PRINCE WILLIAM COUNTY
Candland wants to abolish schools revenue-sharing agreement
Candland wants to abolish schools revenue-share agreement The Republican on the Prince William County Board of Supervisors wants to abolish the revenue sharing agreement — a funding mechanism in place since 1986 between the taxing authority Prince William County Board of Supervisors and the county’s School Board. Under the agreement, the schools automatically receive just over 57% of the total county government budget. Candland did not say what would replace the revenue-share agreement. The revenue sharing agreement was put in place, in part, to stop politicians on both Boards from arguing over how much funding the school should receive annually. Candland’s call to abolish it comes after he called to increase it from the current 57.23% of the total county government budget going to fund local schools.
Superintendent, Dr. Steven Walts of Prince William County Public Schools, indicated he is pleased overall that 90 percent of PWC schools are receiving accreditation this year, which is above the state average. Walts is also pleased with the overall progress schools have made. He noted that even in the cases where a school did not receive full accreditation from the Commonwealth, there were significant improvements in students’ SOL scores due to hard work from students and staff members who prepared students for the challenging standardized assessments.
Prince William Board of Supervisors appoint new county executive
Acting Prince William County executive Christopher Martino got a promotion Tuesday to be the county executive. Martino has been doing the job since Jan. 16, when former county executive Melissa Peacor retired. The Prince William Board of County Supervisors approved his appointment at their meeting Tuesday, Sept. 20. The county executive manages the day-to-day administration of the county government and is responsible for executing policies approved by the board of county supervisors.
Supervisor Jeanine Lawson (R-Brentsville) said she opposes clustering in the Rural Crescent, but is not opposed to the county purchasing development rights to protect rural land via an easement, at her Thursday night town hall meeting. Clustering is an option to preserve open land in the Rural Crescent through clustering homes together and leaving the majority of the land open to agriculture. An easement is a legal way to preserve land for perpetuity. The issue is timely, since the Prince William Board of County Supervisors will vote on whether or not to “initiate” or further look into clustering, purchase of development rights and transfer of development rights programs at their Sept. 20 meeting.
Nowhere to go: Manassas trailer park residents face eviction
About 60 families are being evicted from a Manassas mobile home park that was bought by the city government on condition that the land be emptied of people and trailers. There are 300 people living in the 58 structures at the East End Mobile Home Park, just over 30 miles west of Washington. Most are low-income, many are Latino immigrants, and a significant number have lived there for years. The property manager notified residents Monday that they have until Feb. 28 to vacate.
DC suburbs becoming one of the country’s fastest-growing employment hubs
The D.C. metropolitan area added a blistering 94,800 jobs in the past year, according to government data released Friday. The region’s 2.98 percent employment growth rate handily outstripped the nation as a whole, and unemployment rates for July held steady at 5.9 percent in the District, 4.3 percent in Maryland and 3.7 percent in Virginia. Nationally, employment grew at 1.8 percent for the one-year period ending in July. “That’s extraordinarily impressive; it’s very rare to have this pace of job growth,” said Anirban Basu, chief executive of the Baltimore-based economic consultancy Sage Policy Group. “It’s amazing particularly in light of the fact that unemployment was already low.”
Home sales in the DEC area haven’t been this high since 2006
Presidential elections typically cause a lull in the Washington area housing market in the late summer and early fall as buyers wait for clarity around what will happen the next four years before making such a large purchase. That hasn’t been the case this year as home buying continues at a brisk pace despite the coming change in administrations. Home sales in the region climbed to their highest level for August since 2006, the height of the housing boom. The 5,089 homes sold last month were 12.7 percent higher compared with August 2015, according to data provided by ShowingTime RBI based on listing activity from MRIS, the area’s multiple listing service.
August home sales rebound after lackluster July
Home sales in Virginia rebounded in August after a lackluster July and rose higher from the same month a year ago, according to the August Home Sales Report released Thursday afternoon by the Virginia Association of Realtors. Sales in central Virginia, Northern Virginia and Hampton Roads accounted for the largest percentage of overall sales last month in the commonwealth, underscoring a sustained strengthening in the market, according to the report. A total of 11,482 houses were sold in August in Virginia, up 12.5 percent from the same period a year ago. The median sales price, with half the houses selling for more and half for less, was $272,500, up 1.7 percent from the same month a year ago.
Forcier-Rowe named 2017 president of Virginia Association of Realtors
Claire Forcier-Rowe, manager of Long & Foster Real Estate’s Hanover and Bay/River offices, has been elected president of the Virginia Association of Realtors. She succeeds Bill White, president of Joyner Fine Properties, as the elected leader of the association — one of the largest trade groups in the state with more than 32,000 members. Forcier-Rowe will assume her new post Nov. 8.
U.S. household income grew 5.2 percent in 2015, breaking pattern of stagnation
Americans last year reaped the largest economic gains in nearly a generation as poverty fell, health insurance coverage spread and incomes rose sharply for households on every rung of the economic ladder, ending years of stagnation. The median household’s income in 2015 was $56,500, up 5.2 percent from the previous year — the largest single-year increase since record-keeping began in 1967, the Census Bureau said on Tuesday. The share of Americans living in poverty also posted the sharpest decline in decades. The gains were an important milestone for the economic expansion that began in 2009. For the first time in recent years, the benefits of renewed prosperity are spreading broadly.
Manassas voters to choose city council, school board members in November election
In Manassas, the November election will offer more than just a choice between Hillary Clinton and Donald J. Trump. For the first time in recent memory, the city will hold its local elections on the same day voters head to the polls to choose a new president. The new timing is the result of the November 2012 election, during which 61 percent of the Manassas electorate voted to move city council and school board elections from May to November. The switch has already resulted in big changes from previous local elections, which were typically quiet, low-turnout affairs.
Stewart, Gillespie trade barbs over Trump support and 2017 gubernatorial race
Republican gubernatorial candidate Corey Stewart called Tuesday for his GOP rivals to put their 2017 ambitions on hold and unite behind Donald Trump, an appeal that competitor Ed Gillespie’s campaign dismissed as insincere because of Stewart’s own attacks against Gillespie. In a news release, Stewart, Trump’s Virginia campaign chairman, called on Gillespie and other Republican gubernatorial hopefuls — Rep. Robert J. Wittman, R-1st, and state Sen. Frank W. Wagner of Virginia Beach — to put their “full focus” on electing Trump. “With 56 days left, I am urging all Virginia’s gubernatorial candidates to join me in a common mission of electing Donald J. Trump — while putting our own campaigns on the back-burner,” Stewart said in a written statement. “This is an invitation to support Trump’s candidacy by speaking at candidate rallies, attending local Trump events, and showing support publicly.”
Ed Gillespie has early edge in GOP contest for governor, but candidates are largely unknown
Republican Ed Gillespie has an early edge in the 2017 contest for governor, but many voters know too little about the candidates to offer an opinion, according to a new University of Mary Washington survey. In the four-way battle for the GOP nomination, 40 percent do not have a preference, according to a University of Mary Washington survey. Among those with a preference, 19 percent favored Gillespie, a former Republican National Committee chairman who nearly knocked off Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va. in 2014.
Debate scheduled for 1st Congressional District candidates
A 1st Congressional District candidates’ debate will be held at 7 p.m. Oct. 12 at the Dar Al Noor Islamic Community Center, 5404 Hoadly Road, Manassas. The Prince William Area League of Women Voters will put on the event, featuring moderator Mark Segraves. The candidates include Republican candidate Rob Wittman, Democratic candidate Matt Rowe and Independent candidate Glenda Gail Parker.
Government Affairs Coordinator