OPTiMO, which was founded in 2008, works within federal, defense and commercial markets, and decided to make the move to serve customers in the Washington, D.C. and Virginia area.
According to OPTiMO’s CEO Michael Miguelez, the company chose to open their new location on Battlefield Parkway in Manassas because of its accessibility and commuting time.
“We’re delighted to be in Prince William County. We established our first Virginia location in Vienna in 2012 to better serve our federal clients, but we rapidly outgrew that facility. We wanted a location with easy access to Washington, DC that is supported by a solid internet infrastructure, with room to support our growth, while supporting a manageable commute for our engineering teams – Prince William County has it all,” said Miguelez.
20 engineers are currently working at the new facility.
Additionally Miguelez stated that the young professionals coming from nearby universities influenced their location decision.
“Prince William County was a clear winner in our site evaluation. We gain direct access to a talent pipeline of young professionals with both Northern Virginia Community College and the George Mason University Science & Technology Campus nearby,” said OPTiMO’s vice president of engineering Jarrod Norton.
According to the Prince William County Economic Development department, the county’s IT sector is growing rapidly.
HomeTowne Auto Repair & Tire and other area businesses were given an award for their involvement and continued support of the Boy Scouts.
The award was part of the Boy Scout’s 2015 Community Friends for Scouting campaign, which raises money for Boy Scout programs throughout the year.
During the ceremony, HomeTowne Auto Repair & Tire was recognized for their continued involvement and for their silver sponsorship.
“At HomeTowne we’re proud that we can support local organizations like the Boy Scouts that help children and the community we live and work in,” said ST Billingsley, owner of HomeTowne Auto Repair & Tire.
Among the silver sponsors for the program were the Management and Training Consultants, Inc. and the Rotary Club of Lake Ridge, Virginia.
*This promoted post was sponsored by HomeTowne Auto Repair & Tire.
The Sterling Women of Prince William want to help you network and grow your business.
The group, which was founded in 2008 in Reston by Kristina Bouweiri – president of Reston Limousine – started as a way for business women to meet and has grown to include chapters all over Northern Virginia.
“When you’re a business owner, you’re running around and you’re running to all of these events and if you’re the kind of owner where your hands are in everything…your time limit is very small, on events you can attend. So for her, she wanted something where she could take a lunch once a month, have it close to her workplace, network with a bunch of women and then go back to work,” said Shateaa Holmes, head of the Sterling Women Prince William group and president of Excelsior Pay Group.
According to Holmes, the Sterling Women’s group filled a void in the community for business women.
“Kristina’s business is a huge business – it’s over $20 million in revenue, and she has more than 300 employees. And for a woman owned business to have that kind of success is rare. So she wanted to market to other women because you don’t really have that type of networking event. We have the fun and fluff [in the community], but we don’t have the get down to business – where you’re coming in and networking, and your purpose is to make connections and grow your business,” Holmes said.
The group got so popular, they began to expand and add locations.
“It’s turned into this huge networking event and late last year, [Bouweiri] started allowing people to open up different locations,” said Holmes.
Holmes started the Prince William chapter in November, which meets the third Wednesday of every month in Woodbridge. Women are able to see vendors, network with one another and hear from a speaker.
Holmes decided to open her own chapter of Sterling Women, following her own positive experience with the group.
“I went to my first Sterling Women event in February 2013. I started my business in July 2012, at the same time I was working a full time job…and from July to February, I had no success in my business. I was about to close my business. Someone told me about Sterling Women, and told me I needed to go…and after all of the connections I had made…there was no way I could close my business. And I want to pass that on to other people…You’ve got a room full of women, and you’re starting out, or you’re on the spectrum where you’ve got a multi-million dollar business, and you can walk up to any of these women, and connect with them…and learn from them. I wanted to bring that to Prince William County, because I didn’t see anything like that in the county,” said Holmes.
By March 2014, Holmes was able to quit her full time job to focus on her business and currently has 7 employees.
While the group is targeted towards women, Holmes stated that men are welcome to join.
According to the Virginia Lottery, an individual who purchased a winning lottery ticket in Manassas has not come forward to claim their winnings – and the ticket is about to expire.
The ticket was purchased on January 12 for a Cash 5 night drawing from a 7-Eleven location on Cockrell Road in Manassas, said Virginia Lottery.
The ticket was a winner and is valued at $100,000. Virginia Lottery stated that the winning numbers were 3-7-10-20-25 and that the ticket matched all five numbers.
But the owner of that ticket has not come forward to claim their prize.
More on lottery ticket expiration and unclaimed prizes from the Virginia Lottery:
By law, winning tickets in Virginia expire 180 days after the drawing. In this case, since the 180-day period ends on a Saturday, the winner has until close of business the next business day, which is 5:00 p.m. on Monday, July 13. If it’s not claimed by then, this $100,000 ticket will become worthless.
All Virginia Lottery unclaimed prize money goes to the state Literary Fund. The Literary Fund is used solely for educational purposes, such as upgrading technology in schools and teacher retirement funding. Since its inception in 1988, the Lottery has transferred more than $244 million in unclaimed prizes to Virginia’s Literary Fund.
Cash 5 drawings are held daily at 1:59 p.m. and 11:00 p.m. The chances of winning the $100,000 top prize are 1 in 278,256.
The owner must reach out to the Virginia Lottery in order to claim their prize.
In the afternoon on June 22, Haymarket police were called to a home on Gap Way for a call for unlawful entry of a residence.
According to Haymarket police, the homeowner stated that he saw a female open the rear door of his home and partially enter. When the homeowner confronted the woman, she asked to use the telephone.
Haymarket police stated that the female had no connections to the home.
After an investigation, Haymarket police identified the female as 22-year old Chelsey Davis.
Davis was located at her residence on Washington Street and has been charged with unlawful entry.
County supervisors are talking about ways to handle the Potomac and Rapphannock Transportation Commission’s (PRTC) $9 million dollar annual shortfall.
PRTC provides bus and rail service for residents in Prince William, Manassas and Stafford, including commuter, cross-county and local bus service.
According to PRTC’s Interim Executive Director Eric Marx, the organization is facing this large shortfall and may have to make some drastic cuts to service – including eliminating all local service or severely limiting commuter service – unless additional funding can be found.
Currently PRTC’s revenue sources include some federal and state funds, and a 2.1% motor fuels tax. Previously, the board of county supervisors chipped in money from the general fund, but stopped doing so after the recession hit the county in 2008.
An independent audit, and more talks
Marx has met with the supervisors to discuss the shortfall, and the board’s first step has been to call for an independent audit of PRTC and their budget, to see if efficiencies and cost savings can be found.
“There is an audit that Prince William County is planning, to have their independent auditing firm perform on PRTC, regarding our performance…it will be a way that the county can sort of independently determine how well we are doing. We can say everything we want about how efficient we are, and how productive we are…but having and independent process [provides] verification,” said Marx.
The audit will take place this fall, according to Marx.
While Marx stated that the three scenarios that PRTC has offered to address the shortfall are very real, they were meant to be broad and will receive much tweaking from the board.
“I’ve spoken with most of the [supervisors]…and all of them have listened attentively and asked some questions. But [we’re] really not at a point that people are making declarations one way or the other. There are three very broad scenarios, developed to illustrate what the extremes would be in terms of how many cuts would need to be made in order to achieve [certain] levels of savings. I suspect that none of those will be implemented exactly as they are…I suspect there will be a fair amount of give or take, with the policy guidance from the elected officials and the board of county supervisors and the county finance staff,” said Marx.
Supervisors share their thoughts
Potomac Local reached out to the county board of supervisors for their thoughts on how to handle the PRTC shortfall.
For Supervisor Mike May, addressing the board’s previous general fund contribution is on the table.
“It’s a significant amount of money and I don’t think the board is going to be able to be in a position to completely backfill a $9 million shortfall. There is a history of using general fund monies to supplement PRTC, and that probably makes some amount of sense – depending on of course, the amount. Historically, it’s been $1 to $1.5 million dollars, and so there’s a significant difference between that and the $9 million shortfall,” said May.
Additionally, May stated that none of the scenarios to cut service that PRTC has put forward would seriously be considered.
“All three scenarios are essentially non-starters. But those all assume a $9 million shortfall, and PRTC resolving it with some level of reductions. I don’t think any of the three will be met with a whole lot of support from the board,” said May.
Supervisor Maureen Caddigan stated that many of her constituents rely on PRTC and that not finding funding sources for PRTC’s shortfall would have a major impact on transit in the area.
“We need transportation, obviously. If you look at Route 1, and [Interstate] 95 and certainly [Route] 66 – where the jobs are…and the traffic is horrendous, so we need [public] transportation to get people around. The OmniRide is doing wonderful, people are really happy…the concern with some of the money now that is needed is for OmniLink. And OmniLink does take care of our neediest people – the people that don’t have cars…it’s expensive to run the buses, so we are taking a look at it…Route 1 – that is my greatest concern. People get off of 95 and they get onto Route 1, and the traffic is terrible, so I would not cut out any kind of transportation to get people around,” said Caddigan.
According to Supervisor John Jenkins, the General Assembly should play a role in solving the shortfall by putting a floor on the motor fuels tax – one of PRTC’s major funding sources.
“We have a corporate responsibility, with other jurisdictions, and so it’s not one of these things where you can just say, ‘You know, we’re not going to fund it.’ There are two or three options we’re going to look at in the future. We have, over the years, in Prince William County, funded from the general fund, a little bit of the operation of the transportation systems, but I don’t think we can continue to do that in the current scenario. The General Assembly could put a floor on the amount of [motor fuels] tax that’s being cut. One of the things I would like to see done would be for the state General Assembly to come in there and come and give us some real, meaningful revenues to help operate this transit system,” Jenkins said.
May also mentioned seeking outside funding sources, including the Northern Virginia Transportation Authority (NVTA), but that ultimately there would have to be some cuts at PRTC.
“I’m open to working with my colleagues to try and identify funding to help with some of that. I also think we should probably take a look at the possibility of using NVTA funds for a portion of that as well, but there’s probably going to have to be some reductions made on the PRTC side as well,” May commented.
Marx stated that public hearings could be held in the future to hear from county residents, as to how to address the $9 million shortfall.
On June 25, the U.S. Marshals’ Fugitive Task Force arrested 23-year old Triangle man Terrance Henderson for a shooting incident on Old Triangle Road on June 23.
Prince William police responded to a call at 2:27 a.m. that morning to investigate the shooting.
Their investigation revealed that the victim – a 21-year old Triangle man – was inside the residence when Henderson, who knew the victim, showed him a rifle which discharged, striking the victim in the leg, stated Prince William police.
After the incident, Henderson carried the victim outside and fled the area, said Prince William police.
When officers arrived on the scene, they located the victim outside near the home. The victim was transported to a nearby hospital with non-life threatening injuries, according to Prince William police.
Henderson was located in Fredericksburg, and was arrested without incident.
Prince William police stated that Henderson is being charged with unlawful wounding, shooting within an occupied dwelling and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. He is being held without bond.
The site first began as a side project of Fairfax resident Chris LeCompte. With numerous news sites dotted throughout the area, LeCompte found it challenging to quickly access geographically organized news content. NoVA Scanner solves this problem by placing Northern Virginia news on a single page. LeCompte also curates the content, filtering out as many non-news items as possible.
“My goal was to provide a hub for Northern Virginia news,” LeCompte said. “More importantly, I wanted to create a site that’s easy to access for people who don’t have the time to check dozens of local sources independently.”
NoVA Scanner is currently divided into seven categories: Arlington, Fairfax, Prince William, Reston & Herndon, Tysons Corner & McLean, Loudoun, and Alexandria.
Access NoVA Scanner by visiting novascanner.com on your phone, tablet or computer.
According to Prince William police, Bechtold was located in New York and is safe.
Prince William police are looking for 23-year old Woodbridge man Albert Bradley Bechtold.
According to Prince William police, an investigation showed that Bechtold left his home on Bayside Avenue around 12:45 a.m. on June 29.
Bechtold was believed to have left his home voluntarily, and may need assistance. Prince William police have classified him as endangered.
He may be driving a black 2009 Toyota Matrix hatchback with Virginia license plate tag VGF-3326, according to Prince William police. Additionally, he may have ties to the New York area.
Bechtold is described as a white male, 6’0” and 180 pounds with brown hair, blue eyes and tattoos on his neck, left hand, and right wrist, said Prince William police.
On July 1, the Manassas Museum will be offering free admission.
The decision to provide free admission to the museum came from the Manassas Historic Resources Board and the Manassas City Council, in order to give residents the opportunity to visit the museum.
The museum first opened in 1973, after residents created an exhibit to celebrate the city’s Centennial. Due to the popularity of that exhibit, the museum was created – located originally on Main Street – in 1991.
The Manassas Museum is currently on Prince William Street.
“The City of Manassas has a historic heart. We want to share this history with our residents and visitors at no cost,” stated City Manager W. Patrick Pate in a release.
According to a city release, some of the city’s programs including Spirits of Manassas and the Liberia Holiday tours will still have an admission charge, and the museum will still be accepting donations.
Any programs run by the museum are free for residents with a Manassas Museum Associates members, said a release.
The museum is open every day from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. through Labor Day.