Issue 51
Friday, February 5, 2021
Prince William County
Dear Neighbors,

I am so pleased to announce that on Tuesday, February 2, the Board of County Supevisors unanimously passed the Dar Al Noor Mosque Expansion Special Use Permit. Prince William County demonstrated with actions, not just words, that it values all residents. As one of the most diverse counties in the nation, we have the opportunity, and I believe an obligation, to be an example of fostering a culture that celebrates this diversity and ensures equality.

This issue has several important articles on recent news regarding vaccines and COVID-19, several of which were released today. This often means we don't have the details yet. While I know its the details we all want, I would rather inform you on what we do know than wait. As those important details are made public, please know we will share them as soon as we can.

In Service,
Chair Ann Wheeler
Vaccination Updates
PWC Schools Vaccination Event
Last weekend, over 2,400 PWC School teachers and staff received the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. Chair Wheeler joined Governor Northam and School Board Chair Lateef at the Saturday vaccination event held at Unity Reed High School. The doses were made available by the Novant Health UVA Health System, which operates two hospitals in PWC. As the second largest school district in the state, PWC Schools plan to hold additional events as vaccinations become available.
It's Important to be on the Waitlist
If you are currently an eligible individual in Phases 1a and 1b within the PW Health District, please use the waitlist form to request a future COVID-19 vaccine appointment. Completing this form will add you to a waitlist for when additional vaccine appointments become available. It does not automatically schedule you for an appointment.
If you, or someone you know, needs assistance filing out the online waitlist, or do not have an email address, please contact the PW Health District at (703) 872-7759.
State Update
In our last issue, we shared the Governor's announcements to greatly expand the Virginia call center and create a single state-wide vaccination registry.

Call Center Update
Tomorrow, Saturday, February 6, 750 people will begin their call center training, which will be completed in a week.

Statewide Single Vaccination Registry
Increasing the call center is a critical step in supporting Virginia's move to a new state-wide vaccination registration, which is expected to launch soon.
Until the statewide registry is operational:
  • If you are eligible to be vaccinated, it is important you go ahead and register now with the waitlist in the previous article.
  • Do not wait for the statewide registry, the above waitlist registry will be merged into the statewide.
  • You will not need to re-register when the statewide becomes available.
How is Virginia Doing
Today, Friday, February 5, Governor Ralph Northam held a COVID-19 briefing and shared new updates on Virginia:
  • The state has administered 86% of the first doses received and 67% of the total doses received - putting us 12th among other states.
  • Over 9% of the state population has received at least the first dose of the vaccine - putting us 9th among other states.
  • Virginia is on pace to deliver its one millionth vaccination this weekend - more than double the total number of positive cases we have had since our first identified positive case on March 7, 2020.
Pharmacy Partnerships
Soon, the federal government will start shipping vaccines directly to pharmacies. Governor Northam shared in his briefing today, February 5, that CVS will be the first partner in this roll-out because it has the most locations of any pharmacy in Virginia. CVS will start with 36 locations sometime late next week. More information will be available soon on the locations and how to register for vaccinations there. These vaccines are in addition to the ones the Virginia Department of Health is already receiving and are the first phase of the Federal Pharmacy Partnership. Virginia is working to add other pharmacies to the partnership.
Additional Resources
Virginia Department of Health
Prince William Health District
  • The Prince William Health District (PWHD) website
  • The PWHD COVID-19 Call Center Information Line: (703) 872-7759 operating Monday through Sunday from 9:00 am to 4:30 pm
  • Email:
COVID-19 News
January 2021 saw record numbers of COVID-19 positive cases, hospitalizations, and deaths. Fortunately, these are starting to trend down. While this information is encouraging, it is critical we don't let down our guards to this virus, especially in light of variants being identified in Virginia.
Prince William County Statistics
According to Virginia Department of Health dashboards, as of 5:00 pm Thursday, February 4:
  • The current 7-day average positivity rate is 11.7%, down from 13.9% a week ago
  • The current 7-day average number of new cases reported is 196, down from 268 a week ago
Variant Update
In our last issue, we mentioned that a case of the COVID-19 variant first identified in the United Kingdom had been identified in Virginia. This week, the Virginia Department of Health (VDH) reported a total of four cases identified in Virginia, with three of them in Northern Virginia. This variant is associated with increased person-to-person transmission. Additionally, the VDH advised that a preliminary report from experts in the United Kingdom indicates this strain causes more severe illness, but more studies are needed to confirm this finding.
South Africa Variant
The Virginia Department of Health advised today that the first case of the South Africa variant, was identified in a sample from an adult resident of Eastern Virginia. This variant, which first emerged in South Africa in late 2020, is associated with increased person-to-person transmission, making it critical for everyone to continue practicing all spread mitigation protocols. At this time, there is no evidence more severe disease is caused by this variant.
Governor Northam also made several announcements regarding school operations in his briefing today, February 5. You can read the official press release here. While we have no details yet to share on what this means in PWC, we will update you in future Wheeler Reports as decisions are made.
In the announcement the Governor stated he is:
  • Expecting every school division to make in-person learning options available by March 15, 2021, in accordance with the latest guidance.
  • Strongly encouraging school divisions to provide additional learning opportunities for any students who choose it, starting this summer.

You can read the letter Governor Northam sent to Superintendents and Members of School Boards on February 5 here.
TuesdayFebruary 9
at 2:00 pm and at 7:30 pm

For Public Comment Time options, visit 
SpeakUp! Prince William.
Remote speakers must sign-up by
5:00 pm on Monday, February 8.
In-person speakers can sign up at the meeting..
You can watch BOCS meetings live on Comcast channel 23, Verizon channel 37, and the county website. Recordings are typically available the following day on the county website.
There will be a Capital Improvement Program (CIP) presentation during the 7:30 pm meeting on February 9
The Capital Planning Process begins each summer and is as follows:
  1. Agencies are asked to update current capital projects and identify capital project needs.
  2. Agency submissions are collaboratively evaluated and funding requests prioritized.
  3. Projects are balanced against available funds.
  4. Recommendations are reviewed, modified, and sanctioned by the County Executive.
  5. The CIP is then presented to the BOCS for consideration (February 9, 2021).
  6. In the spring, work sessions and public hearings are held with the Planning Commission and the BOCS as part of the annual budget process.
  7. In late April, the BOCS adopts a capital budget for the upcoming fiscal year and a capital plan for six fiscal years.
County News
Route 28 Bypass
The PWC Department of Transportation (PWC DOT) invites you to attend a virtual information session regarding the Route 28 Bypass project on Thursday, February 18 at 7:00 pm. This session will provide information about the project's background, its current status, and the aspects that most directly impact residents. The PWC DOT will also share planned communication activities to help citizens remain informed and involved.

The latest information about the project, one of the largest infrastructure projects in the history of the County, is available on PWC DOT will continue to host information sessions as the project progresses.

  • To attend the Route 28 Bypass Virtual Meeting register here.
  • To phone in, call 301-715- 8592 and use Webinar ID: 920 6806 7097 and Passcode: 397360.
You are invited to ask questions and provide feedback during the presentation. You can also submit questions or comments by:
  • Emailing:
  • Writing: Department of Transportation, Prince William County, 5 County Complex Court, Prince William, VA 22192
  • Calling: 703-792-6273
Parenting Help
Parenting is hard and the last year has certainly presented new challenges, but there is help. The Virginia Cooperative Extension (VCE) of PWC is offering virtual Parent Education classes, in English and Spanish. Pre-registration is required and classes are $40 per individual or couple. For information on the classes and schedules:
More Winter!
According to Punxsutawney Phil, we are in for six more weeks of winter. If that has you down, the Prince William Recreation Mapper can help. Featured in issue 42, the Mapper is a user-friendly, interactive tool full of great things to do in PWC including parks, historical locations and much more.
Development Services ePortal Enhanced
The PWC Building Development Division (BDD) ePortal, introduced in 2020, now features an Auto-Generated Permit Application which will be 'auto-filled' from information entered by the customer. For now, this change applies to electronic submissions only. Customers that submit in person will still need to provide a building permit application.
If you aren't familiar with the Development Services ePortal, it provides access to many things in addition to permits, including searching:
  • For existing plans, permits, inspections, code cases, and requests
  • For activity occurring in your neighborhood
  • For rezoning, special use permits, proffer amendments, comprehensive plan amendments, and public facility reviews

User guides and videos can be found here.
A part of the Department of Development Services, the BDD enforces the Virginia Uniform Statewide Building Code to ensure the buildings in which we live, work, and play are safe. They are only one of many steps in the building construction process. Specifically, the BDD deals with reviewing building construction plans and specifications, issuing building construction permits, performing critical building construction inspections, and ensuring building code compliance.
Black History Month
The theme of 2021’s national Black History Month is
“The Black Family: Representation, Identity, and Diversity.”

This year marks the 95th observance of Black History Month, which was originally founded as Negro History Week by Virginia native and historian, Dr. Carter G. Woodson.
Carter G. Woodson was the second African American to receive a doctorate from Harvard, after W.E.B. Du Bois. Known as the "Father of Black History," Woodson dedicated his career to the field of African American history. He also wrote many historical works, including the 1933 book The Mis-Education of the Negro.
Woodson lobbied extensively for schools and organizations to participate in a special program to encourage the study of African American history, which began in February 1926 with Negro History Week. The program was later expanded and renamed Black History Month. Woodson chose February for the initial weeklong celebration to honor the birth months of abolitionist Frederick Douglass and President Abraham Lincoln.
Did you know?
The NAACP was founded on February 12, 1909, the centennial anniversary of the birth of Abraham Lincoln.
In the County
A Historic Trail
The PWC Historic Preservation Division, in collaboration with the Office of Tourism and the County Historical Commission, established the African American History Trail. The trail highlights 19 locations spread across the County, and one in the City of Manassas, focused on African American history. They include local parks, historic sites, State Parks, National Parks, local churches, and communities, many of which have never had their story told. Future plans include increasing the number of sites, adding an audio tour, and perhaps interpretive signage at each location. The Historic Preservation Division is working with PWC Schools to identify ways to introduce the trail in classes and camps focused on African American history.
See and Attend
PWC's unique and extensive African American history is being shared throughout Black History Month at many of our historic properties. You are invited to explore the history, arts, culture, and contributions of African Americans through the exhibits and events in PWC that honor and focus on the contributions Black Americans have made to American culture.
County Black History Month Program
Since the early 1990s, PWC Government has hosted a Black History Month event celebrating the diversity of our County and the United States. As in past years, we honor the 2021 national theme of the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH): "The Black Family: Representation, Identity, and Diversity." The County Black History Month Committee’s 2021 virtual program focused on the Pendeltons, a black family from the Prince William County community. You can watch them speaking openly and candidly about their lives and experiences in the video below.
The Association for the Study of African America Life and History (ASALH) has a vast array of happenings happening for their 2021 Virtual Black History Month Festival, many of which are on their extensive YouTube channel.
An Important Statement
Curtis O. Porter, Chair of the PWC Human Rights Commission, issued a statement this week. An excerpt is provided below and you can read the statement in its entirety here. The Human Rights Commission consists of nine at-large members appointed by the BOCS and advises them on issues pertaining to human and civil ​rights enforcement and concerns that arise in the community.
Statement Excerpt
"Prince William County continues to be the home of people of many races, ethnicities, cultures, national origins, religions, sexual orientations, gender identities and gender expressions. The residents of Prince William County take pride in celebrating our diversity and positive contributions that all groups have made and are making to our County. The residents of Prince William County do not and will not tolerate acts of hatred and attempts to hurt and divide our community."
Curtis O. Porter
Chair of the Prince William County Human Rights Commission
In the Commonwealth
There is a great variety of ways to celebrate Black History Month in the Commonwealth. You'll find board meetings, discussions, special exhibits, culinary arts, kid-friendly events, and special exhibits hosted by the Northam Administration and community organizations throughout the Commonwealth.
State News
The Commonwealth of Virginia’s Management Fellows (VMF) program is hiring its fourth cohort of emerging leaders. Participants selected, demonstrating a commitment to public service in state government, serve a two-year fellowship that begins on June 10, 2021 and ends on June 10, 2023. The Commonwealth developed the VMF program, which provides salary and full state benefits, in partnership with the School of Public and International Affairs (SPIA) at Virginia Tech to meet state government’s need for future leaders. The online application deadline is February 24.
Applicants must have graduated on or after May 2018 from an accredited institution with a Bachelor’s degree or demonstrate proof of a May 2021 graduation date. Master’s, JD, or PhD degree holders who completed their studies after May 2018 or are currently enrolled as students in degree-seeking graduate-level programs, are eligible.
“The VMF program has proven itself, and our Fellows are thriving in roles across state government. Right now, 27 agencies are supporting the VMF program, with more agencies onboarding to meet growing demand. The VMF program and this concept of current leaders preparing the Commonwealth’s future leaders is one of a kind in the United States.”
Grindly Johnson
Secretary of Administration
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 470,000 residents.