Delegate Watkins Abbitt, Jr., will not seek reelection


Longtime state Delegate Watkins Abbitt, Jr., whose 59th District includes a southeastern portion of Albemarle County, has decided that 13 terms is enough. Abbitt, a Democrat turned Independent representative, announced that he would not seek reelection in November. House speaker William Howell (R-Stafford) said Abbitt’s work “strengthened Virginia’s economy, enhanced agricultural production, improved educational achievement and benefited law enforcement and constitutional officers.”

During the last General Assembly session, Abbitt sponsored a bill to allow the state Department of Conservation and Recreation to eliminate Elizabeth Breeden’s 36-acre “doughnut hole” property in the middle of Biscuit Run via a land swap. Abbitt also introduced bills that scaled back penalties for violating state hunting laws and eliminated a requirement that the governor appoint two board members for Albemarle’s Miller School.