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Falls Church News Briefs




Leading F.C. Figures Join Obama Transition Team

Falls Church-based automobile dealer and former Virginia Lieutenant Governor Donald S. Beyer, Jr., and long-time Falls Church resident Richard McCall have been brought onto the transition team of President-elect Barack Obama, the News-Press has learned.

A third Falls Church figure, Kyle Lierman, head of the Falls Church office for the Obama campaign through the election, has also joined the effort. Beyer, a former president of the Falls Church Chamber of Commerce who was the Democratic lieutenant governor of Virginia for two terms in the 1990s, was a leading fundraiser for Obama during his campaign. According to the Center for Responsive Politics, Beyer and wife Megan raised over $500,000 for Obama, and gave a total of $153,600 of their own money to federal campaigns this year. Beyer joined the Obama transition team specializing in science and technology policy, while McCall, former chief of staff to the director of the Agency for International Development (AID) during the Clinton administration, will work with the Obama transition on AID matters.

F.C. LWV Pushes for Non-Partisan Redistricting

A bill to set up a non-partisan mechanism for redrawing state and federal election districts that passed the Virginia Senate but failed in a House of Delegates sub-committee on a partisan 3-2 vote last season will be back in the next session. The Falls Church League of Women Voters (LWV) chapter is joining its statewide organization and the Virginia Chamber of Commerce to urge passage of the bill as the time is running out before the next census and 2011 redistricting of all state legislative and U.S. Congressional districts in Virginia. Sara Fitzgerald of the Falls Church LWV reported this in remarks before a joint luncheon of the Falls Church Chamber of Commerce and Merrifield Business Association at the Italian Café Tuesday. Fitzgerald cited cases of “gerrymandered” districts resulting from partisan machinations in redistricting that have often resulted in non-competitive races and resultant voter apathy. She said that progress is slow but steady as some states have reverted to a role for bi-partisan redistricting commissions devoted to a more balanced and rational approach. The Virginia Chamber supports the effort, she said, because non-competitive districts tend to favor more extremist political candidates less accountable to the general needs of the state.

Moran Named to Dem Steering Committee

U.S. Rep. Jim Moran, who represents the 8th District of Virginia that includes the City of Falls Church, was elected by his Democratic colleagues Tuesday to serve on the House Democratic Steering and Policy Committee. The committee’s role is to assist the Speaker of the House in deciding which members will chair and sit on more than 20 House committees. “We will have a robust majority in the 111th Congress, including 34 freshmen in the House,” Moran said in a statement. “The Steering Committee has its hands full determining how best to position our members to bring about the change the American people made clear they want.”

Mugging Reported Near East F.C. Metro

A Falls Church citizen reported he was mugged last week, according to News-Press sources, with his wallet and briefcase taken, by two young men claiming to be armed, as he walked to his N. Cherry Street home from the East Falls Church Metro station. The incident took place at 8:30 p.m. on Nov. 13 at a bike trail bridge crossing Tripps Run. The assailants were reported as African-American men in their 20s. The victim reported being “roughed up” but not seriously injured. N. Cherry St. neighbors also report a pattern of break-ins of cars parked on their street.

‘News-Press Live’ Monday at 7 p.m.

‘News-Press Live,’ the bi-weekly live half-hour television commentary show hosted by Falls Church News-Press owner-editor Nicholas F. Benton, resumes on Falls Church Cable Television this Monday at 7 p.m., prior to the F.C. City Council meeting. Benton’s guest will be Sally Cole, executive director of the Falls Church Chamber of Commerce.