House Bill 1582 reflects an incomplete understanding of weapons qualification practices within our military and is an unwarranted expansion in the number of people allowed to carry handguns in the Commonwealth. It would do nothing to protect the safety of our citizens.
It would allow any person 18 years of age or older and on active military duty or honorably discharged from the United States Armed Forces or the Virginia National Guard who has completed basic training to apply for a concealed handgun permit.
Contrary to the assumption of House Bill 1582, weapons familiarization training as a component of an individual’s military basic training does not qualify that
Aaron Lyles, a senior at William Byrd High School will be 18 years old in March 2010. He will vote for the first time in May.
Sunday afternoon before a group of 35 people Lyles declared himself a candidate for Vinton Town Council. Introduction was made by Andrew Thacker Lyles World History II teacher in his sophomore year.
After Lyles made his announcement John Beach Lyles proud government teacher was impressed by his student saying, “It’s not very often you have a student that looks forward to coming to government class.”
Beach explained how Lyles has been involved in the political process since the ninth grade. “He’s always been interested in politics … he comes to class excited and enthusiastic asking – are we going to talk about this or that,” said Beach. Before class Aaron would critique the campaign of Democratic candidate for Governor Creigh Deeds and what he “should” be doing to win.
Aaron’s adoptive grandmother, Betsy McDermott was proud of her grandson, as were all the supporters out at the Charles R. Hill Senior Center next to the Vinton War Memorial. Supporters included former Democratic congressional candidate Sam Rasoul, former candidate for Delegate Martin Jeffrey and his campaign manager Mark Powell.
Lyles campaign manager is Josh Ball and his communications director is David O’Neal. O’Neal was communication director for Troy Bird Republican candidate for the 11th House of Delegate seat.
In candidate Lyles announcement he said the current town Council is not reaching out to the people or businesses. Vinton does not get its fair share from the County and he would work to address the disparity.
“We need a council member who will work to utilize our elected officials to the fullest potential … I feel it was a misappropriation of funds,” declared Lyles. He was referring to the $50 million Green Ridge Recreation Center that few Vinton residents will use due to its north county location. Lyles said a better use of $50 million would be to divide it out to the municipalities. Vinton’s share being $10 million would go a long way in saving the Vinton pool as well as aide in storm water management costs.
Lyles will soon circulate a petition for the necessary 125 signatures of registered voters. Then with his 18th birthday he can be placed on the ballot for the May election.
Communications Director David O’Neal with Aaron Lyles
Sam Rasoul and Mark Powell
Martin Jeffrey talks to Lyles Grandmother, Betsy McDermott
William Byrd HS teachers, John Beach and Andrew Thacker