4BETTER OR WORSE- The week in review
Biggest dump: The state Department of Environmental Quality investigates an illegal, three-quarters-of-an-acre site with eight-foot-piles of refuse at 2859 Crown Orchard Road in Batesville. According to Brandon Shulleeta in the Daily Progress, the dump may be on the 350-acre property of Crown Orchard Company magnate Henry Chiles, who says he didn't know about any dumping on his land.
Biggest vigil: UVA students turn out April 16 to decry violent homophobia after a male student and his guest are attacked early April 4 by five gay-slur-yelling white males in the Scott Stadium parking lot.
Biggest bond sale: UVA sells $250 million of something called "benchmark-level taxable Build America Bonds" April 15 to fund 19 capital projects costing $800 million. The bonds are partially subsidized by the U.S. Treasury through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, aka the "stimulus package," and the university retains its AAA rating, according to a release.
Biggest loss: Media General, parent company of the Daily Progress, posts a $21.3 million loss in the first quarter of 2009 and an 18 percent drop in revenue to $159 million. Part of the loss includes severance costs from slicing nearly 300 jobs March 31.
Biggest fundraiser- Supes' race: Dennis Rooker leads the pack with $64,100 that includes a $7,500 donation from John Grisham, the Progress reports.
Biggest fundraiser- Council race: Mayor Dave Norris reports $5,636 in donations, followed by Kristin Szakos with $2,720, and Julian Taliaferro at $1,568.
Funniest fundraising pitch: A big-headed Thomas Jefferson peeps around columns on the Rotunda, polishes a statue, gives tours, and mops floors to "Working for the Weekend" with the tagline, "He's doing his part. Are you doing yours?" The series of videos can be found on the UVA Today blog, and TJ now is on Facebook.
Least amused: Over at cvillenews.com, Waldo Jaquith dubs the big-headed Jefferson video series "so awful that it has to be watched to be believed."
Latest legal travails for Buckingham supervisor: Joe N. Chambers Jr. is indicted for felony timber theft April 14 following an allegation his logging company illegally harvested five acres in September 2007, Scott Shenk reports in the Progress. It's not the first time Chambers, 61, has been accused of harvesting the wrong wood, and Charlottesville resident H.D. Bruns II filed a lawsuit claiming Chambers cut 49 acres. The longtime supe also has tax troubles and was arrested for driving under the influence in 2008, which was reduced to reckless driving.
Most ironic: On April 15, hundreds gather to protest taxation and government spending at a tea party at the Pavilion, while Congressman Tom Perriello touts the largest middle-class tax cut in American history.
Newest historic marker: The 83,000-plus-acre Southern Albemarle Historic District gets its own marker, which notes Jefferson-influenced buildings, the bucolic Piedmont landscape of large farms and historic villages, and the early transportation network of roads and waterways.
Best deal on building permits: City Council slices fees in half for the next six months.
Best way to be a volunteer deputy: Albemarle Sheriff Chip Harding seeks search and rescue volunteers 18 and older with clean criminal backgrounds to sign up for April 27 training. Horses and ATVs welcome. Contact 972-4001 or sheriff @albemarle.org.
Best way to dispose of electronics: Crutchfield hosts another recycling event Sunday, April 26, from noon to 4pm, and with a limit of three devices such as televisions, computer monitors, computers, printers, phones, or VCRs.
Cheaper than picking up recycling: Albemarle County, which offers no curbside recycling except for requiring private haulers to take newspapers, puts out a "Green Map" telling citizens where they can go to recycle and how to make "green living" easier.