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July 28, 2021

Neighbors,

It's hard to believe that the summer has gone by so quickly but in less than four weeks (Aug. 23) our students will be heading back to school for in-person learning. Our children's health remains a priority (especially with cases rising due to the delta variant) and Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) has provided mask guidance for students and staff. For students 12 and older, FCPS is holding school-based vaccination clinics and is encouraging everyone who is eligible to be vaccinated.

The county's School Age Child Care (SACC) program is also returning to its regular schedule to enable working parents to have safe and affordable child care. Learn more, including how to register your child.

If you enjoy working with children there are several job opportunities available through FCPS and the county:

Before we head into the fall, my staff will be taking some well deserved vacation time in the coming weeks and I hope you will have a chance to take some time to re-charge as well. There are no Board of Supervisors meetings or task force meetings scheduled for August. We are also taking a two week break from publishing this newsletter and will return on Aug. 18. You can always find past issues here. As always, if you have a question or concern, you can email me at huntermill@fairfaxcounty.gov

Enjoy the rest of your summer and stay safe!

Respectfully,
Walter
COVID-19 Information (July 28)
Weekly COVID-19 Case/Vaccine Information Chart:
Data resources:


Current Number of Cases in the Fairfax Health District
  • Daily reported case information for the Fairfax Health District: here
  • Daily reported case information throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia: here
July's Adoptable Pet of the Month: Bennie
Looking for a small, furry pet? The Animal Shelter has several guinea pigs available for adoption. Our summer intern Christina got to meet Bennie during her recent tour of the shelter and gave him a thumbs up. Learn more about Bennie.

Learn more about the Animal Shelter's adoption process, including requirements and adoption fee structure. They have dogs, cats and small animals available to adopt, and do same-day adoptions.

Board of Supervisors Update
The following is a summary of yesterday's Board of Supervisors meeting and you can watch the meeting here. Please note that there are no board meetings scheduled for August and we will return in September with a very busy schedule.
 
Board Matter on Deck Safety – I have heard homeowners' concerns about the safety of older decks following press reports about deck collapses in our region and beyond. The county’s permitting process does an excellent job ensuring that new decks are built structurally sound, but once constructed deck maintenance and management are the responsibility of the homeowner. Through my Board Matter, the Board requested that Land Development Services develop guidance and information for homeowners with older decks on how to ensure they remain safe and structurally sound. I will share that information when it is available.
 
Plastic Bag Tax Ordinance –The Board authorized a public hearing on a proposed new law to impose a 5-cent tax on disposable plastic bags. The public hearing is scheduled for Tuesday, Sept. 14, at 4:30 p.m. at the Fairfax County Government Center. Residents must sign up in order to provide testimony in person or by phone that day or offer written or video testimony in advance. The purpose of the proposed tax is to make sure the environmental cost of plastic bags is reflected in the price consumers pay to use them – as an economist would say “to internalize the environmental externalities” caused by plastic bag litter in streams, rivers and oceans, harming fish and other wildlife.
 
Vaccination Requirement for County Employees – Through Chairman McKay’s Board Matter, the Board voted unanimously to direct the County Executive to thoroughly explore a COVID-19 vaccine requirement for all Fairfax County employees as more employees return to work in County facilities. Any such mandate would include exemptions used by other public and private sector employers including religious and medical reasons.
E-Scooters Arriving Soon
The first e-scooter operators are set to roll in Fairfax County. LINK and Bird were approved for 300 devices each as part of the county’s Shared Mobility Device program. The Board of Supervisors approved the ordinance governing devices such as e-scooters after the state passed a law allowing locally regulated devices in 2019. For more information, visit www.fairfaxcounty.gov/cableconsumer/csd/shared-mobility or call the Department of Cable and Consumer Services at 703-324-5966, TTY 711.

The county's Department of Cable and Consumer Services regulates e-scooter operators through a permitting process. Operators are required to maintain certain fleet sizes with an initial maximum fleet of 300 devices per operator permit that can be increased to 600 devices per operator based on usage.

Rules of the Road
  • Like bicycles, e-scooters can be used on a highway, sidewalk, shared-use path, roadway, or crosswalk.
  • E-scooters in Fairfax County cannot be operated above 10 mph.
  • Once riders reach their destination, they should leave the device parked in an area that does not impede normal car or foot traffic.

How to Report Issues
  • If you notice an e-scooter parked in an inappropriate place or left on private property, you can contact the device operator listed on the e-scooter and the operator must remove it. You can report any issues related to scooters and other shared devices by emailing consumer@fairfaxcounty.gov.

Photo courtesy of Bird - Enjoy the Ride
Land Use and Transportation
New Hub of the Reston Data Visualization Project
The Zoning Activity Hub of the Reston Data Visualization project is now available to access the latest information about zoning applications in the Reston Transit Station Areas (TSAs). The online, interactive Zoning Activity Hub features approved and proposed zoning applications within the Reston TSAs as of February 2014. A current development plan image as well as information such as the applicant name, application status, a project description and links to more information is provided for each application. The Reston Data Visualization project already includes the Transportation Hub launched in January and will feature an Urban Parks Hub that is expected to launch in the coming months. Learn more. For more information and questions email Department of Planning and Development’s Urban Centers Section.

No Reston Comprehensive Plan Study Task Force Meetings in August
There are no task force meetings scheduled for August. To learn more about the Reston Comprehensive Plan Study and the task force, visit the Reston Comprehensive Plan Study webpage. You can watch the archive of meetings on YouTube.

DMV Services at Fairfax County Government Center, Tomorrow, July 29
My office has heard from residents who have had challenges getting a DMV appointment, so here is some good news: DMV Connect will be at the Fairfax County Government Center (12000 Government Center Parkway in Fairfax) on Thursday, July 29, 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. Appointments are necessary, but they will consider taking walk-ins on a case-by-case basis. Schedule an appointment online here.

Wiehle Avenue Pedestrian Study Group Virtual Meeting, July 29, 7 p.m.
The Wiehle Avenue Study Group meeting is Thursday, July 29 at 7 p.m. The meeting will be hosted on the Webex platform. Use this link to attend and participate in the meeting. You will be prompted to register with your email address and ZIP code before logging into meeting. If you prefer to listen to the meeting on your phone, you may call 1-844-621-3956 and use access code: 173 881 8134. This is also the number to use if accessing TTY 711. (Please note that each meeting has a unique link and call-in information). 

Zoning Ordinance Lunch & Learn Sessions
Interested in learning more about the new Zoning Ordinance? Join DPD staff for a series of lunch and learn sessions and a community meeting on a variety of topics, including navigating the new Ordinance, accessory living units, and home-based businesses. More information: zMOD Outreach Page.
Public Safety Update
Summer Road Safety Campaign
The Reston District Station will be conducting a pedestrian, bicyclist and driver safety campaign over the next few weeks. Several intersections and crosswalks have been identified by community members and officers will be monitoring them.
As Reston becomes more urbanized, an increasing number of bicyclists and pedestrians are traversing our roadways, especially with the W&OD trail and Reston Association trails throughout the community. You should also be aware that the General Assembly passed several new traffic safety laws this year, learn more.
Mark Your Calendar!
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There are several events coming up in our community in the coming weeks into September. Mark your calendar and get more information:

Stay Informed and In Touch
Hunter Mill District Supervisor Walter Alcorn
703-478-0283, TTY 711