John P. Flannery and David L. Whitmer, both former chairmen of the Loudoun County Democratic Committee, said this week that they have put aside their differences to organize Loudoun Democrats for Vice President Gore in the race for the Democratic presidential nomination.

Whitmer emerged the victor in December 1997 when he and Flannery waged a rare duel for the local party chairmanship. Flannery would have been the incumbent in the contest, had he not resigned after disappointing results in that year's November general elections.

Whitmer, who blamed disorganization for the party's poor showing, was elected chairman--and elected again in new balloting after Flannery challenged the outcome, alleging in part that Whitmer had campaigned improperly.

State party officials ordered another election because followers of perennial presidential candidate Lyndon H. LaRouche Jr. had been excluded from participating and because membership and leadership elections should have been held on different days. They did not rule on the allegation against Whitmer.

Other Northern Virginia Democrats who have come out for Gore include Sen. Charles S. Robb, Rep. James P. Moran Jr. and former lieutenant governor Donald S. Beyer Jr.

The state Democratic Party will hold a two-day convention beginning June 2 to select 99 delegates to the Democratic National Convention, which will be held Aug. 14-17 in Los Angeles. Local delegates will be elected at a Loudoun Democratic Caucus on April 15.

Any Loudoun Democrat interested in being a delegate or participating in the local caucus should contact Flannery at 540-3389-7248 or by e-mail at JonFlan@aol.com; or David Whitmer at 703-729-7996 or david@whitmer.org.

Clem Goes for Third Mayoral Term

Leesburg Mayor James E. Clem said Tuesday that he intends to run in May for a third term. Announcing his candidacy, Clem said his agenda for the next four years would include improved public safety, parks and public transportation as well as traffic management.

One likely opponent is Vice Mayor B.J. Webb, whose announcement is anticipated later this month.

The Eyes and Ears of Wolf

Donna Crowley, who works for Rep. Frank R. Wolf (R-Va.), will visit the Leesburg town offices on West Market Street from 9 to 10 a.m. Jan. 20. She will be available to talk with constituents who need assistance or have problems of a federal nature, such as with the Social Security Administration, Department of Labor, Immigration and Naturalization Service, Internal Revenue Service, Department of Veterans Affairs or other agency.

Citizens are also welcome to express opinions or concerns, particularly on national topics or issues before Congress. Constituents also can call Crowley at Wolf's Winchester office at 800-850-3463 (in state) or 540-667-0990 or visit that office at 110 N. Cameron St.

Leesburg Picks Residents for Traffic Task Force

The Leesburg Town Council has appointed citizens to a new Residential Traffic Task Force.

Appointees include Wayne Henderson, of Edwards Ferry Road; Susan Horne, of Hague Drive; Nancy Klimkosky, of Smartts Lane; Stephen Robin, of Cornwall Street; John Ross, of Old Waterford Road; Heath and Janie Stockton, of North Street; and Elizabeth Whiting, of Edwards Ferry Road. Council member Mervin Jackson will also serve on the panel, along with a member of the Leesburg Planning Commission to be named later.

The task force was established to make recommendations to the Town Council within the next six months on traffic calming, pedestrian safety and other issues. For more information, contact the town office at 703-777-2420.

Planning Commission Sets New Schedule

The Loudoun County Planning Commission has revised the times and dates of its regular meeting schedule.

The commission will meet from 3 to 5:30 p.m. Wednesdays to discuss a comprehensive review of the General Plan and Zoning Ordinance. Groups and individuals will be invited to share their views during these meetings.

In addition, there will be evening "public input" sessions throughout the county so that all citizens can participate.

The regular meetings of the Planning Commission to deal with applications and formal discussion of the Smart Growth Strategy will be held at 6 p.m. Wednesdays--except for the third Wednesday of each month, which is reserved for public hearings. Dinner breaks have been eliminated.

Public hearings will also start at 6 p.m. Any issues likely to generate substantial public input will be scheduled for a specific time so the public can be heard.

All commission meetings and hearings will be held at the County Government Building, 1 Harrison St. SE, Leesburg.

Office, Bank Buildings Underway in Leesburg

Ground was broken Tuesday in Leesburg for a three-story office building at Waverly Park on South King Street.

Loudoun Properties LLC, of Vienna, plans to construct an 18,000-square-foot building at 606 S. King St. and a 9,000-square-foot drive-through and walk-in bank building at 608 S. King St. Construction will begin immediately, with occupancy planned for late fall 2000.

Thomas A. Toth, a principal with Loudoun Properties, said the Toth Financial Advisory Group of Vienna will move its headquarters to the building and occupy the entire third floor. The first and second floors will be available for lease through Vaaler Real Estate Co.

Anti-Sprawl Group Extends Its Influence

Voters to Stop Sprawl, which helped propel several "smart growth" candidates to victory in Loudoun's November elections, announced that it has opened a chapter in Prince William County.

"Citizens throughout Virginia are seeking alternatives to the high taxes, long commutes and classes in trailers," said VSS President Joe Maio. "In the Prince William election, the issue was not as clearly defined as it was in Loudoun. The next election will be different."

Maio said smart growth "is not no growth. People will need houses to live in. We hope the development community recognizes that it is in their interests to work with us. We have demonstrated that they cannot outvote us, no matter how much they spend on campaigns."