Monthly Archive for August, 2007

Wyant Accepts $10,000 from Appointee

It was one year ago that real estate attorney Duane Zobrist was appointed to the planning commission by White Hall Supervisor David Wyant. Now Zobrist has given Wyant a jaw-dropping $10,000 campaign contribution, doubling the size of Wyant’s campaign coffers. The Daily Progress is reporting that story today (though Chris Graham at the Augusta Free Press broke the story several weeks ago), raising the question of whether there’s a relationship between the nomination and the contribution. Wyant, a Republican, is facing stiff competition in the form of Democrat Ann Huckle Mallek, and $10,000 is the sort of money that will make or break a candidate for BoS.

The central issue in the race is development — Wyant favors increased development in Crozet, while Mallek wants to limit growth. Though Zobrist’s line of work has presumably spurred his generosity, the appearance of impropriety is hard to ignore.

City Plans $200k of Tourism Signs

Kelly writes to point out that Seth Rosen had an article in the Progress last week on the topic of the city’s $200k new signage program, designed to help tourists find their way downtown. The Board of Architectural Review is in the process of approving the array of signs, which will appear at the city’s major entrance corridors, ringing the Downtown Mall, and along the Mall itself. The signs on the Downtown Mall is embarrassingly out of date — if there wasn’t a plan to upgrade them, it would be better to tear them down than to leave them up. The city forecasts that the signs will be up come spring.

City Recycling Paper at Curbside

Sean McCord writes:

According to an announcement posted today in the City website, residents can now curbside recycle paper products such as catalogues, magazines, junk mail, etc. This is big! For many years, I trotted glass, metal, and newspaper out to the curb, but visited the Recycling Center regularly with my bins of plastic, cardboard, and paper. Then, several months ago, curbside recycling began accepting the plastic and cardboard, so my trips to the center with just boxes of recyclable paper were less frequent. Now, with the city also accepting curbside paper, I can safely dispose of everything on a weekly schedule and save the gasoline I would use to travel to the Recycling Center. It’s brilliant! The City does ask that we place our loose paper recyclables in paper bags and to not put them out during inclement weather, which seems fair.

You can request a recycling bin from the city if you don’t already have one. Since I live out in the county in a small house, the trunk of my Volvo has become the household recycling bin. I visit the recycling center when it gets full. Heck of a system.

“Secret Agent Ken Boyd”

A friend just turned me on to the brilliant, satirical, and local Beta Carotene Show. Their brand-new installment of the old-time-style radio show is an episode entitled “Secret Agent Ken Boyd.” The show is credited to Steve Ashby, Alex Davis, Bill Davis, and Robert LaRue, who play characters including Wendell Wood, all of the BoS, and God.

I’m so happy to have a chance to use the “Satire” category. This town needs satire, and it needs it badly.


Speaking of meta-media coverage, Lindsay Barnes looks at the rise of WCNR “The Corner” in local radio in this week’s Hook, focusing on the station’s program director, Brad Savage, and his counterpart at WNRN, Mike Friend. The formats of the two stations are very similar, but WCNR is owned by media conglomerate Saga Communications while WNRN is is a locally-founded non-profit. Barnes explores the degree to which that difference in business approaches ultimately matters, and how it affects the two stations. There’s some good discussion about the story on The Hook‘s website, and over at CE Conversations Ralph offers some thoughtful analysis of WNRN’s ban on the phrase “The Corner”



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