originally planned to build a village-like neighborhood on Brady’s Hill Road in Triangle near the Marine museum. That developer is now selling the land, Caddigan explained, and she added whoever buys the land must develop it to the county’s specifications of street lined shops and large, attractive buildings.

Caddigan also touted a new library that will be built in Montclair 25 years after its inception. It will be located behind the Lake Montclair shopping center and will include an historic barn once used to house slaves.

The new library will be built with funds included in the recently approved FY 2012 budget, which also included cost of living raises for Prince William Government employees –– a move Caddigan defended despite hard economic times.

“Some people say there are a lot of people who aren’t getting a pay raise. [County employees] haven’t had a pay raise in three years, and for our public safety employees; we don’t want them moving to Fairfax or some other area,” said Caddigan.

The raises are aimed at helping county employees offset the new retirement rules for the Virginia Retirement System set forth by Gov. Robert F. McDonnell, where employees will now have to put five percent of their salary into the system to be eligible to participate in the retirement program.

“We thought of our employees and sometimes we are criticized about that, and I’m sorry that is the case,” added Caddigan.

Caddigan is currently running unopposed, and voters will have a chance to voice their opinions at the polls November 8.

Colgan Will Seek Reelection

Sen. Charles Colgan (D-29th, Manassas, Prince William)

Prince William County, Va. –– Sen. Charles J. Colgan (D, 28 – Manassas, Prince William) is going to make another go of it.

After word the long serving state senator would step down this year, the 84-year-old announced yesterday that couldn’t be further from the truth.

“I’m going to give it one more shot,” he said. “I talked to my family and a lot of my friends — I’ve gotten literally dozens of phone calls. I walked into McDonald’s and a man said, ‘I’ve been a Republican all my life and you’re my favorite Democrat. Don’t you dare quit.’ ” he told the Washington Post.

In both 2003 and 2007 Colgan said he would step down from his position which he was elected to in 1975.

Last week, he told that he was beginning to feel his age and that he would like to spend more time with his family.

Colgan will seek reelection this fall, and voters will have the chance to put him back in office Nov. 8.

Angle to Vie for Griffis-Widewater District

Stafford County, Va. –– Keith Angle says it’s his time to be elected to the Board of Supervisors.

The 36-year resident of Stafford County says he wants to be the next conservative politician to represent the Griffis-Widewater District, unseating Democratic Supervisor Bob Woodson.

Woodson is the first African-American to serve on Stafford’s Board.

“I don’t want unseat the first African-American on the Stafford Board, I want to unseat a liberal Democrat,” said Angle.

Angle said he’s not satisfied with Woodson’s voting record, but was unable to say which issue or ordinance Woodson supported that irked him the most. In a press release, Angle remarked “consistent ‘no’ votes by the incumbent threatens to stifle the positive trajectory of the current Board of Supervisors.”

Angle says the county needs to continue to attract new business, and praised the county’s economic development office, as well as the Board of Supervisors Republican majority’s efforts to bring new business to the county.

Having never held a political office, he’s hoping serving on the Board will better provide him with knowledge of the issues facing residents.

“After about a year on the board, I will be able to better answer questions about key issues facing residents,” said Angle. “I am going to have to get out on the streets, talk to people and let them know what I’m about.”

In a press release, Angle outlined funding public safety, transportation improvements and controlling regional growth as key issues in his campaign.

Angle is married to his wife of 39-years, Ruth, and has two adult children who live out of state.

He spent most of his life working on and installing two-way radio systems in Fredericksburg, King George, Spotsylvania and Stafford counties, and retired in 2007.

Virginia residents will have have their at the polls Nov. 8.

Colgan Considers Retirement, Again

Sen. Charles Colgan (D-29th, Manassas, Prince William)

Update: 11 a.m.
Sen. Chuck Colgan (D, 29 – Manassas, Prince William) says he will make an announcement next week as to whether or not he’ll retire as the President Pro Tempore of Virginia’s Senate.

He’s going to take the Memorial Day weekend to work out some family issues and spend time with his wife, who would like to see more of him, said Colgan.

“I’m 85-years-old, and about that time you begin to feel your age. I still think I would make a good offering to the commonwealth, but right now I am going to work out some family issues,” said Colgan.

Colgan says he has an obligation to speculation of his retirement behind him and make an official announcement sometime next week.

Colgan first considered retirement in 2003, but was asked by then Gov. Mark Warner to run for reelection to keep the seat in Democratic hands. Gov. Timothy M. Kaine during his term approached the verteran legislator and asked again if he would run.

“A campaign is long, hard hours, and that’s something that we are going to have to consider when we think about this next election season,” said Colgan.

The senator is up for reelection this fall.

Prince William County, Va. –– Prince William County and Manassas’ state senator, Charles Colgan, is going to retire, reports indicate.

The political blog, Not Larry Sabato, is reporting the President Pro Tempore of the Virginia Senate will retire this year.

An announcement has not been made as to who will replace the long-serving Democrat.

Colgan, 84, was elected to office in 1975 and has served ever since.

Colgan’s 29th District includes Manassas and much of Prince William County.

Among his list of legislative successes is the highway interchange at Prince William Parkway and Nokesville Road (Va. 28) outside Manassas.

Colgan help to found Colgan Air, a passenger airline based out of Manassas.

Stafford Seeks 7 New Deputies

Stafford County, Va. –– Sheriff Charles E. Jett wants more deputies on the streets to engage in community policing. To do that, he’ll need at least seven new deputies.

The Stafford County Board of Supervisors unanimously approved his request to seek grant funding for the new deputies.

Jett pointed out a post-911 study revealed law enforcement officers should spend at least 40 percent of their time on duty working in communities, building stronger relationships.

The $1.4 million, three-year grant from the Department of Justice would include funding for the new officers, and would include annual three-percent salary increases.

After the grant term is up, county taxpayers would be asked to foot the bill for the officers for at least 12 months at an estimated cost of $508,000, according to county documents.

“Because of the economy, I’ve presented to you each [previous] year in the budget where we are at and that the need still exists for the positions, but understanding the fiscal climate and understanding those positions could not be funded, but the current need still exists” Jett told the Board.

The sheriff’s department has not added any new positions in the past three years, according to Jett.

“So another way to put this is, if you don’t get this grant you’ll be back here next year asking us for money,” asked Supervisor Paul Milde, III of Jett.

“That’s correct, Mr. Milde,” Jett replied.

Supervisors also said it was important to hire new deputies to keep up with the county’s growth rate.

“I am going to support this because of the fact that we have not been able to hire any deputies in 09, 10 and 11, and that is one of our priorities,” said Supervisor Susan Stimpson.

Stuart and Howell Announce Reelection Bid

Sen. Richard Stuart (R, Va. –– 28)

By Marty van Duyne

Falmouth, Va. ––  Republican Sen. Richard Stuart and House Speaker Del. Bill Howell announced their bid for reelection Wednesday.

A full house crowd braved a deluge of rain and hail to show their support for the cheer on the 28th district Senator and Delegate.

Family and patriotism head list of priorities for Stuart

Stuart introduced his family and told the gathered assemblage that quality of life for all Virginians was a driving force in his actions.

He was responsible for legislation banning “robo call” solicitations. Since the enactment of the law, many other states have followed suit.

“I wrote that silly little bill that allows you to fly the American Flag in your front yard without the HOA being able to tell you to take it down,” the Senator and Marine Corps Reserve Veteran told supporters. “I say it’s a silly little bill. But it’s not for those of us who are patriots.”

He co-wrote a bill to provide tax relief for disabled veterans and said it is important for us to support those that have served and given so much for our country.

Seen as somewhat of a lone wolf, Stuart said, “I define myself as someone that puts you first.”
At times that effort has put him at odds with his own party such as his recent push for a strong fiscal policy.

“But I have to do what’s right,” said Stuart.

Recognizing that residents spend an insurmountable amount of time in traffic, the Senator co-sponsored the House transportation bill that will help fund efforts to fix problems without adding to taxes.

His efforts also include adding Stafford County to the George Washington Toll Road Authority.

In that same vein, he introduced legislation that allows VDOT maintenance of right of way’s by nonviolent criminals on suspended sentences or probation.

Known to be tough on crime Stuart sponsored legislation to get synthetic marijuana off the shelves of stores where it was previously legally sold to children.

He also introduced the Blue Alert Program that will be administered by the State Police in cases when an officer of the law is missing, seriously injured, or killed in the line of duty under suspicious circumstances.

Stuart was the recipient of the 2010 Virginia Sheriff’s Association’s Legislator of the Year award and he acknowledged Stafford Sheriff Charles E. Jett in the audience.

A staunch supporter of the disabled, the senator has sponsored, written, or co-sponsored numerous laws to support persons with disabilities and their families.

In 2011 he sponsored legislation to remove personal privacy information from windshield placards. In 2010 he sponsored legislation to allow parents to recover attorney fees in cases brought before the court in support of their child in a special education program for children with disabilities. And in 2008 he co-sponsored Del. Mark Cole’s (R-88, Stafford, Fredericksburg) legislation to allow Service Dogs in public schools.

The senator has also supported legislation to support and protect agriculture and the Chesapeake Bay watershed.

Stuart told the assemblage that Virginia has again been rated as one of the top places to work and raise a family and he wants to ensure the area remains in that top ranking.

“It’s all about the quality of life for people I represent,” said Stuart. “I believe there is still work to be done.”

The senator supports reining in government spending, bringing more jobs to the area, addressing transportation issues, and strengthening our families.

“I humbly ask for your support as I seek a second term,” said Stuart.

Howell optimistic about adding party seats

Howell announced his bid for re-election and recognized legislators in attendance and Virginia 1st District Rep. Rob Wittman’s Chief of Staff Mary Springer.

Stafford officials included Garrisonville District Board Supervisor Mark Dudenhefer, Aquia Supervisor Paul Milde, Falmouth Supervisor Susan Stimpson, and Hartwood Supervisor Gary Snellings.

He also acknowledged Stafford Commonwealth’s Attorney Daniel Chicester who with 40 years in office is the second longest serving Commonwealth Attorney in Virginia.

Howell told his constituents that the redistricting plan has moved forward.

“We are going on the presumption that the new districts will be the same ones we have in November,” said Howell.

He said he is optimistic about gaining a majority in the Senate.

Howell said with the newly formed 2nd House District that includes part of Stafford and Prince William Counties he believes the party can pick up additional seats in the House.

Dudenhefer announced that he would be running for the 2nd District seat earlier this month.

Howell reflected on past successes and thanked his constituents saying, “We couldn’t do it without your help.”

The 54th Speaker of the House has served the 28th District since 1987. Details on his platform can be found at

For more information about Sen. Richard Stuart visit

Marty van Duyne is an award winning independent photographer and journalist.

Jenkins Touts Transit, Sidewalks in Reelection Bid

Dale City, Va. –– John D. Jenkins will make another run at the Prince William County Board of Supervisors.

The Democrat has served the Neabsco District, which includes much of Dale City, for 28 years.

Though the average tax bill will go up over the next year, Jenkins says he’s worked over the years to lower taxes, built new schools, add officers to the county’s police department and helped to build sidewalks from his distort to Manassas.

“As you know, tax assessments went up in the county. Whenever you have a bigger base to assess you have to put things in proper perspective, knowing that one tax rate today a $1.20 [per $100 of the assessed real estate value] will raise one in which we are able improve the quality of life in the county,” said Jenkins.

The average tax bill is expected to rise $78, but county officials say taxes are lower when accounting for inflation.

Jenkins, a retired Army Lt. Colonel, has focused much of his attention over the years on transportation projects. He helped start the county’s successful road bond projects that saw the construction of Prince William Parkway, as well as other road improvements.

He helped found Virginia Railway Express, and he currently serves as Chairman of the Potomac and Rappahannock Transportation Commission.

“I’m going to run on my record, and I think my record is a good, solid example of my accomplishments,” said Jenkins.

His wife, Ernestine Jenkins, will once again serve as his campaign manager. For many years, she has been involved in the community and has worked to help make Dale City’s annual Fourth of July Parade one of the largest in the region.

Howell, Stuart Choose Falmouth to Announce Reelection Bids

Sen. Richard Stuart (R, Va. –– 28)

Falmouth, Va. –– The Speaker of Virginia’s House of Representatives and a State Senator on Wednesday will kick off their reelection bids in Falmouth.

State Senator Richard Stuart (R-28) and Del. William Howell (R-28) announce their reelection bids at  7 p.m. at the Stafford County Republican Headquarters at Butler Road (Va. 218) and Cambridge Street (U.S. 1).

Howell was first elected to the General Assembly in 1987 and was sworn in as Speaker of the House in 2003.

Stuart was elected to his first term in 2008, and recently saw his district expanded to include a larger portion of Prince William County.

Redistricting Could Cost Virginia $10 Million

By Tracy Kennedy
Capital News Service

Richmond, Va. –– Now that the governor has approved the General Assembly’s redistricting plans, the State Board of Elections must find millions of dollars to implement the new maps.

“They split over 500 precincts, and we have to equip them,” said Charles Judd, chairman of the State Board of Elections. He estimates that it would cost about $20,000 to equip each of the 500-plus new precincts. That would put the total price tag at more than $10 million.

“This is what you’d call an unfunded mandate,” Judd said.

He said federal funds may be available to help localities prepare for the fall elections, when all 100 delegates and 40 senators in the General Assembly are up for election. If the federal funds don’t come through, localities will have to raise the money themselves.

For the past month, legislators have been trying to redraw political boundaries to account for population changes reflected in the 2010 census. For example, because of population growth in Northern Virginia, that region merited an additional Senate seat and three more House seats.

The General Assembly approved plans last month, but Gov. Bob McDonnell vetoed them, saying they split too many communities. So the assembly took another crack.

On April 28, lawmakers passed House Bill 5005, containing revised maps. The following day, McDonnell signed the bill.

“It is a great improvement over the previous plan that I vetoed,” the governor said in a statement.

Voting on HB 5005 was delayed after the unexpected death of the House clerk, Bruce Jamerson. After memorializing Jamerson in a series of commendation bills and recessing until April 27, the House voted 90-8 to pass the bill. The next day, the Senate approved it on a 32-5 vote.

The General Assembly still must redraw congressional districts

Dudenhefer Announces House Run

Mark Dudenhefer

Mark Dudenhefer

North Stafford, Va. –– An open Virginia House of Delegates seat has a contender.

Stafford County Board of Supervisors Chairman Mark Dudenhefer announced he will vie for the newly shifted 2nd District House of Delegates seat.

The district encompasses much of Northern Stafford, Quantico, and Woodbridge east of Jefferson Davis Highway (U.S. 1) north to Belmont Bay.

The district was shifted to Northern Virginia from the southwest portion of the state after population there declined, and more residents moved into to the Potomac Communities.

“I know how to keep taxes low, reduce government and create jobs because I have already done it in Stafford County,” said Dudenhefer in a press release.

A Republican and retired Marine Colonel after 30 years of service, Dudenhefer won a position on the Stafford County Board of Supervisors in 2006.

Improving transportation in the region was a focus of his campaign following the death of his 17-year-old daughter, Emily, who was killed in a car crash in Stafford in 2004.

Seven years later, Dudenhefer now serves as the Chairman of the Stafford Board which serves the county’s nearly 129,000 residents. He’s recently tackled issues like hiring and retaining fire and rescue personnel, the county’s mandatory redistricting process, defining where urban growth will happen in Stafford, and stood with Virginia’s transportation secretary Sean Connaughton (the former Prince William County Board of Supervisors Chairman) to herald construction of new commuter parking in North Stafford.

Dudenhefer said he was approached by Virginia House Speaker Del. Bill Howell about seeking the newly shifted House seat.

“We need more conservatives to stand firm in the House of Delegates, and I’ll be a reliable ally to Speaker Bill Howell as we keep Virginia the best place in the country to conduct business through low taxes and less government intervention.”

So far, no other candidate has come forward to run against the Republican.

Stafford Moves Polls, Creates New Precincts

Stafford, Va. –– With little public input over an 18-week process to define new political boundaries, Stafford officials Tuesday night approved the county’s redistricting plan.

The plan identifies for the next 10 years the political boundaries that will be used to elect the county Board of Supervisors and School Board, as well as defines voting precincts for every election.

Three new precincts (one in the George Washington District, one in the Griffis-Widewater District and the other in the Aquia District) were created, and five polling places were moved to new locations.

Each of the county’s seven election districts now have four precincts, except for the Garrisonville District – one of the most populated but smallest magisterial district in terms of land size –– which only has three.

The magisterial districts are based on population and, by law, must be redrawn every 10 years to reflect population change.

Population in Stafford County over the past 10 years increased by 39.5 percent to nearly 129,000 residents, say officials. The new magisterial maps were drawn to include a maximum of 18,423 people in each district.

Prior to the vote, Griffis-Widewater District Supervisor Bob Woodson spoke out against a plan to place two of three sections of the county’s affluent Aquia Harbour neighborhood in the Aquia District, removing them from his district.

Now that the plans have been approved they must go before the U.S. Department of Justice for final approval, as part of the voting rights act of 1964.

May Launches Re-Election Bid, Defends Budget Vote

Occoquan District Supervisor Mike May held a fundraiser in Lake Ridge on Sunday to kick off his 2011 reelection bid. (Mary Davidson/

Lake Ridge, Va. –– Occoquan Supervisor Mike May held his reelection campaign fundraiser on Sunday.

Known as “Mike-O-D-Mayo” because it’s held right before Cinco-De-Mayo, the event was the kick start to his bid to keep his seat on the Prince William County Board of Supervisors.

About 100 people came to the event to cheer on the unopposed incumbent who last week got high marks with conservatives when he was one of two county supervisors who voted against a higher tax rate for the county.

“I didn’t just vote no on the proposed budget. I gave it some deep thought and analysis and came to the determination that we could have funded all of the budget initiatives, including construction of two new libraries, the two-percent county employee merit raises, fully funded the schools, added new police officers and new social services positions at a lower tax rate than that which was ultimately adopted,” said May.

Prince William County’s 2012 $890 million budget passed last week and takes effect July 1. It is expected to raise the average tax bill by $78, as it will tax $1.204 per $100 of the assessed property value.

May said his budget alternative would have taxed residents only $1.186 per $100 of the assessed property value.

“We had a couple of different options: do you want to fund the county executive’s proposed budget and see if it works out, or do you raise the tax rate higher than necessary to fund additional capital projects and positions this year?  It makes more sense to wait to see how the economy plays out and then provide additional funding for projects next year if it improves. There are signs the economy is returning to normal levels but the signals are mixed, and the last thing we want to do is add new county positions only to come back next year and have to cut them because of budget shortfalls,” said May.

While residents’ tax bills will increase, officials maintain that when adjusted for inflation they will be lower than previous years.

If reelected, this would mark May’s second term on the Board. He replaced current Board Chair Corey A. Stewart who represented the Occoquan District prior to May.

May, a practicing attorney in Arlington, was elected to the Board in 2007 and, since 2010, has served as the Vice Chairman of the Board.

Prior to serving as a supervisor, May served on the county’s planning commission and Prince William County Social Services Board.

McDonnell to Approve Redistricting Plan

It appears the Potomac Communities will get a new Virginia House of Delegates seat.

Gov. Robert F. McDonnell will sign off on a compromise between the Virginia Senate and House of Representatives that would shift the state’s 2nd House District to the Potomac Communities.

“I thank the General Assembly for passing this new redistricting plan. I will sign this legislation as soon as it reaches my desk. The plan as passed does address most of the criteria I outlined in my veto letter, and ensures that the elected members of the legislative branch fulfill their constitutional obligation to draw our electoral lines every ten years,” stated McDonnell in a statement.

Once the governor signs it the maps will be sent to the U.S. Department of Justice for final approval under the Voting Rights Act of 1964. McDonnell earlier this month vetoed a plan that would have, among other things, split Prince William County across six Virginia Senate districts.

The new map does not split up the county as drastically, but does have changes in store for the Potomac Communities.

Mount Vernon Senator Toddy Puller (D-36) would still keep a majority of eastern Prince William County, but would pick up portions of the Griffs-Widewater and Rockhill districts in Stafford County, areas now represented by Republican Senator Richard Stuart (R-28, Montross).

Stuart would pick up additional portions of western Prince William County has part of the new plan.

The shifted 2nd House District does not have an incumbent, but has raised the eyebrows of some local politicians – like Stafford County Board of Supervisor’s Republican Chairman Mark Dudenhefer  –– who would has expressed an interest in trying to fill the seat.

The district will be shifted here from Southwest Virginia after population there declined.

Also on the House side, Del. Richard Anderson (R-51, Lake Ridge) would also add portions of western Prince William County to his sprawling district.

Del. Luke Torian (D-52, Dumfries) will pick up Occoquan as part of the plan, which would be vacated by Anderson.

By law, political districts must be redrawn every 10 years following the Census to reflect population change.

“Tito the Builder” Wants to Run for Office, But Where?

Tito “the builder” Munoz is exploring the possibility of running for state-level political office.

By Kristina Schnack Kotlus

A Dumfries area man describes himself as the “American Dream” political candidate.

Tito the Builder, as he’s known, now hosts his own talk radio program, “America Eres Tu,” and is an active member of the Prince William Republican Committee, according to his website.

Two weeks ago, Munoz launched a political action committee, Tito PAC, to raise money for a possible run for state office.

Munoz, a contractor, became something of a local celebrity after he was recognized during a campaign rally for 2008 Republican hopeful John McCain, at the Prince William County Government Center.

“2011 is crucial for Virginia”, said Munoz,” I’ll concentrate on Virginia: jobs, regulations of small business, and opportunities for more Americans to develop the economy.”

Munoz also wants to address the number one hot-button issue for Northern Virginia residents: traffic.

“I have firsthand knowledge of what it takes to build a road…how to make it work smoothly” Munoz explained, saying his skills as a contractor gives him advantage over other politicians when it comes to deciding what types and where transportation infrastructure should be built.

Munoz is also concerned with the prices Virginians are paying at the pump, especially the pain felt at the pump for small business owners, and has suggested drilling for oil off of Virginia’s coastline.

On the slumped economy, Munoz small businesses should be empowered and suggests eliminating superfluous paperwork necessary to establish a small business.

Governor Robert F. McDonnell seemed to agree when last year he enhanced the Virginia Business One Stop program, launched in 2009.

In the realm of education, Munoz looks to his Colombian roots for inspiration.  “I come from a family of teachers. In Columbia the system is different.  I could choose any public school I wanted to attend as long as my grades and conduct were acceptable,” said Munoz.

As political districts lie now, Munoz would have the option of vying for the Republican nomination for the Virginia House of Delegates 52nd District seat, now currently held by Democrat Luke Torian.

Munoz, like other republican’s, has expressed interest in what would be a newly shifted House district that would encompass portions of North Stafford, Quantico and Woodbridge. That district, known as the 2nd District, would be shifted from Southwest Virginia to the Potomac Communities after population declined there over the past 10 years.

Virginia’s redistricting plans are still being finalized in the Senate and House of Delegates, and Gov. McDonnell will have the final approval.

Anderson Eyes 52nd District

Cleveland Anderson

Dumfries, Va. –– A familiar face in Dumfries business will make his first run for the General Assembly.

Cleveland Anderson is expected to announce Friday in s press release he’ll seek the republican nomination for Virginia House of Delegate’s 52nd District.

Anderson earlier this month told he was considering a run for what would be a newly shifted political district in the Potomac Communities, the 2nd House District which would include portions of North Stafford, Quantico and Woodbridge.

According to Anderson’s website, the aspiring politician owns Vincent and Vincent Hair Salon on U.S. 1 in Dumfries and has raised his children in Prince William County.

Anderson’s biography states he’s a life-long Virginia resident, as well as a realtor and managing partner of the shopping center that his hair salon is located in.

The man who won the House of Delegates seat in 2009 in the adjacent 51st District, Richard Anderson, says he doesn’t think having another Republican with the same last name running in the next district next to his will be a problem.

“Voters are smart, and they are articulate, and they will easily be able to tell the difference between me and Cleveland. They’ll also know that Cleveland has his own ideas about what’s best for the 51st,” said Anderson.

If another Republican candidate steps forward, Anderson would have to face him or her in a primary election August 23.

Right now, there have been no other Republican’s who have expressed interest in challenging Torian, a popular Democrat and pastor of the First Mount Zion Baptist Church in Dumfries.

This story has been corrected. This election season marks the first time Cleveland Anderson has run for political office.

Corey Stewart Talks About Senate Ambitions


Prince William County Board of Supervisors Chairman Corey A. Stewart.

Prince William Board Chairman Corey Stewart says he’s interested in running for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Jim Webb.

In an interview with the Richmond Times-Dispatch, the Republican says immigration and lowering government spending will be key issues in any senate campaign he would mount.

Representing the more than 400,000 residents in Prince William has also prepared him for the challenge, he said.

If Stewart runs, he would face former Republican Senator and Virginia Governor George Allen.

During the last senate election in 2006, Allen lost to Webb in Prince William County by 6,000 votes, and Stewart said he won his seat as chairman in a special Board of Supervisors election that same day by about the same number of votes –– proving his popularity with county residents, he said.

If he was selected as the Republican nominee, he would face another former Virginia governor, Timothy M. Kaine, who has spent the past two years as the head of the Democratic National Committee chairman.

Stewart told the Times-Dispatch he was not impressed with Kaine, and that voters would be “hard pressed” to find an accomplishment of Kaine’s from the time he was governor and during his time at DNC chairman.

Stewart is a trade lawyer who works in Washington and lives in Woodbridge.

He was elected to Prince William’s Board of County Supervisors as the Occoquan representative in 2003. Re-elected in 2007, Stewart quickly gained some national attention as he took the immigration fight to the streets of the county.

That year, the Board passed a resolution that allowed police to ask for the legal presence ID from anyone they suspected to be an illegal immigrant.

That policy was later amended weeks later to avoid possible racial profiling lawsuits, and now police are allowed to check immigration statues of only those who are arrested.

Stewart is also running for reelection to the County Board of Supervisor’s chairman’s seat.

Babur Lafeef, a Democrat and doctor from Woodbridge, is running against him.

Torian, Anderson Get High Marks from Chamber

Del. Luke Torian talks about recent legislative successes with Sen. Toddy Puller, Sen. Chuck Colgan (not pictured), and Del. Richard Anderson.

Woodbridge, Va. –– Two House of Delegates members in the Potomac Communities got high marks on a review from the Prince William Chamber of Commerce.

At the chamber’s annual Legislative Report Card event April 15, Del. Luke Torian (D-52, Dumfries) got a 92 rating and an overall 93 percent in the scoring process.

Del. Richard Anderson (R-51, Lake Ridge, Woodbridge) also received a 92 rating and an overall 91 percent average.

The scorecard included items covering transportation, priority business legislation for the chamber and its members, economic development, as well as ranked their support for general business practices supported by the Prince William Chamber.

The chamber gave Torian low marks for supporting mandatory health insurance coverage for children with autism spectrum disorder, as well as supporting requiring a secret ballot for unionization.

Anderson received low marks as well for supporting mandatory health coverage for autism patients, and in the transportation realm for supporting a decision to allow localities to make it optional to decide whether or not to adopt plans for urban development.

Manassas Delegate Jackson Miller (R-50) received the highest marks of any politician that for supporting the chamber’s initiatives.

“The policies set in Richmond have a direct effect on how business is done, and how we live, in Prince William.  It is important to bring our members together with state representatives, encouraging an open dialogue about how they can support the success of our region, and of our businesses,” said Prince William Chamber President & CEO Rob Clapper.

The event was held at Old Hickory Golf Club in Woodbridge.

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