Fredericksburg City Beat

This blog includes news about City Hall, city schools and other 22401 news.

Pamela Gould reports on City Hall. You can reach her at 540-735-1972 or Robyn Sidersky reports on city schools. You can reach her at 540-374-5413 or

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Morning Buzz – Jan. 27, 2011

A daily digest of what’s going on in Fredericksburg, and what news from elsewhere is relevant here. Send suggestions to

Smithfield’s town council joins a few other Hampton Roads localities in purchasing iPads to cut down on the amount of paper used for council agenda packets. The Daily Press reports that the town ordered 12 iPads for $499 apiece. Fredericksburg City Council members voted last year to purchase iPads in an effort to go paperless. City Manager Beverly Cameron said staff hope to distribute the devices to the council in two months or so, but it could be a little longer, as city IT staff and management evaluate whether to wait for the iPad 2 to be released in April. Cameron said the city plans to order 14 of the devices — one for each council member, plus one for the city attorney, clerk of council, information technology and city manager’s office staff.

Fredericksburg has begun the process of trying to get out of the requirement, first set by the 1965 Voting Rights Act, that all of its voting changes be pre-cleared by the U.S. Department of Justice. Read more about this in Sunday’s paper, but the city will hold a community meeting about this on Monday at 6 p.m. at City Hall. Bedford County and city are also going through this process right now. You can read about those efforts here.

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  • Rochester

    For the life of me I can”t understand why the iPad purchases are suchBIG NEWS. So the city is moving from paper to electronic tablets. This has been happening in offices all over America every day for the past 5 years. Why dont you tell us something important like whether we need to upgrade from Cottonelle to Charmin at City Hall. Slow news day huh?

  • Adam

    The real story is why is the city spending over $13K for Ipads & internet service when Smithtown is paying a fraction of that? $3,600 per year for internet service? Why do they need internet service?

    Issue the pdf docs on thumb drives which work on all electronic devices and let the council provide their own laptops or Ipads. They all have computers. They don’t need these devices at taxpayer expense. I thought there was a budget crisis.

    I agree with Rochester. This is no story unless you’re willing to ask real questions.

  • Emily Battle

    The numbers available to date on this have been estimates, so I asked how many devices were ordered and at what cost. I learned the order has not been placed yet, and the exact model to be ordered has not been determined yet, so we cannot yet answer that question. I will get back to you on the TP issue, Rochester.

  • Rochester

    Inquiring minds want to know!

  • Adam

    Internet cost doesn’t look like an estimate in this article
    Govt should not buy these devices at all. Thumb drives cost 2 bucks. Replacement every 3 years doesn;t even cover a full term. Everyone has access to computers. If not they can buy their own.