A local resident is challenging Leesburg Town Council candidate Bill Replogle’s eligibility for November’s ballot.
Leesburg resident Brian McAfee has filed a petition to Loudoun Commonwealth’s Attorney Buta Biberaj challenging whether Replogle met the residency requirements to run for the council seat.
When Replogle first announced his campaign in May, he acknowledged that he lived in the River Creek community, outside the town’s corporate limits, but had purchased a house on North Street and was in the process of moving back into town. Replogle and his family had previously lived in the town’s Woodlea Manor neighborhood, beginning in the early 1990s.
McAfee alleges that Replogle knowingly falsified his address to qualify for November’s Town Council election. In Replogle’s certificate of candidate qualification, which McAfee said he obtained from the Office of Elections via a Freedom of Information Act request and then shared with Loudoun Now, Replogle lists his address on May 19 of this year as 307 Edwards Ferry Road in Leesburg. That is the home of Bruce and Rachel Roberts, more well known locally as “The Flower Lady.”
When reached Thursday, Replogle said there was a several-week lapse between the closing on his North Street home in early May and his move into town. He said Bruce Roberts, a friend of his, offered Replogle the opportunity to stay at his residence during that time period, an account confirmed by Roberts. Replogle said he and his family have been living in their North Street home since July 1.
“Did I stay there every night? No, COVID was raging and I wasn’t concerned as much about being in that position as my personal health and the health of the Roberts,” Replogle said, referring to the Roberts’ home. “I wasn’t a nightly guest there but I was over there a number of times. Everything was kind of messed up by COVID.”
In his email to Biberaj, McAfee also alleges that Replogle updated his voter registration to match the Edwards Ferry Road address.
“Regardless of property he may own within Town limits, he did not reside, nor has he ever resided, at the address provided. Mr. Replogle should be ineligible for candidacy as he did not reside within Town limits at the time he submitted his Certificate. Additionally, Mr. Replogle is guilty of election fraud, by submitting a residential address that he does not/did not reside in, in order to falsify his qualification(s) for the office in question,” McAfee wrote in his email.
McAfee said Friday he still has not received any correspondence back from the Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office, after first registering his complaint with them on Sept. 17. Calls from this newspaper to Biberaj and an email to the Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office were also not returned.
Replogle is one of four running for a Leesburg Town Council seat, along with Ara Bagdasarian, Zach Cummings, and Kari Nacy. Three seats are up for grabs in November, with none of the incumbents for those seats running for re-election.