Stories for August 2020

Stories for August 2020


Friday, August 28

Opinion: Commentary: Reforecasted Budget Progressing

The General Assembly is meeting virtually this week and next week in a special session necessary to revise the budget due to the pandemic and the need to implement election law changes in time to take effect prior to the November general election.

Opinion: Commentary: Honoring Women in 2020 on the Centennial of the Adoption of the 19th Amendment

This week we celebrate 100 years of women earning the right to vote.

Opinion: Commentary: Special Circumstances for Special Session

On Tuesday, the General Assembly returned to Richmond for a Special Session called by Gov. Ralph Northam to revisit the biennial budget following the release of updated revenue forecasts due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Thursday, August 27

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Back-to-School Doesn’t Have the Same Ring To It This Year

West Potomac gets ready with laptops and virtual lessons.

West Potomac

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Baking For Social Issues Sprouts in Alexandria

Sales from teen’s baked goods raise funds to fight racial injustices.

Racial Justice Bake Shop

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Automated Justice?

Lawmakers to consider automatic expungements for misdemeanors.

Virginia is one of 10 states that offers almost no way for people convicted of misdemeanors to expunge their records, creating roadblocks for people trying to get a job or rent an apartment. Even when a jury finds defendants in Virginia not guilty or when prosecutors dropped charges, allegations remain on records as a stain that can cause problems for years to come. That’s why lawmakers are about to consider a proposal from the Virginia Crime Commission on automatic expungement, which is expected to be released early next week.

Opinion: Column: The Doggone Truth

I don't remember much substance from my freshman-level psychology 100 class at the University of Maryland in 1972 except that the lecture hall sat approximately 600 students, tests were graded on a bell curve (with which I was totally unfamiliar), the professor always wore black leather pants, and he brought his dog to every lecture.

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Outrage Over Comments by Trustee on Fairfax County Library Board

Local organizations, unions and faith-based groups call for his removal.

In the aftermath of public concern following comments made by appointed Trustee Phillip Rosenthal (Springfield District) during the July 29 public meeting of the Fairfax County Library Board of Trustees, NOVA Equity Agenda Coalition sent a letter on Aug. 20 to Jeffrey McKay, Chairman of the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors and Fran Millhouser, Chair of the Fairfax County Library Board of Trustees.

Fairfax County Fire Chief Honored

Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department (FCFRD) Fire Chief John Butler has been selected as a recipient of the 2020 International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC) President’s Awards of Recognition.

For Seniors, Love Is Not Cancelled

This region is a prime location for meeting and dating other single seniors.

A 67-year-old widower, who lives in Old Town, met a woman who is divorced and 65 on eHarmony.

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A Migration Miracle Is Underway

Small efforts can help monarch butterflies.

Bright orange and black butterflies are zigging and zagging through Northern Virginia in September and October headed south, the migration of monarch butterflies.

Free Help for Grocery Shopping and Pharmacy Pickup; Fairfax Area Neighbor to Neighbor and Village Programs

The Fairfax County Neighbor to Neighbor (N2N) Shopping Program just served its 100th resident!

Friday, August 21

Mount Vernonite Mary Thompson Wins Top Book Award

The Society for Historians of the Early American Republic is proud to announce the following winners of the 2020 book, article, and dissertation prizes.

Opinion: Commentary: Legislating in the Time of COVID-19

This week, I returned with my colleagues to Richmond to revise the Commonwealth’s budget in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, pass pandemic-related legislation, and to address the twin issues of racial inequity and police reform.

Fort Hunt Flag Football for High School Players

The flag football program for kids 13 years and younger is now joined by a high school 7-vs-7 non-contact league for kids 14-to-18 years of age.

March Saturday in Mount Vernon

Northern Virginia Community and Friends United march for justice, peace, equality and education and Black Lives Matter, Saturday, Aug. 22.

Thursday, August 20

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Groundbreaking Scheduled for Lorton Library Renovation

Library will be co-located with the Lorton Community Action Center.

Library Groundbreaking

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Trailer Park Residents Speak Out About Being Priced Out

Hybla Valley residents oppose mixed use plans.

Hybla Valley

Opinion: Column: Narratively Speaking

After 11 years and almost exactly six months since being diagnosed with stage IV, non-small cell lung cancer, the party is apparently over.

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Governor Northam Signs Protection Bills For Dogs

Virtual ceremony held

In a signing ceremony, held virtually, and streamed from his State Capitol office, Governor Ralph Northam officially signed stronger protections for tethered dogs into law on Aug. 17.

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Distance Learning for Children with ADHD

Decreasing stress and increasing success in a virtual classroom

Voncia Hartley and her 10-year old son Kelvin are dreading the first day of school this year.

Wednesday, August 19

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Reforming the Police

Lawmakers consider sweeping set of proposals to change policing in Virginia.

Only a few hours into a special session of the General Assembly earlier this week, members of a Senate panel passed a sweeping bill on policing reform that does everything from banning no-knock warrants and limiting chokeholds to creating use-of-force standards and requiring de-escalation training.

Saturday, August 15

Opinion: Letter to the Editor: No to Belle View Shopping Center Redevelopment Proposal

The Belle View Shopping Center is located in a Community Planning Sector, a Suburban Neighborhood, according to Fairfax County.

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Celebrate Women’s Suffrage Month at Workhouse Arts Center in Lorton

Drive-in movies, Girl Scout virtual event and Suffrage art exhibit planned for August.

With the upcoming Centennial of the Ratification of the 19th Amendment guaranteeing women the right to vote in the United States, the Workhouse Arts Center is holding special Thursday evening Drive-In movies, a Girl Scout Gold Award Project virtual event and a suffrage-related art exhibit, all planned for the month of August.

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Opinion: Commentary: August COVID-19 Update

Cases here in Northern Virginia have remained steady on a downward trend; the same cannot be said about the rest of the country.

As we head deeper into summer, I wanted to provide you with the latest news with respect to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Friday, August 14

A Life Well-Lived, Not Long Enough

Dave Evans devoted his time to help schools, athletic associations and needs-based organizations; helping the neediest, youngest and hungriest.

With deep sadness, I have to share the news of the sudden loss of one of our finest community members, Dave Evans.

Thursday, August 13

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Mount Vernon Get-a-Way

Huntley Meadows Park offers solitude from the pandemic and rhetoric.

Mount Vernon Get-a-Way

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Emergencies with Autistic People Now Have ’Adrian’s Resource Care Kits’

Alexandria teen’s Eagle Scout project now part of Fairfax County Rescue squads’ toolkit.

Adrian's Resource Kits

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School Supply Drive in Two Phases This Year?

Home schooling may be the only way this year.

School Supply Drive

Wednesday, August 12

EagleForce Warrior Foundation Donates $30K

Funds launch Capital Caring Health's ‘So No One Dies Alone Program.’

The local nonprofit provider of elder health, hospice and advanced illness care, Capital Caring Health, received a $30K donation from EagleForce Warrior Foundation to launch the provider's 'So No One Dies Alone Program' for Veterans from Northern Virginia and nearby areas and their families.

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Black Interior Designers on Industry’s Lack of Inclusion and Diversity

Local tastemakers speak honestly about racial barriers within the profession.

As recent racial injustice protests have brought issues of diversity and inclusion to the forefront of the nation’s consciousness, local interior designers of color are voicing concerns about equity and underrepresentation within the industry.

Moving Fairfax County Schools to Dismantle Systemic Racism

NAACP holds virtual Town Hall.

Fairfax County NAACP held a virtual Town Hall on Wednesday, Aug. 5.

OrthoVirginia Moves to New Offices in Northern Virginia

OrthoVirginia has relocated offices in Northern Virginia.

Saturday, August 8

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Electrical Event Cause of Fort Hunt House Fire

Saturday, Aug. 1, at approximately 11:25 a.m., units from the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department and the City of Alexandria Fire Department were dispatched for a reported house fire in the 2100 block of Rampart Drive in the Fort Hunt area of Fairfax County.

Opinion: Commentary: Paid Sick Leave

The safest way to avoid COVID-19 right now is to stay apart, especially if we are sick, even just a little sick.

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Inova Mount Vernon Hospital Celebrates Academic Achievements of their Team Members

Formal ceremonies were nixed by the pandemic, but that didn’t hide the smiles.

On Monday, Aug. 3, Inova Mount Vernon Hospital celebrated the academic achievements of team members who were unable to ‘walk’ this year due to COVID-19.

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Restoring Ecological Function to Fairfax County Properties

On a recent 90-plus-degree sunny day, the narrow-leaf mountain mint outside Supervisor Dan Storck’s window at the Mount Vernon Government Center was literally buzzing.

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Mount Vernon Lee Chamber Renews Army Community Covenant

A group of community leaders met with Colonel Michael Greenberg, Commander, US Army Fort Belvoir, to renew the Army Community Covenant on Wednesday, July 29, at Mount Vernon Country Club.

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Restore Our Parks Act Could Create 10,340 Jobs

The president signed the Great American Outdoors Act into law this week, a bill championed by U.S. Sen. Mark R. Warner (D-VA).

Thursday, August 6

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Lake Braddock Seventh Grader Makes a Giant Step for Mankind

Alexander Mather wins the contest to name Mars rover and witnesses the lift off.

Mars Rover Named

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Dangling Liberty

Lawmakers to consider putting pretextual stops in the rearview mirror.

Do you have a parking pass dangling from your rearview mirror? What about rosary beads or a graduation tassel? Police officers can use that as a pretext to pull you over and ask to search your car.

Opinion: Column: Safeguarding My Future

Whether or not I'm certain about my attitude toward being a dual cancer threat (non small cell lung and papillary thyroid, cancer), only my subconscious knows for sure.

Fairfax County Park Authority to Honor Six Volunteers

The Fairfax County Park Authority will honor six individuals and groups with 2020 Elly Doyle Park Service Special Recognition Awards at a virtual volunteer celebration in November.

AAUW of Virginia Holds Summer Leadership Meeting

A record number of Virginia members of the American Association of University Women, a national advocate for women’s equity, attended their annual Summer Leadership Meeting on July 25, 26, and 27.

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Back-to-School Vaccinations Required, Even with Distance Learning

Free vaccine clinics are designed to help ensure that all children are vaccinated.

While there’s a cloud of uncertainty over what the back-to school season will look like this year, one thing is certain: children still need to be vaccinated.

Wednesday, August 5

Senior Year Unlike Any Other

Recent high school grads, Class of 2021 face college uncertainty amid pandemic.

Senior year, 2020 T.C. Williams graduate Mikaela Pozo applied to 17 colleges.

Max Scherzer Signs Baseball for Women’s Education Fundraiser

There is an opportunity to own a baseball signed by Nationals pitcher Max Scherzer with “2019 World Series Champs!” and at the same time support women’s and girl’s education.

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Gap Between Relief Funds, Eviction Moratorium Could Cause Mass Evictions in Fairfax County

Slow: 12,000 eviction cases in courts statewide while only 300 tenant households had received federal funds.

The expiration of the state eviction moratorium and the refusal of the Fairfax District Court to extend it locally past July 10 has sent Fairfax County legal aid attorneys and Health and Human Services Department staff into a flurry of action to try to get federal assistance to the 500 tenants currently on the docket for eviction proceedings.

Opinion: Commentary: Creating More Equitable Admissions Policies for Magnet Schools

We need more equitable admissions practices in what are called “Governor’s Schools.”

Tuesday, August 4

Opinion: Commentary: The Path to Marijuana Legalization

The prohibition of marijuana in America has clearly failed.