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Schools to Expand by $856 Million

Capital Improvement Plan approved, rising enrollment causes concerns about classroom space.

Five more school buildings and renovations for several existing ones may be approved by 2020. The Fairfax County School Board approved the $856 million Capital Improvement Program (CIP) at the Jan. 22 meeting to set priority on the projects the school system wants done in the next five years.

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Outlook: Downtown Herndon Takes Shape

Washington and Old Dominion Trail to become “centerpiece,” says mayor.

This year will be all about creating a livelier, more energetic downtown. The town council will take their plans to make the historic area more business-friendly from resolutions to reality this year.

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McLean Festival Finds a Sweet Spot

Chocolate Festival gets ‘smoother and smoother’ every year.

Chocolate covered bacon, chocolate covered marshmallows, chocolate gelato... And the list goes on. The fourth annual McLean Rotary Chocolate Festival attracted hundreds of sweet tooths to the community on Sunday, Jan. 25, to indulge in their favorite treats.

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Referendum for Reston Land Purchase

Former Visitor Center property could be bought back.

A referendum for a parcel of land north of the Dulles Toll Road is being put forth by Reston Association. The parcel, owned by Tetra Properties, will be sold to Reston Association after a voting process that ends in May.

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Reston National Golf Stays the Course - for Now

Appeal decision to be announced April 15.

Julie Bitzer moved to a home near the Reston National Golf Course so she can indulge in her favorite past time as often as she likes. “I’m a golfer,” she said. “I was ecstatic I could live at and see the golf course and the open space.” With a home that faces the expansive greens of the 18-hole course, she felt her lifestyle and home were at risk when RN Golf - owned by Northwestern Mutual - appealed the Fairfax County Planning and Zoning staff’s decision that the course could not be converted to a residential area. She was not the only one to be concerned by the appeal.

Arlington: Host Washington-Lee Wins Barbara Reinwald Invitational

W-L, Yorktown to compete with McLean for regional berths.

The Washington-Lee gymnastics team won its invitational meet on Saturday.

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Outlook: Reston Master Plan Takes Shape

Village Center updates, national golf course appeal mean big decisions.

Restonians may see their ideas become resolutions on paper this year. Community leaders are saying residents can look forward to new village center plans, the beginnings of a new Lake Anne Village Center and a decision on whether Reston National Golf Course wins the appeal on residential zoning.

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Great Falls Outlook: Facing Hot Issues

Keeping up-to-date on toxic plume, deer management, Turner Farm House, Route 7.

Great Falls residents will see the results of past resolutions and actions in the next 12 months. Community leaders said the biggest topics the village will discuss this year include deer management, the Route 7 expansion and possible Independence Day fireworks.

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McLean Outlook: Developing the Community

Completion of community centers, pedestrian improvements.

McLean community leaders will be busy this year. Between the looming pedestrian improvements and downtown development residents have a lot to look forward to.

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Great Falls: Langley Girls' Basketball Team on a Roll

Hard-nosed defense, Coach Baker’s preparation key during 13-1 start.

The Langley girls' basketball team defeated Langley 44-25 on Jan. 23 to improve to 13-1.

Strategy to Succeed

Students master their own learning styles to overcome challenges.

Students who have learning and financial challenges often also face challenges getting into and attending college.

College Prep for All

The ANA Project offers college test preparation tools to students at all income levels.

Amir Mousavi of Arlington, owner of Langley Prep, a provider of private, in-home tutoring for standardized tests, says students with limited financial resources are often at a disadvantage when it comes to preparing for college admissions examinations such as the SAT and the ACT.

Commentary: Addressing Sex Trafficking in Northern Virginia

Four years ago, I introduced my first piece of legislation to address an issue that I thought happened everywhere but here in Northern Virginia; sex trafficking. According to the Polaris Project, a leading organization in the global fight against human trafficking, over 100,000 children are victims of the sex trade in the United States each year. The Polaris Project ranks Virginia 7th in the nation in the percentage of calls received reporting human trafficking.

Puller Will Not Seek Re-election

Just as the Virginia General Assembly kicked off its 2015 January session, state Sen. Linda T. “Toddy” Puller (D-36) announced her decision to not run for re-election later this year. “It has been one of the greatest honors of my life to serve the people of the 36th district in the Senate of Virginia,” Puller said in a Jan. 14 statement. “Now, with the encouragement, love and support of my family I have made the decision to step down.”

Editorial: Baby Steps, Not Enough

Supervisors should take action, not defer to “outside expert,” on absurd and outrageous behavior of police department.

Finally, now that the Fairfax County Police Department has taken stonewalling into the arena of the absurd, the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors has at least said it is time for change. It is a step, but a step that continues the appearance of obfuscation if not outright obstruction.

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Computers, Radios, Vehicles, Firearms Center Renovation

Pardiny makes his pitch for budget funds.

Everyone wants a piece of the City of Fairfax budget pie, including the Police Department. Below are some of the items its leader requested during a Dec. 2 joint work session of the City Council and Planning Commission. The first thing on Police Chief Carl Pardiny’s FY 2016 CIP list was money for information technology. “We’re replacing the department’s 22 servers and office computers, plus the mobile laptops used by the officers in their cruisers,” he said.

Two Years Probation for Fairfax Resident

Created phony stamps; defrauded Postal Service.

A local man has been sentenced to two years probation and ordered to pay tens of thousands of dollars in restitution to the U.S. Postal Service. He is Brian Kim, 38, of Fairfax. This past summer, he pleaded guilty in federal court to defrauding the U.S. Postal Service. He admitted doing so by counterfeiting and selling approximately $76,000 in postage stamps at two packaging centers he owned and operated in Northern Virginia. One’s in Fairfax and the other is in Arlington.

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Burke Sweethearts Take the Long Road to the Altar

Chris Rowson, Kellie McDonald engaged.

Chris Rowson, 29, and Kellie McDonald, 27, from Burke, got engaged on Saturday, Jan. 17 at Fairview Elementary School in Fairfax Station, where the couple were both students. McDonald was in shock when Rowson proposed, as she had suspected that he would do it in February during a planned trip to Florida. But despite being “taken off guard,” she said that it could not have been a more perfect time and place.

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Board of Supervisors Recognizes Global Arts Initiative

On Tuesday, Jan. 13, the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors recognized the Arts Council of Fairfax County for its new Global Arts Initiative for which the organization received an Arts Works grant from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA).

Filler-Corn Announces Legislative Agenda

Del. Eileen Filler-Corn (D-41) recently unveiled the legislation she has introduced for consideration by the 2014 General Assembly. Among Delegate Filler-Corn’s legislative priorities are education, public and campus safety, workforce development, childcare safety, creating the new Virginia economy and looking out for our seniors.

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