Hello? Social Security Calling ….

Currently, the top scam in the region is a prerecorded voice that advises you that there are problems with your Social Security account. You are told to press #1 to speak to an agent.

The agent will ask you for your SS Number.  The agent will tell you that you are in serious trouble, and you must deposit money immediately to avoid arrest.  He will direct you to go to CVS and purchase a $400 money card.  And to not speak to anyone about it.

You are to return home and wait for his call.  You will read the numbers on the card. With those numbers, the $400 is now in his hands.  He will become more friendly, ask questions about your job, income, family, where you live, where you bank, etc.  He will wish you good day, and assure you that your case will turn out fine.  Don’t worry.

With your SS# and many details about you, he now has your identity.  Your financial problems are about to really begin.

When Social Security calls, just hang up and save yourself from real trouble.


Driverless Cars Coming Soon

On June 25, Fairfax County Board of Supervisors approved a joint project with Dominion Energy for an autonomous, or self-driving, electric shuttle in the Merrifield area.

The shuttle will be free, and run between the Dunn Loring Metro station and the Mosaic District. The exact route and operational target date was not determined. The schedule will be dependent on the federal approval process. VDOT approved a $250,000 grant for the pilot, and Fairfax County will provide $50,000

The shuttle will be electrically powered. A press release from the county states, “Fairfax County aims to be at the forefront of innovation by testing this smart technology for economic and environmental benefits, operational efficiencies and as a first and last mile travel option connecting people from Metrorail stations to employment, activity centers and residential communities.”

New Maple Avenue Development

A four story mixed use development is in the works for 380 Maple Avenue W.  This parcel is one block east of an approved redevelopment on the present locations of the Wolftrap Motel and Tequilla Grande restaurant.

The building would have 74 units of residential space, and 7500 square feet of retail shops on the ground floor.  The design is still subject to modifications, and more architectural renderings can be found HERE.

The development was approved by Town Council on June 17, under MAC Zoning Rules.  However that decision was rescinded on July 1 due to concerns about street widths, compliance with new state laws, and procedural questions.  A proposal by Councilman Pasha Majdi to have a joint meeting with Planning and Zoning on July 15 was approved.

Another Way to Go

Vienna is studying a pilot program to introduce motorized scooters and bikes on a shared rental basis. The program was discussed at a June 10 Town Council work session, however it has not yet been formalized in a regular Council meeting.

A new Virginia law on the so-called dockless mobility devices (or simply “dockless”) effective this month, allows localities to regulate the operation of these devices. Dockless refers to the fact that the device has no fixed home.  It is picked up and dropped off at locations prearranged through use of a cellphone app.

Dockless is catching on big across the country. Locally, Montgomery County, DC, Arlington County and the City of Alexandria have had it for a few years, and Fairfax City just launched a pilot program last week.

If a pilot program is approved in Vienna, the Public Works Department would be responsible for managing it. More discussion is scheduled for September.

The Crier is Back!

We are on line again after a complete format and software change to make The Crier “Mobile Friendly.  This means that the web site will look presentable on a laptop, a tablet, or most importantly, on your cell phone.

Actually, the presentation is optimized for cellphone viewing, since this is the wave of the future.  Most people by far now use their phone to catch up on news.

Here are some tips on viewing the new Crier:

If you see the photo of the Westwood golf course, you are on the Home Page.  If you want to immediately return there from anywhere on the site, simply click the little cartoon of the Crier ringing his bell, usually at the bottom of the page.

Below the golf course are the beginnings of new stories.  Click Read More to see the rest of the story.  As new stories are added, older ones will automatically be sent to the archives, but will be accessible by clicking Older Posts at the bottom of the page.

Above the golf course are the major links to other items of interest to Westbriar Crier readers:

Click About Us to learn about our organization with the help of other links in the blue box on that page.

Click News to fully open up all stories, both current and archived.  Over 100 selected Crier stories are sorted by original publishing date. The farther you scroll down, the farther into the past you go. Just hit View Older Stories when you come to the bottom of each archive page.

Click Links to open up a random assortment of links which may be of interest.  This is a work in progress.  Three at the top will take you to the websites of Vienna, Hunter Mill District, and Fairfax County.

Beyond that, you can take part in the content.  Any Westbriar member may have their business advertised for free.  Have a teenager interested in raking leaves or babysitting?  Do you have a favorite restaurant nearby that you believe others would like to know about? Let us know.

Click Listserv for instructions on enrolling in Westbriar’s listserver and why it is good.  Of course if you are reading this, you are likely already enrolled.

Click Nextdoor for instructions on enrolling in a great two way neighborhood social media.  Very popular, handy for lots of news, and even throwing a virtual yard sale.

If you are seeing the old familiar Crier, it is because your computer has stored the images.  In that case, you will need to “Clear the Cache.”

Let us know your thoughts and suggestions on the new Crier.

John                  703-319-0840

p.s.:  Story ideas and contributions are also most welcome.



Alcorn Wins Dem Primary

  Cathy Hudgins

Walter Alcorn won the Democratic Primary election on June 11 for the position of Hunter Mill Supervisor. All of Vienna lies within the Hunter Mill District boundaries.  Our present Supervisor, Catherine “Cathy” Hudgins announced her retirement after serving five four-year terms


The Fairfax Chairman of the Board of Supervisors, Sharon Bulova, also announced her retirement last year after more than thirty years service to Fairfax County.  The winner of the Chairman’s race is Jeff McKay, who is presently Supervisor of the Lee District, which is located in the Franconia area.