It's municipal election day in Virginia.
And we're all over it on NEWS 7.
We've also got a ruling in favor of Virginia Tech in that high- profile
Tonight in sports, Lance finishes back in the pack during today's stage of
the Tour Dupont but still maintains his overall lead.
We'll check the finish and the start in Wytheville.
Plus, Phil Jackson is finally named the NBA's coach of the year.
Big changes ahead after a foggy, rainy night. Temperature will be up around
20 degrees tomorrow.
An abundance of bad weather and a lack of interest have conspired to keep
voters away from the polls today in Roanoke.
Election officials expect only about one in three of the city's registered
voters to cast ballots in today's council elections.
Double Boxes=Keith and Joe/Microwave
Joe Dashiell reports tonight from the precinct at Wasena Elementary School.
Keith, by three o'clock just 18 percent of the city's voters had made it to
That's well behind the 29 percent who had voted by mid-afternoon four years
In that election, almost half of the city's voters eventually cast their
ballots. This year we'll be lucky if the number exceeds 30 percent.
IN Q=I feel pretty excited
SUPER=01-Linda Wyatt/(D) City Council Candidate; :00
SUPER=01-Nelson Harris/(D) City Council Candidate; :32
OUT Q=how the candidates come out.
(( SOT WYATT 03:33:16
IN Q=I feel pretty excited
OUT Q=better and better about it.
Even if the bad weather kept many voters away from the polls, Democrats
remained upbeat about their prospects.
As low as the turnout appears to be, democrats say they're looking for a
consistent showing throughout the city's precincts and winning numbers when the
votes are tallied this evening.
Still, at least one democrat believes the number of seats up for grabs may
make for some interesting results.
SOT HARRIS 03:36:53
IN Q=With as many seats
OUT Q=how the candidates come out.))
With five seats to be decided, this election is a rare opportunity for both
Joe Tosses to Kimberly
Today, Kimberly McBroom caught up with the Republicans as they travelled
the final miles of this two-month campaign.
( ad lib
.....IF TRADITION HOLDS TRUE, THIS RAINY WEATHER AND LIGHT VOTER TURNOUT MAY BE
POSITIVE SIGNS FOR REPUBLICANS)
IN Q=Rainy weather
SUPER=01-Pat Green/(R) Roanoke Mayoral Candidate;:10
SUPER=01-Alvin Nash/(R) Roanoke City Council Cand.; :36
SUPER=01-David Lisk/(R) Roanoke City Council Cand.;1:05
OUT Q=field of politics
Rainy weather traditionally bodes well for the G.O.P.-- but Republican
mayoral candidate Pat Green still hopes the damp weather hasn't kept too many
((PAT GREEN/R- ROANOKE MAYORAL CANDIDATE: IN REALITY, I WOULD SINCERELY HOPE
THAT MORE VOTERS WOULD COME OUT AND VOTE. I WOULD LIKE TO WIN THIS ELECTION
KNOWING THAT A LOT OF PEOPLE DID VOTE, RATHER THAN A FEW. ))
Several Republican candidates were working the polls-- and all seemed to be
in an optimistic mood.
They say the city's black vote will carry a lot of weight in this election--
but city council candidate Alvin Nash says all precincts are equally crucial.
((ALVIN NASH/R- ROANOKE CITY COUNCIL CANDIDATE: I NEED A GOOD VOTER TURNOUT IN
THE TRADITIONALLY BLACK PRECINCTS. BUT I'M RUNNING FOR A SEAT ON ROANOKE CITY
COUNCIL AND THEREFORE, I WOULD LIKE A GOOD TURNOUT IN ALL PRECINCTS.))
And while Pat Green may be a new face on the political scene, fellow
Republican hopeful David Lisk served 10 years on council in the 60s and 70s.
He's hoping his resume will garner votes.
((DAVID LISK/R- ROANOKE CITY COUNCIL CANDIDATE: ONE WHO'S HAD PREVIOUS
EXPERIENCE IS NOT A HANDICAP AND HOPEFULLY IT CAN BE AN ADVANTAGE IN THIS
ELECTION. WE'LL FIND OUT TONIGHT WHETHER THEY CAN RECYCLE AN OLD DOG IN THE
FIELD OF POLITICS. ))
Double Boxes=Keith and Kimberly/Microwave
(question: where are the Republicans gathering after the polls close?)
Virginia Tech is right to treat rape cases differently than other violent
crimes on campus.
So said a federal judge today as he threw out Christy Brzonkala's claim
against the University.
When she was a student at Tech in 1994, Brzonkala says two football players
Brzonkala said Tech gave preferential treatment to the athletes through
administrative hearings on campus.
Judge Jackson Kiser said even if Tech GAVE preferential treatment, it was
not based on gender discrimination.
Brzonkala wanted the court to force the University to change the way it
handles sexual assault cases involving students.
But the judge said she offered no statistics to back up her discrimination
In other election news today, two years after they captured a super-
majority on city council, Lynchburg Republicans could see their numbers slip
after today's election.
Double Boxes=Keith and Steve/Microwave
Steve Smallshaw joins us live, Steve how does this year differ from the 1994
Keith, the GOP swept the '94 contest because that race was for the three at-
large seats on city council, making it easier for Republicans to run as a
group, and residents to vote for a block of candidates at the polls.
This year, however, with all four ward seats open, each candidate has had to
make a name for himself.
IN Q=Lynchburg council
SUPER=01-Jim Whitaker/Lynchburg Mayor; :13
SUPER=01-Robert Garber/Lynchburg Council Candidate; :35
SUPER=01-Carl Hutcherson/Lynchburg Council Candidate; :58
OUT Q=like to be represented.
(( Lynchburg council candidates are hoping the wet weather didn't do much to
dampen the enthusiasm of their supporters this election day.
Republican mayor Jim Whitaker was out working the polls, even though he's
IN Q=When I cast
((JIM WHITAKER/LYNCHBURG MAYOR: WHEN I CAST MY VOTE THIS MORNING AT SIX O'CLOCK
I PROBABLY ELECTED MYSELF TO OFFICE.))
OUT Q=myself to office.
So Whitaker has been helping other GOP candidates, especially incumbent
Robert Vogel who's in a tight race with Democrat Pete Warren for the Ward One
In Ward Three, Republican incumbent Jim Curling was forced to run as an
independent after his own party rejected him in favor of former chairman Robert
IN Q=It's taught me
((ROBERT GARBER/LYNCHBURG COUNCIL CANDIDATE: IT'S TAUGHT ME THAT YOU NEED TO GO
OUT THERE TO SEE THE PEOPLE TO FIND OUT WHAT THEY REALLY HAVE ON THEIR MIND.
THAT'S THE MAIN THING IT'S TAUGHT ME. I'VE HAD A LOT OF FUN, IT'S BEEN A GOOD
EXPERIENCE TO GO OUT AND TALK TO PEOPLE AND I WOULDN'T TRADE IT FOR ANYTHING.))
OUT Q=for anything.
Garber and Curling are joined by perennial outsider Jane Thurber in the Ward
And in the special at- large race, independent Carl Hutcherson hopes to edge
out Republican newcomer Stuart Hobbs.
IN Q=We want to
((CARL HUTCHERSON/LYNCHBURG COUNCIL CANDIDATE: WE WANT TO HAVE A VOICE, A MORE
INDEPENDENT VOICE, THAT WE'VE LOOKED AT THE PARTISANSHIP OF COUNCIL AND
HOPEFULLY WE CAN JUST MEET THE NEEDS OF CITIZENS IN THE WAY THEY'D LIKE TO BE
OUT Q=like to be represented.))
Double Boxes=Keith and Steve/Microwave
HARD MUSIC UNDER
Our election coverage continues on News 7 at Six---
We'll go live to Salem, where interest has been running high in the
five-way race to fill three Council seats.
wx ad lib
MUSIC UP FULL
SUPER=#C-380; Weather Roll
After the retirement of long time Mayor Jim Taliaferro, an additional
council seat became vacant in Salem.
There are now three openings on the five person Council.
Double Boxes=Keith and Ron/Microwave
Ron Jones is at Salem's City Hall. He's been checking in with the
candidates, two of whom are political newcomers.
Keith, most of the candidates we spoke with described this race as a clean
Even though most of the incumbents have have more than ten years of service
some of them campaigned the good old fashioned way-- knocking on doors and
IN Q=Incumbents Howard Packett
SUPER=01-Alex Brown/Council Incumbent; :15
SUPER=01-Howard Packett/Council Incumbent; :26
SUPER=01-Stephen Smeltzer/Candidate for Council: :45
SUPER=01-Harry Haskins/Candidate for Council; :59
OUT Q=last three months
Packett greeting some one
Incumbents Howard Packett... and Alex Brown say this race has been pretty
much-- business as usual.
After twenty plus council years between them they say campaigning is still
hard work-- but it's been easier without the mud slinging.
((ALEX BROWN/INCUMBENT: OVER ALL IT'S BEEN A NICE CLEAN RACE... OVER ALL IT'S
BEN A GOOD CLEAN CAMPAIGN.))
BUTT, BUTT, BUTT
((HOWARD PACKETT/INCUMBENT:BUT IT'S BEEN VERY FRIENDLY AND VERY INFORMATIVE. I
THINK THE PRESS... COVERAGE HAS BEEN REALLY GOOD.))
Two new kids on the campaign block-- Stephen Smeltzer and Retired Police
Chief Harry Haskins agree the campaign trail isn't exactly easy street.
((STEPHEN SMELTZER/CANDIDATE: WELL, THE REASON I'M RUNNING IS I'M VERY
INTERESTED IN SEEING SALEM PROGRESS. I LOVE SALEM IT'S BEEN MY HOME FOR ABOUT
SEVENTEEN YEARS AND I THINK I HAVE SOMETHING TO OFFER THE CITY AS FAR AS THE
LEADERSHIP INTO THE 21ST CENTURY.))
BUTT, BUTT, BUTT
((HARRY HASKINS/CANDIDATE FOR COUNCIL: THIS IS THE HARDEST WORK I'VE EVER DONE
THAT I DIDN'T GET PAID FOR. BUT I'M ENJOYING IT. WE'VE HAD A GRAND TIME THIS
LAST THREE MONTHS.))
(Ad Lib-Voter turn out)
Double Boxes=Keith and Ron/Microwave
A very low key City Council race is underway in Danville.
Double Boxes=Keith and Teresa/Microwave
Teresa Hamilton has been following the campaign and joins us from our
Keith, the candidates we spoke with characterize this election as very clean.
They say there's been very little, if any, mudslinging.
IN Q=We all
SUPER=01-Mike Smith/City Council Candidate; :00
SUPER=01-John Hamlin/City Council Candidate; :31
SUPER=01-Sherman Saunders/City Council Candidate; :57
OUT Q=better community
IN Q=We all made
((MIKE SMITH/CITY COUNCIL CANDIDATE: WE ALL MADE A PACT AS CANDIDATES THAT WE'D
WORK TOGETHER NOT TO HURT EACH OTHER BUT TO BRING A COHESIVE TEAMWORK
ATMOSPHERE TO THIS RACE AND WE HAVE. ))
OUT Q=we have.
Mike Smith describes himself as upbeat-- despite the city's low voter
So far, only about 25- percent of Danville's registered voters have
exercised their right.
Officials say voters here typically don't get too excited over local
In Danville, council is elected at large.
The candidates don't align themselves with a particular party.
IN Q=It gives
((JOHN HAMLIN/CITY COUNCIL CANDIDATE:IT GIVES US AN OPPORTUNITY FOR AN
INDIVIDUAL TO SPEAK TO THE ISSUE AND NOT TRYING TO HAVE TO COVER UP FOR
SOMETHING THAT HAS BEEN BROUGHT ABOUT THEIR PARTICULAR PERSONALITY OR SOMETHING
OF THAT NATURE, YOU CAN CONCENTRATE SOLELY ON THE ISSUES. ))
John Hamlin is running for re-election.
Joyce Glaise and Stokes Daniels are also hoping to remain on board for
A total of five newcomers, however, say it's time for change.
IN Q=It's all
((SHERMAN SAUNDERS/CITY COUNCIL CANDIDATE:IT'S ALL ABOUT PEOPLE, MAKING OUR
COMMUNITY BETTER AND THAT'S MY THEME, TEAMWORK FOR A BETTER COMMUNITY. ))
OUT Q=better community.
In the 1994 City Council election, voter turnout was 43-point four percent.
So, we still have a ways to go to meet that mark.
Double Boxes=Teresa and Tracy/Microwave
(Teresa tosses to Tracy)
Let's head now to our New River Valley Newsroom.
Tracy, how are things shaping up there.
Christiansburg has seen most of the action here in the New River Valley.
Officials report an unusually high turnout, with voters drawn perhaps by
controversy over new recreation facilities, and the eight candidates running
for three seats.
IN Q=Many of the voters
SUPER=01-Marylee Bush/Christiansburg Voter; :07
SUPER=01-Bob Hockett/Christiansburg Council Candidate; :22
SUPER=01-Bob Abraham/Christiansburg Council Candidate; :27
SUPER=01-Scott Weaver/Christiansburg Council Candidate; :48
OUT Q=families settling in.
(( Many of the voters in Christiansburg were braving this chilly gray day in
the hope of beating the heat later on.
((MARYLEE BUSH/CHRISTIANSBURG VOTER: I THINK WE'VE GOT A LOT OF GOOD
CANDIDATES, BUT IT WAS INTERESTED IN THE ONES THAT WERE PUSHING FOR A SWIMMING
POOL FOR CHRISTIANSBURG. ))
In fact, controversy over a new recreation center is what drew most of the
six first- time candidates to the race.
((BOB HOCKETT/CHRISTIANSBURG COUNCIL CANDIDATE: I'VE BEEN INVOLVED IN
RECREATION AND COACHING AND THINGS LIKE THAT AND JUST SEEN THAT WE REALLY HAVE
A LACK OF FACILITIES HERE IN TOWN. ))
((BOB ABRAHAM/CHRISTIANSBURG COUNCIL CANDIDATE: I THINK THE COUNCIL NEEDS TO BE
RESPONSIVE TO THE PEOPLE THAT ELECTED THEM, AND I ALSO WOULD VERY MUCH LIKE TO
SEE A SWIMMING POOL IN THE RECREATION CENTER.))
By mid-afternoon, turnout was on a record pace for a Christiansburg council
Incumbent Scott Weaver says it's the best he's seen in his 28 years on
((SCOTT WEAVER/CHRISTIANSBURG COUNCIL CANDIDATE: AND THAT PLEASES ME, BECAUSE
MAYBE THE EIGHT PEOPLE RUNNING HAVE CREATED A LITTLE BIT MORE ENTHUSIASM. ))
The large turnout may also be reflective of Christiansburg's changing face,
with more and more younger families settling in.))
It remains to be seen whether the those younger voters play a role in
changing the face of council.
Double Boxes=Keith and Tracy/Microwave
One more race of interest we'll be checking on later--Hillsville mayor
Barton Cooley, recently charged with D-U-I, challenged by the former mayor he
defeated in the last election, Jack Akers.
The stock market took a tumble today.
The Dow dropped 43 points closing at 54 hundred 20.
NASDAQ lost three and a half points.
Virginia corrections officials are releasing little information tonight
about the stabbing of an officer at Mecklenburg Correctional Center.
SUPER=03-Mecklenburg Co./File Tape;
A spokeswoman says a correctional officer was stabbed by an inmate Saturday
at the maximum security facility that houses the state's death row.
That officer underwent surgery and is still in critical condition.
A source close to the investigation says a metal shank that may have come
from a boot or a fan was used.
Most Mecklenburg inmates are still without fans since a metal fan part
caused a security breach on death row in April.
Governor George Allen is taking credit for President Clinton's recent
changes to the Goals 2000 program.
Allen has directed his Board of Education members to evaluate Clinton's
changes to see if they still feel there are too many strings attached to the
The Governor writes that, quoting now, "concessions would not have been
wrested from President Clinton if Virginia...had not taken a strong and firm
stand against federal intrusion."
Allen also accuses Lieutenant Governor Don Beyer of exploiting the issue
Coming up tonight in sports, the big Bull gets a much deserved honor.
There's another interesting twist to the Butch Hobson saga,
and Lance Armstrong finished well off the pace in today's Stage 7 of the Tour
Dupont, we'll let you know if he maintained the overall lead, and how he was
treated by the folks in Wytheville this morning.
Today's chess match between overall leader Lance Armstrong and the wrest of
his challengers did not stop Federico Colonna of team Mapei-GB from winning
Stage 7 of the Tour DuPont in downtown Bristol.
Colonna crossed the finish line in Bristol in a mad sprint with a small pack
of cyclists. The peleton was not far behind.
It was a day of strategies. Overall leader Lance Armstrong conserved his
energy and finished in the second pack of cyclists. He is resting up for
tomorrow's stage 8, the most difficult of the Tour DuPont. It involves 8
categorized climbs crammed into 109 miles, including the grueling accent up
Beech Mountain before the finish in Beech Mountain, North Carolina.
The town of Wytheville marked the starting point for the stage. But
America's Premier Cycling event began under less than ideal conditions.
A steady rain fell all morning, but the weather hardly stopped a decent
sized crowd from turning out for the stage 7 start.
Most came to see overall leader Lance Armstrong, who received a warm welcome
during his introduction.
Wytheville mayor trent Crewe then presented the Texan with a piece of art
work depicting scenes in the Wytheville area.
IN Q="we had
((TRENT CREWE/MAYOR OF WYTHEVILLE:))
SUPER=01-Trent Crewe/Mayor of Wytheville; :00
OUT Q=...where they stopped"
Armstrong packed away his parting gifts for the start of the race. The
cyclists pulled out of Wytheville at 11 am headed down Main Street.
The cyclists hit the town of Rural Retreat for the first of two Coolmax
sprint lines in the stage.
The pace was noticeably slower than usual because of the wet, slippery
conditions. From Rural Retreat, the riders face two mountain climbs and another
sprint before the finish in Bristol.
The Chicago Bulls look to stay unbeaten in the postseason as they take on the
Knicks tonight in game two of their best of seven series.
Earlier today, Chicago coach Phil Jackson finally got some much deserved
Despite coaching the Bulls to three titles in 7 years, he had never been
named the league's coach of the year.
Today he easily won the award in a landslide over runner-up Mike Fratello of
The bizarre story concerning the arrest of former Redsox manager Butch Hobson
gets stranger by the minute.
SUPER=03-Mobile, AL; :00
Hobson, who returned home to Alabama early this morning, was arrested by
federal agents and charged with cocaine possesion.
Today Hobson's lawyer said two grams of cocaine were found in the room, but
it wasn't Hobson's.
He says the drugs arrived in an overnight package, and Hobson opened the
envelope expecting money that was owed him.
(toss to Jean)
The polls will be closing soon and the results will be coming in--we will be
keeping you up to date and
Double Boxes=Keith and Jean/Newsroom
Jean Jadhon joins us in the newsroom with more on that.
Keith, we'll have updates thoroughout the evening, with special reports
just before 8 and 9 p-m. Then join us for News 7 at 11, and we'll have
reaction from the winners and losers.
Take SS=Election Web Page
And if you want to keep up with the numbers as they come in you can check
out News 7's Web Page. The Internet home page address is teleweb dot com,
slash--wdbj seven-- slash.
Double Boxes=Keith and Jean/Newsroom
sports tonight on News 7 at 11.
Join us for Election 96 results plus all the latest news, weather, and