Perhaps now is the time, following news accounts of recent days, for the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors to rehabilitate the memory of the late George J. Kelley Jr., the county executive who resigned early in 1972 under intense pressure over an issue involving Metro.
What Kelley did was to violate County Board policy at the time. He had intense doubts that Metro's proposed takeover of the privately owned regional bus system would benefit the county and its taxpayers.
Although a majority of the board supported the takeover, Kelley joined a private group that went to Capitol Hill to voice reservations. For this, he was sacked, although the action was cloaked in the form of a resignation.
But wait! Now Fairfax has a new majority on its County Board that thinks the resulting Metrobus system, which requires a $20 million annual subsidy from Fairfax taxpayers, is a fiscal disaster. It warned on Monday that the regional transit authority was demanding too much in subsidy, and that from now on it will hold its payments down to the current level.
In other words, from the Fairfax board's view, Kelley was right in the warning flags he raised.
At age 57, Kelley died in 1979, seven years after his departure under a cloud. As the second Fairfax County executive, after Carlton Massey, for whom the county's Massey Building headquarters is named, Kelley would seem to deserve a bit of appreciative attention from a reconstituted Fairfax County board. Overstating the Case
It wasn't Metro Scene's fault for the most part, but based on information from the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Commission, we overstated yesterday one aspect of the interstate taxicab fare increase that becomes effective July 1.
"I'm afraid I oversummarized on the phone. Mea culpa," said commission Executive Director William H. McGilvery. Heck, Bill, I share blame for not repeating and double-checking what you told me.
Anyhow, the $1 evening rush-hour surcharge for cabs traveling across state lines in the Washington area starting July 1 will affect only trips that start in the District of Columbia, McGilvery said. They won't apply to trips that start in Maryland or in Virginia, at the airports or elsewhere.
The theory of a surcharge, already collected by cab drivers in D.C., is that they're involved in heavy outbound rush-hour traffic; those going into the city, McGilvery said, are considered "counterflow." Power of the Press
So much for the alleged power of the press. A week after we reported that the Farecard machine at the bottom of the Metro elevator in Rosslyn had been out of order for at least three weeks and probably much longer, the machine was still on the blink yesterday. And, by my observation, countless passengers have managed to keep from paying fares.