A. The powers of the county as a body politic and corporate shall be vested in a board of county supervisors (the board), to consist of not less than three nor more than nine members to be elected by the voters of the county at large, or solely by the voters of the respective magisterial or election district of which each member is a qualified voter. There shall be on the board for each magisterial or election district one member, and no more, who shall be a qualified voter of the district.The supervisors first elected shall hold office until January 1 following the next regular election provided by general law for the election of supervisors. At such election their successors shall be elected for terms of four years each.
B. When any vacancy occurs in the board, the vacancy shall be filled in accordance with § 24.2-228, except that the board shall have the option in its petition to the court to request that the election to fill the vacancy be held prior to the next or second ensuing general election, as the case may be. In that event, such election shall be held within sixty days of the issuance of the writ, or, if such election would fall within the sixty days prior to a general or primary election, on the general election day or within sixty days following the primary election.
C. Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection B, the provisions of this subsection shall apply to any county with the county executive form of government that is contiguous to a county with the urban county executive form of government. Notwithstanding the provisions of §§ 24.2-226 and 24.2-228, when any vacancy occurs in the membership of the board, the judge of the circuit court of the county shall issue a writ for a special election to fill the vacancy for the remainder of the unexpired term. The judge shall issue the writ within fifteen days of the occurrence of the vacancy. He shall order the election to be held not fewer than forty-five days and not more than sixty days after the issuance of the writ. However, if the election would fall within sixty days before a general election, the judge shall order the election to be held on the general election day; and, if the election would fall within sixty days before a primary election, the judge shall order the election to be held not fewer than thirty days and not more than sixty days after the primary. If the vacancy occurs prior to a general election and there is insufficient time to order the election to be held at the general election, the judge shall order the election to be held not fewer than 45 days and not more than 60 after the general election. The local electoral board shall determine and announce within three business days after the date of the writ the candidate filing deadline for the special election. The remaining members of the board shall not make a temporary appointment to fill the vacancy. However, if the vacancy occurs within the 180 days before the expiration of the term of office, there shall be no special election, and the remaining members of the board shall fill the vacancy by appointment pursuant to § 24.2-228 within thirty days of the occurrence of the vacancy and after holding a public hearing on the appointment. The appointment shall be for the duration of the unexpired term.
Code 1950, § 15-273; 1952, c. 346; 1962, c. 623, § 15.1-589; 1966, c. 463; 1971, Ex. Sess., c. 65; 1982, c. 139; 1983, c. 350; 1997, c. 587; 1999, c. 718; 2007, c. 268.