Commissioner of Revenue Sharon Dodson stepping down before term expires

Commissioner of the revenue candidates (from left) Sharon Dodson, Christa Weeks and Marlina Lee smile at a question at the Rappahannock News’ candidates forum in 2015. Luke Christopher

Rappahannock County Commissioner of Revenue Sharon Dodson has informed the Rappahannock News that she will be stepping down from her elective post effective Monday, March 4.

“I will be retiring March 4 because of family circumstances,” the commissioner said Tuesday morning.

As of Feb. 1, Dodson will have been with the county for 39 years. She was deputy revenue commissioner for 17 years under Beverly Atkins, who retired in 2016 after 30 years in the commissioner’s post.

As the chief assessing officer for Rappahannock, she is responsible for determining the value of property for tax purposes, identifying property and its owners, listing property values on the assessment roll, and applying legal exemptions.

Dodson’s seat is up for reelection on Nov. 5. In 2015, she defeated Marlina Lee of Castleton and Christa Weeks of Washington to replace Atkins. She won an impressive 68 percent of the vote in that election).

According to Paragraph B of Virginia Code 24.2-228.1, “Election to fill vacancy in constitutional office,” if a vacancy in any elected office occurs within 12 months immediately preceding the end of the term in that office — as in the case of Dodson — the governing body may petition the circuit court to request that no special election be ordered.

“The highest ranking deputy officer,” the code continues, “shall be vested with the powers and shall perform all of the duties of the office, and shall be entitled to all the privileges and protections afforded by law to elected or appointed constitutional officers, for the remainder of the unexpired term.”

Interestingly enough, Cathy Lane and Mary Graham both have the title of “deputy commissioner of the revenue” for Rappahannock County.

Reached this week, Rappahannock County Administrator Garrey Currey said while he is very familiar with state code 24.2-228.1 there’s “a little confusion” on how it can be applied in this case, which his office is currently working through.

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John McCaslin is the editor of the Rappahannock News. Email him at