4BETTER OR WORSE- The week in review
Worst mass shooting in American history: Virginia Tech student Cho Seung-hui goes on a killing spree April 16, laughing maniacally, according to one survivor on NPR, and takes 33 lives, including his own.
Most senseless: See above.
Windiest: A mighty big wind knocks out power throughout the area April 15 and 16, dousing the lights in more than 15,000 homes and businesses.
Biggest fibber? Charlottesville Circuit Court Clerk Paul Garrett has $52K in funding pulled when the State Compensation Board discovers that land records weren't online as Garrett had previously certified three times, according to Progress reporter Liesel Nowak.
Biggest shift in City Council races: Incumbent Kevin Lynch announces he won't seek a third term April 14.
Biggest budget: Rolling-in-cash Charlottesville City Councilors pass a $122 million budget 4-1 April 10, with dissenter Lynch saying, "We are spending a lot of money that is difficult to justify," Seth Rosen reports in the Daily Progress. That includes nearly $1 million for rescue services still TBD. Council also approves a tax rate of 95 cents per $100 of assessed value, an additional $260 hit for the average homeowner, who already pays $2,262.
Most surprising tax rate: Albemarle Board of Supervisors approve a 68 cents tax per $100 of assessed value April 11, two cents less than what was predicted and six cents under the current 74 cents rate. Supes also bump the car decal rate by 10 bucks.
Worst blow to soccer moms: The Supes refuse to approve a rezoning to allow a big soccer facility on 10 acres zoned rural//agricultural.
Latest pizza delivery heist: A Domino's driver is robbed in the 1400 block of Hazel Street April 14, according to the DP. Police are looking for two men wearing coats and hoods.
Most emissions: Virginia's carbon dioxide output rises at nearly twice the national rate– 34 percent compared to 18 percent– from 1990 to 2004.
Biggest condo fire: Four units are damaged April 10 at Chatham Ridge near Pen Park.
Biggest windfall: Columbia University reaps John Kluge largesse to the tune of $400 million– or at least it will when he dies. One of the largest gifts to an American university, the money will go for student financial aid.
Next biggest bucks: UVA gets its largest donation ever April 12: $100 million from Frank Batten for a school of leadership and public policy. Meanwhile on the same day, in-state undergraduate tuition and fees go up $655 to $8,500, an 8.3 percent increase.
Biggest plunge in real estate prices: The median sales price of a house in the Charlottesville region drops more than $26,000 in the first quarter of 2007 to $263,350, according to the Charlottesville Area Association of Realtors. And hardest hit in the region is Nelson County, where median prices plummet by $82,000.
Biggest on the block: Natural Bridge is for sale for $32.5 million.
Best time to dump hazardous wastes: April 28 from 9am to 2pm at the Rivanna Solid Waste Authority's Material Utilization Center, aka the Ivy landfill.
Best way to feast on Virginia's bounty: At food festivals, which the Virginia Department of Ag and Consumer Services lists on its website at vdacs.virginia.gov/news/festival.shtml.
Most ambitious proclamation: Mayor David Brown declares war on world poverty and AIDS April 16 in support of UN goals.
Best lawyer to sue the pants off them that wronged ya: Brad Chandler, senior partner of the Chandler Group, is named one of the top 3,000 plaintiffs' attorneys by a publication called Lawdragon.