Chesterfield County, Virginia's Weekly E-Newsletter
Tuesday, June 2, 2020
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County Response to COVID-19
Governor Announces
Phase Two Guidelines to
Further Ease Public Health Restrictions
Governor Ralph Northam today signed  Executive Order Sixty-Five  and presented the second phase of the “ Forward Virginia ” plan to continue safely and gradually easing public health restrictions while containing the spread of COVID-19. The Governor also  amended Executive Order Sixty-One  directing Northern Virginia and the City of Richmond to remain in Phase One.

Most of Virginia is expected to enter  Phase Two  on Friday, June 5, as key statewide health metrics continue to show positive signs. Virginia’s hospital bed capacity remains stable, the percentage of people hospitalized with a positive or pending COVID-19 test is trending downward, no hospitals are reporting PPE shortages and the percent of positive tests continues to trend downward as testing increases. The Governor and Virginia public health officials will continue to evaluate data based on the indicators laid out in April.
Executive Order Sixty-Five modifies public health guidance in Executive Order Sixty-One and Sixty-Two and establishes guidelines for Phase Two. Northern Virginia and the City of Richmond entered Phase One on Friday, May 29, and will remain in Phase One to allow for additional monitoring of health data. Accomack County delayed reopening due to outbreaks in poultry plants, which have largely been controlled through rigorous testing. Accomack County will move to Phase Two with the rest of the Commonwealth, on Friday, June 5.

Under Phase Two, the Commonwealth will maintain a Safer at Home strategy with continued recommendations for social distancing, teleworking and requiring individuals to wear face coverings in indoor public settings. The maximum number of individuals permitted in a social gathering will increase from 10 to 50 people. All businesses should still adhere to physical distancing guidelines, frequently clean and sanitize high contact surfaces and continue enhanced workplace safety measures. 

Restaurant and beverage establishments may offer indoor dining at 50 percent occupancy, fitness centers may open indoor areas at 30 percent occupancy and certain recreation and entertainment venues without shared equipment may open with restrictions. These venues include museums, zoos, aquariums, botanical gardens and outdoor concert, sporting and performing arts venues. Swimming pools may also expand operations to both indoor and outdoor exercise, diving and swim instruction.

The current guidelines for religious services, non-essential retail and personal grooming services will largely remain the same in Phase Two. Overnight summer camps, most indoor entertainment venues, amusement parks, fairs and carnivals will also remain closed in Phase Two.

Visit  for more information and answers to frequently asked questions.

Governor Announces
Face Covering Requirement and
Workplace Safety Regulations
Governor Ralph Northam has signed  Executive Order Sixty-Three , requiring Virginians to wear face coverings in public indoor settings to help contain the spread of the novel coronavirus. The Governor directed the Department of Labor and Industry to develop emergency temporary standards to prevent workplace exposure to COVID-19. Governor Northam also signed an  amended Executive Order Fifty-One , extending Virginia’s state of emergency declaration.

The new executive order supports previous actions the Governor has taken to respond to COVID-19 in Virginia and ensures workers and consumers are protected as the Commonwealth gradually eases public health restrictions. The Governor’s statewide requirement for wearing face coverings is grounded in science and data, including recommendations from the  Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)  that individuals should wear face coverings in public settings. Face coverings do not take the place of public health guidelines to maintain six feet of physical distancing, increase cleaning and sanitation and wash hands regularly.

A face covering includes anything that covers your nose and mouth, such as a mask, scarf or bandana. Medical-grade masks and personal protective equipment (PPE) should be reserved for health care professionals. Under the Governor’s executive order, any person age ten and older must wear a mask or face covering at all times while entering, exiting, traveling through and spending time in the following public settings:

  • Personal care and grooming businesses
  • Essential and non-essential brick and mortar retail including grocery stores and pharmacies
  • Food and beverage establishments
  • Entertainment or public amusement establishments when permitted to open
  • Train stations, bus stations and on intrastate public transportation, including in waiting or congregating areas
  • State and local government buildings and areas where the public accesses services
  • Any indoor space shared by groups of people who may congregate within six feet of one another or who are in close proximity to each other for more than ten minutes

Exemptions to these guidelines include while eating and drinking at a food and beverage establishment; individuals who are exercising; children under the age of two; a person seeking to communicate with a hearing-impaired person, for which the mouth needs to be visible; and anyone with a health condition that keeps them from wearing a face covering. Children over the age of two are strongly encouraged to wear a face covering to the extent possible.

Chesterfield Board of Supervisors
Focus on COVID-19 Resources
and Economic Recovery
During its regularly scheduled  May 27 virtual meeting , the Chesterfield County Board of Supervisors   received comprehensive updates  on economic conditions, along with several initiatives departments are taking to keep residents and visitors of county facilities safe during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The updates come as the Board of Supervisors evaluates several measures to begin safely opening county offices and facilities to the public, while maintaining social distancing measures outlined by the  Virginia Department of Health  (VDH) and the  Centers for Disease Control and Prevention  (CDC) to control the spread of COVID-19 in Chesterfield.

View the video  of the complete COVID-19 update provided during the May 27 meeting. 
Operational Services 

Scott Zaremba, deputy county administrator of Community Operations, told the Board of Supervisors that  his team has worked on putting phase one of its plan to open some county offices   and facilities into effect.

New standard procedures will include: Rigorous cleaning and disinfecting of several county buildings, monitoring the need for personal protective equipment for employees and reconfiguring spaces to ensure limited personal contact and longevity in county buildings.

Several services and amenities, including the opening of the libraries of North Courthouse Road at 325 Courthouse Road, Central at 7051 Lucy Corr Blvd. and Meadowdale at 4301 Meadowdale Blvd., along with the county’s recreational centers, no later than Monday, June 15.

Meanwhile, virtual resources for residents, businesses and visitors will remain in place, which include hosting several meetings via Microsoft Teams. A variety of virtual programing and scheduling for county libraries and Parks and Recreation also have been implemented, along with using electronic signing tools to complete transactions and court documentation.

Residents and visitors must adhere to state and federal social distancing measures while phasing in the opening of county offices.

County courts have already placed into action a series of social distancing and safety measures for visitors and employees starting  May 18  to address an increase to cases in the docket.
Business Help 

Garrett Hart, Chesterfield Economic Development director, was joined by Danielle Fitz-Hugh, Chesterfield Chamber of Commerce President and CEO, to  discuss measures both entities are taking to help county businesses  during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Chesterfield Economic Development is set to launch its  Back In Business  grant program after receiving $5 million as part of the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act.
Eligible businesses could receive a $10,000 grant to help with a variety of costs and expenses incurred by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Applications for the Back in Business grant are set to launch in early June.

Meanwhile, Hart and Fitz-Hugh gave updates on several other business initiatives, which included its  Chesterfield Eats To Go   campaign, an online GIS map that features more than 200 restaurants and encourages residents to support local eateries by ordering out for breakfast, lunch and dinner to-go, and its  Let’s Take It Outside, Chesterfield! initiative ,  a one-stop shop for local restaurant operators to assist them with plans to add more outdoor dining space to their establishments, along with guidelines for operations in accordance with the state’s  Forward Virginia  initiative to reopen the commonwealth in phases. 

Relaunch Chesterfield , a joint initiative between the Chesterfield Chamber and Chesterfield Economic Development, was created to help local business by providing insight and input from business sector groups on reopening issues.

Chesterfield also is involved with  ForwardRVA , a regional coalition of business, community and governmental leaders that’s focused on creating an innovative reopening and planning framework for businesses in greater Richmond
Economic Conditions

Matt Harris, deputy county administrator for Finance and Administration, informed the Board of Supervisors of  new updates related to the county’s economic indicators  and amended fiscal 2021 budget.

Chesterfield County is set to receive $30.8 million in federal CARES Act funding for expenses and initiatives related to the COVID-19 pandemic by early June. This also includes an additional $861,300 in Community Block Grant Funding that will be applied to the amended fiscal 2021 budget to help further the county’s mission for affordable housing.

Harris said about $5 million of the $30.8 million is being allocated to the Chesterfield Economic Development’s  Back in Business  grant program. The remaining balance disbursement is subject for review pending eligible department requests.

None of the CARES Act money can be used to offset revenue budget shortfalls.

Overall, the fiscal 2021 amended budget is $721.8 million, down from $723.7 million adopted budget because of a decrease in mostly state revenue – a slight hit Harris said the county was able to absorb through  cost cutting measures  taken in April. 

The amended budget takes into consideration potential economic headwinds caused by the COVID-19, including an increase in unemployment.

While capital projects for infrastructure and schools remain a priority, a bond referendum is on hold indefinitely until economic conditions improve. However, Harris emphasized that several capital improvement projects that have been approved and budgeted, including several in fiscal 2021, are underway and will continue.  
Safety Update 

Chesterfield Fire Chief Loy Senter  explained to the Board of Supervisors  that COVID-19-related emergency call volumes are beginning fall, with overall 911 call volumes beginning to normalize throughout the county.
The average call volume for COVID-19-related emergencies last month was 21.

Meanwhile, emergency personnel are ramping up efforts to get residents tested through a mix of public and private sources, which includes working with the Chesterfield Health District to help establish free testing sites throughout the county. 

As the focus to increase testing continues, so does the county’s mission to secure personal protective equipment (PPE). Senter said the PPE stock is improving thanks to several state initiatives and the generosity of county residents either donating or crafting a variety of PPE for public service workers.

The Chesterfield County Fairgrounds has served as a regional PPE distribution point and is one of three sites in the state to host a  Battelle Critical Care Decontamination System ™ (CCDS) , which uses concentrated hydrogen peroxide vapors in a self-contained chamber to remove contaminants from N95 or equivalent respirators.
Community Outreach and Assistance 

Emily Ashley, Citizen Information and Resources (CIR) director, said her department has been busy  working with local and regional community partner s  to ensure residents are receiving the help they need and desire during these unprecedented times.

To keep residents engaged with their community, neighbors and government, the department has launched a series of programs targeting residents with families, such as  Chesterfield 101 , a local government education program aimed at high school-aged students that went virtual for the first time earlier this month, and its  Letters of Love  campaign, which collected drawings, cards and letters for residents in senior living facilities.

Despite the pandemic, Ashley said CIR is working to connect volunteers with a variety of community partners that include the Chesterfield Food Bank, Hands on Greater Richmond and the YMCA.

Aside from community outreach, the department is working closely with Chesterfield-Colonial Heights Social Services and Chesterfield Mental Health Support Services to make sure residents have plenty of mental health resources and assistance during this time. That includes moving several mental health-related appointments over the telephone and through tele-health portals.  
Chesterfield Health District Update

This excerpt video  features the report from  Chesterfield Health District   Director  Dr. Alexander Samuel  on COVID-19 in our community.  
Chesterfield County Announces $5M
for Back in Business Grant Program
At the direction of the  Board of Supervisors , Chesterfield County, in partnership with the  Chesterfield Chamber of Commerce , is launching the  Back in Business (BiB) grant program  to  support small businesses  negatively affected by COVID-19. The $10,000 grants are designed to provide immediate relief to businesses and to help them prepare for reopening under the guidelines of  Forward Virginia .

The $5 million dollars dedicated for the grant program will come from the federal funding Chesterfield County received from the  Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act

Applicants will be required to demonstrate that they are eligible, that they were operational pre-COVID-19 and that they are suffering negative impacts from COVID-19 closures. Final eligibility criteria for the program and the application process is expected to be confirmed by the end of May and applications are anticipated to be open in early June. 

Details on the program, as they become available, can be found at .
ForwardRVA to Support Reopening of Richmond Region
On May 27 and 28, ForwardRVA provided free Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) starter toolkits for RVA’s small, local, retail and restaurant businesses with 25 or fewer employees that have remained open or are planning a future reopening. The toolkits included face masks, gloves, hand sanitizer, “We’re Open” signage and important safety information.
ForwardRVA Toolkit contents.
Board of Supervisors Chair Leslie Haley
hands out "We're Open" signs and
ForwardRVA toolkits on Wednesday, May 27
at John Tyler Community College.
The second round of toolkits will be available on Wednesday, June 3 from 1-5 p.m on a first-come-first-served basis. No registration required. Visit   for available pickup locations and  more information on the PPE Starter Toolkits, ForwardRVA and Forward Virginia.

ForwardRVA, a coalition focused on creating an innovative reopening and planning framework, is comprised of Richmond region business, community and governmental leaders with the support of ChamberRVA . In the days and weeks ahead, ForwardRVA will share tools and resources, which will include the perspectives of RVA’s restaurateurs, retailers and small business owners. ForwardRVA’s approach to reopening aligns with Governor Northam’s  Forward Virginia  blueprint. Both follow  Centers for Disease Control and Prevention  (CDC) guidelines.
Chesterfield County Public Schools
Meals Update
As  Chesterfield County Public Schools   (CCPS) begins to shift into summer meals support, please note that there will be changes to days, times and some distribution locations in the upcoming weeks. To better serve our families, a few school sites and off-site locations began on June 1.

Please read the  CCPS news release  regarding Food and Nutrition Services meal plan for students from June 1-11. More information will be coming at a later date regarding the final transition into summer meals support locations and times that will begin on June 15 and go through August 31.
Chesterfield Health Department -
Free COVID-19 Testing
As part of a statewide push to increase testing across the commonwealth, the  Chesterfield Health Department  is hosting another round of free COVID-19 testing events at two locations:

Wednesday, June 10, 2020, 9–11 a.m. 
Falling Creek Ironworks Park
6407 Jefferson Davis Highway

Wednesday, June 17, 2020, 9–11 a.m. 
Stonebridge Recreation Center
230 Karl Linn Drive

Testing is for individuals who have COVID-19 symptoms and is free for uninsured or underinsured persons.
While some appointments will be reserved for walk-ups that morning, testing is limited and appointments should be made prior to arriving.

Residents who may be experiencing COVID-19 symptoms as defined by the  Virginia Department of Health  (VDH) or the  Centers for Disease Control and Prevention  (CDC), should call the Chesterfield Health Department at 804-318-8207. 

Spanish speaking staff also will be present during the testing event.
Additional Resources During COVID-19
Chesterfield’s Deputy County Administrator
for Human Services Announces Retirement
After 25 years with Chesterfield County, Deputy County Administrator for Human Services Sarah C. Snead announced her plans to retire, effective October 1. Snead, whose career in human services spans nearly five decades, has served as deputy county administrator since July 2010.

“It’s been a remarkable journey,” Snead said. “I have been incredibly fortunate to work with dedicated and talented Chesterfield County team members including each of the leaders of Human Services Departments. There are so many people capable of upholding all the good work we have started.”

As deputy county administrator for Human Services, she oversees the departments of Citizen Information and Resources, Community Corrections Services, Drug Courts, Juvenile Justice Services, which includes the Juvenile Detention Center, an array of community-based juvenile justice programs, and the Davis Child Advocacy Center, Mental Health Support Services and Social Services.

Before becoming deputy county administrator, she served as director of Chesterfield-Colonial Heights Department of Social Services, where in that role, she worked with its nine-member board to implement new and existing policy measures, while insuring some of the county’s most vulnerable population received proper benefits and treatment.

“Sarah’s diligent dedication to some of the county’s most vulnerable residents is a testament to her commitment as a public servant,” said Dr. Joe Casey, county administrator. “Her commitment and leadership has helped several county departments address important community needs through lasting partnerships.”

Upon retirement, Snead said she plans to remain active in the greater Richmond community, while being the primary caretaker to her immediate family members. She also is seeking to pursue several mentoring opportunities for people looking to advance their career within the human services profession.

“Chesterfield has such a rich history and amazing assets” Snead said. “I’m glad I have had the opportunity to help and serve a community I have come to appreciate and love.”

A nationwide recruitment process will occur over the summer. Snead’s successor is expected to be announced by September.

Read the full news release  to learn more about all of Snead's contributions to the Chesterfield community.
Chesterfield Grants Grace Period for Penalties
and Interest on Personal Property Tax Payments
Through July 31;
Treasurer’s Office Reopened June 1
While personal property taxes and the first half of real estate taxes are still due Friday, June 5, 2020, the Chesterfield Board of Supervisors  voted on May 27 to grant a grace period  through Friday, July 31, 2020 during which penalties and interest will not be assessed for late personal property tax payments. The grace period also applies to business personal property taxes, but it does not apply to real estate taxes.

The move comes as the Chesterfield County Treasurer’s Office opened in a limited capacity on Monday, June 1 to accept in-person tax payments, preferably from residents wishing to pay by cash. Personal property taxes and first-half real estate taxes are due by 11:59 p.m. on Friday, June 5, and payments made by mail must have a postmark of no later than June 5. The office is open from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. but those wishing to make a cash tax payment are asked to be in line by 4 p.m. at the latest.

The Treasurer’s Office urges citizens, if able, to utilize a  non-cash, remote method of payment , including paying online, through online banking, by phone, by mail, through an automatic payment service or via a drive-thru drop box located in the parking lot of the Chesterfield County Administration building, 9901 Lori Road, Chesterfield, VA 23832.

Tax statements were mailed by the Chesterfield Treasurer’s Office to applicable citizens and businesses beginning Friday, April 17. Tax balances may also be viewed through the  Treasurer Office’s online payment portal  using a tax account number, property address or map parcel number, all of which are listed on the tax statement.

Health and Safety Guidelines
The Department of Risk Management and the Department of General Services have worked with both the Office of the Treasurer and the Office of the Commissioner of the Revenue to implement best public health practices outlined by the  Centers for Disease Control and Prevention  (CDC), the  Virginia Department of Health  (VDH), the  Occupational Safety and Health Administration  (OSHA) and Gov. Northam’s  Guidelines for All Business Sectors . This includes:

  • Establishing policies and practices for physical distancing between co-workers and between members of the public.
  • Installing signage and floor markings to remind personnel of new health and safety procedures, including a need for a minimum of 6 feet of physical distancing in areas where individuals may congregate, especially at entrances, in seating areas and in check-out lines.
  • Limiting the occupancy of physical spaces to ensure that adequate physical distancing can be maintained at all times.
  • Implementing enhanced and frequent cleaning and disinfection of frequently-touched surfaces.
  • Establishing designated work entrances to buildings to control pedestrian flow, maintaining spatial distancing and reducing employee and citizen person-to-person physical contact.
  • Requiring facial coverings to be worn by all personnel in the public spaces of the building. Members of the public not wearing a facial covering inside a public building as required the Governor’s Executive Order Sixty-Three will be asked by county staff to leave until they are able to secure one.
  • Requiring employees to certify that they will perform a self-assessment of their health and exposure status, including monitoring their symptoms and checking their temperature at the beginning of each day before coming to work. If they present any symptoms or feel ill, they are not to come to work.

Citizens using the on-site drop box may request to receive a receipt by writing “receipt requested” on their invoice coupon, and a receipt will be mailed to the address on the account. If an email address is provided, the Treasurer’s Office will email the receipt to that address.

Citizens who pay online or over the phone will receive a payment confirmation number, which acts as a receipt.

Tax Questions
The Treasurer’s Office is responsible for the dissemination of tax invoices and the collection of tax payments. Taxpayers with questions regarding the assessment of taxes should contact:

  • For personal property tax assessment questions, call the Office of the Commissioner of the Revenue at 804-748-1281.
  • For real estate tax assessment questions, call the Real Estate Assessor’s Office, 804-748-1321.
  • If taxpayers have questions about paying their taxes, they may contact the Treasurer’s Office, 804-748-1201.

Please note that first-half real estate taxes not paid on or before the June 5 deadline and personal property taxes not paid on or before July 31  may be subject to a late payment penalty and/or interest .

For more information on tax payment options and tax payment plans,  read the full news release.
A Message from the
Chesterfield County Police Department
The  Chesterfield County Police Department and Chesterfield County Government ma intain a robust social media presence. Please refer to these resources - and only these resources - for information relating to any known threats, hazards or informational updates. We cannot confirm validity from any other sources.

We will always do what we can to communicate with you clearly and often and remain committed to keeping you informed.
Chesterfield - Employee Excellence:
Fire and EMS;
Henricus Historical Park
These unprecedented times have forced innovative adaptations in how Chesterfield County continues to keep resources and services available for our citizens, businesses and employees. Those adaptations have taken multiple forms, from teleworking to completely new processes, and many employees are being redeployed in other areas to keep essential functions operating.

Over the next few weeks, we'll be gathering stories to highlight our employees’ innovative contributions and the many services that are still available to our citizens. We are all adjusting to this "new norm" in which we find ourselves, but, rest assured, Chesterfield is still open for business and serving citizens.
Fire and EMS
As the COVID-19 pandemic evolved, Chesterfield’s  Department of Fire and EMS  faced a difficult situation: continuing to provide vital service to the community while protecting both employees and citizens from the virus. 

In preparation, Fire and EMS had stocked thousands of medical-grade N95 masks to use through the crisis. Unfortunately, a problem arose as many of the masks in stock began experiencing elastic band failures that prevented them from being properly affixed to a wearer’s face.  

The technical failure, which had been occurring in some N95 masks across the nation, left thousands of mask unusable. 
However, Christy Shires, an administrative secretary for the department’s Resource Management Division, was able to devise a solution. 
Clockwise, from left: Broken mask; Kelly Jordan, Resource Management Division logistics supervisor; Fixed mask; Christy Shires, Resource Management Division administrative secretary
An avid sewer and embroiderer, Shires determined a way to re-sew new elastic bands into the masks, making them functional once again. Shires and Kelly Jordan, a logistics supervisors with the Resource Management Division, transformed their offices into makeshift sewing centers, using their own machines to fix the masks. 

Pouring hours into this task, Shires, Jordan and a team of volunteers fixed nearly 2,500 masks, helping protect the health of employees and the public on a massive scale. 
The county applauds this display of creativity, dedication and innovation. 

To learn more about the work of our Department of Fire and EMS, visit the  department’s webpage  or visit their  Facebook page .
Henricus Historical Park
When the COVID-19 pandemic forced  Henricus Historical Park  to suspend its in-person camps and live educational experiences, Henricus staff pivoted to continue bringing history into the homes of Chesterfield families. 

Henricus Historical Park, a living museum that recreates life in the second successful English settlement and the Powhatan Indian site of Arrohateck, has increased its social media activity on  Facebook Instagram  and  YouTube  to teach followers historical lessons, provide historical demonstrations and share engaging, family-friendly activities.  
Randall Benton, a military interpreter who has worked with Henricus Historical Park for several years, is hard at work creating a historically-accurate, 16th century leather doublet from home. While Benton would normally create this piece onsite for park visitors, he is instead crafting remotely while the park shares photos of his work on Facebook. 

Like Benton, Education Manager Rebecca Owen is keeping history alive by creating videos aimed at educating kids about local history while keeping them engaged. Her at-home activities have taught children about 17th century painter John White while encouraging them to create their own art, informed viewers about 17th century clothes-making while showing them how to sew and helped families create scented herb pillows similar to those said to have been used since the Middle Ages. 

According to Owen, Henricus staff is motivated by sharing their passion for history with others in fun, accessible ways. 

“The Education Department at Henricus Historical Park is committed to sharing the rich history of our site in ways that are meaningful and safe for our community members,” said Owen. “We are passionate about creating engaging, hands-on activities that allow young – or young at heart! – historians to have a real, tactile connection with the past, right from their own home!"

And while Henricus’s virtual programming has proven successful, the park is now preparing to safely reopen to visitors on Wednesday, June 3. Precautions implemented include encouraging the use of facial coverings and credit card payments, creation of a one-way travel pattern to manage the flow of visitors to the site and the installation of barriers to create a buffer between the historical interpreters and guests. 

The park will also be operating on a new schedule: Wednesday through Sunday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
For more information about Henricus Historical Park and the new operating procedures, visit .
Remember to Complete Your U.S. Census!
While April 1 was Census Day, Chesterfield encourages residents who have not yet completed their 2020 U.S. Census to do so as soon as possible.

Completing the Census is easy!
Households should have received official U.S. Census Bureau mail with detailed information on how to respond to the 2020 U.S. Census online, by phone or by mail.

Pay close to attention to the unique number given to your household and be prepared to use it during your response.

The 2020 U.S. Census is mandatory and responses are based upon the members of a household as of April 1 (Census Day).
To learn more about the 2020 U.S. Census, visit the official website at
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