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Look for the King George Parks & Rec Brochure Inside T he POSTAL CUSTOMER King George Volume 38, Number 4 Carlos Bell arrested in Dahlgren shooting Project Lego Mindstorm provides vision for future engineers at KGMS Leonard Banks The future of engineering is filled with possibilities! Thinking outside the box and taking the Lego building blocks a step farther, from a routine activity of play into the world of robotics, are the King George Middle School students of science teacher Patrick Simmons’ 7th grade science class. The Lego Mindstorm robotics project was conceived by the Virginia Demonstration Project (VDP) to help kids make informed decisions about careers in engineering. Under the direction of the College of William and Mary, VDP is a program developed by the Navy to increase students’ interest in STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) opportunities at school. Thrilled with the opportunity to apply their engineering skills to the program are 7th graders Noah Fields and Dillon Flowers. “Basically we have a robot that we build from instructions, and we have to program it to do certain tasks,” Flowers said. “Some of the robots we have built perform tasks such as transporting food.” Fellow classmate and Mindstorm group partner, Noah Fields, Wednesday, January 22, 2014 50 Cents helping you relate to your community embraces the aspect of teamwork, while focusing on his part of the project’s tasks. “I am getting all the stuff and information from the board, and putting it into the computer,” Fields said. “Dillon is doing all the building, and figuring out all the ideas on how to do it. For example, I have to record and count the rotations placed on the tires.” “It is the mission of the program to encourage students to take higher level math and science classes and to pursue math, science, and engineering careers in college,” Simmons said. During a two-week period, NSWC engineers and mathematicians partner with KGMS 7th grade classrooms, lending their knowledge and expertise to students as they work to solve programming and engineering Mindstorm issues. Thrilled with the opportunity to work with Simmons’ class, NSWC engineer Robert Snodgrass believes the class will provide an insight into the world of science and technology. “Basically, the program teaches what they are doing here, and what we are doing on the Navy base,” Snodgrass said. “We come in and See STEM, page 3 Richard Leggitt A shooting at the Heritage Court townhouse complex in Dahlgren has resulted in the arrest of a 25-year-old King George man. Carlos M. Bell is being held at the Rappahannock Regional Jail on charges of using a firearm in the commission of a felony and malicious wounding. Bell surrendered to King George Sheriff ’s officers without incident Wednesday, Jan. 15, after another man, who lived three doors from Bell, was shot. Officers who responded to the call found the victim suffering from multiple gunshot wounds to his upper body. King George Sheriff Steve Dempsey said officers secured the area and made it safe for medical personnel to enter. “The victim was removed King George man killed in weekend traffic accident Dillon Flowers and Noah Fields Discuss their robot’s progress. Dillon and Noah’s Robot on the right prepares to deliver an inflatable life raft to stranded sailors. Planning Commission recommends denial of rezoning in Dahlgren Phyllis Cook The King George Planning Commission last week voted unanimously to recommend that the Board of Supervisors deny a current rezoning request under consideration in Dahlgren. The case involves a request to rezone 6.75 acres on U.S. 301 (James Madison Pkwy). The Commission reconsidered the case at its meeting last week on Jan. 14. The recommendation followed lively discussion with participation by several of the ten Planning Commissioners, with comments basically distilled by those from Bill Robie and Gary Kendrick. The revised rezoning request includes amendments to the proffer statement from what was originally proposed last month, with newly-revised development plan drawings distributed. Those two documents shed light on a new proffer that would prohibit five commercial uses including repair facility, boat sales, contractors equipment yard, from the scene and transported by air to Mary Washington Hospital,” Dempsey said. “The victim is in stable condition. He was an adult male, and his name will not be released at this time in the investigation,” Dempsey said. The sheriff said the victim was lying in the doorway of his townhouse when officers arrived. Dempsey said a search warrant was issued for Bell’s residence and a vehicle on the scene. King George Sheriff ’s officers found a handgun, apparently used in the shooting, during their search. “Both the victim and the suspect were residents of the Heritage Court,” said Dempsey. The townhouse complex is located on State Route 206 in Dahlgren. Officers are continuing their investigation into the incident. Spotsylvania County Sheriff ’s officers have identified a 23-yearold man killed in a traffic accident last weekend as Steven L. Greer of King George.  Greer died in a single vehicle crash Saturday. Sheriff ’s officers said Greer was killed when the vehicle he was driving left the road and turned over several times. Greer was wearing a seatbelt, but he suffered fatal injuries in the accident impact. The accident occurred on a curve on Harrison Road Saturday night, near its intersection with Chancellor Park Drive in Spotsylvania County.   Virginia State Police are working with sheriff ’s officers to determine the cause of the crash. —Richard Leggitt Taking it to house! commercial garage, and commercial parking lot. The drawing indicates that those uses would not be prohibited on the whole parcel concerned in the request, but would only be prohibited within a narrow strip of land, termed as a “restricted area,” immediately adjacent to Bayberry subdivision lots. That restricted strip is proposed to be 223-feet wide at its widest part at the front of the property along U.S. 301, and narrowing to 132-feet at the back of the property which is the subject of the rezoning. Robie urged that ‘denial’ be recommended for the request, reading from a long list of potential commercial uses that could take place on the property and would be allowed by-right if the rezoning were to be approved by the governing body. He added that some of those uses might be pleasant to have nearby, and others not so much, adding, “It’s giving them a blank check.” Robie also said that the property appears to be listed See denial, page 3 School Board looking to raise rates for use of school facilities Phyllis Cook The King George School Board last week postponed action on a policy that would hike the cost for use of the school facilities available to the public, when school is not in session. Those include the gyms, cafeterias/kitchens, auditoriums, libraries and classrooms. An update to a School Board policy, KG-R, had first been reviewed in December, along with KG-F, which is a listing of the costs for use. When the School Board gave it a look last month, some members noted that the charges seemed low and suggested they be increased. When the draft policy was up for approval at last week’s meeting, Chairman Mike Rose suggested it be postponed to the next meeting on Jan. 27. But no direction was given as to potential amendments. The current list spells out costs for hourly use for utilities, custodial cleanup, and building supervision. It is called, “Group Utility, Housekeeping and Supervisory Costs.” The new draft revised list is termed, “Community Use Schedule of Fees.” The draft provides varying rates for rental of interior areas of the schools, with one hourly rate for non-profits and a second rate for commercial. For example, the rate for use of the high school gym or auditorium are both proposed to be priced at See facilities, page 3 Leonard Banks Foxes junior point guard, Kanysha Reynolds (#23, right) slams into Eastern View’s center, Angela Apperson, as she attempts to score in the post area. School Board budget review to begin next week Phyllis Cook The King George School Board viewed a proposed budget development timeline from Superintendent Rob Benson last week and made plans to start the budgeting process at its meeting next week. The process was discussed at the meeting on Jan. 13. Benson said he would unveil his initial draft of a proposed 2014-15 budget next week, suggesting the School Board consider setting a budget work session prior to the regular business meeting scheduled at 6 p.m. on Jan. 27. Chairman Mike Rose agreed, as that has been a regular practice by the county School Board when scheduling budget and other work sessions, as well as student discipline hearings. But the idea of an earlier meeting was quashed after new School Board member Terry Collins said he was unavailable because his work schedule generally goes until 6 p.m. Collins asked his colleagues to work with him on scheduling meetings. Rose and other members appeared chagrined that meetings earlier in the afternoon may no longer be possible. Collins’ apparent inability to schedule afternoon meetings has yet to be fully realized. Most work session meetings and discipline hearings have in the past generally been scheduled as early 4 or 5 p.m. BUDGETING TO BEGIN NEXT WEEK That first budget session is scheduled to occur during the regular business meeting on Monday, Jan. 27, with Rose saying he would try to limit the other items on that agenda. Benson said in addition to unveiling his initial budget proposal next week, two employee groups, the King George Education Association (KGEA) and a local chapter of the Virginia Professional Educators (VPE), may also present information for the School Board to consider through the upcoming budget process. BUDGET VARIABLES Benson noted a number of variables and topics that would be discussed during School Board budgeting sessions. That early information includes basing the 2014-15 budget on an average daily membership (ADM) of 4,130 students, compared to the current year’s budget which was built on 4,100 students. That number also compares to a higher student ADM figure of 4,160 students that Benson said is currently projected by the division for the end of this school year. Benson said he intends to use an ADM number of 4,130 for the budget, to split the difference. ~ VRS Benson noted that $213,406 See budget, page 3 SCHOOL BOARD PROPOSED BUDGET CALENDAR Benson provided a general budget calendar to map out the budgeting process, as follows. - Jan. 27- Feb. 4: Preliminary budget draft posted to the Budget Blog at the division’s website for public input/comment. - Feb. 4-7: Benson to hold feedback meetings at each school. - Feb.5: School Board to authorize public hearing advertisement for later in the month. - Feb. 10-24: Available timeframe for work sessions as needed. - Feb. 17: Proposed date for public hearing on the proposed budget request. - Feb. 24: School Board budget request to be submitted to the County Administrator. A date would also be expected to be finalized in early March for the School Board’s budget to be formally presented to the Board of Supervisors. Now you can follow local breaking news daily on our website at

01-22-2014 King George Va Journal

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