Friday, May 29, 2009

Will Queen Darlene Bite the Dust Monday?

queen-darleneBrewing for much too long– Roanoke City may not have Queen Darlene to kick around anymore. Roanoke City Manager, Darlene Burcham, as reported by The Roanoke Times may be on the ropes for certain this time. Roanoke citizens have been way too patient. During Burcham’s tenure debt per capita has increased four-fold. The purchase of Countryside Golf Course for “upscale” development that fizzled and according to developers was not a wise decision even in good times. (See Roanoker Magazine article.) Then there was the “closed for Fall cleaning” fiasco with the city Market building. Rodents roamed the vendor stalls coming in through holes in the wall; there was no pest control for 6 months.

Let’s not forget raising the ire of Council member Court Rosen when he was denied a copy of Downtown Roanoke Inc. consortium’s Market building proposal.

The straw may have been the Roanoker’s Queen Darlene article that flew off store shelves.

What disturbs me is the three “anonymous” Council members going on record with a personnel matter. Council has been so adamant and tight-lipped on closed door sessions on personnel matters refusing to comment. Why on such a high profile personnel matter did the three members of Council open up to Mason Adams is disconcerting?

Yes, I know who the three are but let the guessing begin. Moreover the outcome is more important than their identity.

Posted By Valerie Garner

Categories: Commentary, Roanoke City Politics


Comments (7)


May 29th, 2009 at 12:34 PM    

I think this website’s creepy obsession with Darlene Burcham is weird. And the fact that the blogger always professes to be in-the-know when many believe she’s just a bitter ex city employee with an ax to bear.
And if someone is anonymous, they are by definition not on the record. Only the folks who want to see a blood bath are bothered by this… and they’re only because the council members didn’t give their names, not because they commented.


May 29th, 2009 at 12:49 PM    

I have never worked for the city.


May 29th, 2009 at 12:58 PM    

Good question though … can you be anonymously on the record? If you’re off the record then that is telling the reporter “we’re just chatting” and I don’t expect for it to appear in print.

I say Mr. or Ms. anon were ON the record otherwise it would not be reported.

Gerry L.

May 31st, 2009 at 12:50 AM    

Chris, the blogger is Valerie Garner. She is not a former city employee as she indicated under the RFP post.

She ran for city council in 2008 and finished in fifth place of six candidates. The sixth candidate was a wonderful man named Dale Edmonston who is an healthcare activist.

Garner is also the save countryside lady who leads the small contingency that believes it is the city of roanoke’s responsibility to maintain their property values for them.

She also acts as a photographer/propagandist for David Bowers and will likely run for council again in 2010.



May 31st, 2009 at 12:50 PM    

This is a news website. I confirm what I write. Let’s face it Bowers is everywhere and it is hard not to get him in a picture. Since the RT was unable to contact him I called the following day. Bowers expected other media to be at his office but no one showed up so I made the best of it.

Running again? Probably not but hey if someone dumps $25,000 in my lap like they did Rosen …

As far as Countryside the City made a big mistake in buying it as the Roanoker article describes and most Roanokers and Council members agree.

Gerry’s comment about Countryside is so far off base – he has not been paying attention.


Gerry L.

May 31st, 2009 at 10:23 PM    

David is everywhere but focusing on the city’s business. That’s the problem.

Bowers is a total hypocrite. He was on three news stations, radio and in the Roanoke Times talking about a personnel matter that had been discussed in a closed meeting. Its silly.

I don’t recall last campaign being a big money “dump.” I do remember 2006 when the For the City Ticket had almost 200 grand between them.

Minus little competition in 2008 elections it was tame compared the the previous one.


June 1st, 2009 at 12:16 AM    

Here is a link to Rosen in 2008 – it is actually $41K according to VPAP:


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