Spotsylvania News

Jeff Branscome writes about Spotsylvania County.

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Board of Supervisors may stick with Doug Barnes

Usually after a county administrator leaves, the Board of Supervisors immediately starts a search for a new one. Not in the case of the Spotsylvania County Board of Supervisors. They appear to be sticking with Doug Barnes for awhile.

Barnes has been with the county for like 100 years but he has aged well and looks about 45. OK, just kidding. I think he’s worked for the county since the 1970s. I had someone run his history for me and we came up with a little timeline of his career in the county, but I lost the darn email. I am not going to ask them to research it again. Maybe Tuesday he can hand me his resume. I’ll need it sooner or later anyway. 

There is nothing on the Dec. 9 agenda that involves beginning a search for a county administrator, and the supervisors plan to appoint Barnes to all of the committees on which former county administrator Randy Wheeler served. I just thought I’d mention that little tidbit.

So what’s to come this new year? There are a few things I think we’ll see in 2009.

  • First of all, there is the Summit Crossing project from Tricord. A vote is expected in the spring.

  • VRE. Supervisors will probably vote in January on whether to join the commuter rail service and I will have a story in tomorrow’s paper about VRE, and I am also working on another story that will run later this month probably. 
  • Reorganizing the local government. Supervisor Hap Connors has been harping on this for some time, but it didn’t gain much steam when Randy Wheeler was county administrator. Barnes, however, is apparently digging deep and there might be some options the Board of Supervisors can review that could make a smaller, more efficient local government by combining some departments. For example, does there really need to be planning, community development, economic development, environmental engineering, zoning, building and code enforcement departments? This will be an interesting topic because some jobs may be moved around, downgraded, changed, and there could even be additional layoffs depending on how bad the economy continues to get.






  • glasshouse

    Barnes is reasonable and he listens. Only know fault is that he once backed staff when they were clearly wrong. If I had a vote, I would give him my confidence and support. I would not want a yes man, but I would want him to present both sides of an issue to the BOS. Doug Barnes is good for Spotsylvania County. Not sure why he might want the job and the pressures/stress that goes with it.