New Clarendon Alliance Executive Director
Jenée Padmore is the new Clarendon Alliance Executive Director. The Alliance is comprised of about 50 businesses for the purpose of promoting Clarendon, including the annual Clarendon Day street festival. More at ARLnow Story
Watermain Under Key to be Replaced
Seems like Key is perpetually dug up in one block or another. Now, the County has approved replacement of the 94-year-old watermain below Key Blvd from N Jackson to N Danville and the block of N Herndon north of Key. This old watermain has had numerous breaks in the past few years. The watermain will be replaced with a more durable, larger diameter watermain. Construction is expected begin in the Spring and is expected to take a year and a half. A detailed letter about the project and schedule will be sent to the president of the LVCA and notices will be distributed to affected residents.County Board Agenda Item
Residential Permit Parking (LVCA General Meeting Recap)
The January LVCA meeting featured an overview of proposed changes to Arlington’s Residential Permit Parking Program (RPP). Many people know it as “Zone 6 Parking.”
A presentation by LVCA Board Member Andrew Rude, who has been following the RPP review for LVCA. County staff were invited to make a presentation, but declined. Andy summarized the changes the county is considering: some good and some that LVCA Board Members think should be changed. Several members of nearby neighborhood associations, who will also be impacted by RPP changes, attended the meeting. We will be working together on this. The County Board is planning to vote on these changes at its regular meeting in February (tentatively Feb 20).
Members of the LVCA Board and representatives from other Arlington neighborhood associations are meeting to develop a common position on the proposed RPP changes and to communicate with the County Board about the proposed changes.
BBB Criticizes COMCAST Ads
The BBB National Programs’ National Advertising Division concluded Comcast hadn’t supported the best-experience claim with objective metrics. This month the self-regulatory group upheld its earlier decision. Comcast said it would comply. News Releasse
First Case of B.1.1.7 COVID-19 Found in NoVa
The Virginia Department of Health (VDH) and the Department of General Services Division of Consolidated Laboratory Services (DCLS) announced that the first case of the SARS-CoV-2 variant B.1.1.7 has been identified in a sample from an adult resident of Northern Virginia with no reported recent travel history. The B.1.1.7 variant, which first emerged in the United Kingdom in late 2020, is associated with increased person-to-person transmission of COVID-19. VDH News Release
County Rescheduling Cancelled Vaccine Appointments
Arlington County is rescheduleing COVID-19 vaccine appointments canceled by Virginia Hospital Center at its community vaccine clinics due to inadequate vaccine availability. Individuals who have already received a first dose of the vaccine at the VHC-managed clinic at the Walter Reed Community Center will still receive their second dose as scheduled.
County residents who receive cancellation notices from VHC will be contacted directly by the County to reschedule as vaccine supply becomes available in the coming weeks. Arlington is ready to deliver vaccine as supplies become available. Recent vaccine deliveries have been less than expected. Announcements by the new Federal administration raise hopes for an increased availability of vaccine in the near future.
After submitting the County COVID-19 vaccination registration form, the confirmation page displays the message shown below. It states there are problems sending email to aol.com and version.net email accounts. Email sent to such email accounts is occasionally not delivered for no apparent reason. So, if possible, you should not enter AOL or Verizon email accounts on the form. Your webmaster can confirm that these email providers (and also Yahoo) do randomly reject emails for no apparent reason. (AOL and Yahoo are both owned by Verizon.)
Arlington COVID-19 Pre-Registration Form
APS Report on COVID Cases
At the School Board meeting Thursday (Jan 21), APS reported that nearly 6% of staff and 5% of students who participated in in-person education have tested positive for COVID-19. APS declined to reveal building-level data and is unable to determine if COVID infections occurred inside or outside of school or how many were student-facing staff. More granular data is promised in the future.
Nearly 1,800 APS employees received vaccine doses this past holiday weekend.
Both parents who want in-person classes to resume, and teachers and parents who want the opposite, have been holding demonstrations and protests. Last Saturday (Jan 16) more than 100 parents, school staff, and students rallied in favor of continued virtual learning. Next Saturday (Jan 23) parents who want in-person classes to resume plan to rally. ARLnow News Item
County COVID Vaccination Goal Not Achievable
The County’s stated goal of 14,000 first-round vaccinations per week is not achievable as Federal administrators stated that there will be no more than 110,000 doses available per week for the entire state of Virginia. Meeting the goal would require 13% of Virginia’s allotment, but Arlington’s population is less than 3% of the state’s total population. WTOP
Availability Limits Covid-19 Vaccine Distribution
Arlington Board Chair de Ferranti said: “Today Arlington will be inoculating 900 Arlington County teachers, after inoculating 900 on Saturday… We have the capacity to do at least 2,000 doses per day… Arlington has the infrastructure, staff, and preparation in place to continue to deliver the vaccine at the scale of these two events, and we are ready to use considerable additional staff from our Fire Department to scale immediately to do more vaccines. Supply of vaccine is the only limitation on our ability…” News Release
Arlington’s 2019 over 18 population: 195,000 persons
Deduct 20% no vaxers: 156,000 persons
Vaccinations: 2000 per day
Time to vaccinate all if vaccine is available: 78 days
Or 173 days at today’s pace
Vaccine Demand Exceeds Supply
Arlington is receiving far fewer COVID-19 vaccine doses than needed to meet demand. The County is prepared to ramp up and expedite vaccinations as soon as it receives additional doses from Virginia. The distribution of vaccine to Virginia is managed by the CDC and the US Dept of Defense. The expansion of eligible people does not increase Arlington’s supply of vaccine. The County Manager and Public Health Director are working flat-out to secure vaccines and to get them into arms. News Release
COVID Vaccine Eligibility Expands to 1c
Virginia Governor Northam announced that NoVa residents (including Arlington) who are over 65, and residents under 65 with comorbidities are being moved from phase 1c up to phase 1b of the state’s vaccination rollout. This means they now eligible to receive the vaccine. Ramping up the vaccination rate will require a better federal partnership, Northam said, which he expects to see with the Biden administration. WashingtonianArlington COVID-19 Pre-Registration Form
COVID Vaccination for Teachers
Arlington Public Schools announced that teacher vaccinations “will begin this weekend,” Sat, Jan 16. However, there are reports of computers crashing and appointment emails failing to arrive. ARLnow
New COVID Variants Are Scary The New York Times reports Scientists are still learning about new versions of the coronavirus, including variants that emerged in Britain, South Africa and Brazil. The evidence so far indicates that they “are much more infectious than the Italian strain, which has been circulating here since February,” my colleague Donald G. McNeil Jr. told me. “That’s a game changer.” Behavior that may once have been only moderately risky — say, airplane travel — may now be more so… New York Times
Arlington 7-day average new cases: 52 per 100,000 residents. NYT Interactive
COVID-19 Vaccinations Going Too Slowly
With an average vaccination rate of just over 225 doses per day over the past week, it would take the 843 days to administer a dose to the remainder of Arlington’s adult population. The PHD director told the Board it was having difficulty finding suitable locations for mass vaccinations. Commentators responded that the county has many schools and libraries that are currently unused. ARLnow
Free COVID-19 Testing
The county has placed two COVID-19 testing kiosks in county-owned parking lots in south Arlington. Both will operate from noon to 8PM, 7 days per week. Results are promised within 72 hours. Doctor referrals or government identification is not required. The locations are:
● Aurora Hills Community Center, 735 S 18th St
● Tucker Field at Barcroft Park, 4200 S Four Mile Run Dr
Unfortunately, a recent Food and Drug Administration advisory warned of false negative results with this test. False negatives indicate that someone is COVID-19 free, when they actually have COVID-19. FDA AdvisoryCounty News ReleaseVideo of Testing ProcessMake an Appointment
Property Values & Taxes Rise Significantly
Residential property values increased 5.6% overall. The assessed value of the average single-family property rose from $686,300 to $724,400. Approximately 90% of residential property owners will see their assessed value increase. The tax rate is also expected to increase. Assessments will be mailed to Arlington property owners beginning Jan 15. See Your Assessment OnlineNews Release
Arlington Rents Drop 15% A survey of the nation’s 50 largest cities finds that COVID-19 disrupted the rental market in expensive cities, like Arlington. The change in annual trend started late March as COVID-19 concerns intensified. At the same time rents rose in midsize cities. The survey notes that expensive rental markets possess many renters able to telework, eliminating the need to live close to work. Also, laid-off workers became unable to continue paying high rents. The farther away from city centers, rents have not declined as much. Further declines are not anticipated. Survey at Apartment List
LVCA General Meeting: Residential Permit Parking
When: Mon, Jan 11, 8PM
Where: Virtual via Zoom About Zoom ONLINE ONLY: There is no meeting at the Community House. Police Update
The meeting will start with an update from LV’s Community Policing Team. Residential Permit Parking Program
The January meeting will feature an overview of proposed changes to Arlington’s Residential Permit Parking Program (RPP). Many people know it as “Zone 6 Parking.” Join us to learn more about the changes that the county is considering: some good and some that LVCA Board Members think should be changed.
The presenter will be LVCA Board Member Andrew Rude, who has been following the RPP review process for LVCA. County staff were invited to make a presentation, but declined.
Members of other neighborhood associations, who will be impacted by changes to the RPP have been invited to this online meeting.
A link to the meeting will be emailed to all subscribers to the LVCA broadcast email on the day of the event (Jan 11); just click the link in the email to join the meeting. Please join the meeting a bit early, like 7:50 PM, so you will be ready when we start promptly at 8 PM. The meeting is limited to 100 attendees so latecomers may not be able to join.
COVID Phase 1B Shots Begin Mon, Jan 11
Starting Jan 11, in Arlington and several other health districts, Virginia will overlap vaccination of groups 1A and 1B to ensure people are vaccinated as quickly and efficiently as possible.
● Group 1A: Healthcare personnel and people living in long-term care.
● Group 1B: Persons 75 and older; Police, Fire, & Hazmat; Corrections & homeless shelter workers; Childcare/K-12 Teachers/Staff; Food and Agriculture (including Veterinarians); Manufacturing; Grocery store workers; Public transit workers; Mail carriers (USPS and private); and officials needed to maintain continuity of government.
It is expected to take several weeks or months to vaccinate Virginians in Phase 1b. The ability to schedule appointments depends on vaccine supply, which is limited. News Release
Arlington Pre-Registration Form Arlington residents in group 1B & 1C can pre-register. Arlington County Public Health Division will email 1B registrants to schedule appointments. Phase 1C registrants will be notified when Arlington moves into Phase 1C. Arlington Pre-Registration
Northam to Accelerate COVID-19 Vaccinations
Northam set an initial goal of vaccinating 25,000 Virginians each day when supply allows. Medical facilities will be required to put the vaccine they receive into arms as soon as possible, or risk having future vaccine allotments reduced. K-12 teachers and child care workers will be among the next priority group after Group A. The Virginia National Guard will provide logistical support and help local health departments. News Release
APS Return-to-School Update Jan 8 2021
Superintendent Durán provided an update on APS return-to-school status & decisions.
● Teachers & staff will begin a phased return to school buildings in late Jan.
● No dates for students return; don’t want to give dates that get recinded.
● Health metrics are far from enabling students to return.
● Majority of teachers (61%) oppose students returning to school.
● Average number of student devices connecting to the network: 96%.
● Will launch a COVID-19 app for health screening of employees & families.
● Will publish COVID-19 statistics by building, facility, or division.
● K-12 teachers are included in the state’s second phase vaccine rollout.
● A distance learning task force has been established. News ReleaseSlide Deck
APS 1Q2020 Grade Report
The report compares student grades in 1Q2019 (in-class education) to 1Q2020 (distance learning) for Middle School (MS) and High School (HS) students. Results are similar to APS previous report for K-2 students: significant disparities between economically disadvantaged and non-economically disadvantaged students.
However, the APS report suggests that both economically disadvantaged and non-economically disadvantaged students who were already doing well in school, continue to do well. The decline in grades appears to be concentrated in economically disadvantaged students who were already not doing well in school. APS is developing programs to assist those whose grades declined. Click to Continue Reading…