News Briefs

July 19 – 25, 2007

Continuing Episcopalians Host Newly-Ordained Bishop

Continuing Episcopalians, banned by Nigerian-affiliated Anglican defectors from worshipping at the historic Falls Church but holding weekly services across the street in a fellowship hall at the Falls Church Presbyterian, will host newly-ordained Episcopal Bishop, Shannon Johnston, this Sunday at a 10 a.m. choral service, followed by a luncheon. Meanwhile, a legal brief was filed this week by lawyers on behalf of the Diocese of Virginia and the national Episcopal denomination regarding the Episcopalians’ rights to the property currently being occupied by the defecting members. A preliminary court ruling is expected this summer, prior to a final ruling expected in November. Meanwhile, both the Nigerian-affiliates and the continuing Episcopalians have reserved different times at the church’s historic Shrine Mont retreat in early October.


Virginia Record on Awarding Contracts to Minorities Hit

A Falls Church government contracts attorney told the monthly luncheon of the Greater Falls Church Chamber of Commerce Tuesday that Virginia’s record of awarding contracts to small and minority-owned firms is “the worst in the U.S.” Janine S. Benton, co-partner in the woman-owned law firm of Benton and Potter, said that while the state has begun an effort to recover from its past record, it has a pattern until very recently of offering “less and one-half of one percent” of its contracts to minority-owned businesses, compared, for example, to Alabama, where the percentage is far higher. She also assailed the federal Department of Homeland Security Immigration and Customs Enforcement Division’s inability to pay its contractors within the legally-required 30 days.


Police Investigate Robbery at Comfort Inn

The manager at the Comfort Inn at 6111 Arlington Boulevard was robbed in the motel’s parking lot Monday in the early afternoon. He walked out of the building carrying a bank bag containing an undisclosed amount of cash. Three men approached him, implied a weapon and demanded money. The victim handed over the bank bag and the suspects fled on foot. The suspects were all described as white, between 19 and 21 years old, all three between 5 ft. 9 in. and 5 ft. 10 in. tall, weighing 160 to 180 pounds. Two of them wore dark t-shirts and blue jeans, no clothing description was provided for the third. Anyone with information should call Crime Solvers at 1-866-411-8477 or Fairfax County Police at 703-691-2131.


4 Assaulted at Graham Road Vacation Bible School

A 54-year-old Falls Church area man has been charged with four counts of assault and battery after unlawfully entering through an open back door of the Graham Road Methodist Church at 2929 Graham Road and assaulted four people inside during the noon hour Tuesday. There were no weapons or life-threatening injuries. The man pushed a woman to the ground, punching her repeatedly and then ran to the basement where he assaulted a bible school teacher, eventually being subdued by two men at the church.


Virginia Sales Tax Holiday Set Aug. 3-5

School supplies priced at $20 or less per item, and clothing, including footwear, costing $100 or less will be exempt from Virginia’s 5% sales tax during a three-day “holiday” the first weekend in August, Friday the 3rd through Sunday the 5th. A four-day tax holiday for energy-efficient appliances it set for mid-October.