Week in Herndon

Week in Herndon

Herndon Elementary Site Plan Modular Add-On Approved

Installation of Herndon Elementary School’s new, 10-classroom modular add-on is slated to begin as soon as school is dismissed for the summer, after the Herndon Town Council unanimously approved its development site plan at last week’s public hearing.

The add-on, which will replace the school’s nine temporary trailer classrooms, is slated to be the new home for Herndon Elementary School’s fifth- and sixth-grade students until at least 2016.

At that time, the school is expected to receive renovation funds from Fairfax County Public Schools for a permanent addition to the school, according to Herndon Elementary School principal Carolyn Gannaway.

The new modular unit, which will be set approximately 30 feet from the main building, will include separate bathrooms and water access as well as interior heated pathways between classrooms. Construction costs will total a little more than $2 million, according to Gannaway.

Construction is expected to last throughout the summer, with the unit being ready for student use by the start of the 2007-2008 school year, according to Fairfax County Public Schools.

International Armor Company in Herndon Fined

A Herndon-based armor supply contractor has pleaded guilty to federal charges stemming from the “unlicensed export” of ballistic helmets to Surinam in 2002, according to the office of the U.S. Attorney of the Eastern District of Virginia.

Alpine Armoring, Inc., and its president, Fred Khouroushi, pleaded guilty to the unlicensed exporting charge as well as a charge of “making false statements on a shipper’s export declaration” according to the U.S. Attorney’s office. Khouroushi and his company have agreed to pay $200,000 in federal fines.

Khouroushi’s charge was rooted in his statement on an export declaration form that no license was required for the shipment of the helmets to the South American country, according to information provided by the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

With its international headquarters based on the 500 block of Herndon for 10 years with a local staff of four full-time employees, Alpine Armoring, Inc. provides “90 percent” of its services to the U.S. government and U.S. private clients, Khouroushi said in a phone interview.

The company provides protection equipment such as armored cars and body armor to its clients, which include the U.S. military and law enforcement agencies worldwide, according to its Web site. The company is an authorized United Nations international vendor.

English Ordinance Passes

Council member Bill Tirrell’s ordinance espousing the benefits of learning English and requiring all non-essential town documents to be printed in English was passed by a vote of 4-3 at last week’s town council public hearing.

The resolution affirms English as the primary language of the town and encourages the town manager to leave the translation of town material that does not “impact the health, safety and/or welfare of Town residents” to private organizations, according to its text.

Herndon Mayor Steve DeBenedittis and council members Harlon Reece and Dave Kirby voted not to support the amendment, citing different reasons for discomfort with its wording during the voting process.

Tirrell’s resolution had been rewritten several times by town staff before it was sent to council for approval last week, the council member said.

Rust Appointed to Transportation Board

Del. Tom Rust received the bi-partisan endorsement on March 20 of Del. Vince Callahan (R – McLean) and Sen. Chuck Colgan (D – Prince William) to take the position left vacant by the late Del. Harry Parrish of Manassas on the National Capital Region Transportation Planning Board (TPB). Callahan and Colgan are the co-chairmen of the General Assembly’s Northern Virginia delegation.

The National Capital Region acts as a regional forum for transportation planning. It prepares plans and programs that the federal government must approve in order for federal transportation funds to flow to the Washington region.

Members of the TPB include representatives of local governments; state transportation agencies; the Maryland and Virginia General Assemblies; the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority; and non-voting members from the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority and federal agencies.

The TPB’s planning area covers the District of Columbia and surrounding jurisdictions. In Maryland these jurisdictions include Frederick County, Montgomery County, and Prince George’s County and the St. Charles urbanized area of Charles County, plus the cities of Bowie, College Park, Gaithersburg, Greenbelt, Rockville, and Takoma Park. In Virginia, the planning area includes Alexandria, Arlington County, the City of Fairfax, Fairfax County, Falls Church, Loudoun County, Manassas, and Prince William County.

“I am grateful for this appointment,” Rust said. “Transportation is vitally important to our region, and it is an issue I have worked on since 2002 when I was first elected to the General Assembly. This year, we are very close to an agreement that would finally bring more money to Northern Virginia than has ever come here in the history of the Commonwealth. I am truly honored to have been chosen to fill the shoes of Harry Parrish in this role, whose gentlemanly demeanor and quiet effectiveness were legendary.”