Take Metro or I-66? Each had its own issues during Wednesday morning’s rush

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Two modes of transportation gave commuters headaches during the height of the morning rush in Northern Virginia.

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Virginia lawmakers look to lower country clubs’ tax bills

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — The Virginia General Assembly is set to provide relief for private country clubs unhappy with their local property tax bills.

Lawmakers are advancing legislation that would force Arlington County to lower the tax bills of Washington Golf and Country Club and Army Navy Country Club.

Supporters of the legislation say the county is unfairly taxing the clubs at rates significantly higher than in other Northern Virginia jurisdictions.

But opponents say Arlington’s taxes are reasonable for its prime location and state lawmakers should not intrude on a local tax dispute.

The GOP-controlled General Assembly is often at odds with Arlington, one of the state’s wealthiest and most liberal jurisdictions.

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Stafford Co. zoning board: huge Confederate flag can stay

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WASHINGTON — A huge Confederate flag can continue flying 80 feet above Interstate 95 in Stafford County after officials dismissed an appeal to have it considered unlawful.

Stafford County’s Board of Zoning Appeals declined to consider a request to have the flag declared an unlawfully large sign on Tuesday.

NBC4 reports the board members decided the petitioners did not have legal standing to make the request because they don’t live nearby.

Clark Leming represents Patricia Joshi and Thomas Jones, who brought the appeal to the board. He said the flag affects his clients’ quality of life.

“It’s a threat and it’s intimidating,” Leming said.

The lawyer also said the owner of the property on which the flag is planted demonstrated racial bias, and the group leasing the land supports white supremacists.

If the board had taken the case, however, the flag’s owners might have argued that it is exempt from a local rule that limits sign size because it is the symbol of a state.

But Leming said the Confederacy is no longer a state, and it should not be protected by zoning rules.

“We don’t believe that the Confederacy is a geopolitical entity under the meaning of the ordinance,” Leming said.

And even if the Confederacy were a state, Leming said the well-known flag flown under Robert E. Lee was not one of the three flags officially used by the Confederate States Of America.

Leming said he may ask Stafford Circuit Court to force the Board of Zoning Appeals to consider his clients’ complaint.

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