Crime & Courts

Randy Smoot manslaughter appeal denied

After hearing two and a half days of testimony, the jury deliberated for three and a half hours before returning a verdict of voluntary manslaughter. Smoot was sentenced in September 2018 to eight months in jail. Accounting for time already served behind bars, Smoot was released in December 2018. […]

Crime & Courts

Marian Bragg court date set for February

Circuit Court Judge Jeffery W. Parker has scheduled a two-day bench trial for February 20 and 21, 2020 in the matter of Marian Bragg v Rappahannock County Board of Supervisors, a case known as Bragg 1. Filed in 2016, the suit will finally be heard on the merits after having generated hundreds of pages of documents and clocked hours and hours of court and attorney time. […]

Politics/Government

Washington Town Council prepares for new post office

“I feel very confident for the post office to stay in the town of Washington,” said Mayor Fred Catlin. “From what I gather, it has been a done deal, but we just need to get the official signatures on pieces of paper. I hope I’m not cursing things by saying that, but I believe that is where we are, it just needs to get off peoples desks . . .” […]

Politics/Government

BOS approves FY20 budget; squelches Code of Conduct; votes down Planning chair

A fiscal year 2020 budget totaling $26,129,281 was adopted by the Rappahannock County Board of Supervisors at its regular meeting Monday, while at the same time it tabled indefinitely by a 4-1 vote a Code of Conduct and Ethics proposed over a year ago.In addition, by a 3-2 vote, the board chose not to re-appoint Planning Commission chair Gary Light — tasked with overseeing development of the county’s new Comprehensive Plan — for another four-year term. […]

Crime & Courts

Potential defendant in county probe retains counsel

The investigation was touched off by a letter from Rappahannock County Treasurer Debbie Knick to the county’s Board of Supervisors in February 2017. In the letter, Knick accused her own county government of mismanagement, including failure to follow proper expense and payroll procedures and lack of oversight of budgeting and spending. […]

Accidents/Fires/Floods

Crossing the line

The driver of this large delivery truck belonging to Merchants Grocery Company told an emergency responder from VDOT that he liked to hug the white shoulder line while driving. Only this afternoon while heading east […]

Politics/Government

County’s FY20 budget process approaches finish line

Schools, Electoral Board make final push for salary hikes, social worker position: At one of its few remaining budget meetings Monday night, the Rappahannock County Board of Supervisors reviewed current department requests in excess of the county’s advertised proposed FY20 budget, in doing so taking no final action. […]

Land Use/Zoning

BZA narrowly approves retroactive permit for farm building made residence “To turn a blind eye… encourages more of the same”

The issue of what constitutes a family apartment on the same property as a primary residence is a thorny topic that the county’s boards frequently wrestle with. At its April 24 meeting, the Board of Zoning Appeals heard from an applicant that not only wanted to convert her current residence into a family apartment, but also wanted a retroactive permit change on another structure on her property. […]

Agriculture

More women farmers in Virginia

The U.S. Department of Agriculture conducts the census every five years. The 2017 census collected more detailed demographic information about the nation’s farmers than in previous years.It reported that there are 25,509 female farmers in Virginia, an increase of 18 percent from 2012.
The number of male farmers declined 4.8 percent to 45,085 over the same period. Some of these men and women are couples who farm together. […]