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LaFay also mentioned, "Richmond has been slow to embrace the living roof concept." The organization that I work for, The Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay, hopes to accelerate the green roof movement within the greater Richmond area through a promotional contest aimed at commercial and multiresidential facilities. Thanks to a grant recently received from the Environmental Protection Agency's Chesapeake Bay Program at the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation, the Alliance is offering up to $28,000 toward the construction costs of a green roof that can serve as a demonstration site following its completion. For more information, please contact our Richmond office at (804) 775-0951 or smoulds@acb-online.org.

Stacey Moulds
Senior Program Coordinator
Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay

Coalition Explains Endorsement Process

To address any concerns or speculations made by candidates and members of the press regarding the Coalition for a Greater Richmond's process for giving endorsements, I offer Style the scoop from inside our organization. As you probably know, the Coalition board is a diverse reflection of our community held together by a mission to make our region greater.

The Coalition seeks to promote a new vision of leadership for the Greater Richmond area, built on communication and regional cooperation that moves beyond the historical barriers of race, socioeconomics, political party and geography. We give every candidate the same opportunity to be heard. Our ability to support worthwhile initiatives and visionary individuals who demonstrate the qualifications, character and progressive attitudes needed to unify our communities is the very reason that most candidates are willing to participate in our process.

We contact every candidate by letter, phone or e-mail and confirm that they have received our invitation to participate in the process. If interested, they are given three weeks to answer a simple questionnaire and are scheduled for a face-to-face interview. Following the interview, a recommendation is made to the board for endorsement. Although we support every candidate's desire to serve, we must make a distinction for the voters and the future of the region based on our mission — not political leanings or ethnicity.

In our process this year, only four candidates chose not to participate (generally because they were unopposed), and only one candidate forgot to show up for his scheduled interview (Letters, Oct. 13). The candidates who are genuinely interested in receiving our endorsement and support are only required to exhibit the desire to be heard and the simple ability to follow through. We are proud to say that nearly every candidate cleared his or her schedule to accommodate the Coalition. And for those who made us believe in them, we will make their efforts worthwhile.

After many hours of deliberation and quality time with each candidate, we believe that our endorsed candidates demonstrate the best ability to lead their respective districts. For those who participated in the process but did not receive our endorsement, we applaud their efforts and will support them in every possible way if they are elected.

Mark Pounders
Chair, Coalition for a Greater Richmond

Don't Denigrate Powhite Tolls

When I was a young college graduate living in the Fan District in the late 1960s, I was teaching school out in Chesterfield County. Every morning I would drive south across the river on the Huguenot Bridge feeling a mixture of sympathy and incredulity while passing the line of inbound commuter cars (most with just one occupant) stretching from the light at the Tuckahoe Apartments at Three Chopt Road all the way back across the bridge to Buford Road. The Powhite Parkway did not exist back then ("Cents of Frustration," News & Features, Oct. 13).

When the construction of the Parkway was announced, then completed, I thought to myself that those commuters would certainly be grateful to not sit in traffic for so long getting to work. Little did I know that a generation of folks who were not even alive when the Parkway was built would foolishly denigrate the Parkway for its tolls, as has Scott Bass.

He has no idea just how bad the commute was prior to Powhite. Perhaps Bass should give up his day job and start writing for a living at his home in Chesterfield. Maybe he could get a job flipping burgers at some fast-food place on Midlothian. Bass really doesn't need to work or shop north of the river.

Bass and the other Powhite whiners of late need a reality check badly! Fifty cents a trip is a bargain, believe me, especially with gas over $2 per gallon.

H. Watkins Ellerson


We misspelled Scenic Virginia Executive Director Leighton Powell's name (Street Talk, Oct. 6). And we used an incorrect middle initial for mayoral candidate Lawrence E. Williams Sr. (Cover Story, Oct. 6). Style regrets the errors.

Letters to the editor may be sent to: letters@styleweekly.com

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