Castro Property Still a Farm
<bt>The Castro property on Chapel Road in the Clifton area is still a farm as far as the Fairfax County Planning Commission is concerned. At its Oct. 26 meeting, the commission voted to recommend approval of continuing to consider the 118-acre area an Agricultural and Forestal District.
In an effort to preserve the few remaining bits of farm and forest land in the county, these districts, which must be at least 20 acres in size, are granted a break on property taxes. If the owner should later wish to rezone the property for a more intense use, such as building houses, the property is subject to back taxes. Since the inception of such districts, 56 have been established across the county. Seven of these have been subsequently withdrawn. An eighth, Belmont Bay, was converted to a “District of Statewide Significance” in 1993. Two more may soon drop off the list — the Moutoux property was recently rezoned for houses and the Salona property may soon be used as a park.
The Castro property was established as a farm in July 1997 for an eight-year period. If approved, this would allow the land to be considered a farm for another eight-year period.
A public hearing is scheduled before the Board of Supervisors on Dec. 5.
Another Clifton-area property was also recommended to retain the designation. The Podolnick property, 107 acres at the corner of Yates Ford and Evans Ford roads, is a forested area. According to the Planning Commission staff report, the property dates back to a land grant in 1716. The area was established as a forestall district in 1989 and renewed in 1997.
If approved, this would allow the land to be considered an Agricultural and Forestal District for another eight-year period. A public hearing is scheduled before the Board of Supervisors on Nov. 21.
<sh>Workshop for Katrina Responders
<bt>The Fairfax-Falls Church Community Services Board, Fairfax County government and Fairfax Families Care are sponsor "After Katrina Workshop: A Toolkit for Responding to Trauma," on Wednesday, Nov. 9, from 9 a.m.-12 p.m., in the first floor conference room of Fairfax County's Regional Human Services Office, 6245 Leesburg Pike, Falls Church.
Helen Fitzgerald, a grief specialist and author of books and articles on personal loss, grieving and mourning, will be on hand, with other local caregivers, to address common ways people of all ages react to trauma, strategies for coping with grief and loss, symptoms of traumatic stress, approaches to help others cope, how to transition into a new job or school, stress management for caregivers and host families, and much more.
Free child care will be provided on site by Fairfax County. To register, call the Fairfax-Falls Church Community Services Board Alcohol and Drug Training Line by Monday, Nov. 7, at 703-934-8753, TTY 711. For more information, contact Dr. Jim Stratoudakis at 703-324-7020, TTY 711, or firstname.lastname@example.org.