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John Ogle

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John Ogle began his career in broadcast journalism while still in high school. In nearly 50 years on the radio he has worked as a news anchor for the ABC, NBC, and Mutual networks and as News Director of radio stations in Richmond, Miami, Washington, and New York City. After ten years as News Director of WCXR, Alexandria, John returned to Richmond in 1993 and organized The Richmond Times Dispatch Broadcast News Service. In its 12 year history, the network’s programming was heard on 20 radio stations across Virginia. John retired from the Times Dispatch at the end of 2004 but is still heard daily as a freelance Correspondent on WCVE Public Radio and on the ABC Radio Network.

Articles by John Ogle

DOE Notifies School Districts About Bus Safety Device

The Virginia Department of Education has warned all 132 school divisions in the commonwealth about the need to install a device to prevent the parking brake on school buses to accidentally disengage.

The device is called a Brake Interlock and it is required on all school buses in Virginia with automatic transmissions purchased after March 24, 2011.

Kerry Miller, DOE’s Associate Director for Pupil Transportation, said, “What that feature does is it forces the driver to depress the brake pedal on the floor before the parking brake valve can be released.”

DC2RVA High Speed Rail Meeting Tonight in Hanover

The Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation organized a meeting for tonight (5/23) at the Hanover County Administration Building to talk about the route of the DC2RVA high speed rail project.

Ashland Mayor Jim Foley is on the committee. He said, “This is our opportunity for the community to have input. We are listening to each other and we appreciate each other’s positions, you know, I have friends out in the west of the county. I can see where the tracks are gonna go and that could be very damaging.”

Petersburg Public Works Employees Could Reapply

Petersburg City Council will vote on a proposed 2018 fiscal year budget on June 6th. If the budget passes some 20 city workers could lose their jobs.

The budget, proposed by the Robert Bobb Group, calls for restructuring the present Department of Public Works. If the budget passes the city will put out a Request for Proposal and a private company will take over the department. Utilities will become a separate department.

Another Solar Energy Project Proposal in Hanover County

A Seattle, Washington, firm is considering a small renewable energy project for farmland in Hanover. The county has already approved one solar farm project.

One Energy Renewables met with the county planning staff this week to explain the project and get their feedback before deciding what to do.

In February, Hanover okayed plans for a 222 acre solar farm along 360 in Mechanicsville on land owned by Henry Broaddus, who’s family has been in the area since colonial times. He is partnered with Sun Energy 1 of North Carolina.

Tie Vote Kills Mayor Election Motion in Petersburg

At present Petersburg City Council selects which of its members serve as mayor.

Council voted last night (5/16) on a motion to place the question of the at large election of the city’s Mayor on the ballot in November.

Outside city hall, spokesperson Clay Hamner explained that Councilman and former Mayor W. Howard Myers was not at the meeting. “The council voted Tuesday night, 3 for and 3 against, putting the vote for an at-large mayor on the ballot in Petersburg for the fall. That means that the motion does not move forward, it is dead,” said Hamner.

Developer Agrees to Reduce Density of Atlee Project

The developer that wants to build The Villages at Taylor Farm at the intersection of Honey Meadows and Atlee Road in Hanover has agreed to reduce the density of the plan to 125 units after hearing from people who live in the area.

The new plan includes 40 town houses and 85 single family homes, 22 fewer than the revised plan submitted by the Cool Springs Company in February.

The latest proposal would result in 2.9 units per acre, down from 3.4. Hanover Supervisor Chair Angela Kelly-Wiecek says she appreciates their willingness to listen to people’s concerns.

Henrico School Board Will Hear from Public on Redistricting

In a meeting at the New Bridge Learning Center, members of the Henrico County School Board will hear from the public tonight on three proposed redistricting options.

The school system’s Andy Jenks said there are three goals. Primarily, the issue of overcrowding at Hungary Creek Middle School.

"At the same time we’re looking to create space for an academy for gifted students at Wilder Middle School and, if we can, we are looking for ways to reduce the concentrations of poverty in certain areas of the county."

Petersburg Names Interim Police Chief

Deputy Chief Brian Braswell will take over next week as interim Police Chief in Petersburg. He’ll replace Chief William Rhode who came out of retirement last year to guide the department though tough times.

Braswell has been a member of the department for more than twenty years. He said, "I think my first order of business will be to just stabilize the police department and let everybody know we’re gonna be okay, we’re going to move forward and everything’s going to be fine."

He said that, in spite of some setbacks, the Robert Bobb Group has instilled confidence.

Hanover School Board Votes Yes on 10 Point Grading Scale

Grading for Hanover County middle and high school students will switch from a 7 point scale to a 10 point scale in the fall. The system is similar to SAT grading.

The Hanover County School Board voted on the change at its regular meeting (5/9).

The debate on grading has been going on for the past six months. A study committee was formed in October and the board had a work session in March.

Before the vote, four speakers supported the change. No one spoke against it.