Police warn against vacuum sales team

The Front Royal Police Department has been made aware of several occurrences of door-to-door solicitation within the Town limits. According to Town Code 138-1S, “the going upon the property of private residences in the town by solicitors……without having first obtained a permit or an exemption under the provisions of Virginia Code section 57-48 et seq. shall be unlawful.” Additionally, Town Code 138-4 states “it shall be unlawful for any person to act as a solicitor within the Town without first securing a solicitor’s permit from the Chief of Police or his designated subordinate. “The solicitor’s permit shall be in addition to a business license for all commercial solicitation.”

“The Front Royal Police Department needs to know when these individuals are going door-to-door and soliciting our residents without proper verification and permits,” states Chief Richard H. Furr. “The permitting process helps to prevent unscrupulous subjects from scamming our citizens and promotes fair competition for our local businesses.”

There are at least three subjects involved in these recent solicitations. One is a young Caucasian female in her early twenties with light brown hair and facial piercings. The other two subjects are both Caucasian young males in their early twenties. The subjects are reportedly going door to door, offering to demonstrate a vacuum cleaner and giving away air fresheners as a free gift for the demonstration.

Anyone with information regarding these incidents is asked to contact Detective Jason Winner with the Criminal Investigations Division at (540) 636-2208.

From a release

Published in: on April 30, 2010 at 11:01 am  Comments (1)  

Drummond named to Planning & Zoning post

From a release:

The Town of Front Royal is pleased to announce that Mr. Bruce Drummond has been named Director of Planning and Zoning for the Town of Front Royal. Mr. Drummond has served as Interim Director of Planning and Zoning for the town since November 2009, exhibiting a superior level of customer and citizen service in addition to the overall management of the department. Mr. Drummond began his employment with the town as a Planner in 2006. As a graduate of Virginia Polytechnic and State University with a Master of Arts in Urban Affairs and twenty-three years experience in the Planning and Zoning field our citizens can rely on the Town of Front Royal’s Planning and Zoning Department to continue to serve their needs.

Mr. David Gushee, Chairman of the Planning Commission remarked, “I know I speak for everyone on the Commission when I say we are delighted that Bruce has been appointed as Planning Director. He has proven himself to be knowledgeable, even-handed, and responsive to a wide variety of points of view and productive. We are delighted to learn that we will be able to continue to work with him as we have learned over the last six months or so just how good he is”.

Published in: on April 29, 2010 at 2:58 pm  Leave a Comment  

Misdemeanor charge against Tareq Salahi dismissed for ‘good behavior’

Alleged White House gate crashing did not violate ‘good behavior’ condition.

By Roger Bianchini
Warren County Report

A misdemeanor Petit Larceny charge against alleged White House gatecrasher Tareq Salahi related to an August 2009 dispute with a auto repo man at their Linden home was dismissed on April 28 in Warren County General District Court.

Neither Tareq Salahi nor his wife Michaele appeared for the routine case review. Mr. Salahi was represented by Front Royal defense attorney Jerry Talton. On October 28th, the case was continued with the commonwealth and Salahi’s attorney agreeing that the case would be dismissed with no finding of guilt and no costs assessed “dependent on the good behavior” of Mr. Salahi through April 28, 2010. Warren County Commonwealth Attorney Brian Madden told us in December that good behavior meant no criminal charges filed for acts committed during the six months the case is being continued.

When Judge W. Dale Houff asked Assistant Commonwealth Attorney Elizabeth Bradley if the commonwealth would stipulate that Salahi had met the terms of the agreement, she replied, “Yes, your honor.” To which Houff quipped that at least Salahi had committed “nothing of this nature” during the court ordered six months of good behavior.

The obvious reference to Salahi and his wife’s now infamous Nov. 24, 2009 alleged gate crashing of a White House State Dinner for Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh received no reaction from the courtroom packed not with D.C. media as had been the case during an unrelated December court appearance by the Salahis here, but by other people pondering their own misdemeanor charges.

Neither was there any sign of a camera crew from the Bravo Network TV show Real Housewives of D.C., which as Warren County Report first reported tapped Mrs. Salahi and her husband for roles in the upcoming season.

“Our position throughout has been that Tareq was not guilty,” Talton told us. The charge stemmed from the accusation of a repo driver that Salahi had taken his truck keys and tossed them away to prevent a vehicle repossession.

Talton pointed out that Repo driver Edward R. Beal, then of L & K Recovery in Centerville, had driven off the Salahi property the evening of the incident, albeit without the Salahi’s Audi after the Warren County Sheriff’s Office intervened after a call about the disturbance over the attempted repo. Talton also noted that Beal had not filed a complaint about the Aug. 14 incident until October 9, nearly two months later.

“The charge was nonsense,” Talton concluded.

Beal was sent to repossess the car at the Salahis Overlook Drive home in the Mosby Estates subdivision last August because Salahi was over $5,500 behind on payments at the time on an outstanding balance of $57,646.22. The monthly payment on the car is $1,771.39.

It was the same car the Salahis traveled to Front Royal in last December amidst a D.C. media frenzy for a court appearance on a civil dispute over an unpaid lawn service bill. On Dec. 4, Salahi turned over a supposed Phillipe Patek designer watch valued in the thousands of dollars to satisfy that debt. But when it was eventually determined through the court clerk’s office and local jeweler Jean’s Jewelers to be an imitation worth perhaps $100 a further uproar over the controversial couple ensued. The watch had been turned over to satisfy a year-old $925 debt to A1A Home Improvement and Lawn Care Service that had grown to $2,063 with court costs, legal fees and interest.

When the couple returned to their car parked in the Peyton Street parking lot following that December court appearance, they found the vehicle ticketed for an expired inspection sticker. A video of the posting of that ticket made FRPD traffic enforcement Officer Donald Orye a You Tube sensation that week.

Tareq Salahi is son of Dirgham and Corrine Salahi, founders of the now bankrupt Oasis Vineyards in Hume. He has been engaged in a long dispute with his mother over vineyard ownership and power of attorney for his now disabled father.

Published in: on April 28, 2010 at 1:39 pm  Comments (10)  

Video: Watch the candidates for Mayor

Part 1: What is the role of a mayor in a system that only allows him to vote to break a tie? Do you support the requirement of a super majority to pass tax rates? Is there anything a mayor can do to ease ideological impasses on council?

Part 2: Do you favor raising ‘luxury taxes’ on things like cigarettes, meals and lodging over real estate and personal property rate hikes over cutting services to close the town budget gap? What are your priorities over the next two years if you are elected mayor? What is your attitude on a solar farm & plant coming to Front Royal and what should the town’s role be?

Part 3: How do you view the performance of the Town Manager? How is the relationship between the town and county and how can it be improved or maintained? Should the town move to annex the north corridor? (Correction: In website video interviews with the town candidates we mistakenly referenced Mayor Eugene Tewalt’s anticipated tiebreaking vote in favor of Town Manager Michael Graham, which the mayor had stated he would have made last November. That potential tiebreaker vote was averted following a scathing public appraisal of any council effort to remove the town manager on Nov. 23rd. While a trio of councilmen had been highly critical of Graham’s actions surrounding solar negotiation and information flow beginning at a Nov. 2nd work session, Tom Conkey’s motion to remove the item from the Nov. 23rd meeting agenda following a strong public showing of support of the town manager passed by a unanimous roll call vote.)

Part 4: Tim Darr: Are you impacted by the Hatch Act? How has your job effected your role in local government? Eugene Tewalt: What accomplishments do you look to as you seek re-election? Both: How is your health?

Published in: on April 28, 2010 at 9:57 am  Leave a Comment  

EXCLUSIVE VIDEO: Tederick attacks, Hrbek responds

By Dan McDermott
Warren County Report

Warren County Republican activist Matt Tederick has sent Front Royal voters a letter harshly critical of Vice Mayor Bret Hrbek who is seeking re-election to town council May 4.

Tederick did not immediately return a call requesting comment but his letter contains several criticisms. One centers on Hrbek’s proposal ten years ago to institute a charge to be in the annual Front Royal Christmas Parade to raise funds for the event put on by the Downtown Business Association. Tederick also calls Hrbek “drunk with power” and criticizes Hrbek for selling bonds for AMP Ohio, a power company which jointly owns a coal plant with the town.

Hrbek responded to the letter on camera in the video above and in a post on his website.

In the letter, Tederick urges recipients to vote for any of the candidates except Hrbek and says he wrote the letter without the knowledge or authorization of anyone running for office.

Warren County Report invited Mr. Tederick to come to our studio for an on-camera interview Friday afternoon but he was not immediately available. We hope to speak with him soon.

Link: Original letter from Matt Tederick

Link: Response from Bret Hrbek

Follow Dan on Twitter and Facebook.

editor@warrencountyreport.com

Published in: on April 23, 2010 at 11:57 pm  Leave a Comment  

The Sherando Times: April 21 – 27, 2010

Left-click to open. Right-click to download.

Published in: on April 21, 2010 at 9:57 pm  Leave a Comment  

Video: Hyperactive little brown bats in Bentonville, VA

These gross but cute little brown bats hang out each summer in an information kiosk at Shenandoah River State Park in Bentonville, VA. They are like little ADHD mice with wings. They twitch constantly. It’s a great thing to show kids who have never seen a bat in the daylight–much less from just a few inches away. More on the park: www.riverparkfriends.org

Follow Dan on Twitter and Facebook.

editor@warrencountyreport.com

Published in: on April 21, 2010 at 9:39 pm  Leave a Comment  

Video: Warren County Skate Park Opens

By Dan McDermott
Warren County Report

After a decade of planning and fundraising, Virginia’s newest skate park finally opened today at Ed Stump Playground.

We caught up with Doug Stanley who was excited to see it finally open.

Richard Crowder from R.A.C. Security said all the kids were behaving and there had only been one minor injury so far.

The skaters, most but not all young, didn’t have too much to say. They were too busy with their skateboards, BMX bikes and rollerblades.

People came from as far away as Pennsylvania to try the park out.

Admission is free. There are rules at www.warrencountyskatepark.com.

Most folks on Jackson Street were rather pleased.   🙂

Follow Dan on Twitter and Facebook.

editor@warrencountyreport.com

Published in: on April 17, 2010 at 5:16 pm  Leave a Comment  

Video: Watch the candidates for Town Council

Part 1: “How do you view municipal government’s role in the lives of its citizens and how do you view a councilman’s role in that government?”

Part 2: “A majority of citizens at two recent public hearings favored a plan to raise taxes to avoid cuts in services. A majority of voting members of town council also favored that plan, along with the mayor. Because the plan required a super majority 4th vote, a minority was able to prevent a tie with an abstention and block the required 4th vote. Do you think that’s the way the system was intended to work? If not, should town and state codes be changed or revisited regarding that super majority requirement on tax increases?”

Part 3: “Do you favor increasing taxes on meals, lodging, cigarettes or other ‘luxury items?”

Part 4: “Do you favor increasing taxes on meals, lodging, cigarettes or other ‘luxury items?’ Also, who do you identify as your constituent base and do you feel a special allegiance to that group?’

Part 5: “What do you think are the major issues now and what would your priorities be through a four-year term?”

Part 6: “What is your attitude toward the proposal to build a large solar power field and solar panel manufacturing facility and what should the town government’s role in that be?”

Part 7: “Front Royal Town Manager J. Michael Graham recently survived an ouster move. What is your perception of the performance of the town manager and  would you vote to keep or sack him if the issue were revisited? (Correction: In website video interviews with the town candidates we mistakenly referenced Mayor Eugene Tewalt’s anticipated tiebreaking vote in favor of Town Manager Michael Graham, which the mayor had stated he would have made last November. That potential tiebreaker vote was averted following a scathing public appraisal of any council effort to remove the town manager on Nov. 23rd. While a trio of councilmen had been highly critical of Graham’s actions surrounding solar negotiation and information flow beginning at a Nov. 2nd work session, Tom Conkey’s motion to remove the item from the Nov. 23rd meeting agenda following a strong public showing of support of the town manager passed by a unanimous roll call vote.)

Part 8: “The town of Front Royal is a part of Warren County. What’s your perception of  current relations between the two governments and how can those relations be improved or maintained in a positive light?”

Part 9: Our final moments with Robert Tennett, Jr. “If you approach an issue with a certain perspective and then you get information contradicting your initial opinion, how do you react approaching a vote? You are a rookie candidate. Why should people be confident that you bring the qualifications to the table to be an effective councilman? Were you surprised at getting the Tea Party endorsement?”

Part 10: Our final moments with Shae Parker. “If you approach an issue with a certain perspective and then you get information contradicting your initial opinion, how do you react approaching a vote? Is there any difference in how you would view your role as an elected councilman versus the appointed role you’ve served for almost two years in the wake of all the hoopla over appointed members’ rights? You missed a meeting recently due to a flare-up of pancreatitis. How should the electorate view your health? Should that be a concern for them?”

Part 11: Our final moments with Bret Hrbek. “Recently you refused to support a 1.5% real estate tax increase but said you would support a 1% hike. Since you had previously supported a 3% increase, why did you make that .5% distinction? Were you surprised the local tea party endorsed you? You came to council at a young age. What do you know now about the function of government and how has the previous four years improved you as a councilman? Are you committed to four years on council or would you consider a run for mayor in 2012?”

Published in: on April 16, 2010 at 12:37 pm  Comments (1)  

The late April edition of Warren County Report

Left-click to open. Right-click to download.

Published in: on April 16, 2010 at 12:25 pm  Leave a Comment  
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