Transparency News, 9/24/21


September 24, 2021
follow us on TwitterFacebook & Instagram


state & local news stories

Tensions erupted at Wednesday night's Frederick County Board of Supervisors meeting when Shawnee Supervisor David Stegmaier accused three board members of being antagonistic and in a “power struggle” for control of the body. The mood became heated when Stegmaier criticized Back Creek Supervisor Shawn Graber, Gainesboro Supervisor J. Douglas McCarthy and Red Bud Supervisor Blaine Dunn for opposing the board's May 12 decision to award Texas-based EF Johnson a contract to replace the county’s antiquated public safety radio system. He accused them of being controlling and having a high "level of antagonism and suspicion." Then Stegmaier was accused of being responsible for the board's toxic environment. In one of his first meetings as supervisor, Stegmaier said he passed a note to Chairman Charles DeHaven Jr. indicating that he was ready to vote on a pending matter. He said he found it “suspicious” that his note became the subject of a Freedom of Information Act request by Graber.
The Winchester Star

Accomack County School Board member Janet Martin-Turner was censured by her fellow school board members Tuesday night for contacting the Virginia Department of Education, without permission, to discuss changing the school division’s application for American Rescue Plan funding. Virginia Code states, “No individual school board member has any authority or duties except as may be assigned to them by the school board,” Chair Paul Bull read from the resolution. The school board’s code of ethics states, “all powers and authority rest in the school board as a unit … as a board member, I have no official authority unless, by official action, the board delegates me to execute a specific action,” he read.
Eastern Shore Post

In response to a rising national trend of disruptive, sometimes violent, local school board meetings, the school board in Loudoun County has changed their guidelines on who is allowed to participate. The school system said in a press release that starting at the next board meeting on Sept. 28, those wishing to offer public comment at school board meetings must meet the following criteria: They must be residents of Loudoun County (including its incorporated towns); Owners of businesses located in whole or part in Loudoun County; LCPS students; Parents and guardians of LCPS students that live outside of Loudoun County; or LCPS employees. In their written statement, the board emphasized the change was to protect the interests of their own residents.

A child who hasn't been seen since February is now presumed dead. And as authorities are attempting to find her body, they're also trying to figure out the paper trail of childcare. Three-year-old Khaleesi Cuthriell was placed in the care of Candi Jo Royer in October 2020 after Khaleesi's mother, Amanda Arey, was put in jail. Royer supposedly handed the child over to family in February, but authorities confirmed that was not the case.  The Augusta County Sheriff's Office brought light to this situation Sept. 10 — months after the last time the Khaleesi has been seen.  Now Royer and Travis Brown are in custody and have been implicated in the case. Pennsylvania authorities arrested Royer, 41, and Brown, 29, on Sept. 12 at a Knights Inn motel in South Greensburg, Pennsylvania. Brown has been on the run since August. As of Sept. 22,Shenandoah Valley Social Services has refused to answer questions from the News Leader.
News Leader