For sale: A buttload of houses [October 15]

For sale: A buttload of houses [October 15]

Today sees the release of the third-quarter market report from the Charlottesville Area Association of Realtors (CAAR), which is not a happy document if you’re trying to unload a three-bedroom with updated kitchen. There are 3,471 houses on the local market right now and a quarter of those have been on the market for more than 200 days. According to CAAR, the current inventory is "possibly a record" and triples the inventory recorded three years ago during the recent local housing boom. Buyers, suggests CAAR, should see these numbers as a golden opportunity; sellers should pray for rain.

[October 14]

GOP Senate race: Gilmore 1, Davis 0
Convention decision favors former guv

The state Republican skirmish over who will face Democratic former governor Mark Warner for John Warner’s open U.S. Senate seat unofficially kicked off this weekend. GOP leaders have opted to hold a convention rather than a primary to choose their contender, reports today’s Washington Post. A convention limits the decision to about 10,000 party activists, who tend to be more right wing. That’s good news for conservative former governor Jim Gilmore. It’s bad news for Tom Davis, the NoVa congressman who would likely have benefited from a primary’s broader appeal. Republicans are hoping a convention will limit nasty intra-party politicking. "We cannot air out dirty laundry," Bruce Meyer, chair of the 2nd District congressional committee, told the Post. "We have to keep it in-house."

[October 13]

Radio free Charlottesville
Yet another station turns up on the local dial

Monticello Media, the local concern that bought six area radio stations from Clear Channel, greeted listeners this morning with Tom, a new station on 107.5 FM, that, according to the news release is "anything but traditional.  Tom may play a U2 song followed by the Bee Gees then Matchbox 20, Lou Rawls, Def Leppard, Madonna, Nickleback then Earth, Wind and Fire." The station seems aimed directly at the Corner, 106.1. That eclectic station was developed by Saga Communications, which, until recently, was the employer of Monticello Media’s new General Manager, Dennis Mockler. 

[October 12]

Shoppers world deal still sweet
REIT that also owns Barracks Road enjoys tax break

Federal Realty heart Shoppers World, the purchase of which partly enabled a tax break for the REIT, and which is described by its CIO  as having "a higher initial return, a better growth profile and opportunities for redevelopment and remerchandising."

Buy and sell, buy and sell: That’s what happens at shopping centers and that’s what happens with shopping center owners, too. Federal Realty Investment Trust, the $5.15 billion company that owns Barracks Road and, as of May, Shoppers World (home to Whole Foods and Les Fabriques) announced the sale of two other retail buildings in tony Forest Hills, New York, putting a total of $15.3 million tax free on its books. The tax-free part is where the Charlottesville connection continues; thanks to a corporate tax trick called a reverse 1031 exchange, Federal was able to avoid paying taxes on the New York sale because it’s been less than six months since they bought the Charlottesville strip mall. 

[October 11]

Go Long
Charlottesville’s Kyle Long is a top prospect

Kyle Long (right) is reportedly off to Florida State to play baseball, but a recruiting report on today lists him as one of the top five ‘08 Virginia football prospects.

Insider/Football Recruiting, a feature on ESPN’s website, is reporting today that Virginia is a hot spot this year when it comes to high school football recruiting. Focus in further, and Charlottesville’s Kyle Long is highlighted as one of the top five ‘08 Virginia prospects. Kyle, the brother of UVA standout Chris Long, and the son of NFL legend Howie Long, is a senior at St. Anne’s-Belfield School, and plays offensive tackle, “one of the toughest positions in which to excel,” according to “Insider.” But reportedly, baseball is his real love. Weaklings of the world, listen up:, a recruiting database, has Long listed as 6′ 7", 280 pounds, and says he can bench press a maximum of 310 pounds.

[October 10]

$3 billion worth of pressure
It’s 5pm, have you raised a million bucks today?

It turns out that raising $3 billion comes with a little pressure, like hitting a goal of a little over a million bucks…every day. Today’s Washington Post pulls back the curtain on UVA’s $3 billion capital campaign, talking to Robert Sweeney, the senior vice president for development and public affairs, among others. Post writer Susan Kinzie delves into the inner workings of fundraising, the university-wide database of donors and potential donors, the secrets of the pitch and the amount of personal background research UVA does on each potential giver. Kinzie also points out that UVA’s campaign might just be the model of the future for other public universities, while highlighting the flap that erupted last spring when Sweeney got one of the coveted Lawn houses.

Breaking the mold: Robert Sweeney tactics for leading UVA’s $3B campaign are explored.

[October 9]

Another cartoon draws protests

A University of Kentucky cartoon causes controversy

A Cav Daily cartoonist was fired over this cartoon.

Only weeks after the Cavalier Daily’s cartoon scandal,  another student paper has published a race-based comic that sparked protests on campus. As reported today in the Collegiate Times, the University of Kentucky’s Kentucky Kernel ran a cartoon on Friday that depicted fraternity members bidding on a slave. The same day, students held a three-hour protest that resulted in an apology from the paper’s editor-in-chief. The actual cartoonist explained that he was trying to offer his opinion of the racial disparity in the university’s Greek system. Whether anyone will be fired—as in the case of the Cav Daily’s cartoonist—is yet to be determined.