News and notes from Reston (tm).

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

RA Board Elections: This Time, A Real Endorsement From a Group That Just Won't Let a Wacky, Sitcom-Like Misunderstanding Go

Screen shot 2010-02-18 at 8.53.25 PM.jpgRemember that minor brouhaha about the Reston Association endorsing unwittingly giving free publicity to coincidentally mentioning three RA Board candidates in an e-mail, only not as an endorsement? Yeah, that was awesome. Now another Reston-area group has endorsed three candidates of its own, which quite coincidentally are not the same three candidates who benefitted from the RA's largesse electioneering incompetence. Who'da thunk it?

Apparently the folks at Save Brown's Chapel haven't gotten over that wacky, sitcom-like misunderstanding about building a massive rec center/juicery on top of one of Reston's few remaining open spaces. Making the second-best video ever about Reston apparently wasn't enough to satisfy their bloodlust, so now they're endorsing Joe Leighton, Peter Greenberg and Ken Knueven. What's up with that?

Remember last summer when the Reston Association Board of Director's [sic] planned to destroy Brown's Chapel Park and replace it with a $100 million county facility? The RA Board was working behind closed doors with the Reston Community Center (RCC) Board and was prepared to move this initiative forward.

Remember the meetings where hundreds of Reston Association members supported the coalition to Save Brown's Chapel and protested loud enough for the Board to notice that they would not be allowed to destroy one of our parks?

Remember the lack of openness and transparency between RA Board leadership and its members?

The Brown's Chapel fiasco underscored the dangerous outcome that can occur when the work of the RA Board is performed in closed executive session ultimately putting members' interests at risk. That scenario resulted in RA Board members rubber-stamping a $100 million facility that would ruin a beautiful park, destroy precious open space and cede acres of our valuable land to the county. Preventing this disaster required the actions and voices of the 1,500 Restonians who stood together and who signed a petition to force the RA Board to listen and finally to scrap the project after spending almost $100,000 of our money on a feasibility study.
Geez, guys. Haven't you heard of "water under the bridge?" Or at least "massive rec center over the open space?"
The Coalition to Save Brown's Chapel has endorsed the following candidates:

Joe Leighton - At-Large. Joe was the only current RA board member to take a stand early in the process and to send an alarm to the community. When Joe tried to make a motion in June 2009 to eliminate Brown's Chapel as a development site, not a single RA board member seconded his motion. It was months later after the RA board finally felt the pressure of its members that Joe's motion was passed. Joe is a leader who takes his job seriously and understands that he represents all RA members.

Peter Greenberg - North Point. Peter, a 14-year resident of North Reston, was the first person to sound the alarm about the destruction of Brown's Chapel Park. Peter worked tirelessly on the Brown's Chapel Park issue and was the first person who vowed to help put RA parks and open spaces in a "Conservation Trust". Peter, a successful businessman with extensive senior executive experience and a strong background in finance, is an outstanding North Point candidate.

Ken Knueven - Lake Anne / Tall Oaks. Ken will bring significant corporate experience to the RA board. For more than 30 years Ken has been instrumental in the development, growth and leadership of global organizations and currently manages Strategic Federal Programs for Microsoft. He values the neighborhood pool concept over the consolidation of mega locations, and will work toward protecting the interests of RA members against the mega-pool replacement concept People who live in this district should remember it was only a few years ago that Tall Oaks neighbors had to protest to the RA Board in order to keep their pool open. Ken will also lead in helping Lake Anne residents have a voice in dealing with the issues facing the aging RELAC operations.
SBC is having a meet-and-greet or something with these three candidates at 6:30 p.m. March 1 at -- wait for it! -- Brown's Chapel. We just wonder if the RA will "accidentally" send out their three names in a fancy e-mail.


  1. I'll be curious to see what impact this E-mail from Save Brown's Chapel will have on the RA elections, given the usual low turnout of voters. I'm assuming that all of the 1,514 people who signed the petition to save Brown's Chapel received this E-mail. It appears that the overwhelming majority of those signers live in Reston, ao that's a huge block of voters who may well be swayed by this message.

  2. if 1,514 people signed a petition to save the park - why do people say that it was a small group of NIMBY homeowners? That seems like a big group of NIMBY homeowners.

  3. Save Brown’s Chapel—talk about a puppet show! A group of north Reston homeowners hire a advertising company to basically manipulate everyone else into ensuring that their beautiful (and free!) vistas go unchanged. Wow…so now, what? They want to really help out south Reston by giving them Joe? Give me a f*#@ing break. How self serving can you get? Are they going to hire the same firm to do a professional advertising campaign for them? This is far more dangerous than the foolishness of the Big Dig email…this is PROFESSIONL MANIPULATION—and all of Reston should be violently opposed to the direction that this seems to be taking.

  4. Violently opposed? The only thing I'm violently opposed to is Leighton spitting his food when he talks. Seriously Joe, learn to wipe your mouth.

  5. Anon 11:08 I think it was a small group of No.Reston homeowners that were able to strike fear into the hearts of the little folk. "They want to tear down the chapel, they want to tear down the chapel!" Queue angry mob. Personally I thought the SBC group should have been ashamed of themselves for shutting down any opportunity for any kind of discussion. They made the topic so incendiary it really was shocking. I don't trust anything that they advocate. They've shown their true colors, and I agree that we should all be highly suspicious of any group that can and does use professional advertising, it's just not a level playing field, and yes, I realize that a level playing field maybe a naive expectation on my part, but really? Hired guns in a homeowner's association election?

  6. I myself was endorsed today by Micheal William the next Director of the Board of supervisors who said:

    "I would like you all to know that Rod Koozmin is one of those people that does what they say they will do and isn’t afraid to give of his time and experience for a cause he believes in. When I was running for the Hunter Mill District Board of Supervisors seat in 2007, Rod contacted me and asked how he could help, he joined my kitchen cabinet, passed out my literature, along with that of Gary Baise, Steve Hunt and the rest of the Republican ticket, he showed up at back to school nights, and helped on election day. I invite you to take a close look at Rod Koozmin; I think you will find that he has what it takes to represent you on the RA Board. I encourage you to pass this email along to other Restonians to assure that Rod will have this opportunity to work for you."

    And I would at this time like to endorse:

    Rengin Morro a scholar a woman , a mother and a person who will add much to the new RA board.

    I would also like to endorse Guy Rando who new out of college worked on the Lake Ann Plaza forty years ago and will be able to contribute a wealth of knowledge to the new board.

  7. Does Guy Rando want this endorsement?

  8. Awwww. How precious, Rod. The Troll has a crush on you. Isnt' that just adorable.

  9. I like Joe Layton. If I don't win I hope he dose. I am pleased that he stood up and supported the keep Browns chapel which seemed to me to be the compelling thing to do at that time.

    But some have written to me saying: "I would never vote for Joe Leighton. He told me he was for indoor tennis, but capitulated and went with the Brown's Chapel group, ingratiating himself to that clique, and spouting their motto."

    I think Joe now supports the construction of indoor tennis courts without raising dues. How this would be accomplished I'm not so sure. Would it be at the expense of other needs. The maintenance needs of Reston are subject to increase.
    Would the need to maintain this indoor tennis courts increase maintenance costs even more? I have seen the new clay tennis courts needing a lot of maintenance. Do all Reston citizens benefit from this maintenance?

    I have questioned why we need to subsidise indoor tennis above other sports? When I went to the Browns Chapel Recreation Center Proposal District Meetings and I heard a lady who did play tennis say that she played tennis and would like to play in the winter but didn't expect others to pay for her sport.

    If tennis players could prove that other similar upper middle class communities had community paid for indoor tennis out of proportion to what Reston had I think they would make a much better case for it. If there was some way indoor tennis players could somehow pay for indoor tennis courts and Reston could somehow help, I think that would have more widespread appeal.-Rod Koozmin

  10. Anon 11:18 (Smeyers?)

    Sorry, I don't think they were a small group of NIMBY people who were only acting to save their interests.

    If you actually looked at the absolutely idiotic plan that was set forth by RA/RCC it was a lose lose for Reston. $90 million dollars funded ENTIRELY by Reston and losing our largest swath of useful open space to boot.

    If you like indoor activities join the Y or drive to Cub Run. The plan on the table was stupid and needed to be shut down.

  11. Whether it was a good idea or a bad idea there was never a chance to discuss it. The campaign effectively terminated discussion. That’s what I hated about it, and I’m sorry but I think there is something way off about a group of homeowners hiring an ad agency! For crap sake, present information, not a freaking ad campaign!

  12. What gets me is that groups like SBC never go away. Once formed, they are unable to cede whatever power they summoned so they move to new issues. If they DONE SAVED IT, they should have the good grace to get on with life.

    And like Anon 11:18 and 1:10, I thought they were pretty self-serving NIMBY's who shut down anyone who had a different point of view. They made me feel like . . . a conservative living in Reston when there's an election on. Gee, I wondered where they learned their tactics?

  13. I'm going to have to disagree with you on that, HKCD. While I don't think that the plan on the table was the one to advance (in my opinion, mostly because of cost and not so much because of location) I don't think shutting it down completely was the answer.

    Just take a look at our current recreational facilities and then imagine how much more taxed they will become when we get all of this new development (and the subsequent influx of Restonians it will bring) that seems to be on the table.

    If we're going to address this question ever, it would seem that now is the best time especially while property values are depressed and, consequently, any property that we want to acquire for this would be cheaper. However, I'm still amenable to other solutions, which could include expanding current facilities. Maybe we could acquire/condemn the Gulag's golf course/parking lot and put the facility there? Or take over the USAA building which always seems underutilized, if utilized at all. Of course, there's always my favorite: flatten Winterthur and put it all there.

    In the end, I don't care what the solution looks like as long as we get roller derby.

    And, of course they're NIMBYs but justifiably so. Heck, if you were going to dump such a thing in my backyard, I'd be moving to squash it as well.

  14. It was not shut down by SBC so much as RA realized there was strong opposition to the plan and abandoned it.

    Anon 4:03 if you are a R then the idea of $90 million dollars funded entirely by Reston homeowners should have put you off right away.

    Convict, I will disagree with you that the location was entirely wrong for the idea.

    The open space is very important to the character of Reston and is used by residents, and once ceded will never be returned.

    Though your ideas of using some of the office space is not so bad. But at a time when they are cutting deep into education and other vital county services, paying $90 of homeowner money for a rec facility that is not needed is a bad idea no matter where it is.

    There are other rec centers that people can use.
    RCC, HCC, Cub Run, Audrey Moore, Lee District, Mt Vernon, South Run, Providence, Oak Marr, and Spring Hill.

    For the $90 million price tag divied out, it would be cheaper for everyone to join a gym who wants indoor tennis and swimming.

    I think SBC did Reston a service. The RCC/RA plan was bad and they way they went about trying to realize it was sleazy.

  15. I think SBC cornered the sleaze market with the professionally produced video.

  16. What is so sleazy about marshalling all your available resources for a local-interest campaign?

    SFAIK, the video was made pro bono in any case.

  17. Peasant From Less Sought After South RestonFebruary 23, 2010 at 5:30 PM

    Part of the reason for the virulent reaction to the idea of a rec center at Browns Chapel may have been because the well was already poisoned by two other controversies last year, the RA headquarters referendum and the stream restoration project. I suspect in all three cases people thought, correctly or not, that their concerns were not being heard and that the three projects were just going to be ramrodded through by the powers that be.

  18. Like I said, HKCD, I was opposed mostly for financial reasons. While I wouldn't want Brown's Chapel to disappear if there are other reasonable alternatives, I'm not opposed to swapping one recreational facility for another, especially when you'll be taking a less intensively used facility and putting in a more intensively used one.

    I acknowledge that FCPR already has some pretty nice facilities, but these facilities are fairly intensely used already and, more importantly, aren't local. In order to get to any of the FCPR facilities that you've listed, you must drive. None are within walking/biking distance and none are available by less than three hops via mass transit.

    As far as RCC, isn't the pool there pretty much already maxed out? I know that the lanes at the Y are close to capacity. And where would you add other kinds of recreational exercise equipment? Should we give up the meeting rooms or theatre to put in a workout room and/or basketball court? Because of the surrounding geography, it would be very difficult to expand that facility without removing some existing retail, which wouldn't be a problem for me since there's nothing in that lead row except Rite Aid that I would miss.

    Honestly, I think a far superior alternative would be to expand the YMCA even if that means that RA gives the Y the money to fund the project. Flatten the faux Macaroni Grill and/or relocated the Reston property yard.

  19. Ooohh -- I like Convict's last idea!

  20. Its election time and people usually out think themselves. The RA board has their three slate of candidates; for a rubber stamp board.

    RA memnbers would be served well by Peter Greenberg, Ken Knuevem and Joe Leighton. For those RA members who are involved they see a board who counts on their members keeping quiet. For those RA members who just want to have a great community, dont rely on your board to recommend their own canidates.

    Save Browns Chapel group had a large, broad base of supporters. The RA board wants all of its members to forget so they can return to their own agenda, not its members.

  21. SBC is just one of the many groups believing they are representing the best interests of their constituents... RCC, ARCH, RCA all do the same...

  22. I don't think SBC was all that broad based, what they were was really well organized and professionally represented,pro-bono or not. I think it's pretty presumptuous to assume the 3 candidates with support of the current RA board will be checking their brains at the door and getting in line. They seem to be thoughtful individuals, I wouldn't assume they won't have their own thoughts and opinions.

  23. I'm writing in Dubya, Dick and Condi because, lord only knows, they can't possibly do any worse than they did the first two times around.

  24. Dont forget the RA members received $100k of consultant work to justify the destruction of a park. It was all a soon we forget.

  25. I can tell you as a member of SBC that no money was paid for the video and no children, plants or animals were harmed in it's making.

    Seriously, the video was produced pro bono by a local firm who volunteered their services.

  26. I will be more of speak up more board member then Joe. I don't think there's much doubt about that.

    And I have it on my goal statement to never vote for a expensive feasibility study without a mandate from the people of Reston.

  27. Rod... Proofread. If you want votes you don't want to come across as an uneducated fool.

  28. Fairfax County wants to redevelop much of Reston for higher density, greatly increasing their tax revenue. As a result of the increased population we will need more indoor recreation facilities. Since FC will be the beneficiary of the increased tax base -- they should pay to build a rec center and they should build it on FC land. Not to mention the developers stand to make millions on RCIG and metro, the county could require them to provide rec facilities (through a proffer).

    Why did RCC go after RA land instead of partnering with the county when there were county-owned sites that were much more appropriate for a rec center? Why did the RA board even entertain the idea of giving away RA land that belongs to it's members?

    And most importantly how can the RCC, who apparently can't afford to buy batteries for their boom boxes, build and operate a $100 million dollar facility without raises the SD5 tax rate?

  29. Here are the facts:

    The professionally made video was released a week before the RA board meeting and after the decision had already been made. It was cute. It was fun. It had no bearing on what happened.

    It was a professional production but the idea for the song did not come from the agency and the people in it were locals. It was a small pro bono project by a local agency that had a bone to pick with RA. They are not alone in that regard. The agency had a less than cordial relationship with SBC.

    SBC succeeded because it was well organized. It used social media. It moved fast and constantly had RA on the defensive. It was an unfair fight. RA made every PR mistake in the the book. It would have been more fun if they were better equipped.

    The SBC viewpoint was represented at all the district meetings. RA hoped to divide and conquer but learned that the views were more widely held. There were over 1500 who signed the petition - and North Point is not that densely populated.

    SBC campaigned to maintain green space, the values of Reston and fiscal responsibility - not just a white building.

    There was a saying in WW2 that the bombers knew that they were over the target when they encountered anti-aircraft fire. I take it from the SBC critics and detractors above that SBC is over the target again.

  30. Rod,

    Be nice to Joe. At least when he speaks it will make sense.

  31. "SBC succeeded because it was well organized. It used social media. It moved fast and constantly had RA on the defensive. It was an unfair fight. RA made every PR mistake in the the book."

    LOL! You sound like an O-bot defending the Messiah's efforts to grab control of the health care industry. The RA had a stupid, vastly expensive idea that the majority of the people hated - oh, how unfair it was that opponents of this idea organized to put a stop to it! The RA had the power to mail (and email) their lying propaganda to us at any time, and could set the terms of any public discussion, but somehow their opponents had all the advantages. Poor widdle RA, boo hoo hoo.

    After the experience with the RA headquarters and the rec center, I'm opposed to anything Smyers wants to do on general principles, and I'll vote for those whom I think will keep her sleazy and mendacious future plans in check.

  32. Jane Wong, who knows a lot of people, told me Fairfax County knows it owes Reston money and that's why they built South gate. I think it's called South gate, I've never been there.

    If I had been on the board I wouldn't of voted for the initial feasibility study and would of tried to convince some of the board not to vote for it. I should of been on the board and replaced Jen Blackwell when she left since I had come in third. But the board is just not inclined toward democratic inclinations or me.

    Whoever wins I hope it's among the seven who were not endorsed by RA, the Magnificent Seven as it were! In the movie the Magnificent Seven ride in and rescue a small town from bandits raiding and stealing their resources.

  33. Clearly the sign of an open mind, 2:33. You are opposed to anything that a Smyers administration might propose just because it's Smyers?

    You sound like you're a member of the party of "No, you can't" in general and a Senator from that same party in particular.

  34. Joe Leighton was the only member of the board who very early expressed concerns regarding the Headquarters and Browns Chapel issues.

    Numerous times the board leadership tried to cut Joe down, telling him he was “out of order” and dismissed him. RA board leadership even tried to keep him out of board committee meetings by stating they were being held in "executive session". When Joe did not stand down, RA legal counsel and Robin had a “meeting” with him….

    Other than Joe Leighton, it appears to many members that the the RA board has more allegiance to Fairfax County than to its members.

    RA members should be thankful that we have Joe Leighton looking out for us. He is a dedicated public servant. Vote for Joe.

  35. Anon 8:28 = Leightron's campaign manager

  36. And he's a plumber. That's more useful than sharpening knives.

    I do have the right Joe. Don't I.

  37. In response to Anon comments. Are you honestly trying to say that SBC has an advantage over RA and RCC who have budgets in the millions (our tax dollars and dues). When they wanted an indoor rec center they spent 100 thousand dollars on facility planning consultants. They have a staff dedicated to communications and PR and yet they still hired an outside PR agency to help them. They spent thousands on legal counsel. They can send out communications to every resident of Reston.

    SBC is a group of volunteer activist with no budget working in their spare time. Not a level playing field? No it's not but SBC is the underdog here.

  38. Joe Leighton is a plumber???? Would that be one of Nixon's plumbers? You know, Chuck Colson used to have a place for the repentant here in our Muave Mecca.

  39. If your community park or green space is about to be bulldozed I think you might want an organization in place like SBC to help you and your neighbors get the word out. The RA board was very negligent in the indoor rec process, they were going to give away RA park land for a county rec facility and only use Reston money to pay for it. It was simply an idea that should never have made it out of a brainstorming session. Apparently, not one representative on the RA board was willing to stand up and object to that scheme and the subsequent board decisions to spend the money on the facility planners and land planners, they were all unanimous board decisions.
    Hopefully the next board will not be in lock step and we will not need these watch groups to be so vigilant - but thank goodness they are.

  40. I think the above commenter's remark about the fight not being fair with SBC and RA was made in the light favorable to SBC, saying how RA were incompetent and did not have the ability to keep up with SBC's agility.

    It was made as a put down to RA, not to SBC. Read, then read again. (That applies to your posts people! Oh but for an 'edit' function.)

  41. 12:41 pm - "If your community park or green space is about to be bulldozed I think you might want an organization in place like SBC to help you and your neighbors get the word out"...Amen to that. RCC and RA both were banking on the community being silent and going along. Without SBC the Browns Chapel project would be going full steam ahead. A joint RCC/RA committee had approved the name: Robert E. Simon Recreation Center.

    Only after SBC was formed and then communicated to RA members throughout Reston, did the RA board take notice.

    Peter Greenberg, who is running for North Point was the first RA resident to sound an alarm. Pete has advocated putting all of RA member parks and open space in a conservation trust. This is the only way to prevent future RA boards from cutting side deals on special projects.

  42. I like Mr. Greeberg's idea.

    It would be nice if some of the other candidates besides Ron (no offense Ron) came here and posted up their thoughts and answered questions.


    I'm curious to know what Mr. Knueven's thoughts are about RELEAC. He mentioned it in his statement but it lacks specifics.

  43. Hey Convict - Good idea regarding the Reston YMCA. The RCC rents out their pool to groups so there is little time for free swim. The Reston YMCA pool on the other hand has tons of capacity. So from RCC’s eyes they need a new big pool. However from the eyes of the YMCA, they need more members.

    For those who haven’t been to the 53,000 sq. ft. Reston YMCA, they should check it out. They have an indoor track, basketball courts, pool, modern equipment, large exercise rooms and towel service. It is run like a private club, and has room for growth. The pool is empty many times during the day. The best part of it for those people who don’t want to use the YMCA, they don’t have to pay.

    The YMCA has been open for more than five years, yet they are nowhere near capacity. So if we build a new facility with a pool what would happen to the YMCA? The Y is a much better facility than Cub Run, which is a relatively new County Rec center.

  44. "You are opposed to anything that a Smyers administration might propose just because it's Smyers?"

    At this point, yes. She has a proven track record of mendaciously advancing expensive bad ideas. I was happy when the even more horrible Blackwell went away, but then Smyers proved a great disappointment. I think the verdict is in: Smyers cannot be trusted.

    "You sound like you're a member of the party of "No, you can't" in general and a Senator from that same party in particular."

    I take pride in saying NO to bad, expensive ideas. I will always say NO to bad, expensive ideas. I will always vote for the party and the candidate who says NO to bad, expensive ideas. "No, you can't!" is precisely the correct response to bad, expensive ideas.

    "I think the above commenter's remark about the fight not being fair with SBC and RA was made in the light favorable to SBC, saying how RA were incompetent and did not have the ability to keep up with SBC's agility."

    If one party in a debate is incompetent and politically deaf, and is consequently defeated, that does not mean the fight was "unfair". Incompetent bumblers with bad ideas should be opposed and defeated, and nobody should have any pity for them when they are defeated.

  45. 3:17

    I think you are missing the 'fair fight' point entirely. (Though I was not original poster so her's a grain of salt)

    The fair fight was not meant in anyway to disparage the efforts of SBC or to call the fight unfair in a real substantive way, rather it was a facetious comment aimed at showing how RA were as you put it bumblers.

    I don not think the commenter was trying to say that we should feel pity for RA.

  46. HCKD said...
    I like Mr. Greeberg's idea.

    It would be nice if some of the other candidates besides Ron (no offense Ron) came here and posted up their thoughts and answered questions.


    Rod: I also like the idea especially with the new documents which I and many Reston citizens opposed that allows Reston to divest itself of it's lands. In that election I was the only candidate who spoke out against the new papers. I think Joe was for them as was all the board who erected large billboard sized banners all over Reston in order to tell the citizens how to vote. Finally after extending the election several weeks they did.

    I did email the candidates early on in the race suggesting that posting on the Restonian would be a good way to let voters get familiar with your ideas. So far none have come.

  47. So is this right?

    We have Dave Robinson at large, Kevin Danaher Lake Ann/Tall Oaks and Micheal E. Collins sneakily endorsed by the RA

    And Joe Leighton at large, Ken Knuevian- Lake Ann/Tall Oaks and Ken Knueven endorsed by the Brown Chapel Group

    Then I was endorsed by Micheal Williams and I endorsed Guy Rando and Rengin Morro

    And Patric Shipp is not endorsed by far.

    I sort of wish someone would step up to the plate and endorse Patric.

  48. At least the other candidates aren't posting things, or they are just using Anonymous posting, which is one big thing in your favor as far as I'm concerned, Rod, but I do hope you are targeting your audience in ways other than here - sometimes it seems like you spend much of your day posting here! ;-) My sense that The Restonian has a core readership that is fairly small even in comparison to the small percentage of voters who come out to vote at these elections.

  49. I have decided not to appear at the coming ARCH and the Browns Chapel meetings. I view Joe Leighton and both groups as a ray of hope against the totally corrupt and morally bankrupt Reston board and do not like appearing against him and anyway 99% of them are going to vote for Joe as is only logical. I feel the greatest area of hope for my campaign and Reston exists where the corrupt RA board and those predisposed to Joe have no influence, among those who do not usually vote and who had the greatest effect in my last campaign as well as the thinking citizens of Reston. They knocked the socks off Reston when the results came in the last time I ran. If interested in what I would of said (if I have time with ten canidates there) readers can go to my blog Rod's Sharpening Service or Sharpening in Reston to read my lengthy reply to the questions the moderator will ask-soon to be updated. Do this by clicking on the photo then on the blog. I appreciate the efforts ARCH made to be as fair as possible with Joe as their treasurer.

  50. Anon 2:33 of Feb. 24:

    I don't know why you were up in the wee hours of the morning, but I have to tell you that I laugh out loud every time I read that line...

    "Poor widdle RA, boo hoo hoo."

    Somehow Elmer Fudd is just the perfect metaophor for the rec center fiasco. To which I would add:

    "Poor widdle RA and Wobin, boo hoo hoo"

  51. Smyers leaves the RA Board with this election. She was horrible but she's gone. Here's hoping she doesn't get appointed to some RA committee to haunt us further.

    It looks like the SBC's endorsed candidates are Republicans and Big Dig's are Democrats which is really a waste as partisan fights will not advance the best interests of Reston.

    Seems some of the Big Dig crowd are scared stiff Joe will try to become RA president if he's re-elected. He should address that during this campaign.

    The PPAC delivered their recommendations for tennis, swimming and enchancements of Browns Chapel existing baseball fields to the RA Board tonight.

    Seems RA members ought to expect the RA candidates to take a position of those recommendations during this election which none of the material generated by the candidates to date have revealed.

  52. Well the RA tries to blast 2 Candidates by saying we disrupted meetings and they received "several calls" but no such callers have been presented. Cate sends out a email saying:

    Last night’s
    > Homeowner Workshop on Reserves was an education program; not
    > a Board or Committee Meeting. We have received
    > several calls from individuals that attended the Workshop
    > last night indicating their frustration with the lack of
    > respect shown by those RA Board Candidates who attended the
    > event. Specifically, mention was made that: 1) the
    > Candidates “sat in the
    > back of the room talking campaign strategy”
    > while the speaker(s) were making presentations; and 2) one
    > of the Candidates made a “campaign promise
    > plug” during the question and answer portion of
    > the Workshop.
    > I respectfully
    > request, that you refrain from interrupting future Reston
    > Association sponsored recreational and/or education programs
    > during your campaign period.
    > Regards --
    > Cate

    Both of the Candidates neither sat in the last row but the third row or were in fact "disruptive". Why would a candidate be disruptive? You can read all of this in my blog where I will post the whole unedited thing.

    It's clear though the RA is incensed enough to openly endorse (in a sneaky way) it's favored candidates and try to tear down candidates I guess that they feel are a threat.

    This tampering with the election is very unfortunate.

  53. It's good news the RA must be desperate to do crap like this.

  54. uhhhh ... i wouldn't count on SBC folks being repubs.

  55. I think the big dig crowd or RA are more scared of Rod or more specifically the concept of two way communication, or Democracy in Reston.

  56. RA board has their head in the sand with no regards to its members. Services have gone down, while spending is up, with more spending on the way. This is a homeowners association whose board has gone wild.

    Unless RA members vote in candidates who will keep their eye on services and dues, we can only expect more of the same.

  57. This is not about Republicans versus Democrats. I am not a Republican, but I am fed-up with RA.
    RA has forgotten that they are a home owners association. Their mission is to protect our property values and to enhance the Reston quality of life.

    Fairfax County is trying to slip thousands of residential units into the RCIG. Our HOA should be outraged. Instead their only concern is 'please make sure to include more low income housing'. Excuse me -- they are supposed to be protecting our home values, not working for Kathy Hudgins, who sold out to developers long ago.

    I think it's more than a coincidence that 2 of the RA directors are precinct captains for the Hunter Mill Democratic party (Richard Chew and Frank Lynch) and one director (Kathleen Driscoll McKee) is a former aide to Kathy Hudgins.

  58. Anon 12:59 You forget that RA is not just any hoa but one created to advance the objectives of its founding and founder which included diversity of ethnicity and socio-economic class.

    Protecting your speculative real estate investments is not its first priority but an ancillary benefit of an open and diverse community as evidenced by the recent assessments.

    I too am fed up with RA putting the interest of the 10% of Restonians who play tennis by spending $3-5mm on an indoor tennis facility ahead of the rest of us.

  59. "Protecting your speculative real estate investments is not its first priority"

    Actually, chief, it is. Read page 9 of this:

    The purpose of the Association is: "to interpret, administer, and enforce the protective covenants and restrictions of this
    Deed in such a manner as to conserve, protect, and enhance the value of all real property subject to the Deed" [i.e., our houses]

    Nowhere in the Deed is the "benefit of an open and diverse community" mentioned.

    It should be obvious that an increase of low-income housing in Reston damages and decreases the value of existing property.