The Leesburg Town Council last week approved an amendment to the parking ordinance that town officials say will help pay for the planning, design and construction of a new parking facility in the Historic District.

Under the old ordinance, developers in the Historic District were required to provide off-street parking. To prevent developers from attempting to remove old buildings to provide such parking, a $1,600 parking fee for every needed parking space will be paid to the town. According to chief planner Martha Semmes, the funds collected, while they won't guarantee a parking space, will be used to pay for a new parking facility in the downtown area.

The fee, which may change as construction costs increase, must be paid in full before a zoning permit can be issued, Semmes said. It cannot be refunded even if a developer's parking needs change.

The Bluemont Concert Series, presented every Sunday rain or shine, either on the steps of the Old Courthouse in Leesburg or inside the St. James Episcopal Church one block north from the courthouse, will offer Appalachian music this weekend. Featuring Janette Carter of Virginia's famous singing Carter family and instrumentalist John McCutcheon, the music will begin at 7 p.m. The two will sing and play dance tunes, ballads and hymns "from the heart of Appalachian life," according to concert executive director Peter Dunning. For information, call Dunning at 777-0574.