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35th House District candidates Holly Seibold and Monique Baroudi (courtesy Laura Goyer Photography, MP Photo Art)

Only a week after finalizing vote tallies from its last election, Fairfax County is gearing up to welcome back voters from several precincts for its next election.

Early voting will begin Wednesday (Nov. 23) to select a successor to Mark Keam, who resigned as delegate of Virginia’s 35th House District in September. A special election will be held Jan. 10, the day before the General Assembly convenes for its 2023 session.

The district encompasses Vienna, Oakton, Dunn Loring, most of Tysons, and Fair Oaks. Since Keam’s term doesn’t end until January 2024, this election will use the boundaries that existed prior to last year’s redistricting, which split the area into districts 11 and 12.

Eligible voters in 20 precincts will decide between BRAWS President Holly Seibold — who won the Democratic nomination in a caucus last month — and Oakton resident Monique Baroudi, who became the Republican nominee after another candidate withdrew before a scheduled canvass.

The House District 35 boundaries before redistricting (via Virginia Public Access Project)

Starting Wednesday, early voting will be available on weekdays from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the Office of Elections in the Fairfax County Government Center (12000 Government Center Parkway). The county will also begin mailing ballots to voters who’ve requested that permanently.

The deadline to apply for a mail absentee ballot in this election is Dec. 30. Requests can be submitted through the state’s online portal or in person at the county elections office.

“To return your cast ballot, you may hand deliver it to the Office of Elections or put it in the 24/7, secure drop box outside the Fairfax County Government Center,” the county’s news release said. “If returned by mail, ballots must be postmarked by Tuesday, Jan. 10 and received by the Office of Elections by noon on Friday, Jan. 13.”

In-person early voting will also be available at the Providence Community Center on two Saturdays (Dec. 31 and Jan. 7) from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The government center site will be closed on county holidays, including this Thursday and Friday (Nov. 24-25) for Thanksgiving. That means early voting will only be available for one day this week.

Other holiday closures include after noon on Dec. 23 and all day on Dec. 26 and Jan. 2.

Early voting will conclude at 5 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 7.

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An American Disposal truck in Fairfax County (staff photo by Matt Blitz)

Fairfax County will ask the Virginia General Assembly for more authority to fix its trash troubles, as complaints about American Disposal Services continue.

At Tuesday’s (Oct. 18) legislative committee meeting, the Board of Supervisors once again dove into the persisting problems with trash pickups by the private, contracted collectors that serve about 90% of residents and almost all businesses in the county.

Throughout this year, the county has received many complaints about the contractors’ performance, especially American Disposal, which cut back on pickups this spring.

In late September, the county signed a consent agreement with the company. According to Providence District Supervisor Dalia Palchik, the agreement obligates American Disposal to hire more drivers and customer service personnel, increase salaries, and credit customers for missed pick-ups, starting Jan. 1. It also imposes a $5,000 fine on the company.

Per Palchik’s newsletter, the contractor has until Dec. 31 to “make the necessary schedule modifications” and maintain adequate staff and equipment to resolve its service issues. Customers must be notified of any changes to their collections by that date as well.

FFXnow was unable to reach American Disposal for comment.

Meanwhile, the county is considering lobbying state lawmakers to ease restrictions on its ability to impose its own trash pick-up model.

“This surge in complaints, which account for approximately 86 percent of all waste collection complaints received by the County, has led to consideration of alternative solid waste management system models, and whether such alternatives could improve the quality and/or reliability of service delivery,” a staff report says.

One alternative would be to implement a franchising model, which Virginia law currently allows localities to do.

“Under a franchising model, the County would likely be divided into several different zones, and each zone would be served by a single collection company. Customers would pay for service based on County-negotiated rates,” the staff report notes.

However, the state code complicates the county’s ability to enact this model. Notably, if franchising ends up prohibiting a currently contracted company from continuing to service the county, the county either has to essentially wait five years to start franchising or pay the affected company a year’s worth of gross receipts.

“The code makes [franchising], quite frankly, impossible. It might as well be banned outright,” Braddock District Supervisor James Walkinshaw said Tuesday. “The five-year delayed implementation date, obviously, prevents anyone from doing it. That’s why no one in the Commonwealth has done it, to my knowledge.”

The code does have some exceptions, mainly for if a trash pick-up company is so inadequate at its job that it’s “threatening public health and safety” and is breaching the contract.

McKay asked the county legal team what would constitute a breach of contract, noting that an answer would probably have to come at a later date.

“Where do we think the line is where [it’s] threatening public health and safety?” McKay said. “[Are] we potentially getting near reaching that? If we have multiple consent agreements and trash laying out and it’s a public…health issue and they are obviously not fulfilling the agreement. It’s probably a pretty high bar, but we should know that if these problems persist.”

Per staff recommendation, the committee voted in support of asking the General Assembly to provide “flexibility” for a franchise model. This could mean wiping out or altering these “onerous requirements” to make it easier for the county to franchise trash service. Read More

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Holly Seibold, founder and president of the menstrual equity nonprofit BRAWS, prevailed in last week’s Democratic caucus for the next 35th House District delegate.

After three days of voting, the Fairfax County Democratic Committee (FCDC) announced Saturday evening (Oct. 8) that Seibold had won the party’s nomination over Providence District School Board Representative Karl Frisch by just 67 votes.

“I cannot thank the Democrats of District 35 enough for this tremendous honor,” Seibold said on social media. “I promise to make you proud in Richmond and fight for the Virginia values of equality, justice, and freedom.”

The 35th District seat — which represents Tysons, Vienna, Dunn Loring, Oakton and Fair Oaks — is open after longtime delegate Mark Keam resigned last month to take a job in the Biden administration. Keam had served in the House of Delegates for 13 years.

The FCDC opted to choose its nominee for Keam’s successor through an unassembled caucus, inviting Democratic voters in the district to cast their ballots in person on Saturday at Patrick Henry Library in Vienna, Oakton Elementary School, and the Kilmer Center near Dunn Loring.

Early voting was also available at the FCDC headquarters last Tuesday and Thursday (Oct. 4 and 6).

According to the final results, there were 2,356 ballots cast overall, including 401 early votes. Seibold received 1,210 votes to Frisch’s 1,143.

The two candidates put up a united front after the results were announced. Seibold thanked Frisch “for his kind words and for making me a better candidate,” while Frisch promised to support her in the special election on Jan. 10.

“Losing is a little easier to digest when it’s to someone as capable as @HollySeiboldVA,” he said on Twitter. “She will be a great Delegate. We have three months until the Special Election to fill @MarkKeam’s seat and I will do whatever I can to help her succeed.”

A Vienna resident since 2012 and former Fairfax County Public Schools teacher, Seibold started BRAWS in 2015 to help provide menstrual supplies and undergarments to those in need. Her advocacy resulted in Virginia now requiring schools to make free tampons and pads available to all students and ending its sales tax on tampons.

She told FFXnow last week that her priorities include fully funding schools, addressing learning loss and ensuring students “receive a world-class education” free from gun violence, taking action on climate change that creates new jobs and invests in the most vulnerable communities, protecting abortion rights, and expanding “economic resources to women and children in crisis.”

“Holly works day-in and day-out to make our community a better place for everyone,” FCDC Chair Bryan Graham said in a statement. “While our absentee Governor and his lackeys in the legislature attack public education, the LGBTQ+ community, environmental protections, and even democracy itself, we need candidates like Holly to lead the fight to protect the progress we’ve made and forge a path to move Virginia forward when we retake the House of Delegates next year.”

To select its nominee, the Fairfax County Republican Committee will hold a party canvass at its headquarters (4246 Chain Bridge Road) from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Nov. 5 — the Saturday before Election Day. No GOP candidates have been publicly announced yet.

Called by Speaker of the House Todd Gilbert on Sept. 8, the special election on Jan. 10 will take place the day before the General Assembly convenes for its 2023 session.

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Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Chair Jeff McKay (file photo)

Fairfax County deserves more local authority, Board of Supervisors Chairman Jeff McKay says, calling Virginia’s Dillon Rule “increasingly more intrusive” in day-to-day operations.

The Dillon Rule dictates that localities only have the authority to create laws, set guidelines, and wield power if the state expressly grants it to them.

However, McKay argues this system treats counties as so “unsophisticated” that they need the state to make decisions for them — an assumption that seems particularly outdated for a locality like Fairfax County, which is home to nearly 1.2 million people and an annual budget of $4.7 billion.

“It’s a…broken, inconsistent, and non-responsive system for our constituents that needs modernization,” McKay told FFXnow. “Every time we need something, we’ve got to go to Richmond and beg because most [Virginia] localities don’t need or want that authority. And that’s a problem.”

McKay told Axios D.C. last month that he wanted the county to have more control over its destiny, including the option to levy personal income taxes.

He calculated that Fairfax County only gets 23 cents for each dollar it pays in state taxes. While some disputed that exact calculation, McKay says the county sends enough revenue to the state that it should have more authority to determine how it’s generated.

I think the county should have the authority to levy any tax that they want and let their voters hold them accountable,” he said. “The state should not be telling them, ‘You can’t raise revenue this way or that way or any other way.'”

If allowed to do this, he would consider a personal income tax as a means to lower — or, even, eliminate — the real estate tax, which provides over $3 billion, or roughly 68% of the county’s annual revenue. He says it would be a fairer, more equitable, and less risky way of raising revenue.

The Dillon Rule’s restrictions on local authority go beyond taxes, hampering day-to-day operations of the county, McKay says, arguing that the “one-size-fits-all” mentality of governing no longer works in a state where counties are diverse in size, population, and budgets.

For instance, rewinding to 2020, McKay says he and other Northern Virginia leaders had to “compel” then-governor Ralph Northam to delay rolling back Covid restrictions in the region.

At the time, Fairfax County’s infection numbers were a lot closer to those in D.C. and Montgomery County than to Roanoke or smaller Virginia localities. Yet, while D.C. and suburban Maryland could keep their covid restrictions in place, Northern Virginia was initially on the same timeline as the rest of the Commonwealth.

“I didn’t have the same authority that they had to do what they were doing,” McKay said. “I was beholden to negotiating, in essence, with the governor about what was in the best interest of Fairfax County.”

McKay says the Dillon Rule is also a factor in the case of the Glasgow Middle School counselor who was arrested last year for a sex crime but stayed employed by Fairfax County Public Schools for months after.

“Another example of a challenge in my community that…fell through the cracks because of a lack of detail, lack of aggressiveness, and lack of awareness of what the Virginia standard or requirements are for localities reporting these incidents,” he said. Read More

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Holly Seibold and Karl Frisch are vying to become the Democratic nominee for Virginia’s 35th House District (courtesy Laura Goyer Photography, Friends of Karl Frisch)

As early voting for the Congressional midterms continues, Democrats in Virginia’s 35th House District have a critical state race competing for their attention.

After longtime delegate Mark Keam resigned in early September, the Fairfax County Democratic Committee will hold a caucus on Saturday (Oct. 8) to select the its nominee for the vacated seat, which represents Tysons, Vienna, Dunn Loring and Oakton.

Competing for the nomination are Providence District School Board Representative Karl Frisch and Holly Seibold, founder and president of the nonprofit BRAWS.

Though the special election won’t be until Jan. 10, no Republicans have entered the race yet, and the district has gone blue in every election since 2003, suggesting that whoever wins this Saturday will be the new delegate.

The Democratic caucus will be unassembled, meaning voters can cast their ballot and leave. It will take place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at three different locations:

  • The Kilmer Center cafeteria (8102 Wolftrap Road, Vienna)
  • The Oakton Elementary School cafeteria (3000 Chain Bridge Road, Oakton)
  • The Patrick Henry Library meeting room (101 Maple Avenue East, Vienna)

Early voting will also be available at the FCDC headquarters at 8500 Executive Park Avenue, Suite 402, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. tomorrow (Tuesday) and from 5-8 p.m. on Thursday (Oct. 6).

All voters must fill out a certification form and sign a statement saying they’re “a registered voter, a Democrat, and that they do not intend to support a candidate opposed to the Democratic nominee in the next ensuing election,” according to the caucus rules.

Whoever wins the special election will serve the remainder of Keam’s term, which concludes in January 2024.

The candidates: Karl Frisch

Elected to the Fairfax County School Board in 2019, Frisch previously worked as executive director of the consumer watchdog organization Allied Progress, a senior fellow for the nonprofit Media Matters for America, and a Democratic staffer on the House of Representatives’ Committee on Rules.

The first openly gay person on the county’s school board, Frisch’s tenure has included the approval of new protections for transgender and gender-expansive students — a regulation currently being threatened by the state — and the naming of Mosaic Elementary School, previously known as Mosby Woods. Read More

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Mark Keam served as delegate for Virginia’s 35th House District for 13 years (courtesy Mark Keam)

Mark Keam’s 13-year tenure in the Virginia General Assembly has come to a close.

After accepting a position in the Office of National Travel and Tourism in the Biden administration, Keam announced on Tuesday (Sept. 6) that he has submitted his resignation as delegate for the 35th House District, which includes Tysons, Vienna, Dunn Loring, Oakton and Fair Oaks.

Vying to succeed him in a special election set for Jan. 10 — one day before the legislature convenes for its 2023 session — will be Providence District School Board Representative Karl Frisch and BRAWS Executive Director Holly Seibold. Candidates can file to run until 5 p.m. on Nov. 14.

In a brief interview with FFXnow, Keam reflected on legislative highlights from his six-and-a-half terms in office, the increased diversity of the General Assembly, and his advice for the district’s next delegate.

(Editor’s note: The following interview has been lightly edited for length and clarity.)

What are the accomplishments you’re most proud of?

I’ve been very, very honored and fortunate to work on many, many issues…I’ve been able to pass, last time I counted, it was about 120 bills that I drafted myself, either under my name or something I drafted was incorporated into somebody else’s bill.

Among them, I think the one that stands out the most to me in terms of significance and [that] I feel very proud of is the Virginia Environmental Justice Act. It requires Virginia state government agencies, as they’re issuing permits and authorizations, to look at the environmental justice impact, not just in terms of how much it’s going to cost and the economics, but also who’s going to be harmed and who’s going to be benefitted from something where we’re allowing — let’s say, for example, a pipeline to go through a neighborhood or we’re building something that’s going to create smog and pollution. Because unfortunately, a lot of environmental impact, the worst part falls on people of color and minorities, poor people, uneducated people who don’t have a voice in our government.

…Another one I’m very proud of supporting and pushing through after years and years of trying is the Solar Freedom Act, which means that we allow now solar energy to be provided a lot more accessibly for families and homes and businesses and local governments, so that was something that I was very proud to do.

I think the other thing I was really, really proud to accomplish is I worked for years to get rid of the taxes on tampons and personal hygiene products, because I think that’s so discriminatory for women to have to pay taxes on tampons and menstrual pads. Guys never have to do that, so I always thought that was an unfair thing, and after working for years and years, I put the first bill in in 2016, and after working for five years, Governor Youngkin’s budget actually gets rid of that now. We were able to accomplish that, so I feel good about that. Read More

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Mark Keam has resigned as delegate for Virginia’s 35th House District after 13 years (courtesy Mark Keam)

(Updated at 1:30 p.m. on 9/7/2022) Del. Mark Keam (D-35) has stepped down from his seat in the Virginia General Assembly after representing Tysons, Vienna, and Oakton for over a decade.

In an email message to supporters, Keam announced this morning (Tuesday) that he has submitted his resignation to Speaker of the House Todd Gilbert in order to work in President Joe Biden’s administration.

“While I have loved every moment of the past thirteen years as your state legislator, I have decided to continue my public service in another capacity,” Keam said in the message. “…Returning to federal service will require me to work full time, all year long, which is why I submitted my resignation to the Speaker of the House who will soon call a special election to fill the vacancy until my term expires in January 2024.”

Keam will join the Department of Commerce and the Office of National Travel and Tourism in the International Trade Administration, he told FFXnow. His career has included past legal work for the federal government.

Contenders for the now-vacant 35th District seat are already stepping up for a special election that Speaker of the House Del. Todd Gilbert announced will be held on Jan. 10, just one day before the General Assembly starts its 2023 session.

Karl Frisch, who represents Providence District on the Fairfax County School Board, announced his candidacy this morning, positioning himself as “a progressive fighter” who will oppose Republican Gov. Glenn Youngkin’s agenda.

“We need someone who will stand up to Governor Youngkin and the far-right — someone who will work every day to protect our world-class public schools, defend reproductive freedom, build an economy that works for everyone, prevent gun violence, heal our planet, and preserve our democracy,” Frisch said.

Holly Seibold, founder and executive director of the nonprofit Bringing Resources to Aid Women’s Shelters (BRAWS), confirmed to FFXnow that she will also compete for Keam’s seat in the upcoming special election.

(Correction: This article initially said Seibold was going to challenge Keam in a primary next year, but Seibold clarified that she had submitted her candidacy after learning that Keam was going to step down and she got his support to join the race for the open delegate seat.)

Originally elected to the House of Delegates in 2009, Keam was the first Asian-born immigrant and first Korean American to serve in the General Assembly. He helped found the legislative chamber’s first Asian American and Pacific Islander Caucus last year.

During his 13 years as a state lawmaker, Keam made environmental issues a top focus, authoring a bill that established a state grant program to fund electric school buses. Other notable pieces of legislation include a requirement that public schools provide free menstural supplies and the creation of a special identification card for individuals who are blind or visually impaired.

Most recently, Keam easily won reelection to a seventh term last November after facing a challenger for the first time since 2013.

The Fairfax County Democratic Committee thanked Keam for “more than a decade of public service.”

“While we wait to hear when the special election to replace Del. Keam will happen, FCDC is formalizing its plans to operate an open and fair process to choose our nominee,” FCDC Chair Bryan Graham said in a statement. “We will ensure that a Democrat remains representing the people of Dunn Loring, Tysons, Vienna, and Oakton in the current 35th House District.”

Under Virginia’s new redistricting maps, which were approved by the state Supreme Court in December, much of the 35th District — including Tysons, Vienna, Dunn Loring, and part of Oakton — will be subsumed into a new 12th House District that extends south into Mantua down to Little River Turnpike.

The new district will take effect with the 2023 general election.

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Morning Notes

Sun shines through tree leaves in Vienna (staff photo by Angela Woolsey)

Man Dies After Fairfax City Crash — “A 32-year-old Maryland man died from injuries he received when the motorcycle he was riding Monday afternoon collided with an SUV on Chain Bridge Road in Fairfax City, according to a police release.” [Patch]

Suspect in Fatal Springfield Stabbing Extradited — “This evening, Jose Heber Hernandez Mejia was extradited back to Fairfax County from South Carolina. He’s charged with 2nd degree murder for the July 17 domestic-related stabbing in the 5200 block of Rolling Rd. Hernandez Mejia was held on no bond.” [FCPD/Twitter]

Arrests Made in Child Solicitation Sting — “Six men ranging in ages from 26 to 43 were arrested by Fairfax County Police as part of an online sting to identify and apprehend predators seeking to exploit children using the internet, according to a police brief.” [Patch]

Food Stolen From Mount Vernon Daycare — “Officers were called to the KinderCare at 4287 Buckman Road early Monday morning for a burglary that occurred over the weekend. When officers learned thousands of dollars worth of food was stolen from the center, they quickly jumped into action to ensure the kids wouldn’t go hungry by purchasing breakfast, lunch, and afternoon snacks.” [FCPD/Facebook]

Virginia Sees Bump in Pro-Choice License Plates — “Pro-life and pro-choice license plates aren’t new to Virginia: The commonwealth has issued ‘Choose Life’ plates since 2009 and ‘Trust Women. Respect Choice.’ since 2010…Since the US Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade in June, though, more people are buying pro-choice plates.” [Washingtonian]

Fire Department Enlists Starbucks for Backpack Drive — “#FCFRD is partnering with select local @Starbucks stores to collect backpacks for underprivileged children. Backpacks will be given to local schools in #FairfaxCounty for distribution. Backpacks will be collected until August 12. Please donate a new backpack today!” [FCFRD/Twitter]

Metro Seeks to Add More Trains — Metro is seeking permission to operate more of the 7000-series trains that were sidelined late last year after a derailment in Arlington, according to the Washington Metrorail Safety Commission. The transit agency is currently permitted to run 64 cars, or eight trains, per day, as long as their wheels are inspected daily. [The Washington Post]

State Legislators Consider Changes to Recall Process — “Activists in Virginia are increasingly turning to the state’s court-driven recall process to try to take out their frustrations on local officials they feel have done something wrong…The fact that the recalls almost never work doesn’t seem to be stopping the trend, but it’s causing some lawmakers to rethink a system that empowers judges, not voters, to decide when politicians deserve to be kicked out of office early.” [Virginia Mercury/Inside NoVA]

“American Idol” Winner to Take Wolf Trap Stage — “Her victory on Season 3 of ‘American Idol’ made her a household name. Now, Fantasia Barrino is bringing her signature sound to Wolf Trap in Virginia on Aug. 19.” [WTOP]

It’s Wednesday — Rain starting in the afternoon. High of 88 and low of 77. Sunrise at 6:19 am and sunset at 8:11 pm. [Weather.gov]

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Beyond/Hello is opening a new medical cannabis dispensary along Richmond Highway (staff photo by Matt Blitz)

The Fairfax County area’s first medical cannabis dispensaries are almost ready to make their debuts.

Beyond/Hello, one of four companies allowed to sell cannabis in Virginia and owned by Flordia-based Jushi, is opening a location in Huntington along Richmond Highway, as FFXnow reported in April.

That store is set to start serving patients “within two to four weeks,” pending approval from the Virginia Board of Pharmacy, Chief Commercial Director Trent Wolveck told FFXnow.

The new dispensary will be located next to a car dealership at 5902 Richmond Highway. Set back a bit from the road, the building previously housed the Great American Steak & Buffet Company, which appears to have closed in 2020.

“This location was selected due to the proximity to the Old Town Alexandria and the 495 Beltway,” Wolveck said by email. “Also, our preference in Virginia is for stand alone single tenant properties. We get that here, along with over 90 parking spaces for patients.”

Construction on the business appears to be mostly completed, with a glossy black, stylized sign in front.

Beyond/Hello’s Fairfax City dispensary is also on track to open within the next six to 10 weeks, barring state approval, Wolveck says. It will be at 10521 Fairfax Blvd. in a former Rite Aid building.

Wolveck says the location held a similar appeal as the Richmond Highway one, since it’s a standalone building with a large number of parking spots. The proximity to major roads and highways also was attractive.

“The property sits on highly trafficked Leesburg Pike and provides the best signage and branding opportunity of all of our Virginia locations given its position at the intersection of Leesburg Pike and Chain Bridge [Road],” Wolveck noted. “The Fairfax location is also just two minutes from I-66.”

Earlier this month, it became easier for Virginia residents to obtain medical cannabis. A new state law went into effect July 1, removing the need for patients to register with the Commonwealth to make a purchase. Now, patients simply need written certification from a licensed practitioner.

This loosening of regulations is expected to supercharge Virginia’s medical cannabis industry. As of April, only about 0.5% of the Commonwealth’s nearly 9 million residents were registered as medical cannabis patients. That’s far below the national average of 2% and Maryland’s rate of 2.5%.

Medical cannabis sales may catch fire in the coming months, but recreational sales remain banned in Virginia. While it is legal to possess and grow marijuana in the Commonwealth, an effort to create infrastructure for retail sales failed in the Virginia General Assembly earlier this year.

For the moment, cannabis retail sales won’t be allowed in Virginia until Jan. 1, 2024.

Beyond/Hello is continuing its expansion across Northern Virginia. The company is legally allowed to operate six dispensaries in Virginia, with its first two already open in Manassas and Sterling.

An Arlington dispensary is set to open in Clarendon along Wilson Blvd by the end of the year, while a Woodbridge location is aiming for an early 2023 start date.

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Virginia State Capitol in Richmond (file photo)

A slew of new laws are taking effect in Virginia tomorrow (July 1), including a ban on police ticket quotas, a requirement for licenses to deliver alcohol, and a new allowance for hunting on Sundays.

The 2022 General Assembly session finally wrapped this month with the approval of a new budget. All in all, about 800 laws were passed by the legislative body and signed into law by Gov. Glenn Youngkin this year, including some from local lawmakers.

A number of those new laws are going into effect tomorrow, July 1.

Here are eight that could impact county residents:

License to deliver alcoholic beverages

The identical bills HB 426 and SB 254 both create a new license for deliveries of alcoholic beverages purchased by consumers. The new law extends the pandemic-era “cocktail to-go” policy while addressing several safety issues.

Businesses will now have to obtain a third-party license, costing between $2,500 and $7,500 depending on company size. The license requires delivery employees to take an online course on age verification, food requirements and responsible drinking.

HB 426 was sponsored by Del. David Bulova (D-37), who represents Fairfax City and parts of Fairfax County.

School principals must report misdemeanors 

HB 4 and SB 36 require school principals to report most misdemeanors to law enforcement, including certain kinds of assault, battery, threats made to school officials, stalking, and alcohol and drug use. Before, principals only had to report acts that constitute a felony offense.

Both bills were introduced by Republicans and were a legislative priority of Youngkin, but did have some bipartisan support, including Del. Ken Plum (D-36), Del Mark Sickles (D-43), Sen. Jennifer Boysko (D-33), and Sen. Adam Ebbin (D-30).

No more police arrest or ticket quotas 

HB 750 bans police departments and sheriff’s offices from imposing formal or informal arrest or ticket quotas. This particularly affects the issuing of traffic violations, which have long been unpopular with both police and drivers. In some jurisdictions, quotas have been used as a barometer for job performance.

The bill received unanimous support in both the House of Delegates and the state Senate. Read More

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