QUANTICO, Va. — Military officials want local governments to require better sound protection in homes and other structures built around Quantico Marine Corps Base.
In a new Joint Land Use Study, or JLUS, released today by Quantico and Stafford County, base officials cite creating new sound attenuation standards as one of eight critical needs facing operations at the crossroads of the Marine Corps, as well as future development around the military installation.
The new guidelines would need to be put in place for new homes, churches, and other public buildings. The study specifically cites putting guidelines in place for a new Moncure Elementary School to be built in North Stafford near the base’s boundary line.
Noise from demolition ranges on the base the frequently produce loud booms that rattle windows, and that been known to shake whole houses, which often lead to complaints from area residents.
Quantico also wants more input and review authority when it comes to approving new development around the base. For that, the study recommends a Military Influence Area overlay district where base officials can review development plans for construction both on and off the base. The district would include Stafford County’s heavily-populated Garrisonville Road corridor, as well as sliver of land in Prince William County near where the county’s school division headquarters are located. An implementation of such a district could limit the density of neighborhoods, building height, as well as cell phone towers, so structures don’t interfere with military aircraft.
If the military impact plan would be placed in effect in the rural area along Va. 610 west of Joshua Road in Stafford County, buildings like hospitals, assisted living facilities, day cares, commercial or industrial areas, medium to high density residential develop, as well as sports centers or outdoor amphitheaters would not be permitted.
According to the study, soundproofing existing homes near the base could cost as much as $10,000 per home but the cost is only slightly higher when soundproofing new home construction. The JLUS also discusses the option of a mandatory written real estate disclosure where the seller of any property in the Military Influence Area would warn residents of the high noise potential from the base.
Transportation improvements at Quatnico’s Fuller Gate, which provides access to the base near the intersections of Russell Road and U.S. 1, and sits east of Interstate 95, are also identified as critical in the short term. The base wants to work with local governments to acquire additional rights of way to widen Russell Road and existing ramps that carry traffic from the 2-lane facility to the 4-lane U.S. 1 that bridges the gap between Prince William and Stafford counties, according to JLUS findings.
Russell Road is also the gateway to the 719,000, $323 million Russell-Knox Building sitting west of I-95. The building is now home to some 6,000 federal workers whose jobs were moved to Qauntico following a 2005 Base Realignment and Closure action.
The study was completed by Quantico and Stafford County, along with Fauquier and Prince William counties. New growth in these areas could bring increased noise complaints to the military, and could “compromise the overall mission viability” for the base.
Quantico injects $5.9 billion into the local economy and is linked to 46,490 jobs, according to the study.
STAFFORD, Va. — Stafford County’s new schools superintendent comes from Virginia’s Eastern Shore.
Dr. Bruce Benson will take charge of the county schools on April 1, 2014. He was appointed to the new position last night.
Here’s more in a press release:
“I am very excited about the opportunity to serve the SCPS community. I look forward to providing continued support for the good work already underway in the schools, as well as helping the school community chart a course for the next generation of excellence. I appreciate the clearly visible efforts to ensure students in the county have access to a comprehensive school experience, embracing and supporting academics, arts, career preparation, and athletics,” he said.
He has served as the superintendent in Accomack since 2011. During his tenure, he led the development and implementation of a new vision, mission, goals, and supporting strategic plan, charting a new course for the future of the division. Accomack County Public Schools serve more than 5,000 students in 11 schools.
Prior to joining Accomack County, Benson served as assistant superintendent in Albemarle County Public Schools from 2006 to 2011. He held the director of technology position in Albemarle from 1999 to 2003 and served as executive director for curriculum, instruction and technology from 2003 to 2006.
In 1983, he began his education career in Franklin City Public Schools in Franklin, Virginia, where he taught chemistry, biology, and computer science courses until 1990. In 1990, he was appointed as the Division’s technology coordinator.
Benson replaces Dr. Randy Bridges, of North Carolina, who spent nearly three years working at the county schools chief. Bridges said he resigned because he wanted to spend more time with family in North Carolina.
During his time in Accomack County, Benson kept a blog about educational issues.
Accomack County has five elementary schools, two middle schools, and four high schools. A larger school division, Stafford County has 17 elementary schools, eight middle schools, and five high schools.
NORTH STAFFORD, Va. — After two elections in 2009 and 2013, long-time Stafford resident Laura Sellers was sworn in on December 10, as one of the newest members of the Stafford County Board of Supervisors. Filling incumbent Ty Schieber’s seat in the Garrisonville district, Sellers has big plans for her time on the Board.
Graduating from North Stafford High School, Sellers earned her Sociology degree from North Carolina State University. In 2009, she had returned to Stafford County and chose to run against then Garrisonville District Supervisor Mark Dudenhefer.
Sellers recalled a conversation with her parents about how many Stafford races go uncontested, that sparked her interest in running for the Board seat.
“That’s crazy; why would we have any races that were uncontested? That’s really why I decided to run back in 2009. There should never be a race that is uncontested because it keeps an incumbent honest – so I learned the issues, really educated myself,” Sellers said.
While Sellers did not win the seat against Dudenhefer, she made a commitment to run again in 2013.
“When I lost in 2009, I said ‘I’m going to stay on top of the issues,’” she added.
It was the change to her game plan during the campaign that made the difference in helping her to win the seat during this year’s General Election on Nov. 5. She turned a historically red Republican magisterial district in Stafford County to Democrat blue.
“I was more strategic this time. I’m the former Chair of the Stafford Democratic Committee, so I had an understanding of where the Democrats sat. I volunteered on a lot more campaigns here locally in Stafford, and I had finished all of the coursework for my Master’s degree in Social Work, so I have a really good understanding of public policy,” Sellers said.
And while recent Virginia elections have shown trending for more Democratic support, with Obama’s Virginia wins in 2008 and 2012, and the recent gubernatorial race with the election of Terry McAuliffe, Sellers does not believe that this sweep of support for her party helped her during the campaign.
“It helped in knowing where Democrats sat, but Obama didn’t win Stafford. Locally, it’s just a very different race than at the national level.”
To Sellers, one key strategy she implemented during the campaign was working on her bipartisan interactions with voters, and looking at the common ground they shared, instead of their differences; something she worked on in her role at the Department of Defense, working with openly conservative colleagues.
“In social work, we say there’s a time called a ‘learning moment’ and there’s a moment when you just move on,” Sellers said.
Despite being new to the Board, Sellers plans to act as a strong advocated for the Garrisonville District, making it a priority for the district to have a strong voice.
“There are issues that need to be addressed in the district, like, our fire station – Station 14. We need a full fire station instead of a modular and a temporary building, which is planned for 2018; I would like to work with the Board and the County to find a way to move that up,” Sellers said.
Students, faculty, and staff have been given the all clear to re-enter Widewater Elementary School after a propane gas leak was found.
At 9:40 a.m., 20 minutes after fire and rescue crews were called to the scene, officials said they secured the gas leak and that it was safe for students to reenter the building.
NORTH STAFFORD, Va. — Widewater Elementary School in Stafford County was evacuated this morning after someone smelled what they thought was gas inside the building.
A smell of propane was noticed in a school utility room and that prompted the evacuation, according to initial reports.
Fire and rescue crews have been called to the scene and found a leaking propane pipe inside a utility room. The pipe was used to feed an external generator at the school, according to initial reports.
Fire and rescue crews will monitor the situation and are expected to provide an “all clear” that would permit students to reenter the building.
WOODBRIDGE, Va. — The U.S. Post Office will adjust their hours at several locations in Northern Virginia to better accommodate the Christmas rush.
More in a press release:
All lanes of I-95 south reopened.
Only one lane of Interstate 95 south is closed following a tractor trailer crash this afternoon.
STAFFORD COUNTY, Va. — A tractor trailer crash closed all three lanes of Interstate 95 at mile post 133 in Falmouth.
More in a press release:
All lanes of southbound Interstate 95 are currently closed near Exit 133 at Falmouth in Stafford County for a tractor-trailer incident.
Traffic is being diverted to the left shoulder of southbound I-95, which remains open.
All lanes are anticipated to re-open within an hour. However, motorists should expect significant delays this afternoon into early evening, as congestion will take time to clear once lanes are re-opened.
Delays have also formed on U.S. 17 east as where drivers are cuing up to get onto the highway.
The number of customers without power in our area following this week’s snow and ice is falling.
NOVEC outages as of 11 a.m.
Prince William County – 28
Stafford County – 7
Manassas Park – 1
Dominion outages as of 11 a.m.
Prince William County – 50
Stafford County – 3
Dominion Power still noted more than 2,500 outages in Fairfax County on Wednesday morning.
Many customers in Prince William and Stafford lost power after trees fell onto a transmission line that belongs to NOVEC. Here’s more on that in a press release:
Northern Virginia Electric Cooperative is working to restore power by Wednesday evening, December 11, to all customers who lost service during the December 9 and 10 ice and snow storms. Crews are removing trees and branches from power lines at approximately 40 outage locations in Fairfax, Fauquier, Prince William and Stafford counties.
More than 34,000 customers lost power at the height of the storm Monday morning when ice-coated trees and branches outside NOVEC’s right-of-way corridors fell on power lines. As of 10:30 a.m. on December 11, crews had 54 more customers to bring back online.
“We’ve had our Co-op and contract crews, as well as crews from Tennessee working day and night since early Monday morning when the first outages occurred,” says Larry Shaffer, vice president of System Operations. “Working at night with chain saws and electricity in bitterly cold weather, with ice and snow hitting your face, is a tough and dangerous job. We have a hardy group of men and women who do this job and do it very well. I thank them.”
And just like that, the winter storm that could have dumped two to four inches of snow on the area seemed to fizzle.
A winter storm warning in place for Prince William, Greater Manassas, and much of the Washington metro area was replaced by a winter weather advisory. The revised forecast called for one to three inches of snow.
WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY IN EFFECT UNTIL 2 PM EST THIS AFTERNOON…
.REST OF TODAY…SNOW LATE THIS MORNING…THEN SNOW LIKELY THIS
AFTERNOON. TOTAL SNOW ACCUMULATION OF 1 TO 3 INCHES. HIGHS IN THE
LOWER 30S. NORTHWEST WINDS AROUND 5 MPH. CHANCE OF SNOW NEAR
.TONIGHT…MOSTLY CLEAR. LOWS AROUND 17. WEST WINDS 5 TO 10 MPH.
.WEDNESDAY…SUNNY. HIGHS IN THE LOWER 30S. SOUTHWEST WINDS AROUND
.WEDNESDAY NIGHT…PARTLY CLOUDY. LOWS AROUND 19. SOUTHWEST WINDS
AROUND 5 MPH…BECOMING NORTHWEST AFTER MIDNIGHT.
In areas to the south, including Stafford County, we’ve seen rain mixing with sleet. Fat snowflakes were falling before sunrise but things quickly changed over. The Washington Post’s Capital Weather Gang stated last night that this could happen.
More from their story:
Is there any way this could be a bust? Yes, there is one scenario in which the heavier precipitation misses the metro area to the south, temperatures don’t cool down enough and we end up with some sleet and closer to an inch of snow. We think the chances of this scenario happening are on the low side, but not impossible.
A winter storm warning will be in effect for Prince William, Fairfax, Loudoun counties, as well as the cities of Manassas, Manassas Park, and Washington, D.C. from 2 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday. It replaces the winter weather advisory that was slated to go into effect during the same time frame.
A winter weather advisory remains unchanged for Stafford County and points south, as it will go into effect at 3 a.m. and last until 2 p.m. Tuesday.
All of this comes with another round of winter weather that could bring two to four inches of new snow to our area during the day Tuesday. It should start by the morning rush hour, we’re told.
More in a National Weather Service forecast bulletin:
DENSE FOG ADVISORY IN EFFECT UNTIL 3 AM EST TUESDAY…
…WINTER STORM WARNING IN EFFECT FROM 3 AM TO 2 PM EST TUESDAY…
.TONIGHT…AREAS OF DENSE FOG. SNOW WITH SLEET AND FREEZING RAIN
LIKELY AFTER MIDNIGHT. VISIBILITY ONE QUARTER MILE OR LESS AT TIMES.
SNOW AND SLEET ACCUMULATION AROUND AN INCH. LOWS IN THE LOWER 30S.
WEST WINDS 5 TO 10 MPH. CHANCE OF PRECIPITATION NEAR 100 PERCENT.
.TUESDAY…SNOW…MAINLY IN THE MORNING. TOTAL SNOW ACCUMULATION OF
3 TO 5 INCHES. HIGHS IN THE MID 30S. NORTH WINDS 5 TO 10 MPH…
BECOMING WEST IN THE AFTERNOON. CHANCE OF SNOW NEAR 100 PERCENT.
.TUESDAY NIGHT…MOSTLY CLEAR. COLD WITH LOWS AROUND 15. WEST WINDS
5 TO 10 MPH.
.WEDNESDAY…SUNNY. HIGHS IN THE LOWER 30S. SOUTHWEST WINDS AROUND
.WEDNESDAY NIGHT…MOSTLY CLEAR IN THE EVENING…THEN BECOMING
PARTLY CLOUDY. LOWS AROUND 18. SOUTHWEST WINDS AROUND 5 MPH…
BECOMING NORTHWEST AFTER MIDNIGHT.
Several area schools have already announced changes in their schedule for Tuesday. Keep checking back to this page as it will be updated with new delays, closings, and cancellations as they come in.
Things continue to change weather wise as the region is once again in for a blast from Old Man Winter.
A winter weather advisory will go into effect at 3 a.m. Tuesday and last until 2 o’clock in the afternoon. Snow, one to three inches of it, could fall in Stafford County – an area where there was no winter advisory issued earlier today.
Prince William County is set to pick up a bit more snow, anywhere from two to four inches of the white stuff.
Here’s more in from the National Weather Service:
WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY IN EFFECT FROM 3 AM TO 2 PM EST TUESDAY…
.REST OF THIS AFTERNOON…PARTLY SUNNY. HIGHS AROUND 40. WEST WINDS
AROUND 5 MPH.
.TONIGHT…MOSTLY CLOUDY. SNOW…SLEET AND FREEZING RAIN LIKELY
AFTER MIDNIGHT. LITTLE OR NO SNOW AND SLEET ACCUMULATION. ICE
ACCUMULATION AROUND A TRACE. LOWS IN THE LOWER 30S. NORTH WINDS
AROUND 5 MPH. CHANCE OF PRECIPITATION 70 PERCENT.
.TUESDAY…SNOW AND SLEET IN THE MORNING…THEN A CHANCE OF SNOW IN
THE AFTERNOON. SNOW AND SLEET ACCUMULATION OF 2 TO 4 INCHES. HIGHS
IN THE LOWER 30S. NORTHWEST WINDS 5 TO 10 MPH. CHANCE OF
PRECIPITATION NEAR 100 PERCENT.
.TUESDAY NIGHT…MOSTLY CLEAR. COLD WITH LOWS AROUND 14. WEST WINDS
5 TO 10 MPH.
With this next batch of winter weather headed our way, those charged with keeping roads clear are back at work.
Here’s more in a press release from VDOT:
Beginning at 4 a.m. Tuesday, more than 1,200 trucks and plows will be working to keep roads passable in northern Virginia. Trucks will be pre-positioned in subdivisions and will begin plowing once two inches of snow have fallen.
In northern Virginia, VDOT has one snow removal program for high-volume roads such as Interstates 66, 95, 495, Routes 1, 7, 15, 28,50, Fairfax County Parkway, etc. and another for subdivisions. Crews work on high-volume roads and subdivisions concurrently. Within each of these programs, roads with highest traffic volumes are cleared first.
Residents can see the status of plowing in northern Virginia neighborhoods at www.vdotplows.org. Once it snows more than two inches, Fairfax, Loudoun and Prince William residents can enter their address and a color-coded map shows whether plowing is underway, completed, or not yet started in their neighborhood.
And then there’s the electricity situation. Thousands in Prince William and Stafford lost power during last night’s ice storm. Click here to see the latest number of outages.
STAFFORD COUNTY, Va. — The Democratic Party in Stafford County will do a bit of reorganizing this weekend.
Here’s more in a press release:
The Stafford County Democratic Committee has set Sat., Dec. 14 at 10:00 a.m. for its two-year reorganization meeting. The caucus will be conducted in the Board Chambers at the George L. Gordon Administration Center, 1300 Courthouse Rd., Stafford VA 22554. All Democrats who are willing to sign a pledge to support Democratic candidates may vote for the membership of the Stafford Democratic Committee in the caucus. Participants must arrive prior to 10:00 a.m.
Any Democrat who wishes to be voted in as members for 2014-15 should submit their membership application by 5 p.m. Thurs., Dec. 12. The applications and details for submission are available at stafforddemocrats.org. After voting in the new members, the newly-formed SDC will vote on its officers.
For further information call (540) 300-1870.
The party is required by the Virginia State Board of Elections to hold the reorganization meeting every two years, said Stafford Democratic Committee Chairwoman Alane Callander
NOVEC customers in Prince William and Stafford counties have been without power following the overnight storm after a tree fell on large transmission line.
Here’s more in a press release:
Northern Virginia Electric Cooperative crews are working to restore power to thousands of customers in Northern Virginia after ice caused trees to fall on power lines on Monday, December 9.
A tree that fell on a Dominion Virginia Power transmission line just before 7 a.m. on December 9 disrupted service to eight NOVEC substations in Prince William and Stafford counties and interrupted service to more than 20,000 NOVEC customers. DVP crews worked to reroute power after isolating the tree-affected section of the line and restored service to NOVEC’s substations at 9:13 a.m.
“NOVEC thanks Dominion for quickly diagnosing the problem and switching to another source to restore the transmission service,” said Larry Shaffer, NOVEC vice president of System Operations.
NOVEC, contract, and out-of-state crews are working to restore power to other storm-affected customers in Fairfax, Fauquier, Loudoun, Prince William and Stafford counties. “We’ve got all crews out in the field,” Shaffer said. “We’re hoping to restore service to all customers by Tuesday morning, if not sooner.” Customers can obtain outage information on NOVEC’s website.
NOVEC warns customers not to go anywhere near a downed power line because it could be energized and deadly. Also, customers should never run power generators indoors because they could create deadly carbon monoxide. A large generator should only be connected to the power grid by a qualified electrician because an incorrectly connected generator could kill line technicians who are working on the system.
QUANTICO, Va. — Those wanting to know more about the future of development near Quantico and surrounding areas will have to wait a bit longer.
Inclement weather was forced officials to postpone an informational meeting for the Quantico Joint Land Use Study, or JLUS, originally scheduled tonight at the Hilldrup Moving and Storage Facility, until next week. The new meeting time is 7 p.m. Monday, Dec. 16, at Hilldrup Moving and Storage.
The study examined areas in Prince William, Stafford, and Fauquier counties and is expected to present ideas and suggestions on how best to center development in these counties with the Quantico Marine Corps Base in mind.
Two other JLUS presentations are scheduled, one in Fauquier County on Wednesday at the Old Cedar Run Rescue Squad Building at3558 Catlett Road in Catlett, and in Prince William inside the County Government Center’s Development Services Building
at 5 County Complex Court, Room #202 in Woodbridge.
PRINCE WILLIAM COUNTY, Va. — Social media lit up tonight with reports and lightning and thunder in portions of Prince William County. All of this while moderately heavy rains fell onto a surface where temperatures were at or below freezing.
A look at online radar from the National Weather Service about 10 p.m. showed a major line of rain moving into Virginia from the south, moving northeast. As it came into contact with colder air near Roanoke, the radar indicated the precipitation was turning to sleet and freezing rain.
The National Weather Service’s Washington D.C. office stated just before 8 p.m. they expect up to a quarter inch of ice to form with this storm overnight.
Power companies and their own meteorologists are also watching this late evening ice storm develop.
“in Northern Virginia, we do expect for the window of opportunity of threat is a little bit later and will go into the morning hours tomorrow,” Dominion Virginia Power spokeswoman Le Ha Anderson told Potomac Local News.
As of 10 p.m., Dominion was reporting no outages in areas serviced in Prince William and Stafford counties. Northern Virginia Electric Cooperative also reported no outages.
While no out-of-state power crews have been called in to assist Dominion crews already on standby, an agreement is in place to bring them into Virginia if need be.
A winter storm warning remains in effect for Prince William, Manassas, and Manassas Park until 10 a.m. A winter weather advisory is in effect in Stafford County until 7 a.m. Monday.
“We have been involed in conversations with other utility companies in the southeast, but we are not at this time requesting additional crews, nor have offered to release any of our crews to any other utilities,” added Anderson.
Rain and freezing rain is forecast to continue between now and 1 p.m. Monday, according to the weather service.
Here is a map of snow and ice totals from the weather service.
The water treatment facility at Abel Lake went back into operation at midnight, stated Stafford County Fire and Rescue Department Asst. Chief Mark Doyle.
County officials did not say if a leak was found at the facility.
STAFFORD COUNTY, Va. — Crews tonight were called to the Abel Lake Water Treatment Facility where the possible leak was reported by an employee of the facility. The treatment center has been locked down and any leak that might be inside is contained the building, stated Stafford Fire and Rescue Department spokesman Asst. Chief Mark Doyle.
Officials said there is no impact to the quality of water or water service in the area due to this incident.
The facility sits along Abel Lake which serves as one of two reservoirs for Stafford County. The 185-acre lake is narrow and is surrounded by homes.
Smith Lake in North Stafford is the second source of the county’s drinking water.
Two adults and two children were inside the house when a fire broke out at Garrisonville Road about 11:30 Monday night.
All made it out safely. The cause of the fire is still under investigation.
NORTH STAFFORD, Va. — A sea of emergency vehicles descended on a house on Garrisonville Road on Monday night.
A fire broke out at a 2-story home at 1006 Garrisonville Road, just past Shelton Shop Road, at 11:34 p.m. A woman and her two small children were inside the house when they smelled smoke.
“She said it kind of exploded, and there’s a lot of combustible stuff in the basement,” said Debra Logan
Logan said it was her her niece was inside the house with the children, and when they heard the electrical box on the side of the house started making noises, that’s when they called 911.
Logan lives across the street. Her father, many years ago, built the house that caught fire late Monday. The two children – a 2-year-old girl and 3-year-old boy, and their mother made it out of the house unharmed.
The family gathered in the front yard for hugs as fire crews searched the house to ensure the fire was completely doused.
It took firefighters about 25 minutes to bring the blaze under control. While the official cause of the fire has not been released, Logan suspects the electrical box on the side of the house could have sparked the fire.
A crew with Dominion Virginia Power later arrived on the scene. Fire crews called for assistance from the power company after dousing the blaze.
STAFFORD COUNTY, Va. — Stafford officials want to make some extra cash by leasing land for cell phone towers at schools, parks, and other locations in the county.
A lease agreement could net the county as much as $2.8 million over a 15-year period, and all it would require is entering into a contract to lease out the space where cell phone towers will be built to a private company.
That company is Reston-based Milestone Communications — a firm that partners with school divisions and local governments for land to build the cell phone towers. Milestone then markets those towers to cell phone carriers who are looking to improve wireless access to customers in underserved areas in Stafford County.
“Almost from every district, we had people coming in and complaining that did they did not have high speed internet, and there just never going to be a cable for fiber optic line to places like Marlborough point [a rural area along the Potomac River]… by courting Milestone, this is one of the few ways we get basic high speed internet out to the county,” said George Washington District Supervisor Bob Thomas.
A total of 82 sites, 27 of which are schools or School Board-owned properties, are being considered to be used as cell sites. Some of the sites include:
Anthony Burns Elementary
Park Ridge Elementary
Hampton Oaks Elementary
Winding Creek Elementary
Ferry Farm Elementary
Rocky Run Elementary
H.H. Poole Middle
Heim Middle School
Stafford Senior High
Brooke Point High
North Stafford High
Colonial Forge High
Public Safety Center
Stafford Civil War Park
Stafford Animal Shelter
England Run Library
Aquia Landing Park
Historic Port of Falmouth
The School Board continues to review the entire list of sites and is expected to come to a final decision by Dec. 10 on which school properties will be approved for new towers, said Stafford Deputy County Administrator Keith Dayton.
The towers, also known as monopoles, will be 150-feet tall and would be made to blend into the landscape. Some would look like natural trees, while others on school sites could be attached to, or sit next to the tops of tall stadium light posts.
Mirroring the terms of an agreement already in place between Milestone and the City of Manassas, Milestone will build and maintain the cell phone towers and then split the revenue giving the county a 40% share. That plan remains negotiable, according to county documents.
Officials said locations in Stafford’s Rockhill District were not considered for inclusion on the list after a request made by Supervisor Cord Sterling.
STAFFORD, Va. — If you call for an ambulance in Stafford County, the cost to ride may be going up.
Since 2006 the county’s fire and rescue department has charged ambulance fees. Right now, those fees are set between $500 and $800 for the initial call, and charge of up to $12 per mile. The department now proposes a 1% increase on those fees, raising the rate for a basic life support transport ride at $505, advanced life support $656, and an advanced life support category two set at $808. A mileage charge of $12.12 would also be imposed if the fees go up.
The Center for Medicare and Medicaid services recently raised the Ambulance Inflation Factor on which the rates are based, and improved the 1% increase for 2014, according to county documents.
A public hearing on the matter is scheduled for Tuesday, Dec. 17 at the Stafford Board of Supervisors Chambers at the county’s government center.
If the new rate is passed, Stafford County could get as much as $100,000 new revenue from the higher fees. The new fees would be put in place 30 days after a rate increase is approved, county documents state.
STAFFORD COUNTY, Va. — Stafford County residents will pay for the construction cost of a new indoor swimming facility at a new Embrey Mill Park.
The soon-to-be-built park will sit next to a new housing development of the same name bringing nearly 2,000 new homes to the region.
The Embrey Mill Indoor Recreation Center will include three indoor pools at the cost of $11 million. Adjacent ball fields and a park that will sit next to indoor swim facility will drive up the total cost for the park another $10.5 million, according to county officials.
Aquia District Supervisor Paul Milde the park and the indoor swimming center will help improve the quality of life for Stafford residents.
“It’s not an $11 million pool,” said Milde. “It’s an entire rec center. We are told, and I am convinced, it will make us competitive regionally… I believe it will generate some revenue to mitigate the costs… it made sense economically.”
The 76,000-square foot facility will include three swimming pools: a 50 meter x 25 yard foot wide competition pool with space for 300 competitors and include a movable bulkhead with seating for 800 spectators. Next to it will be a smaller warm up pool with a depth of 3.5 and 4.5 feet, and an 810 square-foot wellness pool with warmer water and therapeutic features, county documents state. The recreation center will also have a basketball court, aerobics studio, spinning room, classrooms, locker rooms, and offices.
Board Chairman Susan Stimpson voted against the center and said more could have been done to lower the cost of the facility by getting private business involved.
“One of the things we were hoping for was that private sector was going to donate to this pool, but instead the plan just got hi-jacked and it become a government project,” said Stimpson.
Talks that were underway with a local YMCA organization that would support the pool have now halted, said Stimpson.
As the swimming facility nears completion, Stafford County will search for someone to operate and maintain the pools.
“The County will send out a request for proposal (RFP) to the public asking for proposals to operate and maintain the indoor recreation facility. Those proposals will be evaluated for selection,” stated county spokeswoman Shannon Howell in an email.
The park and the indoor recreation center will be located on Courthouse Road across from Colonial Forge High School and will include lighted rectangular fields for youth soccer, lacrosse, and field hockey.
STAFFORD COUNTY, Va. — There is a renewed interest in the cold case of a business man murdered inside a Stafford County home.
There is a $50,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of the person responsible for shooting and killing 49-year-old Samih Mustafa Sowan inside a home at 35 Fife Street in the Austin Ridge section of Stafford County. The donor has chosen to remain anonymous.
More in a police press release:
Stafford deputies responded to a report of a shooting at 35 Fife Street at 7:53 PM on Tuesday March 1, 2011. Responding deputies were met at the location by an occupant of the house who told deputies that the man who had been renting an apartment in his basement had been shot and was unresponsive.
The resident of the house stated that he heard what he thought were gunshots coming from the basement. When he went down to the basement he found the victim on the floor dead from an apparent gunshot wound.
Witnesses in the neighborhood reported seeing two black males running from the basement apartment at the time of the shooting and getting into a 4-door, light colored, small or mid-size sedan. The suspects’ vehicle was last seen leaving the area by way of Courthouse Road in Stafford County.
The victim of this homicide is Samih Mustafa Sowan. Samih Sowan had been renting an apartment at the Fife Street address and was the owner of the Subway on Walpole Street in Stafford County.
Mr. Sowan was known to frequent the Washington, D.C. and Baltimore City areas. Detectives investigating this case are hoping that the $50,000.00 reward will help motivate people who may have information that will help solve this brutal murder. This continues to be an ongoing investigation.
Anyone who may have information about this homicide is asked the call the Stafford County Sheriff’s Office at 540-658-4400, Stafford Crime Solvers (where callers may remain anonymous) at 540-659-2020 or TEXT “Stafford + your tip” to CRIMES (27463) or Sgt. Chris Cameron at 540-658-4450.
NORTH STAFFORD, Va. — Smile. You’re on candid camera from behind the wheel.
New video obtained by Potomac Local News shows a tractor trailer knocking over what the Virginia Department of Transportation calls a chevron sign on Interstate 95, at mile post 143 in Stafford County. The sign denotes an exit number, and, at six minutes into the video, a tractor trailer that has seen consistently swerving on the highway is crashes into the sign, knocking it over, and then continues on with its drive north.
The incident was caught on tape by a videographer who told Potomac Local News they wish to remain anonymous. The video is branded with a logo that states “bad drivers exposed.”
In an email conversation, the videographer stated the video was shot with a dashboard-mounted camera similar to what police officers use in their patrol cars. It’s also simlar to a camera used to capture footage of a meteor falling to earth over the skies of Russia earlier this year.
The video was obtained by Potomac Local on Wednesday, and VDOT spokeswoman Kelly Hannon said the sign was replaced the day before. The video was shot sometime between 7 and 8 o’clock in the morning, the videographer stated.
With its own YouTube page, this is “bad drivers exposed” 27th video posted to the site. It is the first “bad drivers” video to be shot in Virginia. The videographer used to produce bad drivers videos shot during a commute when the videographer lived in North Carolina.
“I started after one of my neighbors was killed by an irresponsible driver… Basically, even the nicest people can become animals when they’re driving as long as they think they’re anonymous,” stated the videographer in an email. “My intent is to remove anonymity, publish license plates, and shame people into driving safer.”
The videographer chooses to remain anonymous to protect family members, the email stated.
“Removing anonymity is a means, not an end. My aim is safety. If people drive safely; they remain anonymous. If I remain anonymous, my family remains safe,” the videographer stated in an email.
The video begins as the videographer’s vehicle is traveling in Fredericksburg and ends when the videographer exits I-95 at Aquia. A male voice can be heard on the video calling police and reporting the driver of the swerving tractor trailer. It’s unclear if the driver of the tractor trailer was ever stopped by police.