The Loudoun County Board of Supervisors will review a study from the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) during its April 5, 2022, meeting. The presentation is intended to inform the Board of Supervisors and the public about the findings of the 228-page study, which was conducted over the past year. The study may inform future action by the Board regarding the establishment of a police department in Loudoun County.
The IACP study will be presented to the Board during its regular business meeting on April 5, which begins at 5:00 p.m. Member of the public may watch the presentation on cable TV (Comcast Channel 23 or Verizon FiOS Channel 40), via live stream at loudoun.gov/meetings, or in person at the Government Center (1 Harrison St. SE, Leesburg).
The Board of Supervisors has been evaluating the possibility of establishing a police department in Loudoun County. In April 2021, the Board was presented with information regarding potential changes in the “traditional form” of county government (PDF). The Board took no action on changing the form of government, but continued to explore establishing a county police department. If a police department is established, the county’s law enforcement services would be provided by the police department while the sheriff’s office would continue to provide state-mandated corrections and court services.
Currently, the Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office (LCSO) serves as the county’s primary law enforcement agency. Unlike other northern Virginia counties (including Fairfax, Arlington and Prince William), Loudoun County does not have a police department. LCSO fulfills all of the duties that both the police departments and sheriff’s offices perform in neighboring counties. The sheriff is one of five Constitutional Officers who are elected by the residents of Loudoun County.
If the Board of Supervisors chooses to move forward with formation of a police department, the Board would have to vote to place a referendum on a future ballot for the voters of Loudoun County to ultimately decide whether to establish a police department. Virginia law (§15.2-1702) requires the Board to petition the court, asking that a referendum be held on establishing a county police force. Voters must first approve the formation, and then appropriate authorizing legislation must be enacted by the General Assembly.
Following the presentation of the study on April 5, the Board will determine its next steps.
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