Saturday, January 11, 2014

Gloucester Main Street Preservation Trust, Secret Shadow Gloucester, VA Government Extended Into 2014?

Gloucester County, Virginia Vice Chair, Board of Supervisor's, Ashley Chriscoe,  has been assigned a board member seat with what we consider the secret shadowy Gloucester, Virginia government, Gloucester Main Street Preservation Trust.  An organization that makes no sense in anything they do other than to extend themselves into the county government and make changes that seem to do more harm to the businesses on Main Street than they do good and cost taxpayers a lot of extra money they should not need to spend.

  The tentacles of the Gloucester Main Street Area seem to continue to grow well past their initial intended area and digging into the pockets of many taxpayers who have shown their dislike for such.   The Gloucester Main Street Preservation Trust is not a non profit organization.  As such, since they are conducting business, they must be a for profit business.  If this is so, do they have a business license?  And if they have a business license, why is a county Board of Supervisor, Vice Chair sitting on their board as a board appointment?   Last year we showed how Louise Theberge sat on a seat with the Gloucester Main Street Preservation Trust and voted on any project that came up before the Board of Supervisors through the Gloucester Main Street Preservation Trust.  Will Ashley Chriscoe use his new position to expose this group or will he excuse himself from any votes that come up with any business coming from the Gloucester Main Street Preservation Trust?  We will be watching this very closely.  Carter Borden is back on the Gloucester Main Street Preservation Trust Board of Directors this year, but he is no longer a Board of Supervisor so it's a non issue.  He can just help the GMSPT Board with inside county info based on having been on the inside.

  Louise Theberge is off the board this year.  Guess her usefulness is no longer useful.  Carter Borden was on the GMSPT Board back in 2011 when he was also the chair of the Board of Supervisors.  We have not looked at his voting record for when he sat on both seats.

  From the Gloucester Main Street Preservation Trust website, Projects page.


Lamppost Basket Beautification Project

Description Of The Project

Beginning in 2007 and running thru 2010, the Main Street Preservation Trust managed and predominantly funded the installment, planting, and maintenance of 40 flowering lamppost baskets along Gloucester Main Street.  Several baskets are sponsored by community organizations, businesses, and individuals memorializing and honoring others.  These baskets have become a welcomed addition to Spring and are generally installed in early May and remain a constant visual treat until the end of October.  The baskets have served to enhance the overall aesthetics and environment on Main Street and have been enjoyed by residents and visitors alike.  To sponsor a basket, please download the form below.  Please note that as of 2011, the Cook Foundation will be taking the lead on this project as they are a 501c3 organization and therefore any lamppost basket sponsorships are tax deductible.  Please consider joining us in our beautification efforts

So as noted above in their own information, they are not a non profit organization.  If they are a trust, then how is this trust being funded and where is the money coming from?  Why do they keep working on expanding their area of control?  Why are they embedded into the county government?  Why do they even get involved in planning outside of their own business concerns?  These are some questions they simply do not answer.  It's questions every taxpayer in this county needs to be asking.  A group of concerned citizens?  Really?  Why are they not spending their money on advertising instead of giving away matching funds for facades on Main Street, but doing nothing to draw in visitors? 

  They claim to promote and sponsor events that help the businesses on Main Street such as market days where they want you to come to the Farmers Market and skip going to the actual farmers market that is already on Main Street during the summer?  Virginia Symphony concerts help local businesses how when it is held when businesses are closed?  Blues and Brews helps local merchants how?  They are selling beer and food at the event.  We simply do not get it.  

  What is also interesting is the fact that last year, they considered themselves a non profit and county records show this.  Yet according to sites that list all non profits have never listed the Gloucester Main Street Preservation Trust and again, the trust claims on their site that as of 2011, they are not a non profit organization.  Anyone remember last year's Daffodil festival fiasco?  They allow county non profit organizations to run special events without having to pay special fees, because they are exempt.  Blue and Brews was to be run under the umbrella of the Gloucester Main Street Preservation Trust instead of the Gloucester Main Street Association due to the Gloucester Main Street Association is a for profit business.  We still have the Gloucester Mathews Gazette Journal articles on this in our office.  

  Are we all being conned by a criminal organization?  We just went through the old story and it looks like we have all been conned a lot more than anyone knows.  According to the old article, Ted Wilmot, (Twitching Ted I'm not an attorney, Wilmot) Gloucester County Attorney, (Court Jester, we will figure out a way to make it happen no matter what the law says),  was working on getting an itinerant merchant exemption for a for profit organization, the Gloucester Main Street Association.  What is that about?  We covered issues with Brew Jam in the past here on this site.

  We will continue to dig on these issues as it all looks incredibly strange to say the very least.
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