News and notes from Reston (tm).

Friday, March 13, 2009

The future is yesterday: RA discovers new-fangled "web-blogs" those crazy kids keep talking about

(Note the Norman Rockwell meets Charles Kincaid depiction of "Reston")

So we might as well close up shop, as there's a new kid on the blogging block. As part of the much heralded redesign of its "Web-site," which as close as we can tell mainly features the awesome new addition of cartoony stock illustrations that look nothing like Reston, the Reston Association has added a "web-log" from RA President Robin Smyers. Or at least we assume it's from her, as posts are labeled as being authored by "Administrator Account." So you can just imagine the edgy commentary you're gonna read!

They say that “March comes in like a lion” and for each of us who serves on the Reston Association Board of Directors, March will prove to be a “roaring” month.
Whoa! Better click the "minimize" button before the kids see what you're looking at. But Smyers Administrator Account isn't afraid to touch on the controversial issues. She Administrator Account addresses the awesome new $15 million RA headquarters referendum head-on:
As Board President, I cannot tell you how to vote. However, as Robin Smyers, Member, my vote will be a resounding yes.

This is an investment for our future. As any of my fellow board members could tell you, we could simply lease new space. Because RA is a not-for-profit organization, we receive no tax advantages from leasing. That’s why owning our own facility – through either purchase or building—is a good investment for the association. And with the current economic climate, we could achieve a bargain.
Smyers Administrator Account ends her post with a request "to leave your polite comments for me." But there's no way to post comments, polite or not, on the "web-blog," so FAIL.

So yeah, wow. Let's just hope they don't find out about that "Twitter" thing the kids keep yammering on about, or soon we'll be besieged by tweets along the lines of "Plz has $15 million for new HQ? Kthxbaie" or "Just saw white stone and red mulch in front of house. Iz bad. =(."


  1. Speaking of blogs, yours is suddenly full of ads for firearms training and body armor. Are they expecting the HQ referendum to turn into a full-fledged riot?

  2. I'd be happy if they had a place where you could e-mail and ask, "is there a rule on Christmas lights that are up year round?" and other such burning issues in my neighborhood.

  3. Surprising how there has been a distinct lack of information on this "stealth" issue. Yeah, let's spend $15M more! Can't imagine what that does to the yearly fees.

  4. Before I vote, I want to know what will happen this time if there is not a quorum. Will they just "extend" the election until they get one? Or will it count as a "NO DEAL". I think it is only fair for us voters to know what RA actually indends to do so we can make a decision on voting NO or not voting at all.

  5. PO'd in North Point has a very good point. Does RA even have a plan B? Does RA expect that, no matter what, the new HQ will be approved?


Lack of a plan for a failed referendum would be clear management failure. And proof that the express wishes of homeowners in Reston do not count.

  6. Looking at the RA logo art, I'm wondering if the large building on the right is the new RA headquarters building. Also, I'm surprised they show any trees left standing. That couldn't be Snakeden Branch valley for sure!

  7. PO'ed -- The election period is already at its maximum, so if they don't get enough votes to even make a decision the issue is dropped and they will have to continue to lease a building, but they will most likely lease elsewhere. If they get enough votes and the decision is "no," they will also most likely lease elsewhere. Mind you they do not need permission from RA members to sign a lease, which means they could end up paying high rent for a place they don't own. I've heard that no matter what in about a year they'll move out of their current building.

  8. For Anon who answered PO'd: First, if the current HQ proposal fails (as I pray God it will), the Board may still use the 2005 RA HQ approval which would now allow $6.4M on a 20K SF HQ. At today's prices (<$280/SF), RA could actually buy a 23K bldg. & stay within that limit.

    If it chooses to rent, it may well stay where it is. It's current rent there is about $24/sf vs. the $30/SF it says is "market price." But then, it may just choose to stick to Restonians for failing to pass its self-aggrandizing referendum proposal and go rent something truly outlandish.

    Never put it passed a politician, even a local volunteer.

  9. "The election period is already at its maximum, so if they don't get enough votes to even make a decision the issue is dropped and they will have to continue to lease a building,"

    Yeah, that's what I thought about the covenants change. They just extended the election until they got what they wanted. Doesn't seem to matter what the "rules" are, at least not for the guys that are responsible for writing the rule book. But let a humble resident stretch a rule and the Wrath of DRB erupts. I thought when I grew up I'd be done with high school cliques...


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