Fairfax County approves voting precinct, on-campus polls to open for general election

Mason student Charles Bright, 25, testifies before the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors about the creation of a Mason voting precinct and polling location. The Board approved the ordinance which contained the change. (Kevin Loker) 

The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors voted Tuesday to approve a redistricting ordinance that includes the creation of a new voting precinct for George Mason University’s Fairfax campus. Students, faculty and staff who are registered to vote as living within the precinct’s boundaries will be able to vote on-campus in November’s general election.

Passage of the ordinance that creates the new University precinct, formed out of the western portion of the Braddock District’s Woodson precinct, followed a public hearing on the Board’s recommendation. Three speakers testified before the board, all in support of the new voting precinct.

Two of the testimonies came from current Mason students. The third came from a Fairfax County resident in a local neighborhood, Janet Oleszek, who is also running for the Braddock District Supervisor race. The theme of the testimonies was convenience.

“Remember who [the students] are,” said Oleszek, who testified many of the students she’s seen over her years from her time living in the nearby Bonnie Brae as being without cars and without transportation. “Let’s make voting and participating in our government easy and possible for them.”

Oleszek is a former-at-large member of the Fairfax County School Board. In 2007, she challenged incumbent state senator Ken Cuccinelli, losing by just 101 votes in a recount.

The on-campus polling location will be situated at University Hall. The current polling place for registered voters on the Fairfax campus is Woodson High School, approximately a ten minute trip into Fairfax City. 

With one exception, all new precincts and boundary changes approved in the ordinance, including the University precinct, will be in effect for the general election. Precincts for the primary election in August will remain the same.

Check back soon for the full story.

Update 1:01 p.m. Information on Oleszek, who testified in favor of the creation of the voting precinct, was added to the story.

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