Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 15.2. Counties, Cities and Towns
Chapter 16. Local Constitutional Officers, Courthouses and Supplies
5/18/2021

§ 15.2-1602. Sharing of such officers by two or more units of government.

Two or more units of government may share the officer or officers, or any combination of them, required by § 15.2-1600 if (i) a petition, signed by a number of qualified voters equal to fifteen percent of the number of votes cast in such units of government by voters thereof and counted for candidates in the last gubernatorial election in such units of government, and in no event signed by less than 100 voters of such units of government, is filed with a circuit court having jurisdiction in one or more of such units of government, asking that a referendum be held on the question "May the (names of the units of government) share the (officer or officers), as the case may be, (naming such officers if less than all) required by Article VII, Section 4 of the Constitution of Virginia ?"; (ii) following the filing of such petition, the court shall by order entered of record, issued in accordance with Article 5 (§ 24.2-681 et seq.) of Chapter 6 of Title 24.2, require the regular election officials of the units of government to open the polls and take the sense of the voters on such question and (iii) at the election held on the day designated by order of such court, a majority of the voters voting in such election in each such unit of government shall have voted "Yes." The clerk of the circuit court which entered the order shall publish notice of the election in a newspaper of general circulation in such units of government once a week for three consecutive weeks prior to the election.

The regular election officials of the units of government shall open the polls at the various voting places in such units of government on the date specified in the order and conduct the election in the manner provided by law. The election shall be by ballot which shall be prepared by the electoral boards of the units of government and on which shall be printed the following:

"May _______________ share the officer or officers, as the case may be, (naming such officers if less than all) required by Article VII, Section 4 of the Constitution of Virginia?

[ ] Yes

[ ] No"

In the blank shall be inserted the names of the units of government in which such election is held. The question required by this section may be modified to accommodate the naming of the officer or officers. Any voter desiring to vote "Yes" shall mark a check (✓) mark or a cross (✗ or +) mark or a line (-) in the square provided for such purpose immediately preceding the word "Yes," leaving the square immediately preceding the word "No," unchanged. Any voter desiring to vote "No" shall mark a check (✓) mark or cross (✗ or +) mark or a line (-) in the square provided for such purpose immediately preceding the word "No," leaving the square immediately preceding the word "Yes," unmarked.

The ballots shall be counted, returns made and canvassed as in other elections, and the results certified by the electoral boards to the court ordering such election. Thereupon, the court shall enter an order proclaiming the results of the election, and a duly certified copy of the order shall be transmitted to the State Board of Elections and to the governing bodies of the units of government affected.

Thereafter, the officer or officers shall be elected by the voters of the units of government desiring to share such officer or officers; however, the provisions of this section shall not reduce the term of any person holding an office at the time the election provided for in this section is held.

1971, Ex. Sess., c. 223, § 15.1-40.2; 1975, c. 517; 1976, c. 301; 1997, c. 587.

The chapters of the acts of assembly referenced in the historical citation at the end of this section may not constitute a comprehensive list of such chapters and may exclude chapters whose provisions have expired.