Mason District Home
Penelope A. "Penny" Gross
Mason District Supervisor
Mason District Governmental Center
6507 Columbia Pike, Annandale, VA 22003
Phone: 703-256-7717, TTY 711
Welcome to the Mason District homepage! It is designed for easy use, and I hope you will find the information both helpful and timely. Special features include Mason Matters!, my twice-a-year newsletter, information about reserving the public meeting rooms at the Mason District Governmental Center, and other meetings and activities throughout Mason District. Links to county agencies also are included. Please refer to the Web site often, and don't hesitate to contact me.
Penelope A. "Penny" Gross
Mason District Supervisor
The Board Corner: Perspectives from Penny - The World Police and Fire Games, also known as Fairfax 2015, are underway throughout the county and the region. Nearly 10,000 athletes, who are public safety professionals – police, firefighters, sheriff's deputies, corrections officers, border patrol – have gathered to compete for medals, and bragging rights, in more than 60 sports. The opening ceremony at RFK Stadium was thrilling, as thousands of competitors marched around the track, preceded by Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Brownies, and even a Daisy Scout bearing a sign of the country. British bobbies wore their signature helmets, the Canadian team tossed dozens of flying discs announcing the 2017 games in Montreal, and the Norwegian team sported Viking horns! As the sun was setting, Fairfax County Battalion Fire Chief Jerome Williams carried the torch for the final lap before igniting a cauldron that rose into the upper decks of the stadium, and concluded the ceremony. Admission to the sporting events is free; a complete schedule of activities and venues is available at http://fairfax2015.com.
The Board of Supervisors approved, unanimously, my motion to create a Community Parking District (CPD) for all of Mason District. The CPD prohibits parking of watercraft, trailers, recreational vehicles, motor homes, camping trailers, and any other trailer or semi-trailer, on public streets in residential areas. During July, parking enforcement officers will place information flyers on vehicles that will be affected by the new ordinance. Enforcement of the CPD begins August 1. This newsletter contains additional information about the CPD.
Planning Commission Schedules Public Hearing for Proposed Zoning Ordinance Amendment to Regulate Drop-Off Donation Boxes – The Fairfax County Planning Commission will hear public testimony on July 8 at 8:15 p.m. to consider a proposed amendment to the Fairfax County Zoning Ordinance for donation drop-off boxes placed in commercial parking lots, unused areas of roadways, or any other highly visible locations. The proposed amendment would specify the dimensions, quantity, and locations for placement of the donation drop-off boxes. It also would specify the construction, maintenance, and signage/identification requirements. The public hearing will be held in the Board Auditorium of the Fairfax County Government Center, 12000 Government Center Parkway in Fairfax. Information about the proposed Zoning Ordinance amendment is available at www.fairfaxcounty.gov/dpz/zoningordinance/proposed/donationdropoffboxes.pdf. A public hearing about the proposed Zoning Ordinance amendment is scheduled before the Board of Supervisors on Tuesday, October 6, 2015 at 4 p.m.
Planning Commission to Decide Seven Corners Draft Comprehensive Plan Amendment – Decision by the Planning Commission about the Draft Comprehensive Plan Amendment for Seven Corners is scheduled for Wednesday, July 15, 2015 at 8:15 p.m. The proposal, which had its public hearing before the Planning Commission on May 7, includes recommendations by the Seven Corners Task Force and the Special Working Group, as well as input by a separate Community Work Group.
The public hearing before the Board of Supervisors is scheduled on Tuesday, July 28, 2015 at 4 p.m. Both will take place in the Board Auditorium, Fairfax County Government Center, located at 12000 Government Center Parkway in Fairfax. Some of the major objectives of the plan include:
- Create a long range (2040) vision that is both responsive and a driver of change;
- Develop a modern transportation network that alleviates traffic congestion and serves all users including pedestrians, vehicles, bicyclists, and transit riders;
- Ensure the long-term economic viability of the Seven Corners area;
- Enhance the appearance and functionality of the area through the creation of a high-quality public realm with a variety of parks, plazas, and sidewalk spaces for the Seven Corners community;
- Improve the environmental sustainability of the community, and greater region.
Information about the draft Comprehensive Plan and study documents are available online at www.fairfaxcounty.gov/dpz/sevencorners/. For more information, or if you have questions, send an e-mail to Bernard Suchicital at Bernard.Suchicital@fairfaxcounty.gov.
2015 Consumer Action Handbook
The 2015 edition of the Consumer Action Handbook is available! This handbook, published by the federal government, is loaded with helpful information about various consumer matters, useful tips, who to contact with problems, and how to file a complaint. The handbook includes a consumer assistance directory of companies, federal, state, and local government agencies, trade associations, and national consumer organizations. The Consumer Action Handbook is free. To order a copy, visit http://publications.usa.gov or call 1-888-878-3256. The handbook also is available in Spanish, and can be viewed and downloaded from the Web site.
Mason Matters! The Television Show – The last two weeks of July/August edition of Mason Matters!, the television show that brings you news and information about our Mason District community, hosted by Supervisor Penny Gross, features Shelley Murphy, president and CEO of Wesley Housing Development Corporation, and Robert Schwaninger, Mason District's commissioner on Fairfax County's Redevelopment and Housing Authority. For generations, the American dream was to one day own a home, which may seem out of reach for low- and moderate-income, poor families, or individuals with disabilities or other special needs. Home ownership also may seem unattainable for some in our workforce, such as teachers and public safety personnel. Fairfax County has programs to assist first-time homebuyers, low- and moderate-income families, the poor, and others who may need housing assistance. No matter who we are, where we're from, or what our financial status may be, we all need a place to call home. Mason Matters! airs on Cable Channel 16 every Thursday at 7 p.m., and every Friday and Sunday at 6:30 p.m., and daily on-line at www.fairfaxcounty.gov/mason.
Board of Supervisors Approves Large Area Community Parking District (CPD) for Mason District – On Tuesday, June 23, 2015 the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors approved the Mason Community Parking District (CPD) based on Fairfax County Code Chapter 82, Article 5B. The geographical area for this CPD is the entire Mason Magisterial District. A CPD does not allow certain vehicles to be parked on public streets in residential areas. Vehicles that are prohibited include: watercraft, boat trailers, motor homes, camping trailers, and any other trailer or semi-trailer, regardless of whether such trailer or semi-trailer is attached to another vehicle. Exemptions to the CPD include: vehicles used by federal, state, or local agencies to provide services; commercial vehicles discharging passengers, performing work or providing services; vehicles temporarily parked, for up to 48 hours, for the purpose of loading, unloading, or preparing for a trip. During the month of July, parking enforcement officers will place information flyers on vehicles that would be affected by the new CPD. Enforcement of the CPD begins August 1, 2015. Vehicles not in compliance would be issued a $75 fine, and the vehicle may be towed at owner's expense. For more information about the CPD is available at http://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/fcdot/rtap.htm#cpd.
Northern Virginia Transportation Commission (NVTC) Conducts Envision Route 7 Transit Study – The Route 7 Corridor Transit Study is being conducted by NVTC in collaboration with the Northern Virginia Transportation Authority (NVTA). NVTA funded the study, which includes an in-depth assessment of existing travel needs along the corridor to develop recommendations to improve mobility and accessibility in the Route 7 corridor, between Tysons and the City of Alexandria. The study is being conducted in two phases. The first phase included an initial screening and analysis of transit modes and a preliminary look at viability. Based on the Phase I screening process, two high-capacity transit modes were advanced for further evaluation under the current study: Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) and Light Rail Transit (LRT). Phase II, currently in progress, will evaluate these modes and take a more in-depth look at the potential for implementing enhanced transit in the corridor. NVTC currently is soliciting public comment via a crowdsource map that is accessible at www.envisionroute7.com/crowdsource/map. Comments also are welcome by calling the Transit Study Comment Line at 1-844-RT7-STUDY. The primary objective of this study is to assess the project for viability and, if desired, prepare for entrance into the Federal Transit Administration's Project Development process. More information about the Envision Route 7 study is available at www.envisionroute7.com/. Questions about the study may be submitted by e-mail to EnvisionRoute7@nvtdc.org, or call 571-483-3231. Information about NVTC is available at www.novatransit.org/.
That's Cool! – Summer is here again and the Department of Family Services (DFS) is accepting applications for the Cooling component of the Energy Assistance Program until August 17, 2015. There are three ways to apply for the Cooling Program:
- Online at https://commonhelp.virginia.gov/access/;
- Pick up an application at any one of DFS' four office locations (Lake Anne, Pennino, Annandale, and South County) during regular business hours (8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. See the following link http://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/dfs/about/dfs-locations.htm for the building addresses);
- Contact 703-787-3100 for questions, or to request an application be mailed to the person interested in applying for cooling assistance.
If a household is found eligible for Cooling Assistance, the program can help with:
- Up to $200 payment of electric bills;
- Repairs to air conditioning equipment; and
- Pay for a window air conditioner or fan for households with no air conditioning.
Please Note: In addition to the household being income eligible for the Cooling Assistance program, it also must contain at least one of the following: a person 60 years of age or older, a child under age six, or someone who has been determined disabled for Medicaid or Social Security. For additional information about the Cooling Assistance program, please visit the Web site at http://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/dfs/ss/cooling_assistance.htm.
More news and information can be found at the NewsWire.