Thu07302015

Last updateWed, 27 Dec 2017 12am

Montross man maintaining Purple Martin Retreat

Montross man maintaining Purple Martin Retreat

On Father’s Day, George Henry Oliff of Montross spent time with his family. He had dinner with...

Greater Montross revitalization group seeking input from area residents

The Greater Montross Partnership for Revitalization wants ideas for spiffing up and encouraging grea...

First Friday evening events return for 2015

First Friday evening events return for 2015

First Fridays and First Saturdays are back in Montross. The joyful weekend activities will continue ...

Dam breach threatens historic Chandler’s Millpond in Montross

Dam breach threatens historic Chandler’s Millpond in Montross

Picturesque Chandler’s Millpond, a 300-year-old lake on Route 3 west of Montross, has been clo...

No new county taxes for Beach residents in Westmoreland budget

Supervisor Larry Roberson recently presented highlights of the Westmoreland County budget for the re...

Young boy saves grandmother

Young boy saves grandmother

At first glance Marquis Smith is a typical nine-year-old boy in fourth grade, even to his grandmothe...

  nichollsauction 201507

eyecareofva201403 web

 

  Muhammad 900x120 Banner2015

Office-for-rent Jrnl Bldg 20130925

IDA’s June 29 O’Gara contract meeting catches fire in Westmoreland County

It was ignition time when members of the public and Westmoreland County’s Industrial Development Authority (IDA) gathered this Monday evening in their English Building meeting room to approve a new purchase agreement with The O’Gara Group. The room was filled to near capacity when IDA Chairman Jimmy Latane’s hushed voice advised Authority members that the special meeting had begun.

“We can’t hear you!” said a chorus of voices from the audience. “Won’t you please speak louder!”
An effort was made to move local government’s recording microphone a little closer to the Chairman as county citizens strained their ears in an effort to hand on to every word.  The seldomly seen IDA representative from the Town of Colonial Beach, Paul Tsompanas, was in attendance, along with veteran members Dick Allison and Rebecca Gillions and Authority newcomers Stanley Dixon and Steven P. Allen. Veteran member Bryan Oliff missed the meeting in order to attend a child’s ball game.
Hearing remained a challenge, but Latane welcomed the two new members. “I hope your time on the IDA will be rewarding to you,” he stated.
Veteran Dick Allison immediately delivered a motion to move the meeting’s closed door session closer to the top of the night’s agenda but a voice from the audience rose in protest of the Authority’s penchant for secrecy.
“I’m tired of you guys going behind closed doors,” the resident commented.
Latane’s gavel banged louder than his words when he responded, “Sir, you are out of order.”
“Then let the Sheriff take me away,” the voice responded. “We are the people. Why don’t you leave this meeting open?”

The sea of people echoed the sentiment in a controlled roar of approval as the Chair again attempted to resume control.
“You’re out of order,” repeated Chairman Latane.
“You should not go behind closed doors,” the voice replied as the audience delivered its sustained round of applause.
“I am tired of being closed out,” the voice continued. “I am sorry if I have upset you, but everybody here is upset and we should all be together on this. Please tell us why O’Gara Group will be good for the people of Westmoreland.
“Nobody came to us to ask us what we wanted. If you guys think O’Gara will be such a good thing for all of us, sell it to us. Let us help you explain to others why O’Gara is going to be a good thing for our people!”
Another question from the audience addressed the manner in which the public received notice of the June 29 special meeting.
“Why was the notice not posted until 3:53 on Thursday afternoon? Is this how democracy is supposed to work?”
By then all members of the IDA had voted on Allison’s motion to expedite the meeting’s closed-door session. Latane was heard casting a “nay” vote and then announcing that Allison’s motion had carried and the closed session would very soon begin.
“This is nonsense!” exclaimed a voice from the audience.
Another resident addressed the IDA with an impromptu question. “Are you working for [County Administrator] Norm Risavi or are you an independent deliberating body?”
“Nobody is going to leave this room!” said a citizen who attempted to block the door through which the IDA members were expected to pass in order to convene the closed-door portion of the meeting.
Dixon made a motion to take the Authority into the closed portion of its meeting.
“And I say we should not allow them to go behind closed doors!” a resident exclaimed.
“ . . . .to consult with counsel regarding pending litigation . . . and if we need an officer to remove these trouble makers . . . .,” Dixon continued.
“You have representatives here from O’Gara. Bring them on and let them explain why they will be such a good thing for the people in Westmoreland!” another voice interjected above the din.
“And have the O’Gara people tell you how they’re related to DynCorp!” another voice proposed.
By then the last member of the county’s official delegation had disappeared behind a door that was not blocked. Twenty minutes later the Westmoreland officials and IDA defense attorney, John Gibney of the Thompson-McMullan’s law office in Richmond, returned to reconvene in open session.
After new and old IDA members expressed confidence that they knew what they were doing, the new O’Gara purchase contract was unanimously approved. A chorus of protests ensued, with residents complaining that the input they offered had not been entertained.
“This is not a public meeting,” Latane whispered.
“Citizens are here, and there are some in Westmoreland who are scared to sign petitions,” a voice protested.
“Is this a public hearing” queried Tsompanas. “I don’t want to sit here. These people are out of order. Mr. Chair, I call for order!” he screamed in an effort to be heard above the din.
“. . . and you’ll certainly be sued again,” predicted one voice from the crowded audience.
“. . . gestapo  ways. . .” cried someone.
“Is this 1939 all over again?” a woman questioned.
“No,” a male voice answered. “This is 1984!”
“What about the promise Mr. Noe gave us?” a resident inquired. “Didn’t he promise O’Gara wouldn’t come here if they were not wanted?”
“ . . . one thousand petition signatures mean nothing at all?” another speaker queried.
“. . . boycott their businesses,” suggested someone.
“. . . immediate injunction in the Richmond federal court!” yet another voice exclaimed.

Betsy Ficklin

 

NARFE WEB2 150x300

Contact Lori Deem

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

540-709-7495 • 540-775-2024


 

Quikey

Bulletline


 

Balloon House


 link4

Wedding invitations and other announcements

 

201504getaway

 

201505pr

201505homesection

201506family

2015montross

20150624grad

Contact Us

The Journal Press, Inc. P. O. Box 409, 10250 Kings Hwy. King George, VA 22485

EDITORIAL
George Whitehurst
540-775-2024 Main

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

REPORTING
Leonard Banks
540-469-4196

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Phyllis Cook
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Linda Farneth
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Richard Leggitt
540-993-7460
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

GRAPHICS
Leonard Banks
540-469-4196
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

ADVERTISING
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

ADVERTISING SALES
Hilleary Thoren
540-709-7061
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Dennis Verdak
540-709-7076
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

COMMERCIAL PRINTING & SALES
Lori Deem, Print Shop
540-709-7495
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

COMMUNITY &
CHURCH EVENTS

Lori Deem
540-709-7495
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

OFFICE
Jessica Herrink
540-775-2024 (main)

540-469-4031
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Robert Berczuk
540-775-2024
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

PRODUCTION/IS

Drue Murray

540-709-7288
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

SUBSCRIPTIONS
Bonnie Gouvisis

540-775-2024
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

PUBLIC NOTICES
& LEGALS

Hilleary Thoren
540-709-7061
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.