We endorse both the substance and the tenor of Dulles Supervisor Matt Letourneau’s statement
regarding the county sheriff’s office-police department debate. It is the most level-headed and rational take on the sheriff’s office-form of county government debate we’ve seen.
County Chairwoman Phyllis Randall, a Democrat, and Sheriff Mike Chapman, a Republican, don’t particularly care for one another, and that — paired with our current political climate — is going to naturally cloud both their judgment and their choice of words on this “legitimate topic of discussion,” as Supervisor Letourneau (R) called it. Frankly, Randall and Chapman’s already formed biases on the issue are going to make us expressly skeptical of any “factual information” they disclose on this debate.
The takeaway right now is simple: We don’t know enough yet.
Let’s get the full picture — the full and accurate financial costs, the impact on county operations and other constitutional officers and answers to any other questions the public may have. To do those things well — again, as Mr. Letourneau pointed out — we’re going to need time beyond November.
The form of government question is indeed worth examining. County leaders should explore all options at their disposal. And both they and Loudoun residents shouldn’t make up their minds without all the facts or simply because an (R) or a (D) is touting this or that.