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Metro in doubt and CTE on the rise, Prince William rethinks economic development

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‘Jasper’ the Pit Bull gets second chance as police K9

Jasper, a two-year-old Pit Bull mix has a second chance and a job as a police K9. From the Prince William Humane Society press release:

The Prince William Humane Society teamed up with Off Leash K9 Training and the Throw Away Dogs Project to repurpose, train, and relocate one of their own rescue dogs to an Indiana Police Department.

Jasper is a two-year-old Pit Bull mix who was originally found as a stray and turned into the Prince William County Animal Shelter. Through their community partnership with the county shelter, the Prince William Humane Society transferred Jasper to their offsite adoption center and immediately set out to find his forever home. It became clear early on that his extreme high level of energy, loyalty, and ball drive made him destined for something unique and with a purpose to serve.

After two initial assessments by Nick White at Off Leash K9 Training, he paired us up with the wonderful people at the Throw Away Dogs Project who specialize in repurposing, training, and relocating unique dogs to positively impact our communities. Jasper’s progress through the program over the past several weeks has been amazing; the potential that this shelter dog demonstrated to his trainers is now becoming a reality.

Our K9 Jasper now has a job. Upon completion of his Narcotic Detection Training with the Throw Away Dogs Project, Jasper will head to Indiana to meet his new handler, live happily in his forever home, and serve the citizens of Kennard, Indiana as a member of the Kennard Police Department. From shelter to service – Jasper is the epitome of why all of us involved in animal welfare do what we do. Congratulations to Jasper and the amazing team at Throw Away Dogs Project for giving this sweet boy a second chance on life.

Prince William’s ‘moonshot goal’ to increase commercial tax base too ambiguous

On September 12th the Prince William Chamber of Commerce hosted its Policy Committee Meeting where we heard and engaged in a conversation with senior Prince William County Staff on the topic of the County’s Strategic Plan and more importantly, discussed the County’s “Moonshot Goal”.

The “Moonshot Goal” is to increase the percentage of commercial tax revenues to 35% of the County’s existing tax receipts. It is the only quantifiable goal in the approved plan, and it is ambiguous. The approved plan did not specify whether the goal was limited to real property taxes or to all taxes paid by businesses. The business community’s share of taxes is currently about 16% of all county real estate taxes, and roughly 24% of all general fund taxes collected.

In 2017 when this goal was first approved by the Board of County Supervisors, the Chamber’s Board of Directors was opposed to it…and, after hearing from County Staff on the “ins and outs” of the proposal, reaffirms that position.

An economic development goal for reducing the tax burden on county residents is laudable but goals should be achievable, strategic and measureable. Rather than relying on real estate taxes at a time when businesses are moving substantial portions of their infrastructure to the internet, the county needs to carefully review its policies and procedures to be sure that the government is strategically targeting those things that are important to the community and consistent with its long term goals. That will mean in large part that the county will update outdated policies and procedures to adapt to the new economy and diversify County revenue streams. In addition to the 35% goal being unattainable, focusing on a specific number for property taxes, like the “Moonshot Goal” will not create a diversified tax base, and will simply add to the cost of consumer goods and services within the community.

The 35% is a measurement, not a strategic goal. We strongly reaffirm our position from 2017 and encourage the Board of County Supervisors to revisit this issue and replace the measurement with a set of achievable, sustainable and measurable objectives for economic growth that will facilitate continued success for the business community and our residents.

Sincerely,

Betty Dean
Chairman
Prince William Chamber of Commerce

UMW poll shows Kaine ahead of Stewart, but race ‘likely to tighten up as the contest draws nearer’

The survey, conducted September 4-9 for UMW by the national research firm SSRS, found that Kaine had a 51 percent to 33 percent margin among registered voters and a 52 percent to 36 percent margin among likely voters. Libertarian candidate Matt Waters received 5 percent support in both subsets of Virginians.

Among all respondents, Kaine held a 49 percent to 30 percent advantage. The remaining respondents were uncertain or declined to express a preference.

“The latest Mary Washington survey demonstrates that Tim Kaine remains popular in Virginia,” said Stephen J. Farnsworth, professor of political science at the University of Mary Washington and director of its Center for Leadership and Media Studies. “But any statewide election in ‘purple’ Virginia is likely to tighten up as the contest draws nearer.”

About one-third of those surveyed said that President Trump would be a major factor in their Senate vote, and Kaine had the support of those voters by a 60 percent to 35 percent margin. Stewart has the support of 92 percent who said they voted for Trump two years ago, while 93 percent of the Hillary Clinton supporters back Kaine, who was Clinton’s vice presidential running mate in 2016.

The Clinton-Kaine ticket carried Virginia by more than five percentage points that year.

Among Democrats, 90 percent support Kaine. Stewart has the support of 73 percent of Republicans, and Kaine picks up 15 percent.

“By September, successful candidates usually have their partisans locked down,” Farnsworth said. “That so many Republicans favor Kaine at this point in the election is terrible news for Corey Stewart.”

There is evidence of a substantial gender gap in voter preferences. Women favored Kaine by a 52 percent to 27 percent margin. Among men, Stewart was ahead, 55 percent to 47 percent.

Among Stewart supporters, 39 percent said that immigration was the most important problem facing the country, followed by 18 percent identifying the economy and jobs. Among Kaine’s supporters, 29 percent said health care was the most important issue, as compared to 17 percent saying the economy and jobs.

Kaine has a huge advantage in Northern Virginia, where he enjoys a 63 percent to 20 percent margin, and in Tidewater, where he enjoys a 50 percent to 28 percent margin. Respondents in the western regions of the state backed Stewart by a 44 percent to 33 percent margin, his best regional performance.

Among levels of education, Stewart did best with those who did not graduate from high school, where he had a 42 percent to 29 percent advantage over Kaine. Kaine did best with those who had at least a college degree, where he had a 61 percent to 24 percent advantage.

White respondents were divided, with 42 percent expressing support for Kaine and 41 percent expressing support for Stewart. African Americans favored Kaine by 71 percent to 4 percent for Stewart, as compared to a 51 percent to 11 percent margin favoring Kaine among Latinos.

Survey Information:

The University of Mary Washington’s Virginia Survey Fall 2018 obtained telephone interviews with a representative sample of 801 adults, ages 18 or older, living in Virginia. Telephone interviews were conducted by landline (281) and cell phone (520). The survey was conducted by SSRS. Interviews were done in English from September 4 to 9, 2018. Statistical results are weighted to correct known demographic discrepancies. The margin of sampling error for the complete set of weighted data is ± 4.6 percentage points. For resulted based on registered voters [N=704] the margin of sampling error is ±5.0 percentage points. For resulted based on likely voters [N=512] the margin of sampling error is ±5.8 percentage points.

Prince William County encourages voting in-person, absentee

WOODBRIDGE — (Press Release) There is a general election on Nov. 6, and Prince William County encourages all eligible residents to vote. If you aren’t available to vote on Nov. 6, there are plenty of opportunities to vote absentee, which starts on Sept. 21.
 
The list for those who are eligible to vote absentee is rather broad and allows for absentee voting under a wide array of circumstances. Those include people living outside of the country, students attending college, commuters who will be away from the county for more than 11 hours between 7 a.m. and 9 p.m. on Election Day, first responders, those with a disability or illness, people with a religious obligation, and active duty military and their spouses, among others. Visit the Prince William County Office of Elections website at http://www.pwcvotes.com for a complete list of absentee voting qualifications.
 
People who wish to vote absentee will need to fill out an application https://www.elections.virginia.gov/Files/Forms/VoterForms/VirginiaAbsenteeBallotApplication.pdf and return it to the Office of Elections, located at 9250 Lee Avenue in Manassas, by Tuesday, Oct. 30, in order to request that a ballot be mailed.
 
The application can be completed in several ways. Registered voters, with the appropriate identification, who wish to vote absentee in-person can fill out the application at their designated absentee voting location and vote the same day. Designated absentee in-person voting locations in the county include:
 
· Office of Elections at 9250 Lee Avenue in Manassas
· Haymarket-Gainesville Community Library at 14870 Lightner Road in Haymarket
· Virginia Division of Motor Vehicles Office at 2713 Caton Hill Road in Woodbridge
 
People with a Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles license or identification card can register to vote online https://www.elections.virginia.gov/citizen-portal/index.html at the Virginia Department of Elections website.
Those who are not registered to vote will have to wait five days for a ballot to be issued, with the exception of military and overseas voters, according to the Virginia Department of Elections website.
The following is a list of significant voting dates:
 
Sept. 21, 2018 – Absentee voting begins.
Oct. 8, 2018 – The Office of Elections and all absentee voting locations are closed.
Oct. 15, 2018 – The last day to register for the November General Election.
Oct. 30, 2018 – The deadline to request a ballot by mail for the November General Election.
Nov. 3, 2018 – The last day to vote absentee in-person for the November General election.
Nov. 6, 2018 – Election Day.
For more information, call the Prince William County Office of Elections at 703-792-6470 or email pwcvote@pwcgov.org. Find sample ballots at https://www.pwcvotes.com/copy-of-photo-id.

Call to Action: Hurricane Florence, volunteer needs

Hello Prince William – Hurricane Florence is at the top of everyone’s mind along the east coast. My colleagues at the Cape Fear Volunteer Center in Wilmington, NC will be managing volunteers when it is safe to proceed. If you are interested in clearing debris, serving food, transporting supplies, answering phones and mucking out basements then please register on their website: http://www.capefearvolunteercenter.org. PLEASE DO NOT SELF DEPLOY! Keep the first responders safe and wait to be called. This is going to be a very long recovery.
 
· Youth for Tomorrow is looking for male mentors to share their time and talent with a young man. This promises to be a rewarding few hours per month, providing male youth with a positive role model to emulate. Please fill out the volunteer application at http://youthfortomorrow.org.
 
· Prince William Conservation Alliance needs volunteers for the continuing buffer restoration on Minnieville Road on 9/26, 10/3and10, 20 from 10am-12pm. Please RSVP to: alliance@pwconserve.org.
 
· Prince William Recycles Day on Saturday October 13th from 10am-2pm needs volunteers ages 12 and up to help with all the fun activities. This is a great teen project! Please contact Keep Prince William Beautiful at (571) 285-3772 or via email at: info@kpwb.org for all the latest info.
 
· The Salvation Army is gearing up for their Angel Tree Program this fall. Volunteers are needed to register families for just 2 hours a day on 9/17, 18, 19, 20 October 9, 10, 11 and 15th. at their Lake Ridge location. Please contact Shawnte Brown at (703) 580-8991 to share the joy of the season.
 
· The SERVE Shelter in Manassas is looking for volunteer groups to purchase, prepare and serve meals to the residents of the shelter. The dates needed are brunch on 10/6and 10/7, dinner on 10/14 and 10/28. Gather up your favorite recipes and friends to share with the families at SERVE. Please call Julie at (571) 748-2674 for more info.
 
· Meals on Wheels needs volunteers to deliver noon meals to homebound seniors throughout the community. These meals are delivered Monday-Friday, no weekends, holidays and during periods of inclement weather. It takes about 2 hours to do your route and certainly can pick you day. This is a perfect job if you can flex out of work for a little extra lunch period. Please call Melodee at (703) 792-4583 to learn more.
 
· Soroptimists International of Manassas is hosting Family Night Out events at local restaurants this fall. Visit Jukebox Diner in Manassas through Nov. 22, Foster’s Grille in Old Town Manassas Sep. 27 and The Bone in Old Town Manassas Oct. 25 – a portion of your receipt will help this organization with their scholarship fund. It’s a great way to get out of fixing dinner and support a worthy cause! Please email vlatimer6069@gmail.com for more information.
 
· Keep Prince William Beautiful needs volunteers to help them at community fairs and festivals by manning their booth for a couple of hours each day. You’ll receive all the training and information needed and this is a fun way to get out and meet people. Some of the dates needed are 9/23, 9/29, 9/30, 10/8 and 10/13. Please call Nicole to learn more at (571) 285-3772.
 
· Give the gift of literacy to local adults! Literacy Volunteers of America-Prince William is seeking volunteer tutors. Previous experience is not necessary. The next Tutor Training Workshop is November 3rd, 8:45 am-4pm and November 17th, 9am-12pm. Attendance both days is required. Please register at (703) 670-5702 or lvapw@aol.com.
 
· Prince William Forest Park is hosting National Public Lands Day September 22, 8:30am-1:00pm at Cabin Camp 2. Volunteers must be at least 10 years old. Please email Kerri at kerri_syrus@nps.gov to learn how you can help.
 
· Hylton Performing Arts Center is hosting Songwriting Series for Military Children, a three-part series of music and songwriting. Scheduled dates are September 22, October 6 and October 20, 1pm-3pm each day. The workshop is Free and open to military children ages 8-17. Kids can create their own song during the series and share it at Celebrating Veterans and the Arts at the Hylton Center on November 10. No prior experience necessary, and what a great way to honor our veterans! Please visit http://hyltoncenter.org/veterans for more information and to register.
 
· The Sweet Julia Grace Foundation needs volunteers to help at the Prince William Half Marathon Sunday, September 30. This super fun event is at Jiffy Lube Live! Tasks include handing out water to the runners or manning the beer garden. This is a family-friendly event for all ages 12 and up. Please visit their website for all the specifics at http://princewilliamhalfmarathon.com.
 
· Mark your calendars for the Walk to End Alzheimer’s on Saturday October 20 in Old Town Manassas. Volunteers are needed for set-up, refreshments, advocacy, finish line brigade and route monitoring. You can sign up online at http://bit.ly/ALZWalkManassas or email Ben at bedonnelly@alz.org to learn more.
 
· ACTS is seeking volunteer groups of all sizes to assist with ongoing landscaping and beautification of the Beverly Warren Emergency Shelter. Weekday/weekend opportunities are available. It’s a wonderful team project for your office, and a great way to give back to the community! Please visit http://actspwc.org, click on Volunteer and fill out a group application for consideration, or contact Tamika at tmartin2@actspwc.org to learn more.
 
· The Retired and Senior Volunteer Program is looking for volunteer’s age 55+ to deliver noon meals through the Meals on Wheels Program. Shifts are just 2-3 hours and available in throughout the greater area. RSVP members receive a mileage reimbursement and additional insurance coverage at no cost to the volunteer. Please call Jan at (571) 292-5307 to learn more.
 
· If you’re an administrative genius, Streetlight Community Ministries wants to meet you! They have an urgent need for volunteer office workers on weekdays to help with basic admin duties, along with those fun, last-minute projects that always spring up. Not only will you be supporting the staff, you’ll also be helping to support the homeless clients Streetlight serves, a win-win all around! Please email cbenner@thestreetlight.org to learn how you can make a difference.
 
If you are looking for other opportunities, please don’t forget to call my wonderful team at Volunteer Prince William. Jan can help you with the Retired and Senior Volunteer (RSVP) opportunities at (703) 369-5292 ext. 1, Shelley can help with any individual or group projects and send you weekly updates if you’d like. Shelley is at (703) 369-5292 ext. 2, and Bonnie can help you with opportunities available in Disaster Preparedness at (703) 369-5292 ext. 3. Please visit our website at http://www.volunteerprincewilliam.org. Thanks so much for all you do in our community.

Chick-fil-A Bristow’s charity golf tournament will benefit Patriot High School students working to make a better life

James Newman dreams of becoming a pilot. 

The 17-year-old student at Patriot High School is interested in all things aviation. Like most his age, he’s into video games. His favorite — a flight simulator. 

But before he can work is way into a career in the field of aviation, this teenager, like most is working a part-time job. He’s a barista at Starbucks. 

But, unlike other students, Newman is getting school credit for his work. 

He’s enrolled in a class called EMPLOY and life skills, where as many as 40 Patriot students, all with varying places on the autism spectrum, learn everything from basic life skills to the wherewithal of going out into the real world and working a job. 

“I come in with a smile. Even if its a crappy day, I try to make the customers happy,” said Newman.  

He’s worked at Starbucks for a year. Thanks to the EMPLOY class and his instructors, he’s learned simple tasks like how to make the correct change from a cash register to larger responsibilities, like household budgeting. 

“I knew what a paycheck was. I knew how to spend a paycheck but I didn’t know how to budget it,” he adds. 

Ryan Carter, 16, is also in the class. He’s into cooking food and riding rollercoasters. He’s got a YouTube channel of videos dedicated to the more than 80 coasters he’s ridden. 

To reach that number, he had to overcome his initial fear of coasters. Now, he hopes he can put that same determination into his future career. 

“I want to be a chef,” he said. 

He’s known for his own version of shrimp scampi, which includes a mixture of jumbo shrimp and jalapeño poppers. At home, and here at school, he’s encouraged to try new things. 

Tricia Weate and Brook Bell run the program at Patriot High School. Some students are enrolled in the life skills program where they get coaching on how to develop social skills and perform regular tasks. 

They learn the basics of kitchen food preparation and cooking, starting with washing hands, wearing gloves, using measuring cups, and it ends with making a meal.

They work the school’s mailroom, slotting mail for staff members to 237 mailboxes. They help set up and break down lunch shifts in the cafeteria.

In their classroom, they run a screen printing operation where they make t-shirts to raise awareness for autism.  

Other students in the program leave campus and go to restaurants and retail stores, where they work alongside their fellow employees. At Nando’s Peri Peri in Gainesville, some students greet restaurant guests, while others make food. At Fosters Grill, students deliver food. 

“They’re brilliant. We just want the community to see what we see,” said Bell. 

And some businesses have, like Smoothie King, which began providing their EMPLOY student workers with instructions on how to make drinks using color codes. It makes the process easier for them to understand. 

The instructors work with at least 20 community businesses and are always looking for more on which to partner. Some students are paid, while some work for class credit. 

“It’s not free labor. It’s also not ‘you’re so cute, let me help you out,” said Weate. “We want them to treat them like they treat their own staff.” 

“We don’t want sugar-coating. We want the real deal,” added Bell. 

The instructors are always looking for more funding for materials to teach their students, whether it be measuring cups or a replacement cash register to use in the classroom, something the program is in need of. 

The Second Annual Chick-fil-A Bristow Charity Golf Tournament on September 22 at Broad Run Golf & Practice Facility aims to do just that. The 18-hole four, four-person team event will welcome players at 8 a.m. for registration, and then they’ll take to the course for a 9 a.m. shotgun start. 

Chick-fil-A Bristow is looking for golfers for the event. It’s $75 for the public, $60 for cardholders, and $40 for full Broad Run Members. It includes a golf cart, range, and a lunch buffet. 

They’re also in need of corporate sponsors for the event. If you’re interested in playing or sponsoring, Chick-fil-A’s Susan Campbell would love to hear from you.

The proceeds from this charity golf tournament will go to benefit the children enrolled in the EMPLOY and life skills program at Patriot High School. 

“Without them starting this EMPLOY program, I would not have a job,” said Newman. “This class shows me there are many options out there for me.” 

Dedicated to her job, motivated by family, Sentara tech celebrates son’s recent success

It’s National Environmental Services Week. Environmental Service technicians play a critical role in the day to day operations of Sentara Northern Virginia Medical Center.

While you may see these members of the team focused on keeping our hospital clean and free of healthcare-associated infections (HAIs), there is more to this dedicated staff, filled with people like Barbara Boateng.

For the last two years, Barbara has worked at Sentara Northern Virginia Medical Center. She’s quick to offer a smile and a helping hand, making sure the medical offices and hospital rooms are cleaned to Sentara Healthcare’s rigorous standards.  

“Barbara is truly one of our shining stars within Sentara and the Sentara Northern Virginia Environmental Services Department. She exemplifies everything wonderful about working in healthcare,” explains Barbara’s boss, Kevin Smith, Director of Environmental Services.

While Barbara is dedicated to her job, she’s motivated by her family. She and her husband, Clement, immigrated to the U.S. from Ghana to provide a better life for their three children. Earlier this summer, years of hard work paid off when the family’s eldest son, Akwasi, graduated from college with a criminal justice degree and a minor in information technology.

“We were so happy! It’s exciting to see your son striving to fulfill his dreams and then accomplishing them. We were so proud!” says Barbara, remembering the moment she saw her son crossing the stage and receiving his diploma from Radford University.

It’s a hope every parent has for their child.

“The dream I have for my children is for all of them to become successful in the future in everything they pursue,” explains Barbara.

Her son graduating from college is the culmination of that. It’s something he realizes.

“After all the hard work, I could finally say I made it across the stage. I was very grateful to have them by my side to support me throughout my college years. It was definitely a joyful moment, I felt like a proud son,” Akwasi explains.

This achievement is something Akwasi doesn’t take for granted, he realizes the immense sacrifices his parents have made for him, his brother and sister.

They have dedicated their lives to helping us achieve, by supporting us in everything we do and making sure we get everything we need.”

Smith sees Barbara’s hard work and determination every day.

“Barbara working at Sentara to put her son through college and watching him graduate is truly a wonderful achievement and should be an inspiration to many, that anything is possible in this country.”

Smith says Barbara represents the commitment that exists within his department and the hospital.

“Sentara Northern Virginia Medical Center, just like the community it serves, is home to a very diverse workforce. The diversity of our staff allows the hospital team to reach our patients in some ways that many hospitals may struggle. Barbara is a perfect example of how you can come to this country, work hard, and achieve things for yourself and your family that may not be possible in your country of origin.”

This Environmental Services Week (September 9 – 15), Smith is celebrating his team and heralding their accomplishments.

Multiple service techs have earned the national healthcare accreditation, “CHEST,” or Certified Healthcare Environmental Services Technician.  Several others will participate in another CHEST training later this year. The certification indicates the user is skilled in the most effective and innovative technologies in infection prevention. 

“Our Environmental Service technicians are the first line of defense and have played a vital role in Sentara Healthcare initiatives. I’m just so proud of my team!” says Smith.

To learn more about joining Sentara Northern Virginia Medical Center’s award-winning team, visit sentaracareers.com.

Smart Beginnings Greater Prince William Executive Director Kendra Kielbasa relocates

Smart Beginnings Greater Prince William’s Executive Director Kendra Kielbasa has decided to relocate with her husband who has accepted a new position in Pennsylvania. She will continue to support the organization during the transition. From the press release:

Leadership Transition at Smart Beginnings Greater Prince William
From Larry Hughes, Chairman Smart Beginnings Greater Prince William (SBGPW)

It is with mixed emotions that I share this update with you. Kendra Kielbasa, our Executive Director, has moved to State College, Pennsylvania to join her husband who accepted a new position in that area. While we are happy for Kendra and the opportunities that await her, we are very sad to see her leave. Fortunately, Kendra has agreed to continue to provide support to SBGPW during the transition.

Under Kendra’s leadership, we have made great strides for young children and their families in our community. We are grateful for her relationship-building skills that have fostered partnerships and collaborations and have brought in a team of highly adept volunteers who provide the backbone for our programs and initiatives. We wish to thank Kendra for dedication which resulted in numerous achievements, including:

An increase of over 1,100% of at-risk four-year-olds who receive quality pre-school through Virginia Preschool Initiative (VPI)
Providing over 6,000 newborns their first book and literacy support kit through Books 4 Babies
Launching Directors Forums which support the professional development, networking, and collaboration of area child care directors
Partnering with higher education (NOVA) to provide professional development and training to over 300 early childhood professionals
Establishing of our School Readiness Committee which provides Parenting Education and Support, and professional development to Early Childhood Professionals
Distributing over 2,000 literacy kits to rising kindergarteners who have never been to preschool
Smart Beginnings 4 Tomorrow’s Workforce, a sold-out event highlighting the business case for early childhood. Key-note speakers and collaborators were from Lockheed Martin and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, Center for Education and Workforce
Healthy Initiatives and Obesity Prevention training through CDC and Nemours Health Initiative, benefiting thousands of area children in a childcare setting.

It is our intent and priority to continue the work and growth that SBGPW is experiencing. This is a priority for Kendra and our entire Board of Directors. Here is what you need to know:

Our priorities remain the same; 1) Increase pre-literacy skills, 2) Increase access to high quality early learning, 3) comprehensive health, and 4) increased community awareness of the critical window of opportunity that exists during early childhood.

Kendra, kkielbasa@smartbeginningsgpw.org will continue to support SBGPW with consulting and coordination services on a modified schedule until a new Executive Director is identified.
 
Gina Parr, gparr@smartbeginningsgpw.org remains as our part-time Outreach Liaison.
 
Sharon Henry, Executive Director, SPARK, remains as the fiscal agent for SBGPW.
 
The following initiatives will continue as follows throughout the current school year:
 
School Readiness Committee – Chairman, Debi Stepien, dstep211@gmail.com. Typically meets the 4th Tuesday of the month at the Head Start Offices, 14715 Joplin Rd., Manassas, 20112 from 9:30 am – 11:00 am. The next meeting is on September 25th.
 
Parent Training and Engagement will continue through the School Readiness Committee. There is a calendar of scheduled presentations throughout the school year.
 
The Directors Forums will continue a regular schedule. This committee is part of the School Readiness Committee.
 
Books 4 Babies will continue to provide books and support materials to newborns at Novant Health UVA Prince William Medical Center and Novant Health UVA Haymarket Medical Center.
 
In-person representation on advisory boards, committees, boards, etc. will be picked-up by SBGPW Board members or Volunteers. Please reach out to Kendra to see how this will best work for your organization.
 
We can not thank Kendra enough for her leadership, dedication, and passion. She will truly be missed by the Board, staff, volunteers, and partners. We look forward to following her and are happy about the opportunity for Kendra and her family. With your continued support, we will remain diligent in our quest to increase kindergarten readiness, both as an educational initiative and as a workforce development initiative. If you have questions during this transition, you may reach out to Kendra at kkielbasa@smartbeginningsgpw.org or Sharon Henry at henrysw@pwcs.edu.
 
Sincerely,
Larry Hughes, Chairman, Board of Directors, Smart Beginnings Greater Prince William
 
From Kendra Kielbasa, Executive Director, Smart Beginnings Greater Prince William
 
After nearly seven years with Smart Beginnings Greater Prince William (SBGPW), it is time to transition to a different role. I’ll be joining my husband in Pennsylvania where he has relocated due to a new career opportunity. While I have a mix of emotions as I move into this next chapter, I am confident the forward momentum in our local early childhood initiatives will continue to grow at an increasing rate.
 
I am so grateful to those individuals and organizations who have been supportive of both SBGPW and me personally over the years. This gratitude extends to board members, volunteers, partners, and funders. You have grown this organization, made it what it is, and the laid the groundwork for what is yet to come. I am honored and humbled to have had the opportunity to lead this organization as we have grown in both awareness and improved early childhood well-being in our area. I look forward with much anticipation to see the growth that I know is coming.
 
All the best,
Kendra

Stewart proposes $1 billion bond for county infrastructure spending

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New ad campaign aims to change the stigma of senior living centers

 
The thought of checking mom or dad into a senior living home usually doesn’t evoke smiles. 
 
A new advertising campaign aims to change that.
 
Thrive Senior Living, the company that owns and operates Tribute at The Glen in Woodbridge and Tribute and Heritage Village in Gainesville, has launched a new tongue-in-cheek advertising campaign to call attention to the changing face of senior care.
 
Their campaign features cheeky statements like, “They built you a mother-in-law suite. Too bad it comes with a son-in-law,” and “There’s a very good chance she could leave it all to the dog. We’ll give you a leg up.”  
 
“At Thrive, we believe standards for senior living have been too low for too long,” said Les Strech, President of Thrive, in a press release. “The benchmark of ‘providing great care’ causes residents to feel like objects in need of care — rather than individuals with a purpose and a great deal to offer others.  Thrive creates an environment where older adults can build new and meaningful relationships, and ‘great care’ follows as a natural result. Our new campaign intentionally crosses a line and illustrates our non-traditional approach. While we can grow gardenias and bake a killer cupcake with the best of them, this campaign illustrates our commitment to our residents’ greater wellbeing and sense of purpose.”
 
“When I first got involved with the senior living industry, I was honestly mortified, and I started looking into what our competitors were like. There was no life in the building, there was no energy, there was no excitement, you could tell there wasn’t a lot of thought put into the design. With that very first community I vowed, I’m going to do this differently,” said Jeremy Ragsdale, president and founder, in an interview on the company’s YouTube channel.
 
Thrive Senior Living provides assisted living and memory care communities that are disrupting the industry of elder care. Rather than simply providing a care facility, they are creating communities where seniors can thrive instead of just surviving. Seniors enjoy amenities like cocktail hours and fine dining. They promote independence and assist their members 24 hours a day.  
 
Thrive currently operates communities in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Maryland, Ohio, South Carolina, Texas, and Virginia.
 
This post is brought to you by Home Instead Senior Care of Manassas whose caregivers work with senior residents at Tribute at The Glen in Woodbridge and Tribute and Heritage Village in Gainesville every day. 
 
 

Dam owners urged to lower lake levels ahead of hurricane

Dam owners in Virginia are advised to consult with a professional engineer about possibly lowering lake levels by up to 6 inches per day ahead of Hurricane Florence. From the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) press release:

Advisory to Virginia Dam Owners ahead of Hurricane Florence
 
RICHMOND, Va. — As of Monday Sept. 10, the National Weather Service has forecasted the potential for a major hurricane-level storm event in Virginia within the next week. Rainfall projections are currently forecasted to be from approximately 10 to 20 inches in some areas of the state if the storm were to slow down or “stall.”
 
In preparation for this potential storm event, the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation Dam Safety Program is offering the following information to dam owners.
 
1. Reach out to your professional engineer and discuss the specifics of your dam and what to do during an emergency situation.
2. Locate and review your dam’s emergency action plan if one is in place. Ensure that all contacts and contact information are up-to-date. Provide any updates to the local emergency services contact and DCR Dam Safety.
3. If your dam has a working low-flow valve, you as the dam owner should consider consulting with your professional engineer about possibly lowering your lake level by up to 6 inches per day (24-hour period). By lowering the normal water level in your lake, you provide extra storage for when rainfall begins. Note that lowering lake levels by more than 6 inches per day is not allowed as rapid drawdown of a lake level could result in critical damage to your dam.
4. Visually inspect your dam and remove any debris from the primary and emergency spillways. Contact your professional engineer if any dam-related issues are found (seepage, slope failures, rodent holes, etc.)
 
For information about the Virginia Dam Safety Program, go to http://www.dcr.virginia.gov/dam-safety-and-floodplains.

OmniRide encouraging participation in ‘Try Transit Week’ and ‘Car Free Day’

OmniRide is encouraging mass participation in two initiatives: Try Transit Week and Car Free Day. From the press release:

Try Transit Week and Car Free Day Encourage Driving Alternatives

 Pledge to participate and win some great prizes

WOODBRIDGE, VA – OmniRide is encouraging everyone to participate in two upcoming events designed to highlight alternatives to driving alone.

Try Transit Week will be held September 17-21, and Car Free Day is being expanded this year to span two days – September 21 and 22. These promotions are opportunities for area residents to consider using public transportation, sharing a ride with others, teleworking and helping to reduce the number of vehicles on our roadways.

“Public transportation riders save time and money by traveling in Express Lanes, taking advantage of free parking, and reducing the number of times they have to put fuel in their vehicle. They also have the advantage of a relaxing commute so they arrive at their destinations stress-free,” said OmniRide Executive Director Bob Schneider.

Registration for both September events is now open, and participants can qualify for great prizes this year even if they already use transit!

Those who pledge to try transit during Try Transit Week are automatically entered for a chance to win one year of free transit service from a participating Virginia transit operator as well as a pair of round-trip tickets aboard Amtrak’s Northeast Regional train! But that’s not all! Participating transit providers, including OmniRide, are offering additional prizes. OmniRide will award one lucky winner with a $50 SmarTrip card, and two additional winners will each receive $25 SmarTrip cards.

Try Transit Week is sponsored by the Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation. Pledges will be accepted through September 21, 2018 at TryTransitWeek.org/pledge.

Car Free Day was expanded to two days this year to allow more people to participate and qualify for prize drawings. Those who can’t go without their car for a day or two are encouraged to go Car-Lite by reducing the number of solo vehicle trips they make and sharing any rides with others. Even small gestures like that help to make the air cleaner and the roads less congested!

Everyone who pledges to go Car Free or Car-Lite on one or both days will be eligible to win prizes including $25 SmarTrip cards, Giant grocery gift cards, KIND Healthy Snacks gift bags, an Apple iPod, Capital Bikeshare memberships, and more.  Car Free Day is sponsored locally by Commuter Connections. Register for Car Free Day at CarFreeMetroDC.org.                                                                                                                                                                 

About Us

The Potomac and Rappahannock Transportation Commission (PRTC), operating as OmniRide, provides express and local bus services as well as ridesharing services in Prince William County, the City of Manassas and the City of Manassas Park. It also co-sponsors the Virginia Railway Express in partnership with the Northern Virginia Transportation Commission.

Call to Action: This week’s volunteer openings from Volunteer Prince William

Good Morning Prince William – Serve our Willing Warriors invites you to their golf tournament on Monday, September 17th at Westfields Golf Club in Clifton. This is a great way to gather your friends and enjoy the day in support of our veterans. It includes golf, breakfast, lunch, prizes and gifts for a reduced fee of $165/ player. They also want to sponsor 20 warriors for the day so far they have 11 sponsored please consider helping the other 9 warriors enjoy the day. Please register online at willingwarriors.org/golf
 
· Prince William Recycles Day on Saturday October 13th from 10am-2pm needs volunteers ages 12 and up to help with all the fun activities. This is a great teen project! Please contact Keep Prince William Beautiful at (571) 285-3772 or via email at: info@kpwb.org for all the latest info.
 
· CASA Children’s Intervention Services needs volunteer advocates. You’ll receive all the needed training to make an impact on a child’s welfare and safety in a permanent loving home. Please email Suzanne at:smitchell@casacis.org to learn more.
 
· The Salvation Army is gearing up for their Red Kettle Campaign this fall. Volunteers are needed throughout the community to man the kettles. This is a great opportunity for families; youth groups as teen are welcome if they are accompanied by an adult. Please contact Lt. Rachel Orona at (571) 363-1783 or via email at: Rachel.orona@uss.salvationarmy.org for all the specifics.
 
· Soroptimists International of Manassas is hosting Family Night Outevents at local restaurants this fall. Visit Jukebox Diner in Manassas Aug. 23-Nov. 22, Foster’s Grille in Old Town Manassas Sep. 27 and The Bone in Old Town Manassas Oct. 25 – a portion of your receipt will help this organization with their scholarship fund. It’s a great way to get out of fixing dinner and support a worthy cause! Please email vlatimer6069@gmail.com for more information.
 
· Keep Prince William Beautiful needs volunteers to help them at community fairs and festivals by manning their booth for a couple of hours each day. You’ll receive all the training and information needed and this is a fun way to get out and meet people. Some of the dates needed are 9/15, 9/23, 9/29, 9/30, 10/8 and 10/13. Please call Nicole to learn more at (571) 285-3772.
 
· Give the gift of literacy to local adults! Literacy Volunteers of America-Prince William is seeking volunteer tutors. Previous experience is not necessary. The next Tutor Training Workshop is November 3rd, 8:45 am-4pm and November 17th, 9am-12pm. Attendance both days is required. Please register at (703) 670-5702 or lvapw@aol.com.
 
· Prince William Forest Park is hosting two fun events: Heritage FestSeptember 15 at Cabin Camp 4, 11am-5pm and National Public Lands Day September 22, 8:30am-1:00pm at Cabin Camp 2. Volunteers for Sep. 15 can be any age; volunteers for Sep. 22 must be at least 10 years old. Please email Kerri at kerri_syrus@nps.gov to learn how you can help.
 
· Hylton Performing Arts Center is hosting Songwriting Series for Military Children, a three-part series of music and songwriting. Scheduled dates are September 22, October 6 and October 20, 1pm-3pm each day. The workshop is Free and open to military children ages 8-17. Kids can create their own song during the series and share it at Celebrating Veterans and the Arts at the Hylton Center on November 10. No prior experience necessary, and what a great way to honor our veterans! Please visit HyltonCenter.org/veterans for more information and to register.
 
· The Sweet Julia Grace Foundation needs volunteers to help at the Prince William Half Marathon Sunday, September 30. This super fun event is at Jiffy Lube Live! Tasks include handing out water to the runners or manning the beer garden. This is a family-friendly event for all ages 12 and up. Please visit their website for all the specifics at http://princewilliamhalfmarathon.com.
 
· Mark your calendars for the Walk to End Alzheimer’s on Saturday October 20 in Old Town Manassas. Volunteers are needed for set-up, refreshments, advocacy, finish line brigade and route monitoring. You can sign up online at http://bit.ly/ALZWalkManassas or email Ben at: bedonnelly@alz.org to learn more.
 
· ACTS is seeking volunteer groups of all sizes to assist with ongoing landscaping and beautification of the Beverly Warren Emergency Shelter. Weekday/weekend opportunities are available. It’s a wonderful team project for your office, and a great way to give back to the community! Please visit actspwc.org click on Volunteer and fill out a group application for consideration, or contact Tamika at tmartin2@actspwc.org to learn more.
 
· The Retired and Senior Volunteer Program is looking for volunteer’s age 55+ to deliver noon meals through the Meals on Wheels Program. Shifts are just 2-3 hours and available in throughout the greater area. RSVP members receive a mileage reimbursement and additional insurance coverage at no cost to the volunteer. Please call Jan at (571) 292-5307 to learn more.
 
· If you’re an administrative genius, Streetlight Community Ministrieswants to meet you! They have an urgent need for volunteer office workers on weekdays to help with basic admin duties, along with those fun, last-minute projects that always spring up. Not only will you be supporting the staff, you’ll also be helping to support the homeless clients Streetlight serves, a win-win all around! Please email cbenner@thestreetlight.org to learn how you can make a difference.
 
· Youth for Tomorrow is looking for male mentors to share their time and talent with a young man. This promises to be a rewarding few hours per month, providing male youth with a positive role model to emulate. Please fill out the volunteer application at http://youthfortomorrow.org.
 
If you are looking for other opportunities, please don’t forget to call my wonderful team at Volunteer Prince William. Jan can help you with the Retired and Senior Volunteer (RSVP) opportunities at (703) 369-5292 ext. 1, Shelley can help with any individual or group projects and send you weekly updates if you’d like. Shelley is at (703) 369-5292 ext. 2, and Bonnie can help you with opportunities available in Disaster Preparedness at (703) 369-5292 ext. 3. Please visit our website at http://www.volunteerprincewilliam.org. Thanks so much for all you do in our community.

5 Questions: An inside peek at the life of Sam Hill, Ed.D., Provost of Northern Virginia Community College (NOVA)

If you’ve ever wondered how local CEOs, top executives, and leaders really live, then you’ll enjoy this Q&A with Sam Hill, Ed.D. Hill is Provost of Northern Virginia Community College (NOVA) Woodbridge Campus. The college, comprised of six campuses — two of which are in Prince William County — is the largest public educational institution in Virginia and the second-largest community college in the U.S.

Having more than 75,000 students and 2,600 faculty and staff members, NOVA is also one of the most internationally diverse colleges in the nation, with a student body representing more than 180 countries. Here’s an inside look at the life of one of NOVA’s key figures.

Q&A with Sam Hill, Ed.D., Provost of Northern Virginia Community College (NOVA)

Who inspires you?

I’m inspired by the commitment of the students we serve to improve their life situation to become greater contributing members of our community. Many of these students are pursuing a college education while dealing with challenging circumstances. You can’t help but be inspired and committed to making it possible for them to realize their goals. We will be a better community as a result. I’m also inspired by the commitment of the county leaders to economic development and the quality of life in our region. NOVA is a major partner in making this happen.

What did you eat for breakfast this morning?

It wasn’t healthy and not to be copied, and not my normal breakfast. I had a banana, a sausage and egg sandwich followed by four pieces of chocolate.

What’s your favorite place to hang out?

Bikram Hot Yoga studio with my wife.

If you owned an exotic animal, what would it be and why?

I’ve owned a python and a mongoose (at the same time). The mongoose was a house pet. The python was caged and outside. I also raised white mice for the python and the pythons at the zoo at the University of Liberia.

What’s the last thing you did that surprised you?

Getting a hole-in-one at Laurel Hill Golf Club. That was my second one, but this time I had witnesses.

Sponsored by Prince William County Department of Economic Development

• Located less than 20 miles from the nation’s capital, Prince William County encompasses a total area of 348 square miles.

• Prince William County’s favorable blend of large land parcels, multi-use zoned sites, incentives, reliable power and ample fiber optic availability coupled with the lowest programmable computer taxes in the region, make it an ideal location for businesses seeking a location in the Mid-Atlantic region. 

• 75% of Northern Virginia’s 1.5 million workers live within a 30-minute one-way commute to the center of Prince William County during rush hour. • Prince William County provides access to an outstanding talent pool of highly-skilled, culturally diverse labor; 42% of the workforce has 4-year degrees.

• Prince William County carries a AAA bond rating from all three of the major credit ratings agencies (Fitch, Moody’s and S&P).

Job: Human Resources Benefits Specialist

Rappahannock Electric Cooperative (REC) is a progressive member owned utility with a service area that spreads from the Blue Ridge Mountains to the tidal waters of the Chesapeake Bay.

REC serves over 165,000 connections in portions of 22 Virginia counties. REC has a job opening for the position of Benefits Specialist.

Applicant must have an Associate’s degree in business administration or human resources or equivalent. Additional college level courses relating to job performance preferred. PHR, SPHR, SHRM-CP, SHRM-SCP, or CEBS certification a plus.

  • Must have eight (8) years of current benefits experience where responsibilities have progressively increased. Additional experience in one or more of the areas of human resources administration, i.e., personnel, recruitment, or payroll highly desired.
  • Must be able to compose clear, concise and grammatically correct written communications with attention to detail a must.
  • Must be able to communicate with individuals and small groups in a clear and effective manner.
  • Must have strong PC ability (preferably Microsoft Office and Windows).
  • Must have the ability to handle multiple priorities, be detail oriented and possess good data entry and communication skills.
  • Must be able to organize, plan, schedule and coordinate with minimal or no supervision.
  • Must be able to initiate and complete projects with little outside direction or help.
  • Must exhibit a professional appearance and manner in dealing with others and work to maintain constructive working relationships.
  • Ability to research information and analyze data to arrive at valid conclusions required.
  • Must have the ability to collect, compile and analyze information and data, and interpret and apply laws and policies.
  • Knowledge in business and labor laws, labor relations, insurance, payroll, training, planning and administration principles and practices strongly preferred.
  • Work will be primarily performed in the Fredericksburg office with occasional trips to the districts. Attendance of seminars and conferences several times a year is also required. Extra hours may be required during emergencies or workload demands.

Candidates interested in applying for this position should submit their cover letter with salary requirements and resume by 9/20/2018 to: Job Code# 51FB09062018 – REC – Human Resources, P.O. Box 7388, Fredericksburg, VA 22404 or e-mail to rechr@myrec.coop or fax to 540-891-5990.

This institution is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

Job: Human Resources Talent Engagement & Planning Specialist (Recruiter)

Rappahannock Electric Cooperative (REC) is a progressive member-owned utility with a service area that spreads from the Blue Ridge Mountains to the tidal waters of the Chesapeake Bay.

REC serves over 165,000 connections in portions of 22 Virginia counties. REC is seeking an energetic, proactive, and outgoing self-starter to serve as the Human Resources Talent Engagement & Planning Specialist.

Associate’s degree required. Additional college level courses related to job also preferred. PHR, SPHR, SHRM-CP, or SHRM-SCP a plus. Must have five (5) years of current recruiting/talent acquisition experience where responsibilities have progressively increased.

Additional experience in other areas of human resources desired. Develops recruitment strategies to achieve required staffing levels. Works with managers to develop specific recruiting and succession plans.

  • Develops and maintains professional relationships with college, university, and community college placement offices as a source to generate qualified applicants. Directs the efforts of employment agencies and search firms, including negotiating and controlling employment-related fees.
  • Schedules and attends job/career fairs with appropriate staff to generate qualified applicants. Provides information on company operations and job opportunities to potential applicants. Screens and refers qualified applicants to hiring manager for interviewing.
  • May provide initial screening to obtain work history, education, training, job skills, and salary requirements.
  • Develops and conducts training programs for managers with a goal of improving recruiting and hiring efficiencies and reducing turnover.
  • Researches, analyzes, prepares and presents hiring and statistics. Maintains records on recruiting activities as required.
  • Participates in development of annual recruiting budget. Must be able to compose clear, concise, and grammatically correct written communications with attention to detail.
  • Must be able to communicate with individuals and small groups in a clear and effective manner.
  • Must be able to work with a wide variety of individuals both internal and external to the Cooperative.
  • Must demonstrate initiative to seek out and act upon solutions. Must have the ability to handle multiple priorities and be detail oriented.
  • Must be outgoing, proactive, and able to engage others through personality.
  • Must be enthusiastic, energetic, passionate, outgoing, approachable, and optimistic.
  • Must also be competitive, tenacious, and creative.
  • Must be able to organize, plan, schedule and coordinate with minimal or no supervision.
  • Must be able to initiate and complete projects with little outside direction or help.
  • Must exhibit a professional appearance and manner in dealing with others and work to maintain constructive working relationships. Must have a team-player attitude.
  • Must be able to research information and analyze data to arrive at valid conclusions required.
  • Knowledge in human resources related field, business and labor laws, labor relations, insurance, payroll, training, planning and administration principles and practices strongly preferred.
  • Work will be primarily performed in the Fredericksburg office with occasional trips to the district locations.
  • Attendance of seminars and conferences several times a year is also required. Extra hours may be required during emergencies or workload demands.

Candidates interested in applying for this position should submit their cover letter with salary requirements and resume by 9/20/2018 to: Job Code# 49FB09062018 – REC – Human Resources, P.O. Box 7388, Fredericksburg, VA 22404 or e-mail to rechr@myrec.coop or fax to 540-891-5990.

This institution is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

Prince William Humane Society to hold Paws-N-Pints fundraiser

From the Prince William Humane Society press release on the Paws-N-Pints fundraiser:

Paws-N-Pints is Coming!

The Prince William Humane Society’s 6th Annual Paws-N-Pints fund-raising event and silent auction will take place on Sunday, October 7th, 2018, from 12 – 5 p.m. at 2 Silos Brewing Company on the 8-acre Farm Brew LIVE at Innovation campus in Manassas, VA.  This year our fund-raising efforts will go to support Prince William Humane Society programs including our new Fur-Ever Together Pet Retention Program that is intended to preserve the loving bond between pet owners and pets, reduce shelter intake, and prevent pet homelessness. 

 Prince William Humane Society is a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit animal welfare organization whose mission is to promote animal welfare, increase homeless pet adoptions, and enhance the quality of life for people and their pets.  This past year we saved over 350 lives and we remain committed to realizing our vision in which all citizens regard companion animals as lifelong, valued family members, and embrace their responsibility for the welfare of animals.  

Formerly known as ‘Wags-N-Wine’, Paws-N-Pints is our largest fundraiser of the year and we are thrilled to be holding this year’s event at 2 Silos Brewery.  Come join us for an afternoon of fun and frolic with our adorable adoptable pets!  2 Silos Brewery features craft beers, wine and cider for tasting, excellent food and gourmet ice cream.  This amazing event will include live music, games, and fun for the entire family!  We welcome those from across DC, MD and the VA area to participate in what promises to be a fabulous day.

Tickets are $45 in advance ($50 at the door) and include:  Beer or Wine tasting, a commemorative souvenir glass, event t-shirt, a goody bag, a raffle ticket, bandanas for your furry family members and lots of fun.   And, for an extra special afternoon, check out our VIP Experience on our website and other special offers.

Tickets are available online at www.PWHumane.org or stop by our Adopt Shop at:

17983 Dumfries Shopping Plaza (Rte 1), Dumfries, VA 22026

Please call 703-634-0880 for more information and for group reservations!

Virginia State Police: ‘It’s nothing short of alarming to have a 140 percent increase in fatalities compared to last year.’

From the Virginia State Police press release:

TRAFFIC FATALITIES ON VIRGINIA HIGHWAYS MORE THAN DOUBLE DURING LABOR DAY WEEKEND COMPARED TO 2017

Every hour approximately 11 motorists cited for seat belt violations

RICHMOND
– Traffic deaths in Virginia reached a three-year high during the 2018 Labor Day weekend. According to preliminary reports, a dozen individuals were killed in 11 fatal crashes during the four-day statistical counting period (12:01 a.m. Aug. 31, 2018 – 12 a.m. Sept. 3, 2018), which marks the highest number of crashes recorded since 2015 when 16 fatalities occurred over the holiday weekend. In 2017, there were five traffic crashes on Virginia’s highways.

This year’s 11 holiday fatal crashes took place in the counties of Carroll, Culpeper, Fairfax, Page, Prince William, Smyth, Tazewell and York and the cities of Lawrenceville, Newport News and  Norfolk. These crashes claimed the lives of three motorcyclists, a motorcycle passenger and three pedestrians. Of the remaining five crashes, two involved individuals who were not wearing a seat belt.

“For most, Labor Day marks the close of summer, the last neighborhood cookout and the start of a new school year, but for 12 families – the families of those who experienced the loss of a loved one this weekend – this holiday is forever changed, ” said Col. Gary T. Settle, Virginia State Police Superintendent. “It’s nothing short of alarming to have a 140 percent increase in fatalities  compared to last year. What’s more surprising is that many of the crashes we see on Virginia’s highways could be prevented if we all do our part toward safety. That means buckling up, never driving impaired and always keeping our focus on the road.”

Once again this year, Virginia State Police participated in Operation C.A.R.E. (Crash Awareness and Reduction Effort), which is a state-sponsored, national traffic safety initiative intended to reduce crashes, fatalities and injuries due to impaired driving, speed and failing to wear a seat belt through increased law enforcement visibility and traffic enforcement during major holidays.

During the 2018 Labor Day weekend, Virginia State Police troopers cited 8,427 speeders and 2,050 reckless drivers. They also issued citations for 1,024 occupant restraint violations, including 227 to adult motorists who failed to secure a juvenile passenger in a child safety seat, booster seat or seat belt. In addition, 72 drunk drivers were arrested and charged with DUI.

Funds generated from summonses issued by Virginia State Police go directly to court fees and the state’s Literary Fund, which benefits public school construction, technology funding and teacher retirement.

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