Monthly Archive for May, 2003

Blair Hawkins to Fight Windmill

Jack writes: Local Republican Blair Hawkins says that he intends to run against Mitch Van Yahres for Delegate, despite that fact that he missed the deadline to officially file his candidacy. Stating that “The campaign is far from over,” Hawkins explains that he missed the deadline because he was out of town working as a lighting technician for weddings. In a separate statement, he has offered that he was unaware of the deadline because he has not checked his email in several weeks. Hawkins intends to deliver a nomination speech at the Republican mass meeting on June 2 at McIntire Park. 06/03 Update: Hawkins bowed out at last night’s Republican mass meeting.

Press Release:

May 29, 2003

The Hawkins campaign for House of Delegates 57th District continues.

“I will be at the Republican mass meeting Monday June 2, 6 pm, at McIntire Park. I will deliver my nomination speech and/or hand out copies of the speech to those interested. The speech will explain the reasons I have to run.

A political ad will appear in the Public Notices section of the Daily Progress classifieds for one week beginning Friday May 30. The campaign is far from over.

I failed to file by the deadline for the Republican Convention because I have been working out of town and very long hours the last few weeks as lighting techinician for weddings and big tent parties. I simply missed the newspaper with the announcement that came just one week before the convention.

I look forward to a stimulating campaign over the summer. The incumbent Mitch Van Yahres will have opportunities to explain why he opposes the Fifth Amendment and supports Urban Renewal.”

Blair Hawkins

City Pursues More Cultural Exchanges

Indie writes: City Manager Gary O’Connell is headed to Bulgaria, WINA reports, where among other things, he “hopes to set up an exchange where officials from the city of Plevin, Bulgaria will visit Charlottesville.” The city also has a sister relationship with Besancon, France and Poggio a Caiano, Italy. Is there tangible value in these relationships or is it just a waste of time?

Van Yahres Running Unopposed

The deadline has come and gone for a Republican challenger to file their candidacy against Democratic incumbent Mitch Van Yahres, without anybody stepping forward. Tom McCrystal and Blair Hawkins were both seen as likely candidates, but McCrystal decided not to run and Hawkins never filed. Says Van Yahres, “I’m kind of sorry. On the whole, I’d rather have opposition. It sharpens your whole approach on the issues and the major reason is the public deserves to have a debate on the issues.” On the other side of party lines, Republican Delegate Rob Bell, who represents portions of Albemarle, remains unchallenged, though a Democrat could still announce their candidacy. Bob Gibson has the story in today’s Progress.

WVIR Loses $10M Suit

A jury has awarded $10MM to a Greene County man, ruling that WVIR wrongly reported that cocaine had been found on his property. In early 2001, Jesse Sheckler’s home was raided, and he was charged with helping to finance a drug dealer. He was eventually acquitted, but WVIR incorreclty reported repeatedly in the interim that cocaine had been found. Sheckler sued, claiming defamation. WVIR intends to appeal. The AP has the story. 05/27 Update: Liesel Nowak has a way better story in the Progress.

Garrett Square Redone, Renamed

The Garrett Square housing complex in downtown Charlottesville has never been known as a particularly great place to live, despite many residents’ fierce defense of what they feel are its many fine attributes. That appears to be changing. New owners (Piedmont Housing Alliance and the National Housing Trust-Enterprise Preservation Corp.) have bought the complex from its former Atlanta-based owner, and they’re overhauling each unit, having already installed a computer lab with high-speed Internet access. The residents have even selected a name for themselves: Friendship Court. Courteney Stuart has the story in this week’s Hook.