Newsletter of the Rose Hill Civic Association
January 2009

Rose Hill Civic Association Meeting
Tuesday, January 27, 7pm
John Marshall Library

Agenda:  Representatives of Springfield Mall will be on hand to present plans for expansion of the mall over the next 10-15 years. Some of the work on the mall itself has begun. Future plans for hotels, office buildings and condos are subject to County zoning approval, which is in process.

RHCA Officers and Volunteers

President

Carl Sell

703.971.4716

sellcarl@aol.com

Vice President

Linda Nichols

703.971.0755

dovefellow@aol.com

Secretary

Beth Kohm

703.338.4876

beth.kohm@gmail.com

Treasurer

Carolyn Slenska

703.922.4135

carolyn.slenska@lycos.com

Editor, The Rambler

Marty Williams

703.910.6316

marty@fabrications.us

Neighborhood Watch

Woody Betts

703.971.0520

rosehillwatch@aol.com

Webmaster

Jim Sapp

303.816.0944

jimsapp7@msn.com

RHCA, P.O. Box 10891, Alexandria, VA 22310

www.MyRoseHill.com

President’s Message

Santa Claus was Everywhere in Lights During the Holiday Season in Rose Hill

Santa Claus sure got around in Rose Hill. His image was everywhere in lights as the judges made their rounds to select the best displays for the 2008 season. At the Szamborskis on Winston Place, he was piloting an airplane and riding a ferris wheel and carousel. Those were just a few of the 13 inflatable displays that also include a band playing Christmas music. It took Don Szamborski several weeks to get all the displays in place. His efforts earned a Grand Prize for 2008.

Also on Winston Place, the Dillons had lights outlining their entire house with Santa on the roof and a polar bear mom and her cub in the front yard. They also earned a Grand Prize.

The Fulks on Cottonwood Drive have so much fun decorating their house, their daughter Tracy Campbell, who lives just across Rose Hill Drive from mom and pop, decided to upgrade her display this year. Both earned Grand Prize awards. The judges suspect that Larry Fulk had something to do with his daughter’s upgrade.

There were two Grand Prize winners on May Boulevard, the Valdes just a few doors down from Rose Hill Drive and the James in the cul de sac at the end where the original Rose Hill manor house once stood.  Cynthia Johnson-Dailey, an annual winner for her door and window displays, took a Grand Prize this year for her tasteful display on Eastchester Circle just across from the shopping center.

As promised, the Downey family continued the legacy with a Hall of Fame display on Telegraph Road just across from Lee District Park. Myrna Downey passed away earlier this year, but her legacy shines on during the holidays. And, the Nguyens wished everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year with large lighted signs on Rose Hill Drive.  The Luginbill’s tree on Rose Hill Drive once again was a beacon of holiday cheer for Rose Hill residents and visitors to our community.

The entire list of this year’s winners appears on Pages 5 and 6 of this issue of The Rambler. It also is posted on our web site, MyRoseHill.com, where you’ll find a slide show of some of the displays. If you think we missed anyone, or had wrong information, please contact us and we will include it in the February Rambler. It is possible the judges missed some displays because the lights weren't on when they made their rounds.

Special Election February 3

There will be a special election to fill the vacant Chairman of the Board of Supervisors position. It will be held on Tuesday, February 3. As usual, Rose Hill will vote at the elementary school between the hours of 6am and 7pm. The vacancy was created when the incumbent, Gerry Connolly, was elected to replace the retired Tom Davis as the representative of Virginia’s 11th District in the Congress of the United States. Two current members and two independents are running to fill the chairman’s seat.  Pat Herrity from the Spring-field District and Sharon Bulova of the Braddock District are on the ballot, as well as independents Carey Campbell and Christopher DeCarlo. Bulova has been the chair of the Board’s budget committee while Herrity was elected to replace the retired Elaine McConnell in 2006.  

Neighborhood Watch

We’re still looking for a few strong residents to look out for their immediate neighbors. It involves keeping an eye out for suspicious or illegal activity and making sure our senior citizens have someone to whom to turn should they need assistance.  Neighborhood watchers are asked to keep their eyes open as they come and go. Report crimes in progress to 911 and suspicious activity to the police non-emergency number of 703.691.2131.  They can report violations that detract from our community either directly to zoning enforcement at 703.324.1300 or an RHCA officer. We need help on such streets as Roundhill Road, Climbhill Road, Apple Tree Drive, Willowood Lane, Driftwood Drive, Telegraph Road, Flower Lane, May Boulevard, Silo Road, Rye Court, and the cul de sacs across from the shopping center. On long streets such as Roundhill, Apple Tree, and Willowood, we need more than one person. We generally assign areas by the hundred blocks on those streets. This is an extremely important service to your community. Rose Hill has a low crime rate and does not tolerate those who denigrate the community by not following County rules designed to help maintain our property values. We need your help to make sure we continue to maintain our community as a safe and comfortable place to live.

The recent police report on an incident nearby shows just how diligence of neighbors can nip crime in the bud:

Franconia District Weekly Incident Summary Report-Jan. 1-7, 2009

Devereux Circle, 7000 Block:  Two men were apprehended after they reportedly broke into a home on Tuesday, January 6. A neighbor in the 7000 block of Devereux Circle called police after watching the two men force entry into a neighbor's home through a window. Officers arrived and located the two suspects inside the house. Bruno Tramaleo-Caceres, 20, of 5309 Martinique Lane in Alexandria and Michael Mauna, 19, of 14306 Jeffries Road in Woodbridge were both transported to the Fairfax County Adult Detention Center. Both suspects were charged with burglary.

A Safe and Livable Community

Our efforts to keep Rose Hill safe and comfortable are paying off. There are a number of problem properties in the community that are the subject of County action as the result of our complaints. It takes a long time to correct a problem, so try to be patient if the problem is near or next to you. At the start of a New Year, we thought we would outline several of the issues that will bring county inspectors or police to the doors of violators:

  • Overcrowding of people or vehicles

  • Parking on the front lawn

  • Trash accumulation

  • Loud parties or music

  • More than one commercial vehicle per address

  • Inoperable vehicles on the street or property (These are vehicles that cannot move under their own power or do not have valid inspection stickers or license plates. Out of state license plates parked in Virginia after 30 days can result in a ticket [except active-duty military].)

  • Operation of a business that attracts clients or requires non-resident workers (except those allowed under the zoning ordinance or approved by Special Permit or Special Exception).

Call any of the RHCA Officers if you have a question about any of the above.

Residents living on Rose Hill Drive are reminded that the strip of land between the sidewalk and the road belongs to the Commonwealth of Virginia. Parking is prohibited on the strip. Signs are posted to this effect as you enter Rose Hill from both directions. Violation can result in a ticket.

Membership Drive

You can support the efforts of your Association by renewing, activating your membership for 2009, or joining for the first time. We need your support to continue to print The Rambler nine times a year, support our Rose Hill Beauty program, and several organizations and efforts that are important to our community such as Koinonia, the annual Christmas dinner and breakfast for our police, Edison High School’s all-night graduation party, and food for the staff at Lee District Park on July 4. Residents are reminded that ONLY RHCA members are eligible to receive the coveted Rose Hill Beauty signs. In addition to your dues, we ask for contributions to maintain the seasonal plantings at our community marker at the corner of Rose Hill Drive and Franconia Road. We also encourage contributions to the general fund because, quite frankly, the dues of $10 are not sufficient to cover expenses. For example, the printing of The Rambler costs approximately $3,000 per year. So, we’d have to have 300 members to pay that bill. Unfortunately, not everyone remembers to support their community, so we have to ask for help. RHCA is a volunteer organization. The Rambler is distributed by volunteers and our neighborhood watch is a labor of love.  The officers, Rambler editor, and webmaster all get to buy their own gas. Please fill out the Membership Form and send it, along with your dues and contribution, to RHCA, P.O. Box 10891, Franconia, VA 22310. Those who so far have signed up for 2009 are listed below.

RHCA Members as of January 8, 2009

Augusto Alvarez, 6507 Carriage Drive

H. & G. Newman, 4910 Silo Road

Nida & Jerry Antonio, 6406 May Boulevard

Dave & Linda Nichols, 6416 Rose Hill Drive

Rick & Pat Ballard, 4519 Lark Lane

But Nguyen, 6512 Rose Hill Drive

Carl & Margaret Bon, 5001 Eastchester Circle

Teal Norris & Fred Obermeyer, 6012 Leewood Drive

Daniel Bearth, 6417 Rose Hill Drive

Lucy & Larry Pettit, 6501 Carriage Drive

Gary Bravy, 6214 Climbhill Road

Jo Ann Ponce, 6203 Willowood Lane

Roger & Carol Christiansen, 6409 Maryview Street

Monica Reed, 6422 Rose Hill Drive

Bob Ciccotelli, 6511 Haystack Road

Adam & Rita Rice, 6431 Carriage Drive

Matthew & Cynthia Dailey, 5009 Eastchester Circle

James & Nancy Richey, 4402 Roundhill Road

Susan Feagley, 4705 Split Rock Road

David Ridgway, 4609 Cottonwood Place

Tom Felleisen, 6406 Hayfield Place

James & Marie Sherfey, 6415 Rose Hill Drive

Joseph Finnegan, 6409 Hayfield Place

Diana & Marty Shupack, 6419 Haystack Road

Anna Fish, 6301 Cottonwood Drive

Michael Smith/Ratri Friend, 6111 Leewood Drive

Kae Furneisen, 4912 Treetop Lane

Mary Stinnette, 4520 Apple Tree Drive

John & Erica Good, 4604 Roundhill Road

Thomas Strah, 6421 Rose Hill Drive

D.J. Jamison, 4707 Split Rock Road

Judy Taylor & Carlos Rolon, 6503 Rose Hill Drive

Jim & Lynda Kandul, 6218 Blossom Lane

Joanne Thompson

Ana & Charles Kimberly, 6504 Cottonwood Drive

Nina Tisara, 6408 Hayfield Court

John & Patricia Lawrence, 6330 Maryview Street

Connie Vincenzes, 6610 Cottonwood Drive

James Lockwood, 6114 Clovergrass Drive

Don & Nina Weber, 6120 Dew Grass Court

Raymond & Evelyn Market, 4608 Mayor Place

Norma Youmans, 6303 Climbhill Road

Mark & Natalie McBride, 4421 Roundhill Road

 

Budget, Assessments

The latest projection is that the County budget will have a deficit of more than $600 million for the fiscal year 2010, which starts July 1, 2009. The Board of Supervisors MUST adopt a balanced budget prior to that date. Last year, the total budget expenditure was more than $3 billion. Of that, the school system received approximately 53 percent. So far this year, the County has identified $200 million in cuts for other than school programs. The School Board is in the process of adopting a budget. The superintendent has proposed a budget that proposes the same amount of County contribution as last year. The County Executive will present his budget program to the Board of Supervisors on February 23.  The Board then will hold public hearings, after which it will have to either make more cuts or raise the tax rate or a combination of both. Each penny on the tax rate results in $22.1 million in revenue for the County. So you can see we are in dire straits as far as the budget is concerned. If no further cuts were instituted, it would take a 20 to 25 cent increase in the tax rate to balance the budget.  Imagine that as you plan for the future!

Also on February 23, the County Executive will announce the overall real estate assessment picture for the County. It is expected that the value will fall an average of 14 percent over last year. Each of you will receive your assessment notices shortly after that date. The budget deficit is based in part on the falling revenues from those assessments.

The Board of Supervisors plans to adopt a final budget on April 27. There is going to be a lot of interesting dialogue between now and then.  Hopefully, the County will be able to adopt a budget that at least holds the line on the dollar figure each of us paid last year as the rate goes up and the value goes down. That may be wishful thinking in these tough economic times.

As a member of Supervisor McKay’s budget committee, my goal is to limit the amount of out-of-pocket expense for homeowners. Equally important to me is to institute procedures that will force the County not to add programs in good years just to spend money while at the same time not saving enough for the rainy days that crop up every so often. Balanced budgets are fine, but bloated ones catch up with us. The County needs its own savings plan.

Wedding Bells

Congratulations to Mr. and Mrs. Tom Mangum, who tied the knot on New Year’s Day. Tom and his bride, Alice (Wilder) have lived in Rose Hill for 12 years. They were married at the home of their neighbors, the Nichols, with Dave Nichols, a licensed preacher, performing the ceremony. A reception was held at the newlyweds’ recently refurbished home the Sunday after the ceremony. Tom and Alice are both dedicated supporters of RHCA and work diligently to help improve our community.

—Carl Sell

Advertising in the Rambler

We have recently received several inquiries concerning advertising in the Rambler. While a listing in the Business Directory is free to Rose Hill residents who own their business, placing an actual advertisement is open to all with rates as follows per month:

Business Card size

3 1/2" x 2"

$10

Quarter page size

3 1/2" x 4 3/4"

$25

Half page size

7 1/2" x 4 3/4"

$50

Full page size

7 1/2" x 9 3/4"

$100

Ads may be bought for either one month only, month-to-month, or as many months in advance as desired. Our newsletter is published nine times a year, excluding July, August and December.

Advertising in the Rambler is an excellent way to reach the 700+ homes in our community. In addition, the ads each month are placed on our website www.MyRoseHill.com for the world to see.

Anyone interested in placing an ad may call the editor (me) at 703.910.6316. I will need the artwork sent to me either electronically in a .tiff or .jpg format or as a hard copy through the mail. Checks made out to RHCA may be included with ads mailed to me, or sent to our PO Box 10891 for quick access to the treasurer.

Marty Williams

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