Archive: June 2006

Charge: Ffx Immigration Official Gave Illegal Help

A Department of Homeland Security supervisor in the Fairfax office--who had problems with his agency before-- was jailed yesterday on charges he falsified immigration documents to help Asian immigrants get citizenship. Some question why he wasn't checked out more closely. What do you think? Here's the story: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/06/29/AR2006062901907.html...

By Robert Samsot | June 30, 2006; 10:06 AM ET | Email a Comment

Aftermath of Flooding Includes Mold, Mildew and Fungi

Today's Fairfax Extra reports County tips on how to rid homes of mold after the floodwaters. The tip sheet includes avoiding use of heating units in closed areas because that can contribute to the spread of mold spores....

By | June 29, 2006; 11:51 AM ET | Email a Comment

4th of July Events

A listing of July 4th events and fireworks locations is in today's Fairfax Extra.http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/06/28/AR2006062800033.html...

By | June 29, 2006; 10:42 AM ET | Email a Comment

Equestrian Center for Laurel Hill Park

A public riding facility, a 60-stall barn, indoor and outdoor arenas and riding trails are planned for Laurel Hill Park, former site of the Lorton prison. Today's Fairfax Extra reports an agreement between Fairfax4Horses and the Park Authority was signed June 14....

By | June 29, 2006; 10:29 AM ET | Email a Comment

Huntington Area Hit Hard by Flooding

Rising water and raw sewage has damaged more than half the 311 homes in the Huntington area of Fairfax County and will keep residents displaced until repairs can be made. Today's Metro section gives a glimpse of what the past few days have been like for the Grimes family and the uphill climb they face. Rodney Grimes and his family, who lived on Fenwick Drive, spent yesterday morning picking through what remained of their salvageable belongings....

By | June 28, 2006; 10:38 AM ET | Email a Comment

Funeral Canceled After Mistaken Identification

The funeral for William M. Heislup of Fairfax, who drowned with his friend John Walker in the Potomoac June 16, was canceled after his family found that the Baltimore medical examiner's office had made a mistake that led to the cremation of Heislup. A story in Saturday's Metro section reports that before Heislup's funeral, his brother and sister went to the funeral home and opened the casket, only to find the body of his friend. Heislup's had been cremated. The funeral was cancelled....

By | June 26, 2006; 1:16 PM ET | Email a Comment

Unfinished Amenities: A Developing Story

As a follow up to Sunday's story about developers in Fairfax leaving more than 120 projects unfinished, yesterday the Fairfax County Board called for closer oversight of development projects. Today's Metro section reports that the county has spent $1.1 million over the past five years to complete work developers have left incomplete. Projects have included unfinished roads, inadequate storm-water retention ponds, missing walking and biking trails and incomplete landscaping at condos, residential neighborhoods and office projects....

By | June 26, 2006; 12:20 PM ET | Email a Comment

Relief for Storm Victims; Information Offered.

More rain failling today and tonight. Be safe. Information on emergency preparedness is at www.fairfaxcounty.gov/emergency/ or through county's office of public affairs at 703-324-3187, TTY 703-324-2935, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. And with all of this moisture and the promise of more to come, the county has issued a press release with helpful information about mold, mildew and fungi. Fairfax and the Red Cross will open an emergency shelter from noon to 8 p.m. today at Edison High School, 5801 Franconia Rd., Alexandria for residents of the Arlington Terrace section of the county who have been evacuated because of localized flooding. Those affected by flooding should seek higher ground or go to the shelter using exits 12 and 14 at the school. Animals are accepted. Residents should not return home until the county has inspected homes and given the OK. Residents can call 703-817-7771 for updates in English and Spanish....

By | June 26, 2006; 11:04 AM ET | Email a Comment

Dangerous Drivers Targeted; Does It Do Good?

This happens every time a holiday comes up, and the population of speeders and aggressive drivers just seems to grow. Will this time help? Today's Metro section reports that 90 law enforcement agencies in Virginia, Maryland, the District of Columbia and Pennsylvania will be targeting speeders and aggressive drivers this summer as part of the Smooth Operator Program. The public safety program steps up enforcement in four-week waves when officers are redeployed to target areas where violations are most frequent....

By | June 23, 2006; 11:00 AM ET | Email a Comment

County Wants BRAC to Disperse Belvoir Traffic

What would the county do with as many as 22,000 more people at Ft. Belvoir by 2011? Today's Metro section, addresses the plans and a meeting--part of the federal base realignment and closure (BRAC). County types think this could aggravate the overloaded traffic congestion in southern Fairfax County. Consultants for the relocation suggest the plan could add 17,000 cars to roads around and into the base. County leaders want the Army to consider dispersing personnel by scattering buildings to other areas. The Army decision is due next month....

By | June 23, 2006; 10:34 AM ET | Email a Comment

New HOV and Hybrid Rules In Effect July 1

Traveling the HOV lanes in Virginia...remember, two new wrinkles as of July 1. Fines for HOV violators go up--first time offense costs $125 and a second $250. Also, hybrid and other clean fuel vehicles not registered will not be allowed on the I-95 HOV lanes from 6 a.m. to 9 a.m. or from 3:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. They can still use other HOV lanes. FYI, according to VDOT, the following vehicles qualify for a clean special fuel license plate: Toyota Prius, Honda Insight, Honda Civic, 2005 Ford Escape, 2006 Ford Escape, 2006 Toyota Highlander, 2006 Lexus RX400, 2006 Mercury Mariner, 2007 Camry Hybrid and the 2007 Lexus GS450H....

By | June 22, 2006; 1:08 PM ET | Email a Comment

Weekend Metro Track Work = Delays

Riding Metrorail's Orange Line this weekend? Trains will share one track between Ballston-MU and East Falls Church-VT/UVA because of track maintenance. Those traveling on this part of the Orange Line should add 15 to 20 minutes to their trip....

By | June 22, 2006; 12:58 PM ET | Email a Comment

Falls Church's Cpl. Andy D. Anderson Dies in Iraq

Today's Metro section reports that after returning to Iraq from a home leave last month, Army Cpl. Andy D. Anderson was killed. Anderson, assigned to the Army's 46th Engineer Battalion based at Fort Rucker, Ala., was building a baracks when his camp in Ramadi, 60 miles west of Baghdad, was hit by a mortar round. The wake to honor Anderson drew a crowd of 500, who graduated from J.E.B. Stuart High School in 2001....

By | June 22, 2006; 12:38 PM ET | Email a Comment

New Wilson Bridge Span = Traffic Backups

Today's Fairfax Extra, reports motorists find the new Wilson Bridge span causes more traffic tie-ups than the old one. Is that possible? To those traveling to and from Virginia and Maryland over the Potomac River, the new bridge is in stark contrast to the old one. But looks aren't everythign. Traffic may get worse beforeit gets better. The next "stay away" weekend is from 8 p.m. Friday, July 14, to 5 a.m. Monday, July 17, when I-95 south traffic is scheduled to be switched to the new bridge....

By | June 22, 2006; 12:19 PM ET | Email a Comment

Fairfax Ranks High in Hispanic-Owned Businesses

The county is prime or hispanic-owned big business. A story in today's Fairfax Extra, Hispanic Business Magazine's 2006 rankings show Fairfax ahead of 42 states in the magazine's ranking of top Hispanic-owned businesses, ranked by 2005 revenue. They include MVM Inc.; Geologics Corp.; Tessada & Assoc.; Kfoury Construction Group Inc.; Priority One Services Inc.; BRTRC Inc.; Computing Technologies Inc.; Preferred Systems Solutins Inc.; Kemron Environmental Services Inc.; Engineering, Management & Integration Inc.; Cairo Corp.; and MAC Aerospace Corp. The companies represent everything from cleaning and construction to technology, defense, engineering and accounting....

By | June 22, 2006; 11:48 AM ET | Email a Comment

CIA's Tenet Joins Fairfax Firm

Today's Business section reports that former CIA director George J. Tenet, former chief information officer for the CIA Alan Wade and former CIA intelligence analyst John P. Young have joined the Analysis Corporation's (TAC) advisory board. The Fairfax-based intelligence and contracting company advises the federal government on potential terrorist threats....

By | June 22, 2006; 11:28 AM ET | Email a Comment

Hyland Helped Developer With Tax Break

Have you followed the easement issue? What do you think? Focus on Fairfax posted this item about a court case in which a developer's conservation easement was declared invalid. Sunday's Metro section reports that Supervisor Gerald W. Hyland (D-Mt. Vernon) aided the developer in seeking federal tax write-offs that went with the easement....

By | June 19, 2006; 10:41 AM ET | Email a Comment

Inside Your Fairfax Extra

Each Thursday you can find the print edition of the Fairfax Extra tucked inside the Home section of the Washington Post anywhere newspapers are sold or delivered in the county. It has regular features, recent home sales and crimes reports from your neighborhood, a monthly look at what new projects developers have in store, religion and health notes, arts and entertainment and sports listings and stories, as well as your letters to the editor and guest opinion columns--if you write them--and much more....

By | June 15, 2006; 2:22 PM ET | Email a Comment

Traffic Stop Leads To Weapons and Drugs Caches

Here are the details from Monday's brief about the routine traffic stop near Chantilly that eventually led to the arrest of two Centreville men who were charged with multiple drug and weapons offences....

By | June 15, 2006; 2:04 PM ET | Email a Comment

Hotline Aims To Find Teen Drinking Parties

Comments? Fairfax County police have brought back their Shut It Down hotline for a second summer season to allow anonymous tipsters to report parties where minors are consuming alcohol. The Fairfax Extra has the story....

By | June 15, 2006; 1:46 PM ET | Email a Comment

Planners Use 9/11 Lessons For Disaster Prep

Today's Fairfax Extra explains how volunteer coordinators and public safety planners are using the lessons learned from 9/11 to put disaster plans in place on the local level. Read about it here....

By | June 15, 2006; 1:41 PM ET | Email a Comment

Connolly Adds Complaint on Homeland Security Cuts

The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors chairman said he suspected that the recent decision to give Washington-area jurisdictions less money to combat terrorism was guided by political considerations rather than by genuine risk-assessments. The Metro section artilce is here....

By | June 15, 2006; 11:00 AM ET | Email a Comment

Langley High Yearbook Photo Scissored for Offense

The picture, slightly larger than a postage stamp and showing a snow sculpture of a giant phallus rising from the bed of a pickup truck, was trimmed from more than 1,600 copies of the school's 2005-2006 yearbook. Read the story here....

By | June 15, 2006; 10:46 AM ET | Email a Comment

55 Illegal Immigrants Arrested in Dulles Airport Raid

55 undocumented workers at a construction site at Dulles International Airport were arrested yesterday according to this article from today's Metro section. All Latinos, most were sent to Texas to face deportation proceedings....

By | June 15, 2006; 10:34 AM ET | Email a Comment

Survey Outlines Student Behavior in County

The 2005 Fairfax County Youth Survey found that fewer students are drinking and smoking, but that use of inhalants is up and that local young people say they are depressed more often than the national average. Read about it in this article from today's Metro section....

By | June 14, 2006; 10:20 AM ET | Email a Comment

More Drilling Urged in Tunnel Study

From today's Metro section: Additional underground boring needs to be done to determine whether a Metro tunnel underneath Tysons Corner would be feasible, said the head of a panel convened to assist Virginia officials in deciding whether the planned Metro extension to Dulles International Airport should run above or below ground in Tysons. Panel chairman Robert S. O'Neil, an engineering consultant based in Potomac, said in a conference call with reporters yesterday that the additional soil analysis could be completed in time for the panel's report to the state, which is due in late July. Virginia Secretary of Transportation Pierce R. Homer asked a national engineering group to convene the panel to help him settle a deep disagreement among members of the Dulles rail project over how to build the four-mile Tysons portion. The contractors for the project say a tunnel would be prohibitively expensive. Fairfax County leaders, Tysons landowners...

By | June 13, 2006; 2:34 PM ET | Email a Comment

Large, Eco-Friendly Fire Station Opens

From today's Metro section: Fairfax County's newest and largest fire station opened yesterday on Lee Highway near the County Government Center. Station 40, at the intersection of Legato Road, just east of Costco Plaza, began responding to calls at 7 a.m. The station covers more than 24,000 square feet, sits on about six acres and has five drive-through bays. In addition to 75 firefighters on three shifts, a hazardous materials unit will be assigned there. A grand opening has been scheduled for July 8. The station is the first "green," or environmentally friendly, county building and uses energy-efficient heating and cooling, natural lighting, reflective roofing, recycled and non-toxic materials and a biological retention pond. The station was estimated to cost slightly more than $6 million....

By | June 13, 2006; 2:31 PM ET | Email a Comment

Local Governments Prepare For Shutdown, If....

Virginia leaders say a state budget deal is near, but local governments are not taking chances, preparing for a government shutdown should funds run out....

By | June 13, 2006; 10:23 AM ET | Email a Comment

Dental Care Options Scarce for Homeless

For some of the nearly 2,000 homeless people living in Fairfax County, the lack of opportunities for dental care is a painful reality. The story was in today's Metro section....

By | June 12, 2006; 11:16 AM ET | Email a Comment

New Wilson Bridge Helping Rush Hour

Let us know if the reports are correct. Reports this morning indicate that traffic was moving well, if sometimes a bit slowly, across the first span of the new Woodrow Wilson Bridge. Read about the successful opening of the bridge in this article from this morning's Metro section....

By | June 12, 2006; 10:44 AM ET | Email a Comment

HOV Violators Target of Police Crackdown

Anyone who flouts Virginia's rules for high occupancy vehicle lanes is the target in what police say will be an aggressive enforcement campaign. The story is in today's Metro section....

By | June 9, 2006; 10:15 AM ET | Email a Comment

Fairfax Crime Briefs

From today's Metro section: Man Abducted, Robbed A Centreville man was abducted at gunpoint outside his apartment early yesterday, forced to drive to an ATM and withdraw cash, then ordered into the trunk of his car and driven a short distance before being released, Fairfax County police said. The 24-year-old victim was returning to his home in the 6200 block of Ridge Pond Road in the Centre Ridge neighborhood about 1 a.m. Police said the robber demanded the man's money, forced the man back into his 1998 Lexus ES 300 sedan and made him withdraw cash from an ATM. Next, police said, the victim was ordered into the trunk while the robber drove. The gunman entered Interstate 66 heading east and drove about 12 miles. He then pulled over near the ramp to the Capital Beltway to let the victim out of his car and drove off. The victim, who...

By | June 9, 2006; 9:59 AM ET | Email a Comment

Inside Your Fairfax Extra

Each Thursday you can find the print edition of the Fairfax Extra tucked inside the Home section of the Washington Post chock full of regular features, recent home sales and crimes reports from your neighborhood, a monthly look at what new projects developers have in store, religion notes, arts and entertainment and sports listings and stories, as well as your letters to the editor and guest opinion columns--if you write them--and much more....

By | June 8, 2006; 11:29 AM ET | Email a Comment

Officials Unlikely to Use Growth Control Measures

Some Northern Virginia officials say that they are unlikely to make us of a few new tools state legislators have provided for slowing development. Read what they have to say in this Fairfax Extra article....

By | June 8, 2006; 11:25 AM ET | Email a Comment

Courthouse Expansion Completion Set for Spring

Two months behind schedule, the $115.7 million dollar expansion of the county's main courthouse is schedule to be completed in the spring of next year. A Fairfax Extra story on the project is here....

By | June 8, 2006; 10:38 AM ET | Email a Comment

Wilson Bridge Woes This Weekend

Stay away. That is the message from officials at the Woodrow Wilson Bridge project for drivers this weekend. The shifting of traffic from the old bridge to the first span of the new one could cause Beltway delays up to four hours and significant delays on other alternate routes. A story on what to expect is on the front page of today's Washington Post. For a 360 degree look at the bridge, look here....

By | June 8, 2006; 10:12 AM ET | Email a Comment

$150 Million Bond Referendum Set For November

What do you think of this? The county Board of Supervisors will put this question to the voters on the Nov. 7 election ballot: Should the county sell $150 million dollars in bonds to pay for renovations and more security for police and fire stations, to expand the county animal shelter and to add synthetic turf to athletic fields? Metro section coverage of the board action is here.. There are a couple of questions here and plenty of room for observations....

By | June 6, 2006; 10:14 AM ET | Email a Comment

Fairfax's World Champion Swimmer Feels Pressure

For Kate Ziegler of Great Falls, the country's number one freestyle distance swimmer, the stresses of sudden celebrity, finishing high school, selecting a college (GMU) training, traveling and inking an endorsement deal have been taking their toll. Today's Sports section takes a look at Ziegler's reality as she faces the next stage of her swimming career....

By | June 5, 2006; 1:02 PM ET | Email a Comment

Falls Church Lawyer to Challenge Connolly?

With their sites set on the Chairman of the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors' seat, Republican leaders are asking longtime Falls Church lawyer and former Nixon administration official Gary H. Baise to consider running as a the GOP candidate to oppose Democratic incumbent Gerald E. Connolly in next year's election. The Metro section article from today is here....

By | June 5, 2006; 12:44 PM ET | Email a Comment

Conservation Easement Tax Break Nixed by Court

In 1999 a real estate company promised not to overly develop land the company owned near George Washington's Historic Mount Vernon estate. In return for the conservation easement the company claimed hundreds of thousand of dollars in tax deductions. Last month the U.S. Tax Court ruled that the land, on which the company had erected 29 large houses, was not eligible for the deduction because the easement "did not protect open space or a historically important land area." A front page Washington Post story from yesterday is here. This is the first time that a court had thrown out such a deduction and the decision is seen as an important one in light of the increasing popularity of conservation easements which are favored by historic and environmental preservation groups and seen by many investors as an attractive way to ease their tax burdens....

By | June 5, 2006; 12:17 PM ET | Email a Comment

Fisher Columnizes on Parenting, Mental Illness

What if any culpability do the parents of Michael W. Kennedy have in the deaths of two Fairfax County police officers who died last month when Kennedy opened fire on a police station in Chantilly? In an opinion column this weekend, Marc Fisher wrote about the challenges that parents face finding help for mentally ill adult children who have not exhibited any overtly threatening behaviors....

By | June 5, 2006; 12:08 PM ET | Email a Comment

Safety Reviewed at Police, Fire, Sheriff's Buildings

When Michael W. Kennedy staged the ambush at the Sully district police station that killed two police officers last month, he was able to drive directly into the station's back parking lot; a gate that should have prevented him driving into the lot was not working. Now county officials are asking a committee to examine the policies and procedures for security buildings that house public safety operations. The story was in yesterday's Metro section....

By | June 5, 2006; 11:58 AM ET | Email a Comment

Parkway Widening, Carpool Lanes Proposed

From Saturday's Metro section: The Fairfax County Parkway would be widened from four lanes to six between Route 50 and the Dulles Toll Road under a proposal made by county officials that also calls for the possibility of restricting the additional lane to carpools. Fairfax officials said funds are available for design and environmental studies, but not construction. County officials will discuss the proposal from 5 to 8 p.m. Wednesday at Oak Hill Elementary School, 3210 Kinross Cir. in Herndon. A presentation by county staff at 6 p.m. will be followed by questions and answers. -- Bill Turque...

By | June 5, 2006; 11:54 AM ET | Email a Comment

Beltway Closures This Weekend

Weekend travellers should check out this story for information on how the opening of the first span of the Woodrow Wilson bridge and other construction will affect traffic this and subsequent weekends....

By | June 2, 2006; 10:02 AM ET | Email a Comment

County Identifies Land For Affordable Housing

Officials have identified 18 areas of county owned land suitable for building affordable housing for middle class workers that have been shut out of the expensive housing market. Read the story here....

By | June 2, 2006; 9:50 AM ET | Email a Comment

Five of Our High Schools Among Nation's Best

Updated 6/1 Columnist Jay Mathews drew the curtain back on the history of the Challenge Index that the Post and Newsweek use to rank high schools in today's Fairfax Extra. Originally posted 5/4 Five high schools from the Falls Church and Fairfax County public school systems were among the 13 in the Washington area named in Newsweek magazine's top 100 schools in the country. The schools were George Mason High School, Langley High School, McLean High School, W.T. Woodson High School, and Centreville High School....

By | June 1, 2006; 12:21 PM ET | Email a Comment

Inside Your Fairfax Extra

Each Thursday you can find the print edition of the Fairfax Extra tucked inside the Home section of the Washington Post anywhere newspapers are sold or delivered in the county. It has regular features, recent home sales and crimes reports from your neighborhood, a monthly look at what new projects developers have in store, religion notes, arts and entertainment and sports listings and stories, as well as your letters to the editor and guest opinion columns--if you write them--and much more....

By | June 1, 2006; 12:11 PM ET | Email a Comment

County Forms Committee on Aging

According to this Fairfax Extra article a new committee formed by the county Board of Supervisors is examining the ways that the government may be able to help with the problems that are likely to come as a higher percentage of citizens begin to reach retirement age....

By | June 1, 2006; 11:43 AM ET | Email a Comment

Absentee Voting Open Through June 10

From today's Metro section: Fairfax County registered voters can cast ballots for the June 13 Democratic and Republican primaries at the county Government Center through June 10, election officials said yesterday. The county Office of the General Registrar said it would offer in-person absentee voting in Suite 323 of the Government Center, 12000 Government Center Pkwy. Residents may vote from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. weekdays or 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. the next two Saturdays, June 3 and 10. Because the county fair, called Celebrate Fairfax!, will be June 9-10 on the Government Center grounds, county officials and the Office of the General Registrar said, they have made special arrangements to accommodate voters on those dates. On June 13, voters in the 8th, 10th and 11th congressional districts will help choose a Democratic candidate for the U.S. Senate. In addition, voters in the 11th District will select a Democratic...

By | June 1, 2006; 10:57 AM ET | Email a Comment

Police Seek Help In Pair of Bank Robberies

From today's Metro section: Fairfax County police believe the same man robbed two BB&T bank branches last month, and yesterday they released a photo of the man wielding a handgun in one of the holdups. The first robbery happened May 9 at the BB&T branch at 7000 Bland St. in Springfield. The armed man demanded money from one teller, was given cash and fled, police said. A similar holdup occurred May 11 at the branch at 7393-A Lee Highway in the Falls Church area, though the gunman received cash from two tellers in that incident. No shots were fired and no one was hurt in either robbery. Police said this man robbed BB&T branches in Springfield and the Falls Church area. (Fairfax County Police Department) Police described the gunman as a white man in his twenties, between 5 feet 5 and 5 feet 8 inches tall, weighing about 130 pounds....

By | June 1, 2006; 10:24 AM ET | Email a Comment

 

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