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Virginia ends year with $585 million surplus

Virginia ended the 2013 budget year with a $585 million surplus, Gov. Robert F. McDonnell (R) said in an address to the financial committees of the Virginia General Assembly.

The total includes $264.3 million in tax collections above initial estimates and $320.7 million in savings from agency budgets, according to the governor’s office.

“This joint achievement is remarkable when one considers the difficult economic conditions we worked through together,” he said in his Monday address.

Most of the surplus cash will be placed in state reserve funds, including a fund for addressing potential federal budget cuts; $134 million will be directed to higher education and other areas mandated by the state budget bill.

Fire and Rescue receives $3.1 million grant

The Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department is receiving a $3.1 million federal grant to enhance firefighter and emergency medical staffing, U.S. Rep. Gerry Connolly’s office announced.

The grant awarded by the Federal Emergency Management Agency will provide funding for 19 positions. Fairfax County applied for the funding under FEMA’s Staffing for Adequate Fire & Emergency Response grants program, SAFER.

The grants, created by Congress, are aimed at helping fire departments increase or maintain the number of trained, “front line” firefighters available in their communities and comply with staffing, response, and operational standards established by the National Fire Protection Agency, Connolly said in a Monday news release.

Dunn Loring parking garage opens Monday

A new 1,400-space parking garage at Dunn Loring Metro Station is set to open Monday, the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority said. The garage replaces the station’s existing surface parking lot, which will close so that a second parking garage can be built there.

When the second phase of the garage construction is completed in late 2014, there will be a 50 percent increase in parking capacity, said Patrick Schmitt, Metro’s director of parking.

The garage was built by Mill Creek Residential as part of a joint development project and will be operated by Metro. Existing parking rates ($4.75 on weekdays, free on weekends) will not change, the agency said.

‘National Dog Day’ features pool party, games and fee waiver

The Fairfax County Animal Shelter will be celebrating National Dog Day for the first time this weekend with a special adoption event. The shelter has more than 25 dogs available for adoption and will waive fees on dog adoptions this weekend.

The festivities will take place 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday at the shelter, 4500 West Ox Road in Fairfax. The event will also feature a dog pool party, free training consultation with a certified trainer, tours of the newly renovated animal shelter, and games and activities for children.