Category: Harrisonburg Issues
As solar panels keep popping up, “affordable” and “renewable” emerge as potentially conflicting priorities for electric grid
For the moment, HEC’s guiding mission is to provide “affordable and reliable” electricity to the citizens of Harrisonburg – and using price as a metric, it has been wildly successful. “Right now, for last year and this current year, we have the lowest residential rate in the state of Virginia, and have always been in the top two or three for as long as I can remember,” said Brian O’Dell, HEC’s General Manager. Right now, one kilowatt-hour of electricity costs about 10.5 cents in Harrisonburg.
But as behind-the-meter solar generation in Harrisonburg continues to rise, “affordable” and “renewable” may become conflicting priorities because of how HEC – and most other utilities – structure their rates.
Two years’ work by four committees and many meetings later, Harrisonburg very nearly has a new comprehensive plan. It emphasizes mixed-use zoning––areas that combine residential and other uses, allowing people to live, work, shop and play in the same neighborhood––and was the subject of a public hearing before council on Tuesday night.
Emotions and experiences of war remain fresh for Tom Showalter, one of the U.S. Army’s remaining survivors of WWII
Farm life prepared Rockingham County native Tom Showalter for the strength required for enduring World War II, but not for the terror he would face — when landing on Utah Beach in one of the subsequent waves after D-Day, then facing German soldiers or when a shell exploded near him while on guard duty sending shrapnel through his leg.
After running an errand late one morning in August, Brenda Diaz-Castro was biking back downtown along South Main Street. Just after she crossed Port Republic Road heading north toward JMU, a car drifted into the bike lane she was in and sideswiped her.
Carlos Ramos unfolded the green piece of paper he’d pulled from his wallet and waved it before the small crowd that had gathered at Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church. It was his property tax bill that just came from the city. He’s paid it for years, and on Monday, held it up as a sort of Harrisonburg membership card.
Community support and donations over next month will determine to what degree—or even if—Skyline Literacy can continue providing reading and citizenship courses for community members next year, board members said Monday.
The army of rentable scooters that began ambling down Harrisonburg’s streets this month brought another element of the gig economy to the Valley, including all the questions that go along with a new service: How are they regulated? What are the safety implications? And is this going to alter daily life?