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Issue 83
Friday, September 17, 2021
Prince William County
Dear Neighbors,

Wednesday, September 22, is the first day of Fall. While all season beginnings initiate a transition period, I don't think any do as much as Fall. Sweaters come out of their tucked away locations, crates at farmer's markets are piled high with apples and pumpkins, mums are showing off their autumnal hues across neighborhoods, pumpkin spice is prolific, the smell of fresh baked goods permeates the air, weekends are full of football watching plans, baseball World Series teams are determined, Halloween costume choices are debated, family Thanksgiving plans are firmed-up, and ads showcase Christmas countdown calendars.

This year it all seems a bit more special to me. Last year their was no vaccine. Now you can store your vaccination record using a QR code (see article below). Last year their were no fans at games. This year the roar of the crowd is real. The list can go on and on. Fall is the season of being thankful, and I am incredibly thankful, that while we haven't moved out of the pandemic, we are in a much better place than last year.

In Service,
Chair Ann Wheeler
Chair's Calendar
Business Decides to Stay and Grow in PWC
On Tuesday, September 7, Chair Wheeler participated in Planet Direct's ribbon-cutting ceremony for its new 115,000 square-foot corporate headquarters in Innovation Park. The full-service direct mail production facility chose to remain in PWC when exploring options for its new location. The company’s expansion will retain 130 jobs and create 100 new jobs. The $15 million facility is expected to generate an estimated $1.5 million in new property taxes to PWC over the next 10 years.
“This new headquarters facility speaks directly to our 2021-2024 Strategic Plan that encourages a resilient economy focused on creating and maintaining jobs, expanding the commercial tax base, and enhancing the quality of life for our residents.”
Ann Wheeler
Chair At-Large Board of County Supervisors
Supporting Agricultural Advocacy
Saturday, September 11, Chair Wheeler was the guest speaker at the Prince William-Fairfax Farm Bureau annual meeting. They are one of the 88 county Farm Bureaus located throughout the Commonwealth that collectively form the Virginia Farm Bureau®, the largest non-profit agricultural advocacy organization in Virginia. It is dedicated to ensuring farming remains a way of life and enhancing members have fresh and locally grown food for their tables. They also support members through lobbying, advocacy and education on behalf of Virginia agriculture. The state bureaus comprise the American Farm Bureau Federation.
School Meal and Calendar Inclusivity
Thursday, September 9, Chair Wheeler joined Governor Ralph Northam at PWCS Beville Middle School where he announced the Task Force on Culturally Inclusive School Meals and Calendars final report. The task force was charged with identifying best practices to equip schools to adopt culturally and religiously inclusive calendars and serve meals which accommodate more dietary restrictions.
Task Force Recommendations Included:

  • Helping schools understand the religious and cultural needs of their students, assess their cultural inclusivity practices, and identify opportunities for growth.
  • Creating culturally inclusive food pantries in partnership with local and faith-based organizations.
  • Recognizing schools that implement innovative and inclusive school meal and calendar practices.
Meeting with Leaders from NOVA, DC, and Maryland
Wednesday, September 9, Chair Wheeler participated in the Greater Washington Board of Trade's Capital Region Business Forum. The first in person meeting in 18 months featured Virginia Governor Northam, Maryland Governor Hogan, and Washington D. C. Mayor Bowser. Topics included:
  • Ending the pandemic
  • Growing and diversifying our regional economy
  • Educating our children and young adults
  • Promoting racial and social equity
  • Investing in rail and other transportation networks
The Greater Washington Board of Trade has represented all industry sectors in the District of Columbia, suburban Maryland, and Northern Virginia for over 130 years. Pro-business and non-partisan, it brings local leaders together to drive smart, innovative solutions for inclusive economic growth and livability.
Chair Wheeler also attended a:

  • Patriot Service on Friday September 10, at Congregation Ner Shalom Synagogue.
  • Pakistan Day Festival on Sunday, September 12, celebrating the 75th anniversary of when Pakistan achieved independence and was declared a sovereign state on August 14, 1947.
The Virginia Department of Health announced yesterday the launch of QR codes for use in the verification of vaccination status. The technology allows you to show proof of vaccination with a digital or printed QR code instead of a paper card. QR codes, short for “quick response,” are a type of barcode that can be scanned with smartphones. Commonly used in retail, logistics, and other sectors, OR codes will help improve the consistency and security of vaccination information while protecting privacy.

The QR code is digitally signed by the Virginia Department of Health, so it cannot be altered or forged. You choose if and when you want to share the Information from the QR code. Businesses and employers that choose to verify an individual’s vaccination status can scan QR codes with the free SMART Health Verifier App. You do not need to download an app to use QR codes. Virginia is now the fifth U.S. state to adopt the SMART Health format for QR codes.
How to Obtain Your Free QR Vaccination Verification Code

  1. Your vaccination record must be in the Virginia Immunization Information System (VIIS), see below for more information.
  2. Your vaccination record must include a working phone number.
  3. Visit Search for Vaccination Record and enter your name, date of birth and zip code.
  4. Complete the quick two-step verification process
  5. Save your QR code to a phone photo gallery, print it, or store it in a compatible account.

About the VIIS:
  • Nearly all doses administered in Virginia are reported to VIIS, including pharmacies, physician offices, health department clinics, federally qualified health centers, and community vaccination centers.
  • Some doses administered outside Virginia to Virginia residents may be in VIIS.
  • Doses administered directly by federal agencies such as the Department of Defense or Department of Veterans Affairs are not reported to VIIS.
  • A person whose record cannot be retrieved automatically may call 877-VAX-IN-VA (877-829-4682, TTY users call 7-1-1) for assistance.
Mass Vaccination Sites
PWC has entered into contracts to revive leases at its former mass vaccination sites located in Woodbridge and Manassas. The decision was made to ensure the County is prepared if booster shots and/or vaccinations for those under 12 are approved. Chair Wheeler spoke to several media outlets on the matter. You can see her interview with Fox 5 news in the video and article linked below.
"Over the last 90 days we had 24 residents pass away from COVID-19, and that’s in my mind 24 too many. And so if we’re going to go with the booster program to help those who are either at more risk or if they find that we need boosters, I’m all in on making sure that we vaccinate our way out of this."
Ann Wheeler
Chair At-Large Board of County Supervisors
Get the Shot
  • Visit PWHD's websiteFacebook page, or Twitter account for mobile clinic locations, dates, and times.
  • Visit to find COVID-19 vaccination by location.
  • Make a vaccine appointment by calling Virginia’s Call Center at 877-829-4682 Monday through Friday from 8:00 am to 6:00 pm.
  • Visit to schedule your vaccination appointment with the Prince William Health District.
  • Text your zip code to 438829 (GETVAX).
If You Need to Be Tested
If you think you may have COVID-19, ways you can be tested include:

The Uninsured and Underinsured can receive free testing at
The next meeting will be
Tuesday, September 21,
at 2:00 pm and 7:30 pm.

For Public Comment Time options,
visit SpeakUp! Prince William.
Remote speakers must sign-up by
5:00 pm on Monday, September 20.
In-person speakers can sign up at the meeting.
September 7 Work Session Recap
The PWC Department of Finance provided a detailed presentation on the March 2021 American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA). The robust report included an overview of the act, reporting requirements for seven categories, and a high-level recommended allocation for the first round of funds (slide below). In addition to reviewing the presentation, you can visit PWC's ARPA webpage and submit your ARPA funding idea here.
The presentation also provided an update on the County's nine economic relief programs (slide below) funded by the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.
The PWC Departments of Facilities& Fleet Management, Public Works, and Parks, Recreation & Tourism provided brief summaries of their active County projects in a quarterly project report. You can view the individual agency reports by project online here.
County News
Upcoming Public Meeting on Transportation
Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation (DRPT) is hosting virtual public meeting to share more about the Springfield to Quantico Enhanced Public Transportation Feasibility Study (issue 75) on Tuesday, September 21, and Thursday, September 23, at 7:00 pm. This meeting follows their initial study findings meeting in July (issue 77). Please register in advance for either the September 21 or 23 meeting here.
A Significant Milestone
PWC's Small Business Project Management Program, launched in 2018 to support small business owners, startups, and entrepreneurs, has surpassed 1,000 customers! This is an important milestone for the program, an initiative within PWC's Department of Development Services. From healthcare services and professional collaborations, to restaurants and specialty stores, these entrepreneurs, startups, and small businesses have continued to innovate and help their customers adapt to the next normal.
“This milestone is a testament to each and every small business owner that has chosen Prince William County to help them create a thriving business, even in times that reflect unprecedented uncertainty and change. The Small Business Project Management Program initiative was founded on the belief that if government aligns success with that of the customers we serve, like these small business owners, we all grow better, faster, stronger, together.”
Ann Wheeler
Chair At-Large Board of County Supervisors
Required Survey
Beginning in 2021, PWC Code requires all businesses and other non-residential properties that produce trash or recycling complete an annual Business Recycling Report Survey by October 15. The Solid Waste Division of Public Works uses the information to comply with Commonwealth of Virginia recycling reporting requirements. The 10-15 minute survey should be completed by the person who is most familiar with trash and recycling collection for the property or business. Learn more here.
The following two exceptions DO NOT need to complete the report:
  • Home based county businesses.
  • Businesses located within the cities or towns.
Monthly Open Meeting
Thursday, September 23, at 6:30 pm the PWC Racial and Social Justice Commission will hold its monthly general meeting. Citizens may speak in person or remotely during Public Comment Time. For in-person, you must sign-up at the location on the evening of the meetingTo speak remotely, you must sign up by 2:00 pm on the day of the meeting. Watch the meeting live here.
Early in-person voting in PWC for the November 2 General Election starts Friday, September 17. You can find comprehensive voter information at PWC's Office of Elections, Virginia's Department of Elections, and issue 82 of the Wheeler Report. See your sample ballot here (use the Citizen Portal to learn your district).
Days, times and locations from Friday September 17 through Friday, October 8:

  • Monday through Friday, 8:30 am to 5:00 pm
  • Prince William County Office of Elections, 9250 Lee Avenue, Suite 1 in Manassas
  • Haymarket Gainesville Community Library, 14870 Lightner Road in Haymarket
  • Department of Motor Vehicle Woodbridge Customer Service Center, Elections Office, 2731 Caton Hill Road in Woodbridge
County Happenings
A one-day engagement of the new musical Queen of People's Hearts will at the Hylton Performing Arts Center Saturday, September 25. It tells the story of Princess Diana, from her fairytale wedding to Prince Charles, to her tragic death in Paris. Performances will be at 2:00 pm and 7:00 pm and the $40 tickets can be purchased here. You can learn more about the production on its Facebook page.
Enjoying Fall
Wednesday, September 22, ushers in a new season and PWC has great hikes to help you fully enjoy Fall! With more than 100 miles of trails and 38 square miles of scenic park lands, the county is an outdoor-lovers paradise. Hikers, bikers, horseback riders, and fall foliage seekers will all find a variety of trails to enjoy. VisitPWC has seven scenic hikes to get you started.
Mark Your Calendar
Occoquan's Fall Arts and Crafts Show is Saturday, September 25, and Sunday, September 26. The annual event will be in the Historic District and open from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm. This year it will feature all your favorite artisans and crafters as well as lots of new ones. Here is everything you need to know to make your open-air weekend full of fun, food, and shopping a success.
The PWC Police Department's inaugural Community Fair (issue 80) is Saturday, September 25, from 12:00 pm to 4:00 pm at the Sean Connaughton Plaza, 1 County Complex Court in Woodbridge. The event will feature food trucks, pet adoptions, fun activities, live music, and County agencies will have displays. Police work in the county will be showcased, recruiters will be present and job applications accepted. 
PWC's 13th high school, Gainesville High School, welcomed its first students on September 2. Built to serve 2,557 students, Gainesville Cardinals have:
  • Dedicated space for band, orchestra, chorus, and black box theater.
  • Visual arts spaces overlooking the courtyard.
  • Outdoor covered amphitheater.
  • Dedicated turf stadium and practice fields.
  • State of the art school media and extended learning areas.
  • Dedicated criminal justice lab space.
  • Dedicated gaming and building trades space.
All students select one of the following Academic Houses:
  • Language & Culture
  • Health & Medicine
  • Independent Study & Scholarship
  • Engineering, Math, & Automation
  • Political Science & Criminology

Within their academic house students, students select a Pathway to Global Citizenship that they wish to explore, and select coursework that is commensurate with that pathway.
County Kudos
Congratulations to C.D. Hylton High School’s boys soccer team on winning the 2020 - 2021 Virginia High School League Class 6 championship by defeating Yorktown, 3-2. This was Hylton High School's first state soccer championship since 1999. Following their win, they were invited to tour the Virginia State Capital and PWC Virginia Delegate Elizabeth Guzman read House Resolution 725 honoring the team.
Regional News
The Northern Virginia Regional Commission (NVRC) is a regional council of 13 member local governments in the Northern Virginia suburbs of Washington DC. A political subdivision (government agency) within the Commonwealth, it is the "Voice of Northern Virginia" and represents the area's interests to state government, other geographic areas of Virginia, and the metropolitan area. Its work encompasses coronavirus issues, environmental concerns, housing, census analysis, refugees, and more. The NOVA Region Dashboard provides a great source of in-depth information on the area. You can also watch the video below to quickly appreciate the scope of work they do for the area.
Ann B. Wheeler was elected Chair At-Large of the Prince William Board of County Supervisors during the 2019 General Election and assumed office on January 1, 2020. Prince William County is located 25 miles south of Washington, D.C., and is the Commonwealth of Virginia’s second-most populous county with approximately 482,000 residents.