(Updated 10/18/19) In-person absentee voting starts today (Thursday) at the McLean Governmental Center, along with several other locations around Fairfax County.
In total, 10 locations will offer in-person absentee voting until Saturday, Nov. 2, at 5 p.m. — the last day to vote absentee in-person.
Voters in the Tysons area can head to the McLean Governmental Center (1437 Balls Hill Road) and the Providence Community Center (3001 Vaden Drive) between 3-7 p.m. Monday-Friday and 9 a.m.-5 p.m. on Saturdays.
All of the locations will be closed on Sundays.
The last day to apply for an absentee ballot was Oct. 29.
10 locations across Fairfax County are now open for in-person absentee voting. Learn more: https://t.co/5hVlINJtoU #absenteeballot #virginiaelections #VAleg #VApol #vote #fairfaxcounty pic.twitter.com/53wjheiCou
— Fairfax County Votes (@fairfaxvotes) October 17, 2019
Tysons Reporter has learned that a retired foreign service officer is joining the race for the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors’ Providence District seat.
Eric Jones started working for the U.S. State Department in 1990 and retired in 2016, according to his LinkedIn.
Jones and his wife Yelena, who is a realtor, bought their home in Fairfax in 2005, according to The Washington Post.
Jones has been endorsed by the Republican Party, Pat Ferguson, who works in Fairfax County’s Office of Elections, told Tysons Reporter.
His name is expected to show up on the Virginia Department of Elections’ list of candidates on Monday, Ferguson said.
The previous Republican candidate for the seat, Paul Bolon, died from a heart attack in August at the age of 69.
Jones will face Democratic candidate Dalia Palchik on Nov. 5.
Image via Fairfax County Republican Committee
As election season heats up, debates give voters a chance to hear from candidates and learn more about pressing issues that matter to them most.
Throughout October, there will be several public forums around the area hosted by community organizations.
Wednesday, Oct. 16: Providence District candidates
The Providence District Candidate Forum will take place from 7 -9 p.m. at the Providence District Community Center (3001 Vaden Drive). This is an opportunity to meet the candidates running for the Providence District School Board and Providence District Supervisor seats. This event is hosted by the League of Women Voters in the Fairfax Area.
Thursday, Oct. 17: Dranesville District candidates
The League of Women Voters-Fairfax Area will host a forum at the McLean Community Center (1234 Ingleside Avenue). Speakers will include those running for Dranesville District Supervisor, Dranesville District School Board Member and House District 34, which represents Great Falls, parts of McLean and the Wolf Trap area. It starts at 7 p.m.
Thursday, Oct. 24: Falls Church City Council candidates
Attendees will be able to hear from the four candidates vying for three seats on the Falls Church City Council starting at 7 p.m. at the Falls Church American Legion Hall, Post 130 (400 N. Oak Street).
The candidates are: Phil Duncan, Letty Hardi and David Tarter — incumbents — and Stuart Whitaker. Former candidate Thomas Cash dropped out of the race in August.
Wednesday, Oct. 30: Dranesville District candidates
The McLean Citizens Association will hold a forum at the McLean Community Center with the candidates running for Dranesville District Supervisor, Dranesville District School Board Member and House District 34. The event starts at 7:30 p.m.
Absentee voting in Fairfax County begins tomorrow (Sept. 20) for the Nov. 5 elections.
Eligible community members can register to vote for the upcoming elections online or at the Office of Elections (12000 Government Center Parkway) in conference rooms two and three. Voters may also receive their ballots through the mail.
Absentee voters in the Tysons area may also submit their registration or ballots to the McLean Governmental Center (1437 Balls Hill Road) on Oct. 19, Oct. 26 and Nov. 2 from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m.
Some reasons voters may want to submit absentee ballots include temporary residence outside of the U.S., confinement awaiting trial or those who have a religious obligation. Other reasons can be found on the Virginia Department of Elections’ website.
All absentee voters will need a valid driver’s license or state-issued identification card and their social security number to register.
This year, voters can choose candidates can choose between candidates for a variety of positions including the next chairman for the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors.
For those unfamiliar with the process of absentee voting, Fairfax County published a variety of resources to explain the procedure and help answer questions.
Ballots will be translated into English, Spanish, Korean and Vietnamese.
The last day to apply for an absentee ballot is seven days before the election, or Oct. 29 by 5 p.m., according to Fairfax County. All absentee ballots must be received by 7 p.m. on Nov. 5 in order to be counted.
Jonathan Fahey, a former federal prosecutor, has thrown his hat into the race for the commonwealth’s attorney position in Fairfax.
Fahey worked on drug, gang and white-collar crime cases as an assistant U.S. attorney in the Eastern District of Virginia, but resigned last month, the Washington Post reported.
He is listed as an Independent candidate for the spot, according to Fairfax County candidate information.
Fahey served as general counsel for the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy last year, according to his LinkedIn. He also was an adjunct professor at American University’s law school and the George Washington University.
Fahey lives in the Falls Church area of Fairfax County near Belvedere Park, according to the Fairfax Bar Association.
Fahey will face off against former U.S. Department of Justice prosecutor Steve Descano, a progressive candidate who ousted Raymond Morrogh in a close race for the Democratic nomination.
The general election is Nov. 5.
Photo via Jonathan Fahey/LinkedIn
Palchik won the nomination for the Providence District seat on the Board of Supervisors, defeating four challengers and pulling ahead of Fairfax County Planning Commissioner Phillip Niedzielski-Eichner by nearly 1,500 votes.
Meanwhile, McKay beat three challengers to clinch the Democratic nomination for the county board’s chair.
Frank Anderson, the executive director of the Fairfax County Democratic Committee, told Tysons Reporter that he was surprised by how many Democratic candidates flooded the Board of Supervisors races, although the large fundraising sums weren’t unexpected.
“I was surprised by how many candidates decided to jump in,” Anderson said, adding that a race like the one for Providence District supervisor typically has two to three candidates instead of five.
With crowded races, some of the candidates’ clashing resulted in an “acrimonious” primary, Anderson said, adding, “It’s expected to be.”
On the Democratic Party’s end, Anderson said that the debates “got awkward,” yet the staff focused on staying “as non-partial as we can” and professional.
The primary also turned out to be expensive for several candidates.
Niedzielski-Eichner and Palchik both neared the $100,000 fundraising mark in the race for the Democratic nomination.
Every candidate for the Democratic nomination to the chair position raised over $100,000, with developer Tim Chapman raising $952,109.
Anderson said that the high fundraising amounts serve several purposes. Beyond paying for resources like campaign staff, recorded calls, glossy mailers and advertising, they also help to give the impression that a candidate has the backing of more supporters.
“When you donate to a candidate, you do it because you believe in them,” Anderson said. “You can’t know whether your dollar made the difference.”
Anderson said that potential donors can become enticed to give money if they see how much others have donated — essentially equating money with value.
Some candidates in the race received sizable checks, either from donations to themselves or from a few key supporters, like developer Tim Chapman who raised most of his $952,109 by donating to himself in the chair race and Hunter Mill candidate Maggie Parker, who received support from Comstock Companies, her employer.
“Not many voters have the time to see who is donating to the candidates,” Anderson said.
(Updated at 10:05 p.m.) School Board member Dalia Palchik won the Democratic nomination for the Providence District seat on the Board of Supervisors.
Shortly after 9 p.m., Palchik defeated Fairfax County Planning Commissioner Phillip Niedzielski-Eichner and three other challengers in the Democratic primary.
Palchik received 39.7 percent of the vote. She will face Republican Paul Bolon in the November election.
Palchik said in her victory speech:
This is part of a movement; a movement of people who want new leadership. People who want classrooms — not trailers — and teachers who can afford to live here. They want someone who is going to fight to protect the environment, to get solar panels, who are going to work hard every day to get us out of our cars and walking, biking, getting around, with access to buses and metro, and into a community that cares and is inclusive. This is the beginning. It’s been an incredible campaign. It was scary. It was fun. We cried. We laughed. And we want to see the next phase of Providence District in Fairfax County.
Palchik celebrated her win at Settle Down Easy (2822 Fallfax Drive), a local brewery that launched in 2018. It was a trendy spot that is representative of a candidate who pulled together a coalition across a variety of demographics.
Even at the headquarters of Niedzielski-Eichner, the runner-up in the race with 23.4 percent of the vote, there was a reluctant admission that Palchik was a charismatic candidate. Several Niedzielski-Eichner supporters noted that they saw her at polls shaking hands and taking selfies with voters.
Del. Mark Keam (D-35th) said Niedzielski-Eichner relied on an older local establishment, while Palchik was able to tap into a younger, wider base of local supporters.
Linda Smyth, the current Providence District supervisor, announced in December that she wouldn’t run for reelection this year, along with several other supervisors on the 10-member board.
Shortly before 10 p.m., current Lee District Supervisor Jeff McKay won the Democratic nomination for the Board of Supervisors’ chair with 42 percent of the vote. McKay beat Georgetown law professor Alicia Plerhoples, who received 31 percent of the vote, and two other Democratic challengers.
For the Virginia State Senate, incumbent Barbara Favola won with 61 percent of the vote, beating Nicole Merlene for the 31st District seat, which encompasses McLean.
Incumbent Dick Saslaw narrowly beat challengers Yasmine Taeb and Karen Torrent for the 35th District seat. Saslaw received 48 percent of the vote.
In a close race, challenger Steve Descano beat incumbent Raymond Morrogh for the Democratic nomination for the commonwealth’s attorney position in Fairfax.
Catherine Moran and Vernon Miles worked on this story.
Half of the day has gone by for voting in the Democratic primaries.
For Tysons-area residents, upcoming retirements have the Hunter Mill District, Providence District and chairman seats open on the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors.
The voter turnout so far in the Providence District is slightly above 4 percent, while the Hunter Mill District is 4.6 percent — both higher than the county’s district average of roughly 3.4 percent, the county tweeted at 1:02 p.m.
Voting kicked off quietly around Tysons this morning.
“A lot of people vote absentee,” John Shivnen, the chief election officer at the Providence Committee Meeting Room polling place, told Tysons Reporter. By 10:51 a.m., 36 people had voted there (7921 Jones Branch Drive).
While Shivnen said the county is expecting a higher turnout than in previous years, he expected the day to stay slow, except during lunchtime and early evening after people get off of work.
The Democratic candidates for the Board of Supervisors are:
Board of Supervisors chair:
Hunter Mill District:
Tysons-area voters will also determine the Democratic nominees for two Virginia Senate seats and the Commonwealth’s Attorney.
The polls are now open until 7 p.m. for today's primary election. While it's a Democratic primary, every registered voter can participate because in Virginia you don't register to vote by political party. #vote #votejune11 pic.twitter.com/b93Vqw9fPm
— Fairfax County Votes (@fairfaxvotes) June 11, 2019
Fairfax County Voters Receive Mass Political Texts — “An unknown number of Northern Virginia residents have received anonymous, unsolicited text messages linking to WAMU’s coverage of an ethics complaint filed against a top candidate for chair of the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors… The texts were not sent by WAMU.” [WAMU]
New Bike Trail Needs a Name — The Fairfax County Department of Transportation wants the public’s help with naming a new bike and pedestrian trail along the I-66 corridor. The online survey is open until June 30. [FCDOT]
Man Struck and Killed on I-495 Near Tysons — “Around 12:33 a.m. [on Saturday, June 8], a sedan traveling north on I-495 near Route 7 in Fairfax County when the car ran off the right side of the interstate and struck a concrete barrier and then the guard rail. The sedan’s driver, an adult male, exited his vehicle and was attempting to cross the northbound lanes of I-495 when he crossed in front of a northbound tractor-trailer.” [Inside NoVa]
Fires Erupted Around Vienna — Firefighters got a two-story house fire in the 9000 block of Edgepark Road under control yesterday (June 9). On Saturday, firefighters extinguished a deck fire in 8500 block of Pepperdine Drive. [Twitter, Twitter]
Local Students Win National Merit Scholarships — Students from James Madison and McLean high schools were among the 26 Fairfax County Public Schools students who won 2019 Merit Scholarship awards by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation. [FCPS]
Updated at 5:15 p.m. on 6/13/19 — Corrects the description of the Jefferson Village Association.
As the Fairfax County Democratic Primary winds toward the election next Tuesday (June 11), the fundraising race closes in for some but leaves others in the dust.
Edythe Kelleher, a former member of the Vienna Town Council, led fundraising in April and May with $41,849. Edythe and her husband Gary Kelleher are the leading contributors to the campaign, contributing $10,000 and $20,000, respectively.
Other backers that might be familiar to attentive readers include JDA Custom Homes, a homebuilder based in Vienna, and Douglas D’Alexander, the developer behind the planned redevelopment of the former Marco Polo lot destroyed by arson.
Phillip Niedzielski-Eichner, a planning commissioner representing the Providence District, had previously led the candidates in fundraising. In April and May, Niedzielski-Eichner raised $35,168. Records show Jonathan Cherner, a principal at the Cherner Development Group, and Mark Lowham, CEO of TTR Sotheby’s International Realty, each donated $5,000 to Niedzielski-Eichner.
Dalia Palchik, a School Board member representing the Providence District, wasn’t far behind Niedzielski-Eichner with $31,547 raised. Palchik’s leading backer was the Jefferson Village Association LP — real estate developers in Bethesda, Md. — which donated $15,000.
The first and last candidates to announce in the race both trailed behind the others. Linh Hoang didn’t enter the race until March, and in April and May, Hoang raised $18,514. Hoang’s top contributor was a person named Emily Woo, who donated $5,000.
Erika Yalowitz was the first candidate to announce in the race, but was the last in fundraising for April and May. Yalowitz’ top backer was Timothy Chapman, a candidate in the contentious Board of Supervisors chair race, who donated $5,000.
Photo via Dalia Palchik/Twitter