Two incumbents and two challengers have announced they plan to run for the three Vienna Town Council seats to be contested May 10.
Incumbents George Lovelace and Mary Jane Cronin said Monday they will seek reelection, and longtime civic activists Mary Pruett and Robert Dix announced they will run for first terms.
Mayor Charles A. Robinson Jr. also announced he will run for a seventh consecutive term.
Council members are elected in nonpartisan races for two-year terms, with half of the six council seats coming up for election every spring. The three candidates with the most votes are elected. In even-numbered years, the mayor's post also comes up for election.
Two weeks ago, 12-year incumbent Vincent Olson announced he would not run again, prompting Pruett and Dix to begin petition drives to get their names on the ballot. The deadline for filing is March 8.
Except for a store-lined strip of Rte. 123 that cuts through the middle of town, Vienna is a town of predominantly brick single-family homes. For most of the last 12 years, municipal elections in Vienna have been low-key, with voter turnout usually at 20 percent or less.
A town ordinance prohibits any candidate from posting more than three campaign signs totaling 12 square feet in town, and most candidates favor anything that limits development and traffic in town. No divisive issues have emerged so far in this campaign, and maybe none will, the candidates agree.
"I don't expect any major disagreements on any of the issues . . . " said Lovelace, a retired army lieutenant colonel and now a telecommunications engineer for Boeing. "The reason people come to live here is because of the single-family atmosphere . . . everything that we do is going to be toward maintaining that."
Lovelace was first elected in 1982 and has been a top vote-getter ever since.
Cronin is executive assistant to the federal government's family support administrator, and was elected to the council in 1986. As a council member, she said she pushed for hiring a full-time town planning director and developing a formal capital improvement program.
Pruett, a retired instructional aide, is known in town as the leader of the Vienna Metro Area Citizens Coalition, a group that successfully fought to scale down the Virginia Center development project to be built near the Vienna Metro station. She is a 17-year veteran of the Planning Commission, including a two-year term as chairman, and has served as president of the Vienna Women's Club and organized the Southwest Vienna Citizens Association.
Dix, who is director of fleet and leasing sales at JKJ Chevrolet in Vienna, is chairman of the Vienna Centennial Committee, and organized and developed the annual ViVa! Vienna! Town festival. He served as chairman of the board of directors of the Greater Vienna Chamber of Commerce and has been involved in several other local organizations.
Robinson, a retired lawyer and deputy general manager of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association, was elected in 1976, and has not had an opponent since 1980.