Yesterday's headline story in The Virginian-Pravda took me by surprise. However, it's slow news around the Fourth of July holiday unless you want wall-to-wall coverage of picnics, fireworks, etc. Therefore, they ran a feature story on Virginia Beach Mayor Will Sessoms http://hamptonroads.com/2009/07/mayor-will-sessoms-ceo-virginia-beach-inc
After reading the story, I have some thoughts:
1. Transportation: Virginia Beach now has the Chairs at the TPO (Sessoms) and TDCHR (Jim Wood) at the same time. A great chance for the Beach to show leadership and push a multimodal solution to Hampton Roads' Transportation problems.
2. Regionalism - it's a demographic inevitability that Virginia Beach will be drawn closer into the region. For nearly a generation the Beach's population growth has been entirely minority, mostly from Norfolk and Portsmouth. With family and friends there, you have a harder case convincing voters that Regionalism is a bad thing. A light rail network connecting us with them would interlock our fate.
In this Dillon Rule state, local government can only accomplish what Richmond will allow it to. Therefore, mustering resources to push regional goals at the state level is common sense.
3. Minority Roundtable - it has huge potential, with the catch being how many of it's proposals get enacted into City policy.
If Sessoms can put together a coalition of the business community, the minority communities, and the Republican establishment, he easily wins reelection in 2012.