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November 4, 2020

COVID-19 State of Emergency – Zoom Meeting


Council Members Present
Jeffrey W. Haislip (Fluvanna County), Chairman
Colin D. Stolle (Virginia Beach), First Vice Chairman
Nathan R. Green (James City County/Williamsburg), Second Vice Chairman
Shannon L. Taylor (Henrico County), Secretary
Roy F. Evans (Smyth County), Past Chairman

Council District Representatives:
1. LaBravia J. Jenkins (Fredericksburg)
3. Georgette C. Phillips (Isle of Wight)
6. David L. Ledbetter (Waynesboro)
7. Travis D. Bird (Spotsylvania County)
8. Bryan L. Porter (Alexandria)
9. Charles H. Slemp, III (Wise County)
10. Amy M. Ashworth (Prince William County)
11. Steve Descano (Fairfax County)

Other Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Present
Donald S. Caldwell (Roanoke City)
Nancy G. Parr (Chesapeake)
E. M. Wright (Buckingham County)
Eric L. Olsen (Stafford County)
Beverly P. Leatherbury (Northampton County)
Susan O. Fierro (Prince George County)
R. Bryan Haskins (Pittsylvania County)
Marsha L. Garst (Rockingham County/Harrisonburg)
Christian E. Rehak (Radford)
Anne M. Williams (Clarke County)
Parisa Dehghani-Tafti (Arlington County/Falls Church)
Buta Biberaj (Loudoun County)
Mary Pettit (Montgomery County)
Leanne Watrous (Nottoway County)
Clarissa Berry (Madison County)
Stacey Davenport (Chesterfield County)
Tom Bowers (Matthews County)
Josh Elrod (Buena Vista)
Andrew Nester (Henry County)
Rick Newman (Hopewell)
Patti Watson (Greensville County/Emporia)
Joe Platania (Charlottesville)
Meredith Adkins (King & Queen County)
Les Fleet (Appomattox County)
Colette McEachin (Richmond)

Deputy Commonwealth’s Attorneys Present
Marie Walls (Suffolk)
David Chappell (Brunswick County)
Heather Hovermale (Winchester)
Matt Lowery (Fairfax County)

CASC Staff Present
Jane Sherman Chambers
Elliott Casey

VACA Staff Present

Call to Order
Mr. Haislip called the meeting to order at 12:04 p.m.

The draft minutes from the September 23, 2020, meeting were previously posted and circulated to Council. The minutes were approved as submitted.

Chairman’s Report

Administrator’s Report
Ms. Chambers congratulated the new Commonwealth’s Attorneys in Petersburg, Pulaski County and Sussex County.

Old Business

CATF Update
Ms. Chambers reviewed the CATF balance sheet reflecting account activity through September 30, 2020.

Updated Agendas
Ms. Chambers circulated and reviewed the updated agendas for the 2020 Executive Program & 2021 Summer Conference. Mr. Casey described the newly-added presentation entitled “How Law Enforcement has Addressed and Adapted to Civil Unrest in 2020”. Ms. Chambers reminded members that this year’s Executive Program will be available only online.

CASC Implicit Bias Webinar Update
Ms. Chambers reported that CASC’s recent webinar on Implicit Bias was very good. Ms. McEachin stated that she found it to be very engaging and thorough and she has made it mandatory viewing for attorneys in her office. The webinar was recorded and is available on Prosecutor’s Encyclopedia. Ms. Chambers reported that the presenter, DA Jarvis Parson from Brazos County, Texas, has been invited to speak in a general session at Spring Institute, as well.

State Agency Budget Cuts & Hiring Freeze Update
Ms. Chambers reported that state agencies have been advised that no new budget cuts are being requested at this time. No “new” money that was originally included in the 2020 budget will be reinstated, however. The state employee hiring freeze has been lifted. Ms. Chambers advised that staff attorney Larry Martin will retire effective December 31, 2020, and that Traffic Safety Resource Prosecutor (TSRP) Jake Lambert will be making a lateral move into that vacancy. CASC will be advertising and hiring a new, grant-funded TSRP.

New Business

CASC Finance Committee Meeting
Ms. Chambers advised that the CASC Finance Committee should plan on meeting at some point during the Executive Program. Committee chairman, Mr. Wright, agreed that was a good idea.

Council Vacancy
Ms. Chambers reported that Council has a representative vacancy from the 4th Congressional District. She asked that this be taken up at the VACA Annual Meeting in December, along with the appointment of odd-numbered congressional district representatives. A verbal listing of the cities & counties in the 4th Congressional District was provided.

New Officer Training
Ms. Chambers reported that the Comp Board’s New Officer Training is scheduled to be online from December 9 – 11. There has been discussion about holding the CASC/VACA portion of the training live at CASC’s Richmond training room. No final decision has been made. There are only 3 new CA’s this year, all of whom have had previous experience as assistant commonwealth’s attorneys.

Reminder: Phone Attendees to Notify CASC
Mr. Haislip reminded anyone calling in to notify CASC of their attendance at this meeting.

Public Comment

There being no further business before Council, the meeting adjourned at 12:21 p.m. The next regularly scheduled meeting is December 2, 2020, at 9:00 a.m. via Zoom.