News

23 displaced by apartment fire in Triangle

A fire broke out on Kilmer Lane in Triangle.
A fire broke out on Kilmer Lane in Triangle.
A fire broke out on Kilmer Lane in Triangle.
A fire broke out on Kilmer Lane in Triangle.
A fire broke out on Kilmer Lane in Triangle.
A fire broke out on Kilmer Lane in Triangle.

Late in the evening on April 28, Prince William fire and rescue responders were dispatched to a fire at in an apartment on Kilmer Lane in Triangle.

When responders arrived, they saw smoke coming from the roof of the apartment building, said Prince William fire and rescue.

According to a fire and rescue release, the firefighters entered the building and extinguished the fire – finding no extensions of the flames in other areas.

Many residents were in the building at the time of the incident, and were evacuated safely from the building. One individual escaped from the building by jumping out of third-story window, and was later transported to an area medical facility for non-life threatening injuries, said Prince William fire and rescue.

Additionally, one firefighter on the scene was transported for medical treatment as a precautionary measure, but was released, said Prince William fire and rescue.

The Red Cross was on the scene to assist 23 residents that have been displaced by they incident.

A building official stated that 11 units in the building were unsafe, due to fire, smoke and water damages. The Fire Marshal’s office stated that the preliminary damages will cost about $275,000 said a Prince William fire and rescue release.

The Prince William fire and rescue responders stated that the fire originated in the kitchen, and was caused by food that was left unattended while cooking. It has been deemed as accidental.

More from a Prince William fire and rescue release:

Install smoke detectors on every level within the home including the basement.

Test smoke detectors monthly and replace batteries as needed.

Change batteries when you change clocks (spring and fall).

Replace smoke detectors every 10 years.

Maureen Caddigan likes Jerry Foreman

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Type “Maureen Caddigan” into search.

Go ahead. I’ll wait.

OK, done?

Look down the page and you’re sure to see our headline: “Maureen Caddigan to Dumfries Mayor: I don’t trust you.” I wrote that story back in 2013.

In the story, Caddigan reacted to words Foreman spoke during a televised Dumfries Town Council meeting. He claimed she didn’t thoroughly represent the views of town residents on the Prince William County Board of Supervisors, on which she sits.

For years, the two bickered back and forth over town issues. Other members of the Town Council, including Foreman, also took Caddigan to task over issues like improving traffic flow on Route 1, the town’s main thoroughfare.

But no more, as the two appear to be getting along these days. And we think it’s only fair to write about this newfound truce to appease the Google search gods.

We normally don’t write about political endorsements. There are so many of them, with so many candidates vying for so many different local offices. As for us news writers, there are so few of us.

Caddigan is running to keep her seat on the Board of Supervisors, and Foreman is running for a seat in the Virginia Senate in Richmond.

In fact, the bickering is so five minutes ago, Caddigan fully endorsed Foreman.

Keep Reading…

Victim pushed downstairs outside Woodbridge home

On the evening of April 25, Prince William police responded to a call on Greenmount Drive in Woodbridge to investigate an assault.

According to Prince William police, an investigation revealed that the suspect, 32-year old Kerry Lynn Johnson, went to the home of the victim, a 34-year woman, to confront her.

Prince William police stated that the incident followed an ongoing dispute.

During the incident, Johnson pushed the victim down a flight of stairs and began assaulting her, said a Prince William police release.

Johnson left the area prior to officers arriving on the scene.

Minor injuries were reported.

Prince William police said that Johnson turned herself in without incident. She is currently being charged with one county of malicious wounding and is being held without bond.

Prince William schools save $11M, earn honors from EPA

During a ceremony last week at the Edward L. Kelly Leadership Center, Prince William County Public Schools was honored for their energy savings program.

Brian Gorham, Energy Management Administrative Coordinator for Prince William schools stated that since the program began in all county schools, he’s seen a huge savings – $11 million to be exact.

“In 2011, we actually spent over $23 million dollars on utility expenses as a school division…since instituting the energy management program…I’m proud to report that through the efforts of [school employees] we’ve been able to reduce our utility expenses down to $19.5 million dollars on an annual basis,” said Gorham.

Additionally, Gorham also stated that the schools have reduced their CO2 emissions footprint by 46,000 tons.

For Superintendent Steven Walts, the savings the county has seen since implementing the plan, which includes upgrading HVAC systems, weather stripping, and converting some fixtures to solar or battery power, has been a huge help during tough economic times for the school district.

“[I’ve been] trying to navigate through one very difficult budget year after another, and one of the things that has been instrumental in getting through the last couple of budgets…we’ve got another $2 million in energy savings…these savings have made a humongous monetary impact without major disruption to people’s comfort and convenience,” Walts said.

Jean Lupinacci, director of an Energy Star program for the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) was in attendance at the ceremony to award district schools for their conservation efforts.

The following schools were honored:

Alvey, Antietam, Bennett, Buckland Mills, Cedar Point, Coles, Dale City, Enterprise, Featherstone, Fitzgerald, Gar-Field, Graham Park, Henderson, Kerrydale, Kilby, Leesylvania, Lynn, Marumsco Hills, McAuliffe, Montclair, New Dominion, Old Bridge, Pattie and Washington-Reid, Pennington, Rockledge, Rosa Parks, Springwoods, Swans Creek, Westridge, Woodbridge HS, Woodbridge MS.

For City of Manassas business owners, breakfast is on us

Each year, Virginia pauses to recognize the many contributions entrepreneurs make to the quality of life for residents.
Manassas has  unique shops, and one-of-a-kind restaurants offering a spectrum of cuisines,
Manassas Business Appreciation Breakfast on Wednesday, May 6.

City of Manassas, Prince William Chamber of Commerce team to recognize city businesses 

To thank the businesses owners and operators who choose to be located in the city, the City of Manassas and the Prince William Chamber are hosting a free Manassas Business Appreciation Breakfast on Wednesday, May 6, from 8 – 10 a.m. at the Center for the Arts, located at 9419 Battle Street.

“Seats are going fast,” says Economic Development Director Patrick Small. “We want to honor as many of our businesses as possible at this exclusive event.” Local businesses are encouraged to spend the morning networking and hearing from the Mayor, Council and State Economic Development Leaders. To register for the event, contact Anita Duecaster at the Chamber at 571-765-1876. Space is limited.

Each year in May the Commonwealth of Virginia pauses to recognize the many contributions that private enterprise and entrepreneurs make to the quality of life for residents. At a recent City Council meeting, Mayor Harry J. Parrish II proclaimed May as Business Appreciation Month in the City of Manassas.

The City of Manassas has more than 1,400 business establishments within its boundaries and that number is growing every day. More than 14,000 people commute into the city to work each day with about 7,000 commuting out of the City. City of Manassas businesses range from new start-ups to Fortune 500 corporations.

There are unique shops, one-of-a-kind restaurants offering a spectrum of cuisines, two breweries and a brand new distillery. The Manassas Regional Airport is home to more than 25 businesses employing more than 1,050 people. The City’s Economic Development Department partners with the Chamber of Commerce to celebrate the business community and all that they bring to the community.

The breakfast is free to one registered person per business.

This promoted post is sponsored by City of Manassas, Virginia in recognition of the many business owners who help grow and sustain community.

Startup company expands at the Prince William Science Accelerator, receives $1.4M

The first company to open a space at the Prince William Science Accelerator – ISOThrive, LLC – has announced they will be moving into a larger space on the site.

The Prince William Science Accelerator is a facility located in Innovation Park – a collaborative effort between the Prince William County Economic Development department and George Mason University, to bring jobs and industry to Prince William.

ISOThrive is currently working on a probiotic nutritional supplement, and plans to enter the commercial market this year. They have received $1.4 million in private investments.

“The Prince William Science Accelerator is focused on growing a pipeline of world-class researchers, businesses and investors into the community. Being home to the only university-anchored science and technology park in the Greater Washington, DC metropolitan area, Prince William County provides new life sciences entrepreneurs and startups an ideal environment that promotes synergy and collaboration,” Prince William County Board of Supervisor’s Chairman At-Large Corey Stewart said in a release.

According to Jack Oswald, the CEO of ISOThrive, the Prince William Science Accelerator has allowed the company to grow quickly.

“ISOThrive’s participation in the Prince William Science Accelerator has enabled us to quickly advance our research and fast-track our time to market. The support of Prince William County and the close proximity to the world class resources of the MicroBiome Analysis Center at George Mason University have been instrumental to our efforts,” said Oswald in a release.

Additionally, ISOThrive is conducting a research study, and are looking for participants to test their supplement. In order to participate, individuals must be between 18 and 45, have a BMI of 25 or higher, and be in good health. Participants will be compensated $235 for their time and involvement, said a release.

 

Cause determined in waterfront house fire

A fire engulfed a house at 54 Shady Lane, Stafford, Virginia on April 16.  [KJ Mushung/Potomac Local News]

A fire engulfed a house at 54 Shady Lane, Stafford, Virginia on April 16.
[KJ Mushung/Potomac Local News]

The cause of a fire in the Hidden Springs neighborhood has been determined. A fire destroyed a home situated on the hills by a wide section of Aquia Creek on April 16. 

Stafford County fire and rescue crews got the call that morning for a fire at 54 Shady Lane in Stafford. That area doesn’t have hydrant service, so three tanker trucks were also called in.

The cause was determined to be food left on the stove, said Stafford County Fire & Rescue Assistant Chief Mark Doyle. 

The house, owned by Gary Mack Groomes, was a total loss. That address is also the business address for McLean Septic. 

The small house was reportedly built in 1918. 

The original story can be found here.

The house at 54 Shady Lane, Stafford, Virginia, sits on Aquia Creek.  [KJ Mushung/Potomac Local News]

The house at 54 Shady Lane, Stafford, Virginia, sits on Aquia Creek.
[KJ Mushung/Potomac Local News]

Closing Governor’s School would be a mistake, say parents, teachers

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It wasn’t on the agenda, but the issue of whether or not to close a location of the Commonwealth Governor’s School in Stafford was the central topic during the citizen comments period of the county school board meeting April 14.

Stafford County Public Schools hired a firm to conduct an efficiency study of district operations in November 2014. That report, which the Stafford County School Board recently received, recommends the closing of one of the three sites for the Commonwealth Governor’s School within the county. There are a total of six Commonwealth Governor’s School sites in the region, but the study focused only on Stafford’s sites, which are at Colonial Forge High School, North Stafford High School and Stafford High School.

The speakers at the school board meeting contend that the report is flawed and contains multiple inaccuracies. 

The efficiency study was done by Evergreen Solutions LLC, of Tallahassee, Florida. Stafford County budgeted approximately $100,000 to conduct the study. 

“Stafford County Public Schools understands that, in order to succeed in this mission, in the face of continuing economic constraints impacting operations and management, the school division will have to be even more effective and efficient than ever before,” stated the report on why the study was conducted.

The report also stated that approximately 27,000 students are currently enrolled in the county’s public schools, which consists of 30 schools and has approximately 3,750 members on staff. It also listed operating expenditures of over $272.9 million.

The report claims that eliminating one CGS site will save more than $680,000 a year. Keep Reading…

Republican primary candidates release their plans for Virginia’s 2nd district

Screen Shot 2015-04-28 at 11.24.11 AMOn June 9, two candidates for Virginia’s 2nd House district – former delegate Mark Dudenhefer and Tim Ciampaglio – will be facing off in a Republican primary for the delegate seat.

The incumbent, Delegate Michael Futrell, is currently running in a three-way Democratic primary for the 29th senate district, and will not be seeking re-election.

In order to establish their viewpoints prior to the primary, Ciampaglio and Dudenhefer have both announced their plans for the district if elected.

Lean government proposal

According to a release, Dudenhefer has a three-point plan to cut taxes in the district, and reduce the size of government.

“Lean government models have been used in other states to cut down backlogs, use taxpayer money more effectively, and improve governmental processes to ensure peak performance,” said Dudenhefer in a release.

Dudenhefer stated that he would direct the Inspector General to implement a ‘lean government philosophy’ in state government, train state government managers to learn and use the lean government model, and target government processes to simplify and streamline processes in government that will reduce waste.

Additionally, Dudenhefer referenced his track record during his time as a delegate, where he stated that he was able to cut taxes and reduce the size of government.

Peak operating efficiency plan

Ciampaglio stated in a release that he has a plan to increase the efficiency of state government with his own three-point plan.

“The plan begins by asking if an expenditure is necessary to the agency mission and then derives a method to drive all expenditures towards only core operating service requirements,” said Ciampaglio in a release.

In his operating efficiency plan, Ciampaglio stated he would teach “agencies and the Inspector General to create strategic metrics that measure the efficiency and effectiveness of agency spending.”

By doing so, Ciampaglio said that the agencies would be able to stretch their budgets, be more transparent in their decision making, make recommendations on improving spending, and provide Virginia tax payers with a way of tracking the state’s efficiency and effectiveness.

According to Ciampaglio, following an editorial he authored, comments were made asking for a release of his peak efficiency-operating plan, in response to the editorial. Ciampaglio stated he is seeking clarification as to whether these comments were made by district voters or by other sources.

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