Falls Church News-Press 5-9-2024

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The Falls Church City Council is poised to approve a FY25 fiscal year budget at its meeting this Monday that will reduce the real estate tax by 2 cents per $100 of assessed valuation, from $1.23 to $1.21.

This will make the City of Falls Church the only jurisdiction in the region to achieve a tax reduction in the current budget cycle.

Tuesday, the neighboring Fairfax County Board of Supervisors voted 9-1 to increase the tax rate there by 3 cents, neighboring Arlington County Board members voted to increase their tax rate by 2 cents, and neighboring Alexandria moved to raise its rate by 2.5 cents.

The increases in the neighboring jurisdictions amount to an increase in the average real estate tax bill by about $450. By contrast, if the Falls Church Council goes ahead to vote a 2 cent reduction as planned, the average tax bill increase in F.C. will be about $156 in the face of increases in assessed values.

That means that those living in Falls Church will be paying taxes (starting in December) of $300 less than presently if they lived in the wider region on either side of the City.

Moreover, the Falls Church budget of $138 million for its tiny 2.2 square mile jurisdiction will be providing a full six


“We reject the view that more freedom necessarily entails less equality and community, believing instead with Alexis de Tocqueville that individualism rightly understood is perfectly compatible with community and equality.”

So remarks Robert D. Putnam, author of the bestselling “Bowling Alone,” in his new book, “The Upswing: How America Came Together a Century Ago and How We Can Do It Again.” Putnam is the principal focus of a new video

documentary, “Join or Die,” by Falls Church natives, the brother and sister team of Pete and Rebecca Davis, that drew over 200 for a viewing at the Meridian High School auditorium in Falls Church last Sunday.

The Davis sibling team, both graduates of Meridian (being known as George Mason at the time, Rebecca in the Class of ‘01 and Pete in ‘08), were on hand to introduce and take questions about their creation, which has already toured locations around the U.S. in the last year, but which not surprisingly enjoyed its biggest audience right here.

The film drew extensive applause

and an enthusiastic response to an offer by the hosts for community organizations to identify themselves in appeals for new participants, which was, after all, the primary point of it all – to get the public to come out of its shells and get more directly engaged in groups that do good work.

The idea is that engaging in groups “is good for you” in a multitude of ways, Pete Davis told the audience. “We have been in a social recession and need a revival, a moral change.”

He challenged the audience to “imagine being together differently” and to address the question, “What kind of legacy do you want to leave behind?” Representatives of groups in the audience who spoke up to identify themselves and to welcome new people to their work included Falls Church Arts, Welcome Falls Church, the Climate Action Network, the Cable Access Corporation of Falls Church, the American Association of University Women (AAUW), Citizens for a Better City, the Tinner Hill Foundation, the F.C. Homeless Shelter, F.C. Democratic Committee, the Appalachian Trail Club, the Pokemon

The City of Falls Church’s Independent, Locally-Owned Newspaper of Record, Serving N. Virginia F alls C hur C h , V irginia • www FC np C om • F ree F ounded 1991 • V ol . XXX i V n o . 13 Continued on Page 4 F.C. Davis Siblings’ Documentary Draws 200 Major Relative Savings Compared to Neighbors
F.C. Council Poised to Cut 2¢ As Budget Vote Looms May
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SUCCESS IS FOLLOWING the Meridian High School Mustangs baseball team, The ‘Stangs picked up two wins last week, defeating Warren County 3-0 with a Greiner brother effort: Luke got the win on the mound and Grant belted a home run. Ben Kozbelt successfully closed the game and James Teague had two hits. On Tuesday, April 30th the team beat Wakefield 6-3. Mason Duval (3 for 4) and Zander Greene (2 for 4) led the offense and Alessio Azimipour got the win on the mound. (Photo: Cayce Ramey) Falls Church News-Press by Nicholas F. Benton Falls Church News-Press



Meridian’s ‘Frankenstein’ Scores 6 Cappie Nominations

The Meridian High School production of ‘Frankenstein’ has impressively garnered six CAPPIE nominations, a testament to the exceptional talent and hard work of the cast and crew, who have brought this classic tale to life with a remarkable level of skill and creativity.

Nominated are the following: Best Play - Frankenstein, Best Lead Actor in a Female Role - Abby Berg, Featured Actor in a Female Role - Alexis West, Creativity - Carlos Ortiz, Composer, Sound - Jocelynn Johnson, Tyler Jones, Carlos Ortiz, Ashe Stoner, Special Effects/Technology - Millie Beaudry, Sean Cunniffe, Naomi Lewis, Carlos Ortiz.

The winners from each category will be announced on Monday, June 10th, at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts Concert Hall.

F.C. Planners Approve 12 Park Ave. Condos

The Falls Church Planning Commission last week gave a 6-1 approval for a site plan submitted by the developers of a 12-unit condominium project at the corner of Park and Oak in downtown F.C. It was the first approval provided under the modifications to the transitional zone ordinance since those changes were approved by the City Council last year.

The by-right project needed only Planning Commision approval of its site plan to proceed.

F.C. Names New Director Of Communications

Falls Church City Manager Wyatt Shields has announced the hiring of Mary Catherine Chase as the City’s new Director of Communications. Chase will join the City in this leadership position on June 17, 2024.

“I am pleased to welcome Mary Catherine Chase to the City of Falls Church team,” said Shields. “Throughout the interview process, it was clear that Chase possesses the knowledge, skills, and experience to strengthen City communications. “

Chase spearheaded the strategic communications activities at the George Washington University School of Business, where she has served as the Director of Marketing and Communications. She led in planning, developing, and executing various initiatives, including media relations and refreshing brand campaigns across websites and social media.

Chase served for seven years with the International Student Exchange Programs (ISEP) based in Arlington, where she rose from the Director of Membership for Europe and Southern United States to the Director of Communications and Strategic Partnerships. In addition, she worked for several years at the British Council of the British Embassy in Washington, D.C.

Chase earned a Master of Science in Media and Communication from the London School of Economics and Political Science and completed the Creating and Managing

Strategic Alliances Executive Course in managing strategic external partnerships from the Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University. She currently teaches a course in business leadership at GW. Maggie Redden has been serving as the Interim Director of Communications since March 1, 2024, and will continue in this role until Chase assumes office on June 17, 2024.

1st International Summit On Football CTE Set

The Mac Parkman Foundation is hosting its inaugural International Summit on Subconcussive Trauma and Brain Health on May 16-17 in Tampa, Fl.. Its primary aim is to “delve into the profound implications of subconcussive trauma across children, adults, and veterans,” with a focus on chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) in football players of all ages. Boston University’s CTE Center director Ann McKee, M.D., will be the keynote speaker.

The conference is curated to convene distinguished stakeholders from the research, medical, psychological, veteran, and legislative sectors. It seeks to spotlight cutting-edge advancements in scientific research, diagnostic techniques, and treatment modalities, aimed at ensuring critical insights are communicated effectively to the public.

Kaine, Warner Announce Affordable Housing Funding

U.S. Senators Mark R. Warner and Tim Kaine, a former fair housing attorney, this week announced $98,617,544 in federal funding for affordable housing, community development, and homelessness assistance throughout the Commonwealth. The funding is awarded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Community Development Block Grant (CDBG), HOME Investment Partnerships Program (HOME), Emergency Solutions Grant (ESG), Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS (HOPWA) Program, and Housing Trust Fund.

“No Virginian should be worried about whether they’ll have a place to sleep at night,” said the senators. “We’re glad this funding will support community development projects, improve and construct affordable housing options, and help more Virginians stay in their homes.”

Warner and Kaine have long supported efforts to increase access to affordable housing. Earlier this week, the senators announced over $55.5 million in federal funding to improve affordable housing throughout Virginia. Also this week, Kaine also cosponsored the Housing Alignment and Coordination of Critical and Effective Supportive Health Services (ACCESS) Act, legislation to address the intersecting crises of homelessness, mental health, and substance use disorder.

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percent cost of living adjustment for all City and school employees, by contrast to the difficult reductions below optimal levels that employees in the City’s surrounding jurisdictions will get.

In its final work session before adoption of its new budget that will go into effect July 1, the F.C. Council was unofficially unanimous in its determination to cut the tax rate by an extra penny beyond what was initially recommended in March by City Manager Wyatt Shields.

It meant that the majority of the three-hour session was devoted to how to achieve the $180,000 in cuts below Shields’ request that the cut of an added penny requires. In the context of the relatively new revenue sharing arrangement with the City’s School Board, the extra penny cut will be achieved by a half-cent equivalent from the City operations budget and a half-cent cut from the Schools’ budget.

Shields presented a plan for cuts on the City side that involved, primarily, the removal of a proposed new police position that was to focus on the department’s efforts to qualify for accreditation, and the removal of the plan to extend the Mary Riley Styles Public Library hours on weekends by two hours.

The Council went ahead with the plan to

remove the additional police position, based on assurances by Shields that a concerted effort can be made by the existing police staff under new Police Chief Shahram Fard to deal with the enormous amount of paperwork involved in the ongoing accreditation process.

But with other moves, such as postponing the hiring of an additional human resources person and of an additional transportation project manager, the funding for permitting the extension of the library hours on weekends, as advocated by the library’s interim director Marshall Webster Monday, was found.

Webster said the popular library has enjoyed a 21 percent increase in attendance since the pandemic, and noted it had received a “gold” rating recently from the Virginia Public Library Directors association.

“We already punch well above our weight,” he said, that others libraries the size of Falls Church’s are “much more heavily staffed.”

Council member Marybeth Connelly, just returned from a brief family vacation in China, questioned the push to find an extra penny to cut, suggesting it leaves the Schools in a lurch. She said the Schools received their budget guidance in December, and stayed within its parameters in the request it sent to the Council.

Now, however, with the Council moving

to cut an additional penny off the real estate tax rate from its revenue stream, the Schools are faced with suddenly having to come up with its share of cuts, and that is unfair to them, she suggested.

Mayor Letty Hardi said,”We have been transparent about all of this,” noting that an 8 percent revenue growth does not equal an 8 percent budget growth, and saying that she is for the 2 cent cut.

Council member David Snyder said he was “in sync” with the mayor’s thinking.

Council member Caroline Lian said she is

“optimistic” about the entire budget process.

Council member Justine Underhill again reiterated her wish the more funds could be found for the City’s arts and humanities non-profits who made petitions for more funding last week. Again, as the last time Underhill mentioned that a week ago, it fell on a silent reaction from the Council.

Vice Mayor Debbie Shantz-Hiscott said that there is “no lack of love” toward anyone in the budget, but that “we have to balance things.”

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Documentary Draws Big Crowd

Go Club, the F.C. League of Women Voters, and the F.C. Bike Club.

Putnam, who is at Harvard where Pete Davis graduated, became famous, as the documentary notes, with his “Bowling Alone” bestseller that earned him a trip to the Whiter House to be honored by then President Obama. His newer book, “Upswing”, talks about how out of greed and massive accumulation of wealth in the hands of a few during the Gilded Age in the latter half of the 19th century came the Progressive Era when Americans joined any number of civic, political and religious organizations to advocate on behalf of needed social change, not the least of which was the achievement of women’s suffrage in 1920.

The documentary highlights the 1960 inaugural address of President John F. Kennedy, when he invoked the simple concept that shaped a generation, “Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.”

That was followed by the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech of 1963 and a decade of mass, relativelyselfless service on behalf of civil rights, antiwar activism and womens and gay rights.

The Davis documentary showed labor organizer Jane F. McAlevey, author of “No Shortcuts, Organizing for Power in the New Gilded Age,” noting that in the early 1970s, there was a movement set afoot to coun-

ter the achievements of the 1960s with a promotion of a new surge of self-centered individualism. The goal was to fight social solidarity with a glorification of isolationism.

It started with references to Elks Lodges, groups like the Rochester Anti-Slavery Sewing Society, PTAs, bowling leagues, community churches and way back to the Juntos formed by Benjamin Franklin before the American Revolution that became places where folks gathered to discuss the pressing issues of the day, including in the areas of science and technology.

A revival of participation in groups is needed today to help restore trust in government, which has declined from 75 percent of Americans trusting their government down to 35 percent today, the documentary points out. Hillary Clinton is shown in the documentary noting that clubs were the “training grounds of democracy,” and form the “common bonds of community.”

Calling him “the poet laureate of civil society,” the New York Times has hailed Putnam, the Malkin Research Professor of Public Policy a Harvard and former dean of the John F. Kennedy School of Government, for his research and analysis of “how we once went from an individualistic ‘I’ society to a more communitarian ‘we’ society before we slipped back, and how we can apply lessons from that experience to become a stronger, more unified nation.”

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Biden’s Powerful Words Denouncing Anti-Semitism

Amid the campus protests flaring up across the U.S. this spring, while involving legitimate concerns of many students reacting against the slaying of innocent civilians in Gaza, the ugly specter of antisemitism is erupting at levels unseen in the U.S. since before World War 2. While many demonstrating students aren’t involved in that, still others are and their ranks are growing. As foreign bad actors are surely trying to throw fire onto these flames, it cannot be ignored that this is primarily a domestic issue.

Donald Trump deserves blame for this eruption by enabling the hatred from the radical right. We saw it in Charlottesville, Virginia, in the summer of 2017, in the first months after Trump became president, when the chants of angry white fascists was “Jews will not replace us.”

Once again, our current President Joe Biden has not shied away from taking this on directly, delivering powerful remarks at the Capital to recognize the annual Jewish Days of Remembrance of the Holocaust, or Yom HaShoah, this week. I can’t top the words that Biden spoke this week, which included the following:

“In Germany 1933, Hitler and his Nazi Party rose to power rekindling one of the oldest forms of prejudice and hate: antisemitism. This didn’t begin with mass murder; it started slowly across economic, political, social and cultural life. Propaganda demonizing Jews. Boycotts of Jewish businesses. Synagogues defaced with swastikas. Harassment of Jews in the street and the schools, antisemitic demonstrations, pogroms, organized riots. With the indifference of the world, Hitler knew he could expand his reign of terror by eliminating Jews from Germany, to annihilate Jews across Europe through genocide, the Nazis called the final solution. Concentration camps, gas chambers, mass shootings. By the time the war ended, six million Jews — one of every three Jews in the entire world — were murdered.

“This ancient hatred of Jews didn’t begin with the Holocaust. It didn’t end with the Holocaust either. Or after — even after our victory in World War II. This hatred continues to lie deep in the hearts of too many people in the world and requires our continued vigilance and outspokenness. That hatred was brought to life on October 7 of 2023. On the sacred Jewish holiday, the terrorist group Hamas unleashed the deadliest day of the Jewish people since the Holocaust. Driven by ancient desire to wipe out the Jewish people off the face of the Earth, over 1,200 innocent people, babies, parents, grandparents, slaughtered in a kibbutz, massacred at a music festival, brutally raped, mutilated and sexually assaulted.

“Thousands more carrying wounds, bullets and shrapnel from a memory of that terrible day they endured. Hundreds taken hostage, including survivors of the Shoah. Now here we are, not 75 years later, but just seven and half months later and people are already forgetting. They are already forgetting. That Hamas unleashed this terror. It was Hamas that brutalized Israelis. It was Hamas who took and continues to hold hostages. I have not forgotten nor have you. And we will not forget.

“As Jews around the world still cope with the atrocity and the trauma of that day and its aftermath, we have seen a ferocious surge of antisemitism in America and around the world. Vicious propaganda on social media. Jews forced to hide their kippahs under baseball hats, tuck their Jewish stars into their shirts. On college campuses, Jewish students are blocked, harassed, attacked while walking to class.

“Too many people denying, downplaying, rationalizing, ignoring the horrors of the Holocaust and October 7th, including Hamas’s appalling use of sexual violence to torture and terrorize Jews. It’s absolutely despicable, and it must stop. Silence and denial can hide much, but it can erase nothing. Some injustices are so heinous, so horrific, so grievous, they cannot be buried no matter how hard people try.

“We know hate never goes away; it only hides. Given a little oxygen, it comes out from under the rocks. We also know what stops hate. One thing: All of us. The late Rabbi Jonathan Sachs described antisemitism as a virus that has survived and mutated over time. Together, we cannot continue to let that happen.”

A Penny for Your Thoughts

News of Greater Falls Church

Courtrooms are curious inventions. Architecturally spare, sterile, and square, courtrooms create a hushed, almost reverential response from visitors, reinforced by bailiffs and sheriffs’ deputies should something trigger a lapse in expected demeanor. Favorite set pieces for movies and television — the balcony in “To Kill a Mockingbird,” the steamy and crowded trial in “Inherit the Wind,” the muraled courtroom for “Law and Order” come to mind — courtrooms are a fundamental component of governance, reflecting both the rule of law and respect for the law, basic tenets of our American democracy.

In reality, a courtroom is just a space — until populated with the judge, the prosecution, and defense, the defendant, the jury, witnesses, bailiffs, and visitors. It may be a set piece, but it comes alive for the human drama, whether a trial with infamous defendants, civil suit, traffic infraction, or adoption. Much of daily courtroom action doesn’t supply fodder for tabloid journalism, merely settlement of legal transgres-

sions and neglected responsibilities that attracts few reporters.

The Manhattan courtroom that Donald Trump complains is badly lit, too cold, and too old, has hosted many decades of trials, but none so scandalous as the criminal “hush money” business fraud trial of the former president. Although only the trial transcripts and sketches are available, not the actual back-andforth interrogation of witnesses, new terms — catch and kill, checkbook journalism — are riveting. The courtroom may be cleaned every evening, but no janitorial service can remove the slimy “ickiness” of the testimony offered up during the day. One wants to find the moral compass that is intended to guide people, but apparently is missing in the rarified world of the defendant and his friends.

The bottom line, of course, is the rule of law. Watching this trial play out is different than a scripted television show, where the writer already knows how the jury will decide, even if the audience doesn’t. The democratic process is at work. It’s

City of Falls Church CRIME REPORT

Week of April 29 — May 5, 2024

Reckless Driving, E Broad St, Apr 29, 2:05 PM, a male, 56, of Arlington, was arrested for Reckless Driving.

Shoplifting, W Broad St, Apr 29, 1:57 PM, two unknown suspects took merchandise without paying. One suspect is described as a Hispanic female, approximately 16-20 years of age, with long, straight, black hair, wearing black tank top, blue sweat pants and black slippers. The second is described as a Hispanic female, approximately 16-20 years of age, with a ponytail, wearing blue shirt, jean shorts, white tennis shoes, and tan backpack.

False Emergency Communication, Gordon Rd, Apr 29, 9:02 PM, a male, 62, of Fairfax County, was arrested for false emergency communication to police.

Other Jurisdiction Warrant Service, Wilson Blvd, Apr 30, 12:02 AM, a female, 36, of the City of Falls Church, was arrested on an outstanding warrant from another jurisdiction.

Assault and Battery of Family or Household Member/Simple Assault, Roosevelt Blvd, Apr 30, 11:25 AM, a male, 65, of the City of Falls Church, was arrested for Assault and

Battery of Family or Household Member and Simple Assault.

Fraud – False Pretenses, W Broad St, Apr 30, 4:42 PM, victim reported sending money after receiving a call from an unknown suspect claiming to be affiliated with their financial intuition.

Other Jurisdiction Warrant Service, Park Ave, May 1, 11:42 AM, a male, 33, of Maryland, was arrested on an outstanding warrant from another jurisdiction.

Public Intoxication/Simple Assault, S Washington St, May 1, 4:40 PM, a male, 53, of Fairfax County, was arrested for Public Intoxication and Simple Assault.

Fraud – False Pretenses, W Greenway Blvd, May 1, 5:08 PM, victim reported sending money after receiving a call from an unknown suspect claiming to be a US Marshal.

Reckless Driving, Hillwood Ave/S Washington St, May 2, 9:24 AM, a female, 57, of Fairfax County, was arrested for Reckless Driving.

Reckless Driving, Hillwood Ave, May 2, 2:08 PM, a female, 74, of Fairfax County, was arrested for Reckless Driving.

No Valid Operator’s License, Hillwood Ave, May 2, 5:37 PM, a female, 28, of

not a popularity contest and it’s not entertainment. Hundreds of years, precedents, trials and appeals have led to this point, and whatever verdict the jury hands down will be based on the law. What happens after that will depend on respect for the legal process. A “guilty” verdict certainly would be appealed, dragging out the sorry spectacle for months or years, but absolutely a prerogative of the defendant in American jurisprudence. A “not guilty” verdict is not the same as “innocent” but most likely would be trumpeted as such by the former president and his supporters.

What is ironic is that Mr. Trump loudly complains that the legal process is not fair, that his constitutional rights have been taken away from him. He should re-read the U.S. Constitution, maybe not the one reprinted in his $59.99 Bible, but the one that states, in Article III, Section 2, “The trial of all crimes, except in cases of Impeachment, shall be by jury; and such trial shall be held in the State where said crimes shall have been committed…” Those rights are further refined by Amendments V, VI, and VII, rights he swore to uphold in the Oath of Office he took on January 20, 2017. In an American courtroom, those rights are not for a few, not for some, but for everyone, including himself. God bless America!

Fairfax County, was arrested for No Valid Operator’s License.

Public Intoxication, W Broad St, May 2, 8:26 PM, a male, 58, of Fairfax County, was arrested for Public Intoxication.

Indecent Exposure, W Broad St, May 3, 12:03 AM, an unknown suspect approached the victim while at the bus stop, asked when the next bus was arriving, then exposed themselves to the victim. The suspect is described as a black male in his 20s, average build, wearing glasses, a face mask, dark-colored hooded sweatshirt and black pants.

No Valid Operator’s License, Hillwood Ave, May 3, 2:43 AM, a male, 26, of Fairfax County, was arrested for No Valid Operator’s License.

Fail to Obtain Virginia License within 60 Days, Ridge Pl, May 3, 12:50 PM, a male, 23, of Fairfax County, was arrested for Fail to Obtain Virginia License within 60 Days.

Driving Under the Influence, S. Washington St, May 3, 11:15 PM, a male, 25, of Fairfax County, was arrested for Driving Under the Influence.

Shoplifting, Hillwood Ave, May 4, 3:55 PM, an unknown suspect took merchandise without paying. The suspect is described as a black male, white beard, approximately 6’0’ in height, about 200 pounds, wearing all black, carrying an orange bag in hand.


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Are We Forgetting Something?

Reading print texts improves comprehension more than reading digital materials does, according to a new study. Researchers at the University of Valencia analyzed more than two dozen studies on reading comprehension published between 2000 and 2022, which assessed nearly 470,000 participants. Their findings suggest that print reading over a long period of time could boost comprehension skills by six to eight times more than digital reading does.

That is a stunning discovery but is the kind of thing that is rou tinely dismissed in this time because it runs so counter to the con ventional norms where everything is “trending” otherwise, much like the remarkable social dismissal of the overwhelming evidence of the brain-mangling impact of football on its participants at all levels.

Our question is this: Who is going to stand against the destructive direction that the race to digital over print is taking us? On a whole array of levels, the race to authoritarian anti-democratic social and political norms seems almost unavoidable, and who will dare acknowledge the direct connection between practices that are diminishing development of social brain power needed to move our democratic culture ahead and this?

This week another sobering indicator was derived from the journal ist Joshua Benton (no relation to our boss) of the Nieman Journalism Lab at Harvard University who noted that the trend in the awarding of Pulitzer Prizes in news reporting, as evidenced by the announcement of this year’s winners this week, has shifted dramatically away from print to online sources.

For the first time ever, he noted, online-native news sites produced more Pulitzer finalists than newspapers did, by 12 to 8. The list of this year’s winners highlighted, he wrote in an article this week, “the major ongoing shifts in American journalism: the best works of journalism are increasingly produced by just a few high-end institutions, the decline in local and regional newspapers has pushed online-native outlets to the forefront, and the work historically performed by newspapers is increasingly done by other forms of media.”


Last Thursday morning, my husband was hit by a car as we were bike riding on the W&OD Bike Trail at N. West Street, thank all the Falls Church safety personnel who were on the scene immediately and rendered aide, including Sheriff Matt Cay and Officer Fischli from the Falls Church Police. We are so lucky in the Little City to have such outstanding and caring professionals. And drivers — please stop Words of Thanks and Plea for Caution

Just a decade ago, he noted, newspapers accounted for 24 Pulitzer Prize finalists compared to one online-only entity. As recently as 2022 it was still 17 newspapers to five online outlets. The shift has taken a longer time to materialize but is now showing up in a much more dramatic result.

So, taking into account the University of Valencia study in this context, what are we to make of this from the standpoint of the direction of our society? Maybe the bigger danger of TikTok is not the way an autocratic adversary may be mining personal information from us, as it is the way the site is promoting mindlessness and the diminishment of language skills.

What are we to make of the fact that even as the data proving the deadly impact of football on its players at all age levels is more decisive than ever, it comes just as the sport is now more popular in America than ever?


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- 15, 2024
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Spotlight On Postpartum Mental Health: Recovery and Hope After Loss

For a year, Kamaljit (Kay) Aujla had been struggling to make sense of the loss of her second child. The baby, a daughter, was still-birthed, leaving Kay with emotional pain and depression.

On the one-year anniversary of the birthdate, Kay tried to end her life. With specialized help from a new program for mothers, Kay has recovered, gained insight into her condition, and is expecting her third child this fall.

Kay wanted to share her story in hopes that it might help other mothers struggling with mental health issues.

After being transported to a nearby hospital for immediate care, Kay was referred to the new Prenatal/Postpartum Mental Health Program at Reston Hospital Center. Led by mental health professionals from Dominion Hospital, the program is tailored for women experiencing mood and anxiety disorders, including postpartum depression.

“Although I had a great job and my family had moved into

our dream house, I was very depressed. All I could think about was wanting to be with the daughter I had lost. It was the lowest point of my life,” explains Kay.

Though her family understood why she was depressed, they had hoped that she would be able to move past it. “I didn’t have the strength to go on. I felt like I had failed as a woman who couldn’t deliver a healthy baby.”

Using a multi-disciplined approach, a team of mental health professionals helped Kay.

“I presented with extreme anxiety and high expectations for everyone. The very first thing they had me do was a Genogram exercise.” This exercise is like creating a family tree with a focus on relationships and patterns of behavior.

“The process helped me identify the root cause of my unhappiness. I realized I had never learned how to regulate my emotions as a child, having been raised in a difficult environment with a lot of yelling.”

Kay was seen by several practitioners and participated in group sessions as part of her outpatient treatment.

“My psychiatrist identified the right medication and taught me coping skills so I could better navigate through the process. I felt that everyone there was invested in getting me better and helping me find the cause of my anger and depression.”

The Prenatal/Postnatal Mental Health Program is designed for women who feel anxious or depressed or like something just doesn’t feel right during or after a pregnancy. Postpartum depression is the most common complication for women who have had a baby. According to the March of Dimes, it affects up to 1 in 7 women (about 15 percent.)

For many women, postpartum depression is their first time experiencing depression. Coupled with the physical and mental toll of being a new mother, the condition can make it difficult for women to care for themselves or their babies. Many women worry that feeling sadness, tiredness, or anxiety makes them bad mothers. Healthcare providers, however, know that postpartum depres -

Op. Ed: Sup. Jimenez on New Greener

Mason Initiative

across 193 countries.

My passion for environmental protection started in the West Virginia mountains as a kid. Though I was born in Bogota, Colombia, I grew up in West Virginia. My friends and I spent our summers exploring the mountains, camping and fishing. It’s an understatement to say those were different times; Our parents were happy so long as we made it home before dark, and big issues like climate change and pollution seemed far too daunting for us to tackle.

We know better now: oftentimes, the solutions to big problems lie in our own backyards. That ‘Think global, act local’ approach is at the heart of my office’s latest initiative, the Greener Mason Advisory Committee. This committee is the first of its kind in its hyper-local approach to tackling climate change. Volunteers will collaborate to find projects that can help us meet the climate goals set by Fairfax County in recent years.

What’s exciting about Greener Mason is we’re encouraging folks

to participate who don’t necessarily have a climate background. We sought small business owners, parents, teachers, and any other Mason District residents who have a passion for the environment. Climate change isn’t a partisan issue; we can’t address it from the comfort of our own silos, whether they’re political, socio-economic, or otherwise. We need a diversity of voices.

When I started my professional career in environmental protection, I quickly realized how important it is for folks to be able to speak for themselves. I often say it’s not enough to have a seat at the table – you also need a voice. Greener Mason’s overarching goal is to ensure people have a platform to share their stories and ideas without relying on someone else to do it for them.

It’s only fitting we announce this committee formation this month as we celebrate “Earth Month” – another change since my environmental roots took hold as a kid. Earth Day started off as an annual celebration of environmental protection on April 22 and now spans an entire month with more than 1 billion people participating

More changes lie ahead for our community and I often wonder what those will look like for my own daughters. We never know where the next groundbreaking idea will come from, so we’re going to find it here in Mason District.

The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors previously set long-term climate goals that include achieving carbon neutrality by 2050, reducing greenhouse gas emissions 50 percent by 2030 and 75 percent by 2040, as well as sector-specific measures involving tree canopy coverage, clean transportation, and landfill diversion. Greener Mason Advisory Committee members will help identify shortterm and long-term projects to recommend to Supervisor Jimenez for possible implication by the BoS to help achieve the county’s goals. The committee will operate as a force multiplier within the county’s strategic plan.

The Greener Mason Advisory Committee will meet quarterly beginning in May. Community members are welcome to attend these public meetings.

sion is serious, requiring medical care.

Just a few weeks after getting treatment, Kay feels better and is excited about growing her family.

“Today, I feel calm and centered. This program saved my life, and I have nothing but gratitude for everyone involved.”

Help is available for women feeling anxious or depressed while pregnant or after deliv -

ery. For more information on the Prenatal/Postpartum Mental Health Program, including the flexible days and hours of the program, please visit our website. hcavirginia.com/about-us/ patient-stories/kamaljit-aujla or call 703.538.2872.

Suzanne Kelly is the Director of Communications and Community Engagement at StoneSprings and Dominion Hospital.

PICTURED FROM LEFT TO RIGHT: Adrian Jones, RN, Kay Aujla (patient), Melissa Garcia, LCSW, MBA (Vice President of Clinical Operations/ Clinical Therapist), Kasie Cassell, DNP, PMHNP-C, WHNP-C, PMH-C (Nurse Practitioner) (Photo: Courtesy Dominion Hospital) Suzanne Kelly StoneSprings and Dominion Hospital
fcnp.com See the Paper Online!
Sup. Andres Jimenez, Mason District Supervisor

Mustang Update

Sports activities at Meridian High School this week began with the girls’ lacrosse team hosting Kettle Run for a Senior Night showdown on Monday, with a trifecta of teams – baseball, softball, and boys’ soccer – all in action on Tuesday hosting Brentsville. It was a mixed bag of results, with lacrosse and soccer able to snag victories in front of the home crowd while baseball and softball came up short.

The lacrosse game figured to be a blowout from the start, as the Mustangs scored four times in the opening three minutes

and led 6-0 after a period. They extended that lead to 13-1 at the half, and then with a running clock throughout the second half, ended up winning 18-3.

Tilly Gale, C.C. Carmody, Ally Campbell, and Lila Deering combined for all of the first sixteen goals, with Gale and Carmody each accounting for five of them while Campbell and Deering had three. Maddie Henry and Marin Baroody then scored once the starters had been taken out of the game, as Meridian improved to a stellar 12-1 on the year.

Softball fell 5-1 the next night, snapping their three-game winning streak and dropping them to 5-11 for the season. Baseball lost

3-1 in a rough one, as they went toe-to-toe with the divisionleading Tigers through the first six innings before Brentsville scored two runs in the top of the seventh to bring the Mustangs’ record to 8-7. On an even more unfortunate note, starting pitcher Alessio Azimipour – who had performed valiantly – was injured on a line drive that hit him in the face during that final inning.

On the bright side for the Mustangs, the boys’ soccer team was able to take care of business by earning a 4-0 shutout win on Tuesday night. Three of those four goals were scored by Felix Green, who completed his hat trick midway through the second half, and the team earned its fifth consecutive win to move to 8-6.

This Week’s FCKLL Report

In an exciting Little League game of the week, there was a showdown between the Expos (coached by Alex Kuczkowski, sponsored by Load Side Electric) emerging victorious over team We Show Speed (coached by David Izawa, sponsored by Beyer Volvo) with a final score of 9-4.

The action kicked off in the top of the first inning when Emmett Grenfell of We Show Speed delivered a powerful single, sending his team onto the scoreboard by hitting a runner in. Grenfell continued to display his prowess in the third inning with a double, further solidifying his team’s lead to 2-0.

However, in a stunning turn of events in the bottom of the fourth inning, the Expos orchestrated a remarkable comeback, scoring five runs on three hits. The pivotal moment came with a clutch double by Devin Karnik, driving in a crucial run and swinging the momentum in favor of the Expos.

Mikey Baltrym, the starting pitcher for the Expos, exhibited remarkable skill on the mound, conceding only five hits and four runs while striking out four batters. Karnik also made a significant impact on the game, pitching one inning in relief for the Expos, conceding only one hit and striking out one batter.

Simon Coho, the starter for We Show Speed, put up a valiant effort, allowing only two hits and three runs while striking out five over three innings. Rami Sarsour and Aidan Izawa pitched in relief, notching seven strikeouts collec-


Michael Downs and Henry Upton proved to be formidable forces in the Expos lineup, each securing two hits. Downs led the team with three runs batted in, while Max Caddy showcased his base running prowess with two stolen bases.

For We Show Speed, Grenfell led the team with two runs batted in on two hits. Aidan Izawa contributed significantly with two hits, with Will Wood and John Coomes each with one hit.

The teams continue their regular season games this week and everyone is welcome to attend! Saturday evening features the Home Run Derby and Hit a Thon championship. It’s a fun event for the entire family and everyone age 14+ is invited to participate. Go to www.fckll.org for details and to register.

FCKLL Majors Season Standings

( as of April 15 )

Expos • 7-4

(Sponsored by Load Side Electric)

Commandos • 3-8

(Sponsored by NDI Custom Homes)

TBD • 8-3

(Sponsored by RPI Advisors)

Little City Legends • 6-5

(Sponsored by Kirk’s Army)

We Show Speed • 6-5

(sponsored by Beyer Volvo)

Clouds • 3-8

(Sponsored by Evergreene Homes)

Falls Church Business News & Notes

Burke & Herbert Just Doubled in Size

Alexandria-based Burke & Herbert Financial Services Corp. has completed its merger with West Virginia-based Summit Financial Group. Burke & Herbert’s assets have more than doubled to approximately $8.3 billion with the all-stock merger. The bank will continue to operate under the Burke & Herbert name and remain headquartered in Alexandria while maintaining an operational presence in Moorefield, West Virginia. CEO David Boyle remains chief executive and Summit CEO Charlie Maddy now serves as president and a director. There are now 75 branches in Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, and Kentucky.

Star May take Local Company Public

Alex Rodriguez, former professional baseball star, is planning to take the local company, Lynk Global, public. Rodriguez’s special purpose acquisition company (SPAC), Slam Corp., signed a definitive business combination agreement with Lynk and at closing would be named Lynk Global Holdings, Inc. The deal could value Lynk Global at as much as $800 million. Lynk provides mobile network service to cellular devices using satellites with the goal to bring coverage to rural areas globally without service. It was founded in 2017 by CEO Charles Miller.

Webinar: Writing a One-Page Business Plan

Score is holding a virtual webinar for aspiring entrepreneurs and business owners on the benefits of writing a one-page business plan, Tuesday, May 14, 1:00 – 2:30 pm. The presenter will review each element of the one-page plan including identifying the problem your business solves, your value proposition, target audience, and more. Live attendees will receive free business resources and a link to the webinar recording. This is free and the link will be shared upon registration. score.org/event/how-write-a-one-pagebusiness-plan-a-step-step-guide

Inova CEO on the Future of Merrifield Campus

Inova Health System once considered the addition of a mixed-use development on the Merrifield campus of Inova, but CEO Stephen Jones reiterated the priority of clinical care in a recent interview. He renamed the space, Inova Center for Personalized Health (ICPH), and instituted a service line model to advance patient care. Inova is also leasing space to the University of Virginia for multiple degree programs and other educational uses to open in January 2025.

 Business News & Notes is compiled by Elise Neil Bengtson, Executive Director of the Greater Falls Church Chamber of Commerce. She may be emailed at elise@fallschurchchamber.org.

THE EXPOS ARE 7-4 on the season. (photo: Nadia Caddy)
Visit us at fcnp.com


Notes PAGE 10 | MAY 9 - 15, 2024
MERIDIAN celebrated future college athletes this week with a packed ceremony. (from left: Kyra Gorman, Alden Harrison, Madeline Miller, Mathew Downs, Susan Rotherham, Grant Greiner, Ceara Murphy. Photo: Laura T. Downs) SENIORS ON THE Mustang Girls Lacrosse Team were honored at Senior Night last week. (Photo: Katie Rosenbusch) SEVENTH GRADERS at Mary Ellen Henderson MS enjoyed a trip to the National Zoo last week. (Photo: Mary Jo West) FOR LEARNERS AT ACTON Academy F.C., the Falls Church News-Press is a weekly must-read!
Check out more School News & Notes pictures and stories online at fcnp.com FALLS CHURCH NEWS-PRESS | FCNP.COM
(Photo: Acton Academy Falls Church)

‘Secret Weapon’ of F.C.’s ‘Secret Sauce,’ Turns 20

Residents of The Little City typically agree that it has a “secret sauce” — something behind its charm that makes such a quaint urban anomaly possible. Though the source of this “secret sauce” is a topic of frequent speculation, the general consensus is that its root is a deeply engaged and interconnected community.

“Our ‘secret sauce,’first and foremost, is the way we work together as a community,” said former Mayor David Tarter in his final address before retiring from office last year, adding that “our schools bring families together with shared purpose.”

The strength of a community can often be judged by the state of its public schools. With Falls Church City Public Schools (FCCPS) being the highest rated school district in Virginia — and one of only two (Arlington County schools being the other) to receive an A+ rating by Niche — a strong FCCPS is at minimum a central component to the “secret sauce” that fuels community cohesion in

The Little City. But public school budgets are tight — even in Falls Church — so how does FCCPS continue to expand upon its excellent reputation?

This year marks two decades since a group of FCCPS stakeholders, powered by startup funds from City Council members, launched the Falls Church Education Foundation (FCEF), a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization dedicated to enhancing the educational experience for FCCPS students.

Since 2004, FCEF has distributed more than $1 million in grants to FCCPS staff and students, awarded hundreds of scholarships to Meridian graduates, supported families facing financial hardships, and clocked over 100 kilometers for its annual Run for the Schools — which has grown to nearly 1,000 participants. Chief among various fundraising endeavors is the FCEF Annual Gala & Auction, being held Friday, May 17, which this year will include a special celebration of the organization’s two decades of service.

Along with a troupe of dedi-

cated volunteers, FCEF is run by three part-time staff — all parents of current FCCPS students — who work out of the FCEF headquarter office, conveniently housed within the FCCPS Central Office.

FCEF channels resources towards initiatives that align with FCCPS’s core pillars: equity of access, staff readiness, and preparing students for success in the 21st century. For the 2023-2024 school year alone, FCEF awarded more than $100,000 in Super Grants across all five FCCPS schools, and will open 2024-2025 applications in the late summer.

Teachers may apply for Super Grant funding for supplemental supplies, training ideas, or other initiatives that align with FCEF priorities.

The News-Press spoke with FCEF executive director Suzanne Hladky and board member Mary Asel ahead of the anniversary celebration to discuss the organization’s two decades of work.

Asel says she joined the board in 2013, when her four boys were all enrolled at FCCPS — her youngest at Jessie Thackery Preschool, her oldest at Meridian (then George

Mason) High School, and an elementary and middle schooler in between: four different schools. “I figured it was better than having to join four different PTAs,” she joked. Her youngest will soon begin his final year at Meridian.

Asel highlighted the emergency funds that FCEF provides, usually in response to urgent requests from school social workers. She says social workers are typically best-equipped to guide how funds are used — FCEF simply provides the support. Her message to social workers: “Please come to us. You do your job, and we’ll try to help.”

Hladky, who has worked for the organization since 2020 and assumed the executive director role last fall, also stressed FCEF’s supportive role. “This really is a close collaboration [between FCCPS and FCEF],” she said, adding that school faculty and educators are the ones who identify challenges and explore response options before requesting assistance from FCEF. “We’re not the policymakers; FCCPS sets the agenda.” She noted FCEF stepping in to assist with Narcan training last year, after a spike in overdose cases across

Northern Virginia schools resulted in the reversal of a long-standing ban of the life-saving drug.

The state of a community’s public schools are “fundamental to who we are as a community,” Hladky said, adding that the goal of providing supplemental funding and support is simple: “Keep good teachers here. And we [at FCCPS] have the best teachers — they’re amazing.”

FCCPS superintendent Dr. Peter Noonan, who regularly references the strength of FCCPS as part of our community’s “secret sauce,” calls FCEF the school district’s “secret weapon,” adding that he regularly mentions the foundation’s active support when interviewing candidates for FCCPS positions.

Noonan said that, in his nearly decade with the district, FCEF has allowed them “to do amazing and innovative projects that we could only imagine [otherwise], given the tight resources we have” as a public school district reliant on public funds.

“In short, the FCEF lets us dream big... and then funds it!” Noonan added.

C.S. Lewis’ ‘The Great Divorce’ at Falls Church’s Trinity School

C.S. Lewis was an English professor and scholar, an author of fantasy and science fiction, and a writer of many well-known Christian theological works. All of these qualities come to the fore in his allegorical novel “The Great Divorce.” The work seems an unlikely option for a twelvegrade school play, but this is exactly what Trinity School at Meadow View will be presenting this weekend at the Pozez Jewish Community Center.

What, precisely, is “The Great Divorce?” Rather than being about a marital breakup (as the title might suggest), the work references poet William Blake’s notion of “The Marriage of Heaven and Hell.” Lewis begins his story like a sci-fi tale à la “The Twilight Zone” in which a group of travelers, gradually realizing they are deceased, find themselves on a trip on a bus to eternity. In addition to the story’s narrator, we meet a series of characters who personify some of our modern sins of life: one who disbelieves in the goodness of Heaven, a business-

man who embodies superficiality, and a person who uses others’ sympathy to manipulate them. We eventually catch glimpses of hell and heaven; the former is not so much a place of torment, but is rather filled with the soulless and who are literally “see-through.”

Heaven, by contrast, contains people who are solid and glow with a visible radiance of goodness. We witnessed a rehearsal and got a sense of how well the students brought their characters to life. Faith Aylesworth wonderfully portrays the sophisticate, cultured in accent and gesture, who dismisses the value of theology. Eleni Ruiz similarly embodies the Grumbling Ghost; dressed as a prim housewife, her indignation and the resentment she has of those around her are the very essence of her character. Ani Tuft depicts the spirit of a person overly possessive of others. Interestingly, she wears a dress in nineteenth-century fashion, as the souls come from different points in history.

Other performers and their interesting characters include Michael Abraham as the enig-

matic bus driver, Jon Kumnick as the Planning Ghost who thinks of Heaven in terms of potential business opportunities(!), and Isaac Patterson as a lizard who personifies temptations of the flesh.

This staging of “The Great Divorce” is especially successful in bringing out some of the work’s modernist tendencies that may not be obvious to one who reads the original book. One example is Claire Newsom performing as the narrator; there is a presumption in reading the book that the narrator is male, but the Trinity production shows this need not be the case. Similarly, the tale is told in the form of a series of non-linear vignettes; this non-linearity is highlighted in the performance, better showing how all of these spirits, regardless of the era in which they lived, share a common choice of destinies.

The school, located in Falls Church, adheres strictly to a classical curriculum, and requires its students to read and discuss works by authors such as Aeschylus, Dante, Descartes, and Dostoyevsky. In preparing for “The Great Divorce,” the students

of the Trinity Class of 2024 have been writing journals exploring “The Great Divorce” in the light of these other authors. The play’s co-director, Mrs. Patty Whelpley, further explained: “We chose this play for two reasons. We knew it would be a perfect fit with the students’ senior Humanities curriculum filled with Dante and Dostoevsky. C.S. Lewis is so good at taking those very deep philosophical conversations and making them applicable to our lives. We also had a very strong

group of actors, and we liked that this play would give them opportunities to fine-tune their talents in Lewis’ little vignettes.”

“The Great Divorce” is a significant philosophical and literary work by C.S. Lewis that is rarely performed on stage. I thus highly recommend this production, which will be performed free of charge at Pozez Jewish Community Center of Northern Virginia (8900 Little River Tpk., Fairfax, VA), May 10 and 11 at 7:00 p.m.

THE CAST OF “The Great Divorce” queue up at a bus stop, ready to embark on a bus trip to eternity. (Photo:Annie Ryland)





Networking Breakfast

Stop by for an informal gathering to meet fellow members of the Greater Falls Church Chamber of Commerce. No agenda or cost other than your breakfast. The Original Pancake House (7395 Lee Hwy., Falls Church), 8:00 a.m. — 9:00 a.m.

Retirement Board Quarterly Meeting

Retirement Board meets. City Hall (300 ParkAve., DogwoodA-B, Falls Church), 6:00 p.m. — 9:00 p.m.

School Board Office Hours

Community members may drop by (no registration required) to ask questions and offer feedback in a casual environment. This is not a private setting; for a private exchange, email members directly. Panjshir Restaurant (114 W. Fairfax St., Falls Church), 6:00 p.m. — 8:00 p.m.

Board of Zoning Appeals Meeting

Zoning Appeals Board meets. City Hall (300 Park Ave., Council Chambers, Falls Church), 7:30 p.m.


Festival Ballet Virginia: REACH!

Festival Ballet Virginia returns to the CenterStage in Reston to present a program entitled "REACH! Celebrating Diversity, Inclusion and the Advisity That Makes Us Stronger. Tickets at gwdancecenter.com. Reston Community Center Lake Anne (1609-A Washington Plaza N, Reston, VA), 7:30 p.m.


Silent Auction Opens

Silent auction opens for the Falls Church Education Foundation (FCEF) 20th anniversary Gala. Register for a bidder number, browse items, and get ready to bid. Items may be won even if

bidder cannot attend the May 18 gala. Online (register at tinyurl.com/FCNP0524ef), all day.


MAY 11

F.C. Garden Club

Annual Plant Sale

The Falls Church Garden Club hosts a plant sale, offering everything gardening: plants, pots, tools, gifts, décor and more! Visit fallschurchgardenclub.org for a flyer redeemable for $1 off any item priced $2 or more. Falls Church Community Center (223 Little Falls St., Kenneth R. Burnett Bldg., Falls Church), 8:00 a.m. — 12:00 p.m.

Falls Church Farmers Market

Shop the award-winning market every Saturday, year-round! City Hall Parking Lot (300 Park Ave., Falls Church), 8:00 a.m. — 12:00 p.m.

Children's Business Fair

The Acton Children's Business Fair of D.C. features over 100 young entrepreneurs ages 6 to 14. Shop everything homemade soap, original jewelry, marbled note cards, baked treats, and more. Fun for the family and free to attend. More at dcchildrensbusinessfair.org. Outdoor Market (1521 20th St. NW, Washington, DC), 10:00 a.m. — 12:30 p.m.

Miss Evita's Family Drag Lunch

Let your imagination soar! Allages storytime, dancing, special guests, and fun. Tickets at evitaperoxide.com. Clare and Don's Beach Shack (130 N. Washington St., Falls Church), 11:30 a.m.

F.C. Women's History Walk

67 self-guided "Herstory" stations document women's contributions to F.C. history. Grand Marshals Betty Allan, Maureen Budetti, Cynthia Garner, Mary Gavin, and Marian Selby will be honored at a ceremony at the Cherry Hill Farmhouse at 12:00 p.m. Free to attend. Cherry

Hill Park (312 Park Ave., Falls Church), 10:00 a.m. — 3:00 p.m.

Beer, Bourbon, & BBQ Festival

This affair will offer up all those pleasures that true southerners live by: beer, bourbon, barbecue, boots, bacon, biscuits, bluegrass, and smoked beasts! Enjoy a great day of sippin', tastin', listenin', smokin' and eatin'. Guests receive souvenir glass upon entry; tickets include unlimited beer and bourbon tastings, a BBQ plate dinner plus two extra hours of sampling, live music, contests, and more. Prince William County Fairgrounds (10624 Dumfries Rd., Manassas, VA), 2:00 p.m. — 6:00 p.m.

MRSPL Foundation Volunteer Open House

The Mary Riley Styles Public Library holds an open house seeking adult volunteers (18+). Attend to learn how to get involved; email questions to mrsplfoundation@ gmail.com. MRSPL (120 N. Virginia Ave., Upper Conf. Rm., Falls Church), 5:30 p.m. — 6:30 p.m.


MAY 12

Camerata Transcontinental

The virtuosi of Camerata Transcontinental gather from all across the continent to play a concert, "Continental Connections: A Musical Tour of Renaissance England & Europe," drawn from the result of these encounters. Details and tickets at capitolearlymusic.com. Saint George's Episcopal Church (915 N. Oakland St., Arlington, VA), 3:00 p.m.


MAY 13

ESOL Advisory Committee Meeting

FCCPS English as a Second or Other Language (ESOL) Advisory Committee meets in FRC (Room 118). Mary Ellen Henderson Middle School (105 Mustang Alley, Falls Church), 6:00 p.m. — 7:30 p.m.

Day Care Advisory Board Meeting

FCCPS Day Care Advisory Board meets, monthly on the second Monday. Falls Church City Public Schools Central Office (150 S. Washington St., Suite 400, Falls Church), 6:30 p.m. — 8:00 p.m.

City Council Meeting & Budget Hearing

The City Council meeting will begin with a public hearing, second reading, and final consideration of the proposed budget ordinance, tax rates, and Capital Improvements Program (CIP). There will be a public comment opportunity. The council meets the second and fourth Monday monthly, except August and December when only one meeting is held. Address the council on any topic during the public comment period by signing up at fallschurchva.gov/publiccomment. View the meeting live or on-demand at fallschurchva.gov/ CouncilMeetings and on FCCTV. City Hall (300 Park Ave., Council Chambers/Court Room, Falls Church), 7:30 p.m. — 10:00 p.m.


MHS Renewable Energy Club EV Talk, Test Drive

Are EVs the future of transportation? Meridian's Renewable Energy Club hosts a short talk on the benefits of EVs, followed by Tesla test drives! RSVP at tinyurl. com/FCNP0524ev. Meridian High School (121 Mustang Alley, Falls Church), 10:00 a.m. — 4:00 p.m.

FCCPS Employee Awards Reception

FCCPS Employee Awards Reception. City Hall (300 Park Ave., Dogwood A-B, Falls Church), 6:30 p.m. — 7:00 p.m.

Housing Commission Meeting

Housing Commission meets. City Hall (300 Park Ave., Dogwood A-B, Falls Church), 6:30 p.m. — 8:30 p.m.

PAGE 12 | MAY 9 - 15, 2024
PUNK ROCKER Kathleen Hanna brings her "Rebel Girl Book Tour" to The Lincoln next Thursday. (Photo: Jason Frank Rothenberg)



Aurora House CAC Meeting

Aurora House Citizens' Advisory Committee meets. City Hall (300 Park Ave., Laurel Room, Falls Church), 7:00 p.m. — 8:30 p.m.

FCCPS School Board Meeting

FCCPS school board meets. Open to public. City Hall (300 Park Ave., Council Chambers/Court Room, Falls Church), 7:00 p.m. — 10:30 p.m.


MAY 15

Library Board of Trustees Meeting

Library Board of Trustees meets. Mary Riley Styles Public Library (120 N. Virginia Ave., Upper Floor Conf. Rm., Falls Church), 6:00 p.m. — 8:00 p.m.

Planning Commission Meeting

Planning Commission meets. City Hall (300 Park Ave., Council Chambers/Court Room, Falls Church), 7:30 p.m. — 10:00 p.m.

Urban Forestry Commission Meeting

Urban Forestry Commission meets. City Hall (300 Park Ave., Dogwood A-B, Falls Church), 7:30 p.m. — 9:00 p.m.

Sig Theatre Presents: Hair

The sensational, groundbreaking rock musical bursts with the jubilant spirit, raging rebellion and psychedelic color of the 1960s. A company of long-haired bohemian hippies on the cusp of adulthood champion freedom, pacifism, and joy, but confront a world thrown into chaos when one of their own receives a draft notice for the Vietnam War. On stage through July 7. Tickets at sigtheatre.org. Signature Theatre (4200 Campbell Ave., Arlington, VA), 7:30 p.m.


Arts and Humanities Council Meeting

Arts and Humanities Council meets. City Hall (300 Park Ave., Dogwood A-B, Falls Church), 9:30 a.m. — 11:00 a.m.

Human Svcs. Advisory Council Meeting

Human Services Advisory Council meets. City Hall (300 Park Ave., Dogwood A-B, Falls Church), 6:30 p.m. — 7:30 p.m.

Kathleen Hanna: 'Rebel Girl' Book Tour

Join Punk singer, artist, and front-woman of influential bands Bikini Kill and Le Tigre, Kathleen Hanna, for a reading of her new book "Rebel Girl." Lincoln Theatre (1215 U St. NW, Washington, DC), 7:00 p.m.

Environ. Sustainability Council Meeting

Environmental Sustainability Council meets. City Hall (300 Park Ave., Council Chambers/Court Room, Falls Church), 7:30 p.m. — 9:30 p.m.

Bubbly Black Girl Sheds Her Chameleon Skin

What's a black girl from sunny Southern California to do? White people are blowing up black girls in Birmingham churches. Black people are shouting "Black is beautiful" while straightening their hair and coveting light skin. Viveca Stanton's answer: slap on a bubbly smile and be as white as you can be! In a humorous and pointed coming-of-age story spanning the '60s through the 90s, Viveca blithely sails through the confusing worlds of racism, sexism and Broadway showbiz until she's forced to face the devastating effect selfdenial has had on her life. Tickets at creativecauldron.org. Creative Cauldron (410 S. Maple Ave., Falls Church), 7:30 p.m.

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LONG-HAIRED BOHEMIAN hippies on the cusp of adulthood champion freedom, pacifism, and joy — until one receives a draft notice for the Vietnam War — in "Hair," at Sig Theatre through July 7. (Courtesy Photo)


Community News & Notes

F.C. Kid Throws 1st Pitch at Nats Game for ‘Star Wars Day’

Bryce Burstein, a local kindergartner at Haycock Elementary, was not expecting the VIP treatment at the “Star Wars Day” game on Saturday (May the fourth be with you), but his Darth Vader outfit had other plans.

Decked out in “Star Wars” outfits and waiting in a long line to take pictures with “Star Wars” characters on the concourse level, Burstein and his mother, Jenny Vandrovec, were approached by Stormtroopers — who asked Bryce to come with them.

“The next thing we knew, we were walking down the tunnel onto the field!” Vandrovec said. Flanked by a Stormtrooper on one side and Supreme Leader Snoke on the other, Burstein was approached by MLB pitcher Kyle Finnegan, who came out and asked him to throw the first pitch of the game.

With a slight drizzle, and peering through his Vader mask, the six-year-old Burstein — who also sports a senior blue belt in MMA — threw a solid strike to Finnegan as a packed stadium cheered.

Enjoy additional pictures and video of the experience on the News-Press website.

Women’s History Walk This Saturday at Cherry Hill Park

The 2024 Falls Church Women’s History Walk is this Saturday, from 10:00 a.m. — 3:00 p.m. in Cherry Hill Park. The event is composed of 67 self-guided “Her Story” stations setup throughout the park representing the F.C. Women’s History “All-Stars,” showcasing the stellar contributions of women to our community from the 1600s through today. The Farmhouse will be open to the public for the occasion, with organizers hinting that Judge Riley may make a surprise appearance.

At noon, join a special ceremony on the front porch of the Cherry Hill Farmhouse to recognize this year’s Grand Marshals and Honorees: Betty Allan, Maureen Budetti, Cynthia Garner, Mary Gavin, Marian Selby, Merelyn Kaye, and Nancy Stock.

Other signs and stations featured in and around the park will be civic group displays including the Young Women of Action from our Middle and High Schools, and Falls Church Entrepreneurial Women.

The Women’s History Walk was founded by the Tinner Hill Heritage Foundation and is presented by The Falls Church Women’s History Group. For more information about walks past and present, visit sites. google.com/view/fc-womens-history-walk/home.

150 Food For Neighbors Volunteers Fight Local Hunger

Wrapping up National Volunteer Week with community service, 150 local volunteers rolled up their sleeves to tackle teen food insecurity in the Falls Church vicinity.

150 volunteers! That’s approximately how many local community members showed up at Luther Jackson Middle School on April 27 to collect and sort over 4,800 pounds of food and toiletries bound for Jackson MS, Falls Church HS, Justice HS, Annandale HS, Fairfax HS, and Cedar Lane School.

These are six of 47 Food For Neighbors schools that received nearly 26,000 pounds of donations collected. It was the perfect way to highlight the power of volunteerism as National Volunteer Week came to a close.

Food For Neighbors is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that helps schools establish inhouse pantries, and mobilizes communities surrounding the schools to fill them with food and toiletries, donated through the nonprofit’s popular Red Bag Program.

The program makes food readily accessible for students to get a boost of energy during the school day and to take home to enjoy over weekends and holidays. For the most vulnerable students, Food For Neighbors also provides grocery store gift cards, so students and their families may shop for food that they most need, like fresh fruits and vegetables.

In the Falls Church operational

area, 33 volunteer drivers and their helpers collected over 4,800 pounds of food and toiletries from 345 generous households. The drivers then delivered the donations to Luther Jackson Middle School, where approximately 90 volunteers sorted and transported them to nearby schools. Among the many volunteers were representatives from the Kiwanis Club of Tysons, Social4Good, the Junior Volunteer League, and the Hunter Mill Chapter of the Young Men’s Service League.

“The experience was amazing — so well organized, and the amount of donations was truly impressive,” shared Kelly DeSenti, who helped to coordinate participation by her Social4Good colleagues. “The impact of teen food insecurity is far reaching and to contribute in this way was greatly appreciated.”

School staff, who connect Food For Neighbors resources with teens in need, have shared heartfelt stories about the gratitude and relief that students and their families feel when they receive the supplemental food support. Staff surveys also reflect that the majority of students experience multiple, positive impacts, including more regular school attendance and better focus. This helps students reach their full potential, which lifts them and the community up as a whole.

Karen Joseph, Food For Neighbors founder and executive director, greatly appreciates the community members that make their work possible. She shared, “As National Volunteer Week comes to a close, I want to extend a heartfelt thank you to each and every one of you who has dedicated your time and energy to our mission... your commitment lights the way toward a brighter future, free from childhood hunger. Your actions inspire hope and warmth within our community. We are deeply grateful for your efforts and truly could not do this without you. Thank you for being such an integral part of our journey and for your continued support.”

To learn more, please visit foodforneighbors.org/get-involved.

FOR “STAR WARS DAY,” local kindergartner Bruce Burstein, dressed as Darth Vader, was asked to throw the first pitch. (Photo: Jenny Vandrovec) MCLEAN DAY returns in just two weeks on Saturday May 18, with rides, food, music, and more. (Photo: McLean Community Center) FOOD FOR OTHERS volunteers collected and sorted over 4,800 lbs of food destined for nearby schools in Fairfax County. (Courtesy Photo)

The LGBTQ+ Reach New Apartment Complex Announced In West End

I Cannot Be Held Responsible For My Actions If I See A Black Balloon, Be Warned I turn 40 today, which brings with it all of those tropes and feelings about getting old.

As was the case when I was approaching 30, I have spent nearly the entire year overanalyzing every aspect of my health, reflecting on my life thus far, buying moisturizer in bulk, and reiterating to friends that I an not bluffing, and will not behave if someone tries to throw me an “Over the Hill” party.

I’m a Millennial — of the first generation making less than our parents — we may never reach the top of that hill.

Friend, LGBTQ+ Activist, and Democratic Organizer, Don Davenport, Has Died

On Monday morning, a friend and fellow board member with the LGBT+ Democrats of Virginia for a decade, Don Davenport, died after a long illness. He is survived by his wonderful husband Chuck.

Don gave the best bear hugs, was enthusiastically kind to everyone, and he showed up more than anyone. Our community and world are better off because of him. We’ll never have another Don, and I’m so grateful for having known him.

As a result, today I’m not preoccupied with worry about growing old. Instead, I’m just hoping that, when my time comes to leave this mortal plane, I can look back at a life containing even a fraction of the good deeds of Don Davenport.

Yesterday I took some time to transcribe his talk at an event commemorating 50 year after the Stonewall riots of 1969 in which he was a participant. Those words can be found on the News-Press website.

Reconciling Ministries Network Takes Well-Deserved Sabbatical

On Monday the Reconciling Ministries Network — an organization formed in 1984 to advance justice and inclusion for all LGBTQ+ people in the United Methodist Church (UMC) and beyond, announced that the organization would be taking a one-week sabbatical.

Last Friday marked the end of the UMC’s biannual general conference in Charlotte, NC, an event that sees church leaders from around the world gather to discuss policy.

Last week I shared the massive changes to UMC policy so far, noting that a debate on the biggest change — recognition of gay marriage — was still to come.

Well, on Friday it did. As the conference neared its close, the body met the 2/3 voting threshold to officially adopt the new, more inclusive definition of marriage.

Pending the ratification of regionalization at this year’s annual conferences, the “three R’s” of reconciliation — goals of regionalization, repeal, and revision — have all been achieved.

Show Up Saturday To Ensure Lovers Continue to Outnumber Haters

Last Saturday, counterprotesters lined up outside Freddie’s Beach Bar (the only gay

venue in Northern Virginia), creating a barrier between protesters and the children and families attending a drag story hour. Last month the same event was disrupted after a bomb threat forced Freddie’s to be evacuated while a bomb-sniffing dog cleared the premises.

Here in The Little City, Drag events held at Clare and Don’s Beach Shack (130 N. Washington St., Falls Church) have also been protested, by a group at least partially tied to a Christian nationalist group, The American Society for the Defense of Traditional, Family and Property. Legally incorporated as The Foundation for a Christian Civilization, the group is comprised of conservative Catholics in opposition to the Pope’s more inclusive views.

This Saturday marks the return of Miss Evita’s Drag Lunch, with doors opening at 11:30. Show up decked out in rainbow pride to block protesters from view.

Boy Scouts Announce Rebrand, Will Become Scouting America in 2025

On Tuesday the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) announced that they would be changing their name in early 2025 to Scouting America, saying the change reflects the organization being for all.

The organization, which since its founding in 1910 has had over 130 million young participants, has been rapidly evolving over the last decade or so.

In 2013 they began allowing LGBTQ+ youth to join. In 2015 they reversed a ban on gay scout leaders. In 2019 they opened their programs to girls. And next year they will drop the gender label.

The change comes five years after researcher testimony in a sexual assault claim against the organization revealed internal files identifying at least 12,254 child victims of sexual abuse from 7,819 scout leaders.

At Some Point, We Should Really Acknowledge The Pattern Here

Also in last week’s issue were new reports on 1990s sex abuse claims at F.C. Episcopal. I took the time to read a great deal of the evidence from the report.

Jeffrey T. Taylor, the former youth minister accused of numberous allegations of overt and covert sexual abuse of youth in his program.

It’s notable that, when the Episcopal church ordained a gay bishop in New Hampshire, Taylor led the defection of more conservative church members, who opened up the F.C. Anglican Church.

Account after account describe a Taylor who repeatedly and aggressively bombarded male students with discussions of masturbation, sexual morality, and sexual acts. In the case of at least three of the students, sexual abuse was found to have been “significantly more overt” than other cases, the full number of which are not known, but number at least in the dozens.

False concerns about LGBTQ+ “groomers” are continuously being raised by conservatives, while those trying the hardest to control sexuality — the most vocally anti-LGBTQ+ — seem to be the actual ones harming children.

Hoffman & Associates, a nationally recognized developer of mixed-use and residential communities across the Mid-Atlantic and Southeast, today announced the details of its newest residential building in the West Falls development in Falls Church’s massive west end development. It is called The Alder. A press release notes, “as the West Falls neighborhood nears completion, The Alder’s nature-inspired design, warm, inviting spaces, thoughtful services and sophisticated finishes curate the ultimate living experience in the heart of this dynamic community.”

Situated at 136 West Falls Station Boulevard in the heart of the dynamic West Falls neighborhood, the eight-story building will include 400 new residences, expansive indoor and outdoor amenity spaces, and thoughtfully curated ground-floor retail options seamlessly integrating into the community. The Alder offers residents unmatched proximity to the neighborhood’s pedestrian-friendly paths, trails and green spaces, including The Commons—the central outdoor community space. Residents will also enjoy convenient access to the neighborhood’s diverse range of restaurants, shops and services, including local, national and experiential favorites, wellness and educational offerings. Additionally, The Alder provides residents unparalleled access to the West Falls Church Metrorail Station and Tysons Corner as well as close proximity to key transportation hubs and connectors across the DMV region, including Dulles International Airport, Reagan National Airport, Interstate 495, Leesburg Pike (Route 7), and Interstate 66.

The Alder derives its name from the community’s deep roots in nature, with the interiors inspired by nature’s timeless design, blending warm, natural finishes with modern style, creating an ambiance that is both warmly familiar and refreshingly new. Featuring floor plans ranging from studios to spacious twobedroom homes, each residence caters to residents’ distinctive lifestyles. The residences offer two distinct color palettes, all harmonizing with elevated design elements such as quartz countertops, matte black hardware and luxury wood-style flooring. Kitchens are equipped with top-of-the-line Samsung appliances, complemented by frameless, two-tone cabinetry, ceramic glazed tile backsplashes, and versatile islands that enhance floor plan flexibility. The elevated finishes extend to the bathrooms, where spacious vanities are paired with decorative sconces and ceramic tile, completing the modern aesthetic. Living spaces at The Alder also feature in-unit GE washers and dryers, and balconies or terraces are available in select units.

“Our team at Hoffman & Associates is pleased to introduce The Alder, a striking apartment community with 400 thoughtfully designed apartment homes and expansive indoor and outdoor amenity spaces,” said Shawn Seaman, President of Hoffman & Associates. “As the city of Falls Church continues to grow and evolve, we are proud to deliver West Falls, the city’s largest develop-

ment to date, bringing residential, retail, office and hospitality together within one dynamic neighborhood that will serve as a new gateway to the city. The Alder invites residents to embrace a vibrant lifestyle, with timeless design inspired by nature and expansive amenity spaces, all surrounded by distinctive dining, shopping, wellness and educational offerings unique to West Falls.”

The Alder comprises an expansive 26,000 square feet of amenity space, reflecting the lively personality and welcoming energy of West Falls. Seamlessly blending indoor and outdoor areas, the building ensures residents’ daily activities are both convenient and energizing. Upon entering one of the two welcoming lobbies, residents are greeted by curated reading materials, inviting seating areas, private workspaces and a hospitality bar. Fitness enthusiasts will appreciate the state-of-the-art fitness center, featuring a dedicated training room with weight training and cardio equipment, a yoga studio and a versatile outdoor workout space.

Residents can work from home in the library lounge or relax by the fireplace and TV. Even pets are indulged at The Alder, with a dedicated pet spa complete with a dog washing and grooming station. The residents’ lounge is the perfect setting for social gatherings, featuring an entertaining kitchen and wet bar overlooking the courtyards, ensuring memorable moments with neighbors and friends. Outdoors, residents can enjoy green spaces across two courtyards featuring a resortstyle pool, grilling stations and various seating options, including a TV lounge for the ultimate outdoor viewing experience, complete with a fire pit.

At The Alder, residents will have convenient access to over 123,000 square feet of retail, including personal care, wellness, shopping, daycare and a diverse selection of dining concepts. Recently announced retail coming to West Falls include Honoo Ramen and Bar, Perspire Sauna Studios and Casabella Salon, with more to be announced soon. Previously announced retailers coming to West Falls include regional favorites Ice Cream Jubilee, Mason’s Famous Lobster Rolls, fast-casual burger concept BurgerFi, Korean comfort food quick service restaurant SeoulSpice and the early education and preschool program Tierra Encantada.

The West Falls neighborhood is home to Home2 Suites by Hilton, The Wellness Center, a medical office building, and the recently announced Experience Senior Living residence, The Reserve at Falls Church. West Falls will include more than 150,000 square feet of open space, including The Commons. At the heart of West Falls, The Commons provides more than 18,000 square feet of central outdoor green space that will feature artful landscaping, ample outdoor seating, two retail concepts, flexible spaces with moveable furniture, a fire pit and pop jet fountains, while also serving as a welcoming space for seasonal community events.



DECEMBER 1, 2024

CASE NO. PUR-2024-00029

On March 5, 2024, pursuant to § 56-585.1 A 5 e of the Code of Virginia (“Code”), Virginia Electric and Power Company (“Dominion” or “Company”) filed a petition (“Petition”) with the State Corporation Commission (“Commission”) for an annual update with respect to its coal combustion residuals (“CCR”) rate adjustment clause, designated Rider CCR, for the recovery of costs incurred to comply with the requirements of Virginia Senate Bill 1355, codified as Code § 10.1-1402.03.

On October 26, 2021, by its Order Approving Rate Adjustment Clause in Case No. PUR 2021-00045 (“2021 Order”), the Commission approved the Company’s request for approval of Rider CCR, for the recovery of costs associated with certain environmental projects involving CCR removal (collectively, “Projects”) at the Company’s Bremo Power Station, Chesterfield Power Station, Possum Point Power Station, and Chesapeake Energy Center (collectively, the “Power Stations”). On October 16, 2023, by its Final Order in Case No. PUR-2023-00022 (“2023 Rider CCR proceeding”), the Commission approved the most recent annual update to Rider CCR and directed the Company to “file its next Rider CCR application on or after February 28, 2024.”

Dominion states that it is filing this annual update to inform the Commission of the status of the Projects at the Power Stations, and to provide the proposed cost allocation, rate design, and accounting treatment for service rendered during a proposed rate year commencing December 1, 2024, and extending through November 30, 2025 (“Rate Year”), as related to proposed Rider CCR.

In this proceeding, Dominion asks the Commission to approve Rider CCR for the Rate Year. The Company states that the two components of the revenue requirement are the Projected Cost Recovery Factor and the Actual Cost True-Up Factor. The Company requests a Projected Cost Recovery Factor revenue requirement of $220,660,684, and an Actual Cost True Up Factor revenue requirement of $(117,667,009). Thus, the Company proposes a total revenue requirement requested for recovery in this Rider CCR proceeding for the Rate Year of $102,993,674.

Dominion asserts that, consistent with the Company’s 2023 Rider CCR proceeding, the Company continues to allocate Rider CCR costs on an energy basis using a Factor 3 non-bypassable allocation methodology, as approved by the Commission in the 2021 Order.

If the revised Rider CCR for the Rate Year is approved, the impact on customer bills would depend on the customer’s rate schedule and usage. According to Dominion, implementation of its revised Rider CCR on December 1, 2024, would decrease the monthly bill of a residential customer using 1,000 kilowatt hours per month by approximately $1.20.

The details of these and other proposals are set forth in the Company’s Petition. Interested persons are encouraged to review the Company’s Petition, testimony and supporting exhibits for the details of these proposals.

TAKE NOTICE that the Commission may apportion revenues among customer classes and/or design rates in a manner differing from that shown in the Petition and supporting documents and thus may adopt rates that differ from those appearing in the Company’s Petition and supporting documents.

On August 15, 2024, at 10 a.m., or at the conclusion of the public witness portion of the hearing, whichever is later, in the Commission’s second floor courtroom located in the Tyler Building, 1300 East Main Street, Richmond, Virginia 23219, the Hearing Examiner will convene a hearing to receive testimony and evidence offered by the Company, respondents, and the Commission’s Staff on the Petition.

To promote administrative efficiency and timely service of filings upon participants, the Commission has directed the electronic filing of testimony and pleadings, unless they contain confidential information, and has required electronic service on parties to this proceeding.

Electronic copies of the public version of the Petition may be obtained by submitting a written request to counsel for the Company: Elaine S. Ryan, Esquire, McGuireWoods LLP, Gateway Plaza, 800 East Canal Street, Richmond, Virginia 23219, or eryan@mcguirewoods.com. Interested persons also may download unofficial copies from the Commission’s website: scc.virginia.gov/pages/Case-Information

On or before August 8, 2024, any interested person may submit comments on the Petition electronically by following the instructions on the Commission’s website: scc.virginia.gov/casecomments/Submit-Public-Comments. Those unable, as a practical matter, to submit comments electronically may file such comments by U.S. mail to the Clerk of the State Corporation Commission, c/o Document Control Center, P.O. Box 2118, Richmond, Virginia 23218-2118. All comments shall refer to Case No. PUR-2024-00029.

On or before June 14, 2024, any person or entity wishing to participate as a respondent in this proceeding may do so by filing a notice of participation with the Clerk of the Commission at: scc.virginia.gov/clk/efiling. Those unable, as a practical matter, to file a notice of participation electronically may file such notice by U.S. mail to the Clerk of the Commission at the address listed above. Such notice of participation shall include the email addresses of such parties or their counsel, if available. A copy of the notice of participation as a respondent also must be sent to counsel for the Company. Pursuant to 5 VAC 5-20-80 B, Participation as a respondent, of the Commission’s Rules of Practice and Procedure (“Rules of Practice”), any notice of participation shall set forth: (i) a precise statement of the interest of the respondent; (ii) a statement of the specific action sought to the extent then known; and (iii) the factual and legal basis for the action. Any organization, corporation, or government body participating as a respondent must be represented by counsel as required by 5 VAC 5-20-30, Counsel, of the Rules of Practice. All filings shall refer to Case No. PUR2024-00029.

On or before June 28, 2024, each respondent may file electronically with the Clerk of the Commission at scc.virginia.gov/clk/efiling any testimony and exhibits by which the respondent expects to establish its case. Any respondent unable, as a practical matter, to file testimony and exhibits electronically may file such by U.S. mail to the Clerk of the Commission at the address listed above. Each witness’s testimony shall include a summary not to exceed one page. All testimony and exhibits shall be served on the Commission’s Staff, the Company, and all other respondents simultaneous with its filing. In all filings, respondents shall comply with the Commission’s Rules of Practice, as modified by the Commission’s Order for Notice and Hearing, including, but not limited to: 5 VAC 5-20-140, Filing and service, and 5 VAC 5-20-240, Prepared testimony and exhibits. All filings shall refer to Case No. PUR-2024-00029.

Any documents filed in paper form with the Office of the Clerk of the Commission in this docket may use both sides of the paper. In all other respects, except as modified by the Commission’s Order for Notice and Hearing, all filings shall comply fully with the requirements of 5 VAC 5-20-150, Copies and format, of the Commission’s Rules of Practice.

The Commission’s Rules of Practice, the Commission’s Order for Notice and Hearing, and the public version of the Petition and other documents filed in this case may be viewed on the Commission’s website at: scc.virginia.gov/pages/Case-Information

The Commission entered an Order for Notice and Hearing in this proceeding that, among other things, scheduled a public hearing on Dominion’s Petition. On August 15, 2024, at 10 a.m., the Hearing Examiner will hold a telephonic portion of the hearing, for the purpose of receiving the testimony of public witnesses. On or before August 8, 2024, any person desiring to offer testimony as a public witness shall provide to the Commission (a) your name, and (b) the telephone number that you wish the Commission to call during the hearing to receive your testimony. This information may be provided to the Commission in three ways: (i) by filling out a form on the Commission’s website at scc.virginia.gov/pages/Webcasting; (ii) by completing and emailing the PDF version of this form to SCCInfo@scc.virginia.gov; or (iii) by calling (804) 371-9141. This public witness hearing will be webcast at scc.virginia.gov/pages/Webcasting NOTICE TO THE PUBLIC OF PETITION BY VIRGINIA ELECTRIC AND POWER COMPANY FOR REVISION OF A RATE ADJUSTMENT CLAUSE, DESIGNATED RIDER CCR, FOR THE RATE YEAR COMMENCING




The following was given first reading at the April 29, 2024 City Council meeting. A public hearing and possible Recommendation to City Council is scheduled for Wednesday, May 15, 2024 at 7:30 p.m., or as soon thereafter as the matter may be heard.


Affirmative Planning Commission action would recommend that City Council approve amendments to the City’s floodplain district boundaries of the Zoning Map to meet updated floodplain boundaries set by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and National Floodplain Insurance Program (NFIP).

Following the Planning Commission’s Public Hearing and Recommendation, City Council action would add the following properties to the floodplain district on June 6, 2024:

(51-116-041) 6936 N 26TH ST

(51-117-002) 6947 N FOUR MILE RUN DR

(51-116-042) 6935 N 26TH ST

(51-116-018) 6933 N 26TH ST

(51-101-012) 214 W JEFFERSON ST

(51-101-010) 114 W JEFFERSON ST (51-101-019) 537 N WASHINGTON ST

(53-101-120) GRESHAM PL

(52-205-017) 402 TIMBER LN

(53-101-073) 500 E JEFFERSON ST

(53-101-005) 507 E COLUMBIA

(52-402-039) 219 W CAMERON RD

(52-312-100) 410 S MAPLE AVE

(53-208-015) 408 VAN BUREN ST

Following the Planning Commission’s Public Hearing and Recommendation, City Council action would remove the following properties from the floodplain district on June 6, 2024:

(52-106-007) 1013 KENNEDY ST

(52-608-030) 310 KENT ST

(52-608-029) 309 KENT ST

(52-608-028) 308 KENT ST

(52-608-005) 600 RANDOLPH ST

(52-206-025) 139 LEA CT

(52-206-054) 212 S OAK ST

(52-302-281) 146 REES PL

(52-602-020) 519 S SPRING ST

(52-602-019) 521 S SPRING ST

(52-302-276) 156 REES PL

(52-302-036) 211 S LEE ST

(52-302-012) 422 SHERROW AVE

Allpublic hearings will be held in the Council Chambers, 300 Park Avenue, Falls Church, Virginia. Remote participation information at www.fallschurchva.gov/publiccomment. Comments may also be sent to jtrainor@fallschurchva.gov. For copies of legislation, contact the City Clerk’s office at (703-248-5014) or cityclerk@fallschurchva.gov or visit www. fallschurchva.gov/councilmeetings. The City of Falls Church is committed to the letter and spirit of the Americans with Disabilities Act. To request a reasonable accommodation for any type of disability, call 703-248-5014 (TTY 711).


On May 15, 2024, at 7:30 p.m., the City of Falls Church Planning Commission will hold a public hearing during their regularly scheduled meeting, in the Dogwood Room at City Hall, 300 Park Avenue, Falls Church Virginia 22046, on the following: (TR24-05) RESOLUTION TO AMEND CHAPTER 3 OF THE CITY OF FALLS CHURCH’S COMPREHENSIVE PLAN TO ADD: “THE TINNER HILL HISTORIC & CULTURAL DISTRICT”

Meeting agenda and materials will be available on the following page prior to the public meeting: http://www.fallschurchva.gov/PC. Information on the project can also be found at on the project webpage: http://fallschurchva. gov/TinnerHillDistrict

The City of Falls Church is committed to the letter and spirit of the Americans with Disabilities Act. To request a reasonable accommodation for any type of disability, call 703-248-5040 (TTY 711).


The ordinances referenced below were given first reading on April 8, 2024. Public hearings are scheduled for Monday, April 29, 2024 and Monday, May 13, 2024, with second reading and final Council action scheduled for Monday, May 13, 2024 at 7:30 p.m., or as soon thereafter as the matters may be heard. (TO24-03) ORDINANCE FIXING AND DETERMINING THE BUDGET OF EXPENDITURES AND REVENUES AND APPROPRIATING FUNDS FOR THE FISCAL YEAR 2025: GENERAL FUND; SCHOOL OPERATING FUND; SCHOOL COMMUNITY SERVICE FUND; SCHOOL FOOD SERVICE FUND; CABLE ACCESS FUND; SEWER FUND; STORMWATER FUND; COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY; AND CAPITAL IMPROVEMENT PROGRAM FUNDS; AND TO ADOPT THE FY2025-FY2030 CAPITAL IMPROVEMENTS PROGRAM

The FY2025 proposed budget and Capital Improvements Program (CIP) includes:

• $138,317,769 for the General Fund revenues and expenditures.

• $9,506,129 for the Sewer Fund revenues and expenditures.

• $1,923,000 for the Stormwater Fund revenues and expenditures.

• $254,588 for the Cable Access Fund revenues and expenditures.

• $1,648,000 for the Affordable Housing Fund revenues and expenditures.

$65,386,238 for the School Operating Fund revenues and expenditures.

$2,310,700 for the School Community Service Fund revenues and expenditures.

• $1,519,553 for the School Food Service Fund revenues and expenditures.

• The proposed FY2025 budget and appropriation for the CIP includes $8,515,000 for the General Government and Schools, $9,769,799 for the Special Transportation Fund, $3,307,129 for the Sewer Fund, and $5,000,000 for the Stormwater Fund. The FY2025 CIP is funded with $11,370,252 in grants, $2,645,000 of General Fund revenues, $9,159,547 of General Fund Capital Reserves, and $3,307,129 of Sewer Fund revenues and fund balance; and $110,000 is unfunded.

• The proposed FY2025-FY2030 CIP includes $57,622,900 for the General Government and Schools, $82,691,591 for the Special Transportation Fund, $36,896,925 for the Sewer Fund, and $14,050,000 for the Stormwater Fund for a total of $191,261,416 to be funded with $63,280,978 in grants, $14,070,000 of General Fund revenues, $20,125,777 of General Fund Capital Reserves, $8,949,894 of Sewer Fund revenues and fund balance, and $60,147,031 of debt proceeds; $24,687,736 is unfunded. The FY2025 budget and appropriation for the West Falls Community Development Authority Fund includes $919,150 in expenditures and revenues from special assessments of $919,150 which will be levied and collected by the City in accordance with the request from the West Falls Community Development Authority (CDA) at its meeting of March 29, 2024, pursuant to the Memorandum of Understanding dated July 1, 2022 between the City, CDA, and other parties. (TO24-04) ORDINANCE SETTING THE RATE OF TAX LEVY ON REAL ESTATE FOR TAX YEAR 2025 AND ON PERSONAL PROPERTY, MACHINERY AND TOOLS AND ALL OTHER PROPERTY SEGREGATED BY


The proposed real estate tax rate for the tax year beginning July 1, 2024 is:

$1.22 upon each $100.00 of assessed value of real estate in the City of Falls Church, which is a $0.01 (0.80%) decrease from the current tax rate.

The proposed tax rate for tangible personal property, and machinery and tools, and all other property segregated by law for the tax year beginning January 1, 2024 are:

• $5.00 upon each $100.00 of assessed value on tangible personal property, and machinery and tools, and all other property segregated by law for local taxation within the City, including the property separately classified by § 58.1-3500 et seq. of the Code of Virginia, which is no change from the current rate;

• $4.80 upon each $100 of assessed value for vehicles classified under § 58.1-3506.A.48.a through 58.1-3506.A.48.d shall be levied at a rate of $4.80 upon each $100 of assessed value, which is no change from the current rate; and pursuant to § 58.1-2606 of the Code of Virginia, a portion of assessed value of tangible personal property of public service corporations shall be taxed at the real estate rate.


Under the legal authority granted by VA § 15.22114, an increase to the City stormwater utility unit billing rate from $20.05 per 200 square feet of impervious surface (billing unit) to $20.77 per billing unit annually is proposed, effective July 1, 2024, which would constitute an increase of 3.6% per billing unit.


Under the legal authority granted by VA §15.22119, Sewer rates and fees are proposed as follows: an increase to the sewer commodity rate from $10.48 per thousand gallons of water billed (billing unit) to $10.86 is proposed, effective July 1, 2024, which would constitute an increase of 3.6% per billing unit. an increase to sewer availability charges from $8,860 to $9,746 for single-family dwellings and detached and semi-detached duplexes or townhouses; from $7,088 to $7,797 for apartment or condominium buildings; from $2,215 to $2,437 for motel, hotel units; and from $443 to $487 for each drainage fixture unit for commercial, industrial, and other uses. All public hearings will be held in the Council Chambers, 300 Park Avenue, Falls Church, Virginia. Remote participation information at www.fallschurchva.gov/publiccomment. Comments may also be sent to cityclerk@fallschurchva.gov. For copies of legislation, contact the City Clerk’s office at (703-248-5014) or cityclerk@fallschurchva.gov or visit www. fallschurchva.gov/councilmeetings. The City of Falls Church is committed to the letter and spirit of the Americans with Disabilities Act. To request a reasonable accommodation for any type of disability, call 703-248-5014 (TTY 711).




The following was given first reading at the April 29, 2024 City Council meeting. A public hearing, second reading, and possible City Council action is scheduled for Tuesday, May 28, 2024 at 7:30 p.m., or as soon thereafter as the matter may be heard.



This action would amend the City’s floodplain district boundaries of the Zoning Map to meet the floodplain boundaries set by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and National Floodplain Insurance Program (NFIP).

This action would add the following properties to the floodplain district on June 6, 2024: (51-116-041) 6936 N 26TH ST (51-117-002) 6947 N FOUR MILE RUN DR (51-116-042) 6935 N 26TH ST (51-116-018) 6933 N 26TH ST (51-101-012) 214 W JEFFERSON ST (51-101-010) 114 W JEFFERSON ST (51-101-019) 537 N WASHINGTON ST (53-101-120) GRESHAM PL (52-205-017) 402 TIMBER LN (53-101-073) 500 E JEFFERSON ST (53-101-005) 507 E COLUMBIA (52-402-039) 219 W CAMERON RD (52-312-100) 410 S MAPLE AVE (53-208-015) 408 VAN BUREN ST

This action would remove the following properties from the floodplain district on June 6, 2024: (52-106-007) 1013 KENNEDY ST (52-608-030) 310 KENT ST (52-608-029) 309 KENT ST (52-608-028) 308 KENT ST (52-608-005) 600 RANDOLPH ST (52-206-025) 139 LEA CT (52-206-054) 212 S OAK ST (52-302-281) 146 REES PL (52-602-020) 519 S SPRING ST (52-602-019) 521 S SPRING ST (52-302-276) 156 REES PL (52-302-036) 211 S LEE ST (52-302-012) 422 SHERROW AVE

All public hearings will be held in the Council Chambers, 300 Park Avenue, Falls Church, Virginia. Remote participation information at www.fallschurchva.gov/publiccomment. Comments may also be sent to cityclerk@fallschurchva.gov. For copies of legislation, contact the City Clerk’s office at (703-248-5014) or cityclerk@fallschurchva.gov or visit www. fallschurchva.gov/councilmeetings. The City of Falls Church is committed to the letter and spirit of the Americans with Disabilities Act. To request a reasonable accommodation for any type of disability, call 703-248-5014 (TTY 711).


Malpa Inc, trading as Pulcinella Italian Host 1310 Chain Bridge Rd., McLean Va 22101 is applying to the Virginia ABC board for a Beer and Wine and mixed beverage and Specialty

Liqueur License. Hassan Boussouf, Owner / Manager as Authorized Signatory. NOTE: Objections to the issuance of this license must be submitted to ABC no later than 30 days from the publishing date of the first of 2 required newspaper legal notice. Objections should be registered at www.abc.virginia.gov or 800-552-3200

Pho 85 LLC, trading as Pho 85, 2952 Chain Bridge Road Ste. D., Oakton Va. 22124 is applying to the Virginia ABC board for an On and Off Premises Beer and Wine License. Hieu Van Nguyen, Managing Member as Authorized Signatory. NOTE: Objections to the issuance of this license must be submitted to ABC no later than 30 days from the publishing date of the first of 2 required newspaper legal notice. Objections should be registered at www.abc. virginia.gov or 800-552-3200

54 Fair City Mall LLC, trading as 54 Restaurant Bar & Lounge, 9650 Main Street Unit 10, Fairfax, VA 22031 is applying to the Virginia ABC board for an On and Off Premises Beer and Wine License. Tien Ha Nguyen, Managing Member as Authorized Signatory. NOTE: Objections to the issuance of this license must be submitted to ABC no later than 30 days from the publishing date of the first of 2 required newspaper legal notice. Objections should be registered at www.abc.virginia.gov or 800-552-3200

Seoul Prime, LLC, trading as Seoul Prime, 106 Founders Avenue, Falls Church, VA 22046 is applying to the

Virginia ABC board for a BEER , WINE, AND Mixed Beverage on Premises. Lee, Wan Bok / Managing Member as Authorized Signatory. NOTE: Objections to the issuance of this license must be submitted to ABC no later than 30 days from the publishing date of the first of 2 required newspaper legal notice. Objections should be registered at www.abc.virginia.gov or 800-552-3200 MUSIC GOT JAZZ? Develop your creative self in an established studio for Piano, Bass and Drums. www.PianoJazz.com 703-489-8704 Continued on Page 18 MAY 9 - 15, 2024 | PAGE 17 FALLS CHURCH NEWS-PRESS | FCNP.COM CLASSIFIEDS Other ServiceS House Cleaning Ser vice Avaliable 7 days a week Weekly - B Weekly - Monthly or One time Jobs Move out - Move in 28 years Experience • Good references • Free Estimates For Information Call Susy 703-901-0596 Doug's Handyman Service Interior/Exterior Repairs FREE Estimates Licensed, Bonded & Insured Call: 703-556-4276 www.fallschurchhandyman.com Gagnon’s Gutterworks CLEANING/INSTALLATION/REPAIR LICENSED & INSURED POWER WASHING WWW.GAGNONSGUTTERWORKS.COM New Gutter Installation, Gutter Cleaning and more Lawn Care Services Mowing, Weed Control, Seeding Power Washing - Whole House Roof Cleaning, Concrete, Siding and Decks Free Estimaes Licensed and Insured, ALL Work Guaraneed Senior Citizen Discount $5.00 O for First Time Customers (Mention This Ad) SERVING NORTHERN VIRGINIA TGGUTTERS@YAHOO.COM 703-716-0377 OR 571-421-3663 LAWN & LANDSCAPE SERVICE Call Gabriel - 703-546-6383 References • Free Estimates Complete Lawn and Landscaping Service Spring Cleanup, Flowers and Mulching Lawncare Service • Tree Sevice • Leaf Removal cleaning ServiceS handyman gutterwOrkS landScaping

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AUCTIONS ATTN. AUCTIONEERS: Advertise your upcoming auctions statewide and in other states. Affordable Print and Digital Solutions reaching your target audiences. Call this paper or Landon Clark at Virginia Press Services 804-521-7576, landonc@vpa.net FISH/FARMS Live Fish for stocking ponds. Many varieties available. Delivery to your pond or pickup available. Call Zetts Fish Farm & Hatchery for information 304-995-9202, Cell 304-820-6986. HOME IMPROVEMENT Vinyl Replacement Windows Installed! Starting at $350 Call 804-739-8207 for More Details! Ronnie Jenkins II Windows, Siding, Roofing and Gutters! FREE Estimates! Call 804-739-8207 for More Details! American Made Products! Prepare for power outages today with a Generac Home Standby Generator. Act now to receive a FREE 7-Year warranty with qualifying purchase. Call 1-844-947-1479 today to schedule a free quote. It’s not just a generator. It’s a power move. Replace your roof with the best looking and longest lasting material steel from Erie Metal Roofs! Three styles and multiple colors available. Guaranteed to last a lifetime! Limited Time Offer up to 50% off installation + Additional 10% off install (for military, health workers & 1st responders.) Call Erie Metal Roofs: 1-844-902-4611 Eliminate gutter cleaning forever! LeafFilter, the most advanced debris-blocking gutter protection. Schedule a FREE LeafFilter estimate today. 20% off Entire Purchase. Plus 10% Senior & Military Discounts. Call 1-877-614-6667 The bathroom of your dreams in as little as 1 day. Limited Time Offer - $1000 off or No Payments and No Interest for 18
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N.Va. Gay Bar Draws 200 to ‘Love In’ to Counter Haters

FREDDIE’S BEACH BAR and restaurant just down the road from Falls Church, the only openly LGBTQ+ gathering place in Northern Virginia, welcomed hundreds of patrons and supporters to a 1969-like “Love In” last Saturday in reaction to a spate harassment by haters who recently called in a bomb threat and have demonstrated outside the establishment. When three who claimed they were from a “non-denominational church” in Northern Virginia did so this Saturday, a phalanx of pro-gay supporters calling themselves the Rainbow Defense Coalition, stood in front of them with open rainbow-colored umbrellas to diminish their impact. Terre Hoot, a comedian drag performer from Indiana, led a book reading at the event, hosted by Freddie Lutz, popular owner of Freddies. Supporters in attendance included State Sen. Barbara Favola, Commonwealth Attorney Parisa Deghani-Tafti, State Del. Adele McClure, Arlington County board member Maureen Coffee, reporter Lou Chibarro of the Washington Blade and the News-Press’ Nicholas Benton. (News-Press Photos)

FALLS CHURCH NEWS-PRESS | FCNP.COM PAGE 20 | MAY 9 - 15, 2024 3BR/3.5BA Brick Tudor located in an idyllic setting in a quiet neighborhood, loaded w/ character & charm throughout. Updates/additions to Primary Bedroom Suite & spacious Kitchen give a perfect balance between the original and new areas of the Home! Cathedral ceilings in Living Room, Kitchen & main level Primary Bedroom suite. Hardwood Flooring, knotty pine walls, 2 wood burning fireplaces, and private courtyard patio. Only a mile to East Falls Church Metro Station. Offered at $1,275,000. Matt Earman (703) 328-4563 Matt@EarmanRealEstate.com Chris Earman Member NVAR Residential Top Producer Club Weichert, RealtorsChairman of the Board Club (703) 628-4541 Chris@EarmanRealEstate.com Your Local Falls Church Realtor • 703-760-8880 • Falls Church/McLean If you are looking to Buy, Sell, or Rent in 2024 or 2025 please call Chris or Matt for a No Obligation consultation. Member: NVAR Residential Top Producer Club Weichert, RealtorsAmbassadors Club COMING SOON! 4BR/2.5BA Farmhouse * Falls Church City Rental: 4BR/2.5BA Rambler * Falls Church City 3BR/3BA in Fawn Lake * Spotsylvania HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY!! OPENSAT2-4 OPENSAT12-2 201 Cleave Dr * Falls Church City First Time Buyers Ask about our $5,000 Grant Program Falls Church City Teachers & Employees 6027 Brook Dr * Falls Church 4122 Uline Ave * Alexandria Well maintained expanded rambler with 4BR/2.5BA on three levels. Main Level has two bedrooms, Living Room, Kitchen w/ room for small table, bump out w/ Family Room, plus full bathroom & Hardwood Flooring. Upper level has two bedrooms w/ full bathroom. Lower Level Rec Room with Wet Bar & powder room. Offered at $675,000. Top Floor 1BD/1BA in the Westview at Ballston Condo. Less than 1/4 mile to Ballston Metro, bus stops, shopping and dining. Hardwood floors, brand new HVAC, water heater & Refrigerator, plus easy access to rooftop pool. Offered at $379,000. Todd Wuehrmann Weichert REALTORS® TWuehrmann@gmail.com • cell (703) 447-9503 1024 N Utah St., #914 * Arlington Jean Reid • (703) 336-3808 • jeanreid@weichert.com COMINGSOON COMINGSOON 5BR/3BA Split Foyer Rambler in Munson Hill neighborhood of 7-Corners. Upper Level has Living/Dining Combo with beautiful hardwood floors. Kitchen, 3 Bedrooms plus 2 Bathrooms. Lower Level has large Family room w/ Brick Fireplace, two bedrooms, full bathroom plus laundry room & utility room. Rear Deck overlooks Private backyard. Offered at $845,000.

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