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by Dave Emke — September 18, 2017 at 4:00 pm 13 Comments

During a special Monday afternoon session (video), the Reston Association Board of Directors voted to guide staff toward using operating reserves to pay off the remaining $2.4 million on the Lake House loan as the 2018 budget is compiled.

Sridhar Ganesan, treasurer and At-Large member, shared information with directors about what he says is a “low-risk” option that would benefit members. CEO Cate Fulkerson said staff “strongly desires” the loan be paid off this year using the reserves.

“These are things we should consider as a Board, but my own perspective is [that] if we cannot put the money to work in other areas, [then] this is like returning money back to the shareholders,” Ganesan said.

Ganesan said RA’s operating reserves have never fallen below $4 million, and that they peak at around $12 million each year as assessments are collected. Given this information, he said, there is little concern associated with funds being taken from the account and used to pay off the loan now.

Ganesan had earlier shared this information with members during a community budget workshop last week. Taking care of the loan would reduce the assessment rate by $8.66 in 2018.

Director Julie Bitzer (South Lakes District) asked whether Ganesan and staff had considered making the payoff in multiple stages instead of all at once, if the Board is “nervous” about taking so much from reserves. Ganesan said he believes there is no reason to be uncomfortable about taking the money from reserves in one lump sum.

“You have enough cashflow coming in [from assessments] in order to meet the expenses in case there is [any] problem,” he said. “[Even if] on March 1, only 50 percent of members have paid their assessments — that’s a real problem, that’s a crisis. But even then, we have collected 50 percent of assessments; that’s $7.5 million.”

(more…)

by Dave Emke — September 15, 2017 at 2:45 pm 106 Comments

(This article was updated at 6 p.m. to clarify information about interest payments on the loan.)

Speaking to members during a community budget meeting Thursday night, Reston Association’s treasurer made the argument for why the $2.4 million that remains on the Lake House loan should be paid as soon as possible.

Sridhar Ganesan explained to the small crowd at Reston Association headquarters that excess money is available in RA’s operating reserves that may be best used by taking care of the loan once and for all.

“I think the risk is pretty low [and] from a cash-flow perspective, I’m pretty comfortable [paying the loan off],” he said.

If the loan continues to be paid off through 2025, as is currently scheduled, Reston Association will be making payments of about $182,000 each year. In addition, there will be a $1.57 million balloon payment due at the end of the payments. Ganesan said interest rates are likely to increase between now and then as well, and refinancing costs would apply if RA decides to go that route.

Ganesan said that as Reston Association’s operating reserves have never fallen below $4 million — and peak at around $12 million each year as assessments are collected — funds are available to be taken from the account and used to pay off the loan now. Ganesan said interest on the loan collects at about $80,000 per year, while the idle operating reserves only gain about $59,000 in 2016.

Monthly operating spending for RA is about $1.25 million, Ganesan said.

“So the question is, what do we do? … Should we use that [reserve] money, that idle money, to pay off the loan?” Ganesan asked. “This is a question that we need to address, and we’d love to get comments from the public as well.”

Paying off the loan would result in RA’s projected 2018 member assessment rate decreasing by $8.66 per household, Ganesan said, and future assessment rates would benefit from having the loan off the books. The 2018 assessment was projected in the budget’s first draft at $678.

“It [would be] a use of money to pay back the members for the next 10 years,” he said.

Ganesan was asked whether he would have suggested paying for the Lake House property in full from reserve funding at the time of acquisition rather than borrowing the money. He said, if he were comfortable with the investment and the price was right, that “absolutely” would have been his suggestion.

The Lake House is projected to bring in about $143,000 in 2017, well below the $300,000 estimate that was in the budget. Ganesan said its budget projection for 2018 is $230,000 — with about $340,000 in expenses. He said RA is considering changing the way the Lake House operates in order to begin closing that gap, including possible expansion of operating hours and changing to an all-rental model (as opposed to offering programming there).

“Rentals tend to fetch a lot more money than programming,” he said. “So, should we just go to an all-rental model … in order to make sure we make as much money as we can, in order to make sure we get a payback from the investment?”

No decisions on the budget have yet been made.

The RA Board will have a special budget meeting, open to the public, Monday from noon-5 p.m. Members will also have an opportunity to discuss the budget with the Board of Directors at the Oct. 15 Lake House open house. Public hearings on the final draft of the budget will take place Oct. 26 and Oct. 30, and it is due to be finalized at the Board’s Nov. 16 meeting.

Thursday’s community meeting was recorded by Reston Association staff and will be made available on its YouTube channel soon.

by Dave Emke — September 13, 2017 at 1:45 pm 4 Comments

Tickets are now on sale for the 16th annual Reston Home Tour, slated for Saturday, Oct. 14.

According to information provided by tour organizer Reston Historic Trust and Museum, the tour “focuses on six homes whose owners have moved in within the last few years and whose homes have given them a new perspective on their life, their surroundings and in some cases their attitudes.”

The homes on the tour include residences on Bromley Village Lane, Hemingway Drive, Orchard Lane, South Shore Road and Spyglass Cove Lane, as well as at the Stratford condominiums. In addition, Reston Association’s Lake House and Bozzuto’s Aperture apartment building will be open for tour.

Tickets can be purchased for $25 through Oct. 7, after which the price will increase to $30. Group-rate tickets are available in blocks of 10 or more for $20 each. They can be bought online or at a number of area locations including:

  • Reston Museum (1639 Washington Plaza N.)
  • Chesapeake Chocolates (11426 Washington Plaza W.)
  • Greater Reston Arts Center (12001 Market St.)
  • Appalachian Spring (11877 Market St.)
  • The Wine Cabinet (1416 North Point Village Center)

All proceeds from the event benefit the Reston Historic Trust and Museum, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to preserving the past, informing the present and influencing the future of Reston through its educational programming, archives and exhibitions.

For more information about the event, contact the Reston Historic Trust and Museum at [email protected] or 703-709-7700.

Images courtesy Reston Historic Trust and Museum

by RestonNow.com — September 8, 2017 at 11:30 am 0

It will be another busy weekend in the Reston/Herndon area.

Among the highlights will be the 34th annual Reston Triathlon, which will start at 7 a.m. Sunday at Lake Audubon. Those taking part will swim 1,500 meters in Lake Audubon, bike 40 kilometers on area roadways and run 10 kilometers on Reston pathways, ending at the South Lakes High School stadium.

Some traffic in South Reston will be affected by the event. Take note of the attached map of which roads will have bike traffic during the event, which is scheduled to last until about 11 a.m.

Volunteers are still needed for the event, as well.

Even if you aren’t taking part in the triathlon, though, there is plenty else to do around the area this weekend too. Listed below are some other events that you can enjoy.

(Editor’s Note: This is just a limited list of all the events taking place in the Reston area this weekend. If you have an event you would like to ensure is listed on the website, be sure to submit it to our Events Calendar.)

  • The JamBrew series continues tonight in Herndon. Aslin Beer Co. will be pouring frosty mugs, Weird Brothers Coffee will be offering tasty drinks, Nordic Knot Pretzels will provide tasty snacks, and there will be much more. Live music will be offered from MK Skillz, Shane Gamble and Burn the Ballroom. The free event is slated for 6-10 p.m. at the Herndon Town Green (777 Lynn St.).
  • North Point Village Center will celebrate the arrival of fall Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., with a Fall Kick-Off event. Washington Redskins great and former All-Pro defensive end Dexter Manley will meet fans at Glory Days Grill (1400 North Point Village Center) from noon to 2 p.m., while the event will also feature carnival games, roaming characters for kids, a DJ playing music, a moon bounce and more.
  • DogFest Walk ‘n Roll, a charity event to benefit Canine Companions for Independence, will be at Reston Town Center on Sunday. Admission and parking are free.
  • The next exhibition at Greater Reston Arts Center (12001 Market St.), featuring the work of D.C.-based artist Sue Wrbican, opens Saturday with a free public reception Saturday from 5-7 p.m. at the gallery. “Sue Wrbican: Well Past the Echo” will be on view through Nov. 18.
  • The Reston Farmers Market will take place from 8 a.m. to noon Saturday at Lake Anne Village Center.
  • Lake Anne is also hosting Sunday Yoga on the Plaza each week, at 9:30 a.m.
  • There will be a ChalkFest workshop Saturday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Reston Town Center (11900 Market St.). The free event will be hosted by Public Art Reston.
  • Pulitzer Prize-winner display “Disgraced,” exploring Muslim assimilation and identity in America, will be performed at NextStop Theatre Company (269 Sunset Park Drive, Herndon) tonight at 8 p.m.; Saturday at 7 p.m.; and at a 2 p.m. Sunday matinee. Tickets range in price from $17.50 to $55.
  • The Water Mine (1400 Lake Fairfax Drive) will “go to the dogs” Sunday for its annual Dog Daze event. Suggested donation is $10 per dog. In addition to the doggie splashing, there will be a canine resource fair, door prizes, demonstrations and more.
  • The Herndon Garden Tour, slated for Sunday, will feature five private gardens, as well as the Monarch butterfly waystation at Runnymede Park. Painting demos, garden music and more will also be offered. Gardeners will be on hand during the self-guided tour to discuss their gardens and answer questions. Cost is $15; children 12 and under can participate for free.
  • An open house at The Lake House (11450 Baron Cameron Drive) is planned for 10 a.m. to noon Sunday.
  • At Reston Regional Library (11925 Bowman Towne Drive), the movie “Musicals” will be shown from 2-4 p.m. Saturday.
  • United Christian Parish (11508 North Shore Drive) will host a panel of community and faith leaders on Sunday at 2 p.m. for what it is calling a “post-Charlottesville town hall.” According to information provided by the church, residents are invited to take part in the “[discussion of] bigotry and unconscious bias as we seek to work together to heal the wounds.”
  • Many restaurants and bars in Reston will have live music this weekend. These include: Vinifera Wine Bar and Bistro (11750 Sunrise Valley Drive) from 7-10 p.m every Friday and Saturday night; Crafthouse (1888 Explorer St.) every Friday and Saturday night from 10 p.m. to 1:30 a.m.; and Tavern64 (1800 Presidents St.) every Friday from 6-10 p.m.
  • Kalypso’s Sports Tavern (1617 Washington Plaza N.) will have live music from Catchin’ Toads tonight from 9:30 p.m. to 1:30 a.m.; and DJ Kram will play Top 40 hits during those hours Saturday night.

by Dave Emke — August 15, 2017 at 2:45 pm 12 Comments

The search for savings by Reston Association staff has resulted in a $678 proposed assessment rate for 2018.

The figure was discussed during a budget workshop session with the RA Board of Directors on Monday (video/PowerPoint presentation). That number would be a decrease of $42 (5.83 percent) from the 2017 assessment level of $720, which was reduced to $692 using surplus cash.

One of the major factors that influenced the budget development, allowing for the decrease in the proposed rate, is the additional assessment revenue that will be provided by 429 new units at the Sunrise Square and VY developments.

That assessment rate will likely change, though, before the Board finalizes the 2018 operations budget, projected at $14.3 million. The Board has been asked to consider numerous staff and member suggestions which could affect the budget.

One big way it could change depends upon whether the Board decides to pay off the loan on the Lake House. If it does so — at a cost of $182,797 — there will be a reduction of $8.66 in the 2018 assessment rate as a result of no longer making payments.

“Essentially, we’ll be using up our cash to pay off the loan,” Sridhar. “In the corporate world, you give it back to the shareholders, which in this case is the members.”

The 2018 budget currently on the table has the Lake House being maintained on the status quo, through programming and rentals while making payments on the loan. That would result in a net loss of more than $190,000, according to the projection. Other options on the table include continuing status quo for six months and then moving to only rentals, or to use the facility for rentals only. With those latter options, along with paying off the loan, the Lake House is projected to represent a net profit in the 2018 budget.

CEO Cate Fulkerson said staff “highly recommends” the Board pay off the loan at the end of this year.

“I am looking forward to that conversation, because I think that there is a lot of area where the Board can make a positive impact on the community, both financially and through programming,” said Sherri Hebert, Board president.

In addition to bringing in in-house legal support, the cost of which Fulkerson said would be canceled out by the savings from reducing outside legal services, the Board is also being asked to consider other staffing additions.

Anna Varone, director of covenants administration, asked the Board to consider adding a post-DRB project approval inspector. This position is estimated to add $55,885 (salary and benefits) to the budget, with a $2.65 impact on the assessment.

“We’ve been challenged by having projects that have been approved by the DRB and not having someone that’s been able to go and inspect after the member has installed the project,” Varone said. “We’ve not had the resources to go out and ensure that the member has installed the project correctly.”

Mike McNamara, deputy director of maintenance, said the Board should consider adding two seasonal workers to address litter control. This would cost about $40,000 (salary and supplies), with an impact of $1.93 on the assessment.

At a meeting last week, the Board was presented a potential $2.82 million Capital Projects budget.

A community meeting on the budget development process is scheduled for 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 14. The Board will then hold further budget work sessions, along with a joint meeting with Fairfax County Supervisor Cathy Hudgins, on Monday, Sept. 18.

The final drafts of the capital projects and operations budgets are to be presented Sept. 28, with public hearings in October and the approval in November.

by Dave Emke — July 28, 2017 at 4:00 pm 26 Comments

Giving his first full report to the Reston Association Board of Directors (video), treasurer and At-Large director Sridhar Ganesan broke down the figures for the first half of 2017.

Among the figures shared by Ganesan was $16.7 million in year-to-date revenue, 86 percent of which ($14.4 million) is from assessments. That number is up from $16.0 million at the same time last year, a change Ganesan attributed to an increased assessment rate from 2016.

One budget item that isn’t bringing in as much money as expected, Ganesan reported, is the Lake House. The facility has brought in about $80,000 as of the end of June, only slightly more than half of what was projected ($150,000).

“As I understand, it’s really because of scheduling conflicts, in terms of programs versus corporate and other rentals,” Ganesan said. “They’re still working through the scheduling issues, but you are going to see this difference flowing throughout the year.”

The Lake House, purchased by RA in 2015 for $2.65 million, is rented out for activities including weddings, corporate functions, retreats, workshops and conferences.

Lake House expenses as of the end of June have been about $126,000, Ganesan said.

“Part of the reason is going to be that a lot of those costs are on a fixed basis, so you really can’t pull them back even if you’re having some revenue challenges,” he said.

RA CEO Cate Fulkerson said programming changes are being considered for next year.

“The current programming hasn’t changed yet [but] we are reflecting some different programming as we go into 2018,” she said. “So there will be some decision points for the Board there, but we’ve adjusted based on our experience in the first six months.”

Later in Thursday’s meeting, a pair of capital projects advanced.

The Board approved the release $1.35 million in remaining project funds for the Central Services Facility renovation, which had been put on hold last year until the controversial Lake House purchase was independently reviewed. In addition, the Board voted to form a Hook Road Recreation Area working group, which will explore ways to enhance the facility within budget constraints set by the Board.

by RestonNow.com — May 19, 2017 at 2:45 pm 0

The big event this weekend is the Northern Virginia Fine Arts Festival, which will bring tens of thousands to Reston Town Center  beginning tonight. The kickoff party is from 6-9 p.m. tonight; tickets are $50. The event itself is the next two days, with admission a $5 suggested donation for adults. It will run from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday.

But there is plenty else going on in the area this weekend too. Here is just a sampling of what’s available to you, your family and friends in the coming days:

  • Reston’s Relay for Life event will begin at 1 p.m. Saturday at South Lakes High School (11400 South Lakes Drive). The luminaria ceremony is set for 9 p.m. Saturday, with the event to continue through the night and wrap up at 7 a.m. Sunday.
  • The Reston Farmers Market will take place from 8 a.m. to noon Saturday at Lake Anne Village Center. The Pink Armoire Fashion Truck will be in attendance this week.
  • Lake Anne is also hosting Sunday Yoga on the Plaza each week, at 9:30 a.m.
  • Radcliffe Bailey: The Great Dismal Swamp” remains on display at Greater Reston Arts Center (12001 Market St.) through August.
  • The Habitat Heroes program seeks volunteers to cut back the large invasive bush honeysuckle that has taken over the field edge at Sunrise Valley Rec Area (10805 Oldfield Drive), Saturday from 10 a.m. to noon.
  • There will be a bird walk Sunday from 7:30-10:30 a.m. at Stratton Woods Park. Meet at the Polo Fields Recreation Area.
  • Reston Association will host an open house at The Lake House on Sunday from 10 a.m. to noon.
  • The 18th annual Teachers and Students Exhibit remains on display at the Jo Ann Rose Gallery at Reston Community Center-Lake Anne (1609 Washington Plaza N.) through June 5.
  • Live music at Reston Town Center this weekend will include a performance from 6-10 p.m. tonight at Tavern64 (1800 Presidents St.) and both tonight and Saturday from 10 p.m. to 1:30 a.m. at Crafthouse (1888 Explorer St.).
  • Lucky Dog Animal Rescue will have an adoption event at PetSmart (11860 Spectrum Center) from noon to 2 p.m. Saturday.
  • This week at Reston Regional Library (11925 Bowman Towne Drive), Frying Pan Farm Park will visit Saturday from 11 a.m. to noon; and “First Ladies and Scandals in the City” will be presented Saturday from 1-3 p.m.
  • The My Health Matters 5K/1-mile Walk and Free Health Fair is slated for Saturday from 8 a.m. to noon at the 505 Building at Herndon Square (505 Huntmar Park Drive).
  • Kalypso’s (1617 Washington Plaza N.) will have live music tonight, 9:30 p.m. to 1:30 a.m., from Medicated Sunfish. DJ Kram will play Top 40 hits Saturday night.
  • Vinafera Wine Bar and Bistro (11750 Sunrise Valley Drive) has live music from 7-10 p.m. every Friday and Saturday night.
  • Matt Waller will play at The Tasting Room Wine Bar (1816 Library St.) from 8-11 p.m. Saturday.

by RestonNow.com — May 1, 2017 at 10:15 am 23 Comments

Beginning this week, The Lake House (1145o Baron Cameron Ave.) is saying “namaste” to visitors through the efforts of a local yoga studio.

BelovedYoga is renting out the facility overlooking Lake Newport as a venue to offer yoga classes for the community. Classes are available for all ages.

Reston Association members who have never been to BelovedYoga are invited to take a class free during the month of May. A five-class pass can be purchased for $50.

Check out the class schedule on the studio’s website.

Save

by Dave Emke — April 12, 2017 at 2:45 pm 24 Comments

Speaking at Reston Association’s annual Members’ Meeting on Tuesday, CEO Cate Fulkerson said she is looking to capitalize on the opportunities presented by challenges RA has faced in the past year.

“For anyone who knows my leadership style, I’m not one who walks away from a challenge or ignores difficulties,” Fulkerson said as she addressed the audience. “I believe in taking responsibility for errors, correcting them so they do not happen again, and I believe in finding opportunity in difficulty.”

Specifically, the difficulties of which Fulkerson spoke included the controversy surrounding the Tetra/Lake House renovation, concerns about how RA handles conflicts of interest, and the public input process regarding the Lake Newport soccer field proposal. Moving forward, Fulkerson said she understands the importance of building community trust and continuing on the path of leading sustainable change.

Fulkerson said she and her staff have a number of important tasks to complete in order for that to happen. The first, she said, is to establish a solid foundation with the incoming board — based, she said, on mutual respect, reciprocal communications and shared purpose.

The CEO said the StoneTurn Group review of the Tetra/Lake House deal highlighted several ways Reston Association can work toward bettering internal control policies and procedures for project management. She said she is developing a proposal along with RA CFO Robert Wood that includes the conduct of an internal process control and a walk-through review of RA’s purchasing practices, contract processing and capital-project management.

“The goal will be to have a new system in place by August of this year, so we can take the opportunity to invite StoneTurn to audit the Association in 2018 and to make sure the new processes and policies are being followed,” Fulkerson said.

Continuing work to establish a Code of Ethics for Reston Association is also on Fulkerson’s list of tasks, as she said it is of utmost importance as they work to build community trust.

In regard to new development, Fulkerson said Reston National Golf Course, Tall Oaks Village Center and St. John’s Wood are just some examples of “how vitally important it is for Reston Association to keep on track with leading sustainable change by vigilantly monitoring land-use happenings and advocating for trees, trails and thoughtful design.”

Fulkerson said community input is important to all decisions made by Reston Association. She said listening meetings are being planned for May and June in each of Reston’s districts to gather feedback on what matters most to RA members.

“Our interest is to engage you in conversation,” she said. “The timing of these listening meetings goes hand-in-hand with the development of the 2018 and 2019 Capital and Operating budgets.”

In addition to inviting feedback at the upcoming meetings, the CEO encouraged members to fill out request/suggestion forms for the budget.

Full video of Fulkerson’s speech is available through the Reston Association YouTube channel.

by Dave Emke — April 10, 2017 at 9:00 am 8 Comments

Herndon Man Dies in Route 7 Crash — Rush Hone Elmore, 69, died Friday after his vehicle was rear-ended near Leesburg. The impact of the crash forced his car off the roadway, where it overturned. He died at Reston Hospital Center. [Leesburg Police Department]

Units Respond to Kitchen Fire in Reston — Firefighters attacked a blaze Sunday afternoon at a home in the 12300 block of Brown Fox Way. [Fairfax County Fire and Rescue/Twitter]

Plum Campaign Event Set for April 30 — Del. Ken Plum (D-Fairfax) will kick off his campaign for re-election to the state House of Delegates with a fundraiser at The Lake House (11450 Baron Cameron Ave.). Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring is scheduled to be in attendance to show his support. [Del. Ken Plum]

Reston Students Profiled in ‘KidsPost’ — Katie Damon’s second-grade class at Terraset Elementary School voted on their favorite author, singer, sport and more for a profile in this weekend’s Washington Post. The kids also reported what they want to be when they grow up and what superpower they’d like to have. [Washington Post]

Bridge Title Claimed by Herndon Woman — Li Yiting was part of the team that won the Machlin Women’s Swiss Teams event at the Spring North American Bridge Championships last month in Kansas City. This is her third championship win. [Fairfax Times]

by Dave Emke — March 24, 2017 at 11:30 am 10 Comments

RA Board of Directors - March 23, 2017

The vote was not unanimous, but the Reston Association Board of Directors decided Thursday to begin working toward a plan of action to adopt the recommendations in StoneTurn Group’s review of the Tetra/Lake House purchase.

Following a public meeting on the issue Monday, it was proposed Thursday that CEO Cate Fulkerson and her staff draft and develop the implementation plan for board consideration at their May meeting. The plan is to take into account the recommendations in StoneTurn’s report as well as all input received from the community at Monday’s meeting, and it is to be designed to have all recommendations ready to be implemented by September.

“It is to share with us what needs to be done, even shifting some of [Fulkerson’s] goals down the road in order to make implementation of the recommendations from StoneTurn an absolute priority,” said Director Michael Sanio, the board’s vice president and a member of RA’s Tetra Review Committee.

The recommendations made by StoneTurn include the drafting of new foundational documents that have an overreaching principle statement to define ethical concerns that may arise during transactions such as the Tetra/Lake House purchase and renovation.

The September deadline was an issue of contention for Director Sherri Hebert, who said the timeline seemed too tight for the amount of work that needs to be done. In addition, she said, the creation of a task force and a community review group should be part of the remediation process.

“[They need to have] an oversight role to make sure that these things are getting done,” she said of the recommendations. “We’re trying to build that trust back with the community, and the community needs to be involved in this implementation.”

Director Ray Wedell said the creation of the task force should be done “immediately.” Other directors stated that if a task force is to be created, it should be the decision of the incoming board in April, after the election. Four new members will be a part of the nine-person board.

Fulkerson said the Board of Directors will have funding issues to consider during the implementation process, as well.

“There is a lot of it staff can do, but there are some things where I’m going to need outside expertise,” she said. “That’s going to cost you money, and you’re going to have to take that up and decide if that’s what you want to do.”

The motion passed by a vote of 5-3, with Hebert, Wedell and Lucinda Shannon voting against it. Director Jeff Thomas was not present.

Meeting screencap via RA/YouTube

by RestonNow.com — March 22, 2017 at 10:15 am 3 Comments

Reston AssociationReston Association is welcoming new — and “not-so-new” — members to an open house to learn more about what the community has to offer.

The event will be held Sunday from 2-4 p.m. at The Lake House (11450 Baron Cameron Ave.).

According to a flier advertising the event, attendees will be able to:

  • learn about aquatics, camps, environmental education and tennis programs
  • learn about upcoming RA events for all ages
  • meet members of the RA Board of Directors and advisory committee
  • purchase pool and tennis passes and learn how to use WebTrac
  • learn about how to get involved in Volunteer Reston
  • vote in the RA Board of Directors’ election
  • meet with the Covenants Advisor and learn about services provided to property owners
  • meet local elected officials and community organization representatives

Refreshments will be provided by Jersey Mike’s, and door prizes will be awarded.

RA’s event calendar shows additional open house events at The Lake House are scheduled for April 30 and May 21.

Attendees are being asked to used WebTrac to register for the event. For more information, email [email protected] or call 703-435-6530.

by Dave Emke — March 21, 2017 at 2:45 pm 22 Comments

Reston Association Board Special Meeting - March 20, 2017

The results of an independent review of Reston Association’s purchase of the Tetra/Lake House property are in, and now the discussion is shifting toward how to make best use of its findings.

That discussion began Monday during a special meeting of the Reston Association Board of Directors. Deirdre Flaherty, partner and co-founder of forensic accounting firm StoneTurn Group, answered questions from both RA members and directors during the session, and offered her advice for RA’s remediation process following the controversial purchase and a renovation process that cost $430,000 more than budgeted.

Flaherty’s advice, which built upon the recommendations offered in StoneTurn’s review in February, included the drafting of foundational documents that have an overreaching principle statement to define ethical concerns — something she says is lacking in RA’s current policy structure.

“When you have an unusual transaction and you don’t have that bedrock foundation, there’s no touchstone,” she said. “It would be my strong suggestion that great consideration is given to what those overarching principles that you want for how you do business, and then take that and drill it into writing, into practical policies and procedures for the staff, that details exactly what is to be done.”

The Board of Directors voted unanimously to accept the review delivered by StoneTurn and to begin working toward implementing the recommendations made therein. Flaherty made a number of other recommendations for how to do so, including giving staff and CEO Cate Fulkerson the time to develop new policies that are in line with the goals of the Association.

“You have some very strong, qualified people in your Association staff [who are] doing a lot of the day-to-day work, and as a result, they haven’t had the opportunity to step back and put those foundational documents into place,” she said. “My strong advice would be to have them do it — to hire people, even on a temporary basis, to handle some of your day-to-day operations so that you can elevate people like your CFO or your new head of capital projects [or] Cate to actually stepping back and giving thought and consideration to what those documents should look like, to having the communications with the membership and the board to make sure you’re comfortable with them, and then to putting them in place.”

It was also suggested by Flaherty that an RA audit committee be formed to independently make findings and assess staff.

“Anytime you have a board, you want the board to be communicating with the auditor [and] you want the auditor to have the ability to communicate with the board to the extent that they have input that is independent of management,” she said. “You want that communication to be open and direct with your board, not filtered in any way.”

(more…)

by Dave Emke — March 20, 2017 at 9:00 am 0

Fun in Fairfax - Instagram - Mar. 19

Reminder: RA Board Special Meeting Tonight  The special meeting of the Reston Association Board of Directors originally scheduled for March 14 will be held tonight at 6:30 p.m. at RA Headquarters (12001 Sunrise Valley Drive). The purpose of the meeting is to discuss the findings in StoneTurn Group’s review of Reston Association’s purchase of the Tetra/Lake House property and the subsequent overruns in the cost of its renovation. [Reston Association]

New Town Center Restaurant Seeks Employees — Hen Penny is the newest restaurant by Pheast Food Group, a subsidiary of Thompson Hospitality. Management says it is planning to open March 30 at 1820 Discovery St., the former home of Pheast’s BRB. The business is looking to hire cashiers, delivery drivers, cooks and more. [Pheast Food Group]

St. Johns Wood Redevelopment Again on Agenda — The Reston Planning & Zoning Committee will have an informational meeting March 27 at 7:30 p.m. on Bozzuto’s planned redevelopment of St. Johns Wood. [Reston Planning & Zoning Committee]

SLHS Grad’s Team Falls in NCAA Tournament — Princess Aghayere, South Lakes High School Class of 2015, played 12 minutes for the University of Pennsylvania Quakers in their NCAA Women’s Basketball Tournament first-round game Saturday against Texas A&M. Penn led by 21 points early in the fourth quarter; however, Texas A&M staged the biggest comeback in women’s tournament history and came out victorious, 63-61. Aghayere scored 2 points and recorded 2 rebounds. [Penn Athletics]

Students Named to All-State Band, Orchestra — The All-Virginia High School Band and Orchestra will both perform April 8 in Manassas. Among the performers will be 77 students from Fairfax County, including several local students. On the All-State Band are Catie George and Mason Moy (South Lakes High School); and Nathan Coughlin, Noah McKee and Emma Rood (Herndon High School). Members of the All-State Orchestra include Herndon High’s James Adams and Ethan Morad. [Fairfax County Public Schools]

Photo via @FunInFairfax on Instagram

by Dave Emke — March 14, 2017 at 11:45 am 2 Comments

Reston Association

(Edited 4:15 p.m. after meeting agenda was posted on RA website)

A special meeting of the Reston Association Board of Directors that had been scheduled for tonight has been postponed due to weather.

The purpose of the meeting is to discuss the findings in StoneTurn Group’s review of Reston Association’s purchase of the Tetra/Lake House property and the subsequent overruns in the cost of its renovation. The special meeting has been rescheduled for Monday, March 20 at 6:30 p.m.

The agenda for Monday’s special meeting includes a 20-minute overview of the report and 90 minutes of discussion between the community and the board about its contents, followed by board consideration.

Tonight’s meeting of the Design Review Board has also been shelved, according to Mike Leone, RA’s communications director.

“With the threat of refreezing roads and sidewalks later today, along with increased wind, RA has decided to cancel all meetings for this evening,” he said.

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