Earlier today, I joined my colleagues for an emergency meeting of the Board of Supervisors where we voted to declare a local emergency due to the COVID-19 coronavirus situation. This declaration will streamline application for state and federal relief funds, allow small businesses to apply for emergency Small Business Administration loans, and empower our county government to respond to this emergency. 

There are currently 12 presumptive positive cases of COVID-19 in Fairfax County, all related to recent international travel or previously-identified cases. Our Health Department continues to conduct contact investigations with all identified cases to prevent further spread. I will continue to keep you informed as we manage through this challenge. 

There are several important updates in today’s Advisory.

  • Fairfax County Declaration of Emergency
  • New guidelines to avoid gatherings of more than 10 people
  • Self-Quarantine for those with chronic conditions or over 65
  • Metro Service reduced to essential travel
  • Additional FCPS food distribution locations
  • Fairfax County senior tax relief deadline extended
  • Cancellation of upcoming VDOT Braddock District Repaving Meeting

-Supervisor James Walkinshaw
Health Department Update
The Fairfax County Health Department is reporting two additional presumptive positive cases of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in Fairfax County. 

The Health Department is working closely with the Virginia Department of Health and local health care providers to identify additional people who came in close contact with these individuals in order to decrease the spread of the illness. Those identified as close contacts will be self-quarantined and actively monitored for fever and respiratory symptoms. If they start experiencing symptoms, they will immediately undergo testing.

The total number of cases in the Fairfax Health District is now 12. The results are considered presumptive, pending confirmation by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which has not yet occurred for any of the cases.

The coronavirus that causes COVID-19 can cause mild to more severe respiratory illness. Symptoms include fever, cough, and difficulty breathing. Symptoms appear within 14 days of being exposed to an infectious person. COVID-19 spreads primarily through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.

Click here for more information.
At its meeting today, Tuesday, March 17, the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors declared a local state of emergency in response to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) situation. Today’s action follows Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam’s declaration of a state of emergency on March 12, and a national emergency declaration by President Donald Trump on March 13.

The local emergency declaration is primarily a financial mechanism that provides greater flexibility and authority for the county in requesting state & federal emergency funding and purchasing hard-to-find resources and supplies. It also increases the authorities granted to the county to protect the health and safety of the community and provide emergency assistance in such a rapidly evolving incident.

Supervisors present at the meeting noted that counties (unlike states and the District of Columbia) do not have the authority to close businesses or enact new law enforcement measures, regardless of a declaration of emergency.
Governor Ralph Northam today announced additional steps to help Virginians impacted by novel coronavirus, or COVID-19, stop the spread of the virus in the Commonwealth, and protect public health. 

Further Reducing Public Gatherings
Governor Northam told Virginians to avoid non-essential gatherings of more than 10 people, per federal guidelines. This does not include normal operations at essential services such as manufacturers, distribution centers, airports, bus and train stations, medical facilities, grocery stores, or pharmacies.

Department of Motor Vehicle Office Closures

Online services will remain available, and anyone needing to renew a license or vehicle registration is encouraged to do so online.

For those who cannot renew online, or whose license or registration expires before May 15, DMV will grant a 60-day extension.

Protecting High-Risk Virginians
Those with chronic health conditions or aged 65 or older should self-quarantine. Public health experts advise that individuals with underlying medical conditions and those aged 65 or older are at increased risk of severe illness from COVID-19. Governor Northam encouraged neighbors and friends to stay in touch and regularly check in with high-risk individuals.

Increasing Social Distancing
All restaurants, fitness centers, and theaters are directed to significantly reduce their capacity to 10 patrons, or close. Restaurants are encouraged to continue carry-out and takeaway options.

Support for Affected Workers
Governor Northam announced the following actions to protect working Virginians impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak:

No waiting for unemployment benefits. Governor Northam has directed the Commissioner of the Virginia Employment Commission to waive the one-week waiting period to ensure workers can receive benefits as soon as possible.

Enhanced eligibility for unemployment. Workers may be eligible to receive unemployment benefits if an employer needs to temporarily slow or cease operations due to COVID-19. If a worker has been issued a notice to self-quarantine by a medical or public health official and is not receiving paid sick or medical leave from their employer, they may be eligible to receive unemployment benefits. In addition, a worker may be eligible for unemployment benefits if they must stay home to care for an ill family member and are not receiving paid family medical leave from their employer.

Fewer restrictions. For individuals receiving unemployment insurance, Governor Northam is directing the Virginia Employment Commission to give affected workers special consideration on deadlines, mandatory re-employment appointments, and work search requirements.

The Office of the Governor is providing a f requently asked questions guide f or workers that have been temporarily laid off or discharged during this public health crisis.

Support for Impacted Employers
Regional workforce teams will be activated to support employers that slow or cease operations. Employers who do slow or cease operations will not be financially penalized for an increase in workers requesting unemployment benefits.

The Governor is authorizing rapid response funding, through the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, for employers eligible to remain open during this emergency. Funds may be used to clean facilities and support emergency needs.

Governor Northam is directing all employers to follow U.S. Department of Labor guidance on workplace safety .

Governor Northam requested and the Supreme Court of Virginia granted a judicial emergency in response to COVID-19. From Monday, March 16 through Monday, April 6, non-essential, non-emergency court proceedings in all district and circuit courts are suspended absent a specific exemption. This includes a prohibition on new eviction cases for tenants who are unable to pay rent as a result of COVID-19. All non-exempted court deadlines are delayed and extended for a period of 21 days.

The State Corporation Commission (SCC) issued an order directing utilities it regulates, such as electric, natural gas, and water companies in Virginia, to suspend service disconnections for 60 days to provide immediate relief for any customer, residential and business, who may be financially impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak.

For a comprehensive list of actions Governor Northam has announced to combat COVID-19 in Virginia, visit virginia.gov/coronavirus .

Click here to access the original press release.

Video of today’s media briefing is available here .
METRO S ervice Reduced
Effective tomorrow (Wednesday, March 18)—and continuing until further notice—Metro service will operate as follows:


  • Rail system hours and service levels are further reduced to support ESSENTIAL TRAVEL ONLY. DO NOT TRAVEL UNLESS ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY and follow guidance from your state and local authorities.
  • New hours: Weekdays 5AM-11PM, Sat/Sun 8AM-11PM
  • Trains will run every 15 minutes on each line at all times, including the Red Line. All trains will operate with 8 cars, the maximum possible length, to help maintain social distancing between customers.
  • Metro’s Rail Operations Control Centers (two) will actively monitor trains and station platforms for any possible crowding, something that has not been an issue at any point during the pandemic emergency response.
  • Metro is reducing/cancelling track work, except emergency maintenance and inspections, to avoid unexpected delays and maintain 15-minute intervals between trains.

Bus hours and service levels are further reduced to support ESSENTIAL TRAVEL ONLY. DO NOT TRAVEL UNLESS ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY and follow guidance from your state and local authorities.

Buses will operate on a Sunday schedule, with supplemental service on selected routes to prevent crowding and ensure areas are not cut off. Visit wmata.com for information about “supplemental” routes that will operate, in addition to Sunday routes.

Bus operators are granted the authority to bypass bus stops to maintain safe social distancing aboard the vehicle.

These actions reduce the number of Metro employees and buses required to maintain service by more than 60 percent.

All subscription trips are cancelled until further notice. Customers with a critical need to travel should make a separate reservation calling 301-562-5360 (TTY 301-588-7535) or via the online reservation system.

Customers are strongly encouraged to travel ONLY IF ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY.

Click here to read the full notice.
Emergency Meal Distribution

Beginning Tuesday, March 17, FCPS is expanding the grab and go food distribution sites to a total of 29 locations. The food distribution is set up outside the schools. Breakfast will be served from 8-10:30 a.m. and lunch from 10:30 a.m. - 2 p.m. at the locations listed below:

FCPS has been flooded with generous offers from employees and community members to volunteer at our food distribution sites. Due to state training requirements for food distribution, we are encouraging those interested in helping to contact one of our community partners.   These partners are in continuous support of our FCPS families and are connected with the larger effort of Fairfax County, Their contact information is available here .
FCPS students are welcome to come to any of the sites to pick up a meal during these time periods.

All meals are available at no cost to children 18 years and under.  Adult lunches are available for purchase for $2.

For basic needs of Fairfax residents, the Fairfax County Department of Family Services administers public assistance programs such as SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) formerly Food Stamps, as well as Medicaid. 

Fairfax County Neighborhood and Community Services provides access and referrals to both government and community based resources for Fairfax County residents in need. If you are facing difficulties - including food, shelter, employment, financial assistance, healthcare and more other needs, please call 703-222-0880 for assistance.

Click here to learn about additional food resources in every part of Fairfax County.

Food for Others

Food for Others has three food distribution programs and sites all around the neighborhood. Bring a picture ID with a current address. Click here to view neighborhood sites.

Other places you can go for food *

Every Saturday
Columbia Baptist
3245 Glen Carlyn Road
Falls Church, VA 22041
(703) 820-6910
9:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

4th Saturday of the month
St. Stephens UMC
9203 Braddock Road
Burke, VA 22015
(703) 978-8724
7:30 a.m. – 9:00 a.m.

4th Saturday of the month
Abiding Presence Lutheran Church
6304 Lee Chapel Road
Burke, VA 22152
(703) 455-7500
9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.

*Please call the organization beforehand in case procedures have changed.

Other County Resources
For help with rent, utilities, housing services, clothing, jobs, health services, and other needs, please contact the following services:

Emergency Information and Referral Services
From anywhere in Northern Virginia, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, dial 2-1-1

Aunt Bertha – Connecting People and Programs:
On this website you will be connected with social service programs and organizations based on your zip code. Click here to visit.

County Services: Fairfax County Coordinated Services Planning
(703) 222-0880
Open Monday – Friday, 8:30 – 4:30 p.m.
  2020 Community Paving and Restriping Program Cancelled
The Fairfax County Department of Transportation (FCDOT) and the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) have canceled the remaining community meetings for the   2020 Paving and Restriping Program  scheduled for March 2020.  R esidents can view the meeting presentations online for each district and give feedback through April 14, 2020.

View District Presentations and Provide Feedback
If you would like to provide feedback on the paving and restriping program, here are three ways to provide your comments:
  1. Email us at  bikefairfax@fairfaxcounty.gov
  2. Call us at 703-877-5600, TTY 711
  3. Mail your comments to:
Active Transportation Program
Fairfax County Department of Transportation 
4050 Legato Road, Suite 400
Fairfax, VA 22033

Background on Paving and Restriping Program
The paving and restriping program improves hundreds of roads in Fairfax County each year through maintenance and repaving. At the same time, the state and county agencies coordinate restriping efforts to address safety issues for motorists, bicyclists and pedestrians through the creation of bike lanes, parking lanes, crosswalks and more.
For more information, visit the Fairfax County 2020 Paving and Restriping Program .
Message From George Mason University
Today the university’s leadership has made some decisions regarding the rest of the semester that will allow us to be successful in our mission during this continued period of uncertainty. These decisions were made based on guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and ongoing increasing cases in our region, along with input from the faculty, our deans and our Board of Visitors.

Please remember you can find all our central communications on the university’s coronavirus website

Online instruction extended
We are extending online instruction for the remainder of the semester. We feel this is the right decision to safeguard the health and safety of our campus community. We recognize that this is not ideal, and we look forward to getting back to our normal routines, including face-to-face-instruction and the robust faculty-student interaction it allows, as soon as we can. We will be in contact with our residential students soon about the implications of this change for them.

Academic calendar and registration
The additional week of spring break will require us to extend the spring semester for a week. The last day of class will be Monday, May 11 and final exams will be held May 13-20. Registration for summer classes will be delayed by one week and time tickets will be adjusted accordingly. This extension does not apply to the law school or classes that are on an eight-week calendar, or online special cohort classes, or other specialty courses whose schedules were not delayed by the extension of spring break.

We expect the summer term to begin on June 1, and summer session adjustments will be made. We expect normal operations to resume in time for fall. 

Commencement will be rescheduled
Based on the changes to the academic calendar this semester, we have decided to postpone commencement by at least one week. Therefore, commencement will not be held as scheduled on May 15. Degree celebrations that were scheduled for May 13-16 will also be rescheduled.

We are tentatively looking at rescheduling commencement for May 22, if future developments make large gatherings feasible then. We will provide additional details as soon as possible. 

Recruiting goes virtual, acceptance deadline extended
The Office of Admissions has cancelled all on-campus recruitment events until further notice. Admissions is encouraging students to visit the virtual tour , and the team is actively working on video content and virtual options to continue to connect with students and families. Additionally, in order to give students more time to make their decisions about next fall, the Admissions Office has extended the National Candidates Reply date for Freshmen from May 1 to June 1. The Mason Nation is an incredible place, and we look forward to sharing it with an amazing group of new Patriots this fall.

Telework implementation and security
Faculty are working to transition their classes to alternative virtual instruction. ITS has helpful instructions on its Working Remotely page. We appreciate your flexibility and creativity that allow us to continue instruction and provide necessary services to our campus community.

We continue to strongly encourage teleworking options for employees where feasible. Human Resources will soon provide additional information on teleworking to help guide supervisors and employees. Please work with your managers and refer to existing policies and procedures .

We are sensitive to maintaining the safety and security of those who are working on campus. The Card Access Security Office has shared details about opportunities to restrict access to your departments to cardholders.
Mental Health Support
If you’re struggling with mental health issues during this stressful time, please visit the resources below for help. 

  • Community Services Board Mental Health Non-Emergency
  • Community Services Board Mental Health Emergency Services 703-573-5679 or visit 8221 Willow Oaks Corporate Drive.
  • The Fairfax-Falls Church Community Services Board, in partnership with PRS CrisisLink, offers a suicide prevention text line in Fairfax. Anyone can text "CONNECT" to 855-11 and a PRS CrisisLink volunteer will respond within minutes. You can also call 703-527-4077, any time 24/7.
  • Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline:1-800-273-TALK (8255) or contact the Crisis hotline by texting 741741
  • Contact the Crisis Text Line by texting TALK to 741741.
  • Veteran's Crisis Line at 1-800-273-8255 and Press 1
Stay Informed
This is a rapidly changing situation, and information is being shared as it becomes available.

  • Learn more about COVID-19 on the county’s website.
  • Call (703) 267-3511 with questions. The call center is open from 9 a.m. until 9 p.m. weekdays and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekends.
Prevention Tips
Consejos de Prevención
Coronavirus Symptoms
Síntomas de Coronavirus