As summer officially begins this month and our region moves into Phase 1 of reopening, I wish you a relaxing and enjoyable season in spite of the many challenges we face. We must continue to take steps to protect ourselves and others from COVID-19, such as practicing social distancing and covering our faces in public. We may also enjoy time with family, outdoors, and by the water. Find the Prince William County parks and trails that are open near you.
Last week I announced the launch of a new initiative to provide COVID-19 testing and personal protective equipment (PPE) to home care workers and providers at long-term care facilities. As a workplace safety measure, adequate testing and PPE will help our long-term and home care workers safely care for our most vulnerable. Stay tuned (and follow on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram) for ways you can learn more and get involved!
As of Thursday, there were 5,932 coronavirus cases, 512 hospitalizations, and 110 deaths in Prince William County. Please visit the Prince William County coronavirus website and Virginia’s coronavirus website for more information on staying healthy and resources like unemployment insurance, food assistance, or small business loans. Additionally, Prince William County Schools students have organized a mutual aid network to directly connect folks in need with those able to help. If you are in a position to offer any resources or services to your neighbors, you can visit the mutual aid donation form. To request resources or services for yourself or someone else, visit the mutual aid request form. Prince William County Mutual Aid will connect donors with the appropriate recipients.
Prince William County, along with the rest of the Northern Virginia region, entered Phase 1 of the Governor’s reopening plan last Friday. As more businesses open with reduced capacity, everyone over the age of 10 is required to wear a cloth face covering while inside public spaces.
As some are returning to work outside the home, keep in mind that much of our public transportation continues to operate on a limited schedule with enhanced sanitization practices. See my full summary of schedule changes and safety measures here.
OmniRide Express is not accepting cash and is operating only the following commuter service: D-100 Dale City – Washington (Friday schedule), D-300 Dale City–Navy Yard (Friday schedule), MC-200 Montclair–Pentagon (Friday schedule), and 612 Gainesville–Pentagon/L’Enfant Plaza/Navy Yard (regular schedule). OmniRide Metro Express and Local routes are running on a regular schedule with free fares. East-West Express and paratransit service are also operating a regular schedule. These buses are being sanitized frequently, have limited the number of passengers, and bus operators and riders should all have face coverings.
VRE is operating at a reduced “S” schedule level. See the modified schedules for Metrorail, Metrobus, and MetroAccess here. Face coverings are required to ride VRE and Metro.
I hope you and your family are staying safe and continuing to practice social distancing as much as possible. Keep in mind that the deadline to request an absentee ballot to be mailed to you for June’s congressional primary election is 5 PM on Tuesday, June 16. The deadline to return your absentee ballot is 7 PM on Election Day, June 23. Everyone may use reason 2A “My disability or illness” as a qualifying reason to vote absentee and you will not need a witness’s signature for this election. Finally, remember to complete your 2020 census to help direct federal funding for things like roads and schools to your community. Please reach out to my office with any questions.