Archive: October 2006

County Schools See Some Gains in Effort to Close Achievement Gap

Fairfax County schools officials have seen some gains and some mixed results in their effort to close the achievement gap between black and white students, according to new data from the state. Read about it here....

By Focus on Fairfax | October 27, 2006; 9:47 AM ET | Email a Comment

Charities Prepare for Busy Holiday Season

With Thanksgiving fast approaching, Northern Virginia's charitable organizations are preparing for their busiest time of the year. Read about it in today's Fairfax Extra....

By Focus on Fairfax | October 26, 2006; 2:16 PM ET | Email a Comment

Fairfax Symphony Celebrates 50 Years of Music

The cover story in today's Fairfax Extra features a look at the history of the regional orchestra which, a year ago, was foundering....

By Focus on Fairfax | October 26, 2006; 2:09 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 (check out the the $old list of the highest priced homes) and crimes reports from your neighborhood, a monthly look at what new projects developers have in store, restaurant reviews, religion notes, volunteer opportunities, health briefs, 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 Focus on Fairfax | October 26, 2006; 1:44 PM ET | Email a Comment

Local Officials Voice Concern Over Electronic Balloting

This article from this morning's Metro section describes the concern that some elected officials have about the integrity of computerized voting systems. They say they would like to see Virginia enact a law that would require printed verification after electronic ballots were cast....

By Focus on Fairfax | October 26, 2006; 8:04 AM ET | Email a Comment

FBI Relocates Tysons Offices to Prince William

Citing cheaper land and a more secure location as reasons for the move, FBI officials said they should have their new Prince William headquarters ready in about 13 months. Read about it here....

By Focus on Fairfax | October 25, 2006; 10:00 AM ET | Email a Comment

New Buildings, Exhibits Open Friday at Mount Vernon

Check out this front page story about the multi-million dollar makeover at one of the county's star attractions....

By Focus on Fairfax | October 24, 2006; 9:11 AM ET | Email a Comment

Connolly Denounces Virginia Speaker For Comments

This article from this morning's Metro section reports that Fairfax County Board of Supervisor's Chairman Gerald E. Connolly yesterday denounced Virginia House of Delegates Speaker William J. Howell for suggesting that Fairfax was wealthy enough to pay its own way for daycare programs for the working poor without help from the state....

By Focus on Fairfax | October 24, 2006; 9:05 AM ET | Email a Comment

Beltway HOT Lanes Could Require $100 Million in Public Funds

Rising cost estimates for the plan to build express toll lanes on a 14 mile stretch of the Beltway now has the plan's private backers saying they won't be able to do it alone. Read about it in this front page article from today's Washington Post....

By Focus on Fairfax | October 23, 2006; 9:15 AM ET | Email a Comment

A Military Main Street

This article from yesterday's Metro section about Fort Belvoir's new town center, shows us just how ubiquitous the urban planning concept has become....

By Focus on Fairfax | October 23, 2006; 9:11 AM ET | Email a Comment

Poll Results Show Northern Virginians Support Local Taxes For Roads

The results of a Washington Post transportation survey show that 76 percent of Northern Virginians would support a plan that included local taxes to solve local transportation problems. Read about it here....

By Focus on Fairfax | October 19, 2006; 11:09 AM ET | Email a Comment

Korean Senior Center a Popular Draw

The Fairfax Extra this week features a look at how a Vienna-based recreation center for Korean senior citizens is providing cultural and educational resources for as many 400 people a week from across the region....

By Focus on Fairfax | October 19, 2006; 10:55 AM ET | Email a Comment

Metrorail to Dulles Pushed Back a Year

A story in today's Metro section reports that officials with the Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation have decided to delay the start of construction of the rail line through Tysons corner until late next year or possibly early in 2008. The project manager cited a five month study of the tunnel option for the rail line as one reason for the delay....

By Focus on Fairfax | October 19, 2006; 10:51 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 (check out the the $old list of the highest priced homes) and crimes reports from your neighborhood, a monthly look at what new projects developers have in store, restaurant reviews, religion notes, volunteer opportunities, health briefs, 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 Focus on Fairfax | October 19, 2006; 10:27 AM ET | Email a Comment

South County School Boundary Study Discussion is Here

Hijacking a blog item to start a discussion thread might achieve your agenda--but it comes at the expense of others who might want to stay on point. Several readers resorted to hijack when we offered the item on the South County Secondary School's history project. That's not the way we want to run this, and we will shut down a discussion thread if it spins out of control or is hijacked. We are, though, interested in providing a forum. And we are capable of doing that without having other work corrupted, though the temptation is just to shut off hijackers. In light of evident interest in the South County Secondary School boundary study here is your opportunity to argue the merits of the various proposals offered in the study. But we have had problems with name-calling and intemperate entries on the school boundary issues before. So keep it civil; ground...

By Focus on Fairfax | October 16, 2006; 10:16 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 (check out the the $old list of the highest priced homes) and crimes reports from your neighborhood, a monthly look at what new projects developers have in store, restaurant reviews, religion notes, volunteer opportunities, health briefs, 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 Focus on Fairfax | October 12, 2006; 12:30 PM ET | Email a Comment

Nobel Laureate Showed Promise Way Back Then

"I was tickled to death," said retired Fairfax High School science teacher Randy Scott on learning that former student Craig C. Mello had been named a Nobel Prize winner for medicine. Scott's memories of Mello's days as a budding scientist and high school wrestler are reported in this week's Fairfax Extra....

By Focus on Fairfax | October 12, 2006; 12:19 PM ET | Email a Comment

SoCounty Secondary Studies Cold War, Helps Museum

Students at the South County Secondary School and organizers of the Cold War Museum (planned as part of the adaptive reuse of the former Nike missile base in Lorton) have agreed to a partnership in which the students will help to preserve personal recollections of key Cold War events. Read about it here....

By Focus on Fairfax | October 12, 2006; 12:10 PM ET | Email a Comment

Chill Winds Won't Stop Parks Activity

Fall is here, winter is whispering through the keyhole, but even as the pools are drained and campgrounds are closed, the area's parks and recreation departments have plenty of cool weather activities to keep us all busy. Today's Fairfax Extra takes a look....

By Focus on Fairfax | October 12, 2006; 11:55 AM ET | Email a Comment

Va. Chief Justice Starts Mental Health Care Reform Effort

Leroy R. Hassell Sr., the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Virginia said he wants to reform the policies that govern how the state cares for its mentally ill citizens. The story is in today's Metro section....

By Focus on Fairfax | October 11, 2006; 10:07 AM ET | Email a Comment

Ex-CIA Worker Expected to Plead Guilty to Burglaries

From today's Metro section: A former CIA employee who was arrested after a string of burglaries in the McLean area -- after which police found piles of stolen women's undergarments in his home -- waived his preliminary hearing in Fairfax County court yesterday as prosecutors said they expected him to plead guilty next month to 10 break-ins. Police arrested George C. Dalmas III, 45, at his Falls Church home Jan. 31, after a McLean woman found him in her home, chased him out and got his license plate number. When police searched his house, they found cash, stolen jewelry, antiques and bags of women's underwear, according to court records. Dalmas was charged with 17 burglaries and 16 counts of grand larceny. The CIA said Dalmas was a midlevel administrative employee who was suspended in January and later fired. In court yesterday, Fairfax Assistant Commonwealth Attorney Ian M. Rodway agreed to...

By Focus on Fairfax | October 11, 2006; 10:04 AM ET | Email a Comment

Wolf Trap Kicks Off Concert Series

The country's only national park for the performing arts celebrates its founder Catherine Filene Shouse, with a new concert series that begins Friday. Read about it here....

By Focus on Fairfax | October 10, 2006; 4:25 PM ET | Email a Comment

Allen, Webb Debate: What's Your Take?

Sen. George Allen (R-Va.) and Democratic challenger Jim Webb squared off in a televised debate last night. You have seen the debate, seen or heard radio and TV and read about this in the old fashioned newspaper or on the web. Forget all that and tell us what Focus on Fairfax readers think. How did the candidates fare? And what did the debate do for people trying to figure out whom to vote for? One thing: no ad hominem attacks....

By Focus on Fairfax | October 10, 2006; 9:57 AM ET | Email a Comment

Park Officials Dedicate Accessible Park

Clemyjontri Park, the Fairfax County Park Authority's newest park and which offers playground equipment accessible to children with disabilities, was officially dedicated yesterday. Read about it here....

By Focus on Fairfax | October 10, 2006; 9:36 AM ET | Email a Comment

From Chairman to Congressman?

Is Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Chairman Gerald E. Connolly planning to follow in the footsteps of former board Chairman Thomas M. Davis III (R) and run for a congressional seat? This Fairfax Extra article looks at the evidence so far that Connolly is laying the ground work for a run to succeed Davis as the 11th District representative should Davis pursue a spot in the U.S. Senate. Of course, Andrew Hurst is a first hurdle that Davis faces to being around then....

By Focus on Fairfax | October 6, 2006; 3:49 PM ET | Email a Comment

Fairfax City's New Police Headquarters, City Hall

Scheduled to open in December, the new police department headquarters and the addition to City Hall are the next projects headed for completion as the city continues with its 21st century makeover. The Fairfax Extra has all of the details and reporter Tom Jackman's audio/visual report is online here....

By Focus on Fairfax | October 6, 2006; 3:36 PM ET | Email a Comment

Long-Time Teacher Weighs In On Testing

Bernie Nakamura, a retired Fairfax County school teacher, said standardized testing, hailed as a solution by some, doesn't address "the main cause of student failure; the dysfunctional family." Nakamura's guest opinion column is in this week's Fairfax Extra....

By Focus on Fairfax | October 6, 2006; 3:25 PM ET | Email a Comment

Police: Street Racing Dangers Increasing

No longer limited to deserted rural roads, police say that street racing is a problem in the region. This Fairfax Extra article looks at the phenomenon and how deaths caused by the illegal sport has affected some local families....

By Focus on Fairfax | October 6, 2006; 3:19 PM ET | Email a Comment

Report: Fairfax Lost 26% of Forested Land Between 1986-1999

A report on the state of the forests in the Chesapeake Bay watershed was issued last month and contains some starling numbers. More than a fourth of Fairfax County's forested land was lost to development in the final years of the 20th century. The report also says that 100 acres of forest are lost every day in the watershed and that more than a third of the natural pollution filter that is forested land could be gone by 2030. The details are in this week's Fairfax Extra....

By Focus on Fairfax | October 6, 2006; 3:09 PM ET | Email a Comment

County Urges Voters To Remember Absentee Option

Election officials are urging citizens who may not be able to make it to the polls on Nov. 7 to remember that they can vote via absentee ballots....

By Focus on Fairfax | October 4, 2006; 9:25 AM ET | Email a Comment

Bicyclist Killed in Crash With Off-Duty Officer

This article from today's Metro section describes how, on his way to work yesterday morning, a Fairfax County Police Officer struck and killed Jose Maria Carranza Claros, 50 of the Falls Church area when Claros tried to cross Arlington Boulevard on his bicycle....

By Focus on Fairfax | October 3, 2006; 11:28 AM ET | Email a Comment

Homeless Man Says He Attacked Cyclists

David Michael Johnson, 39 said in federal court that he attacked as many as 15 bicyclists on July 10 along the Mount Vernon trail, using his own bicycle as a weapon. Here is the strange tale....

By Focus on Fairfax | October 3, 2006; 9:19 AM ET | Email a Comment

Sully Woodlands Plan Approved for Trails, Fields

The Fairfax County Park Authority board now has an approved plan in place for trails and athletic fields in the 4,400 acres that make up Sully Woodlands, one of the last undeveloped parts of the county. The news story is in today's Metro section....

By Focus on Fairfax | October 3, 2006; 9:10 AM ET | Email a Comment

Area Seems To Accomodate Snakeheads

While the scientists say that the invasive nothern snakehead indeed seems to be spreading in the Potomac and its tributaries, so far there isn't much evidence that the Asian fish is squeezing out native species like the bass. Here is the latest....

By Focus on Fairfax | October 2, 2006; 5:40 PM ET | Email a Comment

Relocated African-American Dead Are Honored

Three dozen descendants of people who were buried in a tiny Civil-War era African American graveyard, gathered on Saturday to honor their forebears. The graves, relocated last month, were nearly lost in a road-widening project....

By Focus on Fairfax | October 2, 2006; 11:36 AM ET | Email a Comment

 

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