News to Use Podcast Transcript: Sept. 22, 2009

Fairfax County Podcasts 


Good day, and welcome to the Fairfax County News to Use podcast for September 22, 2009. Coming up, find out how you can share your input and solutions for the county’s FY 2011 budget,  Fall for Fairfax, and learn how to save money while being kind to your plants and the environment, by making rain barrels for your home.


Fairfax County is projecting a significant budget deficit for FY 2011 (beginning July 1, 2010). The county is in the midst of a multi-year, cyclical downturn. Our ongoing challenge is to develop a budget with an appropriate level of services that is both sustainable and acceptable to the community.  County officials want to hear from you.  Fairfax County Government and Fairfax County Public Schools invite you to register and attend one of 12 Community Dialogues being held this fall.  Share your feedback on the impacts of recent budget reductions and suggest solutions to close the FY 2011 budget gap.   Dialogue sessions take place beginning Sept. 29 and continuing through Saturday Nov. 14.  The sessions are held at locations throughout the county, on weekends and mid-week.  For more information visit At that location, you’ll also find information on other ways to provide input, including the online feedback form, and the budget hotline, 703-324-9400.


Fall is in the air, and that means the 17th annual Fall for Fairfax is just around the corner.  This year’s event will be held on Saturday, Oct. 3, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on the grounds of the Fairfax County government center.  Performances include everything from ballet to kids’ music, and even martial arts demonstrations.  Stroll exhibits from more than 100 local businesses, hit the Kidway Midway for fun rides, climb aboard the Fall for Fairfax trackless train, make a scarecrow, take a hayride, or roll up your sleeves for some hands-on “Mad Science” experiments.  Admission to the festival is free, as are many of the events and activities.  For more information on activities and attractions, visit


Wondering how you can make your garden more efficient, while helping the environment and saving money?  Look no further than the Northern Virginia Soil & Water Conservation District’s rain barrel workshops.  Rain barrels can be attached to your downspouts to capture runoff from the roof. By installing a rain barrel at your home you can keep your plants happy, since rain water is naturally soft, save by using rain water instead of water from the tap, and protect the Chesapeake Bay by reducing storm runoff.

 Rain barrels purchased from mail order or retail sources can be prohibitively expensive. As part of a regional initiative, the NVSWCD offers build-your-own rain barrel workshops and distributes low-cost rain barrels to Fairfax County citizens. At the workshops, you will learn how to install and maintain a rain barrel and take one home! Upcoming workshops will be held on Oct. 1 in Arlington and Oct. 24 in Alexandria.  Registration is required, and closes one week prior to the event. The materials fee per barrel is $50 for build-your-own workshops. A $2 surcharge is charged per barrel for online registration. Limit: 2 rain barrels per person.  For more information go to


That’s all for this News to Use podcast. Thanks for listening. For more information about the topics in this podcast and for continuous news updates, visit You may also call 703-FAIRFAX, that’s 703-324-7329, weekdays between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. News to Use is produced by the Fairfax County, Virginia, government.  

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