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Morning Notes

A hot summer day at The Boro in Tysons (staff photo by Angela Woolsey)

What Was Behind Tuesday’s Storms — “Hundreds of trees were toppled and hundreds of thousands of people lost power Tuesday afternoon and evening as three storm complexes roared across the Washington region. The storms were fueled by hot and humid air that surged into the region, and were powered and sustained by strong high-altitude winds along an approaching cold front.” [Capital Weather Gang]

Firefighter Charged in Fairfax County Armed Robbery — “A D.C. firefighter has been arrested and charged with robbery after police say he brandished a gun and took someone’s property in Fairfax County, Virginia. Fairfax County Police said the robbery happened in May” [WTOP]

Police Investigate Dunkin’ Donuts Burglaries — Fairfax County and Alexandria City police are investigating at least three burglaries of Dunkin’ Donuts in Springfield, Belle Haven and Potomac Yard. The incidents all occurred during the morning of July 7, but police haven’t confirmed whether they were committed by the same people. [ALXnow]

Fairfax County Top in State for Population Growth — “In the last 50 years, Fairfax County saw the largest population increase in Virginia. During that same time, Norfolk saw the largest population decline…Mark Mather at the Population Reference Bureau says the next 50 years are not going to have the same trends.” [WVTF]

Same-Day Voter Registration Coming — “Same-day voter registration is taking effect in the state in time for the congressional midterms in November, a significant shift from the way Virginia elections have worked in the past…The new law will allow voters to fill out a registration form and cast a ballot after that deadline, up to and including Election Day.” [Virginia Mercury]

Food Drive Planned in West Springfield — “@MoveInterstate will be hosting a #FillATruck food drive at their #Springfield HQ located at 5801 Rolling Road, from 07/18-07/29. All donations will be donated to Ecumenical Community Helping Others (ECHO) and will help families in the #FairfaxCounty community.” [Supervisor Penny Gross/Twitter]

Langley HS Alum Coaches GMU Volleyball — “Years later, when receiving a second opportunity to join the George Mason University women’s volleyball team, Megan Shiffett Bachmann jumped at the chance and accepted. The 2008 Langley High School graduate recently was named the new head women’s coach of the Division I Mason program.” [Sun Gazette/Inside NoVA]

Park Authority Names Top Volunteers — “The Fairfax County Park Authority will honor 21 individual volunteers named 2022 Outstanding Volunteers and selected by their peers from across the park system…Approximately 4,000 volunteers give of their time and talent annually and take on a multitude of tasks.” [FCPA]

Tysons IT Consultant to Help Startups — “Booz Allen Hamilton has launched a venture capital unit that aims to help young companies speed the development of technologies used by the federal government…Booz Allen Ventures LLC will invest $100 million over five years in firms developing artificial intelligence, machine learning, cybersecurity and defense technologies, the company said.” [Washington Business Journal]

It’s Thursday — Partly cloudy throughout the day. High of 86 and low of 72. Sunrise at 5:56 am and sunset at 8:35 pm. [Weather.gov]

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Morning Notes

Gum Springs celebrates Juneteenth with a Community Day on June 18 (staff photo by Matt Blitz)

Fairfax County Holds Primary Today — It’s primary day for voters in the 8th Congressional District, which now includes McLean, Bailey’s Crossroads, Annandale, and the Route 1 corridor in Fairfax County. With the Republican nominee already set, there is only a Democratic contest between incumbent Rep. Don Beyer and challenger Victoria Virasingh. [Fairfax County Office of Elections]

Man Dies in Oakton Crash — An 18-year-old driver died on Sunday (June 19) after losing control of his car while driving south on Fox Mill Road and hitting a tree near Bronzedale Drive. A juvenile passenger was taken to the hospital with injuries not considered life-threatening. Detectives believe speed was a factor in the crash, which resulted in the fifth non-pedestrian fatality of the year. [FCPD]

Drowned Man Remains Hospitalized — A 29-year-old man who drowned while swimming in Difficult Run Stream in McLean on Sunday is still in life-threatening condition. According to police, the man became submerged and was pulled out of the water by friends when he didn’t resurface. Fire and Rescue personnel found him about a quarter mile away from Georgetown Pike on a nearby trail. [FCPD]

Report Finds Discrimination by Housing Providers — “A fair housing test conducted by The Fairfax County Office of Human Rights, in partnership with The Equal Rights Center, showed ‘discernable differences’ between housing providers’ treatment of white and minority testers. The results also showed that ‘certain housing providers lack the training to provide the same level of treatment to Deaf individuals as they do to hearing individuals.'” [Inside NoVA]

Tysons West Vehicle Pursuit Leads to Arrest — A male juvenile allegedly “verbally threatened the victim” in the 1500 block of Cornerside Blvd on Jun 12. The juvenile attempted to drive away, striking two vehicles, before an officer stopped him using the controversial precision immobilization technique. The juvenile was arrested, and two people were treated for non-life-threatening injuries. [FCPD]

Springfield Trader Joe’s Looking to Move — Trader Joe’s is in talks to take over the roughly 24,000-square-foot Whole Foods Market at Old Keene Mill Shopping Center, suggesting that the new Whole Foods under construction at Springfield Plaza will be a relocation. The space would be larger than Trader Joe’s current 10,673-square-foot store next to the new Giant in Springfield Plaza. [Washington Business Journal]

Bank Plans Relocation From Herndon to Tysons — Part of a larger branding overhaul, Forbright Bank is moving its Herndon branch at 150 Elden Street to 1600 Tysons Blvd., a 13-story office building adjacent to Tysons Galleria. The Herndon location is the company’s only Virginia location among five branches in the region. [Washington Business Journal]

Fairfax County Police Helicopter Appears at Smithsonian Event — “Saturday, our helicopter was on display at the National Air & Space Museum’s Annual Innovations in Flight Event. 50+ aircraft fly in from around the region for this special day. Pilots Mountjoy & Edgerton greeted community members as they got a glimpse into Fairfax 1.” [FCPD/Twitter]

County Partners on Older Adult Activities — “Arlington County, Fairfax County, Prince William County, the Town of Vienna, and ServiceSource Inc. host live virtual programming on Zoom five days a week. The events range from fitness classes to special presentations to interactive games. This resource is free and all older adults and adults with disabilities who live in Northern Virginia are welcome to use it.” [Neighborhood and Community Services]

It’s Tuesday — Mostly cloudy throughout the day. High of 81 and low of 68. Sunrise at 5:45 am and sunset at 8:39 pm. [Weather.gov]

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Morning Notes

Media crews wait outside the Fairfax County Courthouse for jurors to deliver a verdict in the defamation trial involving actors Amber Heard and Johnny Depp (staff photo by David Taube)

Baby Born at Reston Fire Station Makes Visit — “Today, Station 25, Reston, B-Shift hosted Baby Ivy, who made her entrance into the world in Station 25 parking lot recently, and her big brother, mom and dad. 25-B were thrilled and presented the family w/station shirt/patch. Baby Ivy brought some goodies for the shift!” [FCFRD/Twitter]

TJ Students Reflect on First Year Under New Admissions System — “As the adults did battle in courtrooms, students such as Sarah Castillo were reconsidering their options. Hundreds of students who had neither thought of applying to TJ, nor felt they had a chance of acceptance under the old admissions system, now took the plunge — and some of them, including Sarah, got in.” [The Washington Post]

Burke House Fire Leads to Over $500K in Damages — Smoldering embers dropped in a pile of sawdust ignited a house fire in the 8900 block of Arley Drive on Thursday (May 26) that displaced two people and resulted in $516,075 in damages. Firefighters at the scene saw “heavy fire” through the two-story house’s roof, and one resident got minor injuries. [FCFRD]

Over a Quarter of Primary Mail Ballots Returned — “We’ve had about 28% of #votebymail ballots returned so far in the Democratic primary for the 8th Congressional District. Return your ballot now or #voteearly in person at the Fairfax County Govt. Center” [Fairfax County Office of Elections/Twitter]

West Falls Church Restaurant Closed Permanently — DC Steakholders owners Usman and Lilly Bhatti said in a May 4 message that “inflation, staffing shortages, and rising food costs have taken a toll on our business,” noting that their food trucks and catering business will continue. The restaurant first opened on Arlington Blvd. in April 2019 and served burgers and frozen custard. [Annandale Today]

Reston Food Delivery Business Plans Expansion — “Frolick is a fresh take on food delivery, offering a rotating menu of chef-prepared meals — delivered for now only in Northern Virginia but soon expanding to D.C. and then, perhaps, well beyond…Frolick was born in the summer of 2021 with a big assist from GateGroup, the Swiss-based airline catering giant whose North American headquarters is in Reston.” [DC Inno]

Future Springfield Town Center Hotel Site Sold — “PREIT…announced execution of a purchase and sale agreement for 11 outparcels that will generate gross proceeds in excess of $32 million. The Company also executed an agreement of sale for a vacant parcel at Springfield Town Center set to be developed into a hotel site for $2.5 million as the Company executes on its vision of delivering one-stop destinations for the communities it serves.” [PREIT]

Jefferson Manor Kids Start Pet Directory — “Two sisters in Alexandria, Virginia, created a directory of all the neighborhood pets to raise money for good causes and bring the community together.” There have been 144 different pets submitted to the directory so far. [NBC4]

Free Fishing Day This Weekend — The Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources is helping people learn how to fish with an event from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. this Saturday (June 4) at Burke Lake. Equipment and bait are provided, and attendees don’t need to purchase a fishing license. [DWR]

It’s Wednesday — Partly cloudy throughout the day. High of 87 and low of 73. Sunrise at 5:47 am and sunset at 8:30 pm. [Weather.gov]

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Voters cast ballots in a McLean Community Center Governing Board election (courtesy MCC)

(Updated at 12:15 a.m. on 5/25/2022) The McLean Community Center saw a noticeable uptick in participation for its latest governing board election.

A total of 2,504 ballots were cast to determine three new adult board members and two teen members, MCC reported in its preliminary results. That is roughly four times the 606 voters who turned out for last year’s election.

There were 2,381 voters and 123 youth voters. 2,064 people voted absentee, while 440 people cast their ballot this past Saturday (May 21) during McLean Day.

The turnout still represents just a fraction of the 18,000 households in Small District 1A — Dranesville, the special tax district that funds the center, but MCC says it was glad to see more residents get involved.

“We are happy with the increased participation,” MCC spokesperson Sabrina Anwah said. “As the center’s programs continue to expand and become more inclusive, we hope to experience more and more involvement of the patrons that we serve.”

The 2022 governing board race was unusually crowded, drawing 12 candidates — nine adults and three teens.

Kristina Groennings led the field for the adult seats with 1,531 votes. She will be joined on the board by Anna Bartosiewicz (1,403 votes) and Ari Ghasemian (1,400 votes).

Max Blacksten, who currently represents the McLean High School boundary area on the board, was defeated by two votes in his bid for reelection. He will be succeeded by Sarah Tran, while the Langley High School area will be served by Charlotte Loving, who unsuccessfully campaigned for the seat in 2021 but ran uncontested this year.

Tasked with making policy, programming, and budget decisions, the MCC Governing Board’s typically unassuming proceedings have been shaken up over the past year by conservative backlash to a “Drag Storybook Hour” for children that the center co-sponsored with the Dolley Madison Library last June.

According to The Washington Post’s account, tension over the Pride Month event turned the 2022 board elections into a referendum on MCC’s efforts to promote equity and diversity with its programming, which has become a priority under new Executive Director Daniel Singh.

Groennings, Bartosiewicz, and Ghasemian had expressed support for Fairfax County’s One Fairfax equity policy and were backed by members of the county’s Democratic committee, according to the Post. The other candidates included former Trump administration official Katherine Gorka.

(Correction: The election winners were not endorsed by the Fairfax County Democratic Committee, as previously stated. They got support from individual committee members, but the FCDC didn’t officially endorse any candidates, since this was a nonpartisan election.)

The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors voted today (Tuesday) to formally appoint the election winners to the governing board.

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A Fairfax County polling place in the 2021 general election (staff photo by Jay Westcott)

Two precincts in Reston could be in for some big changes in the next general election.

The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors is considering a motion tomorrow (Tuesday) to relocate and rename North Point #1 and North Point #2 precincts.

The change comes after St. Thomas ร  Becket Catholic Church, the current site of both precincts at 1421 Wiehle Avenue, told the Office of Elections that it could not “logistically accommodate voting for both precincts,” according to a staff memo.

The first precinct would be moved to Aldrin Elementary School at 11375 Center Harbor Road and renamed North Point, while the second precinct would continue to vote at the church. To avoid confusion, the precinct will be renamed Piney Run.

The county plans to hold a public hearing on Tuesday, June 7 at 4 p.m.

If approved, the change would go into effect starting with the general and special elections on Nov. 8. The primary election on June 21 would not be affected in an effort to avoid any “possible confusion about the status of precincts and polling places,” county staff said.

Other precincts in Fairfax County are also slated for changes:

  • A Lorton precinct that has been located at Lorton Station Elementary School would move back to Lorton Community Center, which is expected to reopen in August after an expansion
  • Mosby Woods #1 and #2 would be renamed to reflect the new name of Mosaic Elementary School
  • The Fairfax Station precinct could be moved to Burke Centre Library, since its current site at St. Peter’s in the Woods Church is being renovated

North Point #1 was established in May 1988, with boundaries adjusted several times. The precinct was officially divided into North Point #1 and North Point #2 in March.

The county approved changes to more than half its voting precincts last month in response to last year’s redistricting process, which redrew federal and state electoral districts in order to balance constitutents based the latest Census data.

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Morning Notes

Yellow flowers at Walker Nature Center in Reston (photo by Marjorie Copson)

Motorcyclist Injured in Crash — Fairfax County police detectives responded to a crash involving a motorcycle & vehicle at Braddock Road and Second Road in the Fairfax area around 1 p.m. yesterday (Sunday). The motorcyclist was taken to the hospital with injuries initially considered life-threatening but later got upgraded. [FCPD/Twitter]

GOP Selects 8th and 10th Congressional District Nominees — Karina Lipsman, a Ukranian-born defense worker who lives in Arlington, beat four other contenders to become the Republican nominee for the 8th District, where she’ll face either incumbent Rep. Don Beyer or his Democratic challenger Victoria Virasingh. The 10th District will be a contest between incumbent Rep. Jennifer Wexton and Navy veteran Hung Cao. [WTOP]

Amazon Testing Retail Delivery Drivers in Tysons — “Amazon is turning to its legions of contracted Flex drivers to deliver packages from mall-based retailers, allowing sellers to ship products from their own stores using the e-commerce giant’s delivery service…Amazon is also testing the service in Chandler, Arizona, and Tysons Corner, Virginia, according to Bloomberg.” [CNBC]

McLean Bible Church Seeks Election Redo to Stop Lawsuit — “The conflict over the McLean election is part culture war, part battle over bylaws, fueled by political polarization and the broader evangelical ‘woke wars,’ combined with a recent pastoral transition and a global pandemic.” [Religion News Service]

People Attacked With Machete in Groveton — “3500 block of Robert E. Lee Place, 5/13/22, 11:51 p.m. Two men displayed a gun and assaulted two victims with a machete. One victim was transported with injuries not considered life threatening. Preliminary, this does not appear to be a random act.” [FCPD]

Reston Home Depot Robbed — “1651 Reston Parkway (Home Depot), 5/17/22, 4:16 p.m. A man exited the store with merchandise without paying. When confronted by store employees, he displayed a firearm and ran away. No injuries were reported.” [FCPD]

Vienna Police Investigate Vehicle Window Smashings — “First, it was a rash of catalytic-converter thefts that kept Vienna police hopping earlier this year. Now vandals have been damaging vehicles’ windows. Vienna police on May 17 received four reports of vandalism on vehicles parked on two streets.” [Sun Gazette]

It’s Monday — Light rain starting in the afternoon. High of 72 and low of 59. Sunrise at 5:51 am and sunset at 8:23 pm. [Weather.gov]

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Rep. Don Beyer (left) faces challenger Victoria Virasingh in the Democratic primary (via Office of Rep. Don Beyer, Victoria Virasingh/Facebook)

(Updated at 11:20 a.m. on 5/6/2022) Fairfax County will kick off early voting for the June 21 Democratic primary tomorrow (Friday), but with only one race on the ballot, turnout will likely be muted.

Incumbent Don Beyer faces political newcomer Victoria Virasingh in the 8th Congressional District. It will be the county’s first primary under new district maps drawn and approved byย the Virginia Supreme Court last December.

The new 8th district covers eastern Fairfax County from McLean to Mason Neck, including Falls Church, Bailey’s Crossroads, Annandale, Rose Hill, and much of the Mount Vernon magisterial district. It also represents Arlington County and the City of Alexandria.

“Let’s get out there and vote to shape a future that works for all of us,” Virasingh said yesterday (Wednesday) on Twitter.

In-person early voting will initially be limited to the Fairfax County Government Center, but additional sites will open on June 11 at the Franconia, Mason, McLean, and Mount Vernon governmental centers as well as Thomas Jefferson Library.

Absentee ballots, which are available to all registered voters in the district, will start arriving in the mail after Friday, according to the Fairfax County Office of Elections.

Early voting ends June 18.

The Republican Party will select its nominees for the 8th district at a convention on May 21. There are five candidates in the running: Monica Carpio, Jeff Jordan, Heerak Christian Kim, Karina Lipsman, and Kezia Tunnell.

Along with the Democratic and Republican nominees, independent Teddy Fikre is vying for the Democrats’ 8th district seat in the November general election.

Meanwhile, Republicans will hold a canvass tomorrow (Saturday) in Fair Lakes to determine the party’s nominee to challenge Rep. Gerry Connolly for the 11th district, which spans Great Falls to Lorton and includes Fairfax, Herndon, Merrifield, Reston, Tysons, and Vienna. Candidates include Manga Anantatmula, Joseph Babb, Barbara Banks, Matthew Chappell and James Myles.

Rep. Don Beyer

The former lieutenant governor of Virginia is seeking to land his fifth term in Congress.

“This year I worked harder than ever to help my constituents, opening thousands of constituent cases with federal agencies on behalf of Northern Virginians and returning millions of dollars to VA-8 taxpayers,” Beyer said in a January statement when announcing his reelection campaign.

He highlighted his involvement with COVID-19 relief legislation, the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, and a House billย to incentivize hate crime reporting that was signed into law in March.

“We have much more work to do in the year ahead and beyond, starting with comprehensive action on climate in the Build Back Better Act, which I helped draft as a member of the House Ways and Means Committee,” he said in the statement.

Victoria Virasingh

According to a statement from her campaign, top priorities for Virasingh, who announced her campaign in July, include:

  • Raising the federal minimum wage to $18
  • Advancing women’s issues such as robust reproductive healthcare, affordable childcare and equitable pay
  • Tackling data privacy and protection
  • Providing federal tax credits to build homes in underserved communities, increasing support for the low-income housing tax credit, and addressing restrictive land use and zoning policies
  • Expanding access to affordable healthcare by passing Medicare for All

She’s emphasizing outreach to communities that have historically been left out of the political process as well as her volunteer work, which includes serving as outreach vice chair for the Arlington County Democratic Committee.

The Arlingtonian is seeking to try new ways to address enduring problems and notes her passion for climate action, voting rights protection and campaign finance reform.

Photo via Victoria Virasingh/Facebook

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Voters fill out their ballots at Marshall High School in November 2021 (staff photo by Jay Westcott)

The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors approved changes to more than half of the county’s voting precincts after a public hearing on Tuesday (March 8).

Spurred by last year’s state redistricting process, which redrew federal and state electoral districts to balance constituents based on 2020 Census data, the precinct adjustments will require around 4% of the county’s registered voters — approximately 29,000 people — to switch polling places.

The county-level redistricting efforts, completed in December, affected only seven precincts.

County officials are racing to implement the changes before the June 21 primary elections. They carry a one-time cost of $501,840 and a recurring annual cost of $54,400 for mail, personnel, and equipment to make sure people are aware of the changes, according to the county.

As noted by Fairfax County Electoral Board Secretary Kate Hanley, the precincts were revised based on the following guidelines:

  • Disrupt the fewest voters possible
  • Ensure precinct boundaries and polling places meet all legal requirements
  • Confirm polling places have adequate facilities to accommodate voters, including parking
  • Minimize the number of extremely small or extremely large precincts

The “re-precincting” changes will ensure each precinct has at least 100 voters and no more than 5,000, among other requirements. As a result, the county will have 17 more voting precincts and one more polling place, bringing the respective totals up to 264 precincts and 230 polling sites.

Braddock District Supervisor James Walkinshaw, who chairs the Board of Supervisors’ Legislative Committee, attributed the need to adjust precincts to disruptive changes caused by the state’s redistricting, which sought to make little to no deviations in population between districts.

He said he hopes officials consider the cost of that approach for the next Census in 2030.

The General Assembly also passed a law that largely prohibited split precincts, complicating matters when the new district maps drawn by the Virginia Supreme Court “created numerous split precincts in the County,” county staff said in the board agenda.

Previously, a single precinct could generally serve voters in two different legislative districts.

“What we’re being asked to do is at the behest of the state and not being done at the behest of the county,” Board of Supervisors Chairman Jeff McKay said. “It’s quite different than the minimally disruptive process that we went through for redistricting here in Fairfax County.”

Hanley told the board that election officials will need its help because a lot of people will be confused. An online system where voters can find their precinct doesn’t yet reflect the changes.

She said the county will seek to educate voters.

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Among other changes, Fairfax County is proposing to create two Westbriar precincts after the existing one was split by redistricting (via Fairfax County)

More than half of Fairfax County’s 247 voting precincts need to be revised to eliminate conflicts created by last year’s redistricting process.

The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors voted yesterday (Tuesday) to hold a public hearing on March 8 to get feedback on proposed boundary adjustments that will consolidate precincts, create new ones, and move or establish new polling places.

The changes would affect 154 precincts, 54 which were split by the new electoral district maps drawn by the Virginia Supreme Court. Another 100 will be affected by the county’s efforts to fix the split districts.

A total of 29,000 registered voters, or 4% of the voter roll, would be affected by the changes, according to the county.

The county underwent its own redistricting process last year, with the board ultimately approving maps in December that moved seven precincts. The new maps received a certificate of no objection from the Virginia Attorney General’s office in January.

However, the Virginia General Assembly passed an amendment in 2020 that prohibited the use of split precincts except in very limited cases, requiring precincts to be contained within a single magisterial, state senate, delegate, or congressional district. It also bars localites from creating a new precinct with more than 5,000 voters.

Before the amendment’s passage, a single precinct could serve voters in two different legislative districts, so voters would receive different ballots based on the district they resided.

The amendment specifically says a split precinct can only be legal is if the area has less than 100 voters, and the split can’t be avoided.

The Fairfax County Office of Elections’ plan for addressing the currently split precincts has to follow four guidelines:

  • Disrupt the fewest voters possible
  • Ensure the affected precinct boundaries and polling places meet all legal requirements, such as location and accessibility
  • Provide adequate parking and other facilities at polling places
  • Minimize the number of extremely small or extremely large precincts

Once the changes are approved by the Board of Supervisors, they must be reviewed by the Virginia Office of the Attorney General, which could take up to 60 days, and meet the standards set by the U.S. Voting Rights Act.

The county is required to have the plan in place before the primary elections on June 21. A full list of the proposed changes can be found in the package for yesterday’s board meeting.

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(Updated at 1:20 p.m.) While Democrats fared well in Fairfax County, sweeping the local delegate races, Virginia will return to a Republican governor with Glenn Youngkin after former Gov. Terry McAuliffe failed to replicate his 2013 victory.

McAuliffe conceded today (Wednesday), congratulating the governor-elect, thanking supporters, and stressing the need to improve Virginia.

The results are still unofficial and won’t be certified until Nov. 15. Ballots are still being counted too, though many news outlets, including the Associated Press, called the race last night.

Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Chairman Jeff McKay told FFXnow that the election results will not alter the pride that the county takes in its diversity or his commitment to the One Fairfax policy, which advocates for equity.

In a statement, McKay said he will “always fight for the interests of Fairfax County and will work with our statewide leaders to ensure we continue to have one of the best education systems in the country, provide high-quality services, prioritize public health and safety, and ensure Fairfax County is a place where everyone has access to opportunity and growth.”

The Fairfax County Democratic Committee celebrated victories for 15 incumbent delegates as well as newcomers Irene Shin (86th District) and Elizabeth Bennett-Parker (45th District), while calling the overall results “grim.”

“Fairfax County overwhelmingly rejected the message of Youngkin,” FCDC Chair Bryan Graham said in a statement. “…We will continue to reject the anti-immigrant, anti-public education, and anti-equity notions of the Republican Party.”

FFXnow contacted the Fairfax County Republican Committee for comment but has not heard back as of press time.

The county’s lone Republican supervisor, Pat Herrity, who represents Springfield District, said it’s a good day for Fairfax County residents.

“I think this election marks the beginning of a movement to bring all Virginians together to focus on common sense solutions to everyday problems instead of partisan politics and rhetoric,” Herrity said in a statement. “This includes a new focus on public safety, our education system, the economy and the cost of government.”

Youngkin’s victory will have a direct effect on future Fairfax County elections.

State law dictates that two seats of the county’s three-member Electoral Boardย represent the political party that won the most recent gubernatorial race. The runner-up party gets the third seat. Board members serve three-year terms with one seat opening up each year.

The board’s duties include administering absentee ballots and conducting elections.

While voting in Fairfax County unfolded smoothly for the most part, technical issues led to a delay in reporting some results from in-person early voting.

Approximately 20,000 electronic ballots had to be re-scanned because thumb drives were corrupted and didn’t work, affecting four machines at voting sites, said Brian Worthy, a spokesperson with the Fairfax County Office of Elections.

“That’s why we have paper ballots,” he said, noting that the backups allowed the rescanning to occur.

Fairfax County Turnout for Democrats Weakens

Turnout in Fairfax County was nearly the same as the last gubernatorial race in 2017, when 56.1% of active voters cast a ballot. Unofficial results from Tuesday showed around 437,000 ballots cast out of over 780,000 registered voters, a 55.99% turnout, according to a county elections report.

While early voting was significant, influenced by a 2020 change in state law to allow no-excuse absentee voting, it failed to reach the level of turnout seen last year, when there was a presidential race on the ballot.

Support for McAuliffe from voters in Fairfax County, the state’s most populous area, was strong, but not quite as robust as it was for previous Democratic candidates, including in the last gubernatorial race and last year’s presidential election.

Fairfax County voters favored McAuliffe with 64.6% of the vote in this year’s general election, whereas they supported Joe Biden’s bid for the presidency in 2020 with a 69.4% majority. Democratic Gov. Ralph Northam won Fairfax County in 2017 with 66.5% of the vote.

Once the results are certified, Youngkin will be sworn in for his four-year term on Jan. 15.

Matt Blitz contributed to this report.ย 

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