Eminent Domain WIN!

In a stunning loss for Old Dominion University, the state Supreme Court ruled Thursday that the Norfolk Redevelopment and Housing Authority did not have the right to condemn a nearby apartment building for ODU’s expansion.

The decision, which reversed a Circuit Court ruling, could mean the end of a bitter and long-running fight between ODU and three holdout business owners who have fought for years to stay on their land, even as property owners all around them ceded.

PKO Ventures, the owner of the apartments, will get back its 10-unit building, which was emptied of its tenants last year.

The ruling also likely will mean that two other businesses, Central Radio and Norva Plastics, will get to stay on their land, said their lawyer, Joe Waldo.

“It’s over,” he said. “I think this makes it very clear that the authority never existed for these condemnations.”

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The Tea Party was instrumental in passing the reform to Eminent Domain last year. This is the fruit of our labors.

Debbie Pavon outside of Central Radio Co.

Debbie Pavon outside of Central Radio Co.

Tax, Water Rate Increases Pass Council

Wednesday night, the council passed the budget as written with the 6 cent property tax increase & the water rate increases. The vote was 5-3. Councilman Fawcett voted against the water increases and Councilmen Ward & Duman voted against it because they wanted to take over a million dollars from a savings account the city has set aside for emergencies and give it to the school system for an HVAC system.

But, on the plus side, we did win a few small concessions. I don’t want anyone in our group to feel like we failed. If we had not spoken out, the tax increase would likely have been much higher. Remember, at the budget hearing in March, they were talking about anywhere from 11-23 cent increases to pay for so much more. It is because we spoke out that the 2 projects were deferred (the Library land acquisition, & the Bennett’s Creek Rec Center – located 700 yards from Creekside Rec).

We did well for our first time really challenging the budget process. Folks in the city government now know, without a doubt, that we are not only out here, but active & educated about the process. Several councilmen now know our leadership by sight, and on more than one occasion have actively sought out our leadership for discussions. It may not seem like we accomplished much, but we did.

http://www.suffolknewsherald.com/2013/05/01/513m-budget-passed/

http://hamptonroads.com/2013/05/suffolk-property-tax-rate-climb-6-cents

Celebrate the Small Stuff

victory

Just about everyone in Suffolk agrees on one thing: City Council does NOT listen to the people. However, City Council is listening to us! True, the budget still includes a property tax increase, and a water/sewer fee increase, however, two projects we spoke out against were deferred! There is even better evidence beyond that, proving Council & the City Manager are paying attention to US!

The biggest victory is, of course, the deferment of two projects. The “Central Library” plan, which was to replace Morgan Memorial, was slated to spend 1.5 million dollars acquiring land in the coming year, while the building itself was not slated to be built until 2019 at the earliest. That would have meant 5 years of that area of property being off the tax rolls, not to mention the businesses that would have been shut down during the acquisition. This was NOT a good idea in this economy. You complained, City Council listened. The project will likely come up again in the future, but for this coming year, it’s off the books.

The other project that was deferred was the Bennett’s Creek Rec Center. This particular rec center was to have been built a short 700 yards from the existing Creekside Rec Center. It would have cost the city 1.25 million dollars to renovate the building & surrounding land in the coming year and would have added over $400,000 a year in maintenance, upkeep, & salaries.

The deferment of these two projects will reduce the rate of spending growth by 2.7 million dollars! Everyone who called their councilman, or showed up to the March 18th budget meeting, you did that!

Another piece of evidence that the Suffolk HRTP has gotten the attention of City Council, was the numerous times that multiple councilmen & government representatives kept insisting that the budget that has been released is a line-item budget. Even better, the documents were released at the time the Work Session started, when it would normally take 24 hours or more to for the city to get them online.

The last bit of evidence that proves our voices are being heard; the city manager’s letter directly addressed the question of reducing the fleet, an item brought up by several of our members at the March 18th Budget Meeting. She of course was against such a measure, but the point is, she addressed it! Ms. Selena Cuffee-Glenn responded to us!

While there is still much work to be done in Suffolk, it is important for us to celebrate these small victories and realize that we ARE making a difference in Suffolk.

Now, back to work.

Cantor triple-dog-dares Reid

So, Eric Cantor, Senator from VA, has pretty much called Harry Reid a scared scaredy cat, and triple dog dared him to bring the Health Care Repeal to the floor of the Senate for a vote.

“If Harry Reid is so confident that the repeal vote should die in the Senate then he should bring it up for a vote if he’s so confident he’s got the votes,” Cantor said.

Of course, Reid is full of more chicken shit then the floor at a Purdue farm, so I’m betting he won’t allow it.  As HotAir’s Ed Morrissey points out:

Reid knows, however, that it’s his Democrats who have alienated the electorate through the passage of ObamaCare — and so does Cantor. In fact, so do a number of Reid’s colleagues in the Senate, 23 of whom have to face voters next year. Some, such as Ben Nelson of Nebraska and Jon Tester of Montana, had hoped to spend the 112th Session casting enough conservative votes to get their constituents to forget the ObamaCare vote in 2010. The last thing many of them need is to be forced to support it again in this session, even with a cloture vote.

via Cantor to Reid: If you’re so confident ObamaCare repeal will fail in Senate … « Hot Air.

Elizabeth Edwards – Beyond the Grave pwnage

In the will signed on Dec. 1, six days before she died, Elizabeth Edwards left her estate to her three children, naming eldest daughter Cate, a lawyer, executor of the will.

“All of my furniture, furnishings, household goods, jewelry, china, silverware and personal effects and any automobiles owned by me at the time of my death, I give and bequeath to my children,” the will stated.

There was no mention of her husband in the five-page document.

via FoxNews.com – Elizabeth Edwards Cut John Out of Her Will.

Smells like DeDe

Breaking from the T&A, oh, I mean, TSA coverage, for some local political news…. It seems that George Allen of the “macaca” fame is trying to pull a fast one on the Republicans in Virginia.

Bearing Drift broke the story here. What it boils down to, is that all of the sudden, out of nowhere, Georgie-boy and his pals want to change how the process is done here in VA.

In Virginia the parties can select their nominees through the primary election process or through a convention. When choosing a state-wide nominee, the establishment generally prefers a primary as it favors establishment candidates with more name recognition and more money while conservatives prefer the convention.

via George Allen and The Virginia Republicans, I Don’t Believe They Get It! « Disrupt the Narrative.

See, George wants the nomination process for Senate in 2012 to be done by primary.  Normally this would be discussed and the vote would be held sometime next year around March.  But he wants the RPV (Republican Party of Virginia) to vote on it, and he wants that vote right now! /footstomp

Thing is, I actually prefer a primary.  I disagree with those who think that a primary gives more advantage to the party-backed favorite.  To those people I say, get off your duff and do something for the guy you want to win! Donate, either cash or time. Walk the streets, talk to the people, phone bank, etc.  Don’t whine and cry about how unfair the system is, or how much money it takes.  Go do something about it.

As Virginia Virtucon points out:

For those who believe that deciding on a separate primary early works best to George Allen’s advantage, I would caution that all it does is give potential opponents like Corey Stewart and Bob Marshall more time to raise their profiles statewide and fundraise.

I think Virginians, especially those of us in the Tea Party Movement need to realize that change has come, and not all change is bad. This could wind up being a good thing in the long run.

However. I do not like the feel of this hurry-up, backroom, vote-now-before-anyone-realizes-we’re-doing-this move.  This looks too much like an attempt to influence voters and crown George Allen, a proven loser, as nominee 2 years in advance.  Smells a little too much like Dede Scozzafava to me.

Memo to the RPV – the silent majority has been awakened, and ya’ll aren’t safe just because you have an “R” by your name.

Obama loses his cool over some hecklers.

via Gateway Pundit.

Seems a bunch of hecklers were hassling BigO about Global Aids funding.  Read this story in WashPo for more information on why the hecklers are mad.  I love this story because all those invovled in the Global Aids Fund are praising Bush and dissing BigO.  Awesome.

The trouble, activists say, is that the big gains in generosity and economizing have mostly stopped. International AIDS assistance was the same in 2008 and 2009, and is not expected to go up much, if any, this year. The White House request for global AIDS spending for the next fiscal year is only 2 percent higher than what is being spent this year.

Although there’s argument about the exact numbers, there’s little doubt the Obama administration is on track to spend less than planned by either the GHI or the Lantos-Hyde Act of 2008, which renewed PEPFAR (Bush’s revolutionary President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief) and authorized spending $48 billion from 2009 through 2013. Many other donor countries are taking a similar go-slower approach.

“Bush made a commitment, and then circumstances changed. Despite the change, he kept his word,” said Zeitz of the Global AIDS Alliance.

Steve King has a set of big brass ones.

Steve King, Republican from Iowa said on the floor of the House last Thursday night:

“it seems the President has an inclination to engage in these kinds of things. When he had an Irish cop and a black professor, who did he side with? He jumped to a conclusion without having heard the facts, and he ended up having to have a beer summit.”

When it comes to immigration laws, King said, “We need a mission at the top. The President of the United States has got to articulate a mission. Instead, he is playing race bait games to undermine the law enforcement in the State of Arizona and across the country, and undermining the efforts of our Border Patrol, ICE, and customs border protection.”

Go read the whole thing.  Jake Tapper even has embedded video of Iowa Rep. Steve King just nailing the Prez on this Arizona law = racial discrimination thing.

Remember those “racist protesters”? It was a lie.

Several people filmed the entire episode and could not find any evidence of racist hate.Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. D-IL even filmed the entire episode.He found nothing.

Yesterday, new video was released that confirms the spitting incident was bogus, too.

Check out the article at Gateway Pundit for photos, videos, and links galore.