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The Comstock Connection 5.16.13
Thursday, May 16, 2013

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In This Issue
Young Women's Leadership Program Kick-Off Event
Human Trafficking Community Forum
Texting While Driving Town Hall
School Class Size Working Group
Great Falls Day And Congratulations To Colvin Run Mill
May Is Lyme Disease Awareness Month
"Taste of Asia" Event
Youth For Tomorrow's Burgundy and Gold Banquet
Upcoming Events
Save The Date
Contact Me

District Office:
PO Box 6156
McLean, VA 22106
(703) 772-7168
May 16, 2013

Dear Friends,

Summer is almost here! As always, we want to keep up to date with you in the 34th District and hear from you on any of your concerns. Thank you all for your continued input, advice and support.

Please don't hesitate to contact my office on matters of concern to you. I can be reached by email at [email protected] or by phone at 703-772-7168.

Young Women's Leadership Program Kick-Off Event
Saturday, May 11th was the kick-off event for our Young Women's Leadership Program. It's a privilege and a pleasure to meet such a great group of impressive young women from around the Northern Virginia area. It is my hope that this program will inspire the next generation of female leaders to bring their intelligence, drive and solutions to every aspect of their careers. A special thanks to all the parents who came out on Mother's Day weekend to support their daughters at the kick-off.

Delegate Comstock With The 2013 Inaugural Class Of The Young Women's Leadership Program.

This Leadership Program will provide young women enrolled in junior high and high school the opportunity to meet and interact with women in leadership positions in government, politics and business. There will be periodic activities which include but are not limited to a trip to meet Facebook executives, a summit with technology leaders at the Center for Innovative Technology and a tour of CNN and Meet the Press Studios.

Several Members Of The Leadership Program Participate In An Ice-Breaker Activity At The Kick-Off Event.
Recap: "Human Trafficking In Our Backyard" Community Forum

On Friday, May 3rd, I hosted a community forum with Congressman Frank Wolf, Delegate Tim Hugo and the Richmond Justice Initiative at the McLean Community Center.

Recent events show us that the trafficking of young girls is as much a domestic issue that is happening right here in our Northern Virginia community as it is a global problem. For more information about the event and recent cases in Northern Virginia, click here.

I would like to thank Detective Bill Woolf, the members of the Fairfax County Police Department and other local law enforcement for the work they do on a day-to-day basis to bring justice for trafficking victims in our community. I am also encouraged by all the resources, volunteers and education efforts of non-profits and agencies like the Richmond Justice Initiative, Youth for Tomorrow and the National Center for Exploited Children. A special thanks also to Congressman Frank Wolf, Delegate Tim Hugo and Sara Pomeroy for serving as our co-hosts.

This is only the beginning of our efforts in addressing this issue. I will continue to make the education of our families, friends and neighbors on human trafficking a legislative priority in order to ensure that our children will not become future victims of this violence.

Continuing the education effort is one way to combat this issue at a grassroots level and become more effective advocates against human sex trafficking.
Dangers of Distracted Driving and Texting While Driving Town Hall
Panelists At Texting While Driving Town Hall (from left to right): Lt. Rudy Landon, Tom Pecoraro, Janet Brooking, Delegate Comstock, Supervisor Suzanne Volpe
Thanks to Lt. Rudy Landon with the Loudoun County Sheriff's Office, Tom Pecoraro with I Drive Smart, Janet Brooking with Drive Smart Virginia and Algonkian Supervisor Suzanne Volpe for joining us for our Texting While Driving Town Hall in Potomac Falls on Tuesday, May 7th.
Countless dangerous and even deadly situations have occurred from this increasing problem. The Virginia Tech Transportation Institute found that texting while driving increased crash risk by 2300 percent. As of July 1, law enforcement officers will be empowered to stop a driver and immediately issue a citation to an individual who is texting while driving. The penalty issued would include $125 for the first offense and $250 for each offense thereafter.
Watch this video from our community forum to hear more safe driving tips, information on the new law and a recap of the General Assembly session relating to advocating for safe driving.
Delegate Barbara Comstock's Texting While Driving Town Hall (Potomac Falls, VA - 5/7/13)
Delegate Barbara Comstock's Texting While Driving Town Hall (Potomac Falls, VA - 5/7/13)
School Class Size Working Group Meeting with Virginia Board of Education President, David Foster

Our Working Group on Class Size that has met periodically had a meeting on Monday, May 13th with Virginia Board of Education President, Dave Foster. At the behest of this working group made up of parents of school children throughout the area, I introduced legislation this year to provide equity in class size across the county by changing the way the school district can average their class size from a division-wide county ratio to a school-wide ratio.

While the legislation did not pass this year, an Education subcommittee did submit questions to the Virginia Board of Education to clarify definitions on how class sizes are determined since the experience of many of these parents is that their child's class size often exceeds those presented as the official class sizes at schools on their official websites. Of course class size and the variations of class sizes throughout a county are determined by the School Board and local officials, but I will continue to work with these concerned parents to highlight the need for fairness in class size determinations throughout the county and to make sure that resources are more justly allocated throughout Fairfax and Loudoun counties.

Great Falls Day And Congratulations To Colvin Run Mill

We had gorgeous weather for Great Falls Day on Sunday May 5th. The Great Falls Historical Society hosted this event as a celebration of the listing of Georgetown Pike on the National Register of Historic Places. This is the only road in the nation that has been included on the list. Construction of the Georgetown Pike began in 1813 - exactly 200 years ago - and was completed in 1827.

I'm also pleased to report that Colvin Run Mill was recently awarded a $75,000 grant in the Partners in Preservation grant competition that ended on May 10th.

Colvin Run Mill was one of about two dozen finalists in the DC metro area historic preservation contest, which included public voting.

The $75,000 will be used, in part, to restore the 18th century grain elevator to working order. Partners in Preservation was a joint venture of American Express and the National Trust for Historic Preservation. The grand prize grant winner was the Washington National Cathedral in DC.

New Lyme Disease Test In Development At George Mason University

In recognition of May as Lyme Disease Awareness Month, I joined my colleagues Delegate Hugo and Delegate Ramadan for a meeting with researchers from George Mason University's Center for Applied Proteomics and Molecular Medicine (CAPMM) and business partner Ceres Nanoscience to learn more about a new technology that will dramatically improve detection of Lyme Disease.

Lead researcher and Mason Assistant Professor Dr. Alessandra Luchini, recently named as one of the "Brilliant 10" scientists under the age of 40 by Popular Science magazine, her team and their partners at Ceres Nanoscience have been dedicated to refining their work on a new technology called a Nanotrap that will dramatically improve detection of Lyme Disease at much earlier stages. Dr. Chip Petricoin, Co-Director of CAPMM and Director of Science at Ceres Nanoscience explained the Nanotrap as a "vacuum cleaner for infectious disease markers", able to "identify evidence of the disease when it is 2000 times smaller" than what can be identified with current testing processes. Dr. Lance Liotta, also co-director of CAPMM and Director of Science at Ceres Nanoscience, noted that use of the Nanotrap test will "dramatically reduce the false negatives of current testing processes and lead to earlier and greatly improved treatment outcomes for those suffering from Lyme Disease."

In the 2013 General Assembly Session, I sponsored legislation which aimed to improve citizen understanding of the weaknesses of current testing. The passage of House Bill 1933 is a great step in raising awareness about this terrible disease and the high incidence of patients receiving false negative tests. I have heard from many of my constituents about how they or someone in their life suffers from Lyme Disease. So often, they go untreated and undiagnosed for months and even years. I'm pleased that we were able to pass this bill which focuses on getting information about testing problems directly to patients so they can seek additional testing, if necessary, as well as appropriate treatment.

Last year, I passed a resolution to permanently designate May as Lyme Disease Awareness Month in Virginia. The resolution was passed by both the House of Delegates and the Senate unanimously and will help to raise awareness about this debilitating disease. In recognition of this resolution, last year the Loudoun County Board of Supervisors declared 2012 "Lyme Disease Awareness Year," created the Loudoun Lyme Disease Commission, and adopted a ten-point action plan to mitigate Lyme Disease.

"Taste of Asia" Event


On Friday, May 10th, we attended the Asian Chamber of Commerce's "Taste of Asia" event at the Boys & Girls Club in Fairfax. This event was a celebration of Asian heritage month which featured business networking, Asian cultural performance, games, Asian food tasting, tea tasting, and more.

Youth For Tomorrow "Burgundy and Gold" Banquet
Delegate Comstock with Kiersten and Bruce Allen, Washington Redskins General Manager, at the Burgundy and Gold Banquet.

Youth For Tomorrow, the Washington Redskin's Charitable Foundation, hosted their 24th Annual Burgundy and Gold Banquet on Wednesday, March 15th. It was a pleasure to join them and support providing a safe, healthy and compassionate environment for at-risk youth who have been abandoned, abused or otherwise alienated from family and community.

Founded by Joe Gibbs and under the leadership of Gary Jones for 30 years now, Youth For Tomorrow's mission is to provide these youth with the opportunity and motivation to focus their lives and develop their confidence, skills, intellectual ability, spiritual insight and moral integrity to become responsible and productive members of society. Youth For Tomorrow is also a great partner in the fight against human trafficking as the Foundation provides help to those who are victims of this heinous crime.

Upcoming Events:
3rd Annual Loudoun Lyme 5K Run/ Walk

On Sunday, May 19th National Capital Lyme Disease Association will be hosting their 3rd Annual Loudoun Lyme 5K Run/ Walk in Purcellville at Loudoun Valley High School. For more information about the event, click here.

NatCap Lyme will be honoring Dr. Jorge Arias, Environmental Health Supervisor of the Fairfax County Health Department among others at this event. An expert in vector-borne diseases, Dr. Arias directs the Fairfax County Disease Carrying Insects Program focusing on Lyme and West Nile virus. Dr. Arias is responsible for major contributions to the battle against Lyme Disease, including educational literature for both Fairfax and Loudoun Counties. My colleague, Senator Dick Black, and myself will also be recognized at this event for our work at the General Assembly and for our support of Lyme patient causes. I hope to see you there!

McLean Day

Join us for the McLean Community Center's (MCC) annual community festival McLean Day 2013: "Celebrating Our Hometown." on Saturday, May 18. McLean Day 2013 will be held from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. at Lewinsville Park, 1659 Chain Bridge Road. Admission is free.

For festival updates, driving directions, shuttle bus stop locations and a festival area map, visit: www.mcleancenter.org/special-events or call the center at 703-790-0123/TTY: 711. The center's telephone will be answered from 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on the day of the festival.

Viva Vienna Festival

The Rotary Club of Vienna sponsors the ViVa! Vienna! event, which celebrates the unity and strength of the Vienna community and honors Memorial Day. This event, a time of family fun and pleasure, serves as a major fund raising opportunity for the Rotary Club so that it may, in turn, provide support for charitable, educational and community groups.

ViVa! Vienna! is complete with amusement rides, food, crafts, vendors and entertainment - fun for all ages! Vendors include handcraft artisans, retail vendors, professionals, political parties and candidates, and community and non-profit organizations. 50,000 guests and over 300 vendors are expected to attend. The event will take place Saturday May 25th- Monday, May 27th from 10:00 a.m.- 10:00 p.m. For more information and festival updates, click here.

Save The Date
  • Every Friday- McLean Farmer's Market from 8:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. at Lewinsville Park, 1659 Chain Bridge Rd., McLean Virginia 2210
  • Every Saturday- Great Falls Farmer's Market from 9:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. at the Great Falls Village Green Day School, 790 Walker Rd., Great Falls, Virginia 22066
  • First Wednesday of Each Month- McLean Citizens Association Meetings at 8:00 p.m. at the McLean Community Center,1234 Ingleside Ave.,McLean, Virginia 22101
  • Second Tuesday of Each Month- Great Falls Citizens Association Meetings at 7:30 p.m. at the Grange, 9818 Georgetown Pike, Great Falls, Virginia 22066
  • Saturday, May 18- McLean Day 2013 from 10:30 a.m.- 5:00 p.m. at Lewinsville Park, 1659 Chain Bridge Road, McLean, Virginia 22101.
  • Saturday, May 18- Celebration of Virginia Foundation for the Humanities from 3:00 p.m.- 6:00 p.m. at the home of Michelle and Chris Olson, 6615 Georgetown Pike, McLean, Virginia 22102.
  • Sunday, May 19th- NatCap Lyme Loudoun Lyme Disease 5K- 1M Fun Run from 6:30 a.m.- 9:30 a.m. at Loudoun Valley High School, 340 N Maple Avenue, Purcellville VA 20132.
  • Sunday, May 19th- Synchrony Amadeus Orchestra Concert from 4:00 p.m.- 6:00 p.m. at Saint Luke Catholic Church, 7001 Georgetown Pike, McLean, VA 22101
  • Saturday, May 25th- Sterling Volunteer Fire Company 11th Annual 9-1-1 5K Fun Run from 7:30 a.m.- 9:30 a.m. at Lowes Island Community Center, 47620 Saulty Drive, Sterling, VA 20165.
  • Saturday, May 25th- Korean American Cultural Committee Bell Garden Celebration from 11:00 a.m.- 12:00 p.m. at Meadowlark Botanical Gardens, 9750 Meadowlark Gardens Court, Vienna, Virginia 22182.
  • Saturday, May 25th- Monday, May 27th- Viva Vienna Festival from 10:00 a.m.- 10:00 p.m. at 245 Maple Ave W, Vienna, VA 22180.
  • Sunday, May 26th- 4th Annual Mela- Regional Indian-American Event from 12:00 p.m.- 8:00 p.m. at Bull Run Regional Park, 7700 Bull Run Drive, Centreville, Virginia 20121.
  • Monday, May 27th- McLean American Legion Post 270 Memorial Day Ceremony and Reception
    at 11:00 a.m. at McLean High School, 1633 Davidson Road, McLean, Virginia 22101.
  • Monday, May 27th- Memorial Day Ceremony At Great Falls Freedom Memorial, at 11:00 a.m. at 9830 Georgetown Pike, Great Falls, Virginia 22066.

I try to be accessible to my constituents in as many ways as possible. For more information, please visit my website, www.delegatecomstock.com, where you can read my blog for up-to-date information on Virginia, or follow me on Facebook or Twitter. You can reach me by email at [email protected] or by phone at 703-772-7168. Please don't hesitate to contact me about issues that concern you.


Delegate Barbara Comstock

Paid for and authorized by Friends of Barbara Comstock.

Paid for by Friends of Barbara Comstock.