Falls Church News Briefs

Senior Affordable Housing Project Advances

By a 6-1 vote Monday, the Falls Church City Council gave preliminary approval to providing a $2 million loan and special exceptions permitting the development of a six-story, 66 units senior housing structure, The Wilden, under the auspices of the Falls Church Housing Authority.

The Council is slated to take final action on the item on Mar. 22. The pastors of two Falls Church congregations, the Dulin United Methodist Church and the Christ Crossman Church, were among proponents who spoke in favor of the project tonight, along with State Sen. Mary Margaret Whipple, whose comments came via e-mail. Councilman David Snyder, who apologized earlier in the evening for being unable to attend some City events last weekend because he was with his ailing mother in hospice in Pennsylvania, commented in support of the project that “the leverage here is undeniable, it is six times the City’s investment. This cannot be lost. There is incredible participation by non-City taxpayers, and I am pleased with the development of a commercial office space (that will built in conjunction with it–ed.), and with the plans to pay back the City’s loan.” Councilman Dan Maller said, “It’s not about the numbers, even though this project will bring net money into the City in its first years. We’re doing it because it’s the right thing to do.” Councilman Dan Sze said, “A society that can’t take care of its old and young loses its reason for being.” Only Councilman Nader Baroukh voted against the plan.


F.C. Adopts New Anti-Predatory Towing Law

Rick Goff (L) & Becky Witsman of the City of Falls Church Economic Development Office.

The Falls Church City Council gave a unanimous final approval to a new anti-predatory towing ordinance at its business meeting Monday. The ordinance requires photographic or other evidence of a violation, the posting of clear and uniform signage about the threat of towing in parking lots, and towing and storage fees limited to $100 and $40, respectively. Falls Church Deputy Police Chief Mary Gavin noted that the practice of predatory towing had “skyrocketed” in the City, requiring measures to constrain it, which were limited by what state law permits. Predatory towing involves a towing company swiftly removing a vehicle within moments after an alleged violation. Gavin said that some voluntary agreements have also been secured whereby vehicles are not towed for about 30 minutes after a violation, but that the agreements remain only voluntary.


F.C. OK’s Solid Waste Outsourcing Contract

The Falls Church City Council voted at its Monday meeting to authorize an expenditure not to exceed $500,000 for solid waste collection services by American Disposal Services that would begin by July 1 in the City. The Council argued extensively over whether and how to implement the distribution of new 65-gallon trash and recycling bins to all residences in the City. The effort was endorsed by the City Environmental Services staff and its citizen Environmental Services Council. The vote was unanimous, 7-0.


Fairfax Issues Rules for Snow Clean Up

Fairfax County residents have begun the process of cleaning up the large amounts of debris left in the wake of record-breaking snow accumulation, and according to county officials, debris on residential property is the responsibility of the property owner. All trash and recycling collection companies that provide service to Fairfax County residents are required to collect up to ten bundles, bags or containers of brush placed at their customers’ curb sides as long as the brush is less than four feet in length, weighs less than 50 pounds and no piece is larger than six inches in diameter. All residents are encouraged to contact their trash collection service provider to arrange pickup of larger quantities of debris and material thicker than six inches. County residents living in established sanitary districts pay a service fee in addition to their annual tax assessment for the trash and recycling collection service provided by the Fairfax County Division of Solid Waste Collection and Recycling. These county collection customers receive five special collections annually at no additional charge as part of their standard service. County collection customers may contact the Customer Service Center at 703-802-3322, TTY 711 to schedule a special collection for debris.


F.C. Resident Hits Charles Town Jackpot

William Wilhoyte of Falls Church hit a jackpot for a whopping $2,593,926 on March 7 at the Charles Town Races and Slots in West Virginia. Wilhoyte hit the Ca$hola jackpot while playing the 25c Royal Spins Deluxe slot machine, making him an instant millionaire. He told officials at the site that he plans to retire, pay off his mortgage and share his winnings with his family. He is only the ninth winner to hit that particular jackpot since it began in 2006.