The week in review

Best phone number to have when your climatology office’s budget is threatened: Senator George Allen’s, which Pat Michaels called when the funding for his state climatology office was looking at a major cut. Allen’s intervention resulted in a minor cut instead.
Worst news for the Institute of Nuclear and Particle Physics:  Its budget took one of the worst hits of the UVA research centers. “I guess the Institute of Nuclear and Particle Physics could have benefited had we had as powerful an intermediary as the climatology department,” says Donal Day in a Bob Gibson Daily Progress article.
Best NIMBYs of the week: A proposed strip mine in Orange County has created an unlikely alliance of historic free-slave settlement residents and wine-sipping supporters of Barboursville Vineyards to fight General Shale’s request for a special use permit.
Worst election news for voting registrars: All of Virginia’s 100 delegates and 40 senators may be up for re-election in November, thanks to a court ruling that declared the Commonwealth’s redistricting plan unconstitutional.
Best news for Albemarle County voters: Maybe new districts will mean the County won’t have four different delegates.
Best indication Governor Mark Warner needed his own lawyer:  Attorney General Jerry Kilgore cancels a meeting with the governor at the last minute, and refuses to provide counsel on the redistricting ruling because Kilgore is planning to appeal the redistricting decision— a decision that Warner says should be his.
Worst description for a new governor:  “Visibly shaken,” reports the Washington Post about Warner after Kilgore’s insubordination.
Worst issue for those with short attention spans: The decades-long 29 bypass debate continues, with opponents outnumbering supporters at last week’s VDOT hearing. Its fate is still undetermined.
Best supporters for native species: The 29 bypass opponents won’t let the salamanders go voiceless.
Best opportunity for teens whose parents won’t send them to military school: The Albemarle County School Board seems poised to approve an Air Force Junior ROTC program at Monticello High School.
Best separation of city government and community: City spokesman Maurice Jones declines to write a sympathy letter for the community group formed to discuss racial issues in the aftermath of the attacks on UVA students. Much as he sympathized with the group’s agenda, according to a March 16 Daily Progress story, Jones tells the grassroots group they’ll have to write their own letter to the victims.
Worst realization for City Councilors who want to take part in community groups: In the same Progress article, Jake Mooney reports that when councilors Meredith Richards, Maurice Cox, Kevin Lynch, and Blake Caravati all showed up for the same meeting about the UVA assaults, Lynch and Caravati had to leave to avoid creating an unannounced, and therefore illegal, Council meeting. And Richards admits, “I’m not sure whether our presence is contributing to the process or not.”
Worst excuse for why Charlottesville High teens assaulted UVA students: The boredom defense— or the “lack of teenage activities,” as the Progress quotes the Reverend Alvin Edwards.