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Familiar faces fill final ballot for Vienna Town Council election

The ballot for the Town of Vienna’s May 4 election has been finalized, with four candidates — three incumbents and one challenger — vying for the three seats that are up for a vote.

Councilmembers Nisha Patel, Steve Potter, and Howard Springsteen all announced on Feb. 1 that they will be campaigning to retain their seats. Patel and Potter are both seeking second terms after being elected to the council for the first time in 2019, while Springsteen has served six consecutive, two-year terms since 2009.

The fourth candidate is Vienna Planning Commissioner David Patariu, a lawyer who was appointed to the commission in October 2019. This is his second time running for a position on the town council after he joined six other candidates in last year’s race.

The Town of Vienna holds elections annually on the first Tuesday of May. Three town council seats go on the ballot every year, and even years also feature mayoral elections.

Polls will be open from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. at the Vienna Community Center (120 Cherry Street SE).

All Vienna residents who are over 18 years old and have U.S. citizenship are eligible to vote in town elections. New voters can register in person with the general registrar’s office at the Fairfax County Government Center (12000 Government Center Parkway), by mail, or online.

Vienna will not be utilizing ballot drop-off boxes for the upcoming election, according to the Fairfax County Office of Elections.

However, that could potentially change. The Virginia General Assembly passed a bill during its special session in February that requires the establishment of drop-off locations for absentee ballots, aiming to make permanent a measure that was implemented on a temporary basis last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The legislation went to Gov. Ralph Northam’s desk on March 1 with a deadline of 11:59 p.m. on March 31 for him to act on it.

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