Ingram prepares for Supervisor seat 

Tunstall+Board+of+Supervisors%2C+Vic+Ingram%2C+shaking+senior+class+president%2C+Caron+Murphy%27s%2C+hand.

Daniella Espinoza

Tunstall Board of Supervisors, Vic Ingram, shaking senior class president, Caron Murphy's, hand.

Ca'ron Murphy, Feature Editor

As a 1975 graduate of Tunstall High School, Vic Ingram is intensely familiar with the district in which he ran for the Board of Supervisors seat. 

His campaign began with prayer. “Some people approached me about running and I said, ‘I’ll pray about it and talk to my wife’. When I had peace about it and her support, then I thought it was something I should do.” He also made an in-person visit to incumbent Tim Barber to let him know that he was running. 

Ingram won his Board of Supervisors seat with 1,218 votes (48%) to incumbent, Tim Barber 1,075 votes (42%), and Doc Kelly (8%) 218 votes.

His victory added to Ingram’s natural humility. “This is one of the most overwhelming responsibilities I’ve ever been given. I want to be a Supervisor for all of the people. I want people to be able to call on me.”

Ingram attributes his win to “the fact that I worked in this county for 30 years…and that I ran a good, honest campaign.” He added, “This is not something I sought. It came looking for me.”

Ingram’s career in public service began as a volunteer fireman at Westover Hills. After graduating from Tunstall, Ingram joined the Air Force with the idea of being a firefighter, but was placed in law enforcement. His 34-year career in law enforcement began in Langley, Virginia, continued with the Hampton Police force, and then brought him back to Pittsylvania County where Ingram stayed for 30 years. 

Ingram’s campaign was centered around three major ideas: education, public safety, and economic development. A major issue that Ingram continued to hear about while campaigning was the “trash tax” of $120 a year. 

The “Trash Tax”

The Pittsylvania County Solid Waste Disposal Fee is a county fee applicable to all livable residential domains. The fee is implemented by the Board of Supervisors and is subject to change each year. The fee was originally $60 in its first application; however, it has doubled in its reintroduction due to the severe necessity for solid waste disposal reform and increased pollution in the Pittsylvania County area. 

“I realize that $120 is not the same thing to everyone. If we could cut back on the amount that people pay and not cut back on the services, I would surely be in favor of that. That is going to be quite a challenge honestly.”

Ingram feels that the solid waste tax is “a travesty.” He believes that the new board will have to do a significant amount of research and will have to look at alternative methods to allocate funds for what previous boards neglected for the landfill. “Paying for expenses that shouldn’t have been canceled is a problem,” Ingram states. 

Education 

Regarding education, Ingram said, “I think our children and our teachers deserve something better.”

Ingram acknowledges that teacher retention is a major issue nationally, and Pittsylvania County is no different. “Moral is based on a combination of things including who they work for and how they are compensated.”

“Teaching is a calling. You will accept low pay and low benefits to meet the desires of your heart which is to serve.” Ingram wants to do the things necessary, so that teachers can answer this calling while also not having to suffer financially. 

Public Safety 

Ingram’s background is firmly rooted in public safety and sees the safety of our schools as a major concern. 

School security will be a priority, and Ingram believes that a school the size of Tunstall should have more than one resource officer. Individual classroom security, specifically dealing with containment also needs to be addressed. Ingram expresses a need for metal detectors and acknowledges that are very expensive, but “What price can you put on a human life? What price can you put on your children’s safety?” 

Warning signs that lead up to acts of violence also need to be carefully monitored. “Collectively [the mental health industry] is letting us down,” said Ingram who believes there needs to be a more aggressive approach with individuals who are showing warning signs to be potentially violent. 

Economic Development 

Finally, Ingram sees his terms on the Board of Supervisors as one where he can impact local economic development. “I do not believe that by being a Supervisor you should sit back and wait for things to happen. I think you need to be aggressive and really partner up with our economic growth department.”

He sees 58 East/West as a major corridor that could benefit from restaurant for both local residents and passers through.  

Ingram’s own first job was working at McDonalds “making Big Macs” which taught him a lot about the value of hard work. It also taught him that “he didn’t want to do that for the rest of his life.” 

Industrial hemp and solar farms was an example that Ingram uses as a plus for land use for economic growth. “I agree with using common sense when it comes to government,” said Ingram.

Taking Office 

Currently Ingram is retired from public police work and serves as the president of the Danville-Pittsylvania Cancer Association. He also owns and operates three small businesses in the area: Commonwealth Driver Improvement, a private investigator business, Risk Management of Virginia, a polygraph testing service.  

Ingram will take office January 2, 2020, and begin his four year term.