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Uncertainty continues over May's local elections in Virginia

Posted at 11:18 AM, Apr 23, 2020

NORFOLK, Va. - Local elections scheduled for May 5 remain up in the air.

During their veto session on Wednesday, the State Senate didn't take up Gov. Northam's proposal to move the elections to November, effectively killing the proposal.

The House of Delegates voted to approve the idea, but because of the Senate's inaction, the future is unclear. As of now, the elections remain scheduled for May.

Several Hampton Roads communities have elections for races like mayor and city council scheduled for that day, including Norfolk, Hampton, Newport News, and Chesapeake.

Northam had proposed moving it due to concerns over people voting during his stay-at-home order and the continuing health concerns of the coronavirus pandemic.

Some lawmakers have expressed opposition to Northam's idea as many people have already voted absentee and local office terms generally end on June 30, well before November.

Northern Virginia Democratic Senator Chap Petersen is calling for the local elections to be moved to June. His proposal would require Gov. Northam to call a special session of the General Assembly.

Gov. Northam can move the elections by two weeks to May 19 under his existing powers. As of now, the next steps remain unclear.