Several Rappahannock citizens have joined together to form a new, county-wide organization to promote good government within the county, to encourage civility among all of our government officials and our citizens, and to act as a catalyst to people of all persuasions to work together to make Rappahannock county government work for the benefit of all of us. We call ourselves United Citizens of Rappahannock, or UCOR for short.
We have registered as a non-profit 501(c)(4) organization with the IRS, have incorporated with the Commonwealth of Virginia, and selected officers and a board of directors. A surprisingly large number of Rappahannock citizens have joined as members, and we are busily recruiting more. We are decidedly non-partisan, we will limit our efforts to local affairs, and we are now putting together our strategy to support the effective and efficient operation of the Rappahannock County government.
A 501(c)(4) organization is known as a “social welfare organization” by the IRS and, according to the IRS’ rules “must operate primarily to further the common good and general welfare of the people of the community (such as by bringing about civic betterment and social improvements).” As such, UCOR will engage in local politics by making its opinion known on local political issues which may come before the Board of Supervisors or other county government tribunals and boards, will take positions on broad issues affecting the County, will recruit and support (or oppose) candidates running for office, and will generally voice its opinion on a variety of local issues. We will not, and cannot, under IRS rules, engage directly in political campaigns or operate for the benefit of ourselves or our members.
We launched our efforts last spring by purchasing a full-page ad in the Rappahannock News, signed by 160 Rappahannock citizens, which signaled a united call for an end to the bickering, lack of civility and personal attacks that today threaten the quality of life of our County.
The ad urged citizens to promote and participate in civil discourse and sound decision-making in Rappahannock County’s governmental processes. After the ad ran, another large group of citizens came forward, offering to be part of the group and to help UCOR become a force in local government.
UCOR’s mission will succeed if it can bring improved civility and good will to our community, particularly by educating the public on issues that we deem mutually important. That will be done most effectively through a large and diverse membership, which is why we have launched the campaign to recruit new members to join our ranks. Participation as a member gives citizens the opportunity to voice their opinions and to work together to successfully accomplish these goals and to be part of an organization where local issues will benefit from civil, constructive and respectful debate
There is no charge for membership and, of course contributions (which are not tax-deductible) are welcome. Rappahannock citizens who would like to join may simply send your contact information to PO Box 14, Washington, VA 22747 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Stephen G. Brooks
Alfred S. Regnery
Cliff Miller IV
UCOR Board of Directors