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Albemarle has a less competitive ballot than Charlottesville so far, with two candidates for the Board of Supervisors, compared to six candidates for the City Council. Both bodies will have three positions available in November’s election.
Albemarle native Jerrod Smith announced his campaign for the Rivanna District seat on the Board of Supervisors on Friday. The current Rivanna supervisor is Norman Dill, who is stepping down from the position at the end of his term.
“I like to think of myself as ‘as Rivanna as it gets’ — Stony Point Elementary School, Sutherland Middle School, Albemarle High School,” Smith said.
Smith has a master’s degree in public policy from the University of Virginia’s Batten School. Smith currently works at PRA Health Sciences and serves on the community advisory board for the county’s northernmost neighborhoods.
Smith is focused on what he calls “dream infrastructure.” He said that his priorities — faster internet in rural areas, a business-friendly environment, technology-focused education, and technical schools — will help anyone, from any background, achieve their career dreams.
“I’ve had the door slammed in my face economically. I’ve had opportunities to succeed economically. At the core, I believe that this place can be wonderful for everyone,” Smith said.
Dill, who owns Rebecca’s Natural Food and ran as a Democrat in 2015, said that he was happy with what he has accomplished during his four-year term and that it is time for him to focus on his business again.
“In the future, the supervisor role may need to be paid [more],” Dill said. “It shouldn’t have to be that only people that are independently wealthy [can run] — and I’m not wealthy at all. I lost a ton of income by not tending to my business.”
Two other supervisors are up for re-election this year. Ann H. Mallek, of the White Hall District, has decided to run for her fourth term. Rick Randolph, of the Scottsville District, has not announced whether he is running yet.
“I was asked yesterday why I want to run. The answer is because I really enjoy it, listening to citizens, meetings, homework, working with our exceptional staff, the whole package,” Mallek said during her announcement on Wednesday.
Mallek also described challenges ahead, including how to fund capital projects like school additions that were postponed during the Great Recession. She listed as some of her successes the city-county court agreement, recent economic development initiatives, and environmental protections like mandatory stream buffers.
Smith and Mallek are both running as Democrats.
The Democratic candidates for the Charlottesville City Council include activist Michael Payne, Region Ten Community Services Board member Sena Magill, attorney Lloyd Snook and UVa project manager Brian Pinkston.
John Edward Hall and Paul Long are running for the council as independents. Both have campaigned previously but have not won seats.
Activist Don Gathers announced his candidacy but has decided to delay the start of his campaign. Councilors Kathy Galvin, Mike Signer and Wes Bellamy have not announced yet whether they plan to run again.
Primary elections are on June 11, and the general election is Nov. 5. Candidates affiliated with the Democratic or Republican Party must submit their paperwork by March 28, but other candidates have until June 11.