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Votes

Centre View Roundups March 1-7

Route 50 East Third Lane Reopens

VDOT will re-open the third lane on eastbound Route 50 between Stonecroft Boulevard and Route 28 which closed to traffic last weekend as part of the Route 50 widening project in Fairfax and Loudoun counties. The one-mile lane closure has caused lengthy delays on eastbound Route 50 and surrounding roads, this week, during the morning rush. The lane will re-open by March 5, weather permitting.

“We dropped the ball on this one and I apologize to motorists,” said Garrett Moore, VDOT’s District Administrator for Northern Virginia. “We did not communicate the planned closure and, as a result, motorists have been stuck in lengthy delays throughout the morning rush.”

Construction began last fall to widen Route 50 from four to six lanes between Poland Road in Loudoun County and Route 28 in Fairfax County. When the 3.7-mile, $100 million design-build project is complete at the end of 2014, motorists will have three lanes in each direction, improved turn lanes and traffic signals, curb and gutter on the outside lanes, crosswalks and pedestrian signals, widened and upgraded bridges, and pathways on both sides of the road. The road will also be more level and provide wider buffers between travel lanes and roadside hazards.

Shelter Needs Foster Parents

The Fairfax County Animal Shelter is looking for people interested in helping save the lives of puppies, kittens, turtles and an assortment of other animals housed at the shelter. So it’s holding a special orientation session for citizens interested in learning more about its animal foster-care program.

It will be held Tuesday, March 6, from 7-9 p.m., at the shelter at 4500 West Ox Road in Fairfax. And it’s part of the shelter’s second annual “Become a Foster Parent Month,” which runs through the end of March. To attend, people should RSVP to kathleen.cornell@fairfaxcounty.gov.

Foster-care providers save animals’ lives by providing temporary care in their homes for some of the shelter’s neediest animals. No special experience is required to become a foster, and the shelter provides training, supplies and medical care for the animals.

Foster-care providers must be 21 years or older and must go through the shelter’s volunteer process, including a background check and home visit. Each year, the shelter places 300-400 animals into foster care. During the summer, most are kittens and cats. However, there’s also a great need for short-term care for dogs and puppies, as well as kittens under 4 weeks old needing to be bottle fed. For more information, e-mail kathleen.cornell@fairfaxcounty.gov.

Free Carseat Inspections

Certified technicians from the Sully District Police Station will perform free, child safety carseat inspections Thursday, March 8, and March 22, from 5-8:30 p.m., at the station, 4900 Stonecroft Blvd. in Chantilly. No appointment is necessary. But residents should install the child safety seats themselves so technicians may properly inspect and adjust them, as needed.

However, because of time constraints, only the first 35 vehicles arriving on each date will be inspected. That way, inspectors may have enough time to properly instruct the caregiver on the correct use of the child seat. Call 703-814-7000, ext. 5140, to confirm dates and times. More than 1,000 people had carseats checked and adjusted there in 2011.

Seeking Friends of Trees

Trish Strat, the Sully District Tree Commissioner, is seeking candidates for the Fairfax County "Friends of Trees" award. Information and the nomination form are at

http://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/dpwes/environmental/2011_friends_of_trees_award_nomination_form.pdf.

Meals on Wheels Volunteers

Fairfax County needs Meals on Wheels drivers in Chantilly and group Meals on Wheels coordinators in both Chantilly and Fairfax. Contact Volunteer Solutions at 703-324-5406, TTY 711, VolunteerSolutions@fairfaxcounty.gov or visit www.fairfaxcounty.gov/dfs/olderadultservices/volunteer-solutions.htm.

Free Income Tax Preparation

People who worked in 2011 and earned less than $50,000 may qualify for free, income-tax preparation. It’s available Saturdays, through April 14, from 10 a.m.-12:30 p.m., at the Chantilly Regional Library, 4000 Stringfellow Road in Chantilly. If married and filing a joint return, both spouses must be present. For a list of items participants must bring with them, go to www.nvacash.org and click on “free tax preparation.”

WFCM Seeks Food, Volunteers

Western Fairfax Christian Ministries’ (WFCM) food pantry urgently needs donations of oil (48 oz. or smaller); flour (2-5 lb. bag); sugar (2-5 lb. bag); canned meats; juice (64 oz. or smaller); jelly; jam; canned fruit; canned beets, spinach, greens, potatoes and mixed vegetables; pancake mix and syrup; mayonnaise, baby food (stages 1 and 3); cocoa, coffee, ketchup and mustard. Also needed is laundry detergent.

Bring all items to WFCM’S food pantry at 13981 Metrotech Drive (near Backyard Grill and Bar) in Chantilly. Volunteers are also needed:

Thrift store: General assistance needed Mondays, Tuesdays and Fridays, from 9 a.m.-6 p.m. A regular weekly volunteer is needed Thursdays, from 1-6 p.m., as well as Saturdays, from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. For more information, contact Volunteer Manager Annette Bosley at 703-988-9656.

Furniture ministry: One person is needed to help move furniture that will be given to clients in need.