A Metro section article Thursday incorrectly identified Richard Leibach's cost in the Alexndria Democratic Party. He is the party treasurer. Leibach also was quoted as saying that Mayor-elect James P. Moran, Jr. "split the Democratic Party." Leibach actually said "the split was caused when Jim left the ticket.
Before Alexandria Mayor-elect James P. Moran Jr. takes office July 1, he has one important appointment to keep. On Friday, he must appear in Circuit Court for sentencing on a 1984 violation of the state's conflict-of-interest law.
The misdemeanor charge, which forced Moran to resign from City Council last June, carries a maximum penalty of 12 months in jail and a fine of $1,000. But even Moran's political enemies say that should Moran be sent to jail, his recently released list of campaign contributors shows such widespread support that they have no doubt he is Alexandria's rising political star.
Moran himself said last week that he plans to run for Congress in the future.
"A lot of people who supported Moran wanted to buy a congressman," said City Council member Donald C. Casey, who was defeated in the May 7 election.
Several contributors who gave $1,000 or more to Moran's campaign coffers, which took in a total of $50,970, were national trade associations and labor unions with no direct interest in Alexandria, according to campaign finance reports.
"He's an up-and-coming star," said Michael E. Monroe, the general vice president of the International Brotherhood of Painters and Allied Trades. "We donate money where we get the most mileage out of it -- just like any other investment," said Monroe, whose organization gave Moran's campaign $1,000.
Mayor Charles E. Beatley, defeated by Moran in the race, was once Moran's mentor. However, he broke all ties with Moran after the conflict-of-interest charge last year.
Moran, 39, a lifelong Democrat who challenged the incumbent mayor as an independent, violated the conflict-of-interest law last year by casting a City Council vote on a parking lot matter that involved a personal business partner.
Beatley, who spent $21,618 seeking his sixth term as mayor, said he was concerned that Moran might be "tempted again" to vote on issues involving developers and businessmen with whom he is financially tied. "Big contributors don't give you something if they don't want something in return," he said.
The tall, blond-haired mayor-elect dismissed the "parking lot mistake" as history in a recent interview. Then, with the ease of a man who recently won a comeback election, he grinned, saying one of his top priorities will be to try to alleviate the Old Town parking crunch by providing subsidized parking for shoppers and visitors who use parking garages only briefly.
Moran also said in his first few months in office he will attempt to provide a more visible police presence on the streets, circulate a newsletter to registered voters, and provide for day-care facilities and affordable housing.
After proving himself in Alexandria, Moran said he would like to have an office on the other side of the Potomac. As a congressman, he said, he could deal with the issues that "really excite me" -- foreign aid, federal housing programs and social services.
Some Democratic party members said they are concerned that Moran's use of Alexandria as a stepping stone could lead to greater Republican influence there.
"He's split the Democratic Party," said Richard Leibach, the party chairman. Leibach said that though Moran calls himself a Democrat, he has not "opened his arms to the party.