Newsletter of the Rose Hill Civic Association
November 2004

President's Message

Help Support Wounded Veterans By Donating Needed Items

The Rose Hill Civic Association will be collecting items needed by our wounded veterans of Afghanistan and Iraq who are being treated at Walter Reed Army Medical Center and the Bethesda Naval Hospital. Bring your donations to our meeting on Tuesday, November 23, at 7 pm, in the community room of the John Marshall Library.

The Association extends a special invitation to the veterans in our community who have served in the Armed Forces at any time. Come and accept the gratitude of your neighbors. If any of you have parents or relatives who have served our country, bring them along! We also hope to have a veteran who recently served in Afghanistan or Iraq. Refreshments will be served.

RHCA is appealing to the community to help provide items that are in short supply at the hospitals. Needed items include: new white tee shirts, new elastic band gym shorts, and prepaid rechargeable phone cards that can be distributed to the veterans. Toiletry items such as toothpaste, shampoo, deodorants, razors, shaving cream, electric razors, and sanitary supplies also are in short supply. Remember, there are both male and female wounded veterans.

In addition, if you have any recent magazines, books, VHS videos, or DVDs that you no longer want or need, please bring them to the meeting. Also, we are sure that any warmer items such as sweatpants and sweatshirts also would be appreciated.

Bring the items to the meeting and RHCA will make sure they get to the veterans. The Community Advisory Council of the Franconia District Police Station is coordinating the collection of donations.

Section III Update

If you notice surveyors and drilling equipment on the 22 acres bounded by Rose Hill Drive, Cottonwood Drive, and Carriage Drive, it does not mean that construction of the 45 houses is about to begin. The County has asked for additional tests to determine the stability of the soil and drainage of runoff as part of the site plan approval process. Some of the new borings will take place near or at the property line in order to make sure adjacent existing homes will not be affected.

RHCA met with Fairfax County staff on November 1 to make sure everyone is working from the same Special Exception plat approved by the Board of Supervisors in July. That appears to be the case. We will continue to monitor the process in an effort to make sure there are no changes without community input. We are committed to maintaining the integrity of the buffer negotiated as part of the approval. However, we have told the developer and the County that the safety of existing homes is the most important aspect of the site plan process. That’s one of the reasons for the additional tests.

We expect to meet with County staff prior to the final approval of the site plan. Adjacent homeowners will be notified of the meeting so everyone will be aware of what is going to happen before ground is broken. If you have any questions, please give me a call at 703.971.4716 or e-mail me at sellcarl@aol.com. The development team has kept RHCA updated every step of the way and we want to continue that process with the County staff. Remember, the developer will be working with contiguous property owners to establish a baseline of conditions to each house to be used in the event future development causes any problems. A $2 million revolving fund has been established in order to correct any damage caused during construction. RHCA advises each homeowner to take pictures or videotape existing conditions in order to avoid problems later.

Holiday Lighting Contest

Rose Hill is aglow during the Holidays and RHCA wants to reward those who go to extra lengths to spread Christmas cheer. We can’t afford to pay your electric bill, but we will once again be awarding certificates to the winners in the 2004 Holiday Lighting contest.

The judging will be done between Christmas Day and New Year’s Day, so make sure you keep your lights on until at least 9 pm on those days. If you’d like to help judge, contact Carl Sell at 703.971.4716 or Terrie Dacales at 703.317.5912 and we’ll sign you up. It usually takes about three hours to tour the community. If you can’t make the tour, you can help by nominating any of your neighbors who deserve recognition. That way we’ll make sure they aren’t missed as the judges make their rounds. Remember, it isn’t the quantity of the lights that’s important, it’s the quality of the display. We also look closely for window and door displays. Religious themes and originality also catch the judges’ eyes. We could really use more sets of eyes to make sure no worthy display is missed!

Traffic and Speeding Update

At its October meeting, the RHCA membership authorized its officers to contact Fairfax County in an effort to curtail speeding and cut-through traffic in our community. RHCA has corresponded with Supervisor Kauffman outlining a series of suggestions for slowing down traffic on Rose Hill Drive and numerous internal streets. We have suggested a series of stop signs for Rose Hill Drive, Apple Tree Drive, and Willowood Lane. We have suggested speed humps or tables as traffic-calming devices on Cottonwood Drive and Leewood Drive. You can view the correspondence on our website, MyRoseHill.com. Just click on Correspondence on the main page.

All of the streets within Rose Hill are controlled by the Virginia Department of Transportation. However, requests for stop signs and traffic-calming must first go to Fairfax County before being considered by VDOT. In addition to the stop signs and traffic-calming devices, we have suggested No Parking signs on Rose Hill Drive, both on the pavement and the grassy strip between the pavement and the sidewalk. Because of traffic volume, parking on Rose Hill Drive creates a dangerous and confusing situation. Parking on the grass is confusing and dangerous for pedestrians on the busy sidewalk.

Editor’s Note: Norm Cherkis, a member of the Community Advisory Council, has provided me with information on the County’s Traffic Safety Watch. If you see an obvious violation such as an aggressive driver or an unbuckled child, the form used to report such behavior has been reproduced for your convenience on page 5. You can also report violations online at MyRoseHill.com or at www.fairfaxcounty.gov/ps/police/traf_sfty_report.htm. If you would like reprints of the form produced here in The Rambler, just give me a call at 703.924.7192.  —Marty Williams

Please return report within 10 days of observation to:

Fairfax County Police Department
Traffic Division, Traffic Safety Watch
3911 Woodburn Road
Annandale, VA  22003

Redevelopment Issues

Recently, a number of houses in Rose Hill have been greatly expanded. In at least two cases, the entire rambler was torn down and a new structure is rising in its place. At its October meeting, RHCA engaged in a lively discussion as to how these new structures fit into the character of our neighborhood. Since there probably will be more ‘tear downs’ and expansions, we want to remind everyone of the present rules. First, a building permit must be issued, and all construction inspected and approved by Fairfax County. All permits must be posted in plain sight. In order to obtain a building permit, the addition or reconstruction must adhere to all zoning regulations. Rose Hill is zoned R-3 (three units per acre). With the R-3 classification, buildings are limited to 35 feet in height and must include side yards of at least 12 feet, front yards of at least 30 feet and rear yards of at least 25 feet. The remaining buildable space and height determines the square footage of the house. Obviously, existing Rose Hill ramblers are far below what is allowed by right. Heretofore, most of the improvements have been at or near the height of the existing house.

If you see new development and cannot determine if a building permit has been issued, let RHCA know and we will forward the question to the County’s Department of Environmental Management and Public Works. Notices of violations and a stop work order normally result until the contractor or homeowner obeys the law. A request to deviate from the zoning regulations must be approved by the Board of Zoning Appeals and requires a public hearing.

RHCA Files Objection

The John Marshall Library branch manager has instituted a new procedure for reserving the community room for meetings by civic groups. It requires RHCA, for example, to renew its request for meeting space every six months. If not, the space will not be available. For many years, RHCA has utilized the community room for meetings on the fourth Tuesday of January, February, March, April, May, June, September, October, and November. We have asked that those dates be permanently assigned to RHCA. So far, the request has been refused. We have taken our request to a ‘higher court.’ The concern on our part is that any transition to future officers might result in lack of timely communication with the Library and the meeting site reassigned to others. As the representative of the Rose Hill community, we feel RHCA should be accorded a permanent schedule for its meetings in the ‘community’ room. We under-stand any requests for additional meetings would re-quire coordination with the Library staff. Just thought the members should be aware of the situation in case it comes up in conversation.

—Carl Sell

Support Your Community By Joining RHCA in 2005

We are kicking off the 2005 membership drive in this edition of The Rambler because we don’t print in December. The drive will run through March of the New Year, but we would appreciate it if you would renew your membership or sign up as a new member as soon as possible. We will begin printing the names of our members in the January issue of The Rambler.

Membership in RHCA is voluntary. No one will knock on your door and ask you to join. The solicitation is done through The Rambler and online at myRoseHill.com. The dues are only $10 per year. We also ask for contributions for specific projects such as the maintenance of the flowerbed at the entrance sign at Rose Hill Drive and Franconia Road.

This year we are participating in a beautification of the John Marshall Library grounds. The flowerbed at the Library that faces Rose Hill Drive was readied for spring planting by volunteers this past October. Now we need to purchase materials and the flowers that will be planted. We also hope to have enough funding to maintain the Library site like we do the flowers at the entrance sign.

Through the contributions of its members last year, RHCA was able to purchase and install 50th anniversary signage at each entrance to the community. We even had enough funds available to repair the entrance sign after it crumbled because of age. The combination of RHCA contributions, a $500 contribution from the Rose Hill apartments, and excellent support by Ron Dillon and his crew, we were able to repair the sign for less than half the cost of previous estimates. Still, the repairs cost $1,400. We could not have done it without your support.

The regular dues of $10, along with advertising, covers the cost of printing The Rambler nine times a year. Volunteers deliver The Rambler to every house in Rose Hill. The dues also pay for the cell phone available to those members of Neighborhood Watch that don’t have their own communication device.

In addition, the dues fund the coveted Rose Hill Beauty signs. Remember, only members of the Association receive signs. Those members as well as the non-member winners are listed in The Rambler and on myRoseHill.com. Winners of the holiday lighting contest receive certificates from the Association and are listed in The Rambler and our website.

The dues also allow us to contribute to the dinner for police and emergency personnel that are on duty Christmas Eve. Most everything is closed that night, so the Community Advisory Council members cook up a feast for those who protect us on the Holiday. We also support Koinonia yearly, the organization that helps spread Christmas cheer year round to the less fortunate among us. Finally, we support the Edison All-Night Graduation Party that keeps our young people safely entertained on that important occasion.

The RHCA Membership Application is available on-line.  Just click on the link and it will take you right to it.  Please fill it out and send it back as soon as possible. On the form, please note if your e-mail address has changed from last year.

We greatly appreciate your support. Rose Hill has one of the most active civic associations in Fairfax County. With your help, we’ll keep it that way!

—Carl Sell

Employment Opportunities

Verizon recently announced fiber to the premises (FTTP) deployment in six states: NY, DE, MD, MA, PA, and VA. FTTP is Verizon’s major initiative to build a fiber-based broadband network to homes and businesses, providing the bandwidth to deliver voice, video, data, and combinations of services that have not been offered before.

Nearly 1,300 Verizon employees are already working on FTTP and more are needed in the Potomac and Atlantic Central Market Areas to complete the FTTP network. The new jobs will involve building, provisioning, and maintaining the new fiber networks.

The following positions are available in several locations in PA, DE, MD, VA and DC:

  • Cable Splicing Technician
  • Splicing Technician
  • Outside Plant Technician
  • Services Technician
  • Central Office Technician
  • Switching Equipment Technician

If you are qualified or want more information, contact Dwight Williams at 703.204.5550.

Within the Community...

Do you have a couple hours a month to help us out? RHCA can’t pay you, but it will make you feel good knowing you’re helping to make Rose Hill a great place to live.

We are in need of a Rambler Distributor. The job entails picking up The Rambler copies from The UPS Store, dividing them up for the individual delivery people, and getting those packages to their houses by Saturday morning, the weekend before the monthly meeting. This position only requires one to two hours per month and only nine months out of the year.

We’re also seeking someone to help deliver The Rambler. It’s an easy, part-time job, perfect for someone who likes to walk, like students, moms, and retirees. Once again, this position only requires one to two hours of your time, nine months out of the year.

For those who can spare one to five days a month...

We need someone to volunteer to sell ads for The Rambler. Spending just a few hours a month can yield big returns for RHCA. The rates are so reasonable, many businesses can’t resist.

Are you a computer geek with web experience? We don’t care if you’re not a geek, but we need someone in the area who can keep MyRoseHill.com up-to-date and running smoothly. Our current webmaster is living in Colorado and we’d like to have someone a little closer to home. If you or someone you know would enjoy playing with a website, the position entails about 8 to 10 hours per month.

For the community-spirited and leadership-minded, we are looking for a new president and vice president to step forward and take over the reigns for Carl Sell and Terrie Dacales. Coming forward now would allow time for a "training" and sharing of knowledge period.

For more information or to volunteer, contact Marty Williams (703.924.7192) or Carl Sell (703.971.4716).

Phone Scams

It has been brought to our attention that phone scams are taking place in Rose Hill. In one instance, the Pacific Awards Company issued a U.S. Bank check to a resident. It may have been an attempt to find out an account number, but the resident contacted a lawyer and, fortunately, the resident’s bank was able to determine that the check was a fraud before it was deposited.

Never give out account, credit card, or personal information or your social security number over the phone unless you initiate the call to an organization you know. Also, never provide personal information about family members and never disclose email passwords.

Remember, if it sounds too good to be true, it is!

Neighborhood Ghouls and Goblins

Above: Maybe not too scary, but definitely unusual to see so many people dressed alike. At the October 18 Fairfax Board of Supervisors’ meeting, RHCA was presented a Resolution congratulating, thanking, and paying tribute to the Rose Hill community on the occasion of its 50th anniversary. Pictured from left to right are Norm Cherkis, Marty Williams, Linda Nichols, Board Chairman Gerry Connolly, Carl Sell, Supervisor Dana Kauffman, Terrie Dacales, Connie Beatty, Twila Noble, and Woody Betts.

Just who were those creatures walking our streets on October 29? Mama High’s Pre-School and Day Care children got all dressed up for Halloween (albeit a little early and in daylight) and then started out on the streets, "terrorizing" the neighborhood. They were so cute, Alice Wilder couldn’t resist taking their pictures. Thanks to both Mrs. High and Alice for allowing us to print the photos.

Koinonia Urgent Appeal

The Koinonia Foundation, Inc., recently contacted Rose Hill Civic Association with an urgent appeal for donations. Several large, non-budgeted expenses played a roll in their current $31,000+ deficit. At the October RHCA meeting, the motion was passed to make our annual donation early, but more help is desperately needed. Please help out and contribute by mailing a check to: Koinonia, 6037 Franconia Road, Alexandria, VA 22310-1701.

Another way to help out is through automatic payroll deductions. If you can help out through the Combined Federal Campaign (CFC) or United Way, the number for Koinonia is 8283, and for Virginia state employees enrolled in the Combined Virginia Campaign, the number is 8440. Some employers use special numbers, so please check. Any donations will be greatly appreciated by your neighbors who Koinonia serves in so many ways!

Koinonia’s Holiday Wishes Program provides needy children (birth to age 18) with new gifts for Christmas. If you would like to help them provide gifts to those might not otherwise have anything to celebrate this time of year, drop off new, unwrapped items at 6037 Franconia Road between November 29 and December 10. Gift wrap, tags, bow, and tape are also appreciated by parents. Gift suggestions for children include: building blocks, puzzles, books, toy trucks and cars, arts and crafts, family board games, sports equipment, legos, and dolls. Suggestions for teens include: cologne/perfume, watches, journals, footballs, basketballs, soccer balls, cameras, CD players/walkmans, hair accessories, fiction books, and especially gift cards since most teens want clothing. Thank you in advance for your help.

—Marty Williams

The next Rambler deadline is January 14, 2004.
The next delivery weekend is January 22-23, 2004.

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 me at 703-924-7192. Artwork can be sent to marty@fabrications.us in tiff or jpeg format or hardcopy mailed to P.O. Box 10891, Alexandria, VA 22310. Checks made out to RHCA should be included with ads and sent to the P.O. Box.

Marty Williams

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