4BETTER OR WORSE- The week in review
Worst break for aging sewers: Charlottesville is unable to get a slice of the stimulus pie to pay for the $22.5 million needed to replace its deteriorating sewer lines, Rachana Dixit reports in the Daily Progress.
Worst news for water and sewer users: City water rates are going up 1.12 percent for the average household, from $32.92 to $33.29 a month, while sewer rates jump 3.59 percent, from $30.57 to $31.93 a month. Albemarle County Service Authority considers a hike that sends water and sewer bills from an average $61.43 to $69.84 a month for fiscal year 2010, the DP reports.
Best news for beleaguered utility users: City gas rates decrease 1.3 percent, from an average $107.27 a month to $105.88.
Worst price gouging: Bucko's Pantry in Radford and Dublin settles a complaint that it charged unconscionable prices for gasoline after Governor Kaine declared a state of emergency on September 10, 2008, as Hurricane Ike approached the Gulf Coast, according to a release from the state attorney general's office. For instance, regular gasoline at Bucko's Pantry #1 cost $3.599 a gallon September 8 and skyrocketed to $5.799, a 61 percent increase. Bucko's must pay $2,800 to the Commonwealth, donate $800 to the American Red Cross, and pay restitution to gouged customers.
Shortest field trip: A Baker-Butler Elementary trip to Washington is canceled when one of three charter buses rear-ends another Madison County early May 29. One student and one adult are injured, and Albemarle sends school buses to retrieve the stranded students.
Shortest School Board stint: Jon Stokes decides not to seek reelection to the Albemarle School Board after serving four years, citing the obligatory spend-more-time-with-my-family reason. Planning Commissioner Eric Strucko steps up to run for the Samuel Miller District seat with Stokes' blessing.
Latest for I-64 shooter: Seventeen-year-old Brandon Dawson has charges against him dismissed May 27 for his role in the March 27, 2008, shooting spree on Interstate 64, and he's out of juvenile detention, according to Tasha Kates in the Progress.
Longest time as "best lawyer:" Brad Chandler of the Chandler Group has been listed in Best Lawyers in America for 25 years.
Longest sentence: Convicted child molester Jerry Burchett, 37, earns two life terms May 28 in Louisia Circuit Court for the forcible sodomy of a young child.
Most child porn charges: Former Eagles Landing resident Kenneth Rockwell, 49, is indicted on 10 counts of possessing videos of prepubescent children and goes to trial July 7.
Oldest alleged sexual offender: Septagenarian John Oehlerking of Staunton is charged with forcible sodomy of a 26-year-old blind and mentally retarded woman with whom he was acquainted at his apartment May 31, the News-Virginian reports.
Highest level diversity opening: William B. Harvey, UVA VP for diversity and equity, splits after four years to run International Reading Association, a nonprofit literacy group. Brian McNeill has the story in the Progress.
Fourth best city: Charlottesville lands on Kiplinger's list, behind Huntsville (Huntsville?), Albuquerque, and Washington, D.C.
Best in show: Irish wolfhound Dun Myrica Speaker of Eagle, 4, is top dog at the May 27 All-Breed Dog Show at Foxfield.
Latest Crystal Cameron sighting: The NBC29 morning anchor departed a couple of weeks ago and now is doing press for Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob McDonnell, whose campaign has $4.9 million in cash on hand, according to a Cameron release.
Most embarrassing arrest: Melissa Kelly, 48, is charged with petty theft for allegedly stealing items off Green Hill Cemetery graves in Churchville after Lori Kothbauer places a wildlife cam nearby to find out who was ripping off her son Joshua's grave, the News Leader reports.