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Your Virginia state inspection sticker is moving to the left

From  a press release: 

Effective Jan. 1, 2018, Virginia state inspection stickers will no longer be affixed to the bottom center of a vehicle’s windshield. Due to new innovations in the automotive industry, the state inspection stickers will be placed in the bottom left corner of the windshield, when viewed from inside the vehicle. This change in location will also apply to the placement of any other authorized stickers. There have been no changes made to the size or appearance of the existing vehicle inspection sticker.

The relocation stems from the fact that automobile manufacturers now offer crash avoidance technology in many of their vehicles.  In such vehicles, the new technology utilizes the center of the windshield. Therefore the placement of items in that area, including stickers, could prevent crash avoidance systems from operating properly.

“The core mission of the Virginia Safety Inspection Program is to promote highway safety and the crash avoidance technology is another tool provided by manufacturers to ensure vehicles operated on the roadways are safe at all times,” said Capt. R.C. Maxey Jr., Virginia State Police Safety Division Commander. “Therefore, we immediately began evaluating the situation and set forth to make the necessary changes to the Motor Vehicle Safety Inspection Manual, which governs the placement of the safety inspection sticker on all vehicles.”

Existing Virginia vehicle inspection stickers are to remain in their current position – in the bottom center of the windshield. Once a vehicle is inspected and issued a 2019 sticker, the new inspection sticker must be placed in the lower left corner, which is consistent with other states across the nation.

The Virginia State Police Safety Division began Dec. 2, 2017, notifying all Virginia certified inspections stations of the placement change that is to take effect Jan. 1, 2018.

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VDOT treating roads in Northern Virginia ahead of potential winter weather

From a press release: 

Crews are using opportunities between rush hours today and Friday, while temperatures are favorable, to treat roads with anti-icing materials in northern Virginia in anticipation of potential winter weather during the Friday afternoon rush hour and on Saturday. Drivers are encouraged to monitor the National Weather Service’s forecast by visiting weather.gov.

Throughout Fairfax, Loudoun, Prince William and Arlington* counties (*Arlington maintains own secondary roads) crews treat about 2,150 lane miles with brine or liquid magnesium chloride in advance of potential winter weather. This includes interstate, primary, and high-volume secondary roads, particularly ramps, bridges, and other critical areas prone to freezing. Once completed, drivers may see white brine lines on roads that have been treated.

The Virginia Department of Transportation asks drivers to give tanker trucks and trailing safety vehicles room to work. Anti-icing vehicles are heavy, not as agile as passenger vehicles, and require a larger turning radius. Also, drivers who follow too closely may experience reduced visibility due to the liquefied salt in the brine mix.

Ahead of any wintry precipitation, VDOT reminds drivers to fill their gas tanks, slow down, be aware of potential slick spots such as shaded areas and bridges, and to use the following resources:

This is also the perfect time to place or update an emergency kit in your car. Recommended items can be found at: www.ready.gov/car



Working out and keeping fit during the holidays and beyond

During the holidays well, okay most of the time, it sure feels like we are living our lives in the fast lane! Everything all the time, one of the lines from the song by the Eagles, sums up the frantic and often frenetic activities occurring during the holidays. If you are like many people, the time you spend in the gym may suffer because you simply do not have the time or the energy to work out as you would like.

Manassas Park Community Center (MPCC) fitness instructor Kathleen Joubert suggests that you work out with a friend. “Find someone with similar fitness and workout goals to your own, and plan to meet at the gym,” advises Joubert, “Discuss the classes you wish to attend, and plan to be there.

She points out that you are not as likely to miss classes if you know you have someone waiting for you. If you are working out alone, you may find any excuse not to go to the gym, but if you know your friend is there, waiting, and will be annoyed that you did not show up, you are more apt to go.

“I always tell people that is exactly how it began with me,” Joubert explains,When I was trying to get into a workout routine I had a great friend and workout partner who I did not want to disappoint so I went to the gym–even if I really didn’t want tobecause I didn’t want to let my workout partner down.

Joubert adds in order to keep motivated, stick to the classes and work out programs that you and your workout partner both like. It can turn into a competition, but if it gets you to the gym, then you both win!

Another helpful tip is not to stop at home before you go to the gym. Joubert always changes into her gym clothes before leaving work, and drives directly to the gym. “It is harder in the winter because it gets dark so early, but we all know that if you stop at home, you will find your way to the warm, comfy couch, and you will not make it to the gym as you initially planned,” Joubert adds.

If you prefer to work out alone, Joubert cautions not to do something she sees every day, “I always cringe when I see people lifting more weight than they should. Her experience and training reinforce her philosophy that it is more important to use less weight and do more repetitions.

“I am that instructor who will go right over to people and correct them immediately. I do not wish to embarrass anyone, but I know the correct form and if you are trying to lift weights that are too heavy, your form will be less than perfect, and that is how injuries happen,” Joubert explains.

“In my classes, I help people shape muscle, not build muscle,” Joubert clarifies, “If you are in my body sculpting class, and you are having a difficult time finishing the set, you are probably lifting too much weight.Most people are surprised when she tells them that men should only be lifting between 10-20 pounds, and women should probably lift no more than 16 pounds, which is only 8 pounds on each side. “Using lighter weights and increasing the repetition to three sets of twelve is a good way to maximize your workout without inviting injury,” she said.

Joubert likes to talk about diets with her students and stresses the importance of keeping portions small. “A great diet tip I always share is to keep your calorie intake in moderation by eating only a spoonful of whatever you wish to eat! If you are at a buffet, eat everything—but only one spoonful of everything,” she laughs.

Another tip Joubert recommends is to give yourself realistic goals. If your goal is to just get to the gym regularly, once you meet that goal, then give yourself another goal that you can meet such as attending

2 to 3 classes a week. She warns doing too much too quickly can lead to injury. She would rather see you building up to a goal rather than wearing yourself out from doing too much too fast.

“We really are our own worst critics,” Joubert added emphasizing she has heard every excuse for not going to the gym including people who say they are too fat, too old, or too embarrassed. She assures you that once you begin your workout routine, and start meeting your attainable goals, you will want to go to the gym!

Are you motivated to take one of the classes taught by Kathleen Joubert at the Community Center? She teaches Kickboxing on Tuesdays from 7:30 pm-8:20 pm, Body Sculpting on Wednesdays from 6:00pm-6:50 pm, and Boot Camp class on Saturdays from 8:30 am-9:20 am.

See you in class!

The Manassas Park Community Center is located at 99 Adams Street in Manassas Park, Va. Managed by the City of Manassas Park Department of Parks and Recreation, the facility offers group exercise classes, basketball courts, a swimming pool, wellness areas, and recreational programs.

For more information, visit us at www.ManassasParkCommunityCenter.com or call at 703-335-8872.

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After a long list of starts and stops, the Haymarket power line case will head back to Richmond

In a letter full of legalese, Virginia’s State Corporation Commission says it will consider new evidence in the case to build an overhead powerline in Haymarket.

Overall, the commission will once again review the need for the project following continued questions about who, or which company or data center — reportedly Amazon — would benefit from the new transmission line. The new transmission line would end near a newly constructed data center near the intersection of Routes 55 and 15 in Haymarket.

On Wednesday, SCC spokesman Andy Farmer said the organization would within the next two weeks release a new timeline for the additional proceedings.

“We are looking forward to providing the Commission with the requested information about this important project and continuing to provide reliable energy to customers in the Haymarket region,” said Dominion Energy spokesman Chuck Penn.

The decision to remand the case back to the SCC in Richmond comes after a summer of starts and stops for the project.

In June, the SCC voted to support the construction of a new 10 mile, 234,000-volt transmission line over one of two proposed routes: The railroad route, or the Carver Road route.

In July, Dominion asked the SCC to pause the power line process for 60 days to work with Prince William County leaders to obtain the right of way for easements to construct the Carver Road route.

Dominion didn’t get them, and county leaders joined with protesters to call attention to the fact that the Carver Road area was home to some of the first freed slaves in the state, meaning the area had historical significance.

Dominion then went back to the SCC and asked to build another alternate route, the Interstate 66 Overhead Route.

Prince William County Board of Supervisors Chairman At-large Corey Stewart has long been an outspoken opponent of Dominion Energy’s business practices and told Potomac Local on Wednesday that leaders have long questioned the need for the new power line.

“The SCC is finally waking up to the fact that Dominion lies and they don’t care about people’s property rights, they don’t care about working with localities minimize disruption to homes and businesses and a lot of people across Virginia are waking up to the fact that Dominion is not a good corporate citizen,” said Stewart, who is running to replace Tim Kaine as Virginia’s U.S. Senator.

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Here comes a wider, six-lane Fairfax County Parkway

A portion of the congested Fairfax County Parkway, which was once planned as an outer beltway for Washington, D.C., will be widened to six lanes.

The Virginia Department of Transportation plans to widen about five miles of the parkway between Routes 123 and 29. Additionally, an interchange will be added at Popes Head Road, where today a signal light causes major backups during the morning and afternoon commutes.

A public information session hearing on the $191 million project is scheduled from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 7, 2017, at the Northern Virginia Department of Transportation Northern Virginia Headquarters at 4975 Alliance Drive in Fairfax.

There you can learn about the project that is expected to open in late 2023.

For Fairfax County Springfield District Supervisor Pat Herrity, the start of the project couldn’t come soon enough.

“Yesterday would have been perfect,” quipped Herrity.

The majority of the funding for the project has been secured through state and local sources, to include Smart Scale money and Northern Virginia Transportation Authority funds. Officials still seek about the $94 million or the second phase of construction and hope to get it from the same mix of funders.

When the project is complete, “you’ll be able to go all the way from Route 123 to Route 50 without a traffic stop,” added Herrity.

Fairfax County Parkway was originally envisioned as one of two outer beltways for Washington, D.C. that were supposed to have been opened by 2000, added Herrity.

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Once an abortion clinic, a new free clinic — operated by Catholic Charities — opened on Wednesday

From a press release: 

On Wednesday, December 6, the Mother of Mercy Free Clinic in Manassas will be officially open for business. With this clinic, Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Arlington (CCDA) will serve the estimated 4,500 people living in low-income households without insurance in Manassas and Manassas Park.

Details

When:           Wednesday, December 6

                        3:30-8 p.m.                                  

Where:         Mother of Mercy Free Medical Clinic

9380 Forestwood Lane, Suite B

Manassas           

The medical clinic, which has a waiting room, four exam rooms and other offices, will be open four hours a week with volunteer doctors, nurses and personnel. It will primarily serve adults since children of low-income families can often receive medical insurance (i.e. Medicaid). During the non-clinical hours, CCDA will use the facility to provide a broader array of assistance related to immigration issues, mental health counseling, and referrals to other services. 

The clinic will be supported by healthcare contributions from Novant Health UVA Health System Prince William Medical Center. The free medical clinic will also use a local lab for additional patient services. In addition, CCDA is receiving consultative services offered by the Bon Secours Richmond Health System, a Catholic healthcare institution, to set up an ethics committee for the clinic. Catholic Charities is also cooperating with Tepeyac Clinic of Divine Mercy Care to provide mutual support for clients.

How the clinic came to be 

A group of parishioners from All Saints Catholic Church in Manassas and Holy Trinity Catholic Church in Gainesville participated in a pro-life ministry in which they would reach out to mothers and couples who approached a Manassas abortion clinic. This group also reached out to the staff at the abortion clinic in the hopes of fostering productive and respectful dialogue.

After the owner of the clinic passed away, the owner’s wife, who assumed ownership and control of the clinic’s operation, agreed to shut the clinic down and sell to a group of investors called the BVM Foundation (for Blessed Virgin Mary). The BVM Foundation approached CCDA about how the former abortion clinic could be changed to serve a noble and redemptive purpose. CCDA agreed to open a free clinic to serve the uninsured in the Manassas area and has embarked on this mission to prolong life and to promote the dignity of the human person.

In a statement issued earlier this month, Most Reverend Michael F. Burbidge, Bishop of Arlington, said, “Each day, God calls us to help our brothers and sisters in need and to be instruments of His mercy and healing love. This clinic is in response to that call and will open new opportunities for Catholic Charities and dedicated volunteers to help those who otherwise may have been unable to receive such compassionate care.”

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Police say a Ford Escape struck and killed Robert Gerner

Police have identified the car they say struck and killed Robert James Gerner, 55, of Triangle on Nov. 29

From a press release: 

Fatal Crash Investigation *SUSPECT VEHICLE – Based on the investigation into the fatal hit & run crash which occurred in the 18800 block of Fuller Heights Rd in Triangle on November 29, investigators from the Crash Investigation Unit believe the striking vehicle involved in the collision was a light-color, Ford Escape between model years 2001 and 2004. The vehicle would have sustained damage to a headlight and a hood mounted bug deflector.

Anyone with information regarding this crash is asked to contact Investigator Cruz Reyes at 703-792-4443 or email their contact information to policedept@pwcgov.org. The investigation continues.

Further Suspect Vehicle Description:

A light color, Ford Escape, between 2001 & 2004 model, with damage to a headlight and a hood mounted bug deflector