To the Editor:
Your coverage of the debate remarks made by candidates running for the 31st District Senate seat and the 34th District House of Delegates seat at the forum held at the McLean Community Center on Oct. 18 was well-written and informative for those unable to attend. Your biographies of, and interviews with, each candidate gave readers a better understanding of the background and views of each candidate. However, in keeping with Tip O’Neill’s adage that “all politics is local” the Connection would have done well to extend coverage to the debate between candidates Jennifer Chronis and John Foust running for the Board of Supervisors seat for the Dranesville District.
Regarding the issue of NOVA Firearms locating within close proximity to the Franklin Sherman Elementary School, Ms. Chronis acknowledged that she fully understood – and agreed with - the concerns of McLean parents' regarding the location of the firearms store and clearly stated that her first priority was ensuring the safety of our children. She went on to correctly state that under current Virginia law NOVA Firearms is not prohibited for renting space directly adjacent to the school; she stated further, that the reasonable thing to do, pending the General Assembly changing Virginia law, is to work together with both sides to find a solution that addressed the parents' concerns. During the debate it was also noted that the Board of Supervisors could opt to tighten the Fairfax County Zoning Ordinance to prohibit such businesses from locating close to our schools; to date, incumbent John Foust has not proposed a motion to that effect.
In her remarks Ms. Chronis emphasized the need for parents and local leaders to reach practical and effective solutions as opposed to politicians continuing to inflame neighbors regarding any issue for political gain. Her concern was somewhat prophetic given the recent political mailer from the Foust campaign which falsely alleges that Ms. Chronis supports having a gun store just 75 feet away from Franklin Sherman Elementary School. At the bottom reads “Source: October 19th debate comments.” Without regard to the fact that the debate was held on the 18th, Ms. Chronis spoke on various gun issues for more than two minutes – yet no direct quote is attributed to her to support the false claims made by the Foust campaign.
John Foust and I have known each other for more than 25 years. We worked together as Scout Masters of Pack 1134 for four years; over a period of eight years my wife, Lynn, was the Den Leader for each of his two sons. John graciously offered our son Gregory an internship in his office in the summer of 2010. The false accusations against Jennifer Chronis made by the Foust campaign staff do not reflect the integrity of the man we have known over those many years.