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Week in Loudoun

<sh>Fatal Hit and Run

<bt>A 33-year-old Sterling man was killed early last Sunday on Sully Road (Route 28) when the motor scooter he was riding was struck from behind.

The victim, Harold Francis Blewitt, III of Sterling, was pronounced dead at the scene. He was traveling northbound on Route 28 just south of Nokes Boulevard when a 1990 Ford Probe struck the motor scooter. The driver of the suspect vehicle left the scene.

Around an hour after the incident the driver of the Ford, 24-year-old Larry Arnold of Sterling, returned to the scene. He has been charged with driving under the influence, involuntary manslaughter and felony hit and run. He is being held at the Loudoun Adult Detention Center without bond.

The accident remains under investigation by members of the Sheriff's Office Accident Reconstruction Unit. Witnesses to the accident are asked to contact DFC Garis at 703-771-5798.

The accident, which occurred around 2 a.m. closed Route 28 northbound for nearly six hours.

<sh>Listening to Seniors

<bt>The newly elected board members from Sugarland Run District, D.M. “Mick” Staton Jr. (R), and the Potomac District, Bruce E. Tulloch (R), will be at the Loudoun County Senior Center at Cascades Marketplace, 21060 Whitfield Place, Sterling, on Tuesday, Dec. 9 at 1:30 p.m. to talk about issues facing seniors in Loudoun County.

All seniors are invited. Contact the Senior Center at 703-430-2397 for directions or questions.

<sh>County Releases Annual Report

<bt>Loudoun County has published its 2003 Annual Report. The 28-page, illustrated report highlights the county's accomplishments during the fiscal year of July 1, 2002, to June 30, 2003. The report reviews the major issues of the year, including adoption of comprehensive revisions to the county's Zoning Ordinance, a major step in the implementation of the Revised Comprehensive Plan adopted by the Board of Supervisors in 2001. The report also provides an update on the Board's vision for the county, presents information about the county's finances and demographics, and reviews the top issues for the Loudoun County Public Schools.

Among the statistics for Fiscal Year 2003 (FY03) presented in the report:

* User sessions on the county's Web site, www.loudoun.gov, increased from 1.5 million to more than 2 million.

* The Department of Building and Development conducted 278,299 building inspections, up from 249,810 in FY 02.

* Calls for service from the Sheriff's Office increased from 132,649 in FY 02 to 143,191.

* The Loudoun County Public Library circulated more than 2.2 million books, CDs, videos, and magazines.

Copies of the report are available by contacting the Loudoun County Public Information Office at 703-777-0113 or by e-mail at pivs@loudoun.gov. The report is also available on the county's Web site at www.loudoun.gov/government/report.htm. Copies will be available at county library branches.

<sh>Program Receives Recognition

<bt>Loudoun County's home sharing program, Operation Match, has received statewide recognition. Operation Match was named "Best Housing Program" when the Virginia Housing Awards were presented at the Governor's Housing Conference on Nov. 13.

Operation Match offers choices to people who might otherwise have limited options. The program provides an opportunity for individuals who want to share their homes with someone in need of a place to live. Home sharing offers advantages to both parties, including extra income and reduced housing costs.

Since the inception of the program in 2000, Operation Match has helped 300 applicants locate affordable housing. For more information on the program, visit www.loudoun.gov/housing or call 703-777-0389.

<sh>Sign Workshop

<bt>The Loudoun County Department of Economic Development is sponsoring a Wayfinding Workshop to be held on Wednesday, Dec. 10, from 8:30-10 a.m. in the Board of Supervisors Meeting Room, Loudoun County Government Center, 1 Harrison Street SE, Leesburg. "Wayfinding" is a network of directional signs designed to guide people from major transportation gateways and along major corridors to key visitor, cultural, recreational, civic, and commercial destinations within a community. The Department is undertaking the effort in partnership with the Loudoun Convention and Visitors Association.

<sh>Woman Dies in Tractor Accident

<bt>A Purcellville woman died from injuries she sustained after she was run over by a tractor Nov. 20 around 4:30 p.m.

Beverly Ruybalid, 43, was working on an International 424 tractor in the 18400 block of Lincoln Road when she dismounted the vehicle to adjust a grader. The tractor, which was stopped on an incline, began to roll striking the victim.

The victim was airlifted to Inova Fairfax Hospital where she died from her injuries in the early morning hours of Nov. 21.

The accident remains under investigation by the Loudoun County Sheriff's Office.

<sh>LINK Holiday Program

<bt>LINK is asking for donations of non-perishable food items, $10-$25 grocery store gift certificates and new toys and gifts for children of all ages for needy families in the Herndon, Sterling and Ashburn areas. An estimated 350 families (1,500 people) are projected to receive Christmas Baskets this year.

LINK's annual Christmas Basket program kicks off on Saturday, Dec. 20 with events taking place from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. at Christ the Redeemer Catholic in Sterling (groceries) and Herndon United Methodist in Herndon (toys and gifts).

Volunteers can register and families can qualify for groceries, food certificates and toys by calling the LINK Hot Line at 703-437-1776.

<sh>Meeting on Purcellville

<bt>The public input session on the update of the Purcellville Urban Growth Area Management Plan is rescheduled for Saturday, Dec. 6. Details regarding format, time and location will be announced later.

The Joint Policies Review Committee will meet Dec. 16, at 5 p.m. at the Town office to discuss input from the earlier public work sessions. Comments from the sessions have been compiled and are available online at www.loudoun.gov/compplan/purcellville.htm.

The Town of Purcellville and Loudoun County are in the process of updating the Purcellville Urban Growth Area Management Plan, which contains land use goals and priorities for the area surrounding Purcellville's corporate limits. The area is known as the Joint Land Management Area (JLMA) and is jointly planned by the town and county.

<sh>Probate Information Online

<bt>The Loudoun Circuit Court Clerk's Office has expanded the online information available about probate, allowing citizens to easily obtain information about the probate of wills and estates in Loudoun County. The information is available at www.loudoun.gov/clerk. It includes procedures, frequently asked questions, probate forms, a probate glossary and guardianship/conservator procedures.