Janice Corbin, Culpeper County Circuit Court’s longtime clerk, has retired with three years remaining on her eight-year term. To fill her seat, the Board of Supervisors is requesting a March 30 special election.
Corbin was appointed clerk in July 2005 and won the seat in a special election four months later. She was re-elected in 2007 and 2015. Her current term expires at the end of 2023.
County Attorney Bobbi Jo Alexis explained the supervisors must petition the court for a special election within 15 days of a vacancy. Corbin's retirement became effective at the end of 2020. She explained the state requires the seat be filled “promptly.” Other requirements include that the special election take place on a Tuesday and is not held within 55 days of a general or primary election.
Alexis proposed putting the position up for vote in either March or November.
Supervisor Brad Rosenberger wondered if the March election date gives citizens much time to get to know the candidates.
Supervisor Bill Chase noted that the clerk is a very “high power” job and he wants to ensure a level playing field that allows citizens to choose who they want.
Supervisor Paul Bates wondered if the March date gives candidates enough time to gather the necessary signatures to get their names on the ballot.
Supervisor Tom Underwood said scheduling a special election 90 days out is not unheard of in Virginia, noting that Prince William County recently took a similar action. Underwood added that the March date would be the prompt route and provides adequate time to all parties involved.