Saturday, April 24, 2010

200 Years Ago

During James Madison's first presidential term, the United States conducted its third census in 1810. The population totaled 7.2 million, including 1.4 million African Americans, of whom 1.2 million were enslaved.

The population west of the Appalachian Mountains was only 1 million. Can't wait to find out how things have changed in 200 years when the 2010 Census results are published.

From James Madison University's Madison magazine.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Urgent message regarding WHRO state funding

The Virginia General Assembly will vote on the governor’s amendments during the scheduled re-convene session on Wednesday, April 21.

WHRO needs your help. The need is critical, and it’s urgent. I’m referring to Governor Bob McDonnell’s proposed budget amendments to phase out all state funding for public television and radio over the next four years, beginning July 1, 2010.

Under these amendments, over the coming two-year budget cycle, Virginia’s public broadcasters will lose over $2.2 million – funding that provides on-air and on-line instructional programming, as requested and used by teachers in the classroom all over the Commonwealth. All funding would be terminated in the subsequent two years.

The governor’s amendments would also implement a four-year phase-out of all state funding to support public broadcasting’s programming in the arts, cultural matters and public affairs. Statewide, the reduced funding in this category totals $592,835 beginning in 2011, with total elimination scheduled over the following two years.

This is NOT a question of saving Big Bird. The on-air general viewing programs are funded by our members/donors. This is a question of maintaining the educational services that public broadcasting stations provide to the schools, educators and students of Hampton Roads. The funds allocated to public broadcasters like WHRO in Virginia budget's are used to provide direct support to public education in Virginia...NOT to fund general viewing programs, as too many assume.

It is critically important that the Hampton Roads legislators hear from their constituents, and to that end, we’re asking you to email or call your legislators within the next 48 hours, urging them to restore funding to public broadcasting to the level recommended by the Conference Committee and approved by the House and Senate...and continue to give the public school teachers in Virginia valuable tools for the classroom.

The Virginia General Assembly will vote on the governor’s amendments during the scheduled re-convene session on Wednesday, April 21. I can’t stress more emphatically the influence your voices have on the General Assembly. Please let them hear from you within the next 48 hours, and please share this message with your friends who value what we provide to education in Hampton Roads.

Please call and email your representative of the Hampton Roads delegation. If you’re not sure who that is, you can visit the “who’s my legislator” page of the Virginia General Assembly website.

Thursday, April 08, 2010

1.8 Billion and growing

The world-wide economic crisis, or Great Recession, had no effect on Internet growth. On the contrary, we see growth in all parts of the world during year 2009.

The following table shows the estimated population for each geographic region, the number of Internet users, and the penetration rate (this term means the percentage of the population that uses the Internet) in each region.

From this table, the year 2009 ends with 1,802,330,108 Internet users. This represents a 26.6% penetration rate.

Source: estimates for December 31, 2009. Notes: a) Population data comes from the US Census Bureau; b) Internet estimates come from ITU, Nielsen Online, GfK, official telecommunications regulating agencies and other trustworthy sources; c) Mexico is included in Central America and Turkey is included in Europe, according to the United Nations grouping; d) P.R. means the Penetration Rate, in percentage.

Copyright © 2010, Miniwatts Marketing Group.

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Vision Hampton Roads is ready; Governor McDonnell Speaks at Regional Day

Make valuable connections at Regional Day on Thursday, May 6 from 8:00-10:30a.m. at the Chesapeake Conference Center in Chesapeake, Virginia.

This inaugural event brings business and civic leaders, government and citizens together to learn more about the region, build relationships, share ideas and celebrate “living regionally” and the comprehensive “Vision” for our region’s economic future. Regional Day is a time to share information, provoke ideas and collaborate among the region’s citizens, elected officials, municipal and public agency representatives and anyone else who has an interest in the future of Hampton Roads and wants to be involved in shaping that future.

Festivities will include a Regional Crier taking a roll-call vote from each local government’s chief elected official (or their designee) to support the “Declaration of Interdependence,” a regional compact for our municipalities addressing such issues as legislative unity, education, public safety, transportation, and public communication. Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell will deliver the keynote address. Breakfast will be served. This event is open to the public.

To register as an individual ($25) or sponsor a table ($500), visit: and click on “Register for Regional Day” or call the Hampton Roads Chamber’s Reservation Hotline at (757) 664-2558, dial extension 5.

This event is brought to you by the Hampton Roads Partnership in collaboration with:
• Franklin/Southampton Area County Chamber of Commerce
• Future of Hampton Roads
• Greater Williamsburg Chamber and Tourism Alliance
• Hampton Roads Center for Civic Engagement
• Hampton Roads Chamber of Commerce
• Hampton Roads Economic Development Alliance
• Hampton Roads Planning District Commission/ Transportation Planning Organization
• Isle of Wight/Smithfield/Windsor Chamber of Commerce
• Virginia Peninsula Chamber of Commerce
• WHRO’s Center for Regional Citizenship

Thank you to our Regional Champions: CSX Transportation and Norfolk Southern Corporation.

What is Vision Hampton Roads? Against a backdrop of challenging economic conditions, community leaders and organizations throughout the Hampton Roads region collaborated to create Vision Hampton Roads, a five-year plan, developed with input from the public, for expanding and diversifying the local economy and positioning Hampton Roads as a strong, competitive and internationally recognized presence and global thought leader. It is the goal of Vision Hampton Roads that Hampton Roads will be recognized as a region fueled by innovation, intellectual and human capital, viable infrastructure and a strong sense of place. Achieving this vision will call for careful and continuous planning, diligent governance, dynamic regional cooperation and engaged citizens. Visit to see the final document and implementation plan.

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Published in the Virginia Maritimer

My blog post covering the Virginia Dept. of Rail and Public Transit's Public Hearing on high-speed rail in January was picked up by the Port of Virginia and published in their March-April 2010 issue of Virginia Maritimer. Click on the magazine cover graphic above to download the PDF (36 pages, 2.7MB).

Visit the blog to see the original post on