Local Leads: 1/28/2009

News you need to know

The following stories have been hand-selected by the Assignment Desk at News4:

"When it comes to the weather, folks in Washington don't seem to be able to handle things." President Obama, you're not in Chicago anymore. Shortly before a meeting with business leaders on the economy at the White House, Obama said he wanted to make an unrelated comment to the press. In a slightly amused tone, he noted this his daughters' school, Sidwell Friends, was canceled today because of a snow and ice storm that hit Washington. (Washington Post)

Virginia Tech today said it has created an emergency loan fund for students and families buffeted by the recession. A pool of $500,000 will be made available immediately to the university's Office of University Scholarships and Financial Aid, the university said this morning. The loan fund, called The Horizons Program, will be in addition to other financial aid resources already available such as the Presidential Scholarship Initiative, Funds for the Future, endowed need and merit based scholarships or other state and federal programs. (Richmond Times Dispatch)

Late last night, the school board in Loudoun County, where the recession might be having a greater effect on teachers' wallets than in any other Washington area jurisdiction, approved a budget of $747 million that would freeze teacher salaries. (Washington Post)

It was Jan. 13, a Tuesday evening, when parishioners at the Sts. Peter and Paul Antiochian Orthodox Church on River Road first noticed the graffiti. It was scrawled in blue spray paint on a back entryway to the church -- according to officials there, a dimly lit area that would make it an easy target for vandals.  Written across the door was a Star of David and the words "Israel forever - Arabs never."  The incident has shocked congregants at the Potomac church, which draws many parishioners who are of Middle Eastern descent. While the services are conducted in English, much of the chanting is in Greek or Arabic. (Gazette)

The housing industry saw a glimpse of hope in December as home sales rose 6.5 percent nationwide, compared to a year earlier. For all of 2008, however, home sales were down 13 percent, according to the National Association of Realtors. The road ahead is still unsure as consumer confidence fell this month and fears of job cuts and other economic crises continue. (Frederick News Post)

A Senate committee yesterday approved a bill that would charge traffic violators an extra $10 fee to help gas up police cars. The bill, from Sen. Richard Stuart, R-Westmoreland, would allow localities, if they choose, to charge $10 per traffic ticket. That money would go to pay for gas for the local police or sheriff's department.  (Free Lance Star)

The D.C. area is getting its first significant snowfall of the season this week. But one local family has had snow in its backyard since November. Joey Chlanda, 16, of Broadlands loves snowboarding but says getting to a ski resort is quite a road trip.  "The closest one is like an hour, hour and a half away," he says.  (WTOP.com)

Contact Us