Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Let the Mayor earn his own remarks says Lea

Subject: Article

From: “sherman” <shermanlea

Date: Fri, 13 May 2011 17:44:37 +0000

“Valerie, your Article”City Employees look to approval of Bonus” is in my opinion inaccurate , I was the first to mention Bonus/ stipend in our Monday Briefings, and go and review the tape of our Monday Budget approval meeting 5/6. And listen to my comments. I know you are friends with the Mayor but let him earn his “remarks”

I don’t mind criticism of my articles nor do I mind being corrected. But this email via my publisher at The Roanoke Star-Sentinel tells something about the sender. The accusation that I am “friends with the Mayor.”

We were all “friends” at one time including Councilman Sherman Lea until he reversed his support of the Countryside golf course at a closed meeting in February 2010. My source said Lea caved first saying “close the golf course.” That was former city manager Darlene Burcham’s last hurrah. Lea took all council members’ support with him except Mayor Bowers according to the late night caller.  [The caller was not Mayor Bowers.]

Lea had called me after a closed door session in 2009 bragging on getting 4 votes to target funds to make repairs for the golf course. He was so proud but he had another motive. His pastor Bishop Shadrack Brown of Garden of Prayer No. 7 lives on the golf course. Lea is an elder or associate pastor there. That is why he insists on being called “Elder Lea” and not Councilman Lea. 

We all know Lea wants to be Mayor but this is not the way to do it.

At one time he was considering challenging Delegate Onzlee Ware. At the time his job with the state prevented a run against Ware. When Lea and Councilman Brian Wishniff were a twosome he wanted to oust Ware from the Democratic party for supporting the Independent ticket of Trinkle, Mason and Dowe.

Friends with Bowers or Lea? Can anyone ever really be friends with politicians? They all want to get elected. The honest politicians don’t get very far. I am friends with Bowers’ mother Mary.

One thing for certain Lea blows with the political wind and heaven help us if he becomes Mayor. You may not like where Bowers stands on an issue (he is often the lone “no” vote). He has been a visible articulate representative for Roanoke City.

On another note according to a Democratic city committee member both Court Rosen and Anita Price are running for reelection.


May 9 article: Roanoke City employees have not received a raise since 2008 – not even to combat cost-of-living increases.

At city council’s meeting Monday to adopt the fiscal year 2012 budget a stipend for city employees was announced by Mayor David Bowers.

The recommendation will be for a $1000 stipend to be received by all employees on June 22, 2011. Council is expected to approve the stipend at their June meeting

The city’s work force has been reduced by 10% explained Director of Finance Ann Shawver. She was confident that “we have council support to do that … it will be a nice ‘thank you’ to all the employees for their hard work.”

Mayor David Bowers reiterated the sentiment that all employees were doing more with less and are well deserving of the one-time stipend. Bowers hoped the economy would allow raises for city employees in the next fiscal year.

The stipend if approved by council will be evenly distributed to all employees regardless of their pay grade. The requirement is that they be employed for a full year and on board by June 1, 2010.

Council members will not receive the stipend nor will council appointed officers, constitutional officers, elected officers and the two assistant city managers.

“Whether someone is making $60,000 or $30,000 they will get the $1000,” said Shawver.

Posted By Valerie Garner

Categories: Commentary, Election 2012, Elections, Politics, Roanoke City Politics

Tags: , , , ,

Comments (3)


May 24th, 2011 at 5:42 PM    

oh how dumb can someone be. a politician who would send an email like that. that’s downright sad.

good for you for posting it girl!

Dawn Lamb

May 24th, 2011 at 10:23 PM    

Lea’s complaint sounds childish. He could follow his own advice and “earn his remarks”. My vote will again be for Mayor Bowers, who is a wonderful ambassador for Roanoke.


May 25th, 2011 at 10:18 AM    

And the battle begins!! Sounds like it’s going to get ugly. Has Bowers even declared that he’s going to run for re-election? Did Sherman mean to say let the mayor earn his “marks” as opposed to his “remarks”? Regardless, the comment about you being friends with the mayor was a low blow. Also, there is a difference between being “friendly” with someone and being a “friend”.

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