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by ARLnow.com September 5, 2017 at 5:45 pm 0

The Arlington County Board has joined other local elected officials in criticizing President Donald Trump’s decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program for undocumented immigrants.

In a statement released Tuesday afternoon (below), the County Board called the decision an “act of cruelty” that will “will tear apart families, cause substantial economic damage to our nation and further divide Americans.”

We are gravely disappointed with President Trump’s decision to end DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals), the program that has given hope to some 800,000 Dreamers by protecting them from deportation and allowing them to more fully integrate into our country — their country.

The young people protected under DACA have gone to school, saluted our flag and served in our armed services. Many never knew they were not citizens until they looked for a job or applied to college. They have made many contributions to our nation. Arlington’s own DACA recipients have been an integral part of this County through their academic achievements in Arlington Public Schools and their leadership in the community.

Since 2012, DACA has allowed certain undocumented immigrants who entered the United States before the age of 16 to receive a renewable two-year period of deferred action from deportation and made them eligible to work. In short, it gave nearly one million young people hope.

The president’s act of cruelty will tear apart families, cause substantial economic damage to our nation and further divide Americans. Congress must now act before the March deadline to protect the Dreamers. Congress should immediately consider the American Hope Act, cosponsored by Rep. Don Beyer, who has shown real leadership on the immigration issue.

While Congress has tried and failed in the past to enact comprehensive immigration reform, permanently addressing the fate of America’s Dreamers cannot wait. Now is their opportunity to act, and they should do so immediately.

Arlington again reaffirms its commitment as a welcoming community that recognizes, respects and supports the contributions of all its members. Today, Arlington stands especially with these young people, our Dreamers and DACA recipients.

by Chris Teale September 5, 2017 at 4:45 pm 0

Students at Arlington County’s public high schools now have the chance to build their own lunch with fresh ingredients.

Wakefield, Washington-Lee and Yorktown all added food service company Cuisine Solutions‘ Café + Teria concept, the first of its kind for a school system in Virginia.

Each school’s serving area will have a similar, modern look, according to a press release. Cuisine Solutions describes itself as “the authority on sous-vide,” a slow-cooking method where food is vacuum-sealed and then slow-cooked in hot water to preserve flavors and nutrients.

Each day, students can select ingredients in four steps by picking a base of grain, salad or a wrap; a protein of antibiotic-free chicken, ground beef, or Paneer cheese; a topping of vegetables, cheese and sauces; and a dressing.

“This program introduces the healthy, fast-casual dining experience that teenagers love,” Bill Stablein, Cuisine Solutions’ manager of K-12 programs, said in a statement. “Arlington is an innovative district and a good choice to begin the program based on size, number of schools, diversity and exposure to quick-service restaurants.”

Cuisine Solutions hosted a forum last February for 10 public school districts in Virginia to discuss ways to improve dining options for students. After the forum, company chefs put together menus for Café + Teria based on local ingredients that are healthy and of good quality.

Cuisine Solutions will provide the three schools with the recipes, standard operating procedures, name brand and marketing materials for the new program, which may eventually be replicated nationwide.

Courtesy photos

by Chris Teale September 5, 2017 at 3:45 pm 0

President Donald Trump’s decision to end a program that protected younger undocumented immigrants from deportation was sharply criticized by various Arlington leaders today.

Trump announced his administration would end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program in six months to give Congress time to act and find an alternative plan through legislation.

The program protects some children who were brought to the United States illegally by their parents from immediate deportation, and instead allows them a renewable two-year deferral and eligibility for a work permit. It is estimated that 800,000 people who arrived in the U.S. before the age of 16., also known as “Dreamers,” have been shielded from deportation by DACA.

Rep. Don Beyer (D), who represents Arlington in the U.S. House of Representatives as well as the cities of Alexandria and Falls Church and a portion of Fairfax County, criticized the decision as an “act of malice.”

“President Trump’s decision to end DACA and begin deporting our Dreamers betrays nearly one million young people who grew up with this country as their own and made so many contributions to it,” Beyer said in a statement. “This act of malice will tear apart hundreds of thousands of American families and inflict serious economic damage on the country. Congress has no choice but to act immediately, and it should begin consideration of the American Hope Act to protect Dreamers.”

Bishop Michael Burbidge, the leader of the Catholic Diocese of Arlington since December, said in a statement he is “disheartened” by the decision to end DACA:

I join my voice with those who are disheartened by the news that President Trump will rescind DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals). Standing with my brother Bishops, I urge Congress and the President to enact legislation that will safeguard those currently protected by this important program.

While the issue of immigration is complicated — and our government has many considerations to balance in responding to the influx of those who seek safety, and personal and economic security in our country — offering special protection to those who only know the United States as home is a reasonable measure of compassion.

This news is undoubtedly troubling for the hundreds of thousands approved through DACA. I ask all Catholics and people of good will in the Diocese of Arlington to keep these individuals, as well as our government officials, in prayer. May we as a country be considerate of our neighbors and defend those whom we have offered protection and safe harbor.

U.S. Sens. Tim Kaine and Mark Warner (D-Va.) said Trump’s decision could have enormous economic repercussions too, and urged Congress to act quickly.

In a statement, Warner said:

The DACA program was a promise to protect certain children of undocumented immigrants, who came to this country through no fault of their own, so they could safely come out of the shadows, attain legal status and realize their full potential. Over the years, the DREAMers have shown us their true character–working hard to become this nation’s next generation of students, entrepreneurs, and military men and women.  And while Congress has a responsibility to enact comprehensive immigration reform that provides them with a fair path to citizenship, which the Senate passed in 2013, we cannot let the Trump Administration’s disgraceful anti-immigrant policies leave nearly 800,000 DREAMers in limbo. Going back on our word threatens their safety, harms our economy and speaks volumes about who we are as a country.

(more…)

by ARLnow.com Sponsor September 5, 2017 at 2:45 pm 0

The following bi-weekly column is written and sponsored by Bark + Boarding, which provides a heart-centered and safe environment for your pets. Conveniently located at 5818-C Seminary Road in Bailey’s Crossroads, Bark & Boarding offers doggy daycare, boarding, grooming, walking and training services, plus in-home pet care.

By Rae Patterson, Writer and Animal Enthusiast

Do you ever wonder what your dog is thinking? Why does she chase her tail? Why on earth would he want to sniff another dog’s behind? Our dogs make us laugh, smile and sometimes scratch our heads. Here are some fun facts about man’s best friend.

Why does my dog…

Bury Bones

Maybe you’ve caught your dog digging in the backyard, burying favorite toys, or hiding treats in the couch. We know that our dogs came from wild ancestors like wolves and foxes. These animals might hunt large prey that they can’t eat all at once or have remaining bones to chew from their last meal.

Wild dogs bury those items to hide them from other dogs and scavengers, while they are busy with other activities. Burying valuable items is a survival instinct that our dogs maintain from their ancestry. When your dog hides a beloved toy, it doesn’t mean she’s finished with it. She’s just saving it for later!

Howl

Occasional howling, whether at you or along with a siren, is another ancestral instinct. Wolves howl as a form of communication, especially to find one another if members of their pack become separated or to warn another dog to stay away.

Your dog may howl briefly when he loses sight of you in an unfamiliar place, to be sure you can find him again. Your dog’s howl might be alerting you to distress (be sure to check for injury or threat!), or to show you an exciting discovery. Howling at a passing truck or dog is probably your dog’s way of telling the intruder it’s in his territory.

Dogs also howl as a bonding experience, joining in on the fun when other dogs are howling.  In fact, at any given time of day, you may hear our resident bandleader Barry leading the Bark+Board pups in a lovely howling chorus!

Chase Her Tail

A puppy running around in a circle in pursuit of its own tail can be very entertaining. Your puppy thinks so too. She probably doesn’t know yet that her tail is a part of her body, and she sees it as a toy or prey. Adult dogs may chase their tails because they’re bored or seeking your attention.

If you have a dog that spins often, try throwing a tennis ball or taking your dog on a walk during times of high energy. If your adult dog suddenly starts biting at his tail, he may be experiencing pain in that area, such as fleas or parasites. This unusual behavior calls for a vet visit.

Lick Me

Your dog’s “kisses” really are a sign of affection. Mother dogs stimulate and comfort their newborn puppies by licking them. As the puppies grow, they lick their moms in return. It is bonding and comforting.

Your dog may lick you a few extra times to taste your salty skin. Among groups of dogs, the members of the pack often lick the leaders as a sign of submission. Your dog may also try to lick you when she’s in trouble.

Sniff Other Dogs’ Behinds

Dogs’ noses are estimated to have 215 million more scent receptors in their noses than humans do. Dogs sniff each other’s’ anal glands as more than just a greeting. It’s a full introduction. They learn the sex of the dog, what the dog is eating, and even some clues about a dog’s emotional state or readiness for mating.

Sniffing one another’s behinds can also disarm potential aggression between two dogs meeting for the first time.  At Bark + Boarding we make sure to give each dog the opportunity to meet other dogs in a non-aggressive manner so they’re all friends in the end!

Now you know a little more about your furry companion and his odd and amazing natural habits.

Mention this article for a FREE evaluation and click here to sign up for one today!

If you have a question about your pet’s behavior, feel free to email [email protected]. If you and your pet are featured in an article, you will receive $10 off any of our services!  For more information check out www.BarkandBoarding.com.

by Chris Teale September 5, 2017 at 1:45 pm 0

Arlington County’s public libraries are celebrating “Cosplay Month” for the first time with a series of events at the Westover Branch Library, starting tonight (Monday).

Cosplay is a hobby where participants dress up to represent characters from books, comics, television shows or movies, and now Arlingtonians can learn more with four free events.

“It’s about empowering our patrons through a hybrid of art, fashion, role play, books and sub (geek) culture,” a library spokesman said. “We provide our patrons with the opportunity to transform themselves into their favorite characters from their favorite shows.”

Tonight, from 7-8:30 p.m. at the Westover Branch Library (1644 N. McKinley Road), photographer Ashley Loth and cosplay model Jillian Ryan will teach cosplayers how to pose their models, set a storyline and bring their cosplay to life in photographs. The event is aimed at adults and mature high schoolers.

On Tuesday, September 12 at the Westover Branch Library, Star Wars fans can meet the 501st Legion from 7-8:30 p.m. The legion has “spread the magic of the Star Wars genre worldwide” by wearing authentic costumes and hosting charity events, according to an event listing.

September’s Casual Monthly Drawing Meet-Up on Tuesday, September 19 will be themed around cosplay from 6:30-8:30 p.m., while on Saturday, September 30, the Westover Branch Library will host a panel discussion on what it’s like to cosplay when you are a “minority nerd.” The discussion lasts from 1-2:30 p.m., with panelists expected to share their diverse perspectives.

The month of events comes hot on the heels of International Cosplay Day, which took place on the weekend of August 26 and 27 and saw themed events held across the world.

Photo via Twitter

by ARLnow.com Sponsor September 5, 2017 at 12:45 pm 0

This regularly-scheduled sponsored Q&A column is written by Eli Tucker, Arlington-based Realtor and Rosslyn resident. Please submit your questions to him via email for response in future columns. Enjoy!

Question: I live in a building with above average condo fees and am wondering what impact the condo fees will have when I decide to sell?

Answer:

On Average

The average condo fee for a one bedroom apartment in Arlington is $397/month and $530/month for a two bedroom unit. On average, owners pay 50 cents per square foot they own. Looking at my favorite sales indicators, days on market and sold price to original ask ratio, there is a direct correlation between higher condo fees and the number of days on market, as well as between higher condo fees and greater buyer discounts from the original asking price (see first and second data tables below).

Pricing Around Fees

When pricing your condo, you must factor in the monthly fees compared to condos in similar communities.  Since buyers manage their total monthly payment, along with the total sale price, consider that on a 30 year mortgage with a 4 percent interest rate, increasing the mortgage by $21,000 increasing the monthly payment by $100. Thus, as a simple rule of thumb, for every $100/month difference in condo fees on a comparable unit, there should be an adjustment of about $20,000 in market value.

Data Summaries

There’s a lot of important information hidden behind data on condo fees like building services/amenities and the inclusion or exclusion of utilities and/or cable and internet, but the data on condo fees in Arlington is valuable nonetheless.

The following data summary represents apartment-style condo sales in Arlington over the last four years, broken down by condo fee ranges. Of note is that as the fee and fee per square foot increases, so does the time it takes to sell and percentage discount buyers negotiate of the asking price.

Note that of the $1,000+ fee sales, one third are from Turnberry Tower, Arlington’s premier luxury building, and another 15 percent are from Crystal Gateway, a building with expansive floor plans and the largest amenity package of any community in Arlington.

The following table is a cross section of the above data set, limited to sales that closed from $250,000 to $500,000, thus presenting the data within a more comparable sub-market.

How much does a building’s age impact the condo fees?

Most people would say that older buildings have higher condo fees because they have higher maintenance and replacement costs. Let’s take a look at the data for one and two bedrooms sales, by the decade it the community was built.

Of note is that the buildings from the 1950s and earlier have the most limited (or non-existent) amenities and there seems to be a jump in fees per square foot in buildings as they reach the 20 year mark, but leveling off after that, in-line with my expectations because most major systems require expensive repairs or replacement around the 20-30 year mark.

In order to truly understand the impact of condo fees on your condo, it’s necessary to drill down a few more levels within your specific sub-market(s). If you’re interested in exploring condo fee data for your unit, feel free to email me at [email protected] and I’d be happy to provide you with a more customized data summary.

If you’d like a question answered in my weekly column, please send an email to [email protected]. To read any of my older posts, visit the blog section of my website at www.EliResidential.com. Call me directly at (703) 539-2529.

Eli Tucker is a licensed Realtor in Virginia, Washington DC, and Maryland with Real Living At Home, 2420 Wilson Blvd #101 Arlington, VA 22201, (202) 518-8781.

by Chris Teale September 5, 2017 at 11:45 am 0

Arlington Agenda is a listing of interesting events for the week ahead in Arlington County. If you’d like to see your event featured, fill out the event submission form.

Also, be sure to check out our event calendar.

Monday

Candidate Forums
Virginia Hospital Center (1701 N. George Mason Drive)
Time: 7-9 p.m.

The Arlington County Civic Federation hosts the official kick-off of the fall campaign season, with debates between the candidates for Arlington County Board, School Board and the 49th District of the Virginia House of Delegates.

Tuesday

Wine Tasting *
Osteria Da Nino (2900 S. Quincy Street)
Time: 5-7 p.m.

A complimentary wine tasting hosted by Robert W. Kennedy, wine director of R.W.K Imports. Five wines will be paired with food selections for $5 each, while oysters will be available at the restaurant both fried and raw for $1 each.

Wind Down Wednesday
Market Common Clarendon (2800 Clarendon Blvd)
Time: 5-8 p.m.

Enjoy shopping specials, free wine tasting and live music during Wind Down Wednesdays in Clarendon. Check in at the gazebo to receive your silver pass for discounts. Attendees must be 21 or older to receive a silver pass.

Thursday

Jon Lovitz Live
Arlington Cinema & Drafthouse (2903 Columbia Pike)
Time: 7:45 p.m.

Versatile comedic actor Jon Lovitz performs his stand-up show at the Arlington Cinema & Drafthouse, having previously starred on television and in movies. Lovitz also performs Friday at 7:30 p.m. and Saturday at 7:30 and 10 p.m.

Saturday

Art With a Heart Fundraiser *
Market Common Clarendon (2800 Clarendon Blvd)
Time: 1-6 p.m.

Raise money for children in foster care in the county. Watch children bring art to life and hone their painting techniques, purchase a unique piece of art or bid on an item from a silent auction, or have your face painted or a caricature drawn.

Sahaja Yoga *
Arlington Central Library (1015 N. Quincy Street)
Time: 2:30-4 p.m.

Learn how to meditate and about its benefits at this free workshop with experts who will guide you through. Find out more about this ancient solution to modern problems, how to manage and reduce stress and take care of your wellness.

Truck & Toss *
Grace Christian Academy (3233 Annandale Road)
Time: 5-9 p.m.

Northern Virginia’s premier food truck, cornhole and craft beer tasting festival. Enjoy unlimited tastings and sample dishes, and join the Cornhole for a Cause tournament. The Old Dominion Corvette Club will also be on hand to show their classic cars.

9/11 Memorial 5K Race *
DoubleTree by Hilton (300 Army Navy Drive)
Time: 6-8:30 p.m.

The annual 9/11 memorial race, organized by the Arlington Police, Fire and Sheriff Departments. The race begins and ends at the DoubleTree, with runners following a route along Army Navy Drive, S. Joyce Street, Washington Blvd and around the Pentagon.

Sunday

Sip & Salsa
220 Twentieth Street (220 20th Street S.)
Time: 2-6 p.m.

Crystal City’s signature food and wine tasting event. The festival brings wines from Spain, Portugal and Argentina and pairs them with food from neighborhood restaurants. Columbia Pike’s Salsa Room will provide salsa dancing.

*Denotes featured (sponsored) event

by ARLnow.com September 5, 2017 at 10:50 am 0

A froyo shop is becoming a Verizon store.

The former Pinkberry along the 2900 block of Clarendon Blvd is becoming a Verizon store. Interior construction is currently underway and the store is expected to open on Monday, Oct. 23, according to the Verizon website.

Verizon stores offer wireless plans, smartphones, cases and other products and services. The only other Verizon-operated store in Arlington is in the Fashion Centre at Pentagon City mall.

It was previously rumored that Verizon was looking at a portion of the former American Tap Room space in Clarendon for a retail store.

by ARLnow.com September 5, 2017 at 9:50 am 0

A vehicle overturned on the road from Shirlington to Fairlington Monday night.

The crash occurred around 11:30 p.m. on the 4200 block of 31st Street S.

It’s unclear how the crash happened. At least one parked car had visible damage near the flipped car.

It was initially reported that one person was trapped in the car, but that person was able to “self-extricate,” according to scanner traffic. No serious injuries were reported.

The road was closed following the wreck, while police waited for a tow crew to arrive.

by ARLnow.com September 5, 2017 at 8:35 am 0

Today Is ‘Terrible Traffic Tuesday’ — Today is the Tuesday after Labor Day, when students in Arlington and around the region go back to school. As a result of the extra school buses, parents and students on the roads, and the end of summer vacations, it is also dubbed “Terrible Traffic Tuesday” by AAA Mid-Atlantic. In reality, however, the day after — which now has a name: “Woeful Wednesday” — is worse in terms of commuting times, and next week should be even more woeful. [Washington Post, WTOP]

Chili’s Dying Out in D.C. Area — The Chili’s in Bailey’s Crossroads has closed. The restaurant chain closed its Crystal City location last year and its Reston location the year before that. The nearest Chili’s to Arlington is now along Route 1, outside the Beltway, in Fairfax County. [Twitter]

Roosevelt Profiled by Conservative Media — GOP candidate Adam Roosevelt is getting some attention from conservative media outlets. Roosevelt “is a moderate Republican running for the Virginia House of Delegates against current Democratic Delegate Alfonso Lopez, who has never before faced a GOP opponent during his six years in office,” writes the Daily Caller, calling the district he’s running in, which includes part of Arlington, “far left.” The lead sentence in Newsmax’s article about Roosevelt has a different focus: “A conservative Republican candidate for the Virginia House of Delegates, who happens to be black, has recently emerged as one of the most spirited advocates of keeping Confederate statues up in the Old Dominion State.” [Daily Caller, Newsmax]

Webb Removed from Civ Fed Debate — School Board candidate Mike Webb has had his invitation to tonight’s Arlington County Civic Federation debate — the unofficial kickoff to campaign season in Arlington — rescinded because he reportedly “failed to return required paperwork in time to allow participation.” Allison Dough, the other candidate to challenge Democratic endorsee Monique O’Grady, has said she has other commitments and will be unable to attend the debate. [InsideNova]

Arlington Man Evicted From ‘Big Brother’ House — Arlington resident Matt Clines, 33, has been evicted from the Big Brother house. Clines had advanced about half-way through the CBS reality show before being voted off. [Reality TV World, Parade, Hollywood Reporter]

DeVos to Make Big Announcement in Arlington — Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos is reportedly planning to make a “major announcement on Title IX, the campus gender equality law,” from George Mason’s Antonin Scalia Law School in Arlington on Thursday. [BuzzFeed]

Flickr pool photo by Jim Webster

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