FREE: The Late-December edition of Warren County Report

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Enjoy our completely free print edition by clicking on the cover image above. Here are some highlights:

Town liable for back fees after lawsuit filed

Front Royal owes ‘Big 3’ national chain litigants a total of $120,354

In a Dec. 16 written order, augmenting his verbal decision of Nov. 30, Circuit Court Judge Dennis L. Hupp issued, if we may borrow from the pugilistic vernacular, a “split decision” on the issue of reimbursements of already paid meals tax fees tied to plaintiff restaurants’ water and sewer bills from the Town of Front Royal.

Consequently the town will owe the portion of the meals tax fees paid after the three north corridor restaurants filed suit challenging the fees on Jan. 9, 2009. According to paperwork in the court record, that amount totals to $120,354.30, including $177.66 in interest accumulated since those first post lawsuit payments were made in late July and early August.

Four phased Fishnet Master Plan unveiled in detail

County endorses vision at cost estimate of $6.5 million over first 10 years

County government got an overview of the consultant prepared Master Plan for the 219-acre Fishnet property acquired several years ago to provide a multi-faceted future site for a variety of county uses. At the forefront of that plan are recreational functions from hiking to ballfields, as well as the potential location of facilities such as a major parks and recreation center, a 600-pupil elementary school, and even a fire department training complex.

The vision presented begins simply with a Phase One design to utilize the existing trails system and natural beauty of the area to develop scenic park hiking and camping sites, along with initial work on ball fields, and development of a VDOT approved entrance road to the property. That phase is forecast to be developed over the next three years.

Today the board of directors, tomorrow the world …

… or at least Warren County Social Services Director Ron King

The Warren County Board of Supervisors continued its move to more direct control of oversight of the county Department of Social Services with a unanimous Dec. 15 vote to reorganize the existing DSS Board of Directors and convert it into an advisory, rather than supervisory board, effective Jan. 1, 2010. With no action taken on motions to install new social services advisory board members by Magisterial District it remains unclear as to how the supervisors plan to phase in the new advisory board – though the smart money says sooner than later.

“We are appointing Mr. Stanley as the administrative board and the existing board will continue as the advisory board until replaced,” Happy Creek Supervisor Tony Carter summarized of the board’s action. It was also noted that an advisory board must meet every two months, so whoever it is, the social services advisory board must meet by the end of February.

Mills’ request to permit, expand garage operation granted

White: What’s the point of zoning and VDOT safety recommendations?

“Is that the kind of precedent you want to set?” Warren County’s Supervisors were asked as they pondered a request for a Conditional Use Permit (CUP) to continue and expand an auto repair business that has slipped through the cracks of legality since 1974.

The precedent in question was granting a CUP for a non-conforming use in an Agriculturally zoned area despite a recommendation for denial by the county planning commission and a recommendation of denial by the Virginia Department of Transportation, the latter over entrance and line of sight issues on a stretch of road one speaker observed is not only “dangerous,” but dangerously fatal in recent years.

Salahi takes DC United VP to court

Tareq attorney – ‘Show me the money’; DC United – ‘We showed it to Tareq’

There was little action – at least initially – and nary a Salahi sighting to be had in or outside the Warren County General District Courtroom the morning of Dec. 18. That was despite another civil claims case involving at least one member of the county couple now famous as “the White House gatecrashers.”

Unlike their Dec. 4 court appearance which last drew the DC media to downtown Front Royal – Fox 5, WUSA 9 and the Washington Post were on hand with us this chilly morning – this time only Tareq Salahi was an involved party, as plaintiff in a case seeking over $10,700 in garnishments against a former contract employee of Salahi’s America’s Polo Cup association. A judgment for $8,250 plus interest and fees was entered against David Cope, trading as DC Sports & Sponsorship, in Judge W. Dale Houff’s courtroom on Feb. 6. Cope’s current employer, Washington’s professional soccer franchise DC United, was consequently ordered to begin garnishing 25 percent of Cope’s “disposable earnings” last spring.

So congress subpoenaed you. Now what?

How the congressional subpoena process plays out.

Recently two of our loyal readers in Linden, VA were subpoenaed by the House Homeland Security Committee to explain how they managed to waltz into a White House State Dinner without an invitation.

This brought up a lot of questions so we thought we’d produce a handy guide so you would know what to expect in case you ever get a subpoena to appear before a congressional committee.

With a little help from my friends

An early Christmas present – disabled Man Resumes Hunting

Warren County resident Art Saeger hunted for the first time since 1988 at the fifth annual Wheeling’ Sportsmen Hunt at Andy Guest Park. Saeger was one of seven winners of a statewide lottery sponsored by the Virginia Chapter of the Wheelin’ Sportsmen, a committee of the National Wild Turkey Federation (NWTF). The day of feasting and hunting was co-hosted by the local NWTF chapter, Skyline Strutters of Warren; the Wheelin’ Sportsmen and Andy Guest Park.

Saeger grew up hunting grouse, rabbit, deer and squirrel on Little North Mountain in Shenandoah County with his father Henry and brother Sam. As young men the brothers worked with their dad as stone and cement masons until an automobile accident left Art an incomplete quadriplegic. He lived with his father and stepmother Shadah Saeger until he entered Warren Hospital’s Lynn Care Center in 2007 for rehabilitation.

Season’s greetings & gifts – local style

Downtown shopping options for this White Christmas season

Last minute shoppers can find Front Royal architectural shelf sitters at the Heaven Scent Shoppe, Helen’s Antiques and D & B Chocolates. Aficionados can view a complete collection at the Commerce Avenue Funkhouser office where the cashier’s cage displays multiple rows of Front Royal’s architectural history.

The figurines were produced and sold by Mrs. Agnes Rutherford on behalf of the Warren County Republican Women’s Club. Working from pictures supplied by Warren Miller the shelf sitters were made at My Home Towne Inc. in Williamsport, MD. Mrs. Rutherford sold the figures from 1995 – 2004 with the proceeds supporting scholarships in Warren County Schools. She donated the remaining shelf sitters to the Visitors’ Center.

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