County of­fi­cials re­main at each other’s throats

Rappahannock News - - FRONT PAGE -

To re­cap, a lo­cal court case known as Bragg 1 al­leges that the county’s Board of Su­per­vi­sors vi­o­lated Vir­ginia’s Free­dom of In­for­ma­tion Act (FOIA) on sev­eral oc­ca­sions in 2016 by not giv­ing proper pub­lic no­ti­fi­ca­tion be­fore go­ing into closed ses­sion.

Sur­round­ing the case, Jack­son District Su­per­vi­sor Ron Fra­zier on Satur­day fired off an elec­tronic mis­sive to County At­tor­ney Art Goff. On Tues­day, Goff fired back. Then Fra­zier re­turned fire. The two county of­fi­cials and their edited emails speak for them­selves:

Mr. Goff,

Just won­der­ing, can you elab­o­rate on why I was served with a sum­mons from Michael Brown from “Walker Jones” . . . hired by the Board of Su­per­vi­sors to as­sist you in the de­fense of the Board (of which I am a mem­ber) for ma­te­ri­als re­lated to the Bragg I?

For a Board mem­ber to be sub­poe­naed for ma­te­ri­als that do not ex­ist . . . shows the in­com­pe­tence of our staff. I no longer have to won­der, you and [for­mer county at­tor­ney] Mr. Luke have proven it.

This is an out­rage.

Ron­ald Fra­zier.

The county at­tor­ney’s re­sponse . . .

Mr. Fra­zier: You were served with a sub­poena duces tecum be­cause we re­quire you to an­swer it. You will also be served with process for me to take your de­po­si­tion, in due course, wherein you will an­swer my ques­tions un­der the penalty of per­jury.

I un­der­stand . . . Mr. Brown in­formed you of the dif­fer­ence be­tween be­ing a mem­ber of the BoS and be­ing an in­di­vid­ual client. I hope you un­der­stand what he told you. You are not my in­di­vid­ual client, never have been, and never will be. For ques­tions re­lat­ing to civil pro­ce­dure . . . and your sta­tus as a mem­ber of the BoS, you should con­sult your own at­tor­ney.

To be clear, I rep­re­sent [cur­rent and for­mer su­per­vi­sors] Roger Welch, John Lesin­ski, Chris Par­rish, and Mike Biniek as in­di­vid­ual clients. I do not rep­re­sent you. You chose to re­verse your cer­ti­fi­ca­tions and to ac­cede to [David] Kon­ick’s threats and were thereby re­moved as a party to Bragg I . . .

Do not send me an in­sult­ing email ever again. ALG.

And then this in re­turn from Fra­zier . . .

Mr. Goff,

As a mem­ber of the “Board” you owe me the eth­i­cal obli­ga­tion to keep me in­formed . . . and I will con­tinue to make you aware of it un­til it fi­nally sinks in that as County At­tor­ney, you must rep­re­sent the Board first, and then the in­di­vid­ual re­spon­dents. It is un­for­tu­nate you and Mr. Luke both have trou­ble with this . . .

Your’s and Pe­ter Luke’s le­gal ar­gu­ment was shred­ded by 6 of the 7 Supreme Court jus­tices. The opin­ion was 7-0. Per­haps you are some­how un­der the spell of Mr. Luke?

I am not blind, deaf or dumb, and as a mem­ber of the Board, I am one of your em­ploy­ers in your role of County At­tor­ney and I take waste­ful spend­ing very se­ri­ous. I did not “ac­cede” to Mr. Kon­ick’s threats . . . Some­times peo­ple do the right thing, be­cause it is the right thing to do.

Do not ever send me an­other in­sub­or­di­nate com­mu­ni­ca­tion again.


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