Jail Alternatives: Home-based Detention Programs

JMU grad student Joanmarie Foster continues her weekly series exploring alternatives to incarceration. Thanks for joining me again. Last week, I introduced myself and expressed my sincere wish that local government and citizens come together to explore alternatives to building a new jail in the community. Old South High has closely followed the talks, meetings, […]

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The New Forest Management Plan Pretty Much Bans Fracking. Here Are Five Talking Points for Enlightened Debaters of the Issue

Long after everyone had been expecting, the U.S. Forest Service released a new management plan this week for the George Washington National Forest. Fracking was the hot-potato issue responsible for the long delay. When the draft plan was out for review, the overwhelming majority of more than 50,000 public comments opposed allowing fracking in the […]

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Guest Review: Places of the Heart

This is a guest post submitted by Joy Loving, who reviews a new book by retired JMU theater professor Roger Hall Not too long ago I played bridge with Roger Hall and, serendipitously, he mentioned he had just gotten a book published through Amazon/Kindle. I congratulated him and asked what the book is about. He […]

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24 Hour Project Returns: Court Square Theater seeking performers now

The first ever 24 Hour Project in Harrisonburg was hosted at Court Square Theater last January, showcasing a full 24 hours of local-ish films, poetry, live music, dance, comedy and more.  Folks brought pillows and PJs for the later hours.  Now it’s almost that time again and Court Square Theater is now accepting performance applications. […]

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Finding Alternatives to Building a New Jail in Harrisonburg

This is a guest post by Joanmarie Foster, a JMU graduate student interested in the jail planning process the city and the county are currently undertaking. This and the series of posts that will ensue were originally written for a class assignment. “As a student, I arrived here almost six years ago as an undergraduate […]

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A $60 million new jail by the landfill that’s projected to reach capacity in seven years is the plan to fix overcrowding – that is, if it’s actually a real plan at all

Here’s the latest from the city-county committee that’s been meeting since the summer to figure out a solution for the severe overcrowding problem at the jail downtown: a new $60 million facility on a county-owned property on Willow Springs Road on the very southern edge of the city, next to the landfill. At this point, it’s […]

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The school board candidates on why you should care about the school board

The very last names on the ballot for Harrisonburg voters next week will be the candidates for school board – a fitting place for an elected body that generally has a much lower profile than the city council (but has primary oversight of the biggest single item in the city budget). Old South High invited […]

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The best place, the best area

This fall, I’ve been excited to get involved in radio journalism for the first time, thanks to a new effort by our public radio station, WMRA, to up its local news game. One of the early projects that I’ve worked on has been Becoming American, a six-part series on immigration and citizenship in the area. […]

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Five encouragements for the creatives of Harrisonburg

This is a guest post by Andy Harbick. Like many of you, since the closing of the Blue Nile, I have been reflecting about local culture, small business, innovation and living boldly. I certainly will miss the Blue Nile: the lunch buffet, the art exhibits, the fine beer, the cool bartenders and the awesome community […]

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The beginnigs of an explanation for our recent jail population growth

For months, we’ve been wondering what caused the inmate population at the Rockingham-Harrisonburg Regional Jail to jump by 50 percent in the 18-month period between January 2013 and June of this year: Now, Moseley Architects – the consultant hired by the city and county to write a community-based corrections plan – has provided detail on […]

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