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Precinct changes are coming ahead of primary, general elections

Polling place sign outside Madison Community Center (file photo)

Arlington voters may notice a some changes on their voter cards this year.

The precinct name and the number that you’re used to seeing will be standardized.

Currently, precincts are named after various things — neighborhoods, streets, buildings, etc. In Waycroft-Woodlawn, it is named after the neighborhood  — 024 Woodlawn. The polling place is at the Glebe School on Glebe Road. However, there’s another precinct named 030 Glebe a couple of miles away, with a polling place at Drew Elementary on 23rd Street S. in Green Valley.

The 54 voting precincts are currently numbered with a one or two-digit number — albeit starting with one or two zeros — which will change to a three-digit number beginning at 101. So Precinct 1, will now be 101 and Precinct 54 would be Precinct 154, etc.

“The State requires a 3-digit number,” notes a report to the County Board, adding: “Precincts have been named after neighborhoods, facilities, and streets where they are located. All have proved problematic.”

The solution proposed by county staff is to switch that first leading zero to a one, while also eliminating the confusing names.

The new name for Woodlawn will be simply “Precinct 124,” while the Glebe precinct will become “Precinct 130.”

“The Arlington County Electoral Board and General Registrar hope the renaming and renumbering of precincts will help create a more seamless voting experience for Arlington County residents,” said Tania Griffin, community and outreach coordinator for the county’s Office of Voter Registration & Elections.

The request has to go to the state attorney general for approval, which can take up to 60 days, but changes will be made in time for the June 21 primary election.

The County Board voted to request these changes at its meeting on Saturday.

There were also some run-of-the-mill location changes for polling centers, approved by the Board ahead of the upcoming election. Voters in the Lexington 31, Overlee Knolls 17 and Buckingham 45 precincts may want to note the new locations below.

  • Precinct 117 (currently “Overlee Knolls”) will move from Resurrection Lutheran Church to Cardinal School, 1644 N. McKinley Road.
  • Precinct 131 (currently “Lexington”) will move from Lee Community Center, which closed indefinitely, to Westover Library at 1644 N. McKinley Road.
  • Precinct 145 (currently “Buckingham”) will move from Barrett Elementary to the Lubber Run Community Center at 300 N. Park Drive.

Redistricting, meanwhile, could bring other precinct changes to the general election in November. The Arlington View precinct along Columbia Pike was split between the 2nd and 3rd House of Delegates districts and each must be in a single district.

The elections office has proposed three options to remedy the problem: Redraw the boundaries of precincts 10, 15, and 38; request a waiver to have a split precinct; or create an entirely new precinct.

The changes will not affect the June primary.

“We continue to get feedback from the community and options will be presented to the County Board before the November election,” Griffin said.

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