Week in Herndon

Week in Herndon

Worker Site Driveway Shift

A new year means change and for Herndon's Official Workers Center, change is a constant occurrence.

To mark the first day of 2006, Herndon officials shut down the entrance to the site from Rock Hill Road. All vehicles entering the official workers' site must now enter from Sterling Road.

The entrance to the site was closed in response to a Dec. 15 zoning decision by the Loudoun County Board of Zoning Appeals. During the hearing the county zoning administrator told board members the site's use was in violation of Loudoun County zoning laws. The parcel of land in question is partially in Loudoun County and partially in the Town of Herndon. While the day-labor site rests entirely in Herndon, the zoning administrator indicated that and the other uses on site, including the recycling center and access to the department of Public Works building, do not have the proper Loudoun County permits to operate.

Following the zoning determination, Kirby Bowers, Loudoun county administrator sent a letter to Steve Owen, town manager, asking for the town's compliance with the ruling.

"I am asking that the town and the operator of the assembly site cease that use and honor the decision of the Board of Zoning Appeals, pending any further judicial action by the town," Bowers said in the Dec. 19 letter.

He went on to request the town "apply for a special exception" from Loudoun County to be able to use the Rock Hill Road entrance for the Publics Works facilities and the recycling center, but not the day worker hiring site.

"It would go a long way to show good faith and interjurisdictional comity if the town voluntarily complies with the Board of Zoning Appeals' ruling pending any further legal action it may wish to pursue," the letter stated. "Otherwise, the only option left for the county will be to take action to enforce its zoning regulations."

As requested, the town moved the entrance to the new hiring center from Rock Hill Road to Sterling Road, according to Owen. But, they will not cease hiring operations because the center operates entirely on Town of Herndon land. To inform employers of the move, a bilingual sign has been posted at the Rock Hill Road entrance. No other means to block the entrance has been taken.

The town is in the process of applying for the proper Loudoun County zoning permits to use the Rock Hill Road entrance for the recycling center and Public Works department building, according to Owen.

Teens Charged for Graffiti

Offices from the Fairfax County Police's Reston District Station have charged two juveniles with spray painting gang related graffiti in the Herndon area. One of the suspects spray painted a pool house in the 1600 block of Hiddenbrook Drive on July 16, 2005. The other suspect spray painted a mailbox in the 12700 block of Builders Road on Aug. 28, 2005. Police reports allege the two teens committed the following crimes together:

* Aug. 29, 2005, spray painted a fence at 1700 block of Fantasia Drive;

* Aug. 30, 2005, spray painted windows, doors and wall of Clearview Elementary School, 12600 block of Builders Road

* Aug. 31, 2005, spray painted a sidewalk at 1300 block of Sadler Wells Drive;

* Aug. 31, 2005, spray painted a sidewalk at 1600 block of Permit Court;

* Sept. 2, 2005, spray painted a street at Permit Court.

On Dec. 27, police obtained petitions against both boys in connection with these cases. A 15-year-old Herndon boy was charged with six counts of destruction of property and two counts of gang participation. A 16-year-old Herndon-area boy was charged with six counts of destruction of property.

Northern Virginia Ethical Society

On Jan. 8, lawyer Elaine Cassel will speak at the Northern Virginia Ethical Society on ways individuals can challenge threats to their rights and liberties. Cassel practices law in Virginia and the District of Columbia, teaches law and psychology, and maintains a Web site devoted to current threats to American civil liberties and the Constitution called "Civil Liberties Watch." She is the author of "The War on Civil Liberties: How Bush and Ashcroft Have Dismantled the Bill of Rights" (Lawrence Hill Books 2004). Free. Begins 11 a.m. at 225 Nutley St., NW, Vienna. For information about NoVES, visit www.noves.org or call 703-437-3161.

New Channels for Cox Communications

Cox Communications in Northern Virginia introduced five new channels to its programming lineup Dec. 15, 2005 for customers in Fairfax County and the Fredericksburg region. The new networks, which are available to all Cox Digital Cable customers, are as follows:

* PBS Kids Sprout. features program favorites like "Barney," "Mister Rogers" and "Teletubbies." PBS Kids Sprout will be offered on Cox Digital Cable channel 217.

* NBC Weather Plus. This combines national and local weather coverage with in-depth, live reports throughout the day from local meteorologists. When viewers tune into NBC Weather Plus, the network's distinctive "L Bar" on the perimeter of the screen provides current temperatures and forecasts in real time, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. NBC Weather Plus will be featured on Cox Digital Cable channel 803.

* VH1 Soul. This channel offers 24 hours of the latest soul and rhythm and blues hits from today and the 90s, featuring popular artists like Mary J. Blige, Usher, Brandy and D'Angelo. VH1 Soul will be featured on channel 215.

* MTV Jams. An American hip-hop/urban music video channel, it offers videos all day, every day. MTV Jams will be featured on channel 216.

* Logo. This is MTV Networks' channel for the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender audience, providing a mix of original and acquired entertainment. Logo features a vast library of major film titles, documentaries, news coverage, and original shows and specials. Logo will be featured on Cox Digital Cable channel 214.

More information about Cox Communications can be accessed at www.cox.com.

Town Calendar

Saturday, Jan. 7

Cultural Arts Series, Industrial Strength Theatre, 8 p.m.

Monday, Jan. 9, 7:30 p.m.

Planning Commission public hearing

Tuesday, Jan. 10, 7:30 p.m.

Town Council public hearing

Wednesday, Jan. 11, 7 p.m.

Neighborhood College Alumni Group