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Fire Dept. Urges Caution on Roads As Rain Continues

The Arlington County Fire Department is urging residents to “turn around, don’t drown” when encountering a flooded roadway.

A Flood Warning is in effect for Arlington County until 1:30 a.m. as rain continues to fall. More from the National Weather Service:

…A FLOOD WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT UNTIL 130 AM EST FOR THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA…MONTGOMERY…CENTRAL PRINCE GEORGES… NORTHEASTERN LOUDOUN…ARLINGTON…AND NORTHEASTERN FAIRFAX COUNTIES…THE CITY OF FALLS CHURCH AND THE CITY OF ALEXANDRIA… AT 735 PM EST, EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT AND TRANSPORTATION OFFICIALS REPORTED AREAS OF FLOODING ACROSS THE AREA. BRIGHTON DAM ROAD NEAR THE HOWARD COUNTY/MONTGOMERY COUNTY LINE WITHIN THE PATUXENT RIVER WATERSHED HAS WATER FLOWING ACROSS THE ROADWAY, NECESSITATING A WATER RESCUE. ADDITIONAL CLOSED ROADS ARE BEING REPORTED IN GLENN DALE IN PRINCE GEORGE’S COUNTY MD, AND NEAR PHILOMONT ALONG LIME KILN ROAD IN LOUDOUN COUNTY VA. MOTORISTS USING ROCK CREEK PARKWAY FROM SOUTHERN MONTGOMERY COUNTY INTO NORTHWEST DC SHOULD BE PREPARED FOR FLOODED ROADWAYS. AT 7:15 PM EST, THE GAUGE AT SHERRILL DRIVE ON ROCK CREEK IN NW DC IS WITHIN ONE-HALF FOOT OF FLOOD STAGE, AND IS CONTINUING TO RISE WITH MORE RAIN ON THE WAY OVER THE NEXT FEW HOURS. IT IS EXPECTED FOR ROCK CREEK TO REACH FLOOD STAGE BY 9:00 PM EST. RAIN WILL CONTINUE TO PERSIST THROUGH THE EVENING HOURS, ESPECIALLY IN MONTGOMERY COUNTY, WHERE WE ARE ALREADY SEEING FLOODING. PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS… TURN AROUND, DON’T DROWN WHEN ENCOUNTERING FLOODED ROADS. MOST FLOOD DEATHS OCCUR IN VEHICLES. BE ESPECIALLY CAUTIOUS AT NIGHT WHEN IT IS HARDER TO RECOGNIZE THE DANGERS OF FLOODING. IF LAW ENFORCEMENT HAS PUT UP BARRICADES ON FLOODED ROADWAYS, DO NOT GO AROUND THE BARRICADES, THINKING YOUR VEHICLE CAN GET THROUGH THE FLOOD WATERS. &&

Numerous flooded roadways and water rescues have been reported in nearby Fairfax County. Arlington County has seen fewer significant problems, but ponding has been reported on some local roads.

Today’s rain helped to make 2018 the wettest year on record for the D.C. area. More showers and drizzle are expected Sunday.

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Rethink Energy: Plug into the Energy Lending Library

This regularly-scheduled sponsored column is written by the Arlington Initiative to Rethink Energy team (AIRE). This county program helps you make smart energy decisions that save you money and leaves a lighter footprint on the environment.

National leaders are meeting in Poland to discuss climate change. We in Arlington are addressing carbon emissions and climate change through Arlington’s Community Energy Plan.

How can you take action to reduce your carbon footprint? The Energy Lending Library is just one of many ways the county is working to achieve the goals of the Community Energy Plan.

Every action makes a difference. Stop by the Arlington County Library to borrow free energy efficiency tools, along with the information needed to identify and act on energy efficiency opportunities.

Use Knowledge to Take Action

  • Thermal imaging cameras see what your eyes can’t. They help identify hot and cold spots in your home, indicating where insulation is missing and where air leaks occur.
  • Energy meters show exactly how much electricity appliances and electronics consume.  Understanding energy use in your home is the first step to taking action toward a “greener” home.
  • The curated booklist offers energy saving tips and will help your complete “do-it-yourself” projects to save energy and money to make your home more comfortable. The list also includes some Spanish titles.

The Energy Lending Library and other AIRE programs offer you energy-saving resources to help rethink energy use and achieve the goals outlined in Arlington’s Community Energy Plan, which calls for a 75 percent reduction in energy consumption countywide by 2050.

Join us to create a climate of change here in Arlington. Start by reserving your thermal camera, energy meter and energy books here or stop by your local library.

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Podcast: GMU Researcher Michael Farren on Amazon and Economic Incentives

Amazon’s arrival in Arlington has been hailed as a massive boon for the county and the Commonwealth of Virginia.

But are the incentives offered to the company worth the economic development benefits it promises to bring? We discussed Amazon and the HQ2 process with Michael Farren, a researcher at GMU’s Mercatus Center who studies the effects of government favoritism toward particular businesses.

Listen below or subscribe to the podcast on iTunesGoogle PlayStitcher or TuneIn.

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OPM Disability Retirement: Meeting the Legal Criteria

Filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits when a Federal or Postal employee becomes injured or incurs a chronic medical condition is a process that involves meeting a legal standard that seems simple enough.

The “legal criteria” to meet is essentially a two-step standard: (1) Proving that one has a medical condition and (2) showing that the medical condition prevents the Federal or Postal employee from performing one or more of the essential elements of one’s Federal or Postal job. However, as with all things which appear simple, if only life reflected such simplicity.

While the initial reading of the statutes and regulations governing Federal Medical Retirement appear to the fairly straightforward, the inherent complexities belie the appearance of simplicity. For example, What constitutes an “essential element” of one’s job? Does failing to maintain a regular work schedule — i.e., taking excessive leave for doctor’s appointments, for example — qualify one for Federal Disability Retirement benefits? What if a Federal or Postal employee is terminated because he or she has taken too much time off to attend to one’s medical conditions? When should you inform your employer about your intent to file for Federal Disability Retirement benefits? If you are offered an “accommodation” for your medical disability, does that necessarily preclude you from filing for Federal disability Retirement benefits?

The adage of life often becomes the truism of living: Simplicity is never so simple, and Federal Disability Retirement is no exception.

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

ARLnow Weekend Discussion

Rain is rolling into our neck of the woods tonight, and doesn’t seem set to leave any time soon.

The forecast is calling for a soggy weekend with no relief in sight until Sunday night — but at least temperatures will inch up just a hair.

Anyone looking to persevere and celebrate the holiday season, despite the rain, can take advantage of the Washington Regional Alcohol Program teaming up with Lyft to offer free rides again.

Starting today (Friday), rides up to $15 are free with the use of a promo code from 8 p.m. to 4 a.m. The offer will continue until Jan. 1. Weekly codes will be posted at the Sober Rides website at noon on today, then Dec. 22 and Dec. 31. The weekly code is only valid for one ride.

Our event calendar can help with brainstorming for ways to take advantage of that offer. Or you can stay inside and catch up on our most popular articles of the past week:

  1. School Board Signs Off On New South Arlington School Boundaries, Ending Messy Debate Over Maps
  2. Crystal City Building Evacuated Amid Widespread Bomb Threats
  3. Police Drag Man Out of Home After Alleged Drunken Conduct Around Child
  4. Chick-fil-A in Ballston Quarter Starts Serving Up Sandwiches Today
  5. Dump Truck Injures Woman Pushing Stroller in Rosslyn

Head down to the comments to discuss your weekend plans, or anything else local. Have a great weekend, and stay dry!

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Saint Ann Catholic School Open House

Saint Ann Catholic School is holding an Open House on Sunday January 27th, 10:00am – 1:00pm and Tuesday January 29, 9:30am – 11:30am. This is your invitation to come and tour our school! Discover our wonderful Preschool program and have have your questions answered about our Primary, Intermediate and Middle school curriculum. Meet our teachers and students! No reservations are required and we look forward to seeing you! La escuela Santa Ana ofrece visitas guiadas en espanol.

Listing of the Day: 4525 35th Street N.

Address: 4525 35th Street N.
Neighborhood: Country Club Hills
Listed: $1,499,900
Open: Sunday, December 16 from 2-4 p.m.

Renovated, expanded home in sought out neighborhood of Country Club Hills. Home had a massive renovation in 2002 to include addition with master suite overlooking private 16,000 sq. ft. lot.

Features: Eat in kitchen with wood burning fireplace, granite countertops and lots of natural light. Formal living and dining room blend seamlessly with great room with vaulted ceilings. Basement features large rec. room with fireplace, mud-room, attached 2 car garage and ample storage space. Plat available.

Listed by:
Billy Buck
Billy Buck & Company
(703) 524-9000
[email protected]
https://www.billybuck.com/

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Holiday Market to Pop Up in Ballston Apartment Building Tomorrow

Local retailers will set up shop for a holiday market pop-up tomorrow (Saturday) in The View at Liberty Center at 4000 Wilson Blvd.

Gifts from the clothing boutique Mission Edit, Wine Time Crafts, stationary shop Creations by Sasha and other local businesses will be available for purchase from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Shoppers can also munch on holiday cookies with a cup of hot chocolate.

The first 300 people outside The View on the corner of N. Quincy Street and Wilson Blvd will get to take home a wreath from Merrifield Garden Center, which is located in Falls Church.

The View is encouraging visitors to bring new, unwrapped toys to support local Toys for Tots efforts by the U.S. Marine Corps. The apartment building also plans to raffle off holiday pies from D.C.-based bakery Whisked! to benefit Toys for Tots.

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Glebewood Man Pleads Guilty to Using Dark Web to Download Child Pornography

An Arlington man now faces up to two decades behind bars, after admitting to downloading child pornography from the dark web.

Federal prosecutors say 39-year-old Jon T. Wilkins, a former commercial bank executive, pleaded guilty today (Friday) to one count of “receiving child pornography.” A judge could now sentence him to anywhere between five and 20 years in prison.

Prosecutors allege that FBI agents discovered that Wilkins was active on “Playpen,” a dark web forum specializing in child pornography, back in 2015.

They then tracked Wilkins’ IP address to his home in a Glebewood neighborhood, and secured search warrants for his property. Investigators then found dozens of images and videos depicting the sexual abuse of preteen girls on computers belonging to Wilkins.

Prosecutors added in a news release that Wilkins “attempted to conceal his illegal behavior by utilizing Tor, a special web browser that permits access to the dark web while hiding browsing activity.” But agents still uncovered some of his browser history, according to an affidavit filed in federal court.

Wilkins is set for a sentencing hearing on April 5.

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Police Charge Dump Truck Driver Who Allegedly Struck Woman Pushing Stroller in Rosslyn Crosswalk

The driver of a dump truck who allegedly struck a woman pushing a stroller in a Rosslyn intersection yesterday (Thursday) is now facing criminal charges.

Arlington Police announced today (Friday) that they’re charging 63-year-old John Washington of Silver Spring, Maryland with reckless driving and failure to yield to a pedestrian in a crosswalk in connection with the crash.

The incident happened around the intersection of Lee Highway and Ft. Myer Drive around 9:30 a.m. Thursday. Police believe the woman was crossing the street with a child in a stroller when the truck driver struck her.

She was taken to the hospital with “serious but non-life threatening injuries,” though police say she was able to maneuver the stroller out of the way before the crash, and the child was not hurt.

Washington will face his first hearing on those charges on Monday (Dec. 17), according to county police spokeswoman Ashley Savage.

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Baja Fresh in Clarendon Appears to Have Closed

The Baja Fresh Mexican Grill in Clarendon now seems to be closed.

The restaurant hasn’t been open during normal business hours since at least Wednesday (Dec. 12), and a variety of boxes and furniture are now strewn about the eatery, located at 2815 Clarendon Blvd.

No one answered the phone at the restaurant yesterday or today (Friday), making it unclear if the closure is temporary or permanent.

Baja Fresh’s future has frequently been in doubt over the last few years, as the owner of its building as eyed a major redevelopment of the whole block.

The County Board signed off on plans earlier this year to transform the area, calling for the renovation and expansion of several buildings along the 2800 blocks of Wilson and Clarendon Blvds, and the creation of a “ground level arcade” along the nearby N. Edgewood Street. The property owner, Regency Centers, has also overseen the “Market Common” redevelopment across Clarendon Blvd.

Should the restaurant indeed be shutting down, Arlington would be left without a Baja Fresh location. One in Rosslyn shut down back in 2013.

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