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Issue 75
Friday, July 23, 2021
Prince William County
Dear Neighbors,

Unlike 2020, this year seems to be marching to the beat of its own double-time drum. August is just around the corner and with the Virginia's 3-Day Sales Tax Holiday happening August 6 through 8, it becomes all about back-to-school.

While it's wonderful to have some normalcy to the rhythms of life again, enjoy the rest of your summer. After all, there are so many great things to do in Prince William County! If you need some idea inspiration, go to Visit Prince William Virginia and read "10 Ways to Love Your Summer in Prince William, Virginia" (teaser alert - one of them is featured in an article below).

So yes, let's look forward to times we missed last year, but also be sure to enjoy the time we have right now.

In Service,
Chair Ann Wheeler
Chair's Calendar
Press Conference on Mental Heath Centers
Tuesday, July 20, Chair Wheeler spoke at a press conference calling on Governor Ralph Northam and the General Assembly to devote $47 million of American Rescue Plan funds toward building community mental health centers across Virginia. These facilities can help fill some of the gaps in care caused by staffing shortages in the state’s strained psychiatric hospital system. They will also help keep people experiencing mental health episodes out of jail or hospital emergency rooms.
Mental Health Update in PWC

At the Tuesday, July 20, meeting the BOCS heard an update on Directive #21-23, Additional Mental Health Service, which calls for staff to evaluate establishing a Crisis Stabilization Unit and Trauma Treatment Program in PWC. The update included the recommendation to establish a Crisis Receiving and Stabilization Services Center with sixteen beds and sixteen 23-hour observation recliners for Adults and eight beds and eight 23-hour recliners for Youth. The update was met with unanimous support from the BOCS to proceed.
On Saturday, July 17, Chair Wheeler participated in a groundbreaking ceremony for the new All Dulles Area Muslim Society (ADAMS Center) campus in Gainesville. Over the past three decades, the ADAMS Center has grown into one of the largest Muslim communities in the Washington, D.C. area. The main campus is in Sterling. There is also a full-service campus in Ashburn and Chantilly, as well as six satellite campuses located along the Route 267 and Route 28 corridors. Gainesville will be a third full service campus.
Memorial Service
On Saturday, July 17, Chair Wheeler attended the memorial service for Albert "Al" Brooks Sr. at the Ebenezer Baptist Church in Woodbridge. Mr. Brooks, typically wearing a three-piece suit or freshly pressed dress shirt and tie, was know for his volunteer work at the Woodbridge DMV asking people if they were registered to vote. He also was a fierce champion of electing more people of color at both the local and state levels. Mr. Brooks passed on March 25 but due to COVID-19, his family held a small service for him in April. 
A Celebration
On Tuesday, July 20, Chair Wheeler attended Eid al-Adha at the Muslim Association of Virginia. Also known as the "Feast of the Sacrifice," Eid al-Adha is one of Islam's most important holidays and takes place in the 12th month of the Islamic lunar calendar. The celebration marks the trial faced by Prophet Ibrahim, known as Abraham in Christianity and Judaism, when God told him sacrifice his son, Ishmael, as a test of his obedience and submission. According to Islamic teaching, God replaced Ishmael with a sheep before the event could take place.
Mobile Clinics
The Prince William Health District (PWHD) holds walk up, mobile clinics every Tuesday and Thursday in the afternoon and/or evening. Locations and times are published in advance and can be found on the PWHD website, Facebook page, and Twitter account.
Request a Mobile Clinic
Organizations in Greater PWC can request a mobile vaccination clinic from PWHD! Complete the form at PWHD Vax Request and you will be contacted within 5 business days. If you have a preferred clinic date, PWHD needs at least 2 weeks advance notice.
Make an Appointment
  • 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.
The next meeting will be
Tuesday, August 3, at 2:00 pm.

Following this meeting, the
Board will be on summer recess through Labor Day.

The Board will reconvene after the recess on Tuesday, September 7,
at 2:00 pm and 7:30 pm.
Some Actions by the BOCS at the
Tuesday, July 20, Meeting
Strategy Adopted
Adopted the Prince William County 2021 – 2024 Strategic Plan (pages 3 through 24) (issue 65 and issue 69). The plan identifies goals, objectives, action strategies, and key performance indicators for the following:
  1. Health, Wellbeing & Human Services
  2. Safe & Secure Community
  3. Resilient Economy
  4. Quality Education & Workforce Development
  5. Environmental Conservation
  6. Sustainable Growth
  7. Transportation & Mobility
Grant Funding for Renaming
Authorized and established the Route 1 Refresh Grant Program and transferred $3,000,000 dollars to the PWC Industrial Development Authority for its implementation. The Route 1 Grant program has been established to aid businesses located along the Route 1 corridor that will be financially impacted by the renaming of Route 1 / Jefferson Davis Highway to Richmond Highway.
Libraries and Senior Center Funding
Authorized the transfer, budget, and appropriation of $930,000 from the Capital Reserve Fund to replace the existing Potomac Community Library, build a new Woodbridge Community Library, and build a new Woodbridge Senior Center. The existing Woodbridge Senior Center, which was built in the early 1980s and the Potomac Community Library, which opened in 1975. are no longer able to meet the needs of the citizens and the forecasted population growth. Each of the projects will receive $310,000.
Master Police Officer Harris and Police Officer Paul received the proclamation.
Proclaimed Tuesday, August 3, as National Night Out in Prince William County. The proclamation noted police-community partnerships, neighborhood safety and awareness, and cooperation are important themes of the National Night Out program. It also called upon all citizens to join the PWC Police Department in supporting the “38th Annual National Night Out.” This year NNO will be from 5:00 pm to 8:00 pm. Learn more in issue 74 and here.
PWC Water 101
Your Drinking Water
Most people know the PWC Service Authority is responsible for our drinking water, but have you ever thought about where it comes from?

In PWC, we get:
  • 89% of our drinking water comes from surface sources.
  • 11% of our drinking water comes from ground water sources.
Surface Water
Surface Water originates mostly from rainfall replenishing our streams, rivers and reservoirs. A reservoir is a large natural or man-made lake used as a source of water supply. In PWC surface water comes either from Lake Manassas or the Occoquan Reservoir.

Ground Water
Ground water also originates mostly from rainfall. However, this water is absorbed by the earth’s surface making its way into underground rock/gravel formations. This is our source of well water. In PWC groundwater serves mostly private wells.
A watershed is an area of land that collects and drains rainfall to a common outlet such as a point along a stream channel, the mouth of a river, or the outflow from a reservoir. It can be small like a backyard or large like the Chesapeake Bay watershed. PWC is generally divided into 10 major watersheds. If you are unsure which watershed is yours, you can use this online tool to enter your address and identify your watershed.
An aquifer is a body of porous rock below the ground surface saturated with groundwater. There are 4 major aquifers in PWC. Each aquifer is an important contributor to our groundwater water supply.
Visit the Service Authority website to learn more about what they do and our water in PWC, including the 2021 Water Quality Report.
County News
Interested in enhanced transit options between Franconia-Springfield Metro station and Quantico Marine Base? Join the Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation virtual meeting on Tuesday, July 27 at 7 pm to learn about their initial study results. Options could include additional express bus services, increased VRE commuter rail expansion, Bus Rapid Transit (BRT), or an extension of Metrorail. Learn more and register in advance here.
Going Electric
This fall some of PWC School students will be riding in electric school buses. Made possible through the Dominion Electric School Bus program grant funding across the commonwealth, the PWC busses are being used this summer for school to school shuttles and field trips. One important difference is an electric bus doesn't sound like the traditional diesel bus. The community will need to learn to look for the new electric buses in addition to listening for the diesel ones. Watch the video below to see the buses in action and learn more.
A New Challenge
PWC Department of Parks, Recreation & Tourism opened its new Warrior Challenge Course Wednesday, July 21. The warrior-style outdoor obstacle course is located at Locust Shade Park, 4701 Locust Shade Drive in Triangle, just 1.5 miles from Marine Corp Base Quantico. The course includes equipment for children 2-5 so the whole family can get involved! There is accessible parking, as well as a series of handicap ramps to connecting it to the existing tennis courts, pavilion, and playground. The project was made possible through a generous grant from the Defense Community Infrastructure Program,
Sunflower Season
Burnside Farms will open the 2021 Summer of Sunflowers next week! By planting over 30 varieties of "cutting" sunflowers on 15 acres in successive crop, it hopes to have sunflowers blooming until labor day or later. It also has one of the nation's only sunflower mazes! Covering about 5 acres, the maze only blooms for about two weeks and varies from year to year. This is a very popular annual event, so keep an eye on its Facebook and Instagram accounts for next week's opening day announcement and the Maze dates. You can pre-purchased discounted tickets will be on the website and social media or purchase full price tickets at the gate this year. To get a "bird's eye" view of the event, check out the video from last year below!
County Kudos
PWC won third place in the nation in the 2021 annual Digital Counties Survey for the 250,000-499,999 population category. The survey, conducted by the Center for Digital Government in partnership with the National Association of Counties, identifies the best technology practices among U.S. counties. The PWC Department of Information Technology’s Strategic Plan and its $24.9 million IT modernization effort initiatives were cited as key reasons that solidified the win.
Some of the department's initiatives include:
  • Deploying more than 4,000 Wi-Fi hot spots to families with school-aged children to help the county school system transition to distance learning. 
  • Developing a comprehensive succession plan as well as training existing staff across gap areas. 
  • Taking a “built in” cybersecurity focus to every project and implementing two key cybersecurity platforms to expand monitoring and response capabilities.
  • Addressing legacy technology pain points and transitioning to more functional systems.
  • Tracking and developing emerging technologies through the PWC Lab, which looks at connected infrastructure and other new tech.
  • Multi-jurisdictional, cooperative efforts on interoperability, emergency communications, information sharing, and regional grants.
Regional News
Issue 69 shared the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments work on fair housing. In collaboration with Challenging Racism, it has been hosting a series of free, public dialogue sessions on the intersection of housing, transportation, environment, and race. These sessions will help inform a regional fair housing plan. The program will engage participants, while learning about the history of housing and race. It will also include small group discussion and storytellers from a variety of backgrounds. If you haven't attended one of these discussions, you can still register here for the last one on Saturday, July 31, from 9:30 am to 12:00 noon.
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.