I hope you are enjoying your summer. Though the House of Delegates is not in session, I’ve been busy traveling throughout the 20th District participating in numerous parade, lawn parties, and other area events. I’ve had the pleasure of seeing many of you out, and I’m hopeful that I will continue to see some of you out and about at the various celebrations throughout the district.
I want to take a few minutes to give you an update on what’s going on in the Commonwealth and here in the 20th District.
Churchville Volunteer Fire Department’s Annual Carnival
This weekend the Churchville Volunteer Fire Department is hosting their annual carnival. It started on Wednesday,July 25 and will go through tomorrow, Saturday July 28, andwill take place at the Churchville Elementary School. Tomorrow nightI will participate in the Churchville Fireman’s Parade at 5:00 pm. Ihope to see you out at the parade and carnival!
Augusta County Fair
The Augusta County Fair is just around the corner. The fair will kick off on Tuesday, August 7 and go through Saturday,August 11. The gates will open at 6:00 pm on Tuesday through Friday,and at 1:00 pm on Saturday.
For more information about the Augusta County Fair,visit their website at http://www.augustacountyfairva.com.
The Augusta County and Staunton City Republican Committees will be working together to sponsor a booth for our Republican candidates. Please stop by to say hello, and pick up your yard signs, bumper stickers, and other literature.
If you’re interested in volunteering for the booth please let me know, and I would be happy to pass it on to the appropriate person.
Highland County Fair
The Highland County Fair will kick off on Saturday,August 25, and will be in full swing from Wednesday, August 29 –Saturday, September 1. I will be over on Wednesday night to participate in the parade, and I hope to see you there.
For more information on the Highland County Fair, or for a detailed fair schedule, visit their website at www.highlandcountyfairva.com.
Make a Difference in 2012!
The 2012 Election is only 101 days away! This is the most important election of our lifetime, and the visions for leading America could not be more different. I strongly support Mitt Romney for President, George Allen for United States Senate, and Bob Goodlatte and Robert Hurt for United States House of Representatives.
Virginia is a battleground state, and crucial to victory for Mitt Romney. The polls have all races extremely close,and every vote will make a difference.
If you want to makea difference during this crucial election, I would encourage you to volunteer at our local Victory Headquarters. The headquarters in Harrisonburg is already open and they need volunteers to make phone calls and knock on doors for our Republican candidates.
The headquarters is located at 182 Neff Avenue, Suite S13 in Harrisonburg. They are open from 9:00 am - 9:00 pm, Monday - Friday and 9:00 am - 5:00 pm on Saturdays. If you'd like to volunteer please contact Joe Russo. The phone number for the headquarters is 540-221-1503, or you can contact them by email at HarrisonburgHQ@rpv.org.
There will be a headquarters opening in Staunton very soon. Please stay tuned for more details.
Save the Date - Barbecue and Bluegrass with Delegate Bell
Please mark your calendars for the evening of October 5. We willbe hosting our annual Barbecue and Bluegrass event at Shenandoah Harley Davidson in Staunton. We will be sending more details as the date gets closer.
Back to School Sales Tax Holiday
Each year many families across the Commonwealth struggle to afford school supplies for their children.
To make this time of year a bit more bearable,Virginia is once again holding a Back to School Sales Tax Holiday. The Holiday will start Friday, August 3 and go for three full days through Sunday, August 5.
This is one small way that we can try to makeschool supplies more affordable. I encourage each of you to take advantage of this opportunity.
You can save on all school supplies (priced at $20 or less per item) and clothing and footwear (priced at $100 or less per article of clothing or pair of footwear) for three full days. There is no limit on the number of items that may be purchasedtax-free. Additionally, some retailers will voluntarily absorb the sales tax on other items in their stores for these three days.
All residents, not just those headed back toschool, qualify for the tax exemption. You can find a complete list of exempt items, as well as guidelines for the sales tax holiday and aset of frequently asked questions, online at http://www.tax.virginia.gov/salestaxholiday
Women’s Monument on Capitol Square
The Virginia Women’s Monument Commission is currently seeking proposals for a site specific sculpted design to beerected on the grounds of capitol square. Recently, there have been a number of conversations held across the Commonwealth regarding the possibility of a permanent tribute to Virginia women on Capitol Square. The Commission is planning for a monument to be erected that will stand as a constant reminder of the key role that women have played in the History of the Commonwealth. They hope the monument will inspire the women of today, while recognizing the struggles and accomplishments of the women of our past.
For more information on the monument, or forinformation on how to submit proposals or provide feedback, please see Governor McDonnell’s Press Release.
Governor McDonnell Signs Legislation to Strengthen Penalties for Repeat Drug Dealers
This week, Governor McDonnell signed legislation from the 2012 Session that would strengthen penalties for repeat drug dealers. Among the legislation were measures to increase the mandatory minimum sentences for repeat drug dealers, criminalize the illegal distribution of new synthetic cannabinoids and hallucinogenic bath salts, strengthen procedures to combat the use of methamphetamine and establish a Substance Abuse Recovery Grant Program.
One of the fundamental obligations of the government is to provide safety for its citizens. Each year,thousands of Virginians suffer from the effects of drugs and addiction, yet dealers continue to provide these illegal products. The consequences of this extends beyond the individual, and impacts families and our community as a whole. Therefore I’m pleased that Governor McDonnell signed this legislation and showed Virginia’s commitment to decreasing the spread of illegal drugs here in the Commonwealth.
For more information about this, please see the Governor’s Press Release.
Though there’s no election for the House of Delegates this year, the need for money is still very real. We must spread our positive message of small government, fiscal responsibility, and valley values across Virginia.
I would like to continue this work as your Delegate and promote this message, but I cannot do this without your help. I would sincerely appreciate your donation of $25, $50, $100, or whatever you can afford. You can donate online here or you can send a check to Dickie Bell for Delegate Post Office Box 239, Staunton, Virginia 24402.
As always, thank you for your generosity.
Please do not hesitate to contact my office if wecan be of any assistance to you. You can reach us by phone at 540-448-3999, or by email at DelDBell@house.virginia.gov.
Thank you for allowing me to serve as your delegate.