Agriculture, Conservation and Natural Resources Committee

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Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”

  • SB 1135 Dangerous dogs; restructures procedure for adjudication, penalty. 
  • SB 1164 Advanced recycling; not considered solid waste management, definition. 
  • SB 1188 Virginia Agriculture Food Assistance Program and Fund; established and created. 
  • SB 1193 Dairy Producer Margin Coverage Premium Assistance Program; established. 
  • SB 1194 Produce safety; removes the sunset date. 
  • SB 1196 Teachers and other licensed school board employees; cultural competency. 
  • SB 1199 Conservation easements; construction. 
  • SB 1210 Permit fee schedules; DEQ to revise current schedule for nonhazardous solid waste mgmt. facilities. 
  • SB 1220 State facilities; admission of certain aliens. 
  • SB 1258 Solar projects; erosion and sediment control. 
  • SB 1265 Natural gas pipelines; stop work orders. 
  • SB 1274 Wildlife corridors; various agencies to consider and incorporate. 
  • SB 1280 Dams; negotiated settlement agreements. 
  • SB 1282 Greenhouse gas emissions inventory; regulations. 
  • SB 1290 ConserveVirginia program; established. 
  • SB 1291 Va. Water Protection Permit; withdrawal of surface water or ground water, plans for water auditing. 
  • SB 1311 Water quality standards; modification of permits and certifications. 
  • SB 1319 Waste Diversion & Recycling Task Force; Department of Environmental Quality to continue Task Force. SB 1354 Chesapeake Bay; wastewater treatment, Enhanced Nutrient Removal Certainty Program established. 
  • SB 1374 Carbon Sequestration Task Force; established. 
  • SB 1379 Humane Cosmetics Act; civil penalties. 
  • SB 1396 Onsite Sewage Indemnification Fund; use of Fund for grants to certain property owners. .
  • SB 1402 Trout fishing in stocked waters; equalizes for residents and nonresidents requirements to fish. 
  • SB 1404 Stormwater Local Assistance Fund; grants awarded for projects related to Chesapeake Bay. 
  • SB 1411 Peanuts; extends sunset date of excise tax on all peanuts grown in Virginia. 
  • SB 1412 Pet shops, dealers, and dog breeders; employees convicted of animal abuse, penalty. 
  • SB 1417 Animal testing facilities; definitions, adoption of dogs and cats, civil penalty. 
  • SB 1453 Mines and Mining and Virginia Energy Plan; revision of Titles 45.1 and 67. 
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Agriculture, Conservation and Natural Resources 2021 hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee: 1/19  1/26  2/4  2/16 

Subcommittees:

Companion Animals: 1/25

Menhaden: 1/28 

On Virginia’s rural coast, resiliency and Chesapeake Bay conservation goals collide amid sea level rise
Virginia Mercury, The geography of Mathews County was carved by catastrophe. Thirty-five million years ago, a meteorite or comet tore through the Earth’s atmosphere and slammed into its surface somewhere between the county and what is now called Cape Charles. In the ruin it left behind, the Chesapeake Bay would form. Mathews, at the very tip of Virginia’s Middle Peninsula, remains one of the state’s lowest-lying areas, surrounded on three sides by the Chesapeake Bay and the waters that flow into it. “We’re flat as a pancake,” said Thomas Jenkins, the county’s planning, zoning and wetlands director. “Much of the county is close to sea level.” Today a far slower but perhaps no less catastrophic force is reshaping Mathews. As climate change drives seas upward, the county is struggling to keep its waterfront properties above the tides. March 31, 2021 (Medium)

The geography of Mathews County was carved by catastrophe.

Thirty-five million years ago, a meteorite or comet tore through the Earth’s atmosphere and slammed into its surface somewhere between the county and what is now called Cape Charles. In the ruin it left behind, the Chesapeake Bay would form. Mathews, at the very tip of Virginia’s Middle Peninsula, remains one of the state’s lowest-lying areas, surrounded on three sides by the Chesapeake Bay and the waters that flow into it.

“We’re flat as a pancake,” said Thomas Jenkins, the county’s planning, zoning and wetlands director. “Much of the county is close to sea level.”

Today a far slower but perhaps no less catastrophic force is reshaping Mathews. As climate change drives seas upward, the county is struggling to keep its waterfront properties above the tides.

Meets at: Tuesday, 1/2 hour after adjournment, Senate Room A, Pocahontas Building

Members: Chap Petersen (Chair) – Barbara Favola – Emmett Hanger – Ghazala Hashmi – Lynwood Lewis – Dave Marsden – Monty Mason – Jennifer McClellan –  Joe Morrissey  – Mark Obenshain – Todd Pillion – Frank Ruff –Bill Stanley – Richard Stuart – Dave Suetterlein 

(8 Democrats and 7 Republicans)

Subcommittees:

  • Companion Animals
  • Hemp
  • Menhaden

Commerce and Labor Committee (Senate)

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Commerce & Labor bills passed by the General Assembly
Virginia Legislative Information System

Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”)

  • SB 1182: Motor vehicle liability insurance; increases coverage amount.
  • SB 1219: Paid family and medical leave; SCC’s Bureau of Insurance to review and make recommendations, report.
  • SB 1223: Virginia Energy Plan; amends Plan to include an analysis of electric vehicle charging infrastructure
  • SB 1225: Broadband services; school boards to appropriate funds for expansion of services for education.
  • SB 1247: Electric generating facility closures; integrated resource plan.
  • SB 1255: SCC; issuance or renewal of insurance licenses or registrations during an emergency.
  • SB 1269: Health insurance; authorization of drug prescribed for the treatment of a mental disorder.
  • SB 1275: Workers’ compensation; presumption of compensability for certain diseases
  • SB 1284: Commonwealth Clean Energy Policy; established.
  • SB 1289: Health insurance; carrier business practices, provider contracts
  • SB 1295: Electric utilities; procurement of certain equipment.
  • SB 1310: Va. Human Rights Act; application of laws applicable to employee safety and payment of wages.
  • SB 1334: Broadband capacity; expands existing pilot program, municipal broadband authorities.
  • SB 1351: Workers’ compensation; claims not barred.
  • SB 1375: Workers’ compensation; presumption of compensability for COVID-19
  • SB 1413: Phase I or Phase II electric utilities; provision of broadband capacity
  • SB 1420: Electric utilities; nonjurisdictional customers, third party power purchase agreements.
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Commerce & Labor 2021 Hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee: 1/18  1/25  2/1  2/15  2/22

Subcommittees:
Energy: 1/27 2/12

Senators also rejected a compromise measure from Senate Majority Leader Dick Saslaw (D-Springfield) last year that would have allowed unions to collect some fees from nonmembers. Just three members of the Senate’s powerful Commerce and Labor committee voted for that proposal.

“If sharing the expenses of writing a union contract can only get three votes, a full repeal of Virginia’s prohibition on union shops does not appear to have the votes to pass the Senate right now,” says Sen. Scott Surovell (D-Fairfax), who supported Saslaw’s compromise.

Carter’s latest repeal attempt may have already encountered an early roadblock. As of Jan. 19, House Speaker Eileen Filler-Corn had not assigned the bill to a committee, prompting speculation from supporters that the Democrat intends to let it die.

Broadband expansion bills advance in Virginia House committee
Tyler Arnold February 11, 2021 (Short)

Senate Bill 1334, sponsored by Sen. John Edwards, D-Roanoke, would extend a current pilot program that allows municipalities and government-owned broadband authorities to participate in expanding broadband to unserved areas of the state. The bill does not have any fiscal impact, according to the fiscal impact statement.

The legislation has already passed the Senate and would be sent to Gov. Ralph Northam for his signature if it passes the House without any amendments. It advanced through the Labor and Commerce Committee with a 22-0 vote.

Another Senate-passed broadband bill advanced in the committee with amendments. Senate Bill 1413 would make permanent a pilot program that allows utility companies to petition the State Corporation Commission to provide broadband capacity to unserved areas of the state. The bill allows companies to recover the costs and revenue generated from providing broadband services. It would also consolidate the SCC’s petition approval process to one hearing.

The bill is now before the Senate Committee on Commerce and Labor. He acknowledges that rounding up enough votes from Republican senators will be tougher.

Brianna Esteves, manager of state policy with Ceres, agrees with Bourne’s assessment. She was pleased when the stronger bill emerged from the House Labor and Commerce Committee last week on a 16-6 bipartisan vote.

“Last year’s version passed in the House, but there was pushback in the Senate,” she said. “This bill shouldn’t be controversial. But we might see the same thing happen again this year. I’m not sure there’s enough interest among legislators to stand up to Dominion Energy.”

The bill is now before the Senate Committee on Commerce and Labor. He acknowledges that rounding up enough votes from Republican senators will be tougher.

Brianna Esteves, manager of state policy with Ceres, agrees with Bourne’s assessment. She was pleased when the stronger bill emerged from the House Labor and Commerce Committee last week on a 16-6 bipartisan vote.

“Last year’s version passed in the House, but there was pushback in the Senate,” she said. “This bill shouldn’t be controversial. But we might see the same thing happen again this year. I’m not sure there’s enough interest among legislators to stand up to Dominion Energy.”

Meets on: Monday at 15 Minutes After Adjournment in Senate Room A, Pocahontas Building

Members: Dick Saslaw (Chair) – George Barker – John Bell – Creigh Deeds – Adam Ebbin – John Edwards – Lynwood Lewis – Louise Lucas – Dave Marsden – Monty Mason – Steve Newman – Tommy Norment – Mark Obenshain – Lionell Spruill – Scott Surovell

(12 Democrats and 3 Republicans)

Subcommittees:

  • Energy
  • Health
  • Insurance

 

Education and Health Committee

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Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”)

  • SB 1121 Birth certificates; amending certificate, review of request. Birth certificates; amendments.
  • SB 1132 Public schools; severe weather conditions and other emergency situations.
  • SB 1147 Nurse Loan Repayment Program; certified nurse aide.
  • SB 1154 Behavioral Health and Developmental Services, Commissioner of; reports to designated protection.
  • SB 1169 Student driver safety; driver education program shall include dangers of speeding.
  • SB 1175 Removes the Brunswick County school board from the list of approved member salaries for appointed school boards.
  • SB 1178 Genetic counseling; repeals conscience clause. Genetic counseling; conscience clause.
  • SB 1187 Physical therapy; extends time allowed for a therapist to evaluate and treat patients. Department of Health Professions; practice of physical therapy.
  • SB 1189 Authorizes Virginia to become a signatory to the Occupational Therapy Interjurisdictional Licensure Compact.
  • SB 1190 Health Standards of Learning; advanced directive education for high school students.
  • SB 1205 Career fatigue and wellness in certain health care providers; programs to address, civil immunity.
  • SB 1220 State facilities; admission of certain aliens.
  • SB 1221 Loudoun County; operation of local health department.
  • SB 1227 Hormonal contraceptives; payment of medical assistance for 12-month supply.
  • SB 1257 SOQ; school board to provide at least three specialized student support positions.
  • SB 1276 Essential health benefits; abortion coverage.
  • SB 1288 Special education; Department of and the Board of Education to develop new policies and procedures.
  • SB 1302 Crisis Call Center Fund; created, collection of 988 charges.
  • SB 1303 Local school divisions; availability of virtual and in-person learning to all students.
  • SB 1304 Community services boards; discharge planning.
  • SB 1307 School-based health services; Bd. of MAS to amend state plan for services to provide for payment.
  • SB 1313 Children’s Services Act; funds expended special education programs.
  • SB 1320 Licensed certified midwives; clarifies definition, licensure, etc.
  • SB 1322 Public schools; seizure management and action plans, biennial training, effective date.
  • SB 1333 Pharmaceutical processors; permits processors to produce & distribute cannabis products.
  • SB 1338 Telemedicine services; remote patient monitoring services.
  • SB 1356 Hospitals, nursing homes, etc.; visits by clergy.
  • SB 1357 Standards of Learning; reading & mathematics assessments for students in grades three through eight
  • SB 1387 Students; eligibility for in-state tuition.
  • SB 1405 Get Skilled, Get a Job, Give Back (G3) Fund and Program; established.
  • SB 1408 Health Care, Joint Commission on; repeals sunset provision.
  • SB 1421 Brain injury; clarifies definition.
  • SB 1436 Eligible Health Care Provider Reserve Directory; established.
  • SB 1439 Students; guidelines on excused student absences, civic engagement.
  • SB 1464 Drug Control Act; adds certain chemicals to Schedule I of Act.
  • SB 1465 Illegal gambling; skill games, definitions, enforcement by localities and Attorney General.
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Education and Health 2021 Committee Hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee: 1/14 1/21 1/28 2/11 2/18 

Subcommittee on Health: 1/19 2/16 

Subcommittee on Health Professionals: 1/15 2/2 2/12 

Subcommittee on Higher Education: 1/18 1/28 2/3 2/15 

Subcommittee on Public Education: 1/15 2/2 2/12 

Makya Little was helping her fourth-grade daughter review for the Virginia Studies SOL, a standardized test on state history, when she found herself taken aback by one of the questions on the study guide.

“She gets to this one question that says ‘What’s the status of the early African?’” said Little, who lives in Prince William County. The correct answer, according to the class materials, was “unknown. They were either servants or enslaved.”

“I got really, really upset,” Little said. While historians widely agree that the first Africans to arrive at the Jamestown settlement were enslaved, there’s been contentious discussion on the topic — some of the state’s own study materials also state that it’s “unknown” whether they arrived as slaves or indentured servants. The school division didn’t provide any of that context, and Little said multiple thoughts flashed through her head. The information was “misleading,” she added, and seemed designed to “soften how early Americans treated Black and Indigenous people” (another prompt on the study guide stated that native people and English settlers had a “trade relationship”).

In late September, when Virginia health officials launched a dashboard that detailed outbreaks in K-12 schools across the state, it was applauded as a long-needed step toward more transparency — and a relief for parents hesitant over the prospect of sending their children back to the classroom.

Six months later, the data on reopening has gained even more importance amid a state and nationwide push to return students to the classroom. But there are limits on what it can and can’t tell officials, parents and others looking for answers on the relative risks of in-person school.

In early February, Gov. Ralph Northam directed local divisions to begin offering in-person instruction by March 15. Three weeks later, the Virginia General Assembly passed legislation — with bipartisan support — that mandates a return to the classroom by July 1.

As a result, only three of the state’s 132 local school divisions were operating fully remotely as of March 22, according to data from the Virginia Department of Education. Thirty-eight are fully in-person — defined by the agency as providing at least four days of in-person instruction for all students.

Northam signs bill funding Va. community-college education costs
WTOP, Rick Massimo March 29, 2021 (Short)

Low-income students in Virginia will soon be getting financial help with all the costs of getting an education.

Gov. Ralph Northam on Monday signed into law the “Get Skilled, Get a Job, Give Back” program, which will provide full tuition for community college for low-income students in certain majors, as well as incidental expenses such as food and transportation.

The bill, which passed the legislature overwhelmingly last month, budgets $36 million a year over the next two years.

The bill covers education that leads to in-demand jobs in fields such as technology, skilled labor and health care. Officials gathered at Northern Virginia Community College for the signing Monday said the bill would open doors to people who were considering higher education.

“I am so incredibly proud of this initiative,” said House Speaker Eileen Filler-Corn. “This has been something that we’ve been working on for a number of years.” She said there was a lot of bipartisan support for the bill even before COVID-19, but with a lot of lower-skill jobs disappearing because of the pandemic, “It’s more important now than ever.”

A few months into the COVID-19 pandemic, Nichole Wardlaw opened her own midwifery practice in Chesapeake.

A certified nurse-midwife, or CNM, Wardlaw was taking advantage of an emergency order signed by Gov. Ralph Northam, which allowed certified-nurse midwives and nurse practitioners to treat patients without an agreement with a licensed physician — something that’s typically required in Virginia.

But she was also trying to fill a need in her community. Wardlaw said she’s now the only Black certified nurse midwife in the Hampton Roads region to open an independent practice, spurred by concerns she heard from expecting mothers throughout the early months of the pandemic.

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Two Virginia bills that would have allowed a parent or guardian to refuse a COVID-19 vaccine for their child citing religious practices will not advance.

The Senate Education and Health Committee killed the two bills Thursday morning.

When Virginia senators passed a bill requiring local school divisions to provide in-person instruction by the summer, some anticipated the legislation would face an uphill battle in the House.

Nearly a month later, though, the same legislation is now on the verge of passing both chambers after several rounds of revisions — and mounting pressure to return children to school buildings.

Just a few days after the Senate vote, Gov. Ralph Northam directed Virginia’s 132 local divisions to begin offering in-person classes by March 15, saying that months of remote learning was “taking a toll on our children and our families.” Northam’s announcement followed a pledge from President Joe Biden to reopen schools within his first 100 days of office, and new guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on safely reopening schools and mitigating the spread of COVID-19 in buildings.

Meets on: Meets on Thursday at 8:00 a.m. in Senate Room A, Pocahontas Building

Members:  Louise Lucas (Chair) – George Barker – John Cosgrove – Siobhan Dunnavant – John Edwards – Ghazala Hashmi – Janet Howell – Lynwood Lewis – Mamie Locke – Steve Newman – Mark Peake – Chap Petersen – Dick Saslaw – Dave Suetterlein

(9 Democrats and 6 Republicans)

Subcommittees:

  • Certificate of Public Need
  • Health
  • Health Professions
  • Higher Education
  • Public Education

 

Finance and Appropriations Committee

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Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”)

  • SB 1112 Research and development expenses; tax credit available against the bank franchise tax.
  • SB 1130 Personal property tax; exemption for motor vehicle of a 100 percent disabled veteran.
  • SB 1134 Refunding bonds; alters the principal and interest requirements.
  • SB 1145 Commonwealth of Virginia Higher Educational Institutions Bond Act of 2021; created.
  • SB 1146 Income tax, state; conformity with the Internal Revenue Code.
  • SB 1254 Sports betting; clarifies certain procedures.
  • SB 1155 Capital outlay plan; repeals existing six-year capital outlay for projects to be funded.
  • SB 1156 Technology Development Grant Fund; created.
  • SB 1158 Port of Virginia tax credits; extends the sunset date.
  • SB 1162 Tax credit; agricultural best management practices.
  • SB 1163 Agricultural equipment; establishes a refundable individual and corporate income tax credit.
  • SB 1197 Virginia housing opportunity; tax credit established.
  • SB 1201 Energy storage systems; definitions, tax exemption, revenue share for systems.
  • SB 1204 George Mason University; management agreement with the Commonwealth.
  • SB 1251 Virginia Retirement System; technical amendments.
  • SB 1252 Coal tax credits; sunset dates.
  • SB 1326 Local cigarette taxes; regional cigarette tax boards.
  • SB 1398 Retail sales and transient occupancy taxes; room rentals.
  • SB 1403 Retail Sales and Use Tax; exemption for personal protective equipment.
  • SB 1423 Data centers; sales and use tax exemption, identifying a “distressed locality.”
  • SB 1438 Combined transient occupancy and food and beverage tax; technical amendments.

Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”.

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Finance and Appropriations 2021 Committee Hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee: 1/19 1/20 1/21 1/26 1/27 2/2 2/3 2/16 2/17 2/22 

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A proposal to make it illegal for Virginia politicians to use campaign funds to enrich themselves failed in the state Senate Tuesday, the latest sign of the legislature’s continuing wariness on campaign finance reform.

Several senators said they agreed with the proposal generally, but insisted policymakers should take more time to study it before imposing new rules on candidates running in Virginia’s wide-open fundraising system.

“The critical component here is to actually get it right,” said Sen. Jill Vogel, R-Fauquier, an election lawyer who noted that she sponsored a similar bill in the past and wants it to be wrapped into an upcoming study on comprehensive campaign finance reform.

MCLEAN, VA. (AP) — A Virginia Senate budget amendment would block the D.C. region’s Metro system from receiving at least $166 million in state funding unless it adds the name of Capital One bank to a northern Virginia Metrorail station.
Capital One wants the McLean station near its corporate headquarters to be renamed McLean-Capital One Hall to recognize a 1,600-seat theater it’s building on the campus.

Meets on: Tuesday and Wednesday at 9:00 a.m. in Committee Room B, Ground Floor, Pocahontas Building

Members: Janet Howell (Chair) – George Barker – Creigh Deeds – Adam Ebbin – John Edwards – Emmett Hanger – Mamie Locke – Louise Lucas – Dave Marsden – Jennifer McClellan – Steve Newman – Tommy Norment – Chap Petersen – Frank Ruff – Dick Saslaw – Jill Vogel

(11 Democrats and 5 Republicans)

Subcommittees:

  • Capital Outlay
  • Claims
  • Economic Development and Natural Resources
  • General Government
  • Health and Human Resources
  • Higher Education
  • K-12 Education
  • Public Safety
  • Resources
  • Transportation

 

General Laws and Technology Committee

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Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”

  • SB1110–  Property; duties of real estate settlement agents.
  • SB 1127 Charitable gaming; conduct of instant bingo, network bingo, pull tabs, and seal cards.
  • SB1150– Department of Veterans Services; Military Spouse Liaison; position created. 
  • SB 1183Property Owners’ Association Act/Condominium Act; use of electronic means for meetings and voting. 
  • SB 1215Virginia Residential Landlord and Tenant Act; tenant remedies for exclusion from dwelling unit, interruption of services, or actions taken to make premises unsafe.
  • SB 1271Virginia Freedom of Information Act; meetings held through electronic communication means during a state of emergency.
  • SB 1279- Department of Veterans Services; initiatives to reduce unemployment among veterans; comprehensive transition program. 
  • SB 1287Charitable Gaming Board; regulations; electronic pull tabs.
  • SB 1296State Coordinator of Emergency Management; establishment of Emergency Management Equity Working Group. 
  • SB 1314Virginia Economic Development Partnership Authority; Office of Education and Labor Market Alignment established; workforce and higher education alignment.
  • SB 1327Housing Bill of Rights; housing protections; foreclosures; manufactured housing. 
  • SB 1343Virginia Freedom of Information Act; proprietary records and trade secrets; carbon sequestration agreements.
  • SB 1365- Data governance; Office of Data Governance and Analytics; Chief Data Officer; Virginia Data Commission; report.
  • SB 1389Virginia Residential Property Disclosure Act; required disclosures; repetitive risk loss structure; flood risk information form.
  • SB1392Consumer Data Protection Act.
  • SB1206Marijuana; legalization; retail sales; penalties.
  • SB1410Active military or a military spouse; prohibits discrimination in public accommodations, etc.
  • SB1418Grants from the Commonwealth’s Development Opportunity Fund; waiver or reduction of capital investment and local match requirement.
  • SB1429Disposition of property previously used by the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services as the Southwestern Virginia Mental Health Institute.
  • SB1458Secretary of Commerce and Trade; Identity Management Standards Advisory Council.
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General Laws and Technology Committee 2021 hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee: 1/13   1/20  1/27  2/2  2/10  2/17   2/24

When Virginia’s General Assembly first took up legislation billed as a major step toward giving regular people more control over their data in an increasingly online world, some of the first testimony lawmakers heard came from tech giants like Microsoft and Amazon.

Both companies said they were in full support of Virginia’s effort to become just the second state in America to pass its own data privacy bill, an early marker in a debate still unfolding in other states and at the national level.

Supporters of Virginia’s Consumer Data Protection Act, approved by the General Assembly this year and already signed by Gov. Ralph Northam, say the fact that Virginia was able to pass such significant legislation without a major fight is a testament to the quality of the bill, which lays out new consumer protections while largely shielding companies from a flood of data-related lawsuits.

Noting that an estimated 70 percent of internet traffic flows through servers in Virginia, Sen. Dave Marsden, D-Fairfax, said Virginia’s legislation could be “a good starting place for a national privacy bill.”

Virginia lawmakers ban police use of facial recognition
AP, Denise LavoieMarch 29, 2021 (Short)

Last month, Virginia lawmakers quietly passed one of the most restrictive bans in the country on the use of facial recognition technology.

The legislation, which won unusually broad bipartisan support, prohibits all local law enforcement agencies and campus police departments from purchasing or using facial recognition technology unless it is expressly authorized by the state legislature.

But now, some law enforcement officials are asking Gov. Ralph Northam to put the brakes on the legislation, arguing that it is overly broad and hasn’t been thoroughly vetted.

Virginia Senate bill demands Metro change station
Washington PostFebruary 23, 2021 (Short)

State Legislatures across the U.S. are making privacy a priority out of the gate in 2021. The number of states with proposed privacy legislation up for consideration continues to grow, including bills in Washington and Virginia that are already seeing movement.

While the track of the Washington Privacy Act has accrued quite the following, Senate Bill 1392 for Virginia’s Consumer Data Protection Act has begun gaining traction. On Jan. 27, 2021, the Virginia Senate Committee on General Laws and Technology voted 13–0 with one abstention in favor of moving the bill forward to the Senate Finance Committee for further consideration and debate.

“Mr. Chairman, it is time,” State Sen. David Marsden, D-Va., during the meeting. Marsden introduced the bill to the Senate Jan. 13. “It is time that we find a meaningful way of protecting the citizens of the Commonwealth of Virginia’s data. … Virginia is in a unique position to be a leader on this issue. There’s a huge amount of the data on the internet that flows through the commonwealth. Privacy is not a new issue.”

Meets on: Wednesday at 30 minutes after adjournment in Senate Room 3, The Capitol

Members:  George Barker (Chair)  –  John Bell –  Jennifer Boysko  – Siobhan Dunnavant  – Adam Ebbin – Ghazala Hashmi  – Jen Kiggans  – Mamie Locke  – Monty Mason  –  Jeremy McPike  –  Todd Pillion  –  Bryce Reeves  – Frank Ruff  – Richard Stuart  –  Jill Vogel

(8 Democrats and 7 Republicans)

Subcommittees: None

 

Judiciary Committee

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Judiciary bills passed by the General Assembly
Virginia Legislative Information System

Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”)

  • SB 1108: General district courts; jurisdictional limits
  • SB 1113: Communicating threats of death or bodily injury to a person with intent to intimidate; penalty
  • SB 1119: Law-enforcement agencies; body-worn camera systems
  • SB 1122: Habitual offenders; repeals remaining provisions of Habitual Offender Act
  • SB 1138: Sexually transmitted infections; infected sexual battery, penalty
  • SB 1142: Marriage; persons who may celebrate rites, authorizes current members of the General Assembly
  • SB 1165: Death penalty; abolition of current penalty
  • SB 1168: “Abused or neglected child;” definition
  • SB 1181: Special immigrant juvenile status; jurisdiction
  • SB 1184: Standby guardianship; triggering event
  • SB 1209: Subcontractor’s employees; liability of general contractor for wages
  • SB 1213: Restricted licenses; DMV authorized to issue
  • SB 1234: Virginia State Bar examination; foreign applicants, evidence required
  • SB 1241: Personal injury claim; disclosure of insurance policy limits
  • SB 1242: Personal appearance by two-way electronic video and audio communication; entry of plea
  • SB 1248: Juveniles; competency evaluation, receipt of court order
  • SB 1256: Criminal Justice Services Board and Committee on Training; membership
  • SB 1261: Court of Appeals; expands jurisdiction, increases from 11 to 17 number of judges on Court
  • SB 1262: Restricted permit; prepayment of fines and costs
  • SB 1266: Admission to bail; rebuttable presumptions against bail
  • SB 1272: Unrestorably incompetent defendant; disposition, capital murder charge, inpatient custody
  • SB 1315: Criminal proceedings; consideration of mental condition & intellectual & developmental disabilities
  • SB 1316: Child care providers; background checks, portability
  • SB 1325: Visitation; petition of grandparent
  • SB 1336: Ignition interlock systems; restricted permits to operate a motor vehicle
  • SB 1339: Criminal records; sealing of records, Sealing Fee Fund created, penalties, report
  • SB 1381: Weapons; possessing or transporting within Capitol Square, etc
  • SB 1391: Pretrial data collection; VCSC to collect and disseminate on an annual basis
  • SB 1400: Tazewell County; quitclaim and conveyance of easement by Board of Wildlife Resources
  • SB 1415: Protective orders; violations of preliminary child protective order, changes punishment, etc
  • SB 1426: Orders of restitution; docketed on behalf of victim, enforcement
  • SB 1431: Unrestorably incompetent defendant; competency report
  • SB 1442: Public defender office; establishes an office for the County of Chesterfield
  • SB 1456: Juveniles; eligibility for commitment to the Department of Juvenile Justice
  • SB 1461: Bribery in correctional facilities; penalty
  • SB 1468: Victims of crime; certifications for victims of qualifying criminal activity
  • SB 1475: Search warrants; date and time of issuance, exceptions
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Judiciary 2021 Hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee: 1/18.1 1/18.2  1/18.3 1/20 1/25 1/27 2/1 2/3 2/9 2/10 2/15 2/17 2/22.1 2/22.2

Subcommittees:
Civil Law: 2/1 2/16
Criminal Law: 1/29

Virginia Senate Committee Kills Cyberflashing Bill
Brad KutnerFebruary 18, 2021 (Medium)

RICHMOND, Va. (CN) — Virginia’s Senate nixed a bill aiming to make unsolicited pictures of genitals or sex acts illegal after citing First Amendment concerns in a hearing Thursday.

“Sending an obscene picture should require consent from the recipient,” Delegate Kelly Convirs-Fowler argued regarding her bill, which sailed through the state’s House with unanimous consent.

“Sending one without consent should be the equivalent of cyberflashing,” the Virginia Beach Democrat said.

Convirs-Fowler defended the effort during a hearing of the state Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, saying the bill came from constituents who had been victimized by unwanted sexual photos sent via email, text or even during video-streamed events.

McClellan’s bill was met with debate from other lawmakers in the Senate Judiciary committee, such as Sen. Chap Petersen, D-Fairfax, over the bill’s language. McClellan asked Petersen if he wanted to add an amendment. He said he didn’t.

“I just want this bill to go away,” Petersen said.

Petersen questioned if his wife asking men “to move the furniture for her” constituted sexual harassment. Multiple lawmakers said the bill’s language was too broad.

Law360's Tort Report: Med Mal Damages Bill Fails In Virginia
Law360, Y. Peter KangMarch 9, 2021 (Medium)

A bid to overturn Virginia’s cap on medical malpractice damages ended last month when the state’s General Assembly adjourned its legislative session without taking action on a bill that was being supported by an attorney best known for representing Paula Jones in her sexual harassment suit against President Bill Clinton.

S.B. 1107, which would have eliminated the current $2.45 million total damages limit for medical malpractice payouts, didn’t make it out of the Senate Judiciary Committee before the legislative session ended on Feb. 11.

Washington, D.C.-based attorney Joe Cammarata had garnered the support of state Sen. Bill Stanley, a Republican, to move the legislation forward, but to no avail. Cammarata, a partner with personal injury firm Chaikin Sherman Cammarata & Siegel PC, served as one of Jones’ attorneys in her suit against Clinton in the late 1990s, a case that ultimately ended in an $850,000 settlement.

More rights for Va. disabled and domestic workers
Fauquier Now, David TranMarch 5, 2021 (Medium)

The two bills amending the Human Rights Act that lawmakers could not advance would have strengthened current workplace sexual harassment laws.

Del. Vivian E. Watts (D-Fairfax) introduced HB 2155 to expand and clarify the definition of workplace harassment and sexual harassment. The bill passed the House but died in the Senate Judiciary Committee by a vote of 6-7. It was the delegate’s second attempt to pass such protections.

The Senate companion bill, SB 1360, reported out of the Senate Judiciary committee, but was sent back and never picked back up. Patroned by Sen. McClellan, the legislation died over concerns on the bill’s absence of employers’ liabilities, especially for small businesses.

Meets at: Wednesday at Monday, 8:00 a.m. and Wednesday, 30 minutes after adjournment in Senate Room A, Pocahontas Building

Members: John Edwards (Chair) – Jennifer Boysko – Ben Chafin  – Creigh Deeds – Louise Lucas – Jennifer McClellanRyan McDougle – Joe Morrissey –Tommy Norment – Mark Obenshain – Chap Petersen –Dick Saslaw –Bill Stanley – Richard Stuart – Scott Surovell 

(9 Democrats and 6 Republicans)

Subcommittees:

  • Civil Law
  • Criminal Law

 

Local Government Committee

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Local Government bills passed by General Assembly
Virginia Legislative Information System

Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”)

  • SB 1120: County executive form of government; local budgets
  • SB 1128: Norfolk, City of; amending charter, general updates
  • SB 1136: License plates, special; repeals issuance of certain plates
  • SB 1216: Crewe, Town of; amending charter, changes to charter including town council, elections and powers
  • SB 1152: Appomattox, Town of; amending charter, shifts local elections from May to November, etc
  • SB 1157: Municipal elections; shifting elections to November
  • SB 1207: Solar and energy storage projects; siting agreements throughout the Commonwealth
  • SB 1208: Continuity of government; extends period of time that locality may provide after disaster, etc
  • SB 1267: Covington, City of; amending charter, consolidated school division, salaries
  • SB 1270: Eminent domain; notice of intent to file certificate
  • SB 1298: Tourism improvement districts; authorizes any locality to create
  • SB 1309: Local stormwater assistance; flood mitigation and protection
  • SB 1385: Underground utility facilities; Fairfax County
  • SB 1393: Trees; replacement and conservation during development, effective date
  • SB 1399: Tourism Development Authority; name change
  • SB 1447: Buckingham County; fees for disposal of solid waste
  • SB 1457: Historic sites; urban county executive form of gov’t. (Fairfax County), provisions in its ordinance
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Local Government 2021 Hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee: 1/18  1/25  2/1  2/15  2/22

Subcommittees:
Charters: 2/15

RSA bill fails in committee
Daily Progess, Gracie Hart BrooksFebruary 9, 2021 (Medium)

A three-county marriage is in the midst of a divorce, senators said Monday.
Members of the Senate Committee on Local Government discussed Senate Bill 1355 during a Monday morning session. The bill would allow any member locality of the Rapidan Service Authority (RSA) to withdraw from the authority regardless of any outstanding bonds. The locality would need to meet certain requirements in order to do so including obtaining the unanimous consent of all holders of any outstanding bonds unless all such bonds have been paid or cashed or United States government obligations have been deposited for payment. Any written obligation to RSA incurred by the locality while a member of the authority would remain and the withdrawing locality would assume ownership and management of any RSA asset located within its limits and assume any debt related to said asset.

The bill was introduced by Senator Emmett Hanger, Jr. who represents the 24th District of which both RSA members Madison and Greene counties belong. Third RSA member Orange County is represented by Senator Bryce Reeves in the 17th District. The introduction of the bill came months after Greene County Supervisors passed a resolution asking to withdraw from the authority. Orange and Madison counties declined. In September, Greene County Supervisors filed two lawsuits against RSA.

November elections are more convenient and less confusing for voters, have massively higher voter turnout, and save taxpayers money compared to standalone May local elections. SB 1157, sponsored by Sen. Lionell Spruill (D-Chesapeake), would consolidate all Virginia local elections to November. It was successfully reported out of the Senate’s Local Government committee on Monday morning, January 18. Del. Cliff Hayes, Del. Kelly Convirs- Fowler, and Del. Nancy Guy are co-sponsoring the bill in the House of Delegates. In the last two days, Del. Shelly Simonds and Del. Clint Jenkins have also agreed to complete co-sponsor paperwork for the bill as well.

Despite separate May local elections costing Virginia taxpayers more, 115 Virginia localities – representing hundreds of thousands of Virginians – hold local elections in May, when voter turnout is abysmally low compared to November elections. Four of the Virginia localities that hold these anti-democratic, low-turnout May elections each have more than 89,000 registered voters: Chesapeake, Norfolk, Newport News, and Hampton.

Standalone municipal elections developed as efforts to decrease immigrant and minority voting. Historically and today, voters in low-turnout May elections tend to be whiter, wealthier, and older than November voters.

The Senate version of Jones’ bill, sponsored by Saslaw, initially contained a clause making it retroactive to March 1, 2020. But Senate committees ultimately stripped retroactivity from all three measures after the state’s Department of Planning and Budget warned the fiscal impact was “indeterminate.”

Localities, especially, have long argued that dating the bill back to March could lead to hundreds of additional COVID-19 claims from their employees, who would now be presumed to have contracted the virus on the job. That’s a financial burden that they — and their insurers — aren’t prepared to shoulder, representatives from cities and counties argued.

“Local governments and risk insurance providers haven’t budgeted for an expansion of the liability to cover additional presumptions related to COVID-19,” Jeremy Bennett, the director of intergovernmental affairs for the Virginia Association of Counties, said during a committee hearing last month, adding that it could have a “multi-million dollar impact.”

Senate lawmakers strip Chase of her last committee assignment
12onYourSide, Ned Oliver and Graham MoomawJanuary 19, 2021 (Short)

Lawmakers in the Virginia Senate stripped Sen. Amanda Chase, R-Chesterfield, of her last committee assignment Tuesday.

The post — a seat on the chamber’s typically sleepy panel on local government — is hardly sought after. But the decision, pushed by Democrats seeking to punish Chase for her support of the mob that stormed the U.S. Capitol, prompted a half hour of debate as some in the GOP worried about the precedent the decision might set.

“A concern that I have is, I am not certain where the boundaries will be drawn in the future,” said Senate Minority Leader Tommy Norment, R-James City. He had prefaced his comments by observing that he would not “be defending some of the controversial behavior of the senator from Chesterfield.

Meets on: Monday at 9:00 a.m. in Senate Room 3, Capitol

Members: Lewis, Lynwood (Chair) –  John Bell – Amanda Chase  – Bill DeSteph –Siobhan Dunnavant – Barbara Favola – Emmett Hanger  – Ghazala Hashmi  – Janet Howell – Jen Kiggans  –  Jeremy McPike –  Joe Morrissey  – Todd Pillion –Lionell Spruill  – Bill Stanley

(8 Democrats and 7 Republicans)

Subcommittees:

  • Charters

Privileges and Elections Committee (Senate)

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Privileges and Elections bills passed by General Assembly
Virginia Legislative Information System

Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”)

  • SB 1097: Absentee voting; witness signature not required
  • SB 1111: Elections; preservation of order at the polls, powers of officers of election
  • SB 1148: Elections; date of June primary election
  • SB 1239: Absentee voting; third-party absentee ballot assembly and distribution
  • SB 1245: Absentee voting; establishment of drop-off locations preprocessing returned absentee ballots
  • SB 1281: General registrar; qualifications, residency
  • SB 1331: Absentee voting; accessibility for voters with a visual impairment or print disability
  • SB 1395: Discrimination; prohibited in voting and elections administration, etc
  • SJ 270: Constitutional amendment; marriage (first reference)
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Privileges and Elections 2021 Hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee: 1/19  1/26  2/4 2/16

Lawmakers kill bill calling for transparency in redistricting commission
NBC29.com, Anya SczerzenieFebruary 19, 2021 (Short)

RICHMOND, Va. — The Virginia Senate killed a House proposal to expand access to the commonwealth’s new redistricting commission and help make the process more transparent and democratic.

House Bill 2082, patroned by Del. Mark Levine, D-Alexandria, would have required the redistricting commission meetings to be advertised and accessible to the public. The commission will draw the commonwealth’s electoral districts every 10 years. The General Assembly previously drew the districts.

The bill was passed by indefinitely in the Senate Privileges and Elections committee after passing the House with a 55-41 vote.

“During the debates on the commission, I kept saying ‘There’s no transparency here, there’s no transparency,’” Levine said. “Well, there wasn’t, and there isn’t. Without my legislation, the commission can meet in a dark room.

“If something as simple as avoiding the appearance of corruption in Virginia can’t pass, then we must seriously consider whether we have the right people representing us,” said Clean Virginia Executive Director Brennan Gilmore. “This bill would have caught Virginia up to 47 other states and the federal government. Yet, despite the bill conforming to widely accepted federal language, a majority of Virginia’s Senators couldn’t get the job done.”

The bill, introduced by Delegate Marcus Simon, passed the House unanimously on Feb. 1. HB 1952 defined “personal use” using the federal “irrespective test,” which states that any expense incurred that would exist irrespective of the candidate’s campaign for office is deemed ineligible for use of campaign funds, with the exception for childcare expenses.

The motion to refer the bill back to the Senate Privileges and Elections Committee occurred against the expressed wishes of Senator Creigh Deeds, the Committee Chair, who asked on the floor that Senators pass the bill instead.

Virginia Senate panel advances campaign finance reform bill
Tulsa World, Sarah RankinFebruary 16, 2021 (Short)

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — A Virginia Senate committee advanced a House measure Tuesday that would prevent politicians from putting campaign funds toward personal uses, with an exception for child care-related expenses.

The bill’s continued advancement this year seems to be a breakthrough on an issue lawmakers have previously been reluctant to tackle. Virginia has one of the least restrictive and policed campaign finance systems in the country, with lawmakers only barred from using campaign funds for personal use once they close out their accounts.

The measure’s sponsor, Democratic Del. Marcus Simon, said the matter is one of both optics and integrity.

During a legislative hearing, Locke said voting is a fundamental right that shouldn’t be taken away, and argued that the policy’s racist origins should be addressed by scrapping it completely. A coalition of civil rights groups backed Locke’s proposal.

It was ultimately amended to mirror a proposal from the House that would automatically restore voting rights for people who complete their prison sentences. House Majority Leader Charniele Herring, D-Alexandria, introduced that resolution.
“Automatic restoration of rights is not racial justice,” Locke said before the Senate Privileges and Elections Committee on Feb. 4. “It is beyond dispute that felony disenfranchisement is as Jim Crow as poll taxes.

Meets on: Tuesday at 15 minutes after adjournment in Senate Room 3, The Capitol

Members: Creigh Deeds (Chair)  –  John Bell – Jennifer Boysko – Adam Ebbin –  Janet Howell – Monty Mason   Jennifer McClellan  –  Ryan McDougle – Mark Peake – Bryce Reeves –  Frank Ruff – Lionell Spruill – Scott Surovell   – Jill Vogel

(9 Democrats and 5 Republicans)

Subcommittees: None

 

Rehabilitation and Social Services

Rehab and Social Services Committee – Host, Senator Barbara Favola
May 20, 2021 – 6:00 pm to 7:00 pm (ET)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lQBi2FKpr6g

This aircast was focused on the recent activities of the Senate Rehabilitation and Social Services committee. A recording of this livestream is also archived in the Virginia onAir YouTube channel. The links below will open the YouTube video as a new tab and start at the designated time.

For more information:Rehabilitation and Social Services Committee Post

Curator:

Host:

  • Senator Barbara Favola, Chair, Rehabilitation and Social Services Committee – district31@senate.virginia.gov

Producer:

Lead Sponsor: US onAir Network

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Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”)

  • SB 1297: Emergency order for adult protective services; acts of violence, etc., or financial exploitation
  • SB 1299: Alcoholic beverage control; sale and delivery of mixed beverages and pre-mixed wine
  • SB 1300: Inmates; Board of Local and Regional Jails to review services provided during pregnancy, etc
  • SB 1321: Confirmatory adoption; expands the stepparent adoption provisions
  • SB 1328: State-Funded Kinship Guardianship Assistance program; created
  • SB 1366: Aging services; economic and social needs
  • SB 1397: Parole and conditional release; notice by electronic means and certification
  • SB 1428: Alcoholic beverage control; operation of government stores, sale of low alcohol beverage coolers
  • SB 1471: Alcoholic beverage control; local special events license, taxes and fees
  • SB 1472: Individuals w/ intellectual & developmental disabilities; DMAS to study use of virtual support, etc
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Rehabilitation and Social Services 2021 Hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee:  1/15 1/22 1/29 2/12 2/16  2/19

Subcommittees:
ABC: none during 2021 Session
Marijuana: 1/19
Social Service and Corrections: 1/20

Virginia senate defeats bill to restore parole
WSLS, Denise LavoieJanuary 29, 2021 (Medium)

RICHMOND, Va. – A bill that would have restored parole in Virginia was killed Friday after lawmakers heard emotional testimony from family members of crime victims who pleaded with them to guarantee their assailants would stay locked up.

The Senate Rehabilitation and Social Services Committee voted to send the measure to the Virginia State Crime Commission for study, ending the bill’s chances of passing this year.

Virginia abolished discretionary parole in 1995 and began requiring offenders to serve at least 85 percent of their sentences.

A Virginia Senate committee on Friday approved a bill to legalize marijuana in the Commonwealth, bringing the proposal one step closer to a full floor vote. Before advancing the legislation to another panel, lawmakers defeated a proposal to remove home cultivation rights for cannabis.

The Senate Rehabilitation and Social Services Committee approved the legislation in a 8-7 vote. Members also accepted a series of recommended amendments from a newly formed subcommittee that’s singularly focused on marijuana policy and that held two hearings on the bill earlier this week.

The legislation, which was unveiled by Gov. Ralph Northam (D) last week and is being carried by top Senate and House leaders, would create a system of regulated and taxed marijuana sales and production, and allow adults 21 and older to purchase and possess up to one ounce of cannabis and cultivate up to four plants for personal use, two of which could be mature.

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Nine of the 11 Virginia state senators who voted against a bill that would have abolished for-profit prison management by 2024 received campaign contributions ahead of this year’s General Assembly session from the company operating the state’s only privately run facility, according to campaign finance reports.

On Jan. 15, the Virginia Senate Rehabilitation and Social Services Committee debated SB 1179, proposed by Sen. Adam Ebbin (D-Alexandria), that sought to end the for-profit prison management system in the commonwealth by stripping the authority of the director of Virginia’s Department of Corrections to enter into contracts with private prison operators.

The only prison in Virginia not operated by the Department of Corrections is Lawrenceville Correctional Center, which has been run by GEO Group, Inc., a Florida-based private prison contractor, since 2003.

Proposal to end for-profit prison management fails in Virginia Senate
Virginia Mercury, Ned OliverJanuary 15, 2021 (Short)

A proposal to bring Virginia’s only privately operated prison under state management failed in the General Assembly on Friday when it was voted down by members of the Senate’s Rehabilitation and Social Services Committee.

The decision means GEO Group, a publicly traded corporation based in Florida, will likely continue to oversee the Lawrenceville Correctional Center in Brunswick County, where advocates and some lawmakers worried persistent staffing shortages have jeopardized inmate safety.

“They do not hold up their end of the contract as far as medical, dental,” said Franchesca Hylton, who told lawmakers during a hearing on the legislation that her husband is an inmate at the facility and was not getting proper care for his heart condition. “There’s a lot of stuff going on at that facility that shouldn’t be.”

Meets on:  Friday at 8:30 a.m. in Senate Room A, Pocahontas Building

Members: Barbara Favola (Chair) – Jennifer Boysko – John Cosgrove – Bill DeSteph – Emmett Hanger – Jen Kiggans – Mamie Locke – Monty Mason – Ryan McDougle – Jeremy McPike –  Joe Morrissey – Bryce Reeves – Lionell  Spruill – Scott Surovell

(8 Democrats and 6 Republicans)

Subcommittees:

  • ABC
  • Marijuana
  • Social Services

Below is a short summary by Chair Barbara Favola about what the Rehabilitation and Social Services committee does.

Rules Committee (Senate)

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Rules Committee bills passed by the General Assembly
Virginia Legislative Information System

Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”

  • SB 1126 Transportation District Commission of Hampton Roads; change in membership.
  • SB 1273 Behavioral Health Commission; created, report.
  • SB 1414 Henrietta Lacks Commission; extends sunset provision.
  • SB 1473 Health Insurance Reform Commission; mandated health insurance benefit or provider.
  • SJ 293 Assisted living and auxiliary grants; Joint Commission on Health Care to study available data.
  • SJ 294 JLARC; costs of education, report.

 

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Rules 2021 Committee Hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee: 1/22 1/29 2/12 2/19 

Meets on: The call of the Chair

MembersMamie Locke (Chair) – George Barker – Creigh Deeds – John Edwards – Barbara Favola – Janet Howell – Lynwood Lewis – Louise Lucas – Dave Marsden – Ryan McDougle – Jeremy McPike – Tommy Norment  –   Chap Petersen – Dick Saslaw  – Jill Vogel

(12 Democrats and 3 Republicans)

Subcommittees: None

 

Transportation Committee (Senate)

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Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”

  • SB 1126 Transportation District Commission of Hampton Roads; change in membership.
  • SB 1136 License plates, special; repeals issuance of certain plates.
  • SB 1144 Aircraft civil; registration and licensing.
  • SB 1160 Removal of vehicles involved in accidents; lien of keeper of vehicles.
  • SB 1212 New River Valley Passenger Rail Station Authority; creation of authority in Planning District 4.
  • SB 1214 Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority; repeals effective date for creation of Authority.
  • SB 1229 License plates, special; issuance for supporters of Ducks Unlimited, fees.
  • SB 1253 Access roads to economic development sites; criteria for use of funds.
  • SB 1259 Virginia Highway Corporation Act; alteration of certificate of authority, powers and duties of SCC.
  • SB 1260 Transportation purposes; entry onto land for inspection.
  • SB 1277 Motor Vehicles, Department of, and Supreme Court of Virginia; repeals reporting requirement.
  • SB 1329 Summons; promises to appear after issuance.
  • SB 1335 Learner’s permits; use of personal communication devices, restrictions.
  • SB 1350 Transportation funding; statewide prioritization process, resiliency.
  • SB 1470 Vehicle registration; special communication needs indicator.
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Transportation 2021 Committee Hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee: 1/20 1/21 1/28 1/29 2/3 2/11 2/18

Should Virginia bus systems go fare free forever?
Virginia Mercury, Wyatt Gordon April 6, 2021 (Medium)

When the General Assembly created the Transit Rider Incentive Program (TRIP) as part of Gov. Ralph Northam’s 2020 transportation omnibus, the lion’s share of the funding was allocated to support new regional bus routes. With COVID’s cancellation of much commuter service across the commonwealth, those dollars are now being dedicated to TRIP’s secondary goal: fare free transit pilot projects.

With large localities like Lynchburg, Roanoke, Alexandria, Richmond, Charlottesville, and Fairfax County now expressing interest in eliminating bus fares for at least three years, could the shift to zero fares in Virginia become permanent?

Nearly every transit system in the commonwealth dropped fares last year as a public health measure in response to COVID, but until recently none had announced intentions to make that move to protect riders and operators more permanent. Based on the responses to a request for ideas DRPT issued to transit providers last fall, the list of bus systems seeking to stay fare free beyond the pandemic could soon grow substantially longer.

Greenway Tolls Bill Advances; Reid Bill Dropped
Renss Greene February 19, 2021 (Short)

Subramanyam’s bill and its Senate twin, Sen. John J. Bell (D-13)’s Senate Bill 1259, have many elements of bills introduced and killed every year since Subramanyam’s predecessor David I. Ramadan held office. This year, it enjoys the broadest support among Loudoun’s state delegation of any bill of its type in that time, and is now headed to the Senate floor, possibly for a final vote. The Senate bill has already passed both chambers. One of its co-patrons, Sen. Jennifer B. Boysko (D-33), serves on the Senate transportation committee.

However, the bill still faces some opposition from the Greenway’s powerful lobbying firm, Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP, and lawmakers sympathetic to the Australia-based multinational firm that owns the Greenway, Atlas Arteria.

The bill seeks to create measurable standards for evaluating whether proposed toll increases would discourage use of the highway—something many Loudouners say is already happening, as they avoid Greenway tolls when they can. Under the law governing the Greenway, toll increases should not discourage use.

Meets on: Thursday at 15 minutes after adjournment in Senate Room 3, The Capitol

MembersDave Marsden (Chair) –  Jennifer Boysko – John Cosgrove – Bill DeSteph – Adam Ebbin – Barbara Favola – Jennifer McClellan – Jeremy McPike – Steve Newman – Mark Obenshain – Mark Peake – Todd Pillion – Lionell Spruill – Dave Suetterlein – Scott Surovell

(8 Democrats and 7 Republicans)

Subcommittees: None

Agriculture, Conservation and Natural Resources CommitteeAgriculture, Conservation and Natural Resources Committee

Meets at: Tuesday, 1/2 hour after adjournment, Senate Room A, Pocahontas Building

Members: Chap Petersen (Chair) – Barbara Favola – Emmett Hanger – Ghazala Hashmi – Lynwood Lewis – Dave Marsden – Monty Mason – Jennifer McClellan –  Joe Morrissey  – Mark Obenshain – Todd Pillion – Frank Ruff –Bill Stanley – Richard Stuart – Dave Suetterlein 

(8 Democrats and 7 Republicans)

Subcommittees:

  • Companion Animals
  • Hemp
  • Menhaden
i

Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”

  • SB 1135 Dangerous dogs; restructures procedure for adjudication, penalty. 
  • SB 1164 Advanced recycling; not considered solid waste management, definition. 
  • SB 1188 Virginia Agriculture Food Assistance Program and Fund; established and created. 
  • SB 1193 Dairy Producer Margin Coverage Premium Assistance Program; established. 
  • SB 1194 Produce safety; removes the sunset date. 
  • SB 1196 Teachers and other licensed school board employees; cultural competency. 
  • SB 1199 Conservation easements; construction. 
  • SB 1210 Permit fee schedules; DEQ to revise current schedule for nonhazardous solid waste mgmt. facilities. 
  • SB 1220 State facilities; admission of certain aliens. 
  • SB 1258 Solar projects; erosion and sediment control. 
  • SB 1265 Natural gas pipelines; stop work orders. 
  • SB 1274 Wildlife corridors; various agencies to consider and incorporate. 
  • SB 1280 Dams; negotiated settlement agreements. 
  • SB 1282 Greenhouse gas emissions inventory; regulations. 
  • SB 1290 ConserveVirginia program; established. 
  • SB 1291 Va. Water Protection Permit; withdrawal of surface water or ground water, plans for water auditing. 
  • SB 1311 Water quality standards; modification of permits and certifications. 
  • SB 1319 Waste Diversion & Recycling Task Force; Department of Environmental Quality to continue Task Force. SB 1354 Chesapeake Bay; wastewater treatment, Enhanced Nutrient Removal Certainty Program established. 
  • SB 1374 Carbon Sequestration Task Force; established. 
  • SB 1379 Humane Cosmetics Act; civil penalties. 
  • SB 1396 Onsite Sewage Indemnification Fund; use of Fund for grants to certain property owners. .
  • SB 1402 Trout fishing in stocked waters; equalizes for residents and nonresidents requirements to fish. 
  • SB 1404 Stormwater Local Assistance Fund; grants awarded for projects related to Chesapeake Bay. 
  • SB 1411 Peanuts; extends sunset date of excise tax on all peanuts grown in Virginia. 
  • SB 1412 Pet shops, dealers, and dog breeders; employees convicted of animal abuse, penalty. 
  • SB 1417 Animal testing facilities; definitions, adoption of dogs and cats, civil penalty. 
  • SB 1453 Mines and Mining and Virginia Energy Plan; revision of Titles 45.1 and 67. 
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Agriculture, Conservation and Natural Resources 2021 hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee: 1/19  1/26  2/4  2/16 

Subcommittees:

Companion Animals: 1/25

Menhaden: 1/28 

On Virginia’s rural coast, resiliency and Chesapeake Bay conservation goals collide amid sea level rise
Virginia Mercury, The geography of Mathews County was carved by catastrophe. Thirty-five million years ago, a meteorite or comet tore through the Earth’s atmosphere and slammed into its surface somewhere between the county and what is now called Cape Charles. In the ruin it left behind, the Chesapeake Bay would form. Mathews, at the very tip of Virginia’s Middle Peninsula, remains one of the state’s lowest-lying areas, surrounded on three sides by the Chesapeake Bay and the waters that flow into it. “We’re flat as a pancake,” said Thomas Jenkins, the county’s planning, zoning and wetlands director. “Much of the county is close to sea level.” Today a far slower but perhaps no less catastrophic force is reshaping Mathews. As climate change drives seas upward, the county is struggling to keep its waterfront properties above the tides. March 31, 2021 (Medium)

The geography of Mathews County was carved by catastrophe.

Thirty-five million years ago, a meteorite or comet tore through the Earth’s atmosphere and slammed into its surface somewhere between the county and what is now called Cape Charles. In the ruin it left behind, the Chesapeake Bay would form. Mathews, at the very tip of Virginia’s Middle Peninsula, remains one of the state’s lowest-lying areas, surrounded on three sides by the Chesapeake Bay and the waters that flow into it.

“We’re flat as a pancake,” said Thomas Jenkins, the county’s planning, zoning and wetlands director. “Much of the county is close to sea level.”

Today a far slower but perhaps no less catastrophic force is reshaping Mathews. As climate change drives seas upward, the county is struggling to keep its waterfront properties above the tides.

Top News

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Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”

  • SB 1135 Dangerous dogs; restructures procedure for adjudication, penalty. 
  • SB 1164 Advanced recycling; not considered solid waste management, definition. 
  • SB 1188 Virginia Agriculture Food Assistance Program and Fund; established and created. 
  • SB 1193 Dairy Producer Margin Coverage Premium Assistance Program; established. 
  • SB 1194 Produce safety; removes the sunset date. 
  • SB 1196 Teachers and other licensed school board employees; cultural competency. 
  • SB 1199 Conservation easements; construction. 
  • SB 1210 Permit fee schedules; DEQ to revise current schedule for nonhazardous solid waste mgmt. facilities. 
  • SB 1220 State facilities; admission of certain aliens. 
  • SB 1258 Solar projects; erosion and sediment control. 
  • SB 1265 Natural gas pipelines; stop work orders. 
  • SB 1274 Wildlife corridors; various agencies to consider and incorporate. 
  • SB 1280 Dams; negotiated settlement agreements. 
  • SB 1282 Greenhouse gas emissions inventory; regulations. 
  • SB 1290 ConserveVirginia program; established. 
  • SB 1291 Va. Water Protection Permit; withdrawal of surface water or ground water, plans for water auditing. 
  • SB 1311 Water quality standards; modification of permits and certifications. 
  • SB 1319 Waste Diversion & Recycling Task Force; Department of Environmental Quality to continue Task Force. SB 1354 Chesapeake Bay; wastewater treatment, Enhanced Nutrient Removal Certainty Program established. 
  • SB 1374 Carbon Sequestration Task Force; established. 
  • SB 1379 Humane Cosmetics Act; civil penalties. 
  • SB 1396 Onsite Sewage Indemnification Fund; use of Fund for grants to certain property owners. .
  • SB 1402 Trout fishing in stocked waters; equalizes for residents and nonresidents requirements to fish. 
  • SB 1404 Stormwater Local Assistance Fund; grants awarded for projects related to Chesapeake Bay. 
  • SB 1411 Peanuts; extends sunset date of excise tax on all peanuts grown in Virginia. 
  • SB 1412 Pet shops, dealers, and dog breeders; employees convicted of animal abuse, penalty. 
  • SB 1417 Animal testing facilities; definitions, adoption of dogs and cats, civil penalty. 
  • SB 1453 Mines and Mining and Virginia Energy Plan; revision of Titles 45.1 and 67. 
i
Agriculture, Conservation and Natural Resources 2021 hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee: 1/19  1/26  2/4  2/16 

Subcommittees:

Companion Animals: 1/25

Menhaden: 1/28 

On Virginia’s rural coast, resiliency and Chesapeake Bay conservation goals collide amid sea level rise
Virginia Mercury, The geography of Mathews County was carved by catastrophe. Thirty-five million years ago, a meteorite or comet tore through the Earth’s atmosphere and slammed into its surface somewhere between the county and what is now called Cape Charles. In the ruin it left behind, the Chesapeake Bay would form. Mathews, at the very tip of Virginia’s Middle Peninsula, remains one of the state’s lowest-lying areas, surrounded on three sides by the Chesapeake Bay and the waters that flow into it. “We’re flat as a pancake,” said Thomas Jenkins, the county’s planning, zoning and wetlands director. “Much of the county is close to sea level.” Today a far slower but perhaps no less catastrophic force is reshaping Mathews. As climate change drives seas upward, the county is struggling to keep its waterfront properties above the tides. March 31, 2021 (Medium)

The geography of Mathews County was carved by catastrophe.

Thirty-five million years ago, a meteorite or comet tore through the Earth’s atmosphere and slammed into its surface somewhere between the county and what is now called Cape Charles. In the ruin it left behind, the Chesapeake Bay would form. Mathews, at the very tip of Virginia’s Middle Peninsula, remains one of the state’s lowest-lying areas, surrounded on three sides by the Chesapeake Bay and the waters that flow into it.

“We’re flat as a pancake,” said Thomas Jenkins, the county’s planning, zoning and wetlands director. “Much of the county is close to sea level.”

Today a far slower but perhaps no less catastrophic force is reshaping Mathews. As climate change drives seas upward, the county is struggling to keep its waterfront properties above the tides.

Summary

Meets at: Tuesday, 1/2 hour after adjournment, Senate Room A, Pocahontas Building

Members: Chap Petersen (Chair) – Barbara Favola – Emmett Hanger – Ghazala Hashmi – Lynwood Lewis – Dave Marsden – Monty Mason – Jennifer McClellan –  Joe Morrissey  – Mark Obenshain – Todd Pillion – Frank Ruff –Bill Stanley – Richard Stuart – Dave Suetterlein 

(8 Democrats and 7 Republicans)

Subcommittees:

  • Companion Animals
  • Hemp
  • Menhaden

About

From Senate Rules, “A Committee on Agriculture, Conservation and Natural Resources, 15 Senators, to consider matters concerning agriculture; air and water pollution and solid waste disposal; conservation of land and water resources; crustaceans and bivalves; all matters of environment, forest, fresh and saltwater fishing, game, mining, parks and recreation, and petroleum products”.

Web

LIS webpages

Subcommittees

Companion Animals

Meets on: Thursday at 9:00 a.m. in Senate Subcommittee Room #1, Pocahontas Building.

Members:  Dave Marsden (Chair), Barbara Favola,  Todd Pillion

 

Hemp

Meets on: Wednesday at 8:30 a.m. in Subcommittee Room 3, 5th Fl. Pocahontas Bldg

Members:   Joe Morrissey (Chair),  Frank Ruff,  Dave Suetterlein 

Menhaden

Meets on:  TBD

Members:  

Lynwood Lewis (Chair),  Monty MasonJennifer McClellan,  Richard Stuart

Bills

Bills reported out 

SB 1135 – Dangerous dogs, restructures procedures for adjudication, penalty (January 26, 2021)

  • Senator David W. Marsden introduced a bill to reorganize code section arounds dangerous dogs to provide better sequencing and clarity for animal control officers, dog owners, courts, and victims.
  • Voted to report bill with amendment for technicalities 12 – Yeas 0 – Nays.

SB 1379 – Humane Cosmetics Act; civil penalties (January 26, 2021)

  • Senator David W. Marsden sponsored a bill that prohibits the sales of cosmetics tested on animals by any manufacturers in the Commonwealth.
  • Voted to report bill with amendment to change enforcement body from Commonwealth’s attorneys to Commonwealth attorney general 10 – Yeas 4 – Nays.

SB 1390 – Cats; trap, neuter, and return programs; civil penalty (January 26, 2021)

  • Senator Lynwood W. Lewis sponsored a bill that authorizes localities to adopt the policy of public or private animal shelters, releasing agencies, or hospitals and clinics to trap, neuter, and release to original place of entrapment for cats in the surrounding areas.
  • Voted to report bill with technical amendment 11 – Yeas 3 – Nays.

SB 1412 – Pet shops, dealers, and dog breeders; employees convicted of animal abuse or cruelty, civil penalty (January 26, 2021)

  • Senator William M. Stanley sponsored a bill that prohibits someone previously convicted of animal abuse or cruelty from working in a pet shop, as a dealer, or as a commercial dog breeder.
  • Voted to report bill with amendment from requiring a signed signature stating no previous convictions to outright prohibiting work in pet shops, as dealers, or as commercial dog breeders 11 – Yeas 3 – Nays.

SB 1417 – Animal testing facilities; adoption of dogs and cats, civil penalty (January 26, 2021)

  • Senator William M. Stanley sponsored a bill that requires any animal testing facility that no longer has a need for a cat or dog in their possession, which does not pose a health or safety risk to the public, be offered up for adoption to a releasing agency or through a private placement up to 3 weeks prior to euthanasia.
  • Voted to report bill with amendment clarifying amount of time prior to euthanasia 14 – Yeas 0 – Nays.

SB 1115 – Industrial hemp; increase maximum THC concentration (January 26, 2021)

  • Senator Mark J. Peake introduced the original bill that was amended to declare that the Commonwealth will not prosecute or punish any hemp crop of that which the THC concentration is at 1%.
  • Voted to report bill with amendment from allowing to not punishing 13 – Yeas 0 – Nays 1 – Abs.

SB 1453 – Mines and Mining and Virginia Energy Plan; revision of Titles 45.1 and 67 (January 26, 2021)

  • Senator John Edwards sponsored a bill to completely revise Title 45.1 and 67 of the Virginia Energy Policy and merge them to create Title 45.2.
  • Voted to report bill with no amendments 15 – Yeas 0 – Nays.

SB 1143 – Wetlands; extension of certain permits through 2021 (January 26, 2021)

  • Senator John A. Cosgrove, Sr. sponsored a bill that would extend existing wetlands permits that have been issued between March 1st, 2020 and July 1st, 2021 until January 1st, 2022.
  • Voted to report bill with no amendments 15 – Yeas 0 – Nays.

SB 1396 – Equity and Water Treatment Act (January 26, 2021)

  • Senator Ghazala F. Hasmi sponsored a bill that establishes that the Commonwealth’s policy is to have equitable access to wastewater treatment to protect public health and the environment. It establishes an interagency working group and directs the Department of Environmental Policy to partner with the Department of Health to quantify the funding needs for the public.
  • Voted to report bill and refer it to Finance Committee 12 – Yeas 3 – Nays.

SB 1210 – Environmental permit fees; Va. Waste Management Budget to adopt regulations to collect (January 26, 2021)

  • Senator J. Chapman Petersen sponsored a section 1 bill to put together a work group to find a middle ground which would make the regulatory waste management, wastewater, and landfills programs self-funding.
  • Voted to report bill and refer it to Finance Committee 15 – Yeas 0 – Nays.

SB 1282 – Greenhouse gas emissions inventory; regulations (January 26, 2021)

  • Senator Joe Morrissey sponsored a bill that which gives DEQ and the Air Quality Board the authority to collect baseline data for Virginia air emissions.
  • Voted to report bill and refer it to Finance Committee 9 – Yeas 6 – Nays.

SB 1161 – Virginia Soil and Water Conservation Board; clarifies membership (January 19, 2021)

  • Senator Emmett W. Hangar sponsored a bill that would ensure there is a regional dispersion of appointments across the Commonwealth with the Governor. It also further clarifies the membership requirements for the Conservation Board.
  • Voted to report bill with technical amendments 15 – Yeas 0 – Nays.

SB 1188 – Virginia Agriculture Food Assistance Program and Fund (January 19, 2021)

  • Senator Ghazala F. Hashmi sponsored a bill that would establish the Agriculture Food Assistance Program to both assist Virginia farmers and address the growing crisis of food insecurity within the Commonwealth.
  • Voted to report bill and refer to Finance Committee 15 – Yeas 0 – Nays.

SB 1193 – Dairy Producer Margin Coverage Premium Assistance Program; established (January 19, 2021)

  • Senator Mark Obenshain sponsored a bill to which offers incentives for dairy farmers to participate in the federal dairy margin program and to adopt nutrient management plans in exchange for conservation commitments from the dairy farmers.
  • Voted to report bill and refer to Finance Committee 15 – Yeas 0 – Nays.

SB 1194 – Produce safety; removes the sunset date (January 19, 2021)

  • Senator Mark Obenshain sponsored a bill that would prolong Title 3.2 on produce safety (2017) that was set to expire on July 1, 2022.
  • Voted to report bill with no amendments 14 – Yeahs 0 – Nays 1 – Abs.

SB 1258 – Solar Projects; erosion and sediment control (January 19, 2021)

  • Senator David W. Marsden sponsored a bill that authorizes the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality to administer erosion and sediment control programs on behalf of small localities.
  • Voted to report bill with technical amendments and refer to Finance Committee 15 – Yeas 0 – Nays.

SB 1280 – Dams; negotiated settlement agreements (January 19, 2021)

  • Senator John J. Bell sponsored a bill that authorizes the Virginia Soil and Water Conservation Board to enter into negotiated settlement agreements to correct safety and structural issues on dams regulated by the board.
  • Voted to report bill with no amendments 15 – Yeas 0 – Nays.

SB 1274 – Government planning; wildlife corridors (January 19, 2021)

  • Senator David W. Marsden sponsored a bill that will direct various Commonwealth agencies to connect areas for wildlife corridors in order to prevent wildlife caused traffic accidents and property damage.
  • Voted to report bill with technical amendments 11 – Yeas 0 – Nays.

SB 1290 – ConserveVirginia program; established (January 19, 2021)

  • Senator T. Montgomery “Monty” Mason sponsored a bill that of which uses data points to map lands throughout the Commonwealth in order to set up conservation points.
  • Voted to pass with technical amendments 14 – Yeas 1 – Nays.

SB 1291 – Virginia Water Protection Permit (January 19, 2021)

  • Senator T. Montgomery “Monty” Mason sponsored a bill that will establish a water auditing and leak detection layer plan in the Commonwealth.
  • Voted to report bill with technical amendments 8 – Yeas 7 – Nays.

SB 1402 – Trout fishing in stocked water (January 19, 2021)

  • Senator Todd Pillion sponsored a bill that which requires a person to have a season state or county fishing license or a trip fishing license along with a valid special permit in order to partake in trout fishing in stocked water.
  • Voted to report and refer to Finance Committee 12 – Yeas 1 – Nays.

SB 1199 – Conservation easements; construction (January 19, 2021)

  • Senator Chap Petersen sponsored a bill which specifies and reorganizes a previous conservation easement bill to clarify purpose.
  • Voted to report bill with technical amendments 10 – Yeas 0 – Nays.

Bills passed

  • SB 1135 Dangerous dogs; restructures procedure for adjudication, penalty. Clarifies that each of the six nonlegislative citizen members of the Virginia Soil and Water Conservation Board (the Board) who is not an at-large member is to be appointed by the Governor from a list of two qualified nominees submitted for each vacancy by the Board and the Board of Directors of the Virginia Association of Soil and Water Conservation Districts (the Association) in consultation with other groups. The bill also requires each of the six nonlegislative citizen members to be a resident of a different one of the six geographic areas represented in the Association. The bill contains technical amendments. This bill is identical to HB 1837.
  • SB 1164 Advanced recycling; not considered solid waste management, definition.  Defines, for purposes of the Virginia Waste Management Act, “advanced recycling” as a manufacturing process for the conversion of post-use polymers and recovered feedstocks into basic hydrocarbon raw materials and other materials. The bill also defines “gasification,” “post-use polymer,” and other terms related to advanced recycling.
  • SB 1188 Virginia Agriculture Food Assistance Program and Fund; established and created. Requires the Commissioner of Agriculture and Consumer Services (the Commissioner) to establish the Virginia Agriculture Food Assistance Program (VAFA Program) for Virginia farmers and food producers to donate, sell, or otherwise provide agriculture products to charitable food assistance organizations. The bill also creates the Virginia Agriculture Food Assistance Fund to disburse moneys to such charitable food assistance organizations to reimburse farmers or food producers for any costs associated with harvesting, processing, packaging, or transporting agriculture products donated to such charitable food assistance organizations. The bill authorizes the Commissioner to adopt guidelines and regulations to carry out the VAFA Program.
  • SB 1193 Dairy Producer Margin Coverage Premium Assistance Program; established. Directs the Commissioner of Agriculture and Consumer Services to establish and administer the Dairy Producer Margin Coverage Premium Assistance Program (the Program). The bill provides that any dairy farmer that has a resource management plan or nutrient management plan and participates in the federal margin coverage program for dairy producers at the tier I level as contained in the federal Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 is eligible to participate in the Program. Under the bill, each year a Program participant will receive a refund of its annual premium payment paid into the federal program. Such reimbursement shall be provided on a first-come, first-served basis and shall be subject to availability of funds expressly appropriated for the purposes set forth in the chapter. The Commissioner shall submit an annual report no later than December 1 of each year to the House Committee on Agriculture, Chesapeake and Natural Resources and the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Conservation and Natural Resources assessing the effectiveness of the Program. This bill is identical to HB 1750.
  • SB 1194 Produce safety; removes the sunset date.  Removes the sunset date for Chapter 51.1 (§ 3.2-5146 et seq.) of Title 3.2 on produce safety, which was enacted in 2017 and set to expire upon the effective date of the repeal of certain federal regulations or on July 1, 2022, whichever occurs sooner. The chapter will still expire upon the effective date of the repeal of such federal regulations that require the provisions of Chapter 51.1 to exist.
  • SB 1196 Teachers and other licensed school board employees; cultural competency. Requires teacher, principal, and division superintendent evaluations to include an evaluation of cultural competency. The bill requires every person seeking initial licensure or renewal of a license from the Board of Education (i) to complete instruction or training in cultural competency and (ii) with an endorsement in history and social sciences to complete instruction in African American history, as prescribed by the Board. The bill also requires each school board to adopt and implement policies that require each teacher and any other school board employee holding a license issued by the Board to complete cultural competency training, in accordance with guidance issued by the Board, at least every two years. This bill is identical to HB 1904.
  • SB 1199 Conservation easements; construction. Provides that an easement held pursuant to the Virginia Conservation Easement Act or the Open-Space Land Act be construed in favor of achieving the conservation purposes for which it was created. This bill is identical to HB 1760.
  • SB 1210 Permit fee schedules; DEQ to revise current schedule for nonhazardous solid waste mgmt. facilities. Directs the Director of the Department of Environmental Quality to convene working groups for the purpose of developing annual fee schedules for nonhazardous solid waste management facilities and annual maintenance fees for certain water withdrawal permits to replace the current annual fee schedules.
  • SB 1220 State facilities; admission of certain aliens. Repeals the requirements that (i) the Commissioner of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services determine the nationality of each person admitted to a state facility and, if the person is an alien, notify the United States immigration officer in charge of the district in which the state facility is located and (ii) upon request of the United States immigration officer in charge of the district in which a state facility to which a person who is an alien is admitted is located or the judge or special justice who certified or ordered the admission of such alien, the clerk of the court furnish a certified copy of records pertaining to the case of the admitted alien.
  • SB 1258 Solar projects; erosion and sediment control. Requires any locality that does not operate a regulated MS4 and for which the Department did not administer a VSMP as of July 1, 2020, to notify the Department of Environmental Quality (the Department) if it decides to have the Department provide the locality with (i) review of a required erosion and sediment control plan and (ii) a recommendation on the plan’s compliance with the requirements of the Erosion and Sediment Control Law and the State Water Control Board’s regulations, for any solar project and its associated infrastructure with a rated electrical generation capacity exceeding five megawatts. The bill provides certain procedural steps for the Department and VESCP authority for a locality to take in reviewing the plan and making recommendations and decisions. The provisions of the bill are contingent on funding in a general appropriation act.
  • SB 1265 Natural gas pipelines; stop work orders. Authorizes the Department of Environmental Quality to conduct inspections of the land-disturbing activities related to construction of any natural gas transmission pipeline equal to or greater than 24 inches inside diameter. Current law authorizes such inspections only if such inside diameter is greater than 36 inches. The bill also specifies certain instances that may give rise to such inspection and authorizes the Department to issue a stop work instruction for every work area in Virginia in the event that substantial adverse impacts or likely adverse impacts are found on a repeated, frequent, and widespread basis.
  • SB 1274 Wildlife corridors; various agencies to consider and incorporate. Directs various agencies to consider and incorporate, where applicable, wildlife corridors and any recommendation of the Wildlife Corridor Action Plan. The bill directs the Department of Wildlife Resources to publish the Plan and subsequent updates on its website and to assist state agencies and political subdivisions, and by request any federal agency, in considering and incorporating, where applicable, wildlife corridors and the recommendations of the Plan when developing any governmental strategic plan, map, or action.
  • SB 1280 Dams; negotiated settlement agreements. Authorizes the Virginia Soil and Water Conservation Board to enter into a negotiated settlement with the owners of certain impounding structures who have allegedly violated or failed, neglected, or refused to obey any permit condition, provision of the Dam Safety Act, or Board regulation or order. The settlement shall require the dam owner to correct deficiencies at the dam structure and to pay civil charges for past alleged violations instead of any appropriate civil penalty that could be imposed. Such civil charges shall be suspended upon compliance with the settlement agreement.
  • SB 1282 Greenhouse gas emissions inventory; regulations. Directs the Department of Environmental Quality to conduct a statewide baseline and projection inventory of all greenhouse gas emissions and to update such inventory every four years. The bill requires that the inventory be published and included in the annual report of the State Air Pollution Control Board. The bill also authorizes the Board to adopt regulations necessary to collect data needed to conduct, update, and maintain the inventory. The bill exempts proprietary information collected by the Department from the mandatory disclosure requirements of the Virginia Freedom of Information Act.
  • SB 1290 ConserveVirginia program; established. Establishes in the Department of Conservation and Recreation a data-driven Geographical Information Systems model to prioritize potential conservation areas across the Commonwealth that would provide quantifiable benefits to the citizens of Virginia, known as ConserveVirginia. Aspects of the program include (i) the synthesis of multiple mapped data inputs, divided into categories, each representing a different overarching conservation value, and periodic revision of such values; (ii) access to the model by the public and all state and federal agencies; and (iii) incorporation of the model into acquisition or grant decisions when appropriate. The bill requires the Virginia Land Conservation Foundation to report on the success of the program and incorporate the program into needs assessments for expenditures from the Virginia Land Conservation Fund.
  • SB 1291 Va. Water Protection Permit; withdrawal of surface water or ground water, plans for water auditing. Requires that any application for a permit to withdraw surface water or ground water include a water auditing plan and a leak detection and repair plan that comply with regulations adopted by the State Water Control Board pursuant to the provisions of the bill. The provisions of the bill shall not become effective until 30 days after the adoption by the Board of such regulations.
  • SB 1311 Water quality standards; modification of permits and certifications. Requires an applicant for a natural gas transmission pipeline greater than 36 inches inside diameter to submit in the application a detailed erosion and sediment control plan and stormwater management plan subject to Department of Environmental Quality (the Department) review and approval. After receipt of such application, the bill directs the Department to issue a request for information about how the erosion and sediment control plan and stormwater management plan will address activities in or related to upland areas, and requires the applicant to respond. The bill directs the Department to consider such information in developing a draft certification or denial, and to take certain additional public notice steps.
  • SB 1319 Waste Diversion & Recycling Task Force; Department of Environmental Quality to continue Task Force. Requests the Department of Environmental Quality to continue and expand the scope of the Waste Diversion and Recycling Task Force.
  • SB 1354 Chesapeake Bay; wastewater treatment, Enhanced Nutrient Removal Certainty Program established.  Requires the State Water Control Board to adopt regulations establishing a Phase III Watershed Implementation Plan Enhanced Nutrient Removal Certainty Program (ENRC Program), consisting of a number of total nitrogen and total phosphorous waste load allocation reductions assigned to particular water treatment facilities with schedules for compliance. The bill provides that the ENRC Program shall operate in lieu of certain Chesapeake Bay waste load regulations. The bill directs the Board to modify affected discharge permits to incorporate the provisions of the ENRC Program and requires certain compliance plans due from treatment works beginning February 1, 2023, to address the requirements of the ENRC Program.
  • SB 1374 Carbon Sequestration Task Force; established. Directs the Secretary of Natural Resources, jointly with the Secretary of Agriculture and Consumer Services, to convene a task force for the purpose of studying carbon sequestration in the Commonwealth and submit a report of its findings before the first day of the 2022 Session of the General Assembly. The bill directs the task force to (i) consider possible methods of increasing carbon sequestration within the natural environment through state land and marine resources use policies; agricultural, aquacultural, and silvicultural practices; and other practices to achieve restoration of natural resources and long-term conservation; (ii) recommend short-term and long-term benchmarks for increasing carbon sequestration; (iii) develop a standardized methodology to establish baseline carbon levels and account for increases in carbon sequestration over time; (iv) identify existing carbon markets and considerations relevant to potential participation by the Commonwealth; and (v) identify other potential funding mechanisms to encourage carbon sequestration practices in the Commonwealth.
  • SB 1379 Humane Cosmetics Act; civil penalties. Prohibits a cosmetics manufacturer from: (i) conducting or contracting for cosmetic animal testing that occurs in the Commonwealth on or after January 1, 2022; (ii) manufacturing or importing for profit into the Commonwealth any cosmetic or ingredient thereof, if the cosmetics manufacturer knew or reasonably should have known that the cosmetic or any component thereof was developed or manufactured using cosmetic animal testing that was conducted on or after January 1, 2022; or (iii) beginning July 1, 2022, selling or offering for sale within the Commonwealth any cosmetic, if the cosmetics manufacturer knows or reasonably should know that the cosmetic or any component thereof was developed or manufactured using cosmetic animal testing that was conducted on or after January 1, 2022. Violations are subject to a civil penalty of up to $5,000 and an additional $1,000 for each day the violation continues. The bill preempts any local regulation on cosmetic animal testing. This bill is identical to HB 2250.
  • SB 1396 Onsite Sewage Indemnification Fund; use of Fund for grants to certain property owners. Authorizes the State Board of Health to use the Onsite Sewage Indemnification Fund to provide grants and loans to property owners with income at or below 200 percent of the federal poverty guidelines to repair failing onsite sewage systems or install onsite sewage systems on properties that lack adequate sewage disposal. The bill provides that no expenses shall be paid from the Fund to support the program for training and recognition of onsite soil evaluators, or to provide grants or loans to repair failing onsite sewage systems or install onsite sewage systems on properties that lack adequate sewage disposal in lieu of payment to any owner or owners qualified to receive payment from the Fund. The bill also directs the Board to adopt regulations that include consideration of the impacts of climate change on proposed treatment works.
  • SB 1402 Trout fishing in stocked waters; equalizes for residents and nonresidents requirements to fish.  Equalizes for residents and nonresidents requirements to fish in designated stocked trout waters. The bill requires either such person to possess (i) a regular season state or county fishing license or a trip fishing license valid for at least five days and (ii) a trout license or a special lifetime trout fishing license.
  • SB 1404 Stormwater Local Assistance Fund; grants awarded for projects related to Chesapeake Bay. Authorizes grants from the Stormwater Local Assistance Fund awarded for projects related to Chesapeake Bay total maximum daily load (TMDL) requirements to take into account total phosphorus reductions or total nitrogen reductions. The bill authorizes grants awarded for eligible projects in localities with high or above average fiscal stress as reported by the Commission on Local Government to account for more than 50 percent of the costs of a project.
  • SB 1411 Peanuts; extends sunset date of excise tax on all peanuts grown in Virginia. Extends from July 1, 2021, to July 1, 2026, the sunset date of the excise tax on all peanuts grown in Virginia and reduces from $0.30 per 100 pounds to $0.25 per 100 pounds the excise tax rate. The proceeds from this tax are used for promoting the sales and use of Virginia peanuts.
  • SB 1412 Pet shops, dealers, and dog breeders; employees convicted of animal abuse, penalty. Prohibits any person from serving as an owner, director, officer, manager, operator, member of staff, or animal caregiver of a pet shop, dealer, or commercial dog breeder if such person has been convicted of animal cruelty. The bill prohibits pet shops from selling or giving for adoption an animal without first obtaining a signed statement from the purchaser or adopter that such person has never been convicted of animal cruelty. A violation of such requirement is a Class 1 misdemeanor.
  • SB 1417 Animal testing facilities; definitions, adoption of dogs and cats, civil penalty.  Requires any animal testing facility, defined in the bill, that no longer has need for a dog or cat in its possession that does not pose a health or safety risk to the public or itself to offer, for a reasonable period of time prior to euthanasia, such dog or cat for adoption to a releasing agency or through a private placement or in the case of a testing facility operated by an agency or institution of higher education, develop its own adoption program. The bill authorizes an animal testing facility to enter into an agreement with a releasing agency for the implementation of the adoption. Violation is subject to a civil penalty of not more than $5,000 and any court costs and attorney fees.
  • SB 1453 Mines and Mining and Virginia Energy Plan; revision of Titles 45.1 and 67. Creates proposed Title 45.2 (Mines, Minerals, and Energy) as a revision of existing Title 45.1 (Mines and Mining) and existing Title 67 (Virginia Energy Plan). Proposed Title 45.2 consists of 21 chapters divided into five subtitles: Subtitle I (Administration), Subtitle II (Coal Mining), Subtitle III (Mineral Mines), Subtitle IV (Gas and Oil), and Subtitle V (Other Sources of Energy; Energy Policy). The bill organizes the laws in a more logical manner, removes obsolete and duplicative provisions, and improves the structure and clarity of statutes pertaining to the administration of the Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy, underground and surface coal mining, underground and surface mineral mines, the Virginia Gas and Oil Act, energy from wind, solar, geothermal, and nuclear sources, and energy policy. The bill moves the remaining provisions of Title 67 that are not appropriate for inclusion in proposed Title 45.2 into other existing titles of the Code. The bill has a delayed effective date of October 1, 2021, and is a recommendation of the Virginia Code Commission.

Commissions & Boards

Chesapeake Bay Commission

Source: Website

To be a catalyst for the coordination and leadership of State legislative and policy action to restore the Bay watershed. As a formal signatory to every Bay agreement, the Commission serves as the legislative voice in the multi-jurisdictional Chesapeake Bay Program Partnership and as a liaison to the U.S. Congress on policy and budgetary matters related to the restoration of the Bay and its watershed.

Coal and Energy Commission

Source: Webpage

The Coal and Energy Commission exists to study all aspects of coal as an energy resource and endeavor to stimulate, encourage, promote, and assist in the development of renewable and alternative energy resources other than petroleum.

State Water Commission

Source: Webpage

The State Water Commission was established by the Virginia General Assembly to:

  • Study all aspects of water supply and allocation problems in the Commonwealth, whether these problems are of a quantitative or qualitative nature; and
  • Coordinate the legislative recommendations of all other state entities having responsibilities with respect to water supply and allocation issues.

Appalachian Region Interstate Compact Commission

Source: Webpage

To study, develop, and promote a plan for the design, construction, financing, and operation of interstate facilities of strategic interest to the signatory states; 2. To coordinate efforts to establish a common legal framework in all the signatory states to authorize and facilitate design, construction, financing, and operation of such facilities either as publicly operated facilities or through other structures authorized by law; 3. To advocate for federal and other public and private funding to support the establishment of interstate facilities of interest to all signatory states; 4. To make available to such interstate facilities funding and resources that are or may be appropriated and allocated for that purpose; and 5. To do all things necessary or convenient to facilitate and coordinate the economic and workforce development plans and programs of the Commonwealth of Virginia, and the other signatory states, to the extent such plans and programs are not inconsistent with federal law and the laws of the Commonwealth of Virginia or other signatory states.

Chesapeake Bay Restoration Fund Advisory Committee

Source: Webpage

To advise the General Assembly on the expenditure of moneys received in the Chesapeake Bay Restoration Fund

Clean Energy Advisory Board

Source: Website

The Clean Energy Advisory Board (the Board) is established as an advisory board in the executive branch of state government. The purpose of the Board is to establish a pilot program for disbursing loans or rebates for the installation of solar energy infrastructure in low-income and moderate-income households through the “Low-to-Moderate Income Solar Loan and Rebate Fund” (the Fund).

Board of Trustees Land Conservation Foundation

Source: Website

Plastic Waste Prevention Advisory Council

Source: Webpage

Advise the Governor on policy and funding priorities to eliminate plastic waste impacting native species and polluting the Commonwealth’s environment and to contribute to achieving plastics packaging circular economy industry standards.

Potomac River Basin Commission

Source: Website

Abatement of existing pollution and the control of future pollution of interstate streams located within the Potomac Valley Conservancy District.

Rappahannock River Basin Commission

Source: Website

“(T)o provide guidance for the stewardship and enhancement of the water quality and natural resources of the Rappahannock River Basin. The Commission shall be a forum in which local governments and citizens can discuss issues affecting the Basin’s water quality and quantity and other natural resources. Through promoting communication, coordination and education, and suggesting appropriate solutions to identified problems, the Commission shall promote activities by local, state and federal governments, and by individuals, that foster resource stewardship for the environmental and economic health of the Basin.”

Virginia Roanoke River Basin Advisory Committee

Source: Webpage

Assist the Roanoke River Basin Bi-State Commission in fulfilling their duties and carrying out the objectives of the Commission.

Virginia Delegation of the Roanoke River Bi-State Commission

Source: Webpage

Provide guidance, conduct joint meetings and make recommendations regarding the use, stewardship and enhancement of the Roanoke River Basin’s water and other natural resources.

Southern States Energy Board

Source: Website

Provide instruments and framework for the proper employment and conservation of energy and energy related facilities, materials, and products, within the context of a responsible regard for the environment in a cooperative effort to improve the economy of the South.

State Water Commission

Source: Webpage

The State Water Commission was established by the Virginia General Assembly to:

  • Study all aspects of water supply and allocation problems in the Commonwealth, whether these problems are of a quantitative or qualitative nature; and
  • Coordinate the legislative recommendations of all other state entities having responsibilities with respect to water supply and allocation issues.
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Senate Commerce and Labor CommitteeCommerce and Labor Committee (Senate)

Meets on: Monday at 15 Minutes After Adjournment in Senate Room A, Pocahontas Building

Members: Dick Saslaw (Chair) – George Barker – John Bell – Creigh Deeds – Adam Ebbin – John Edwards – Lynwood Lewis – Louise Lucas – Dave Marsden – Monty Mason – Steve Newman – Tommy Norment – Mark Obenshain – Lionell Spruill – Scott Surovell

(12 Democrats and 3 Republicans)

Subcommittees:

  • Energy
  • Health
  • Insurance

 

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Commerce & Labor bills passed by the General Assembly
Virginia Legislative Information System

Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”)

  • SB 1182: Motor vehicle liability insurance; increases coverage amount.
  • SB 1219: Paid family and medical leave; SCC’s Bureau of Insurance to review and make recommendations, report.
  • SB 1223: Virginia Energy Plan; amends Plan to include an analysis of electric vehicle charging infrastructure
  • SB 1225: Broadband services; school boards to appropriate funds for expansion of services for education.
  • SB 1247: Electric generating facility closures; integrated resource plan.
  • SB 1255: SCC; issuance or renewal of insurance licenses or registrations during an emergency.
  • SB 1269: Health insurance; authorization of drug prescribed for the treatment of a mental disorder.
  • SB 1275: Workers’ compensation; presumption of compensability for certain diseases
  • SB 1284: Commonwealth Clean Energy Policy; established.
  • SB 1289: Health insurance; carrier business practices, provider contracts
  • SB 1295: Electric utilities; procurement of certain equipment.
  • SB 1310: Va. Human Rights Act; application of laws applicable to employee safety and payment of wages.
  • SB 1334: Broadband capacity; expands existing pilot program, municipal broadband authorities.
  • SB 1351: Workers’ compensation; claims not barred.
  • SB 1375: Workers’ compensation; presumption of compensability for COVID-19
  • SB 1413: Phase I or Phase II electric utilities; provision of broadband capacity
  • SB 1420: Electric utilities; nonjurisdictional customers, third party power purchase agreements.
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Commerce & Labor 2021 Hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee: 1/18  1/25  2/1  2/15  2/22

Subcommittees:
Energy: 1/27 2/12

Senators also rejected a compromise measure from Senate Majority Leader Dick Saslaw (D-Springfield) last year that would have allowed unions to collect some fees from nonmembers. Just three members of the Senate’s powerful Commerce and Labor committee voted for that proposal.

“If sharing the expenses of writing a union contract can only get three votes, a full repeal of Virginia’s prohibition on union shops does not appear to have the votes to pass the Senate right now,” says Sen. Scott Surovell (D-Fairfax), who supported Saslaw’s compromise.

Carter’s latest repeal attempt may have already encountered an early roadblock. As of Jan. 19, House Speaker Eileen Filler-Corn had not assigned the bill to a committee, prompting speculation from supporters that the Democrat intends to let it die.

Broadband expansion bills advance in Virginia House committee
Tyler Arnold February 11, 2021 (Short)

Senate Bill 1334, sponsored by Sen. John Edwards, D-Roanoke, would extend a current pilot program that allows municipalities and government-owned broadband authorities to participate in expanding broadband to unserved areas of the state. The bill does not have any fiscal impact, according to the fiscal impact statement.

The legislation has already passed the Senate and would be sent to Gov. Ralph Northam for his signature if it passes the House without any amendments. It advanced through the Labor and Commerce Committee with a 22-0 vote.

Another Senate-passed broadband bill advanced in the committee with amendments. Senate Bill 1413 would make permanent a pilot program that allows utility companies to petition the State Corporation Commission to provide broadband capacity to unserved areas of the state. The bill allows companies to recover the costs and revenue generated from providing broadband services. It would also consolidate the SCC’s petition approval process to one hearing.

The bill is now before the Senate Committee on Commerce and Labor. He acknowledges that rounding up enough votes from Republican senators will be tougher.

Brianna Esteves, manager of state policy with Ceres, agrees with Bourne’s assessment. She was pleased when the stronger bill emerged from the House Labor and Commerce Committee last week on a 16-6 bipartisan vote.

“Last year’s version passed in the House, but there was pushback in the Senate,” she said. “This bill shouldn’t be controversial. But we might see the same thing happen again this year. I’m not sure there’s enough interest among legislators to stand up to Dominion Energy.”

The bill is now before the Senate Committee on Commerce and Labor. He acknowledges that rounding up enough votes from Republican senators will be tougher.

Brianna Esteves, manager of state policy with Ceres, agrees with Bourne’s assessment. She was pleased when the stronger bill emerged from the House Labor and Commerce Committee last week on a 16-6 bipartisan vote.

“Last year’s version passed in the House, but there was pushback in the Senate,” she said. “This bill shouldn’t be controversial. But we might see the same thing happen again this year. I’m not sure there’s enough interest among legislators to stand up to Dominion Energy.”

Top News

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Commerce & Labor bills passed by the General Assembly
Virginia Legislative Information System

Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”)

  • SB 1182: Motor vehicle liability insurance; increases coverage amount.
  • SB 1219: Paid family and medical leave; SCC’s Bureau of Insurance to review and make recommendations, report.
  • SB 1223: Virginia Energy Plan; amends Plan to include an analysis of electric vehicle charging infrastructure
  • SB 1225: Broadband services; school boards to appropriate funds for expansion of services for education.
  • SB 1247: Electric generating facility closures; integrated resource plan.
  • SB 1255: SCC; issuance or renewal of insurance licenses or registrations during an emergency.
  • SB 1269: Health insurance; authorization of drug prescribed for the treatment of a mental disorder.
  • SB 1275: Workers’ compensation; presumption of compensability for certain diseases
  • SB 1284: Commonwealth Clean Energy Policy; established.
  • SB 1289: Health insurance; carrier business practices, provider contracts
  • SB 1295: Electric utilities; procurement of certain equipment.
  • SB 1310: Va. Human Rights Act; application of laws applicable to employee safety and payment of wages.
  • SB 1334: Broadband capacity; expands existing pilot program, municipal broadband authorities.
  • SB 1351: Workers’ compensation; claims not barred.
  • SB 1375: Workers’ compensation; presumption of compensability for COVID-19
  • SB 1413: Phase I or Phase II electric utilities; provision of broadband capacity
  • SB 1420: Electric utilities; nonjurisdictional customers, third party power purchase agreements.
i
Commerce & Labor 2021 Hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee: 1/18  1/25  2/1  2/15  2/22

Subcommittees:
Energy: 1/27 2/12

Senators also rejected a compromise measure from Senate Majority Leader Dick Saslaw (D-Springfield) last year that would have allowed unions to collect some fees from nonmembers. Just three members of the Senate’s powerful Commerce and Labor committee voted for that proposal.

“If sharing the expenses of writing a union contract can only get three votes, a full repeal of Virginia’s prohibition on union shops does not appear to have the votes to pass the Senate right now,” says Sen. Scott Surovell (D-Fairfax), who supported Saslaw’s compromise.

Carter’s latest repeal attempt may have already encountered an early roadblock. As of Jan. 19, House Speaker Eileen Filler-Corn had not assigned the bill to a committee, prompting speculation from supporters that the Democrat intends to let it die.

Broadband expansion bills advance in Virginia House committee
Tyler Arnold February 11, 2021 (Short)

Senate Bill 1334, sponsored by Sen. John Edwards, D-Roanoke, would extend a current pilot program that allows municipalities and government-owned broadband authorities to participate in expanding broadband to unserved areas of the state. The bill does not have any fiscal impact, according to the fiscal impact statement.

The legislation has already passed the Senate and would be sent to Gov. Ralph Northam for his signature if it passes the House without any amendments. It advanced through the Labor and Commerce Committee with a 22-0 vote.

Another Senate-passed broadband bill advanced in the committee with amendments. Senate Bill 1413 would make permanent a pilot program that allows utility companies to petition the State Corporation Commission to provide broadband capacity to unserved areas of the state. The bill allows companies to recover the costs and revenue generated from providing broadband services. It would also consolidate the SCC’s petition approval process to one hearing.

The bill is now before the Senate Committee on Commerce and Labor. He acknowledges that rounding up enough votes from Republican senators will be tougher.

Brianna Esteves, manager of state policy with Ceres, agrees with Bourne’s assessment. She was pleased when the stronger bill emerged from the House Labor and Commerce Committee last week on a 16-6 bipartisan vote.

“Last year’s version passed in the House, but there was pushback in the Senate,” she said. “This bill shouldn’t be controversial. But we might see the same thing happen again this year. I’m not sure there’s enough interest among legislators to stand up to Dominion Energy.”

The bill is now before the Senate Committee on Commerce and Labor. He acknowledges that rounding up enough votes from Republican senators will be tougher.

Brianna Esteves, manager of state policy with Ceres, agrees with Bourne’s assessment. She was pleased when the stronger bill emerged from the House Labor and Commerce Committee last week on a 16-6 bipartisan vote.

“Last year’s version passed in the House, but there was pushback in the Senate,” she said. “This bill shouldn’t be controversial. But we might see the same thing happen again this year. I’m not sure there’s enough interest among legislators to stand up to Dominion Energy.”

Summary

Meets on: Monday at 15 Minutes After Adjournment in Senate Room A, Pocahontas Building

Members: Dick Saslaw (Chair) – George Barker – John Bell – Creigh Deeds – Adam Ebbin – John Edwards – Lynwood Lewis – Louise Lucas – Dave Marsden – Monty Mason – Steve Newman – Tommy Norment – Mark Obenshain – Lionell Spruill – Scott Surovell

(12 Democrats and 3 Republicans)

Subcommittees:

  • Energy
  • Health
  • Insurance

 

About

From Senate Rules: “A Committee on Commerce and Labor, 16 Senators, to consider all matters concerning banking; commerce; commercial law; corporations; economic development; industry; insurance; labor; manufacturing; partnerships; public utilities, except matters relating to transportation; tourism; workmen’s compensation and unemployment matters.”.

Web

VA Legislative Information Systems (LIS)

Subcommittees

Energy

Meets on: Monday at upon adjournment of full committee in Senate Room A, Pocahontas Building

Members:  Lionell Spruill (Chair), Louise LucasDave Marsden,   Steve NewmanTommy Norment

Health Insurance

Meets on: the call of the Chair in TBD

Members:  George Barker (Chair),  John Edwards,   Mark Obenshain

 Bills 

Bills in committee 

HB 1754: Prohibits an employer or anyone else from discharging or taking action against an employee if they believe that the employee has filed a claim or intends to take certain actions under the Virginia Workers’ Compensation Act.

HB 1775: Adds the State Corporation Commission to the list of agencies that are exempt from paying fees for remote access to local land records.

HB 1807: Updates provisions of the Code of Virginia related to insolvency procedures for health maintenance organizations (HMOs) that were inconsistent with the method to address insolvencies provided for members of the Virginia Life, Accident, and Sickness Insurance Guaranty Association.

HB 1829: Provides that provisions requiring health insurers and other carriers to establish reasonable protocols and procedures for reimbursing a health professional for services provided while such professional’s credentialing application is pending also apply to certain health maintenance organizations and to corporations operating dental or optometric plans.

HB 1881: Provides that, for purposes of wage requirements for the enterprise zone job creation grant program, the minimum wage shall be higher than the state minimum wage or the federal minimum wage. It also reduces the percentage of the minimum wage that grant eligible jobs must meet. The bill has a delayed effective date of January 1, 2022.

HB 1892: Permits an insurer that receives approval of an insurance policy form or endorsement from the State Corporation Commission to use the form as soon as it is approved rather than waiting 30 days after the filing date to use it as is current law.

HB 1896: Removes the prohibition on the provision of coverage for abortions in any qualified health insurance plan that is sold or offered for sale through a health benefits exchange established or operating in Virginia.

HB 1923: Expands an existing pilot program under which Dominion Energy and Appalachian Power are authorized to provide or make available broadband capacity to Internet service providers in areas of the Commonwealth that are unserved by broadband to include municipal Internet service providers. The current program is restricted to nongovernmental Internet service providers.

HB 1942: Provides for continuing education requirements for public adjusters and that the insurance continuing education board (the Board), appointed by the State Corporation Commission, is responsible for establishing and monitoring standards for such requirements. Currently, the Commission is given such responsibility and the Board is responsible for the continuing education requirements for other insurance agents and agencies. The bill maintains the current requirement that a public adjuster complete a minimum of 24 hours of approved credits, including three hours of ethics, on a biennial basis.

HB 1964: Amends the provisions governing the supervisory merger or transfer of assets of insolvent credit unions to include state credit unions that are financially unstable. The measure removes the requirement that the Commission find that an emergency exists to expedite mergers or sales of assets between credit unions.

HB 1994: Expands the definition of small agricultural generator to include any business operating a small agricultural generating facility that has been granted a manufacturer license as a distillery, limited distillery, brewery, limited brewery, winery, or farm winery. Under current law, small agricultural generators include only those businesses operating a small agricultural generating facility as part of an agricultural business. 

HB 2034: Provides that for pilot programs under which an owner or operator of a renewable energy generation facility sells electricity to an eligible customer-generator through a third party power purchase agreement, both jurisdictional and nonjurisdictional customers may participate on a first-come, first-serve basis.

HB 2121:Aligns provisions governing the filings by nonstock corporations, limited liability companies, business trusts, and partnerships related to cancellations, abandonments, name restrictions and registered agent resignations, and entity conversions to the provisions governing such filings for stock corporations.

SB 1247:Requires each owner of a large carbon-emitting power plant to provide a facility retirement study every 18 months. The bill requires that whenever a generation asset owner makes the decision to close a plant, such owner must provide notice to relevant localities and state agencies within 14 days of making that decision. Currently in Energy Sub-committee.

SB 1284: Establishes the Commonwealth Clean Energy Policy, replacing the Commonwealth Energy Policy. The bill sets out the energy policy and objectives of the Commonwealth Clean Energy Policy, which include: (i) the Commonwealth recognizes that effectively addressing climate change and enhancing resilience will advance the health, welfare, and safety of the residents of the Commonwealth and that addressing climate change requires reducing greenhouse gas emissions across the Commonwealth’s economy sufficient to reach net-zero emission by 2045 in all sectors, including the electric power, transportation, industrial, agricultural, building, and infrastructure sectors; (ii) the Commonwealth recognizes the need to promote environmental justice and ensure that it is carried out throughout the Commonwealth and the need to address and prevent energy inequities in historically economically disadvantaged communities; and (iii) the Commonwealth must continue to prioritize economic competiveness and workforce development in an equitable manner. Currently in Energy Sub-committee.

SB 1289: Requires that each provider contract include provisions (i) requiring providers to provide health care services to enrollees in a manner similar to and within the same time availability in which the provider provides health care services to any other individual and (ii) prohibiting a provider from discriminating against any enrollee as a result of the enrollee’s enrollment in a health plan or on the basis of the enrollee’s race, color, creed, national origin, ancestry, religion, sex, marital status, age, disability, payment source, state of health, need for health care services, status as a litigant except in cases where the enrollee claims medical malpractice by the provider, status as a Medicare enrollee, status as a medical assistance recipient, sexual orientation, or gender identity, or on any other basis prohibited by law. 

SB 1292: Requires the State Corporation Commission to direct that 100 percent of the amount of a utility’s earnings above a certain threshold be credited to customers’ bills. Under current law, the Commission is required to direct that 70 percent of such over earnings be credited to customers’ bills. The provisions of the bill apply to the first triennial review of Dominion Energy Virginia conducted after January 1, 2021. Currently in Energy Sub-committee.

SB 1295: Requires a utility, in the construction of certain offshore wind, onshore wind, solar, and energy storage facilities, to procure, subject to a competitive process, equipment from a Virginia-based or United States-based manufacturer using materials or product components made in Virginia or the United States, if available. Currently in Energy Sub-committee.

SB 1341: Provides that a licensed insurer may issue a policy of group accident and sickness insurance to an association of real estate salespersons (association), which association shall be deemed the policyholder, and that such association health plan is not considered to be insurance and is not subject to the existing requirements for insurance if certain requirements are met.

SB 1419: Requires that for contracts requiring the design or construction of a road, highway, bridge, or similar transportation improvement, a public body wishing to enter into a project labor agreement shall first determine by written finding that participation in such project labor agreement advances the public interest, based on objective criteria established by the public body by regulation, ordinance, or resolution that may include cost, efficiency, quality, safety, timeliness, maintenance of a skilled labor force, labor stability, or advancing minority-owned or women-owned business participation in the project.

SB 1420: Provides that for pilot programs under which an owner or operator of a renewable energy generation facility sells electricity to an eligible customer-generator through a third-party power purchase agreement, both jurisdictional and non-jurisdictional customers may participate on a first-come, first-serve basis. Currently in Energy Sub-committee.

Bills reported out 

SB 1159: Requires employers with a sick leave program to allow an employee to use his sick leave for the care of an immediate family member.  Rereferred to Finance & Appropriations Committee. 

SB 1182:  Increases the motor vehicle liability insurance coverage amounts from $25,000 to $50,000 in cases of bodily injury to or death of one person, from $50,000 to $100,000 in cases of bodily injury to or death of more than one person in any one accident, and from $20,000 to $40,000 for damage to property of others as a result of any one accident. The bill applies to policies issued or renewed on or after January 1, 2022. Passed Senate ( 27 Yes, 11 No, & 1 Abstain)

SB 1195:  Provides that a motor vehicle is underinsured when the total amount of bodily injury and property damage coverage applicable to the operation or use of the motor vehicle and available for payment for such bodily injury or property damage, including all bonds or deposits of money or securities, is insufficient to fully compensate any person injured as a result of the operation or use of the vehicle. Passed Senate ( 31 Yes, 5 No, & 1 Abstain)

SB 1202: Provides that if an insurance company denies, refuses, or fails to pay its insured, or refuses a reasonable settlement demand within the policy’s coverage limits, for a claim for uninsured or underinsured motorist benefits within a reasonable time after being presented with a demand for such benefits and it is subsequently found that such denial, refusal, or failure was not in good faith, then the insurance company is liable to the insured for the full amount of the judgment and reasonable attorney fees, expenses, and interest.Passed Senate (29 Yes to 9 No)

SB 1219: Directs the State Corporation Commission’s Bureau of Insurance (the Bureau) to review and make recommendations, including any necessary statutory and regulatory changes, to authorize the State Corporation Commission to approve the sale of individual and group paid family leave plans in Virginia. Passed Senate (24 Yes to 13 No)

SB 1223: Amends the Virginia Energy Plan to include an analysis of electric vehicle charging infrastructure and other infrastructure needed to support the 2045 net-zero carbon target in the transportation sector. Passed Senate (22 Yes & 15 No)

SB 1225: Authorizes school boards to appropriate funds for the purposes of promoting, facilitating, and encouraging the expansion and operation of broadband services for educational purposes. Senate: Constitutional reading dispensed (35-Y 0-N)

SB 1255: Authorizes the State Corporation Commission to temporarily suspend, authorize extensions of time, or waive requirements for the issuance or renewal of licenses or registrations related to insurance in the event of an emergency. Passed Senate (38 Yes to 0 No)

SB 1269: Requires that any provider contract between a carrier and a participating health care provider with prescriptive authority, or its contracting agent, provide that no prior authorization is required for any drug prescribed for the treatment of a mental disorder listed in the most recent edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders published by the American Psychiatric Association if the prescription (i) is a covered benefit, (ii) does not exceed the U.S. Food and Drug Administration-labeled dosages, and (iii) has been continuously issued for no fewer than three months. Passed Senate (37 Yes & 0 No)

SB 1275: Adds salaried or volunteer emergency medical services personnel to the list of persons to whom, after five years of service, the occupational disease presumption for death caused by hypertension or heart disease applies. Rereferred to Finance & Appropriations Committee. 

SB 1276: Removes the prohibition on the provision of coverage for abortions in any qualified health insurance plan that is sold or offered for sale through a health benefits exchange established or operating in Virginia. Passed Senate (20 Yes & 17 No)

SB 1310: Provides that individuals who are engaged in providing domestic service are not excluded from employee protection laws, laws regarding the payment of wages, and the Virginia Workers’ Compensation Act.  Rereferred to Finance & Appropriations Committee. 

SB 1323: Provides that in a proceeding involving allegations of worker misclassification an individual or business is not considered an employee with respect to a hiring party if the person qualifies as an independent contractor relative to the hiring party under the common law right-of control test as established by the Internal Revenue Service Revenue Ruling 87-41, by an applicable determination of the Internal Revenue Service, or if (i) the individual or business signs a written contract with the hiring party stating that the individual or business is self-employed or is being engaged as an independent contractor and containing certain acknowledgments, (ii) the individual or business has the right to control the manner and means by which the final result of the work is to be accomplished, and (iii) four or more additional criteria provided for in the bill are satisfied. Referred to Judiciary Committee.

SB 1334: Expands the existing broadband pilot program to allow for the participation of municipalities and government-owned broadband authorities in order to provide broadband service to unserved areas of the Commonwealth authorities. Passed Senate (36 Yes & 1 No).

SB 1342: Establishes a presumption that COVID-19 causing the death or disability of firefighters, emergency medical services personnel, law-enforcement officers, and correctional officers is an occupational disease compensable under the Workers’ Compensation Act. Referred to Finance & Appropriations Committee. 

SB 1351: Provides that an order issued by the Workers’ Compensation Commission awarding or denying benefits shall not bar by res judicata any claim by an employee or cause a waiver, abandonment, or dismissal of any claim by an employee if the order does not expressly adjudicate such claim. Passed Senate (37 Yes & 0 No)

SB 1375:  Establishes a presumption that COVID-19 causing the death or disability of firefighters and emergency medical services personnel is an occupational disease compensable under the Workers’ Compensation Act. The provisions of the bill will be effective retroactive to March 1, 2020. Rereferred to Finance & Appropriations Committee. 

SB 1380: Authorizes electric utilities to partner with school divisions to implement projects designed to encourage the proliferation of school buses that are fueled in whole or in part by electricity, along with associated charging and other infrastructure, for the purpose of transporting students and that may also serve as electric grid stabilization or peak-shaving resources. Rereferred to Finance & Appropriations Committee. 

SB 1413: Makes permanent the pilot program under which a Phase I or Phase II electric utility is permitted to petition the State Corporation Commission to provide broadband capacity to unserved areas of the Commonwealth. Passed Senate (28 Yes & 7 No)

Bills Passed

  • SB 1182: Motor vehicle liability insurance; increases coverage amount.
    Increases the motor vehicle liability insurance coverage amounts from $25,000 to $30,000 in cases of bodily injury to or death of one person and from $50,000 to $60,000 in cases of bodily injury to or death of two or more persons from any one accident, for policies effective between January 1, 2022 and January 1, 2025. For policies effective after January 1, 2025, the bill increases the motor vehicle liability insurance coverage amounts to $50,000 in cases of bodily injury to or death of one person, $100,000 in cases of bodily injury to or death of two or more persons from any one accident, and from $20,000 to $25,000 for injury to or destruction of property of others as a result of any one accident. The bill requires that self-insured operators of taxicabs maintain protection against uninsured and underinsured drivers with limits of $25,000, $50,000, and $20,000, respectively, with respect to each motor vehicle.
  • SB 1219: Paid family and medical leave; SCC’s Bureau of Insurance to review and make recommendations, report.
    Directs the State Corporation Commission’s Bureau of Insurance (the Bureau) to review and make policy recommendations to meet the goals identified in the “Paid Family and Medical Leave Study” published by the Offices of the Secretary of Commerce and Trade and the Chief Workforce Development Advisor in September 2020 as part of a statewide paid family and medical leave program to be administered by the Commonwealth. The bill requires the Bureau to convene a stakeholder group to participate in the process, which is required to include representatives from the insurance industry and the business community, labor organizations, advocates for paid family leave, and other interested parties. The bill requires the Bureau to report its findings and recommendations to the Senate Committees on Commerce and Labor and Finance and Appropriations and the House Committees on Labor and Commerce and Appropriations by November 30, 2021.
  • SB 1223: Virginia Energy Plan; amends Plan to include an analysis of electric vehicle charging infrastructure
    Amends the Virginia Energy Plan to include an analysis of electric vehicle charging infrastructure and other infrastructure needed to support the 2045 net-zero carbon target in the transportation sector.
  • SB 1225: Broadband services; school boards to appropriate funds for expansion of services for education.
    Authorizes school boards to appropriate funds for the purposes of promoting, facilitating, and encouraging the expansion and operation of broadband services for educational purposes. The bill authorizes school boards to partner with private broadband service providers to promote, implement, and subsidize broadband for educational purposes to the households of students who would qualify for (i) a child nutrition program or (ii) any other program recognized or adopted by the local school board as a measuring standard to identify at-risk students.
  • SB 1247: Electric generating facility closures; integrated resource plan.
    Requires each owner of a large carbon-emitting power plant to provide notice to relevant localities and state agencies about the decision to close the plant within 30 days of making such decision The bill requires localities in which such facilities are located, and planning district commissions in such localities, to conduct public hearings regarding the impending closure within six months of receipt of such notice. The bill requires the Division of Energy to maintain a public website listing the facilities subject to the requirements of the bill and their anticipated closure dates. As part of an integrated resource plan, the bill requires each utility to submit a facility retirement study for its carbon-emitting facilities and disclose the study to relevant localities and state agencies. This bill is identical to HB 1834.
  • SB 1255: SCC; issuance or renewal of insurance licenses or registrations during an emergency.
    Authorizes the State Corporation Commission to temporarily suspend, authorize extensions of time for, or waive requirements for the issuance or renewal of licenses or registrations related to insurance in the event of an emergency.
  • SB 1269: Health insurance; authorization of drug prescribed for the treatment of a mental disorder.
    Requires that any provider contract between a carrier and a participating health care provider with prescriptive authority, or its contracting agent, contain provisions that require, when a carrier has previously approved prior authorization for any drug prescribed for the treatment of a mental disorder listed in the most recent edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders published by the American Psychiatric Association, no additional prior authorization can be required if (i) the drug is a covered benefit; (ii) the prescription does not exceed the U.S. Food and Drug Administration-labeled dosages; (iii) the prescription has been continuously issued for no fewer than three months; and (iv) the prescriber performs an annual review of the patient to evaluate the drug’s continued efficacy, changes in the patient’s health status, and potential contraindications. The bill provides that this requirement does not prohibit a carrier from requiring prior authorization for any drug that is not listed on its prescription drug formulary at the time the initial prescription is issued. The bill also requires that such provider contracts contain provisions requiring a carrier to honor a prior authorization issued by the carrier for a drug regardless if the drug is removed from the carrier’s prescription drug formulary after the initial prescription for that drug is issued. Under the bill, provisions related to provider contracts and prior authorization shall apply to the state insurance health plan. This bill is identical to HB 2008.
  • SB 1275: Workers’ compensation; presumption of compensability for certain diseases
    Provides that the occupational disease presumption for death caused by hypertension or heart disease will apply for salaried or volunteer emergency medical services personnel who have at least five years of service and are operating in a locality that has legally adopted a resolution declaring that it will provide one or more of such presumptions. The provisions of the bill do not apply to any individual who was diagnosed with hypertension or heart disease before July 1, 2021. This bill is identical to HB 1818.
  • SB 1284: Commonwealth Clean Energy Policy; established.
    Establishes the Commonwealth Clean Energy Policy, replacing the Commonwealth Energy Policy. The bill sets out the energy policy and objectives of the Commonwealth Clean Energy Policy, which include: (i) the Commonwealth recognizes that effectively addressing climate change and enhancing resilience will advance the health, welfare, and safety of the residents of the Commonwealth and that addressing climate change requires reducing greenhouse gas emissions across the Commonwealth’s economy sufficient to reach net-zero emission by 2045 in all sectors, including the electric power, transportation, industrial, agricultural, building, and infrastructure sectors; (ii) the Commonwealth recognizes the need to promote environmental justice and ensure that it is carried out throughout the Commonwealth and the need to address and prevent energy inequities in historically economically disadvantaged communities; and (iii) the Commonwealth must continue to prioritize economic competiveness and workforce development in an equitable manner.
  • SB 1289: Health insurance; carrier business practices, provider contracts
    Requires that each provider contract include a provision prohibiting a provider from discriminating against any enrollee solely due to the enrollee’s status as a litigant in pending litigation or a potential litigant due to being involved in a motor vehicle accident. The bill provides that the State Corporation Commission, if it has cause to believe that a provider has engaged in a pattern of such discrimination, may submit information to the Board of Medicine or the Commissioner of Health for action.
  • SB 1295: Electric utilities; procurement of certain equipment.
    Requires a utility, in the construction of certain onshore wind, solar, and energy storage facilities, to procure, subject to a competitive process, equipment from a Virginia-based or United States-based manufacturer using materials or product components made in Virginia or the United States, if reasonably available and competitively priced. Additionally, the bill requires a utility, in the construction of certain offshore wind projects, to develop and submit a plan for review to the State Corporation Commission that includes considerations for the procurement of equipment from a Virginia-based or United States-based manufacturer using materials or product components made in Virginia or the United States, if reasonably available and competitively priced.
  • SB 1310: Va. Human Rights Act; application of laws applicable to employee safety and payment of wages.
    Provides that individuals who are engaged in providing domestic service are not excluded from employee protection laws and laws regarding the payment of wages. The measure also provides that the prohibitions on nondiscrimination in employment of the Virginia Human Rights Act apply to employers that employ one or more domestic workers
  • SB 1334: Broadband capacity; expands existing pilot program, municipal broadband authorities.
    Expands an existing pilot program under which Dominion Energy and Appalachian Power are authorized to provide or make available broadband capacity to Internet service providers in areas of the Commonwealth that are unserved by broadband to include municipal Internet service providers. The current program is restricted to nongovernmental Internet service providers. This bill is identical to HB 1923.
  • SB 1351: Workers’ compensation; claims not barred.
    Provides that an order issued by the Workers’ Compensation Commission awarding or denying benefits shall not bar by res judicata any claim by an employee or cause a waiver, abandonment, or dismissal of any claim by an employee if the order does not expressly adjudicate such claim.
  • SB 1375: Workers’ compensation; presumption of compensability for COVID-19
     Establishes a presumption that COVID-19 causing the death or disability of firefighters, emergency medical services personnel, law-enforcement officers, correctional officers, and regional jail officers is an occupational disease compensable under the Workers’ Compensation Act. The bill provides that such presumption applies to any death or disability occurring on or after September 1, 2020, caused by infection from the COVID-19 virus, provided that for any such death or disability that occurred on or after September 1, 2020, and prior to December 31, 2021, the claimant received a diagnosis of COVID-19 from a licensed physician, after either a presumptive positive test or a laboratory confirmed test for COVID-19, and presented with signs and symptoms of COVID-19 that required medical treatment. This bill incorporates SB 1342. This bill is identical to HB 2207.
  • SB 1413: Phase I or Phase II electric utilities; provision of broadband capacity
     Makes permanent the pilot program under which a Phase I or Phase II electric utility is permitted to petition the State Corporation Commission to provide broadband capacity to unserved areas of the Commonwealth. The bill expands the program to allow for the participation of municipalities and government-owned broadband authorities. The bill provides that investor-owned electric utilities may recover costs of and revenue generated from providing broadband capacity that serves as an electric grid transformation project in areas unserved by broadband, as defined in the bill. The bill also consolidates the State Corporation Commission petition approval process into one hearing. This bill is identical to HB 2304.
  • SB 1420: Electric utilities; nonjurisdictional customers, third party power purchase agreements.
    Provides that for pilot programs under which an owner or operator of a renewable energy generation facility sells electricity to an eligible customer-generator through a third party power purchase agreement, both jurisdictional and nonjurisdictional customers may participate on a first-come, first-serve basis. This bill is identical to HB 2034.

Commissions & Boards

Commission on Unemployment Compensation

Source: Webpage

The Commission is to:

  • Evaluate the impact of existing statutes and proposed legislation on unemployment compensation and the Unemployment Trust Fund;
  • Assess the Commonwealth’s unemployment compensation program and examine ways to enhance effectiveness;
  • Monitor the current status and long-term projections for the Unemployment Trust Fund; and
  • Report annually its findings and recommendations for the General Assembly and the Governor.

Virginia Disability Commission

Source: Webpage

The purpose of the Commission is to identify and recommend legislative priorities and policies for adoption or examination by the General Assembly in order to provide ongoing support in developing and reviewing services and funding related to Virginians with physical and sensory disabilities.

Appalachian Region Interstate Compact Commission

Source: Webpage

To study, develop, and promote a plan for the design, construction, financing, and operation of interstate facilities of strategic interest to the signatory states; 2. To coordinate efforts to establish a common legal framework in all the signatory states to authorize and facilitate design, construction, financing, and operation of such facilities either as publicly operated facilities or through other structures authorized by law; 3. To advocate for federal and other public and private funding to support the establishment of interstate facilities of interest to all signatory states; 4. To make available to such interstate facilities funding and resources that are or may be appropriated and allocated for that purpose; and 5. To do all things necessary or convenient to facilitate and coordinate the economic and workforce development plans and programs of the Commonwealth of Virginia, and the other signatory states, to the extent such plans and programs are not inconsistent with federal law and the laws of the Commonwealth of Virginia or other signatory states.

Broadband Advisory Council

Source: Webpage

The purpose of the Council shall be to advise the Governor on policy and funding priorities to expedite deployment and reduce the cost of broadband access in the Commonwealth

Committee on Business Development and Marketing

Source: Webpage

The Committee shall advise the Board on all matters relating to business development and marketing and shall make such recommendations as it may deem desirable.

Virginia Commission on Coal and Energy

Source: Webpage

To study all aspects of coal as an energy resource and endeavor to stimulate, encourage, promote, and assist in the development of renewable and alternative energy resources other than petroleum.

Virginia Economic Development Partnership Authority

Source: Website

To encourage, stimulate and support the development and expansion of the economy of the Commonwealth through economic development.

Joint Advisory Board of Economists

Source: Webpage

To review with respect to economic assumptions and technical econometric methodology, the estimates of anticipated general, transportation, and other nongeneral fund revenues as submitted each year by the Governor

Commission on Electric Utility Regulation

Source: Webpage

The purpose of the Commission is to monitor the State Corporation Commission’s implementation of the Virginia Electric Utility Regulation Act (§ 56-576 et seq.)

Commission on Employee Retirement Security and Pension Reform

Source: Webpage

Creates the Commission on Employee Retirement Security and Pension Reform (the Commission) in the legislative branch to study and make recommendations relating to the financial soundness of retirement plans covering state and local government employees; the suitability of retirement plans offered or maintained for current state and local government employees and the attributes of retirement plans that will be suitable for future employees; the impact on state and local governments of the anticipated retirement of experienced employees between 2016 and 2026 and strategies for replacing such employees; and the elements of compensation and benefits packages that are essential to attracting and retaining a highly productive state and local government workforce.

Employment Service Organization Steering Committee

Source: Webpage

The Employment Service Organization Steering Committee (the Committee) is established as an advisory board, within the meaning of § 2.2-2100, in the executive branch of state government. The purpose of the Committee shall be to report to and advise the Commissioner on policy, funding, and the allocation of funds to employment services organizations for Long-Term Employment Support Services and Extended Employment Services pursuant to § 51.5-169.1.

Virginia Growth and Opportunity Board

Source: Website

The GO Board is responsible for:

  • Promoting collaborative regional economic and workforce development opportunities;
  • Certifying the GO Virginia Regions and Regional Councils;
  • Distributing Virginia Growth and Opportunity Fund monies;
  • Reviewing applications for monies from the Virginia Growth and Opportunity Fund and rewarding those funds to qualifying projects;
  • Collecting and disseminating information regarding local, state, and national best practices related to collaborative regional economic and workforce development activities;
  • Organizing advisory committees around industry clusters and other areas of opportunity to inform the work of the regions; and
  • Advising and reporting to the Governor and General Assembly

Committee on International Trade

Source: Webpage

The Committee shall advise the Board on all matters relating to international trade and trade promotion and shall make such recommendations as it may deem desirable.

Manufacturing Development Commission

Source: Webpage

To assess needs and formulate legislative and regulatory remedies to ensure the future of the manufacturing sector.
Expiration Date: If the Commission is not funded by a separate appropriation in the Appropriation Act for any year, this chapter shall expire on July 1 of the fiscal year that the Commission fails to receive such funding.

Public Private Partnership Advisory Commission

Source: Webpage

The purpose of the Commission shall be to advise responsible public entities that are agencies or institutions of the Commonwealth on proposals received pursuant to the Public-Private Education Facilities and Infrastructure Act of 2002 (§ 56-575.1 et seq.).

Public Private Partnership Oversight Committee

Source: Webpage

Review and approve the terms of contracts under § 58.1-202.2 relating to the measurement of the revenue attributable to the technology program.

Center for Rural Virginia Board of Trustees

Source: Webpage

Sustain economic growth in the rural areas of the Commonwealth.

Small Business Commission

Source: Webpage

To study, report and make recommendations on issues of concern to small businesses in the Commonwealth.

Small Business Environmental Compliance Advisory Panel

Source: Webpage

Render advisory opinions concerning the effectiveness of the Small Business Stationary Source Technical and Environmental Compliance Assistance Program, difficulties encountered and the degree and severity of enforcement.

Southwest Virginia Energy Research and Development Authority

Source: Webpage

Creates the Southwest Virginia Energy Research and Development Authority (the Authority) to promote opportunities for energy development in Southwest Virginia, to create jobs and economic activity in Southwest Virginia consistent with the Virginia Energy Plan, and to position Southwest Virginia and the Commonwealth as a leader in energy workforce and energy technology research and development. The Authority will be composed of 11 nonlegislative members, of whom four will be appointed by the Governor, four will be appointed by the Speaker of the House, and three will be appointed by the Senate Committee on Rules. The Authority is charged with, among other tasks, (i) leveraging the strength in energy research and workforce development of Virginia’s public and private institutions of higher education; (ii) supporting the development of pump storage hydropower in Southwest Virginia and energy storage generally; (iii) promoting the development of renewable energy generation facilities on brownfield sites, including abandoned mine sites; (iv) promoting energy workforce development; and (v) assisting energy technology research and development by promoting the development of a Southwest Virginia Energy Park.

Virginia Tobacco Region Revitalization Commission

Source: Website

The Tobacco Region Revitalization Commission is a 28-member body created by the 1999 General Assembly. Its mission is the promotion of economic growth and development in formerly tobacco-dependent communities, using proceeds of the national tobacco settlement.

Commission on Unemployment Compensation

Source: Webpage

Annually monitor and evaluate Virginia’s unemployment compensation system relative to the economic health of the Commonwealth.

Virginia Israel Advisory Board

Source: Website

Advise the Governor on ways to improve economic and cultural links between the Commonwealth and the State of Israel, with a focus on the areas of commerce and trade, art and education, and general government.

Virginia Minority Business Commission

Source: Webpage

Evaluates the impact of existing statutes and proposed legislation on minority businesses, assesses the Commonwealth’s minority business assistance programs and examines ways to enhance their effectiveness, provides minority business owners and advocates with a forum to address their concerns, develops strategies and recommendations to promote the growth and competitiveness of Virginia minority-owned businesses, and collaborates with the Department of Small Business and Supplier Diversity and other appropriate entities to facilitate the Commonwealth’s work and mission.

Virginia Board of Workforce Development

Source: Website

Assist the Governor in meeting workforce training needs in the Commonwealth.

X
Education and Health CommitteeEducation and Health Committee

Meets on: Meets on Thursday at 8:00 a.m. in Senate Room A, Pocahontas Building

Members:  Louise Lucas (Chair) – George Barker – John Cosgrove – Siobhan Dunnavant – John Edwards – Ghazala Hashmi – Janet Howell – Lynwood Lewis – Mamie Locke – Steve Newman – Mark Peake – Chap Petersen – Dick Saslaw – Dave Suetterlein

(9 Democrats and 6 Republicans)

Subcommittees:

  • Certificate of Public Need
  • Health
  • Health Professions
  • Higher Education
  • Public Education

 

i

Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”)

  • SB 1121 Birth certificates; amending certificate, review of request. Birth certificates; amendments.
  • SB 1132 Public schools; severe weather conditions and other emergency situations.
  • SB 1147 Nurse Loan Repayment Program; certified nurse aide.
  • SB 1154 Behavioral Health and Developmental Services, Commissioner of; reports to designated protection.
  • SB 1169 Student driver safety; driver education program shall include dangers of speeding.
  • SB 1175 Removes the Brunswick County school board from the list of approved member salaries for appointed school boards.
  • SB 1178 Genetic counseling; repeals conscience clause. Genetic counseling; conscience clause.
  • SB 1187 Physical therapy; extends time allowed for a therapist to evaluate and treat patients. Department of Health Professions; practice of physical therapy.
  • SB 1189 Authorizes Virginia to become a signatory to the Occupational Therapy Interjurisdictional Licensure Compact.
  • SB 1190 Health Standards of Learning; advanced directive education for high school students.
  • SB 1205 Career fatigue and wellness in certain health care providers; programs to address, civil immunity.
  • SB 1220 State facilities; admission of certain aliens.
  • SB 1221 Loudoun County; operation of local health department.
  • SB 1227 Hormonal contraceptives; payment of medical assistance for 12-month supply.
  • SB 1257 SOQ; school board to provide at least three specialized student support positions.
  • SB 1276 Essential health benefits; abortion coverage.
  • SB 1288 Special education; Department of and the Board of Education to develop new policies and procedures.
  • SB 1302 Crisis Call Center Fund; created, collection of 988 charges.
  • SB 1303 Local school divisions; availability of virtual and in-person learning to all students.
  • SB 1304 Community services boards; discharge planning.
  • SB 1307 School-based health services; Bd. of MAS to amend state plan for services to provide for payment.
  • SB 1313 Children’s Services Act; funds expended special education programs.
  • SB 1320 Licensed certified midwives; clarifies definition, licensure, etc.
  • SB 1322 Public schools; seizure management and action plans, biennial training, effective date.
  • SB 1333 Pharmaceutical processors; permits processors to produce & distribute cannabis products.
  • SB 1338 Telemedicine services; remote patient monitoring services.
  • SB 1356 Hospitals, nursing homes, etc.; visits by clergy.
  • SB 1357 Standards of Learning; reading & mathematics assessments for students in grades three through eight
  • SB 1387 Students; eligibility for in-state tuition.
  • SB 1405 Get Skilled, Get a Job, Give Back (G3) Fund and Program; established.
  • SB 1408 Health Care, Joint Commission on; repeals sunset provision.
  • SB 1421 Brain injury; clarifies definition.
  • SB 1436 Eligible Health Care Provider Reserve Directory; established.
  • SB 1439 Students; guidelines on excused student absences, civic engagement.
  • SB 1464 Drug Control Act; adds certain chemicals to Schedule I of Act.
  • SB 1465 Illegal gambling; skill games, definitions, enforcement by localities and Attorney General.
i
Education and Health 2021 Committee Hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee: 1/14 1/21 1/28 2/11 2/18 

Subcommittee on Health: 1/19 2/16 

Subcommittee on Health Professionals: 1/15 2/2 2/12 

Subcommittee on Higher Education: 1/18 1/28 2/3 2/15 

Subcommittee on Public Education: 1/15 2/2 2/12 

Makya Little was helping her fourth-grade daughter review for the Virginia Studies SOL, a standardized test on state history, when she found herself taken aback by one of the questions on the study guide.

“She gets to this one question that says ‘What’s the status of the early African?’” said Little, who lives in Prince William County. The correct answer, according to the class materials, was “unknown. They were either servants or enslaved.”

“I got really, really upset,” Little said. While historians widely agree that the first Africans to arrive at the Jamestown settlement were enslaved, there’s been contentious discussion on the topic — some of the state’s own study materials also state that it’s “unknown” whether they arrived as slaves or indentured servants. The school division didn’t provide any of that context, and Little said multiple thoughts flashed through her head. The information was “misleading,” she added, and seemed designed to “soften how early Americans treated Black and Indigenous people” (another prompt on the study guide stated that native people and English settlers had a “trade relationship”).

In late September, when Virginia health officials launched a dashboard that detailed outbreaks in K-12 schools across the state, it was applauded as a long-needed step toward more transparency — and a relief for parents hesitant over the prospect of sending their children back to the classroom.

Six months later, the data on reopening has gained even more importance amid a state and nationwide push to return students to the classroom. But there are limits on what it can and can’t tell officials, parents and others looking for answers on the relative risks of in-person school.

In early February, Gov. Ralph Northam directed local divisions to begin offering in-person instruction by March 15. Three weeks later, the Virginia General Assembly passed legislation — with bipartisan support — that mandates a return to the classroom by July 1.

As a result, only three of the state’s 132 local school divisions were operating fully remotely as of March 22, according to data from the Virginia Department of Education. Thirty-eight are fully in-person — defined by the agency as providing at least four days of in-person instruction for all students.

Northam signs bill funding Va. community-college education costs
WTOP, Rick Massimo March 29, 2021 (Short)

Low-income students in Virginia will soon be getting financial help with all the costs of getting an education.

Gov. Ralph Northam on Monday signed into law the “Get Skilled, Get a Job, Give Back” program, which will provide full tuition for community college for low-income students in certain majors, as well as incidental expenses such as food and transportation.

The bill, which passed the legislature overwhelmingly last month, budgets $36 million a year over the next two years.

The bill covers education that leads to in-demand jobs in fields such as technology, skilled labor and health care. Officials gathered at Northern Virginia Community College for the signing Monday said the bill would open doors to people who were considering higher education.

“I am so incredibly proud of this initiative,” said House Speaker Eileen Filler-Corn. “This has been something that we’ve been working on for a number of years.” She said there was a lot of bipartisan support for the bill even before COVID-19, but with a lot of lower-skill jobs disappearing because of the pandemic, “It’s more important now than ever.”

A few months into the COVID-19 pandemic, Nichole Wardlaw opened her own midwifery practice in Chesapeake.

A certified nurse-midwife, or CNM, Wardlaw was taking advantage of an emergency order signed by Gov. Ralph Northam, which allowed certified-nurse midwives and nurse practitioners to treat patients without an agreement with a licensed physician — something that’s typically required in Virginia.

But she was also trying to fill a need in her community. Wardlaw said she’s now the only Black certified nurse midwife in the Hampton Roads region to open an independent practice, spurred by concerns she heard from expecting mothers throughout the early months of the pandemic.

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Two Virginia bills that would have allowed a parent or guardian to refuse a COVID-19 vaccine for their child citing religious practices will not advance.

The Senate Education and Health Committee killed the two bills Thursday morning.

When Virginia senators passed a bill requiring local school divisions to provide in-person instruction by the summer, some anticipated the legislation would face an uphill battle in the House.

Nearly a month later, though, the same legislation is now on the verge of passing both chambers after several rounds of revisions — and mounting pressure to return children to school buildings.

Just a few days after the Senate vote, Gov. Ralph Northam directed Virginia’s 132 local divisions to begin offering in-person classes by March 15, saying that months of remote learning was “taking a toll on our children and our families.” Northam’s announcement followed a pledge from President Joe Biden to reopen schools within his first 100 days of office, and new guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on safely reopening schools and mitigating the spread of COVID-19 in buildings.

Top News

i

Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”)

  • SB 1121 Birth certificates; amending certificate, review of request. Birth certificates; amendments.
  • SB 1132 Public schools; severe weather conditions and other emergency situations.
  • SB 1147 Nurse Loan Repayment Program; certified nurse aide.
  • SB 1154 Behavioral Health and Developmental Services, Commissioner of; reports to designated protection.
  • SB 1169 Student driver safety; driver education program shall include dangers of speeding.
  • SB 1175 Removes the Brunswick County school board from the list of approved member salaries for appointed school boards.
  • SB 1178 Genetic counseling; repeals conscience clause. Genetic counseling; conscience clause.
  • SB 1187 Physical therapy; extends time allowed for a therapist to evaluate and treat patients. Department of Health Professions; practice of physical therapy.
  • SB 1189 Authorizes Virginia to become a signatory to the Occupational Therapy Interjurisdictional Licensure Compact.
  • SB 1190 Health Standards of Learning; advanced directive education for high school students.
  • SB 1205 Career fatigue and wellness in certain health care providers; programs to address, civil immunity.
  • SB 1220 State facilities; admission of certain aliens.
  • SB 1221 Loudoun County; operation of local health department.
  • SB 1227 Hormonal contraceptives; payment of medical assistance for 12-month supply.
  • SB 1257 SOQ; school board to provide at least three specialized student support positions.
  • SB 1276 Essential health benefits; abortion coverage.
  • SB 1288 Special education; Department of and the Board of Education to develop new policies and procedures.
  • SB 1302 Crisis Call Center Fund; created, collection of 988 charges.
  • SB 1303 Local school divisions; availability of virtual and in-person learning to all students.
  • SB 1304 Community services boards; discharge planning.
  • SB 1307 School-based health services; Bd. of MAS to amend state plan for services to provide for payment.
  • SB 1313 Children’s Services Act; funds expended special education programs.
  • SB 1320 Licensed certified midwives; clarifies definition, licensure, etc.
  • SB 1322 Public schools; seizure management and action plans, biennial training, effective date.
  • SB 1333 Pharmaceutical processors; permits processors to produce & distribute cannabis products.
  • SB 1338 Telemedicine services; remote patient monitoring services.
  • SB 1356 Hospitals, nursing homes, etc.; visits by clergy.
  • SB 1357 Standards of Learning; reading & mathematics assessments for students in grades three through eight
  • SB 1387 Students; eligibility for in-state tuition.
  • SB 1405 Get Skilled, Get a Job, Give Back (G3) Fund and Program; established.
  • SB 1408 Health Care, Joint Commission on; repeals sunset provision.
  • SB 1421 Brain injury; clarifies definition.
  • SB 1436 Eligible Health Care Provider Reserve Directory; established.
  • SB 1439 Students; guidelines on excused student absences, civic engagement.
  • SB 1464 Drug Control Act; adds certain chemicals to Schedule I of Act.
  • SB 1465 Illegal gambling; skill games, definitions, enforcement by localities and Attorney General.
i
Education and Health 2021 Committee Hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee: 1/14 1/21 1/28 2/11 2/18 

Subcommittee on Health: 1/19 2/16 

Subcommittee on Health Professionals: 1/15 2/2 2/12 

Subcommittee on Higher Education: 1/18 1/28 2/3 2/15 

Subcommittee on Public Education: 1/15 2/2 2/12 

Makya Little was helping her fourth-grade daughter review for the Virginia Studies SOL, a standardized test on state history, when she found herself taken aback by one of the questions on the study guide.

“She gets to this one question that says ‘What’s the status of the early African?’” said Little, who lives in Prince William County. The correct answer, according to the class materials, was “unknown. They were either servants or enslaved.”

“I got really, really upset,” Little said. While historians widely agree that the first Africans to arrive at the Jamestown settlement were enslaved, there’s been contentious discussion on the topic — some of the state’s own study materials also state that it’s “unknown” whether they arrived as slaves or indentured servants. The school division didn’t provide any of that context, and Little said multiple thoughts flashed through her head. The information was “misleading,” she added, and seemed designed to “soften how early Americans treated Black and Indigenous people” (another prompt on the study guide stated that native people and English settlers had a “trade relationship”).

In late September, when Virginia health officials launched a dashboard that detailed outbreaks in K-12 schools across the state, it was applauded as a long-needed step toward more transparency — and a relief for parents hesitant over the prospect of sending their children back to the classroom.

Six months later, the data on reopening has gained even more importance amid a state and nationwide push to return students to the classroom. But there are limits on what it can and can’t tell officials, parents and others looking for answers on the relative risks of in-person school.

In early February, Gov. Ralph Northam directed local divisions to begin offering in-person instruction by March 15. Three weeks later, the Virginia General Assembly passed legislation — with bipartisan support — that mandates a return to the classroom by July 1.

As a result, only three of the state’s 132 local school divisions were operating fully remotely as of March 22, according to data from the Virginia Department of Education. Thirty-eight are fully in-person — defined by the agency as providing at least four days of in-person instruction for all students.

Northam signs bill funding Va. community-college education costs
WTOP, Rick Massimo March 29, 2021 (Short)

Low-income students in Virginia will soon be getting financial help with all the costs of getting an education.

Gov. Ralph Northam on Monday signed into law the “Get Skilled, Get a Job, Give Back” program, which will provide full tuition for community college for low-income students in certain majors, as well as incidental expenses such as food and transportation.

The bill, which passed the legislature overwhelmingly last month, budgets $36 million a year over the next two years.

The bill covers education that leads to in-demand jobs in fields such as technology, skilled labor and health care. Officials gathered at Northern Virginia Community College for the signing Monday said the bill would open doors to people who were considering higher education.

“I am so incredibly proud of this initiative,” said House Speaker Eileen Filler-Corn. “This has been something that we’ve been working on for a number of years.” She said there was a lot of bipartisan support for the bill even before COVID-19, but with a lot of lower-skill jobs disappearing because of the pandemic, “It’s more important now than ever.”

A few months into the COVID-19 pandemic, Nichole Wardlaw opened her own midwifery practice in Chesapeake.

A certified nurse-midwife, or CNM, Wardlaw was taking advantage of an emergency order signed by Gov. Ralph Northam, which allowed certified-nurse midwives and nurse practitioners to treat patients without an agreement with a licensed physician — something that’s typically required in Virginia.

But she was also trying to fill a need in her community. Wardlaw said she’s now the only Black certified nurse midwife in the Hampton Roads region to open an independent practice, spurred by concerns she heard from expecting mothers throughout the early months of the pandemic.

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Two Virginia bills that would have allowed a parent or guardian to refuse a COVID-19 vaccine for their child citing religious practices will not advance.

The Senate Education and Health Committee killed the two bills Thursday morning.

When Virginia senators passed a bill requiring local school divisions to provide in-person instruction by the summer, some anticipated the legislation would face an uphill battle in the House.

Nearly a month later, though, the same legislation is now on the verge of passing both chambers after several rounds of revisions — and mounting pressure to return children to school buildings.

Just a few days after the Senate vote, Gov. Ralph Northam directed Virginia’s 132 local divisions to begin offering in-person classes by March 15, saying that months of remote learning was “taking a toll on our children and our families.” Northam’s announcement followed a pledge from President Joe Biden to reopen schools within his first 100 days of office, and new guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on safely reopening schools and mitigating the spread of COVID-19 in buildings.

Summary

Meets on: Meets on Thursday at 8:00 a.m. in Senate Room A, Pocahontas Building

Members:  Louise Lucas (Chair) – George Barker – John Cosgrove – Siobhan Dunnavant – John Edwards – Ghazala Hashmi – Janet Howell – Lynwood Lewis – Mamie Locke – Steve Newman – Mark Peake – Chap Petersen – Dick Saslaw – Dave Suetterlein

(9 Democrats and 6 Republicans)

Subcommittees:

  • Certificate of Public Need
  • Health
  • Health Professions
  • Higher Education
  • Public Education

 

About

From Senate Rules: “A Committee on Education and Health, 15 Senators, to consider matters concerning education; human reproduction; life support; persons under disability; public buildings; public health; mental health; mental retardation and health professions”.

Web

VA Legislative Information Systems (LIS)

Subcommittees

Certificate of Public Need

Meets on: The call of the Chair

MembersLouise Lucas (Chair),  George Barker,  John CosgroveSiobhan Dunnavant,   Steve Newman,   Chap PetersenDick Saslaw

Health

Meets on: Tuesday at 4:00 p.m. in Senate Subcommittee Room #2, 5th Floor, Pocahontas Building

MembersLynwood Lewis (Chair),  George Barker,    Siobhan Dunnavant,  Dick SaslawDave Suetterlein 

Health Professions

Meets on:  Friday at 8:30 a.m. in Subcommittee Room #2, 5th Floor, Pocahontas Building

MembersGeorge Barker (Chair),   Siobhan DunnavantJohn Edwards,   Lynwood Lewis,   Steve Newman,  Dick SaslawDave Suetterlein 

 

George Barker (Chair), Siobhan Dunnavant, John Edwards, Lynwood Lewis, Steve Newman, Dick Saslaw, Dave Suetterlein

Higher Education

Meets on: Monday at 30 minutes after adjournment in Subcommittee Room #2, 5th Floor, Pocahontas Building

Members:   Mamie Locke,ise Lucas (Chair),  Ben ChafinJohn CosgroveGhazala Hashmi,  Chap Petersen

Public Education

Meets on: Monday at 30 minutes after adjournment in Subcommittee Room #2, 5th Floor, Pocahontas Building

Members:   Ghazala Hashmi (Chair),  Siobhan Dunnavant,  Janet Howell,   Mamie Locke,  Mark Peake

Bills

Bills in Education and Health Subcommittee

SB 1114
To expand CSA funding to public schools. Bills bypassed temporarily.
SB 1313
To expand CSA funding to licensed place and transition services. It could be combined with SB 1114 before being presented before the full committee.
SB 1169
Requires high school students to present a drivers license when purchasing a parking pass. Bill is reported.
SB 1303
To give an in-person option for public schools. The vote tied 2-2 but was reported to full committee.
SB 1322
Allowing schools to receive personal action plans for students that are prone to seizures. It would only apply to staff that is regularly around the student. Bill will go to full committee.
SB 1317
Passed for the day.

Bills Reported Out

HB 2333 COVID-19; administration of vaccine. Facilitates the emergency administration of the COVID-19 vaccine.

SB 1102 Personal care aides; DMAS shall establish an orientation program for certain aides. Establishes an orientation for personal care workers. It was referred to senate finance.

SB 1106 Public School Assistance Fund and Program; created. Establishes a roof repair and replace fund for public schools. It would require state and local funding, with some private donations. It was referred to senate finance.

SB 1121 Birth certificates; an amendment of a certificate shall be evaluated by the State Registrar. Provides that, in cases regarding amendments to birth certificates not already set out in the Code of Virginia, an amendment to a birth certificate shall be evaluated by the State Registrar through an administrative process pursuant to regulations as may be adopted by the State Board of Health.

SB 1132 Public schools; severe weather conditions and other emergency situations. Provides that when severe weather conditions or other emergency situations have resulted in the closing of any school in a school division for in-person instruction, the school division may declare an unscheduled remote learning day whereby the school provides instruction and student services that are consistent with guidelines established by the Department of Education.

SB 1133 Children’s Services Act; eligibility for state pool of funds, pilot program.Children’s Services Act; eligibility for state pool of funds; pilot program related to educational placement transition for certain students with disabilities.

1147 Nurse Loan Repayment Program; certified nurse aide.Expands eligibility for the Nurse Loan Repayment Program to include certified nurse aides who meet criteria determined by the State Board of Health.

SB 1154 Behavioral Health and Developmental Services, Commissioner of; reports to designated protection. Requires the Commissioner of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services (the Commissioner) to add written reports of the facts of alleged serious incidents, deaths, abuse, or neglect of individuals receiving services in programs operated or licensed by the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services.

SB 1169 High school student parking passes; valid driver’s license or driver privilege card required. Requires each public high school to require any student who applies to obtain a pass to park a vehicle on school property to provide evidence that the student possesses a valid driver’s license or driver privilege card.

SB 1175 Brunswick County school board; appointed school board salaries. Removes the Brunswick County school board from the list of approved member salaries for appointed school boards.

SB 1176 Barrier crimes; amends current requirements for DBHDS to provide, etc. Amends the current barrier crimes requirements for the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services.

SB 1178 Genetic counseling; repeals conscience clause. Repeals the conscience clause for genetic counselors who forgo participating in counseling that conflicts with their deeply held moral or religious beliefs.

SB 1187 Physical therapy; extends time allowed for a therapist to evaluate and treat patients. Extends from 30 days to 60 days the time allowed for a physical therapist who has completed a doctor of physical therapy program approved by the Commission on Accreditation of Physical Therapy Education or who has obtained a certificate of authorization to evaluate and treat patients after an initial evaluation without a referral under certain circumstances.

SB 1189 Occupational therapists; licensure. Authorizes Virginia to become a signatory to the Occupational Therapy Interjurisdictional Licensure Compact. The Compact permits eligible licensed occupational therapists and occupational therapy assistants to practice in Compact member states.

SB 1190 Health Standards of Learning; advanced directive education for high school students. Directs the Board of Education to include advanced directive education in its curriculum framework for the Health Standards of Learning for high school students.

SB 1191 School nurses; excludes positions from certain requirements, school board to employ in each school. Excludes school nurse positions from requirements for student support positions and instead requires each local school board to employ at least one full-time equivalent school nurse position in each elementary school, middle school, and high school in the local school division.

SB 1196 Teachers and other licensed school board employees; cultural competency. The bill requires teacher, principal, and division superintendent evaluations to include an evaluation of cultural competency.

SB 1205 Career fatigue and wellness in certain health care providers; programs to address, civil immunity. Provides support to medical professionals/providers that are licensed, through counseling. Bill was reported to full committee.

SB 1220 State facilities; admission of certain aliens. Repeals the requirements that (i) the Commissioner of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services determine the nationality of each person admitted to a state facility.

SB 1221 Loudoun County; operation of local health department. Allows Loudoun County to enter into a contract with the Department of Health for the local administration of local health services.

SB 1225 Broadband services; school boards to appropriate funds for expansion of services for education. Authorizes school boards to appropriate funds for the purposes of promoting, facilitating, and encouraging the expansion and operation of broadband services for educational purposes.

SB 1227 Hormonal contraceptives; payment of medical assistance for 12-month supply. Directs the Board of Medical Assistance Services to include in the state plan for medical assistance a provision for the payment of medical assistance for the dispensing or furnishing of up to a 12-month supply of hormonal contraceptives at one time for Medicaid and Family Access to Medical Insurance Security (FAMIS) enrollees.

SB 1235 Health, Department of; certain communication prohibited. Prohibits any person employed by or who has entered into a contract to provide services on behalf of the Department of Health or a local department of health from initiating communication regarding the following matters with a minor on behalf of the Department or local department of health without the consent of the minor’s parent or guardian or person serving in loco parentis.

SB 1237 Emergency and quarantine orders, certain; additional procedural requirements. Provides that any person who is affected by an order of quarantine may file an appeal in the circuit court for the city or county in which he resides or is located or the circuit court for the jurisdiction or jurisdictions for any affected area; currently, only a person who is subject to an order of quarantine may appeal the order.

SB 1257 SOQ; school board to provide at least three specialized student support positions.

SB 1276 Essential health benefits; abortion coverage. Removes the prohibition on the provision of coverage for abortions in any qualified health insurance plan that is sold or offered for sale through a health benefits exchange established or operating in Virginia.

SB 1288 Special education; Department of and the Board of Education to develop new policies and procedures. Requires the Department of Education and the Board of Education to develop new policies and procedures and effect numerous modifications to existing policies and procedures to improve the administration and oversight of special education in the Commonwealth.

SB 1302 Crisis Call Center Fund; created, consistency with federal guidelines. Provides that the crisis call center, which under current law is administered by the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services (the Department), shall be designated as the 9-8-8 Crisis Hotline Center for purposes of participating in the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.

SB 1303 Local school divisions; availability of virtual and in-person learning to all students. Give the option to a parent or guardian.

SB 1304 Community services boards; discharge planning. Reduces from within 30 days to within 72 hours of an individual’s identification as ready for discharge the time by which a community services board must document its disagreement with the determination that an individual is ready for discharge from a state hospital or training center.

SB 1307 School-based health services; Bd. of MAS to amend state plan for services to provide for payment. Directs the Board of Medical Assistance Services to amend the state plan for medical assistance services to provide for payment of medical assistance services delivered to Medicaid-eligible students when such services qualify for reimbursement by the Virginia Medicaid program.

SB 1313 Children’s Services Act; funds expended special education programs.Requires that funds expended for private special education services under the Children’s Services Act only be expended on educational programs that are licensed by the Board of Education or an equivalent out-of-state licensing agency.

SB 1316 Child care providers; background checks, portability. Exempts prospective employees and volunteers of certain child care providers from statutory background check requirements where the individual completed a background check within the previous five years.

SB 1317 Local school boards; open enrollment policy required. Requires all local school boards to establish and implement policies to provide for the open enrollment to any school of any student who is eligible to receive free or reduced lunch.

SB 1320 Licensed certified midwives; clarifies definition, licensure, etc. Defines “practice of licensed certified midwifery” and directs the Boards of Medicine and Nursing to establish criteria for the licensure and renewal of a license as a certified midwife.

SB 1322 Public schools; seizure management and action plans, biennial training, effective date. Provides for the submission and utilization of seizure management and action plans for students with a diagnosed seizure disorder.

SB 1333 Pharmaceutical processors; permits processors to produce & distribute cannabis products. Permits pharmaceutical processors to produce and distribute cannabis products other than cannabis oil.

SB 1338 Telemedicine services; remote patient monitoring services. Requires the Board of Medical Assistance Services to include in the state plan for medical assistance services a provision for the payment of medical assistance for remote patient monitoring services provided via telemedicine.

SB 1356 Hospitals, nursing homes, etc.; visits by clergy. Requires the Board of Health to include in regulations governing hospitals, nursing homes, certified nursing facilities, and hospices and the Board of Social Services to include in regulations governing visits from a rabbi, priest, minister, or clergy of any religious denomination or sect.

SB 1357 Through-year growth assessment system; Board of Education shall establish. Requires the Board of Education to establish a through-year growth assessment system for use during the 2021–2022 and 2022–2023 school years for students in grades three through eight.

SB 1362 Employers; reporting outbreaks of COVID-19, effective clause. Requires that, upon determination that a worksite cluster of COVID-19 has occurred at a workplace with 50 or more employees, the Department of Health (the Department) shall make a report available to the public on a website maintained by the Department.

SB 1387 Students; eligibility for in-state tuition. Provides that students who meet the criteria to be deemed eligible for in-state tuition regardless of their citizenship or immigration status shall be afforded the same educational benefits, including financial assistance programs administered by the State.

SB 1401 Standards of Learning; reduces total number & type of required assessments to minimum requirements. Reduces the total number and type of required Standards of Learning assessments to the minimum requirements established by the federal Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, as amended.

SB 1405 Get Skilled, Get a Job, Give Back (G3) Fund and Program; established. Establishes the Get Skilled, Get a Job, Give Back (G3) Fund and requires the Virginia Community College System to establish the G3 Program for the purpose of providing financial assistance from the Fund to certain low-income and middle-income Virginia students who are enrolled in an educational program.

SB 1421 Brain injury; clarifies definition.

SB 1427 Early Psychosis Intervention and Coordinated Specialty Care Program Advisory Board; established. Establishes the Early Psychosis Intervention and Coordinated Specialty Care Program Advisory Board for the purpose of assisting the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services in expanding the provision of high-quality, evidence-based early psychosis and mood disorder detection and intervention services.

SB 1436 Eligible Health Care Provider Reserve Directory; established. Directs the Department of Health to establish an Eligible Health Care Provider Reserve Directory (the Directory) to collect information regarding eligible health care providers in the Commonwealth who are qualified and who may be available to assist in the response to a public health emergency.

SB 1439 Students; guidelines on excused student absences, civic engagement. Requires, subject to guidelines established by the Department of Education, each local school board to permit at least one school day-long excused absence per school year for any middle school or high school student in the local school division who is absent from school to engage in a civic event.

SB 1445 COVID-19; facilitates vaccine administration.

SB 1446 Medicine and other healing arts; practice, provision of litigation assistance. Requires practitioners of medicine and other healing arts to provide litigation assistance to treated patients and their attorneys.

SB 1464 Drug Control Act; adds certain chemicals to Schedule I of Act.

Bills Passed

SB 1121 Birth certificates; amending certificate, review of request. Birth certificates; amendments. Provides that every request for an amendment to a birth certificate shall be reviewed to determine whether the requested amendment can be made administratively or if a judicial order is required for the amendment. The bill also requires the Department of Health to make information about the process by which amendments to a birth certificate may be requested and are reviewed available on its website. Such information shall include a standard form for requests for amendments to a birth certificate.

SB 1132 Public schools; severe weather conditions and other emergency situations. Provides that when severe weather conditions or other emergency situations have resulted in the closing of any school in a school division for in-person instruction, the school division may declare an unscheduled remote learning day whereby the school provides instruction and student services, consistent with guidelines established by the Department of Education to ensure the equitable provision of such services, without a reduction in the amount paid by the Commonwealth from the Basic School Aid Fund. The bill prohibits any school division from claiming more than 10 unscheduled remote learning days in a school year unless the Superintendent of Public Instruction grants an extension. This bill is identical to HB 1790.

SB 1147 Nurse Loan Repayment Program; certified nurse aide.  Expands eligibility for the Nurse Loan Repayment Program to include certified nurse aides who meet criteria determined by the State Board of Health. Under current law, only licensed practical nurses and registered nurses are eligible for the Nurse Loan Repayment Program.

SB 1154 Behavioral Health and Developmental Services, Commissioner of; reports to designated protection. Requires the Commissioner of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services (the Commissioner) to add written reports of the facts of alleged serious incidents, deaths, abuse, or neglect of individuals receiving services in programs operated or licensed by the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services (the Department) to the list of reports the Commissioner must provide to the Director of the Commonwealth’s designated protection and advocacy system. Currently, the Commissioner is required to provide reports of critical injuries involving, or deaths of individuals receiving, services in facilities and reports of serious injuries to or deaths of individuals receiving services in programs operated or licensed by the Department to the Director of the Commonwealth’s designated protection and advocacy system. This bill is identical to HB 1808.

SB 1169 Student driver safety; driver education program shall include dangers of speeding. Requires (i) driver education programs to include instruction on the dangers of distracted driving and speeding and (ii) a student to submit a standard application form developed by the Department of Education by which the student provides evidence that he possesses a valid driver’s license or driver privilege card before being issued a pass to park a vehicle on high school property. This bill is identical to HB 1918.

SB 1175 Brunswick County school board; appointed school board salaries.  Removes the Brunswick County school board from the list of approved member salaries for appointed school boards. The Brunswick County school board is currently an elected school board. This bill is identical to HB 1798.

SB 1178 Genetic counseling; repeals conscience clause. Repeals the conscience clause for genetic counselors who forgo participating in counseling that conflicts with their deeply held moral or religious beliefs, provided that they inform the patient and offer to direct the patient to the online directory of licensed genetic counselors maintained by the Board of Medicine. The law being repealed also prohibits the licensing of any genetic counselor from being contingent upon participating in such counseling.

SB 1187 Physical therapy; extends time allowed for a therapist to evaluate and treat patients. Department of Health Professions; practice of physical therapy. Extends from 30 days to 60 days the time allowed for a physical therapist who has completed a doctor of physical therapy program approved by the Commission on Accreditation of Physical Therapy Education or who has obtained a certificate of authorization to evaluate and treat patients after an initial evaluation without a referral under certain circumstances. The bill also provides that after discharging a patient a physical therapist shall not perform an initial evaluation of a patient without a referral if the physical therapist has performed an initial evaluation of the patient for the same condition within the immediately preceding 60 days.

SB 1189 Occupational therapists; licensure. Licensure of occupational therapists; Occupational Therapy Interjurisdictional Licensure Compact. Authorizes Virginia to become a signatory to the Occupational Therapy Interjurisdictional Licensure Compact. The Compact permits eligible licensed occupational therapists and occupational therapy assistants to practice in Compact member states, provided that they are licensed in at least one member state. The bill has a delayed effective date of January 1, 2022, and directs the Board of Medicine to adopt emergency regulations to implement the provisions of the bill. The Compact takes effect when it is enacted by a tenth member state.

SB 1190 Health Standards of Learning; advanced directive education for high school students. Board of Education; Health Standards of Learning; advanced directive education. Directs the Board of Education to include advanced directive education in its curriculum framework for the Health Standards of Learning for high school students.

SB 1190 Health Standards of Learning; advanced directive education for high school students. Board of Education; Health Standards of Learning; advanced directive education. Directs the Board of Education to include advanced directive education in its curriculum framework for the Health Standards of Learning for high school students.

SB 1205 Career fatigue and wellness in certain health care providers; programs to address, civil immunity. Programs to address career fatigue and wellness in certain health care providers; civil immunity; emergency. Expands civil immunity for health care professionals serving as members of or consultants to entities that function primarily to review, evaluate, or make recommendations related to health care services to include health care professionals serving as members of or consultants to entities that function primarily to address issues related to career fatigue and wellness in health care professionals licensed, registered, or certified by the Boards of Medicine, Nursing, or Pharmacy, or in students enrolled in a school of medicine, osteopathic medicine, nursing, or pharmacy located in the Commonwealth. The bill contains an emergency clause and is identical to HB 1913.

SB 1220 State facilities; admission of certain aliens. State facilities; admission of certain aliens. Repeals the requirements that (i) the Commissioner of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services determine the nationality of each person admitted to a state facility and, if the person is an alien, notify the United States immigration officer in charge of the district in which the state facility is located and (ii) upon request of the United States immigration officer in charge of the district in which a state facility to which a person who is an alien is admitted is located or the judge or special justice who certified or ordered the admission of such alien, the clerk of the court furnish a certified copy of records pertaining to the case of the admitted alien.

SB 1221 Loudoun County; operation of local health department. Operation of the Loudoun County local health department. Allows Loudoun County to enter into a contract with the Department of Health for the local administration of local health services. Currently, the local department of health is operated as a joint venture between the state and local governments.

SB 1227 Hormonal contraceptives; payment of medical assistance for 12-month supply. State plan for medical assistance; payment of medical assistance; 12-month supply of hormonal contraceptives. Directs the Board of Medical Assistance Services to include in the state plan for medical assistance a provision for the payment of medical assistance for the dispensing or furnishing of up to a 12-month supply of hormonal contraceptives at one time for Medicaid and Family Access to Medical Insurance Security (FAMIS) enrollees. The bill prohibits the Department of Medical Assistance Services from imposing any utilization controls or other forms of medical management limiting the supply of hormonal contraceptives that may be dispensed or furnished to an amount less than a 12-month supply. The bill provides that the bill shall not be construed to (i) require a provider to prescribe, dispense, or furnish a 12-month supply of self-administered hormonal contraceptives at one time or (ii) exclude coverage for hormonal contraceptives as prescribed by a prescriber, acting within his scope of practice, for reasons other than contraceptive purposes.

SB 1257 SOQ; school board to provide at least three specialized student support positions. Standards of Quality; specialized student support positions. Modifies a school personnel requirement in Standard 2 of the Standards of Quality to require each school board to provide at least three specialized student support positions, including school social workers, school psychologists, school nurses, licensed behavior analysts, licensed assistant behavior analysts, and other licensed health and behavioral positions, per 1,000 students.

SB 1276 Essential health benefits; abortion coverage. Essential health benefits; abortion coverage. Removes the prohibition on the provision of coverage for abortions in any qualified health insurance plan that is sold or offered for sale through a health benefits exchange established or operating in Virginia. This bill is identical to HB 1896.

SB 1288 Special education; Department of and the Board of Education to develop new policies and procedures. Department of Education and Board of Education; special education. Requires the Department of Education and the Board of Education to develop new policies and procedures and effect numerous modifications to existing policies and procedures to improve the administration and oversight of special education in the Commonwealth. This bill is identical to HB 2299.

SB 1302 Crisis Call Center Fund; created, collection of 988 charges.Crisis call center; Crisis Call Center Fund established. Provides that the crisis call center, which under current law is administered by the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services (the Department), shall provide crisis intervention services and crisis care coordination to individuals accessing the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline from any jurisdiction in the Commonwealth 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The bill directs the Department, in its development of the crisis call center, community care teams, and mobile crisis teams, to comply with any applicable requirements of the National Suicide Hotline Designation Act of 2020 and to provide for consistency with federal guidelines promulgated under such law. The bill contains immunity provisions for any originating service provider and its employees and agents acting pursuant to the act.The bill creates a $0.12 surcharge on postpaid wireless charges and a $0.08 surcharge on prepaid wireless charges to be collected by the Department of Taxation and distributed to the Crisis Call Center Fund, established by the bill, to be used for establishing and administering the crisis call center. The bill also increases the wireless E-911 surcharge from $0.75 to $0.82 and the prepaid wireless E-911 charge from $0.50 to $0.55. The increased revenue shall be dedicated to public safety answering points.

SB 1303 Local school divisions; availability of virtual and in-person learning to all students.School boards; in-person instruction. Requires each school board to offer in-person instruction to each student enrolled in the local school division in a public elementary and secondary school for at least the minimum number of required instructional hours and to each student enrolled in the local school division in a public school-based early childhood care and education program for the entirety of the instructional time provided pursuant to such program. The bill contains certain exceptions to the abovementioned requirement. The bill requires each school board to provide such in-person instruction in a manner in which it adheres, to the maximum extent practicable, to any currently applicable mitigation strategies for early childhood care and education programs and elementary and secondary schools to reduce the transmission of COVID-19 that have been provided by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The bill requires the Department of Education to establish benchmarks for successful virtual learning and guidelines for providing interventions to students who fail to meet such benchmarks and for transitioning such students back to in-person instruction. The bill also requires all teachers and school staff to be offered access to receive an approved COVID-19 vaccination through their relevant local health district. The bill has an expiration date of August 1, 2022.

SB 1304 Community services boards; discharge planning.Community services boards; discharge planning. Reduces from within 30 days to within 72 hours of an individual’s identification as ready for discharge the time by which a community services board must document its disagreement with the determination that an individual is ready for discharge from a state hospital or training center. The bill also directs the Commissioner of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services to establish a work group with representatives of the Virginia Association of Community Services Boards to (i) review the current process for discharging patients from state mental health hospitals, including the current assigned responsibilities of state hospital staff and community services board staff, as well as the barriers to timely discharge for patients clinically ready to discharge, and (ii) develop potential options to expedite the discharge process for individuals who can be safely discharged back into the community. The bill directs the work group to develop a plan that includes recommendations for expediting the discharge process and identify the necessary funding to ensure that individuals receive essential services upon discharge and that discharges are timely. The bill requires the work group to report its findings and conclusions and its plan to the Chairmen of the House Committee on Health, Welfare and Institutions and the Senate Committee on Education and Health by September 1, 2021.

SB 1307 School-based health services; Bd. of MAS to amend state plan for services to provide for payment.Department of Medical Assistance Services; school-based health services; telemedicine. Directs the Board of Medical Assistance Services to amend the state plan for medical assistance services to provide for payment of medical assistance services delivered to Medicaid-eligible students when such services qualify for reimbursement by the Virginia Medicaid program and may be provided by school divisions, regardless of whether the student receiving care has an individualized education program or whether the health care service is included in a student’s individualized education program. The bill specifies that such services shall include those covered under the state plan for medical assistance services or by the Early and Periodic Screening, Diagnostic, and Treatment benefit as specified in § 1905(r) of the federal Social Security Act, and shall include a provision for payment of medical assistance for health care services provided through telemedicine services. The bill also requires the Department of Medical Assistance Services to provide technical assistance to the Department of Education and local school divisions to facilitate their understanding of and compliance with federal ordering, referring, and prescribing provider screening and enrollment requirements.

SB 1313 Children’s Services Act; funds expended special education programs.
Children’s Services Act; special education programs. Requires that funds expended for private special education services under the Children’s Services Act only be expended on educational programs that are licensed by the Board of Education or an equivalent out-of-state licensing agency. The bill also provides that as of July 1, 2022, such funds may only be expended for programs that the Office of Children’s Services certify as having reported their tuition rates.The bill adds children and youth previously placed in approved private school educational programs for at least six months who will receive transitional services in a public school setting to the target population for eligibility for the state pool of funds. The bill provides that state funds shall be allocated for no longer than 12 months for transitional services.The bill requires the Secretaries of Education and Health and Human Resources, in conjunction with the Office of Children’s Services and the Department of Education, to establish a work group with appropriate stakeholders to develop a detailed plan to direct the transfer of Children’s Services Act funds currently reserved for children requiring an educational placement in a private special education day school or residential facility to the Department of Education, as well as several other topics. The bill requires that the work group submit its plan and recommendations to the Chairmen of the House Committee on Appropriations and Senate Committee on Finance and Appropriations by November 1, 2021, as well as a final plan and recommendations by November 1, 2022. This bill is identical to HB 2117.

SB 1320 Licensed certified midwives; clarifies definition, licensure, etc.Licensed certified midwives; licensure; practice. Defines “practice of licensed certified midwifery,” directs the Boards of Medicine and Nursing to establish criteria for the licensure and renewal of a license as a certified midwife, and requires licensed certified midwives to practice in consultation with a licensed physician in accordance with a practice agreement. The bill also directs the Department of Health Professions to convene a work group to study the licensure and regulation of certified nurse midwives, certified midwives, and certified professional midwives to determine the appropriate licensing entity for such professionals. The bill requires the Department to report its findings and conclusions to the Governor and the General Assembly by November 1, 2021. This bill is identical to HB 1953.

SB 1322 Public schools; seizure management and action plans, biennial training, effective date.Public schools; seizure management and action plans; biennial training. Provides for the submission and utilization of seizure management and action plans for students with a diagnosed seizure disorder. The bill requires each such seizure management and action plan to state that such plan is separate from any individualized education program (IEP) or Section 504 Plan that is in place for the student and nothing in such plan shall be construed to abrogate any provision of any IEP or Section 504 Plan that is in place for the student. The bill requires that school nurses and certain school division employees biennially complete Board of Education-approved training in the treatment of students with seizure disorders. The bill provides immunity from civil liability for acts or omissions related to providing for the care of a student under a seizure management and action plan. The bill has a delayed effective date of July 1, 2022.

SB 1333 Pharmaceutical processors; permits processors to produce & distribute cannabis products.Pharmaceutical processors; cannabis products. Permits pharmaceutical processors to produce and distribute cannabis products other than cannabis oil and for that purpose defines the terms “botanical cannabis,” “cannabis product,” and “usable cannabis.” The bill requires the Board of Pharmacy to establish testing standards for botanical cannabis and botanical cannabis products, establish a registration process for botanical cannabis products, and promulgate emergency regulations to implement the provisions of the bill. The bill provides that if a practitioner determines it is consistent with the standard of care to dispense botanical cannabis to a minor, the written certification shall specifically authorize such dispensing. The bill allows the Board of Pharmacy to assess and collect botanical cannabis regulatory fees to cover costs associated with the implementation of the provisions of the bill, including costs for new personnel, training, promulgation of regulations and guidance documents, and information technology. The bill exempts the Board of Pharmacy’s acquisition of a commercially available cannabis-specific software product to implement the provisions of the bill from the Virginia Public Procurement Act. This bill is identical to HB 2218.

SB 1338 Telemedicine services; remote patient monitoring services.Telemedicine services; remote patient monitoring services. Requires the Board of Medical Assistance Services to include in the state plan for medical assistance services a provision for the payment of medical assistance for remote patient monitoring services provided via telemedicine for (i) high-risk pregnant persons; (ii) medically complex infants and children; (iii) transplant patients; (iv) patients who have undergone surgery, for up to three months following the date of such surgery; and (v) patients with a chronic health condition who have had two or more hospitalizations or emergency department visits related to such chronic health condition in the previous 12 months. The services include monitoring of clinical patient data such as weight, blood pressure, pulse, pulse oximetry, blood glucose, and other patient physiological data; treatment adherence monitoring; and interactive video conferencing with or without digital image upload. The bill also clarifies the definition of “telemedicine services” to provide that nothing in the bill precludes coverage for a service that is not a telemedicine service, including real-time audio-only telehealth services. The bill directs the Department of Medical Assistance Services to adopt regulations for reimbursement for telemedicine services delivered through audio-only telephone and to promulgate and adopt uniform regulations for remote patient monitoring for all Medicaid managed care organizations to implement and follow. The provisions of the bill are contingent on funding in a general appropriation act. This bill incorporates SB 1416.

SB 1356 Hospitals, nursing homes, etc.; visits by clergy.Hospitals, nursing homes, certified nursing facilities, hospices, and assisted living facilities; visits by clergy; public health emergency. Requires the Board of Health to include in regulations governing hospitals, nursing homes, certified nursing facilities, and hospices and the Board of Social Services to include in regulations governing assisted living facilities a requirement that, during a public health emergency related to a communicable disease of public health threat, each hospital, nursing home, certified nursing facility, hospice, and assisted living facility establish a protocol to allow patients to receive visits from a rabbi, priest, minister, or clergy of any religious denomination or sect consistent with guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and subject to compliance with any executive order, order of public health, Department of Health guidance, or any other applicable federal or state guidance having the effect of limiting visitation. The bill provides that such protocol may restrict the frequency and duration of visits and may require visits to be conducted virtually using interactive audio or video technology when use of interactive audio or video technology is determined to be necessary to comply with any applicable federal or state guidance or to protect the health and safety of the person, patients, or staff. Additionally, the protocol may require the person visiting a patient to comply with all reasonable requirements of the facility adopted to protect the health and safety of the person, patients, and staff.

SB 1357 Standards of Learning; reading & mathematics assessments for students in grades three through eight.Standards of Learning assessments; reading and mathematics; grades three through eight; individual student growth. Requires the Board of Education to establish, in lieu of a one-time end-of-year assessment and for the purpose of providing measures of individual student growth over the course of the school year, a through-year growth assessment system, aligned with the Standards of Learning, for the administration of reading and mathematics assessments in grades three through eight. The bill requires such through-year growth assessment system to include at least one beginning-of-year, one mid-year, and one end-of-year assessment in order to provide individual student growth scores over the course of the school year, provided that the total time scheduled for taking all such assessments shall not exceed 150 percent of the time scheduled for taking a single end-of-year proficiency assessment. The bill requires the Department of Education to ensure adequate training for teachers and principals on how to interpret and use student growth data from such assessments to improve reading and mathematics instruction in grades three through eight throughout the school year. The bill provides that with such funds and content as are available for such purpose, such through-year growth assessment system shall provide accurate measurement of a student’s performance, through computer adaptive technology, using test items at, below, and above the student’s grade level as necessary. The bill requires full implementation of such system no later than the 2022–2023 school year and partial implementation during the 2021–2022 school year consisting of one beginning-of-year assessment and one end-of-year assessment. This bill is identical to HB 2027.

SB 1387 Students; eligibility for in-state tuition.Public institutions of higher education; certain students; financial assistance programs. Provides that students who meet the criteria to be deemed eligible for in-state tuition regardless of their citizenship or immigration status shall be afforded the same educational benefits, including financial assistance programs administered by the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia, the State Board for Community Colleges, or a public institution of higher education, as any other individual who is eligible for in-state tuition. The bill directs the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia, in coordination with institutions of higher education in the Commonwealth, to promulgate regulations to implement the provisions of the bill. The bill has a delayed effective date of August 1, 2022, and is identical to HB 2123.

SB 1405 Get Skilled, Get a Job, Give Back (G3) Fund and Program; established.Get Skilled, Get a Job, Give Back (G3) Fund and Program established. Establishes the Get Skilled, Get a Job, Give Back (G3) Fund and requires the Virginia Community College System to establish the G3 Program for the purpose of providing financial assistance from the Fund to certain low-income and middle-income Virginia students who are enrolled in an educational program at an associate-degree-granting public institution of higher education that leads to an occupation in a certain high-demand field. The bill contains provisions for student eligibility, financial assistance award amounts, and data reporting. This bill is identical to HB 2204.

SB 1408 Health Care, Joint Commission on; repeals sunset provision.Joint Commission on Health Care; sunset. Repeals the sunset provision for the Joint Commission on Health Care.

SB 1421 Brain injury; clarifies definition.Brain injury; definition. Eliminates the requirement that an injury occur before the age of 65 to constitute a brain injury as that term is used in the context of licensure of private providers of behavioral health services. This bill is identical to HB 1873.

SB 1436 Eligible Health Care Provider Reserve Directory; established.Department of Health; Eligible Health Care Provider Reserve Directory. Directs the Department of Health to establish an Eligible Health Care Provider Reserve Directory (the Directory) to collect information regarding eligible health care providers in the Commonwealth who are qualified and who may be available to assist in the response to a public health emergency. The Directory shall include the name, contact information, and licensure, certification, or registration type and status of the eligible health care provider or, if the eligible health care provider is a fourth-year medical student, academic standing and anticipated graduation date of the fourth-year medical student if the student registers for inclusion in the Directory. Every health regulatory board of the Department of Health Professions, the Office of Emergency Medical Services of the Department of Health, and each medical school located in the Commonwealth, upon the request of a fourth-year medical student, shall provide such information to the Department of Health for inclusion in the Directory. However, a health regulatory board shall not report information for any such person who has notified the health regulatory board in writing that he does not want his information included in the Directory.

SB 1439 Students; guidelines on excused student absences, civic engagement.Department of Education; guidelines on excused student absences; civic engagement. Provides that, subject to guidelines established by the Department of Education, each school board (i) shall permit one school day-long excused absence per school year for any middle school or high school student in the local school division who is absent from school to engage in a civic event and (ii) may permit additional excused absences for such students who are absent for such purposes. The bill also provides that local school boards may require that the student provide advance notice of the intended absence and require that the student provide documentation of participation in a civic event. This bill is identical to HB 1940.

SB 1464 Drug Control Act; adds certain chemicals to Schedule I of Act.Drug Control Act; Schedule I. Adds certain chemicals to Schedule I of the Drug Control Act. The Board of Pharmacy has added these substances to Schedule I in an expedited regulatory process. A substance added via this process is removed from the schedule after 18 months unless a general law is enacted adding the substance to the schedule.

SB 1465 Illegal gambling; skill games, definitions, enforcement by localities and Attorney General.Illegal gambling; skill games; civil penalty; enforcement by localities and Attorney General. Provides that any person who conducts, finances, manages, supervises, directs, or owns a gambling device that is located in an unregulated location is subject to a civil penalty of up to $25,000. The bill provides that the Attorney General, an attorney for the Commonwealth, or the attorney for any locality may cause an action in equity to be brought in the name of the Commonwealth or of the locality, as applicable, to enjoin the operation of a gambling device in violation of this section and may request attachment against all such devices and any moneys within such devices. The bill provides that any civil penalties brought in the name of the Commonwealth shall be paid into the Literary Fund and that any civil penalties brought in the name of a locality shall be paid into the general fund of the locality.

Commissions & Boards

Commission on Youth

Source: Website

The Commission on Youth is tasked with providing a forum for review and study of youth policies and services. Whether you are a member or staff of the General Assembly, a government official, service provider, educator, parent or caregiver, or interested member of the public, you will find this website a wonderful resource on the Commission’s work on a host of issues, from child welfare to juvenile justice, or from mental health to education.

Brown v. Board of Education Scholarship Awards Committee v. Board of Education Scholarship Awards Committee

Source: Website

The Brown v. Board of Education Scholarship Program was established in accordance with § 30-231.8  of the Code of Virginia for the purpose of providing a public education to persons who were denied an education in the public schools of Virginia between 1954 and 1964, in jurisdictions in which the public schools were closed to avoid desegregation.

Virginia Disability Commission

Source: Webpage

The purpose of the Commission is to identify and recommend legislative priorities and policies for adoption or examination by the General Assembly in order to provide ongoing support in developing and reviewing services and funding related to Virginians with physical and sensory disabilities.

Joint Commission on Health Care

Source: Website

The JCHC was established as a standing commission of the Virginia General Assembly in 1992. JCHC seeks through its research, recommendations, and legislative actions to “ensure that the Commonwealth as provider, financier, and regulator adopts the most cost-effective and efficacious means of delivery of health care services so that the greatest number of Virginians receive quality health care.” JCHC’s statutory purpose and authority are denoted in Code of Virginia §§ 30-168 through 170.

Commonwealth Council on Aging

Source: Webpage

To promote an effective, coordinated approach to meeting the needs of older Virginians.

Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Disorders Commission

Source: Website

The 15 appointed members of the Commission serve in an advisory capacity to the Governor and the Secretary of Health and Human Resources (HHR), and assist people with Alzheimer’s disease or related disorders, as well as their caregivers. Commission meetings are held quarterly and members also serve on workgroups. In 2011 the Commission released Virginia’s first Dementia State Plan, which was updated in 2015 and will be revised every four years to remain receptive to the needs of persons with dementia and their caregivers. The Commission also sponsors a website that is accessible to Virginia citizens who wish to learn more about the Commonwealth’s commitment to those affected by Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia. This website contains information that can assist both family members and community service providers. It lists a series of free educational “webinars” on topics that impact persons dealing with the disease. The website is www.alzpossible.org.

Autism Advisory Council

Source: Webpage

To promote coordination of services and resources among agencies involved in the delivery of services to Virginians with autism spectrum disorders and to increase public awareness of such services and resources.

Block Grants

Source: Webpage

To ensure the continued receipt of federal funds pursuant to the Preventive Health and Human Services Block Grant, the Community Services Block Grant, or any other federal block grant program requiring legislative public hearings.
Report Date: The Subcommittee shall be continued for so long as federal law requires legislative hearings as a condition of any application for or receipt of any federal block grant moneys.

Commonwealth Health Research Board

Source: Website

Provide financial support, in the form of grants, donations, or other assistance, for research efforts that have the potential of maximizing human health benefits for the citizens of the Commonwealth.

Joint Subcommittee for Health and Human Resources Oversight

Source: Webpage

The Joint Subcommittee shall monitor, evaluate and respond to federal legislation that repeals, amends or replaces the Affordable Care Act (ACA), Medicaid (Title XIX of the Social Security Act), the Children’s Health Insurance Program (Title XXI of the Social Security Act) or any proposals to block grant or change the method by which these programs are funded. The joint subcommittee shall recommend actions to be taken by the General Assembly to address the impact of any such federal legislation that would affect the state budget and health care coverage now available to Virginians. Furthermore, the subcommittee shall evaluate federal changes for opportunities to improve Virginia’s Medicaid and other health insurance programs. The Joint Subcommittee shall provide ongoing oversight of initiatives and operations of the Health and Human Resources agencies.The joint subcommittee shall examine progress made in implementing changes to: (i) Medicaid managed care programs, including managed long-term supports and services (the Commonwealth Coordinated Care Plus program) and changes to the Medallion program; (ii) Medicaid waiver programs including the Medicaid waivers serving individuals with developmental disabilities; (iii) the Medicaid Enterprise System; (iv) improve eligibility, enrollment and renewal processes in the Medicaid and CHIP programs; (v) the organizational structure and realignment of staff and resources of the Department of Medical Assistance Services resulting from the change from a fee-for-service to a managed care delivery system; (vi) improve the cost effective delivery of services through the Comprehensive Services Act; and (vii) initiatives and programmatic changes across the Health and Human Resources agencies to ensure efficient and effective use of resources across the Secretariat.

Health Insurance Reform Commissio

Source: Webpage

The Health Insurance Reform Commission was established by House Bill 2138 of the 2013 Session. The Commission’s powers and duties include monitoring the implementation of the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (the Act); assessing proposed mandated health insurance benefits and providers; and developing recommendations to increase access to health insurance coverage are reasonable, and encourage a robust market for health insurance products in the Commonwealth.

Virginia Health Workforce Development Authority,

Source: Website

To provide for the health, welfare, convenience, knowledge, benefit, and prosperity of the residents of the Commonwealth and such other persons who might be served by the Authority. The Authority is being established to move the Commonwealth forward in achieving its vision of ensuring a quality health workforce for all Virginians.

Henrietta Lacks Commission

Source: Webpage

The Henrietta Lacks Commission (the Commission) is established as an advisory commission in the executive branch of state government. The purpose of the Commission is to sustain the legacy of the life-changing contribution of Henrietta Lacks to medical science by advancing cancer research and treatment through the creation of a biomedical research and data center.

Advisory Council on Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorders (PANS) Associated with Streptococcal Infections and Pediatric Acute-Onset Neuropsychiatric Syndrome (PANDAS)

Source: Webpage

There is hereby created in the executive branch of state government the Advisory Council on Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorders Associated with Streptococcal Infections and Pediatric Acute-onset Neuropsychiatric Syndrome (the Advisory Council), for the purpose of advising the Commissioner of Health on research, diagnosis, treatment, and education relating to pediatric autoimmune neuropsychiatric disorders associated with streptococcal infections and pediatric acute-onset neuropsychiatric syndrome

Task Force on Services for Survivors of Sexual Assault

Source: Webpage

Develops model treatment and transfer plans for use by transfer hospitals, treatment hospitals, and pediatric health care facilities and works with hospitals and pediatric health care facilities to facilitate the development of treatment and transfer plans; develops model written transfer agreements for use by treatment hospitals, transfer hospitals, and pediatric health care facilities and works with treatment hospitals, transfer hospitals, and pediatric health care facilities to facilitate the development of transfer agreements; develops model written agreements for use by treatment hospitals and approved pediatric health care facilities required to enter into agreements with rape crisis centers; works with treatment hospitals and approved pediatric health care facilities to develop plans to employ or contract with sexual assault forensic examiners to ensure the provision of treatment services to survivors of sexual assault by sexual assault forensic examiners, including plans for implementation of on-call systems to ensure availability of sexual assault forensic examiners; and works with treatment hospitals and approved pediatric health care facilities to identify and recommend processes to ensure compliance with law related to the creation, storage, and retention of photographic and other documentation and evidence.

Southwest Virginia Health Authority

Source: Website

The Authority may acquire, construct, equip, establish, improve, maintain, and/or operate hospitals or health centers and may condemn property and issue bonds and other obligations for such purpose.

Commission on School Construction and Modernization

Source: Webpage

Assesses the Commonwealth’s school facilities and determines school construction and modernization funding needs; identifies funding mechanisms and makes recommendations to the Governor and the General Assembly; establishes best practices in school modernization and construction for school divisions; creates standardized construction designs and procurement practices to recommend and make available to local school divisions; and Identifying potential cost-saving measures for implementation by local school divisions to minimize construction and modernization costs where possible; and identifies potential cost-saving measures for implementation by local school divisions to minimize construction and modernization costs where possible.

Joint Subcommittee Early Childhood Care and Education

Source: Webpage

(i) review the cost-effectiveness of federal and state funding used to improve Virginia's early childhood care and education system, (ii) ensure that the transition of child care regulation from the Board of Social Services to the Board of Education occurs seamlessly without impacting health and safety oversight functions, (iii) ensure that the transition of functions from the Department of Social Services to the Department of Education occurs seamlessly without the interruption of the provision of state services or undue impact on the operation of either agency, (iv) review the implementation of the Board of Education's Quality Rating Implementation System, (v) review workforce needs for Virginia's early childhood education system, (vi) further facilitate partnerships between school divisions and private providers for the Virginia Preschool Initiative, (vii) consider recommendations and options included in the 2017 JLARC report on Improving Virginia's Early Childhood Development Programs, and (viii) consider funding methodology changes to transition the Virginia Preschool Initiative funding model to maximize the number of children served, while recognizing prevailing costs.

Education Commission of the States

Source: Webpage

To improve public education by facilitating the exchange of information, ideas and experiences among state policymakers and education leaders.

Task Force to Assist in Identification of the History of Formerly Enslaved African Americans in Virginia

Source: Webpage

Task Force shall assist the Virginia Foundation for the Humanities Foundation 1. Promote the identification, preservation, and conservation of historic sites significant to the history, presence, and contributions of formerly enslaved African Americans in Virginia; 2. Assess the extent to which students and the public are knowledgeable concerning African American history, the African slave trade, slavery in Virginia and America, and the vestiges of slavery in the Commonwealth and the nation; 3. Identify the contributions of African Americans to Virginia, the nation, and the world; 4. Inventory relevant African American historical sites, memorials, exhibits, and resources in the Commonwealth and assess the potential economic impact of tourism and economic development promotion relative to such sites; 5. Develop a register of historical sites significant to African American history in Virginia that should be preserved and recommend options for preservation and ways to increase tourism revenues; and 6. Develop and maintain a roster of volunteer historians, educators, businesses, organizations, and speakers to act as resource persons for classroom teachers on African American history, the African slave trade, American slavery, the impact of slavery on modern society, and the contributions of African Americans to Virginia and the nation.

Board of Trustees Frontier Culture Museum of Virginia

Source: Website

To construct, operate, and maintain, in the Augusta County, Staunton and Waynesboro areas of the Commonwealth, an outdoor museum to commemorate on an international scale the contribution that the pioneers and colonial frontiersmen and frontierswomen of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries made to the creation and development of the United States

Joint Subcommittee on the Future Competitiveness of Virginia – Higher Education

Source: Webpage

The Chairmen of the House Appropriations and Senate Finance Committees shall each appoint four members from their respective committees to a Joint Subcommittee on the Future Competitiveness of Virginia Higher Education to (a) review ways to maintain and improve the quality of higher education, while providing for broad access and affordability; (b) examine the impact of financial, demographic, and competitive changes on the sustainability of individual institutions and the system as a whole; (c) identify best practices to make the system more efficient, including shared services, institutional flexibility, and easily accessible academic pathways; (d) evaluate the use of distance education and online instruction across the Commonwealth and appropriate business models for such programs; (e) review current need-based financial aid programs and alternative models to best provide for student affordability and completion; (f) review the recommendations of the Joint Legislative Audit and Review Commission on the study of the cost efficiency of higher education institutions and make recommendations to their respective committees on the implementation of those recommendations; (g) study the effectiveness and value of transfer students; (h) evaluate the effectiveness of dual enrollment in reducing the cost of higher education; and (i) study the effectiveness of preparing teachers to enter the K-12 system.

Board of Trustees Institute for Advanced Learning and Research

Source: Webpage

To seek to diversify the Dan River Region’s economy by engaging the resources of Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in partnership with Danville Community College and Averett University and public and private bodies and organizations of the region and state.

Virginia Council on Interstate Compact on Educational Opportunity for Military Children

Source: Webpage

To remove barriers to educational success imposed on children of military families because of frequent moves and deployment of their parents.

Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation Board of Trustees

Source: Webpage

Do all things necessary and proper to further an appreciation of the contributions of the first permanent English-speaking settlers and their American Indian neighbors of Virginia and the United States to the building of our Commonwealth and nation, to commemorate the winning of American independence on the battlefield at Yorktown, and to enhance our understanding of the making of the United States Constitution and Bill of Rights, including Virginia’s role in shaping the fundamental principles of the American constitutional system.

Memorial Commission Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Source: Website

To identify, plan, develop, and implement appropriate programs and events that further the philosophy and memory of Dr. King.

New College Institute

Source: Website

Seek to diversify the region’s economy by engaging the resources of other institutions of higher education, public and private bodies, and organizations of the region and state. Serve as a catalyst for economic and community transformation by leveraging and brokering resources that support economic diversity. Facilitate development of the technology and trained workforce necessary for new economic enterprises to flourish, using the resources available from collaborating educational institutions. Expand educational opportunities in the region by providing access to degree-granting programs, including undergraduate, graduate, and professional programs, through partnerships with private and public institutions of higher education, the public schools, and public and private sectors. Encourage and coordinate the development and delivery of degree programs and other credit and noncredit courses with a focus on statewide and regional critical shortage areas as well as the needs of industry. This shall include needed adult education and workforce training. Serve as a resource and referral center by maintaining and disseminating information on existing educational programs, research, and university outreach and technology resources.

Roanoke Higher Education Authority

Source: Website

To expand access to higher education in the Roanoke Valley by providing for adult and continuing education and degree-granting programs, including undergraduate, graduate and professional programs, through partnerships with the Commonwealth’s public and private institutions of higher education.

School Readiness Committee

Source: Webpage

Secretary of Education; establishment of School Readiness Committee. Directs the Secretary of Education to establish a School Readiness Committee with the first goal of addressing the development and alignment of an effective professional development and credentialing system for the early childhood education workforce in the Commonwealth, including the (i) development of a competency-based professional development pathway for practitioners who teach children birth to age five in both public and private early childhood education programs; (ii) consideration of articulation agreements between associate and baccalaureate degree programs; (iii) refinement of teacher licensure and education programs to address competencies specific to early childhood development; (iv) alignment of existing professional development funding streams; and (v) development of innovative approaches to increasing accessibility, availability, affordability, and accountability of the Commonwealth’s workforce development system for early childhood education teachers and providers.

Southwest Virginia Higher Education Center Board of Trustees

Source: Website

Encourage and coordinate the development and delivery of continuing education programs offered by those educational institutions serving the region.

Southwest Virginia Public Education Consortium Governing Board

Source: Webpage

Coordinate with those educational institutions and agencies in the Commonwealth and surrounding areas to develop joint educational initiatives; promote and establish, in conjunction with the Department of Education and the region’s public school divisions, regional programs to address area educational needs; coordinate the development and sharing of programs, educational techniques, and resources among and between the region’s school divisions and institutions of higher education to enhance the educational opportunities for students and teachers in Southwest Virginia; and provide technical assistance to school divisions throughout the Commonwealth for the implementation of effective educational programs.

Advisory Board Teacher Education and Licensure

Source: Webpage

The Advisory Board on Teacher Education and Licensure shall advise the Board of Education and submit recommendations on policies applicable to the qualifications, examination, licensure, and regulation of school personnel including revocation, suspension, denial, cancellation, reinstatement, and renewals of licensure, fees for processing applications, standards for the approval of preparation programs, reciprocal approval of preparation programs, and other related matters as the Board of Education may request or the Advisory Board may deem necessary. The final authority for licensure of school personnel shall remain with the Board of Education.

Board of Veterans Services

Source: Webpage

Advise the Director of the Department of Veterans’ Services on matters relating to veterans.

Board of the Virginia College Savings Plan

Source: Webpage

To administer the Virginia College Savings Plan established to enhance the accessibility and affordability of higher education for all citizens of the Commonwealth.

Board of Trustees Virginia Retirement System

Source: Website

Administer the Virginia Retirement System: a retirement system for teachers, state employees, and employees of local participating political subdivisions.

Western Virginia Public Education Consortium

Source: Website

Coordinate with organizations and agencies providing programs and services to Consortium schools division to reduce duplication and optimize use of available resources.

Commemorative Commission to Honor the Contributions of the Women of Virginia

Source: Website

The Commission shall determine and recommend to the General Assembly an appropriate monument in Capitol Square to commemorate the contributions of the women of Virginia. The Commission shall seek private funding for the operation and support of the Commission and the erection of an appropriate monument.

World War I and World War II Commemoration Commission

Source: Website

The Commission shall plan, develop, and carry out programs and activities appropriate to commemorate the 100th anniversary of World War I and the 75th anniversary of World War II.

X
Finance and Appropriations CommitteeFinance and Appropriations Committee

Meets on: Tuesday and Wednesday at 9:00 a.m. in Committee Room B, Ground Floor, Pocahontas Building

Members: Janet Howell (Chair) – George Barker – Creigh Deeds – Adam Ebbin – John Edwards – Emmett Hanger – Mamie Locke – Louise Lucas – Dave Marsden – Jennifer McClellan – Steve Newman – Tommy Norment – Chap Petersen – Frank Ruff – Dick Saslaw – Jill Vogel

(11 Democrats and 5 Republicans)

Subcommittees:

  • Capital Outlay
  • Claims
  • Economic Development and Natural Resources
  • General Government
  • Health and Human Resources
  • Higher Education
  • K-12 Education
  • Public Safety
  • Resources
  • Transportation

 

i

Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”)

  • SB 1112 Research and development expenses; tax credit available against the bank franchise tax.
  • SB 1130 Personal property tax; exemption for motor vehicle of a 100 percent disabled veteran.
  • SB 1134 Refunding bonds; alters the principal and interest requirements.
  • SB 1145 Commonwealth of Virginia Higher Educational Institutions Bond Act of 2021; created.
  • SB 1146 Income tax, state; conformity with the Internal Revenue Code.
  • SB 1254 Sports betting; clarifies certain procedures.
  • SB 1155 Capital outlay plan; repeals existing six-year capital outlay for projects to be funded.
  • SB 1156 Technology Development Grant Fund; created.
  • SB 1158 Port of Virginia tax credits; extends the sunset date.
  • SB 1162 Tax credit; agricultural best management practices.
  • SB 1163 Agricultural equipment; establishes a refundable individual and corporate income tax credit.
  • SB 1197 Virginia housing opportunity; tax credit established.
  • SB 1201 Energy storage systems; definitions, tax exemption, revenue share for systems.
  • SB 1204 George Mason University; management agreement with the Commonwealth.
  • SB 1251 Virginia Retirement System; technical amendments.
  • SB 1252 Coal tax credits; sunset dates.
  • SB 1326 Local cigarette taxes; regional cigarette tax boards.
  • SB 1398 Retail sales and transient occupancy taxes; room rentals.
  • SB 1403 Retail Sales and Use Tax; exemption for personal protective equipment.
  • SB 1423 Data centers; sales and use tax exemption, identifying a “distressed locality.”
  • SB 1438 Combined transient occupancy and food and beverage tax; technical amendments.

Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”.

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Finance and Appropriations 2021 Committee Hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee: 1/19 1/20 1/21 1/26 1/27 2/2 2/3 2/16 2/17 2/22 

i

A proposal to make it illegal for Virginia politicians to use campaign funds to enrich themselves failed in the state Senate Tuesday, the latest sign of the legislature’s continuing wariness on campaign finance reform.

Several senators said they agreed with the proposal generally, but insisted policymakers should take more time to study it before imposing new rules on candidates running in Virginia’s wide-open fundraising system.

“The critical component here is to actually get it right,” said Sen. Jill Vogel, R-Fauquier, an election lawyer who noted that she sponsored a similar bill in the past and wants it to be wrapped into an upcoming study on comprehensive campaign finance reform.

MCLEAN, VA. (AP) — A Virginia Senate budget amendment would block the D.C. region’s Metro system from receiving at least $166 million in state funding unless it adds the name of Capital One bank to a northern Virginia Metrorail station.
Capital One wants the McLean station near its corporate headquarters to be renamed McLean-Capital One Hall to recognize a 1,600-seat theater it’s building on the campus.

Top News

i

Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”)

  • SB 1112 Research and development expenses; tax credit available against the bank franchise tax.
  • SB 1130 Personal property tax; exemption for motor vehicle of a 100 percent disabled veteran.
  • SB 1134 Refunding bonds; alters the principal and interest requirements.
  • SB 1145 Commonwealth of Virginia Higher Educational Institutions Bond Act of 2021; created.
  • SB 1146 Income tax, state; conformity with the Internal Revenue Code.
  • SB 1254 Sports betting; clarifies certain procedures.
  • SB 1155 Capital outlay plan; repeals existing six-year capital outlay for projects to be funded.
  • SB 1156 Technology Development Grant Fund; created.
  • SB 1158 Port of Virginia tax credits; extends the sunset date.
  • SB 1162 Tax credit; agricultural best management practices.
  • SB 1163 Agricultural equipment; establishes a refundable individual and corporate income tax credit.
  • SB 1197 Virginia housing opportunity; tax credit established.
  • SB 1201 Energy storage systems; definitions, tax exemption, revenue share for systems.
  • SB 1204 George Mason University; management agreement with the Commonwealth.
  • SB 1251 Virginia Retirement System; technical amendments.
  • SB 1252 Coal tax credits; sunset dates.
  • SB 1326 Local cigarette taxes; regional cigarette tax boards.
  • SB 1398 Retail sales and transient occupancy taxes; room rentals.
  • SB 1403 Retail Sales and Use Tax; exemption for personal protective equipment.
  • SB 1423 Data centers; sales and use tax exemption, identifying a “distressed locality.”
  • SB 1438 Combined transient occupancy and food and beverage tax; technical amendments.

Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”.

i
Finance and Appropriations 2021 Committee Hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee: 1/19 1/20 1/21 1/26 1/27 2/2 2/3 2/16 2/17 2/22 

i

A proposal to make it illegal for Virginia politicians to use campaign funds to enrich themselves failed in the state Senate Tuesday, the latest sign of the legislature’s continuing wariness on campaign finance reform.

Several senators said they agreed with the proposal generally, but insisted policymakers should take more time to study it before imposing new rules on candidates running in Virginia’s wide-open fundraising system.

“The critical component here is to actually get it right,” said Sen. Jill Vogel, R-Fauquier, an election lawyer who noted that she sponsored a similar bill in the past and wants it to be wrapped into an upcoming study on comprehensive campaign finance reform.

MCLEAN, VA. (AP) — A Virginia Senate budget amendment would block the D.C. region’s Metro system from receiving at least $166 million in state funding unless it adds the name of Capital One bank to a northern Virginia Metrorail station.
Capital One wants the McLean station near its corporate headquarters to be renamed McLean-Capital One Hall to recognize a 1,600-seat theater it’s building on the campus.

Summary

Meets on: Tuesday and Wednesday at 9:00 a.m. in Committee Room B, Ground Floor, Pocahontas Building

Members: Janet Howell (Chair) – George Barker – Creigh Deeds – Adam Ebbin – John Edwards – Emmett Hanger – Mamie Locke – Louise Lucas – Dave Marsden – Jennifer McClellan – Steve Newman – Tommy Norment – Chap Petersen – Frank Ruff – Dick Saslaw – Jill Vogel

(11 Democrats and 5 Republicans)

Subcommittees:

  • Capital Outlay
  • Claims
  • Economic Development and Natural Resources
  • General Government
  • Health and Human Resources
  • Higher Education
  • K-12 Education
  • Public Safety
  • Resources
  • Transportation

 

About

From Senate Rules: “A Committee on Finance, 15 Senators, to consider matters concerning auditing; bills and resolutions for appropriations; the budget of the Commonwealth; claims; general and special revenues of the Commonwealth; all taxation and all matters concerning the expenditure of funds of the Commonwealth.”

Web

VA Legislative Information Systems (LIS)

Subcommittees

Meets on: Friday at 8:00 a.m. in Subcommittee Room #1 5th Floor, Pocahontas Building

Members:   Creigh Deeds(Chair),  Janet Howell,   Emmett HangerMamie Locke,  Tommy Norment  Dick Saslaw

Capital Outlay

Meets on: Friday at 8:00 a.m. in Subcommittee Room #1 5th Floor, Pocahontas Building

Members:  Creigh Deeds (Chair), Janet HowellEmmett Hanger,
Mamie Locke,   Tommy Norment,  Dick Saslaw

Claims

Meets on: Meets on Monday at upon adjournment of full committee in Senate Room A, Pocahontas Building

Members:  John Edwards (Chair),  Louise Lucas,   Chap Petersen,   Jill Vogel

Economic Development and Natural Resources

Meets on: Tuesday at 7:30 a.m. in Subcommittee Room #1, 5th Floor, Pocahontas Building

MembersDave Marsden (Chair),   Janet Howell,    Emmett Hanger,  Frank RuffDick Saslaw

General Government

Meets on: Tuesday at 7:30 a.m. in Leadership Conference Room, 6th Floor, Pocahontas Building

MembersChap Petersen (Chair),   Adam Ebbin,  Mamie Locke,  Steve NewmanTommy Norment,   Jill Vogel

Health and Human Resources

Meets on: Monday at 4:00 p.m. in Subcommittee Room #1 5th Floor, Pocahontas Building

MembersJanet Howell (Chair),  George BarkerCreigh Deeds,  Adam EbbinJohn EdwardsEmmett Hanger,  Jennifer McClellan,   Jill Vogel

Higher Education

Meets on: Tuesday at 3:30 p.m. in Subcommittee Room #1, 5th Floor, Pocahontas Building

MembersMamie Locke (Chair),  Janet Howell,  John Edwards,  Tommy Norment,  Frank RuffDick Saslaw

K-12 Education

Meets on: Thursday at 3:00 p.m. in Subcommittee Room #1, 5th Floor, Pocahontas Building

MembersDick Saslaw (Chair),  Janet Howell,  Jennifer McClellanSteve NewmanTommy Norment

Public Safety

Meets on: Meets on Monday at upon adjournment of full committee in Senate Room A, Pocahontas Building

MembersLouise Lucas (Chair),  Adam EbbinJohn EdwardsDave Marsden,  Tommy NormentChap PetersenFrank Ruff

Resources

Meets on: Meets on Monday at upon adjournment of full committee in Senate Room A, Pocahontas Building

MembersJanet Howell (Chair),  George BarkerJennifer McClellanSteve NewmanTommy Norment

Transportation

Meets on: Wednesday at 4:00 p.m. in Subcommittee Room #1, Pocahontas Building

Members:  George Barker (Chair)Creigh Deeds,  Emmett Hanger,  Dave MarsdenJennifer McClellanSteve Newman,  Dick Saslaw

Bills

Bills reported out 

SB 1102 Personal care aides; DMAS shall establish an orientation program for certain aides. Requires the Department of Medical Assistance Services to establish an orientation program for all personal care aides who provide self-directed services through the Medicaid program.

SB 1103 Virginia Freedom of Information Act; Virginia Parole Board member votes.

SB 1104 Parole; notice and certification, monthly reports. Provides that the Department of Corrections shall release a prisoner no sooner than 21 business days after the date of notification by the Virginia Parole Board (the Board) to the appropriate attorney for the Commonwealth of the decision to grant parole.

SB 1105 Post-conviction relief; previously admitted scientific evidence, report. Provides that a person who was convicted of a felony offense, or who was adjudicated delinquent of an offense that would have been a felony offense if committed by an adult, may petition the Court of Appeals to have his conviction vacated.

SB 1106 Public School Assistance Fund and Program; created. Creates the Public School Assistance Fund and Program, to be administered by the Department of Education, for the purpose of providing grants to school boards to be used for the purposes of repairing or replacing the heating, ventilation, air conditioning, electrical, or plumbing systems or the roofs of public elementary and secondary school buildings in the local school division, including financing costs for such repairs and replacements.

SB 1108 General district courts; jurisdictional limits. Increases from $25,000 to $50,000 the maximum civil jurisdictional limit of general district courts for civil actions for personal injury and wrongful death.

SB 1112 Research and development expenses; tax credit available against the bank franchise tax.

SB 1113 Communicating threats of death or bodily injury to a person with intent to intimidate; penalty. Provides that any person 18 years of age or older who communicates a threat in writing to another to kill or to do serious bodily injury to any other person and makes such threat is guilty of a Class 5 felony.

SB 1119 Law-enforcement agencies; body-worn camera systems. Creates a special nonreverting fund to be known as the Body-Worn Camera System Fund to assist state or local law-enforcement agencies with the costs of purchasing, operating, and maintaining body-worn camera systems.

SB 1125 Parole Board; notice of parole of prisoner to victim. Requires the Parole Board, within seven days of making any decision regarding the parole of a prisoner, to provide written or electronic notice of such decision to the victim of the crime for which the prisoner was incarcerated, unless the victim has submitted a written request to forgo such notice.

SB 1127 Charitable gaming; conduct of instant bingo, network bingo, pull tabs, and seal cards. The bill modifies the list of organizations that may conduct charitable gaming and requires such organizations to obtain a permit from the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services; however, the bill exempts certain organizations from the permit application and audit fees.

SB 1130 Personal property tax; exemption for motor vehicle of a 100 percent disabled veteran.

SB 1134 Refunding bonds; alters the principal and interest requirements. Alters the principal and interest requirements, maturity date, and allowable discount for previously issued refunding bonds.

SB 1145 Commonwealth of Virginia Higher Educational Institutions Bond Act of 2021; created.

SB 1146 Income tax, state; conformity with the Internal Revenue Code. Advances Virginia’s date of conformity with the Internal Revenue Code from December 31, 2019, to December 31, 2020.

SB 1147 Nurse Loan Repayment Program; certified nurse aide. Expands eligibility for the Nurse Loan Repayment Program to include certified nurse aides who meet criteria determined by the State Board of Health.

SB 1150 Military Spouse Liaison; position created in Department of Veterans Services, report.

SB 1155 Capital outlay plan; repeals existing six-year capital outlay for projects to be funded.

SB 1156 Technology Development Grant Fund; created.

B 1158 Port of Virginia tax credits; extends the sunset date. Extends the sunset for the international trade facility tax credit, the barge and rail usage tax credit, and the port volume increase tax credit from taxable years before January 1, 2022, to taxable years before January 1, 2025.

SB 1162 Tax credit; agricultural best management practices. Creates an enhanced individual and corporate income tax credit for taxable years 2021 through 2024 for the implementation of certain agricultural best management practices by the taxpayer that are required as part of a certified resource management plan.

SB 1163 Agricultural equipment; establishes a refundable individual and corporate income tax credit. Establishes for taxable years 2021 through 2024 a refundable individual and corporate income tax credit for 25 percent of expenditures, up to a maximum of $17,500, made for the purchase of conservation tillage and precision agriculture equipment certified by the Virginia Soil and Water Conservation Board.

SB 1165 Death penalty; abolition of current penalty.

SB 1170 Isle of Wight County; authorized to impose an additional local sales and use tax to support schools.

SB 1188 Virginia Agriculture Food Assistance Program and Fund; established and created.

SB 1193 Dairy Producer Margin Coverage Premium Assistance Program; established.

SB 1196 Teachers and other licensed school board employees; cultural competency. The bill requires teacher, principal, and division superintendent evaluations to include an evaluation of cultural competency.

SB 1197 Virginia housing opportunity; tax credit established.

SB 1201 Energy storage systems; definitions, tax exemption, revenue share for systems .Amends the definition of electric supplier to include certain battery storage facilities with a storage capacity greater than 25 megawatts and subjects such facilities to central assessment by the State Corporation Commission.

SB 1204 George Mason University; management agreement with the Commonwealth.

SB 1207 Solar and energy storage projects; siting agreements throughout the Commonwealth.

SB 1210 Permit fee schedules; DEQ to revise current schedule for nonhazardous solid waste mgmt. facilities.

SB 1211 Vehicle registration fees; imposes an additional fee to be deposited into Public Safety Trust Fund.

SB 1212 New River Valley Passenger Rail Station Authority; creation of authority in Planning District 4. Authorizes the creation of a regional passenger rail station authority in Planning District 4 to assist in the creation and maintenance of passenger rail in the region.

SB 1221 Loudoun County; operation of local health department.

SB 1226 Compensation Board; determining staffing and salaries for an attorney for the Commonwealth. Provides that the Compensation Board shall consider workload totals comprehensively, including the use of diversion programs and specialty dockets, when determining staffing and funding levels for an attorney for the Commonwealth and the office.

SB 1227 Hormonal contraceptives; payment of medical assistance for 12-month supply. Directs the Board of Medical Assistance Services to include in the state plan for medical assistance a provision for the payment of medical assistance for the dispensing or furnishing of up to a 12-month supply of hormonal contraceptives at one time for Medicaid and Family Access to Medical Insurance Security (FAMIS) enrollees.

SB 1250 Firearm rentals; criminal history record information check required, penalty. Provides that for the purposes of conducting a criminal history record information check for a firearm transfer, the term “rent” includes a temporary change in dominion or control of a firearm for use at or on the premises of a dealer’s business location in exchange for money or other consideration.

SB 1251 Virginia Retirement System; technical amendments.

SB 1252 Coal tax credits; sunset dates. Sunsets the Coal Employment and Production Incentive Tax Credit and Coalfield Employment Enhancement Tax Credit after tax year 2021 and prohibits the allocation of such credits on and after January 1, 2022.

SB 1254 Sports betting; clarifies certain procedures.Clarifies the types of events on which sports betting is allowed.

SB 1257 SOQ; school board to provide at least three specialized student support positions

SB 1258 Solar projects; erosion and sediment control. Requires any locality that does not operate a regulated MS4 and for which the Department did not administer a VSMP as of July 1, 2020.

SB 1261 Court of Appeals; expands jurisdiction, increases from 11 to 17 number of judges on Court.

SB 1262 Restricted permit; prepayment of fines and costs. Provides that any person who is otherwise eligible to receive a restricted permit to operate a motor vehicle shall not be required to pay in full his fines and costs before being issued such restricted permit.

SB 1275 Workers’ compensation; presumption of compensability for certain diseases. Provides that the occupational disease presumption for death caused by hypertension or heart disease will apply for salaried or volunteer emergency medical services personnel.

SB 1278 Charitable gaming; regulations of operators of Texas Hold’em poker games. Clarifies that the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (the Department) has specific authority to approve and regulate operators of both Texas Hold’em poker games and Texas Hold’em poker tournaments.

SB 1279 Veterans Services, Department of; initiatives to reduce unemployment among veterans.

SB 1282 Greenhouse gas emissions inventory; regulations. Directs the Department of Environmental Quality to conduct a statewide baseline and projection inventory of all greenhouse gas emissions and to update such inventory every four years.

SB 1284 Commonwealth Clean Energy Policy; established.

SB 1298 Tourism improvement districts; authorizes any locality to create. Authorizes any locality to create a local tourism improvement district plan, consisting of fees charged to businesses and used to fund tourism promotion activities and capital improvements.

SB 1300 Inmates; Board of Local and Regional Jails to review services provided during pregnancy, etc. Directs the Board of Local and Regional Jails (the Board), in consultation with a stakeholder work group, to (i) identify and analyze all obstetric and gynecological services and any other services provided by local and regional jails to inmates during pregnancy, pregnancy termination, labor and delivery, and postpartum recovery.

SB 1301 Correctional facilities; use of isolated confinement. Prohibits the use of isolated confinement in state correctional facilities and juvenile correctional centers, subject to certain exceptions.

SB 1302 Crisis Call Center Fund; created, consistency with federal guidelines.

SB 1305 Virginia Public Procurement Act; construction contracts, subcontractor workforce requirements. Requires all public bodies in a locality with a population in excess of 25,000 and covered institutions, defined in the bill, to include in every construction contract of more than $500,000 certain provisions related to the outsourcing of subcontracted work, which a contractor shall agree to during the performance of such contract.

SB 1307 School-based health services; Bd. of MAS to amend state plan for services to provide for payment. Directs the Board of Medical Assistance Services to amend the state plan for medical assistance services to provide for payment of medical assistance services delivered to Medicaid-eligible students when such services qualify for reimbursement by the Virginia Medicaid program.

SB 1310 Virginia Human Rights Act; application of laws applicable to employee safety and payment of wages. Provides that individuals who are engaged in providing domestic service are not excluded from employee protection laws and laws regarding the payment of wages.

SB 1313 Children’s Services Act; funds expended special education programs.

SB 1314 Education and Labor Market Alignment, Office of; established.

SB 1315 Criminal proceedings; consideration of mental condition & intellectual & developmental disabilities. Permits the admission of evidence offered by the defendant concerning a defendant’s mental condition at the time of an alleged offense, including expert testimony, is relevant, is not evidence concerning an ultimate issue of fact.

SB 1316 Child care providers; background checks, portability. Exempts prospective employees and volunteers of certain child care providers from statutory background check requirements where the individual completed a background check within the previous five years.

SB 1318 Interagency Environmental Justice Working Group; established, report.

SB 1321 Confirmatory adoption; expands the stepparent adoption provisions. Expands the stepparent adoption provisions to allow a person who is not the child’s stepparent but has a legitimate interest in the child to file a joint petition for adoption with the child’s birth parent or parent by adoption.

SB 1326 Local cigarette taxes; regional cigarette tax boards. States that it is the policy of the Commonwealth, where practical, to encourage local cigarette stamping and tax collection to be accomplished through regional cigarette tax boards, defined in the bill.

SB 1328 State-Funded Kinship Guardianship Assistance program; created.

SB 1333 Pharmaceutical processors; permits processors to produce & distribute cannabis products.

SB 1336 Restricted permits to operate a motor vehicle; ignition interlock systems. Provides that in any criminal case for reckless or improper driving where a defendant’s license to operate a motor vehicle, engine, or train is subject to revocation or suspension and the court orders a defendant, as a condition of probation or otherwise, to enter into and successfully complete an alcohol safety action program.

SB 1338 Telemedicine services; remote patient monitoring services. Requires the Board of Medical Assistance Services to include in the state plan for medical assistance services a provision for the payment of medical assistance for remote patient monitoring services provided via telemedicine.

SB 1339 Police and court records; expungement and sealing of records, Expungement Fee Fund created.

SB 1350 Transportation funding; statewide prioritization process, resiliency. Requires the Commonwealth Transportation Board to determine whether a project has been designed to be resilient when evaluating projects for the Six-Year Improvement Program and consider resiliency when establishing the Statewide Transportation Plan.

SB 1354 Chesapeake Bay; wastewater treatment, Enhanced Nutrient Removal Certainty Program established.

SB 1357 Through-year growth assessment system; Board of Education shall establish.

SB 1360 Virginia Human Rights Act; nondiscrimination in employment, sexual harassment. Clarifies, by defining sexual harassment and workplace harassment, what constitutes an unlawful employment practice if engaged in by an employer.

SB 1362 Employers; reporting outbreaks of COVID-19, effective clause. Requires that, upon determination that a worksite cluster of COVID-19 has occurred at a workplace with 50 or more employees, the Department of Health (the Department) shall make a report available to the public on a website maintained by the Department.

SB 1363 Local and Regional Jails, State Board of; membership, powers and duties, effective clause. Restores the authority of the State Board of Local and Regional Jails.

SB 1365 Data Governance and Analytics, Office of; created.

SB 1367 Line of Duty Act; Virginia licensed health practitioners required to conduct medical reviews.

SB 1375 Workers’ compensation; presumption of compensability for COVID-19. Establishes a presumption that COVID-19 causing the death or disability of firefighters, emergency medical services personnel, law-enforcement officers, and correctional officers is an occupational disease compensable under the Workers’ Compensation Act.

SB 1380 Electric utilities; electric school bus projects. Authorizes electric utilities to partner with school divisions to implement projects designed to encourage the proliferation of school buses that are fueled in whole or in part by electricity.

SB 1382 Firearms; purchase, etc., following conviction for assault and battery of a family member. Prohibits a person who has been convicted of assault and battery of a family or household member from purchasing, possessing, or transporting a firearm.

SB 1387 Students; eligibility for in-state tuition. Provides that students who meet the criteria to be deemed eligible for in-state tuition regardless of their citizenship or immigration status shall be afforded the same educational benefits, including financial assistance programs administered by the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia.

SB 1389 Real property; required disclosures for buyer to exercise due diligence, flood risk report. Requires the Real Estate Board (the Board) to make available on its website a flood risk information form, the details of which are outlined in the bill.

SB 1391 Pretrial data collection; VCSC to collect and disseminate on an annual basis. Requires the Virginia Criminal Sentencing Commission to collect and disseminate, on an annual basis, statewide and locality-level data related to adults charged with criminal offenses punishable by confinement in jail or a term of imprisonment.

SB 1392 Consumer Data Protection Act; establishes a framework for controlling and processing personal data. Establishes a framework for controlling and processing personal data in the Commonwealth.

SB 1395 Discrimination; prohibited in voting and elections administration, etc. Prohibits any voting qualification or any standard, practice, or procedure related to voting from being imposed or applied in a manner that results in the denial or abridgment of the right of any United States citizen to vote based on his race or color or membership in a language minority group.

SB 1396 Onsite Sewage Indemnification Fund; use of Fund for grants to certain property owners. Authorizes the State Board of Health to use the Onsite Sewage Indemnification Fund to provide grants and loans to property owners with income at or below 200 percent of the federal poverty guidelines to repair failing onsite sewage systems or install onsite sewage systems on properties that lack adequate sewage disposal.

SB 1398 Retail sales and transient occupancy taxes; room rentals. Provides that retail sales and hotel taxes on transient room rentals shall be computed on the basis of the total charges or the total price paid for the use or possession of the room.

SB 1401 Standards of Learning; reduces total number & type of required assessments to minimum requirements. Reduces the total number and type of required Standards of Learning assessments to the minimum requirements established by the federal Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, as amended.

SB 1402 Trout fishing in stocked waters; equalizes for residents and nonresidents requirements to fish.

SB 1403 Retail Sales and Use Tax; exemption for personal protective equipment.

SB 1405 Get Skilled, Get a Job, Give Back (G3) Fund and Program; established.

SB 1406 Marijuana; legalization of simple possession, penalties. Eliminates criminal penalties for simple possession of marijuana, modifies several other criminal penalties related to marijuana, and provides for an automatic expungement process for those convicted of certain marijuana-related crimes.

SB 1411 Peanuts; extends sunset date of excise tax on all peanuts grown in Virginia.

SB 1418 Commonwealth’s Development Opportunity Fund; grants, waiver or reduction of capital investment. Provides that, for grants from the Commonwealth’s Development Opportunity Fund, capital investment and local match requirements may be reduced or waived based on the creation of telework jobs that pay an average wage of at least 1.2 times the Virginia minimum wage.

SB 1423 Data centers; sales and use tax exemption, identifying a “distressed locality.”

SB 1425 Data centers; expands sales and use tax exemption. Provides that if a data center operator qualifies for the exemption in one locality and seeks to qualify in another, it shall be required to meet a reduced job creation requirement of 25 jobs for purposes of qualifying in the other locality.

SB 1428 Alcoholic beverage control; operation of government stores, sale of low alcohol beverage coolers. Prohibits the Board of Directors (the Board) of the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority from selling in government stores low alcohol beverage coolers not manufactured by licensed distillers.

SB 1429 Southwestern Va. Mental Health Institute; Governor to lease a portion of property to Smyth County.

SB 1436 Eligible Health Care Provider Reserve Directory; established.

SB 1438 Combined transient occupancy and food and beverage tax; technical amendments.

SB 1442 Public defender office; establishes an office for the County of Chesterfield.

SB 1443 Mandatory minimum sentences; elimination, modification of sentence to mandatory minimum term. Eliminates all mandatory minimum sentences of confinement from the Code of Virginia.

SB 1461 Bribery in correctional facilities; penalty. Provides that any person who (i) offers, confers, or agrees to confer upon another any pecuniary benefit as consideration for the recipient to act in the unlawful delivery of items or contraband to prisoners or (ii) receives any pecuniary benefit or other consideration to act in in the unlawful delivery of items or contraband to prisoners shall be guilty of bribery, punishable as a Class 4 felony.

SB 1462 Virginia Digital Equity Pilot Program and Fund; established, report, sunset date.

SB 1465 Illegal gambling; skill games, definitions, enforcement by localities and Attorney General. Provides that any person who conducts, finances, manages, supervises, directs, or owns a gambling device that is located in an unregulated location is subject to a civil penalty of up to $25,000.

SB 1469 Opioid Abatement Authority; established, Fund created, report, membership.

SB 1471 Alcoholic beverage control; local special events license, taxes and fees. Allows the Board of Directors of the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority to increase the frequency, duration, and designated area of events held under a local special events license upon the request of a locality after adoption of an ordinance allowing such increases.

Bills Passed

SB 1112 Research and development expenses; tax credit available against the bank franchise tax. Research and development tax credits. Provides that the research and development expenses tax credit and the major research and development expenses tax credit shall be available against the bank franchise tax for taxable years beginning on and after January 1, 2021. Under current law, the credits are available only against the individual and corporate income tax. This bill is identical to HB 1916.

SB 1130 Personal property tax; exemption for motor vehicle of a 100 percent disabled veteran. Personal property tax exemption; motor vehicle of a disabled veteran. Provides that one motor vehicle of a veteran who has a 100 percent service-connected, permanent, and total disability shall be exempt from local taxes. This bill is the enabling legislation for a constitutional amendment ratified by the voters of the Commonwealth at the November 2020 general election.

SB 1134 Refunding bonds; alters the principal and interest requirements. Refunding bonds; emergency. Alters the principal and interest requirements, maturity date, and allowable discount for previously issued refunding bonds. The bill contains an emergency clause and has an expiration date of June 30, 2023. This bill is identical to HB 2179.

SB 1145 Commonwealth of Virginia Higher Educational Institutions Bond Act of 2021; created. Bonds for public institutions of higher learning; emergency. Authorizes issuance of bonds in an amount up to $34,136,000 for revenue-producing capital projects at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. The bill contains an emergency clause and is identical to HB 2178.

SB 1146 Income tax, state; conformity with the Internal Revenue Code. Conformity of the Commonwealth’s taxation system with the Internal Revenue Code. Advances Virginia’s date of conformity with the Internal Revenue Code from December 31, 2019, to December 31, 2020. The bill deconforms from the suspension of the overall limitation on itemized deductions and the reduction in the medical expense deduction floor for taxable year 2017 and taxable years on and after January 1, 2019, and from the provisions of the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) related to the net operating loss limitation and carryback, a loss limitation applicable to taxpayers other than corporations, the limitation on business interest, and certain loan forgiveness and other business financial assistance. The bill provides an individual and corporate income tax deduction or subtraction, as applicable, of up to $100,000 for Rebuild Virginia grants and certain amounts related to Paycheck Protection Program loans.

SB 1254 Sports betting; clarifies certain procedures. Sports betting; technical amendments. Clarifies the types of events on which sports betting is allowed. The bill clarifies that a permit issued to a casino operator shall not count toward the maximum of 12 permits that the Director of the Virginia Lottery can issue and makes technical amendments related to the interaction between sports betting law and casino gaming law.

SB 1155 Capital outlay plan; repeals existing six-year capital outlay for projects to be funded. Capital outlay plan. Updates the six-year capital outlay plan for projects to be funded entirely or partially from general fund-supported resources. This bill is identical to HB 2177.

SB 1156 Technology Development Grant Fund; created. Technology Development Grant Fund created. Creates the Technology Development Grant Fund to make grant payments to a qualified technology company that makes a capital investment of at least $64 million at a facility in Fairfax County and creates at least 1,500 new full-time jobs at the facility. A qualified technology company would be eligible for an aggregate of $22.5 million in grants paid over four years if it meets performance parameters and complies with the terms of a memorandum of understanding agreed upon by the company, the Commonwealth, and the Virginia Economic Development Partnership Authority.

SB 1158 Port of Virginia tax credits; extends the sunset date. Port of Virginia tax credits; sunset. Extends the sunset for the international trade facility tax credit, the barge and rail usage tax credit, and the port volume increase tax credit from taxable years before January 1, 2022, to taxable years before January 1, 2025.

SB 1162 Tax credit; agricultural best management practices. Tax credit; agricultural best management practices. Creates an enhanced individual and corporate income tax credit for taxable years 2021 through 2024 for the implementation of certain agricultural best management practices by the taxpayer that are required as part of a certified resource management plan. The enhanced tax credit is equal to 50 percent of the first $100,000 expended in implementing certain agricultural best management practices, and each amount shall be consistent with the rate offered for each eligible practice under the Virginia Agricultural Best Management Practices Cost-Share Program. The bill retains a tax credit for 25 percent of expenses made for all other agricultural best management practices that are not eligible for the enhanced credit rate but increases the maximum amount of expenses to which one can apply the 25 percent credit from $70,000 to $100,000. A taxpayer may not claim credit for the same practice in the same management area under both the 25 percent and enhanced 75 percent credits. The aggregate amount of credit claimed per taxpayer shall not exceed $75,000 per year, and the aggregate amount of individual and corporate credits claimed among all taxpayers and credits shall not exceed $2 million per year. The bill sunsets the existing agricultural best management practices tax credits after taxable year 2024. This bill is identical to HB 1763.

SB 1163 Agricultural equipment; establishes a refundable individual and corporate income tax credit. Tax credits of agricultural equipment. Establishes for taxable years 2021 through 2025 a refundable individual and corporate income tax credit for 25 percent of expenditures, up to a maximum of $17,500, made for the purchase of conservation tillage and precision agriculture equipment certified by the Virginia Soil and Water Conservation Board as reducing soil compaction or improving precision of pesticide and fertilizer application or injection. The bill expires the existing individual and corporate income tax credits for conservation tillage equipment and purchase of advanced technology pesticide and fertilizer application equipment after taxable year 2020. Under current law, an individual or corporate taxpayer is allowed nonrefundable credits of up to $4,000 for conservation tillage equipment purchases and up to $3,750 for advanced technology pesticide and fertilizer application equipment purchases, which credits may be carried over for five years.

SB 1197 Virginia housing opportunity; tax credit established. Virginia housing opportunity tax credit. Establishes, starting in taxable year 2021, a Virginia housing opportunity tax credit, which is equal to the amount of the federal low-income housing tax credit allocated or allowed by the Virginia Housing Development Authority to a low-income building that is eligible for the federal credit. The credit would be nonrefundable and could be carried forward for up to five years.

SB 1201 Energy storage systems; definitions, tax exemption, revenue share for systems. Tax exemptions for energy storage systems. Declares that energy storage systems are included in the definition of certified pollution control equipment and facilities, making energy storage systems exempt from state and local taxation. The bill defines “energy storage system” as equipment, facilities, or devices that are capable of absorbing energy, storing it for a period of time, and redelivering that energy after it has been stored. The tax exemption applies only to certain projects with alternating current (AC) storage capacity of more than five megawatts and less than 150 megawatts. The bill also allows localities to assess a revenue share of up to $1400 per megawatt on energy storage systems. The bill provides that on July 1, 2026, and every five years thereafter, the maximum amount of the revenue share that a locality may impose on energy storage systems as well as certain solar energy projects shall be increased by 10 percent. No increase may be made to any revenue share imposed by a locality on a solar energy project or energy storage systems for which an application has been filed with the locality and such application has been approved prior to January 1, 2021. The bill defines energy storage systems as electric suppliers whose property shall be assessed by the State Corporation Commission. This bill is identical to HB 2006.

SB 1204 George Mason University; management agreement with the Commonwealth. George Mason University; management agreement. Provides a management agreement between the Commonwealth and George Mason University pursuant to the Restructured Higher Education Financial and Administrative Operations Act (§ 23.1-1000 et seq.). This bill is identical to HB 1986.

SB 1251 Virginia Retirement System; technical amendments. Virginia Retirement System; technical amendments. Makes technical amendments to provisions of the Code of Virginia relating to the Virginia Retirement System to reflect recent changes to federal law and conform terminology to federal law. This bill is identical to HB 2181.

SB 1252 Coal tax credits; sunset dates. Sunset of coal tax credits. Sunsets the Coal Employment and Production Incentive Tax Credit and Coalfield Employment Enhancement Tax Credit after tax year 2021 and prohibits the allocation of such credits on and after January 1, 2022. The bill provides that if Coal Employment and Production Incentive tax credits were earned prior to January 1, 2022, the credit holder may claim the credits in subsequent tax years pursuant to the applicable carryover requirements of current law; however, such credit holders would be limited to claiming $1 million in carryover credits per taxable year. The bill directs the Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy to convene a stakeholder process to report by December 1, 2021, on recommendations for how the Commonwealth can provide economic transition support to the coalfield region. This bill is identical to HB 1899.

SB 1326 Local cigarette taxes; regional cigarette tax boards. Local cigarette taxes; regional cigarette tax boards. States that it is the policy of the Commonwealth, where practical, to encourage local cigarette stamping and tax collection to be accomplished through regional cigarette tax boards, defined in the bill. The bill directs the Department of Taxation to establish a task force to develop methods for modernizing the local cigarette tax collection system and provide assistance as appropriate to localities seeking to form new regional cigarette tax boards.

SB 1398 Retail sales and transient occupancy taxes; room rentals. Retail sales and transient occupancy taxes on room rentals. Provides that retail sales and hotel taxes on transient room rentals shall be computed on the basis of the total charges or the total price paid for the use or possession of the room. For those cases in which a hotel or similar establishment contracts with an intermediary to facilitate the sale of the room and the intermediary charges the customer for the room and such facilitation efforts, the bill requires the intermediary to separately state the taxes on the bill or invoice provided to the customer and to collect the taxes based upon the total charges or the total price paid for the use or possession of the room. The bill requires an amount equal to the estimated state sales tax revenue generated from the tax on accommodations fees to be appropriated to the Virginia Tourism Authority each fiscal year to be used for promoting tourism.

SB 1403 Retail Sales and Use Tax; exemption for personal protective equipment. Sales tax; exemption for personal protective equipment; emergency. Establishes a retail sales and use tax exemption for personal protective equipment, defined in the bill. The exemption is available to any business that has in place a COVID-19 safety protocol that complies with the Emergency Temporary Standard promulgated by the Virginia Department of Labor and Industry and that meets other criteria. The exemption sunsets on the first day following the expiration of the last executive order issued by the Governor related to the COVID-19 pandemic and the termination of the COVID-19 Emergency Temporary Standard and any permanent COVID-19 regulations adopted by the Virginia Safety and Health Codes Board. The bill contains an emergency clause and is identical to HB 2185.

SB 1423 Data centers; sales and use tax exemption, identifying a “distressed locality.” Sales and use tax exemption for data centers. Reduces the job creation requirement to qualify for the sales and use tax exemption for data centers in a distressed locality from 25 to 15 jobs. Under current law, such data centers must create at least 25 new jobs. The bill also redefines what criteria are used to identify a distressed locality; under the bill, a locality qualifies as distressed if it has an unemployment rate that is greater than the statewide unemployment rate and a poverty rate that exceeds the statewide poverty rate. The bill requires all data centers claiming the exemption to report certain information to the Virginia Economic Development Partnership Authority (the Authority). The Department of Taxation, in collaboration with the Authority, would aggregate and publish such information biennially.

SB 1438 Combined transient occupancy and food and beverage tax; technical amendments. Combined transient occupancy and food and beverage tax; technical amendments. Provides that, for purposes of the combined transient occupancy and food and beverage tax that is currently authorized for Rappahannock and Madison Counties, the rate limit for such tax shall be the same as if the two taxes were imposed separately. The bill also eliminates the referendum requirement for the food and beverage component of the combined tax, consistent with Chapters 1214 and 1263 of the Acts of Assembly of 2020, which eliminated the referendum requirement for the food and beverage tax generally.

 

Commissions & Boards

Joint Subcommittee on the Future Competitiveness of Virginia, Higher Education

Source: Webpage

The Chairmen of the House Appropriations and Senate Finance Committees shall each appoint four members from their respective committees to a Joint Subcommittee on the Future Competitiveness of Virginia Higher Education to (a) review ways to maintain and improve the quality of higher education, while providing for broad access and affordability; (b) examine the impact of financial, demographic, and competitive changes on the sustainability of individual institutions and the system as a whole; (c) identify best practices to make the system more efficient, including shared services, institutional flexibility, and easily accessible academic pathways; (d) evaluate the use of distance education and online instruction across the Commonwealth and appropriate business models for such programs; (e) review current need-based financial aid programs and alternative models to best provide for student affordability and completion; (f) review the recommendations of the Joint Legislative Audit and Review Commission on the study of the cost efficiency of higher education institutions and make recommendations to their respective committees on the implementation of those recommendations; (g) study the effectiveness and value of transfer students; (h) evaluate the effectiveness of dual enrollment in reducing the cost of higher education; and (i) study the effectiveness of preparing teachers to enter the K-12 system.

Joint Legislative Audit & Review Commission

Source: Webpage

The Joint Legislative Audit and Review Commission (JLARC) is a key component of the legislative oversight function in Virginia. Legislative oversight is an important part of government accountability. It is how the Virginia General Assembly ensures that the funds it has appropriated are used effectively and efficiently by state and local agencies. Legislative oversight is also how the General Assembly assesses the performance of the agencies and programs it creates.

Auditor of Public Accounts (APA)

Source: Website

The Auditor of Public Accounts (APA) is the legislative external auditor for the Commonwealth of Virginia’s agencies, colleges, universities and municipal courts.

Governor’s Advisory Council on Revenue Estimates

Source: Webpage

Review revenue estimates with respect to economic assumptions and the general climate of the Commonwealth.

Joint Subcommittee on Local Government Fiscal Stress

Source: Webpage

The goals and objectives of the Joint Subcommittee will be to review (i) savings opportunities from increased regional cooperation and consolidation of services, including by jointly operating or merging small school divisions; (ii) local responsibilities for service delivery of state-mandated or high priority programs, (iii) causes of fiscal stress among local governments, (iv) potential financial incentives and other governmental reforms to encourage increased regional cooperation; and (v) the different taxing authorities of cities and counties.

Joint Subcommittee to Evaluate Tax Preferences

Source: Webpage

To oversee the evaluation of Virginia’s tax preferences, including but not limited to tax credits, deductions, subtractions, exemptions, and exclusions.

Board of Trustees Veterans Services Foundation

Source: Webpage

The Foundation shall (i) administer the Veterans Services Fund (the Fund), (ii) provide funding for veterans services and programs in the Commonwealth through the Fund, and (iii) raise revenue from all sources including private source fundraising to support the Fund.

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General Laws and Technology CommitteeGeneral Laws and Technology Committee

Meets on: Wednesday at 30 minutes after adjournment in Senate Room 3, The Capitol

Members:  George Barker (Chair)  –  John Bell –  Jennifer Boysko  – Siobhan Dunnavant  – Adam Ebbin – Ghazala Hashmi  – Jen Kiggans  – Mamie Locke  – Monty Mason  –  Jeremy McPike  –  Todd Pillion  –  Bryce Reeves  – Frank Ruff  – Richard Stuart  –  Jill Vogel

(8 Democrats and 7 Republicans)

Subcommittees: None

 

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Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”

  • SB1110–  Property; duties of real estate settlement agents.
  • SB 1127 Charitable gaming; conduct of instant bingo, network bingo, pull tabs, and seal cards.
  • SB1150– Department of Veterans Services; Military Spouse Liaison; position created. 
  • SB 1183Property Owners’ Association Act/Condominium Act; use of electronic means for meetings and voting. 
  • SB 1215Virginia Residential Landlord and Tenant Act; tenant remedies for exclusion from dwelling unit, interruption of services, or actions taken to make premises unsafe.
  • SB 1271Virginia Freedom of Information Act; meetings held through electronic communication means during a state of emergency.
  • SB 1279- Department of Veterans Services; initiatives to reduce unemployment among veterans; comprehensive transition program. 
  • SB 1287Charitable Gaming Board; regulations; electronic pull tabs.
  • SB 1296State Coordinator of Emergency Management; establishment of Emergency Management Equity Working Group. 
  • SB 1314Virginia Economic Development Partnership Authority; Office of Education and Labor Market Alignment established; workforce and higher education alignment.
  • SB 1327Housing Bill of Rights; housing protections; foreclosures; manufactured housing. 
  • SB 1343Virginia Freedom of Information Act; proprietary records and trade secrets; carbon sequestration agreements.
  • SB 1365- Data governance; Office of Data Governance and Analytics; Chief Data Officer; Virginia Data Commission; report.
  • SB 1389Virginia Residential Property Disclosure Act; required disclosures; repetitive risk loss structure; flood risk information form.
  • SB1392Consumer Data Protection Act.
  • SB1206Marijuana; legalization; retail sales; penalties.
  • SB1410Active military or a military spouse; prohibits discrimination in public accommodations, etc.
  • SB1418Grants from the Commonwealth’s Development Opportunity Fund; waiver or reduction of capital investment and local match requirement.
  • SB1429Disposition of property previously used by the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services as the Southwestern Virginia Mental Health Institute.
  • SB1458Secretary of Commerce and Trade; Identity Management Standards Advisory Council.
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General Laws and Technology Committee 2021 hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee: 1/13   1/20  1/27  2/2  2/10  2/17   2/24

When Virginia’s General Assembly first took up legislation billed as a major step toward giving regular people more control over their data in an increasingly online world, some of the first testimony lawmakers heard came from tech giants like Microsoft and Amazon.

Both companies said they were in full support of Virginia’s effort to become just the second state in America to pass its own data privacy bill, an early marker in a debate still unfolding in other states and at the national level.

Supporters of Virginia’s Consumer Data Protection Act, approved by the General Assembly this year and already signed by Gov. Ralph Northam, say the fact that Virginia was able to pass such significant legislation without a major fight is a testament to the quality of the bill, which lays out new consumer protections while largely shielding companies from a flood of data-related lawsuits.

Noting that an estimated 70 percent of internet traffic flows through servers in Virginia, Sen. Dave Marsden, D-Fairfax, said Virginia’s legislation could be “a good starting place for a national privacy bill.”

Virginia lawmakers ban police use of facial recognition
AP, Denise LavoieMarch 29, 2021 (Short)

Last month, Virginia lawmakers quietly passed one of the most restrictive bans in the country on the use of facial recognition technology.

The legislation, which won unusually broad bipartisan support, prohibits all local law enforcement agencies and campus police departments from purchasing or using facial recognition technology unless it is expressly authorized by the state legislature.

But now, some law enforcement officials are asking Gov. Ralph Northam to put the brakes on the legislation, arguing that it is overly broad and hasn’t been thoroughly vetted.

Virginia Senate bill demands Metro change station
Washington PostFebruary 23, 2021 (Short)

State Legislatures across the U.S. are making privacy a priority out of the gate in 2021. The number of states with proposed privacy legislation up for consideration continues to grow, including bills in Washington and Virginia that are already seeing movement.

While the track of the Washington Privacy Act has accrued quite the following, Senate Bill 1392 for Virginia’s Consumer Data Protection Act has begun gaining traction. On Jan. 27, 2021, the Virginia Senate Committee on General Laws and Technology voted 13–0 with one abstention in favor of moving the bill forward to the Senate Finance Committee for further consideration and debate.

“Mr. Chairman, it is time,” State Sen. David Marsden, D-Va., during the meeting. Marsden introduced the bill to the Senate Jan. 13. “It is time that we find a meaningful way of protecting the citizens of the Commonwealth of Virginia’s data. … Virginia is in a unique position to be a leader on this issue. There’s a huge amount of the data on the internet that flows through the commonwealth. Privacy is not a new issue.”

Top News

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Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”

  • SB1110–  Property; duties of real estate settlement agents.
  • SB 1127 Charitable gaming; conduct of instant bingo, network bingo, pull tabs, and seal cards.
  • SB1150– Department of Veterans Services; Military Spouse Liaison; position created. 
  • SB 1183Property Owners’ Association Act/Condominium Act; use of electronic means for meetings and voting. 
  • SB 1215Virginia Residential Landlord and Tenant Act; tenant remedies for exclusion from dwelling unit, interruption of services, or actions taken to make premises unsafe.
  • SB 1271Virginia Freedom of Information Act; meetings held through electronic communication means during a state of emergency.
  • SB 1279- Department of Veterans Services; initiatives to reduce unemployment among veterans; comprehensive transition program. 
  • SB 1287Charitable Gaming Board; regulations; electronic pull tabs.
  • SB 1296State Coordinator of Emergency Management; establishment of Emergency Management Equity Working Group. 
  • SB 1314Virginia Economic Development Partnership Authority; Office of Education and Labor Market Alignment established; workforce and higher education alignment.
  • SB 1327Housing Bill of Rights; housing protections; foreclosures; manufactured housing. 
  • SB 1343Virginia Freedom of Information Act; proprietary records and trade secrets; carbon sequestration agreements.
  • SB 1365- Data governance; Office of Data Governance and Analytics; Chief Data Officer; Virginia Data Commission; report.
  • SB 1389Virginia Residential Property Disclosure Act; required disclosures; repetitive risk loss structure; flood risk information form.
  • SB1392Consumer Data Protection Act.
  • SB1206Marijuana; legalization; retail sales; penalties.
  • SB1410Active military or a military spouse; prohibits discrimination in public accommodations, etc.
  • SB1418Grants from the Commonwealth’s Development Opportunity Fund; waiver or reduction of capital investment and local match requirement.
  • SB1429Disposition of property previously used by the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services as the Southwestern Virginia Mental Health Institute.
  • SB1458Secretary of Commerce and Trade; Identity Management Standards Advisory Council.
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General Laws and Technology Committee 2021 hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee: 1/13   1/20  1/27  2/2  2/10  2/17   2/24

When Virginia’s General Assembly first took up legislation billed as a major step toward giving regular people more control over their data in an increasingly online world, some of the first testimony lawmakers heard came from tech giants like Microsoft and Amazon.

Both companies said they were in full support of Virginia’s effort to become just the second state in America to pass its own data privacy bill, an early marker in a debate still unfolding in other states and at the national level.

Supporters of Virginia’s Consumer Data Protection Act, approved by the General Assembly this year and already signed by Gov. Ralph Northam, say the fact that Virginia was able to pass such significant legislation without a major fight is a testament to the quality of the bill, which lays out new consumer protections while largely shielding companies from a flood of data-related lawsuits.

Noting that an estimated 70 percent of internet traffic flows through servers in Virginia, Sen. Dave Marsden, D-Fairfax, said Virginia’s legislation could be “a good starting place for a national privacy bill.”

Virginia lawmakers ban police use of facial recognition
AP, Denise LavoieMarch 29, 2021 (Short)

Last month, Virginia lawmakers quietly passed one of the most restrictive bans in the country on the use of facial recognition technology.

The legislation, which won unusually broad bipartisan support, prohibits all local law enforcement agencies and campus police departments from purchasing or using facial recognition technology unless it is expressly authorized by the state legislature.

But now, some law enforcement officials are asking Gov. Ralph Northam to put the brakes on the legislation, arguing that it is overly broad and hasn’t been thoroughly vetted.

Virginia Senate bill demands Metro change station
Washington PostFebruary 23, 2021 (Short)

State Legislatures across the U.S. are making privacy a priority out of the gate in 2021. The number of states with proposed privacy legislation up for consideration continues to grow, including bills in Washington and Virginia that are already seeing movement.

While the track of the Washington Privacy Act has accrued quite the following, Senate Bill 1392 for Virginia’s Consumer Data Protection Act has begun gaining traction. On Jan. 27, 2021, the Virginia Senate Committee on General Laws and Technology voted 13–0 with one abstention in favor of moving the bill forward to the Senate Finance Committee for further consideration and debate.

“Mr. Chairman, it is time,” State Sen. David Marsden, D-Va., during the meeting. Marsden introduced the bill to the Senate Jan. 13. “It is time that we find a meaningful way of protecting the citizens of the Commonwealth of Virginia’s data. … Virginia is in a unique position to be a leader on this issue. There’s a huge amount of the data on the internet that flows through the commonwealth. Privacy is not a new issue.”

Summary

Meets on: Wednesday at 30 minutes after adjournment in Senate Room 3, The Capitol

Members:  George Barker (Chair)  –  John Bell –  Jennifer Boysko  – Siobhan Dunnavant  – Adam Ebbin – Ghazala Hashmi  – Jen Kiggans  – Mamie Locke  – Monty Mason  –  Jeremy McPike  –  Todd Pillion  –  Bryce Reeves  – Frank Ruff  – Richard Stuart  –  Jill Vogel

(8 Democrats and 7 Republicans)

Subcommittees: None

 

About

From Senate Rules: “A Committee on General Laws and Technology, 15 Senators, to consider matters concerning affirmation and bonds; the boundaries, jurisdiction and emblems of the Commonwealth; cemeteries; condominiums; consumer affairs; fire protection; gaming and wagering; housing; inter – or intra-government information technology applications and uses other than those proposed or used to support the operations of the General Assembly or the Senate; land offices; landlord and tenant; libraries; military and war emergency; nuisances; oaths; professions and occupations (except the health and legal professions); religious and charitable matters; state governmental reorganization; veterans’ affairs; warehouses; and matters not specifically referable to other Committees, including, but not limited to, matters relating to technology, engineering, or electronic research, development, policy, standards, measurements, or definitions, or the scientific, technical, or technological requirements thereof, except for those affecting the operations of the General Assembly or the Senate.”.

Web

VA Legislative Information Systems (LIS)

Bills

Bills passed

  • 1110–  Property; duties of real estate settlement agents. Provides that the State Corporation Commission may share information collected from a settlement agent or agency regarding any errors and omissions or malpractice insurance policy or surety bond with any party to the real estate transaction in connection with the actions of such agent or agency arising out of a settlement.
  • SB 1127 Charitable gaming; conduct of instant bingo, network bingo, pull tabs, and seal cards.
  • SB1150– Department of Veterans Services; Military Spouse Liaison; position created. Establishes the position of Military Spouse Liaison (the Liaison) in the Department of Veterans Services to conduct outreach and advocate on behalf of military spouses in the Commonwealth. The bill directs the Liaison to report by December 1 of each year through the Commissioner of the Department of Veterans Services to the Secretary of Veterans and Defense Affairs, the Governor, and the General Assembly on the work of the Liaison and any legislative recommendations. The provisions of the bill are contingent on funding in a general appropriation act.
  • SB 1183Property Owners’ Association Act/Condominium Act; use of electronic means for meetings and voting. Allows meetings of property owners’ associations, boards of directors, unit owners’ associations, executive boards, and committees to be held entirely or partially by electronic means, provided that the board of directors, unit owners’ association, or executive board, as applicable, has adopted guidelines for the use of electronic means for such meetings. The bill requires that such guidelines ensure that persons accessing such meetings are authorized to do so and that persons entitled to participate in such meetings have an opportunity to do so. The bill grants authority for determining whether any such meeting may be held entirely or partially by electronic means with the board of directors or executive board, as applicable. Under current law, if a meeting of a board of directors or executive board is conducted by telephone conference or video conference, at least two members of the board of directors or executive board, as applicable, are required to be physically present at the meeting place included in the meeting notice. The bill amends the definition of “electronic means” to provide that a meeting conducted by electronic means includes a meeting conducted via teleconference, videoconference, Internet exchange, or other electronic methods. The bill allows members of property owners’ associations or unit owners’ associations to vote at meetings of such associations by absentee ballot, and allows such members to vote in person, by proxy, or by absentee ballot by electronic means, provided that the board of directors or executive board, as applicable, has adopted guidelines for such voting. Finally, the bill provides that if a vote, consent, or approval required to be obtained by secret ballot is accomplished through electronic means, the electronic means shall protect the identity of the voter, and provides that if the electronic means cannot protect the identity of the voter, another means of voting shall be used. This bill is identical to HB 1816.
  • SB 1215Virginia Residential Landlord and Tenant Act; tenant remedies for exclusion from dwelling unit, interruption of services, or actions taken to make premises unsafe. Provides that a general district court shall enter an order upon petition by a tenant that his landlord has (i) removed or excluded the tenant from the dwelling unit unlawfully, (ii) interrupted or caused the interruption of an essential service to the tenant, or (iii) taken action to make the premises unsafe for habitation. The bill allows entry of a preliminary order ex parte to require the landlord to allow the tenant to recover possession of the dwelling unit, resume any such interrupted essential service, or fix any willful actions taken by the landlord or his agent to make the premises unsafe for habitation if there is good cause to do so and the tenant made reasonable efforts to notify the landlord of the hearing. The bill requires that any ex parte order entered shall further indicate a date for a full hearing on the petition that is no later than 10 days from the initial hearing date. Finally, the bill provides that, at a full hearing on such petition and upon proper evidence presented, the tenant shall recover actual damages, the greater of $5,000 or four months’ rent, and reasonable attorney fees. This bill is identical to HB 1900.
  • SB 1271Virginia Freedom of Information Act; meetings held through electronic communication means during a state of emergency. Allows a public body, or a joint meeting thereof, to meet by electronic communication means without a quorum of the public body physically assembled at one location when a locality in which the public body is located has declared a local state of emergency, provided that (i) the catastrophic nature of the declared emergency makes it impracticable or unsafe to assemble a quorum in a single location and (ii) the purpose of the meeting is to provide for the continuity of operations of the public body or the discharge of its lawful purposes, duties, and responsibilities. Under current law, public bodies may only meet in such manner when the Governor has declared a state of emergency, and only for the purpose of addressing the emergency. Finally, the bill requires public bodies meeting through electronic communication means during a local or state declaration of a state of emergency to (a) make arrangements for public access to such meeting through electronic communication means, including videoconferencing if already used by the public body, and (b) provide the public with the opportunity to comment at such meetings when public comment is customarily received.
  • SB 1279- Department of Veterans Services; initiatives to reduce unemployment among veterans; comprehensive transition program. Requires the Department of Veterans Services to develop a comprehensive program to assist military service members, veterans, and their spouses in making a successful transition from military to civilian life in Virginia. The program promotes strategies and services for connecting transitioning service members, veterans, and spouses to local, regional, state, and federal employment resources in Virginia, including (i) skills and workforce assessments and (ii) internship and apprenticeship programs. The bill also requires that the program prioritize assistance to military service members, veterans, and their spouses who have not sought services from or do not qualify for services under certain federal programs administered by the Commonwealth.
  • SB 1287Charitable Gaming Board; regulations; electronic pull tabs. Prohibits the Charitable Gaming Board from promulgating regulations that prohibit the use of multiple video monitors or touchscreens on an electronic pull tab device and provides that the use of electronic pull tab devices utilizing multiple video monitors or touchscreens shall be limited to one player at a time. This bill is identical to HB 1943.
  • SB 1296State Coordinator of Emergency Management; establishment of Emergency Management Equity Working Group. Provides for the State Coordinator of Emergency Management to establish an Emergency Management Equity Working Group to ensure that emergency management programs and plans provide support to at-risk individuals and populations disproportionately impacted by disasters.
  • SB 1314Virginia Economic Development Partnership Authority; Office of Education and Labor Market Alignment established; workforce and higher education alignment. Directs the Virginia Economic Development Partnership Authority to establish an Office of Education and Labor Market Alignment (the Office) to coordinate data analysis on workforce and higher education alignment and translate data to partners. The Office shall provide a unified, consistent source of information or analysis for policy development and implementation related to talent development and shall partner with the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia, institutions of higher education, the Virginia Department of Education, the Virginia Employment Commission, GO Virginia, and other relevant entities to offer resources and expertise related to education and labor market alignment.
  • SB 1327Housing Bill of Rights; housing protections; foreclosures; manufactured housing. Provides for various protections for homeowners and tenants of manufactured home parks, including (i) restricting the circumstances under which a court may order a person’s primary residence to be sold to enforce a judgment lien; (ii) requiring localities to incorporate into their comprehensive plans strategies to promote manufactured housing as a source of affordable housing; (iii) requiring the Director of Housing and Community Development to develop a statement of tenant rights and responsibilities explaining in plain language the rights and responsibilities of tenants under the Virginia Manufactured Home Lot Rental Act; (iv) in the case of a deed of trust conveying owner-occupied residential real estate, prohibiting a trustee of such deed of trust from selling such property in a foreclosure sale without receiving an affidavit signed by the party that provided notice of the sale to the owner confirming that such notice was sent to the owner, with a copy of such notice attached to the affidavit; (v) in the case of a deed of trust conveying owner-occupied residential real estate, increasing the notice period for a foreclosure sale from 14 to 60 days and requiring such notice to provide the grantor with information regarding housing counseling; and (vi) requiring the landlord of a manufactured home park to provide tenants who own their manufactured home information about housing assistance and legal aid organizations. The bill also requires the Department of Housing and Community Development to convene a stakeholder group to assist in the development of the statement of tenant rights and responsibilities. The provisions of the bill related to the specifics of the notice that is required before a trustee can sell a property in a foreclosure sale have a delayed effective date of October 1, 2021. This bill is identical to HB 2175.
  • SB 1343Virginia Freedom of Information Act; proprietary records and trade secrets; carbon sequestration agreements. Excludes from the mandatory disclosure provisions of the Virginia Freedom of Information Act proprietary information, voluntarily provided by a private business under a promise of confidentiality from a public body, used by the public body for a carbon sequestration agreement. The bill requires the private business to specify the records for which protection is sought before submitting them to the public body and to state the reasons why protection is necessary.
  • SB 1365- Data governance; Office of Data Governance and Analytics; Chief Data Officer; Virginia Data Commission; report. Creates the Office of Data Governance (the Office) in the Office of the Secretary of Administration, to be directed by the existing Chief Data Officer of the Commonwealth. The Office is charged with overseeing general data governance in the Commonwealth, as well as developing and managing the Commonwealth Data Trust, a multi-stakeholder data exchange and analytics platform. A multi-level governance structure is established to govern the Trust. The bill also establishes the advisory Virginia Data Commission to advise the Office on issues relating to data sharing.
  • SB 1389Virginia Residential Property Disclosure Act; required disclosures; repetitive risk loss structure; flood risk information form. Requires the Real Estate Board to make available on its website a flood risk information form, the details of which are outlined in the bill. The bill also provides that an owner of residential real property located in the Commonwealth who has actual knowledge that the dwelling unit is a repetitive risk loss structure, as defined in the bill, shall disclose such fact to the purchaser on a form provided by the Real Estate Board on its website. The bill has a delayed effective date of January 1, 2022. This bill is identical to HB 2320.
  • SB1392Consumer Data Protection Act. Establishes a framework for controlling and processing personal data in the Commonwealth. The bill applies to all persons that conduct business in the Commonwealth and either (i) control or process personal data of at least 100,000 consumers or (ii) derive over 50 percent of gross revenue from the sale of personal data and control or process personal data of at least 25,000 consumers. The bill outlines responsibilities and privacy protection standards for data controllers and processors. The bill does not apply to state or local governmental entities and contains exceptions for certain types of data and information governed by federal law. The bill grants consumer rights to access, correct, delete, obtain a copy of personal data, and to opt out of the processing of personal data for the purposes of targeted advertising. The bill provides that the Attorney General has exclusive authority to enforce violations of the law, and the Consumer Privacy Fund is created to support this effort. The bill directs the Joint Commission on Technology and Science to establish a work group to review the provisions of this act and issues related to its implementation, and to report on its findings by November 1, 2021. The bill has a delayed effective date of January 1, 2023. This bill is identical to HB 2307.
  • SB1206Marijuana; legalization; retail sales; penalties. Eliminates criminal penalties for simple possession of up to one ounce of marijuana by persons 21 years of age or older, modifies several other criminal penalties related to marijuana, and imposes limits on dissemination of criminal history record information related to certain marijuana offenses. The bill creates the Virginia Cannabis Control Authority (the Authority) and establishes a regulatory and licensing structure for the cultivation, manufacture, wholesale, and retail sale of retail marijuana and retail marijuana products, to be administered by the Authority. The bill contains social equity provisions that, among other things, provide support and resources to persons and communities that have been historically and disproportionately affected by drug enforcement. The bill has staggered effective dates and numerous provisions of the bill are subject to reenactment by the 2022 Session of the General Assembly. This bill incorporates SB 1243 and is identical to HB 2312.
  • SB1410Active military or a military spouse; prohibits discrimination in public accommodations, etc. Prohibits discrimination in public accommodations, employment, and housing on the basis of a person’s military status, defined as a member of the uniformed services of the United States or a reserve component thereof or a spouse or other dependent of the same. The bill also prohibits terms in a rental agreement in which the tenant agrees to waive remedies or rights under the federal Servicemembers Civil Relief Act prior to the occurrence of a dispute between the landlord and the tenant. This bill is identical to HB2161.
  • SB1418Grants from the Commonwealth’s Development Opportunity Fund; waiver or reduction of capital investment and local match requirement. Provides that, for grants from the Commonwealth’s Development Opportunity Fund, capital investment and local match requirements may be reduced or waived based on the creation of telework jobs that pay an average wage of at least 1.2 times the Virginia minimum wage.
  • SB1429Disposition of property previously used by the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services as the Southwestern Virginia Mental Health Institute. Authorizes the Governor to lease a portion of property previously used by the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services as the Southwestern Virginia Mental Health Institute to Smyth County in as-is condition for a term of three years upon such terms and conditions as may be agreed by the parties, including, without limitation, Smyth County’s responsibility for building or infrastructure refurbishments and operational expenses. The bill also corrects tax map references from a 2019 conveyance of property in Smyth County. This bill is identical to HB 2098.
  • SB1458Secretary of Commerce and Trade; Identity Management Standards Advisory Council. Transfers the management of the Identity Management Standards Advisory Council from the Secretary of Administration to the Secretary of Commerce and Trade. The bill also adds to the membership of the Advisory Council a representative from the Commonwealth of Virginia Innovation Partnership Authority and a representative of Virginia consumers. The bill also allows the Commissioner of the Department of Motor Vehicles to serve ex officio with voting privileges.

Commissions & Boards

Commission on Civic Education

Source: Webpage

The purposes of the Commission are to (i) educate students on the importance of citizen involvement in a representative democracy, (ii) promote the study of state and local government among the Commonwealth’s citizenry, and (iii) enhance communication and collaboration among organizations in the Commonwealth that conduct civics education.

Virginia Freedom of Information Advisory Council

Source: Website

The Virginia Freedom of Information Advisory Council, a state agency, is an office with the expertise to help resolve disputes over Freedom of Information issues. The FOIA Council answers questions from private citizens, state and local public officials, and the media about access to public records and meetings. Under Virginia law, the presumption is that all documents in the possession of public officials and all meetings of state and local public bodies are open to citizens of the Commonwealth. Of course, there are exceptions and these exceptions can lead to good faith disagreements between citizens or media and public officials.

Joint Reapportionment Committee

Supervise activities required for the tabulation of population for the census and the timely reception of precinct population data for reapportionment.

Joint Commission on Technology and Science

Source: Webpage

The Joint Commission on Technology and Science (JCOTS), a permanent legislative agency established in 1997, studies all aspects of technology and science, and strives to encourage, promote, and assist in the development of sound technology and science policy in the Commonwealth.

Aerospace Advisory Council

Source: Webpage

To advise the Governor, the Joint Commission on Technology and Science, and the Secretaries of Commerce and Trade, Technology, and Education on policy and funding priorities with respect to aerospace economic development, workforce training, educational programs, and educational curriculum, and to promote the aerospace and space exploration industry in the Commonwealth.

Broadband Advisory Council

Source: Webpage

The purpose of the Council shall be to advise the Governor on policy and funding priorities to expedite deployment and reduce the cost of broadband access in the Commonwealth

Clean Energy Advisory Board

Source: Website

The Clean Energy Advisory Board (the Board) is established as an advisory board in the executive branch of state government. The purpose of the Board is to establish a pilot program for disbursing loans or rebates for the installation of solar energy infrastructure in low-income and moderate-income households through the “Low-to-Moderate Income Solar Loan and Rebate Fund” (the Fund).

Modeling and Simulation Advisory Council

Source: Webpage

To advise the Governor on policy and funding priorities to promote the modeling and simulation industry in the Commonwealth

Online Virginia Network Authority

Source: Webpage

The Online Virginia Network Authority (the Authority) is established as a political subdivision of the Commonwealth for the purpose of providing a means for individuals to earn degrees and postsecondary education credentials by improving the quality of and expanding access to online degree and credential programs that are beneficial to citizens, public institutions of higher education, and employers in the Commonwealth.

Research & Technology Investment Advisory Committee

Source: Webpage

The Advisory Committee shall be administered by and advise the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Investment Authority.

Qualifications: Ten (10) members as follows: the four vice-provosts of research at major state institutions of higher education from the state institutions of higher education not represented on the Authority, the president and chief executive officer of the Virginia Economic Development Partnership, and five citizens members appointed by the Governor (1), Speaker of the House (2), and the Senate Committee on Rules (2).

Solar Energy Development and Energy Storage Authority

Source: Webpage

Virginia Solar Energy Development and Energy Development Authority is created as a body corporate and a political subdivision of the Commonwealth and as such shall have, and is vested with, all of the politic and corporate powers as are set forth in this chapter. The Authority is established for the purposes of facilitating, coordinating, and supporting the development, either by the Authority or by other qualified entities, of the solar energy industry and solar energy projects by developing programs that increase the availability of financing for solar energy projects, facilitate the increase of solar energy generation systems on public and private sector facilities in the Commonwealth, promote the growth of the Virginia solar industry, and provide a hub for collaboration between entities, both public and private, to partner on solar energy projects. The Authority may also consult with research institutions, businesses, nonprofit organizations, and stakeholders as the Authority deems appropriate.

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Judiciary CommitteesJudiciary Committee

Meets at: Wednesday at Monday, 8:00 a.m. and Wednesday, 30 minutes after adjournment in Senate Room A, Pocahontas Building

Members: John Edwards (Chair) – Jennifer Boysko – Ben Chafin  – Creigh Deeds – Louise Lucas – Jennifer McClellanRyan McDougle – Joe Morrissey –Tommy Norment – Mark Obenshain – Chap Petersen –Dick Saslaw –Bill Stanley – Richard Stuart – Scott Surovell 

(9 Democrats and 6 Republicans)

Subcommittees:

  • Civil Law
  • Criminal Law

 

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Judiciary bills passed by the General Assembly
Virginia Legislative Information System

Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”)

  • SB 1108: General district courts; jurisdictional limits
  • SB 1113: Communicating threats of death or bodily injury to a person with intent to intimidate; penalty
  • SB 1119: Law-enforcement agencies; body-worn camera systems
  • SB 1122: Habitual offenders; repeals remaining provisions of Habitual Offender Act
  • SB 1138: Sexually transmitted infections; infected sexual battery, penalty
  • SB 1142: Marriage; persons who may celebrate rites, authorizes current members of the General Assembly
  • SB 1165: Death penalty; abolition of current penalty
  • SB 1168: “Abused or neglected child;” definition
  • SB 1181: Special immigrant juvenile status; jurisdiction
  • SB 1184: Standby guardianship; triggering event
  • SB 1209: Subcontractor’s employees; liability of general contractor for wages
  • SB 1213: Restricted licenses; DMV authorized to issue
  • SB 1234: Virginia State Bar examination; foreign applicants, evidence required
  • SB 1241: Personal injury claim; disclosure of insurance policy limits
  • SB 1242: Personal appearance by two-way electronic video and audio communication; entry of plea
  • SB 1248: Juveniles; competency evaluation, receipt of court order
  • SB 1256: Criminal Justice Services Board and Committee on Training; membership
  • SB 1261: Court of Appeals; expands jurisdiction, increases from 11 to 17 number of judges on Court
  • SB 1262: Restricted permit; prepayment of fines and costs
  • SB 1266: Admission to bail; rebuttable presumptions against bail
  • SB 1272: Unrestorably incompetent defendant; disposition, capital murder charge, inpatient custody
  • SB 1315: Criminal proceedings; consideration of mental condition & intellectual & developmental disabilities
  • SB 1316: Child care providers; background checks, portability
  • SB 1325: Visitation; petition of grandparent
  • SB 1336: Ignition interlock systems; restricted permits to operate a motor vehicle
  • SB 1339: Criminal records; sealing of records, Sealing Fee Fund created, penalties, report
  • SB 1381: Weapons; possessing or transporting within Capitol Square, etc
  • SB 1391: Pretrial data collection; VCSC to collect and disseminate on an annual basis
  • SB 1400: Tazewell County; quitclaim and conveyance of easement by Board of Wildlife Resources
  • SB 1415: Protective orders; violations of preliminary child protective order, changes punishment, etc
  • SB 1426: Orders of restitution; docketed on behalf of victim, enforcement
  • SB 1431: Unrestorably incompetent defendant; competency report
  • SB 1442: Public defender office; establishes an office for the County of Chesterfield
  • SB 1456: Juveniles; eligibility for commitment to the Department of Juvenile Justice
  • SB 1461: Bribery in correctional facilities; penalty
  • SB 1468: Victims of crime; certifications for victims of qualifying criminal activity
  • SB 1475: Search warrants; date and time of issuance, exceptions
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Judiciary 2021 Hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee: 1/18.1 1/18.2  1/18.3 1/20 1/25 1/27 2/1 2/3 2/9 2/10 2/15 2/17 2/22.1 2/22.2

Subcommittees:
Civil Law: 2/1 2/16
Criminal Law: 1/29

Virginia Senate Committee Kills Cyberflashing Bill
Brad KutnerFebruary 18, 2021 (Medium)

RICHMOND, Va. (CN) — Virginia’s Senate nixed a bill aiming to make unsolicited pictures of genitals or sex acts illegal after citing First Amendment concerns in a hearing Thursday.

“Sending an obscene picture should require consent from the recipient,” Delegate Kelly Convirs-Fowler argued regarding her bill, which sailed through the state’s House with unanimous consent.

“Sending one without consent should be the equivalent of cyberflashing,” the Virginia Beach Democrat said.

Convirs-Fowler defended the effort during a hearing of the state Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, saying the bill came from constituents who had been victimized by unwanted sexual photos sent via email, text or even during video-streamed events.

McClellan’s bill was met with debate from other lawmakers in the Senate Judiciary committee, such as Sen. Chap Petersen, D-Fairfax, over the bill’s language. McClellan asked Petersen if he wanted to add an amendment. He said he didn’t.

“I just want this bill to go away,” Petersen said.

Petersen questioned if his wife asking men “to move the furniture for her” constituted sexual harassment. Multiple lawmakers said the bill’s language was too broad.

Law360's Tort Report: Med Mal Damages Bill Fails In Virginia
Law360, Y. Peter KangMarch 9, 2021 (Medium)

A bid to overturn Virginia’s cap on medical malpractice damages ended last month when the state’s General Assembly adjourned its legislative session without taking action on a bill that was being supported by an attorney best known for representing Paula Jones in her sexual harassment suit against President Bill Clinton.

S.B. 1107, which would have eliminated the current $2.45 million total damages limit for medical malpractice payouts, didn’t make it out of the Senate Judiciary Committee before the legislative session ended on Feb. 11.

Washington, D.C.-based attorney Joe Cammarata had garnered the support of state Sen. Bill Stanley, a Republican, to move the legislation forward, but to no avail. Cammarata, a partner with personal injury firm Chaikin Sherman Cammarata & Siegel PC, served as one of Jones’ attorneys in her suit against Clinton in the late 1990s, a case that ultimately ended in an $850,000 settlement.

More rights for Va. disabled and domestic workers
Fauquier Now, David TranMarch 5, 2021 (Medium)

The two bills amending the Human Rights Act that lawmakers could not advance would have strengthened current workplace sexual harassment laws.

Del. Vivian E. Watts (D-Fairfax) introduced HB 2155 to expand and clarify the definition of workplace harassment and sexual harassment. The bill passed the House but died in the Senate Judiciary Committee by a vote of 6-7. It was the delegate’s second attempt to pass such protections.

The Senate companion bill, SB 1360, reported out of the Senate Judiciary committee, but was sent back and never picked back up. Patroned by Sen. McClellan, the legislation died over concerns on the bill’s absence of employers’ liabilities, especially for small businesses.

Top News

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Judiciary bills passed by the General Assembly
Virginia Legislative Information System

Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”)

  • SB 1108: General district courts; jurisdictional limits
  • SB 1113: Communicating threats of death or bodily injury to a person with intent to intimidate; penalty
  • SB 1119: Law-enforcement agencies; body-worn camera systems
  • SB 1122: Habitual offenders; repeals remaining provisions of Habitual Offender Act
  • SB 1138: Sexually transmitted infections; infected sexual battery, penalty
  • SB 1142: Marriage; persons who may celebrate rites, authorizes current members of the General Assembly
  • SB 1165: Death penalty; abolition of current penalty
  • SB 1168: “Abused or neglected child;” definition
  • SB 1181: Special immigrant juvenile status; jurisdiction
  • SB 1184: Standby guardianship; triggering event
  • SB 1209: Subcontractor’s employees; liability of general contractor for wages
  • SB 1213: Restricted licenses; DMV authorized to issue
  • SB 1234: Virginia State Bar examination; foreign applicants, evidence required
  • SB 1241: Personal injury claim; disclosure of insurance policy limits
  • SB 1242: Personal appearance by two-way electronic video and audio communication; entry of plea
  • SB 1248: Juveniles; competency evaluation, receipt of court order
  • SB 1256: Criminal Justice Services Board and Committee on Training; membership
  • SB 1261: Court of Appeals; expands jurisdiction, increases from 11 to 17 number of judges on Court
  • SB 1262: Restricted permit; prepayment of fines and costs
  • SB 1266: Admission to bail; rebuttable presumptions against bail
  • SB 1272: Unrestorably incompetent defendant; disposition, capital murder charge, inpatient custody
  • SB 1315: Criminal proceedings; consideration of mental condition & intellectual & developmental disabilities
  • SB 1316: Child care providers; background checks, portability
  • SB 1325: Visitation; petition of grandparent
  • SB 1336: Ignition interlock systems; restricted permits to operate a motor vehicle
  • SB 1339: Criminal records; sealing of records, Sealing Fee Fund created, penalties, report
  • SB 1381: Weapons; possessing or transporting within Capitol Square, etc
  • SB 1391: Pretrial data collection; VCSC to collect and disseminate on an annual basis
  • SB 1400: Tazewell County; quitclaim and conveyance of easement by Board of Wildlife Resources
  • SB 1415: Protective orders; violations of preliminary child protective order, changes punishment, etc
  • SB 1426: Orders of restitution; docketed on behalf of victim, enforcement
  • SB 1431: Unrestorably incompetent defendant; competency report
  • SB 1442: Public defender office; establishes an office for the County of Chesterfield
  • SB 1456: Juveniles; eligibility for commitment to the Department of Juvenile Justice
  • SB 1461: Bribery in correctional facilities; penalty
  • SB 1468: Victims of crime; certifications for victims of qualifying criminal activity
  • SB 1475: Search warrants; date and time of issuance, exceptions
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Judiciary 2021 Hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee: 1/18.1 1/18.2  1/18.3 1/20 1/25 1/27 2/1 2/3 2/9 2/10 2/15 2/17 2/22.1 2/22.2

Subcommittees:
Civil Law: 2/1 2/16
Criminal Law: 1/29

Virginia Senate Committee Kills Cyberflashing Bill
Brad KutnerFebruary 18, 2021 (Medium)

RICHMOND, Va. (CN) — Virginia’s Senate nixed a bill aiming to make unsolicited pictures of genitals or sex acts illegal after citing First Amendment concerns in a hearing Thursday.

“Sending an obscene picture should require consent from the recipient,” Delegate Kelly Convirs-Fowler argued regarding her bill, which sailed through the state’s House with unanimous consent.

“Sending one without consent should be the equivalent of cyberflashing,” the Virginia Beach Democrat said.

Convirs-Fowler defended the effort during a hearing of the state Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, saying the bill came from constituents who had been victimized by unwanted sexual photos sent via email, text or even during video-streamed events.

McClellan’s bill was met with debate from other lawmakers in the Senate Judiciary committee, such as Sen. Chap Petersen, D-Fairfax, over the bill’s language. McClellan asked Petersen if he wanted to add an amendment. He said he didn’t.

“I just want this bill to go away,” Petersen said.

Petersen questioned if his wife asking men “to move the furniture for her” constituted sexual harassment. Multiple lawmakers said the bill’s language was too broad.

Law360’s Tort Report: Med Mal Damages Bill Fails In Virginia
Law360, Y. Peter KangMarch 9, 2021 (Medium)

A bid to overturn Virginia’s cap on medical malpractice damages ended last month when the state’s General Assembly adjourned its legislative session without taking action on a bill that was being supported by an attorney best known for representing Paula Jones in her sexual harassment suit against President Bill Clinton.

S.B. 1107, which would have eliminated the current $2.45 million total damages limit for medical malpractice payouts, didn’t make it out of the Senate Judiciary Committee before the legislative session ended on Feb. 11.

Washington, D.C.-based attorney Joe Cammarata had garnered the support of state Sen. Bill Stanley, a Republican, to move the legislation forward, but to no avail. Cammarata, a partner with personal injury firm Chaikin Sherman Cammarata & Siegel PC, served as one of Jones’ attorneys in her suit against Clinton in the late 1990s, a case that ultimately ended in an $850,000 settlement.

More rights for Va. disabled and domestic workers
Fauquier Now, David TranMarch 5, 2021 (Medium)

The two bills amending the Human Rights Act that lawmakers could not advance would have strengthened current workplace sexual harassment laws.

Del. Vivian E. Watts (D-Fairfax) introduced HB 2155 to expand and clarify the definition of workplace harassment and sexual harassment. The bill passed the House but died in the Senate Judiciary Committee by a vote of 6-7. It was the delegate’s second attempt to pass such protections.

The Senate companion bill, SB 1360, reported out of the Senate Judiciary committee, but was sent back and never picked back up. Patroned by Sen. McClellan, the legislation died over concerns on the bill’s absence of employers’ liabilities, especially for small businesses.

Summary

Meets at: Wednesday at Monday, 8:00 a.m. and Wednesday, 30 minutes after adjournment in Senate Room A, Pocahontas Building

Members: John Edwards (Chair) – Jennifer Boysko – Ben Chafin  – Creigh Deeds – Louise Lucas – Jennifer McClellanRyan McDougle – Joe Morrissey –Tommy Norment – Mark Obenshain – Chap Petersen –Dick Saslaw –Bill Stanley – Richard Stuart – Scott Surovell 

(9 Democrats and 6 Republicans)

Subcommittees:

  • Civil Law
  • Criminal Law

 

About

From Senate Rules: A Committee for Courts of Justice (Note: The Courts of Justice Committee name has been changed to “Judiciary Committee”) 15 Senators, to consider matters relating to the Courts of the Commonwealth and the Justices and Judges thereof, including the nominations of such Justices and Judges where provided by the Constitution and statutes of Virginia; and all matters concerning the criminal laws of the Commonwealth; together with all matters concerning contracts, domestic relations, eminent domain, fiduciaries, firearms, garnishments, homestead and all other exemptions, immigration (with the exception of matters relating to the powers of the Governor or education), magistrates, mechanics’ and other liens, notaries public and out-of-state commissioners, property and conveyances (except landlord and tenant and condominium matters), wills and decedents’ estates.

It shall report to the Senate the names of such persons as it shall find qualified for election as a Justice or Judge of the Commonwealth. Senators, all or part of whose Senate Districts are within the Circuit or District for which a Judge is to be elected, shall nominate a qualified person for such election by affirmation of a majority of such Senators on a form provided by the Clerk of the Senate. If such Senators are unable to agree on a nominee, a Senator shall only nominate a person deemed qualified by the Committee for Courts of Justice for any judicial position.

Whenever a vacancy in the office of a justice of the Supreme Court or judge of the Court of Appeals is announced, the Chair of the Committee for Courts of Justice shall establish a date certain by which any Senator may forward the name of any potential nominee for such office to the Chair.

Web

VA Legislative Information Systems (LIS)

Subcommittees

Civil Law

Meets on: TBD

Members:  Chap Petersen (Chair),  Jennifer BoyskoBen Chafin,  Louise LucasJennifer McClellanRyan McDougle,  Tommy NormentMark Obenshain

Criminal Law

Meets on: TBD

MembersCreigh Deeds (Chair),  Ryan McDougleJoe Morrissey,  Dick SaslawBill StanleyRichard StuartScott Surovell

Bills  

Bills reported out 

SB 1105: Provides that a person who was convicted of a felony offense, or who was adjudicated delinquent of an offense that would have been a felony offense if committed by an adult, may petition the Court of Appeals to have his conviction vacated. Referred to House Committee on Appropriations

SB 1108: Increases from $25,000 to $50,000 the maximum civil jurisdictional limit of general district courts for civil actions for personal injury and wrongful death. House amendments agreed to by Senate (38 Yes to 1 No)

SB 1113: Provides that any person 18 years of age or older who communicates a threat in writing to another to kill or to do serious bodily injury to any other person and makes such threat with the intent to (i) intimidate a civilian population at large; (ii) influence the conduct or activities of a government, including the government of the United States, a state, or a locality, through intimidation; or (iii) compel the emergency evacuation, or avoidance, of any place of assembly, any building or other structure, or any means of mass transportation is guilty of a Class 5 felony. House substitute agreed to by Senate (38 Yes to 0 No)

SB 1119: Creates a special nonreverting fund to be known as the Body-Worn Camera System Fund to assist state or local law enforcement agencies with the costs of purchasing, operating, and maintaining body-worn camera systems.

SB 1122: Repeals the remaining provisions of the Habitual Offender Act. The bill also requires that the Commissioner of the Department of Motor Vehicles reinstate a person’s privilege to drive a motor vehicle that was suspended or revoked solely on the basis that such person was determined to be or adjudicated a habitual offender pursuant to the Habitual Offender Act. Signed by Senate President (02/22/21)

SB 1123: Provides that in any case contesting the validity of a decedent’s will where a presumption of undue influence arises, the burden of producing evidence and the burden of persuasion as to the factual issue that undue influence was exerted over the testator shall be on the party against whom the presumption operates. 

SB 1129: Exempts a member of a lawfully recognized military color guard, honor guard, or similar organization, or a member of a veterans service organization that is Congressionally-chartered or officially recognized by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, when such member is participating in a public ceremony on behalf of such color guard, honor guard, or similar organization or such veterans service organization from the crimes of brandishing a firearm and unlawful paramilitary activity.

SB 1138: Provides that any person who is diagnosed with a sexually transmitted infection and engages in sexual behavior that poses a substantial risk of transmission to another person according to current Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommendations regarding such risk of transmission with the intent to transmit the infection to another person and transmits such infection to that person is guilty of infected sexual battery, punishable as Class 1 misdemeanor. House amendments rejected by Senate (2 Yes to 37 No)

SB 1142: Authorizes any current member of the General Assembly and the current Governor, Lieutenant Governor, and Attorney General to celebrate the rites of marriage anywhere in the Commonwealth without the necessity of bond or order of authorization. Passed House by BLOCK vote (98 Yes to 0 No)

SB 1165: Abolishes the death penalty, including for those persons currently under a death sentence. Passed House (57 Yes to 43 No)

SB 1168: Conforms the definition of “abused or neglected child” in Title 16.1 (Courts Not of Record) with the definition of the same term in Title 63.2 (Welfare (Social Services)).

SB 1180: Provides that a circuit court may enter an order joining, coordinating, consolidating, or transferring civil actions upon finding that separate civil actions brought by a plaintiff on behalf of multiple similarly situated persons involve common questions of law or fact and arise out of the same transaction, occurrence, or series of transactions or occurrences.

SB 1181: Permits the Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Court to retain jurisdiction in cases where a child has petitioned the court to make findings of fact that would allow the child to apply for or receive a state or federal benefit until such child reaches 21 years of age for the purpose of entering findings of fact or amending past orders, to include findings of fact necessary for the person to petition the federal government for status as a special immigrant juvenile.

SB 1184: Allows a parent who has reason to anticipate his possible detention, incarceration, or deportation connected to an immigration action to petition the court for approval of a standby guardian for the parent’s minor child.  Passed House by BLOCK vote (98 Yes to 0 No)

SB 1206: Provides that juvenile court service unit records and Department of Juvenile Justice records may be open for inspection to the Department of Social Services or any local department of social services that is providing services or care for, or has accepted a referral for family assessment or investigation and the provision of services regarding, a juvenile and these local agencies have entered into a formal agreement with the Department of Juvenile Justice to provide coordinated services to such juveniles. Signed by Senate President (02/22/21)

SB 1209: Provides that in an action against a general contractor for nonpayment of wages to a subcontractor’s employees, the general contractor may offer as evidence a written certification that (i) the subcontractor and each of his sub-subcontractors has paid all employees all wages due for the period during which the wages are claimed for the work performed on the project and (ii) to the subcontractor’s knowledge all sub-subcontractors have also paid their employees. 

SB 1213: Authorizes the Department of Motor Vehicles to issue restricted driving credentials to individuals with driver’s license suspensions resulting from drug-related offenses. Signed by Senate President (02/22/21)

SB 1226: Provides that the Compensation Board shall consider workload totals comprehensively, including the use of diversion programs and specialty dockets, when determining staffing and funding levels for an attorney for the Commonwealth and the office.

SB 1234: Allows persons who have been licensed as an attorney or barrister in a foreign country, obtained an LL.M degree from an accredited law school in the United States and been admitted to practice law before the court of last resort in any state or territory of the United States or the District of Columbia to sit for the Virginia Bar examination.

SB 1241: Provides that in a civil action for personal injuries sustained from a motor vehicle accident, regardless of the number of losses sustained by an injured person, an insurance company shall disclose the policy limits of an alleged tortfeasor who has been charged with an offense of driving under the influence within 30 days of a request for such disclosure. Passed House by BLOCK vote (98 Yes to 0 No)

SB 1242: Provides that with the consent of the court and all parties, an appearance in a court may be made by two-way electronic video and audio communication for the purpose of (i) entry of a plea of guilty or nolo contendere and the related sentencing of the defendant charged with a misdemeanor or felony, (ii) entry of a nolle prosequi, or (iii) adjudication of an alleged violation of probation. House amendments agreed to by Senate (38 Yes to 0 No)

SB 1248: Requires the appointed evaluator or the director of the community services board, behavioral health authority, or hospital to acknowledge receipt of the court order requiring a competency evaluation to be performed to the clerk of the court on a form developed by the Office of the Executive Secretary of the Supreme Court of Virginia as soon as practicable but no later than the close of business on the next business day following receipt of the court order. Signed by Senate President (02/22/21)

SB 1256: Requires the social justice organization represented by a member of the Criminal Justice Services Board and a member of the Committee on Training be engaged in advancing inclusion and human rights. Signed by Senate President (02/22/21)

SB 1261: Expands the jurisdiction of the Court of Appeals of Virginia by providing for an appeal of right in every civil case and provides that the granting of further appeal to the Supreme Court of Virginia shall be within the discretion of the Supreme Court. 

SB 1262: Provides that any person who is otherwise eligible to receive a restricted permit to operate a motor vehicle shall not be required to pay in full his fines and costs before being issued such restricted permit.

SB 1266: Eliminates provisions regarding the rebuttable presumptions against being admitted to bail.

SB 1270: Provides that the notice required to be sent to a landowner prior to an authorized condemnor recording a certificate of take or certificate of deposit shall state that (i) the certificate of take or certificate of deposit will be recorded between 30 and 45 days from the date of the notice and (ii) that the property will transfer to the condemnor upon recordation and that the owner has the right to petition the court for distribution of the funds represented in the certificate. Passed House by BLOCK vote (98 Yes to 0 No)

SB 1272: Provides that a court may commit a capital murder defendant to the inpatient custody of the Commissioner of the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services, provided that such defendant has remained unrestorably incompetent for a period of five years. Signed by Senate President (02/22/21)

SB 1306: Eliminates the mandatory minimum term of confinement of six months for an assault and battery committed against a judge, magistrate, law-enforcement officer, correctional officer, person directly involved in the care, treatment, or supervision of inmates, firefighter or volunteer firefighter, or emergency medical services personnel.

SB 1315: Permits the admission of evidence offered by the defendant concerning a defendant’s mental condition at the time of an alleged offense, including expert testimony, is relevant, is not evidence concerning an ultimate issue of fact, if such evidence (i) tends to show the defendant did or did not have the specific mental state required for the offense charged and (ii) is otherwise admissible pursuant to the general rules of evidence.

SB 1316: Exempts prospective employees and volunteers of certain child care providers from statutory background check requirements where the individual completed a background check within the previous five years, provided that (i) such background check was conducted after July 1, 2017; (ii) the results of such background check indicated that the individual had not been convicted of any barrier crime and was not the subject of a founded complaint of child abuse or neglect; and (iii) the individual is an employee or volunteer of a child care provider that is subject to background check requirements or has been separated from such employment or volunteer position for not more than 180 days. Passed House by BLOCK vote (98 Yes to 0 No)

SB 1325: Allows a grandparent who has petitioned the court for visitation of a minor grandchild, in cases where the parent of the minor grandchild is deceased or incapacitated, to introduce evidence of such deceased or incapacitated parent’s consent to visitation with the grandparent. House substitute agreed to by Senate (37 Yes to 2 No)

SB 1336: Provides that in any criminal case for reckless or improper driving where a defendant’s license to operate a motor vehicle, engine, or train is subject to revocation or suspension and the court orders a defendant, as a condition of probation or otherwise, to enter into and successfully complete an alcohol safety action program, the court may issue the defendant a restricted license to operate a motor vehicle where the only restriction is to prohibit the defendant from operating a motor vehicle that is not equipped with a functioning, certified ignition interlock system for a period of not less than 12 consecutive months without alcohol-related violations of the interlock requirements. House substitute agreed to by Senate (38 Yes to 0 No)

SB 1367: Requires that, for any medical review of a claim made pursuant to the provisions of the Line of Duty Act, the Virginia Retirement System shall require that such review be conducted by a doctor, nurse, or psychologist who is licensed in the Commonwealth or a contiguous state.

SB 1381: Makes it a Class 1 misdemeanor for a person to possess or transport any (i) firearm or other weapon designed or intended to propel a missile or projectile of any kind; (ii) frame, receiver, muffler, silencer, missile, projectile, or ammunition designed for use with a dangerous weapon; or (iii) other dangerous weapon within Capitol Square or into any building owned or leased by the Commonwealth. A dangerous weapon includes a bowie knife, switchblade knife, ballistic knife, machete, razor, slingshot, spring stick, fighting chain, throwing star, and oriental dart or any weapon of like kind.

SB 1391: Requires the Virginia Criminal Sentencing Commission to collect and disseminate, on an annual basis, statewide and locality-level data related to adults charged with criminal offenses punishable by confinement in jail or a term of imprisonment. Passed both the House and Senate

SB 1400: Authorizes the Board of Wildlife Resources to quitclaim any interest in a parcel of land and convey a right-of-way easement to the Valerie H. MacDowell Trust. Signed by Senate President (02/22/21)

SB 1406: Eliminates criminal penalties for simple possession of marijuana, modifies several other criminal penalties related to marijuana, and provides for an automatic expungement process for those convicted of certain marijuana-related crimes. 

SB 1415: Changes the punishment and sentencing requirements for a violation of a preliminary child protective order so that the maximum penalty is a Class 1 misdemeanor and the court is no longer required to enter a permanent family abuse protective order (i.e., a protective order with a maximum duration of two years) upon a conviction of a violation of a preliminary child protective order.

SB 1426: Provides that an order of restitution shall be docketed in the name of the Commonwealth, or a locality if applicable, on behalf of a victim, unless the victim named in the order of restitution requests in writing that the order be docketed in the name of the victim. Signed by Senate President (02/22/21)

SB 1431: Provides that in cases where a defendant was previously determined to be unrestorably incompetent in the past two years, a competency report may recommend that the court find the defendant unrestorably incompetent to stand trial, and the court may proceed with the disposition of the case based on such recommendation. Signed by Senate President (02/22/21)

SB 1437: Eliminates the requirement that a promise to appear be completed after the issuance of a summons for a misdemeanor offense or an administrative violation.

SB 1442: Establishes a public defender office for the County of Chesterfield. The provisions of the bill are contingent on funding in a general appropriation act.

SB 1443: Eliminates all mandatory minimum sentences of confinement from the Code of Virginia. The bill directs the Secretary of Public Safety and Homeland Security to establish a work group to evaluate the feasibility of resentencing persons previously convicted of a felony offense that was punishable by a mandatory minimum term of confinement.

SB 1456: Provides that a juvenile may be committed to the Department of Juvenile Justice (the Department) only if he (i) is adjudicated delinquent of a violent juvenile felony and is 11 years of age or older or (ii) is 14 years of age or older. House amendment agreed to by Senate (38 Yes to 0 No)

SB 1461: Provides that any person who (i) offers, confers, or agrees to confer upon another any pecuniary benefit as consideration for the recipient to act in the unlawful delivery of items or contraband to prisoners or (ii) receives any pecuniary benefit or other consideration to act in in the unlawful delivery of items or contraband to prisoners shall be guilty of bribery, punishable as a Class 4 felony. House substitute agreed to by Senate (39 Yes to 0 No)

SB 1465: Provides that any person who conducts, finances, manages, supervises, directs, or owns a gambling device that is located in an unregulated location is subject to a civil penalty of up to $25,000. 

SB 1468: Establishes a process for a state or local law-enforcement agency, an attorney for the Commonwealth, the Attorney General, or any other agency or department employing law-enforcement officers to complete a certification form or declaration that is required by federal immigration law certifying that a person is a victim of qualifying criminal activity.

SB 1475: Provides that a search warrant for the search of any place of abode shall be executed by initial entry of the abode only in the daytime hours between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. unless (i) a judge or a magistrate, if a judge is not available, authorizes the execution of such search warrant at another time for good cause shown by particularized facts in an affidavit; or (ii) prior to the issuance of the search warrant, law-enforcement officers lawfully entered and secured the place to be searched and remained at such place continuously. House amendments agreed to by Senate (38 Yes to 0 No)

Bills Passed

  • SB 1108: General district courts; jurisdictional limits
    Increases from $25,000 to $50,000 the maximum civil jurisdictional limit of general district courts for civil actions for personal injury and wrongful death.
  • SB 1113: Communicating threats of death or bodily injury to a person with intent to intimidate; penalty
    Provides that any person 18 years of age or older who communicates a threat in writing, including an electronically transmitted communication producing a visual or electronic message, to another to kill or to do serious bodily injury to any other person and makes such threat with the intent to (i) intimidate a civilian population at large; (ii) influence the conduct or activities of a government, including the government of the United States, a state, or a locality, through intimidation; or (iii) compel the emergency evacuation, or avoidance, of any place of assembly, any building or other structure, or any means of mass transportation is guilty of a Class 5 felony. The bill provides that any person younger than 18 years of age who commits such offense is guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor. This bill is identical to HB 2194.
  • SB 1119: Law-enforcement agencies; body-worn camera systems
    Creates a special nonreverting fund to be known as the Body-Worn Camera System Fund to assist state or local law-enforcement agencies with the costs of purchasing, operating, and maintaining body-worn camera systems.
  • SB 1122: Habitual offenders; repeals remaining provisions of Habitual Offender Act
    Repeals the remaining provisions of the Habitual Offender Act. The bill also requires that the Commissioner of the Department of Motor Vehicles reinstate a person’s privilege to drive a motor vehicle that was suspended or revoked solely on the basis that such person was determined to be or adjudicated a habitual offender pursuant to the Habitual Offender Act. The bill also authorizes the Virginia Alcohol and Safety Action Program to continue to administer intervention for individuals who were ordered to attend an intervention interview on or before June 30, 2021.
  • SB 1138: Sexually transmitted infections; infected sexual battery, penalty
    Provides that any person who is diagnosed with a sexually transmitted infection and engages in sexual behavior that poses a substantial risk of transmission to another person according to current Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommendations regarding such risk of transmission with the intent to transmit the infection to another person and transmits such infection to that person is guilty of infected sexual battery, punishable as Class 1 misdemeanor. Under current law, the crime of infected battery is punishable as a Class 6 felony. The bill also repeals the crime of donating or selling blood, body fluids, organs, and tissues by persons infected with human immunodeficiency virus and the provisions regarding the testing of certain persons for human immunodeficiency virus or hepatitis B or C viruses. The bill contains technical amendments.
  • SB 1142: Marriage; persons who may celebrate rites, authorizes current members of the General Assembly
    Authorizes any current member of the General Assembly and the current Governor, Lieutenant Governor, and Attorney General to celebrate the rites of marriage anywhere in the Commonwealth without the necessity of bond or order of authorization.
  • SB 1165: Death penalty; abolition of current penalty
    Abolishes the death penalty, including for those persons currently under a death sentence. The bill provides that no person may be sentenced to death or put to death on or after its effective date for any violation of law. This bill is identical to HB 2263.
  • SB 1168: “Abused or neglected child;” definition
    Conforms the definition of “abused or neglected child” in Title 16.1 (Courts Not of Record) with the definition of the same term in Title 63.2 (Welfare (Social Services)).
  • SB 1181: Special immigrant juvenile status; jurisdiction
    Permits the juvenile and domestic relations district court to retain jurisdiction in cases where a child has petitioned the court to make findings of fact that would allow the child to apply for or receive a state or federal benefit until such child reaches 21 years of age for the purpose of entering findings of fact or amending past orders, to include findings of fact necessary for the person to petition the federal government for status as a special immigrant juvenile.
  • SB 1184: Standby guardianship; triggering event
    Allows a parent who has reason to anticipate his possible detention, incarceration, or deportation connected to an immigration action to petition the court for approval of a standby guardian for the parent’s minor child.
  • SB 1209: Subcontractor’s employees; liability of general contractor for wages
    Provides that in an action against a general contractor for nonpayment of wages to a subcontractor’s employees, the general contract may offer as evidence a written certification that (i) the subcontractor and each of his sub-subcontractors has paid all employees all wages due for the period during which the wages are claimed for the work performed on the project and (ii) to the subcontractor’s knowledge all sub-subcontractors have also paid their employees. The bill also provides that the terms “general contractor” and “subcontractor” shall not include persons solely furnishing materials for the purposes of the liability of a contractor for wages due to a subcontractor’s employees.
  • SB 1213: Restricted licenses; DMV authorized to issue
    Authorizes the Department of Motor Vehicles to issue restricted driving credentials to individuals with driver’s license suspensions resulting from drug-related offenses.
  • SB 1234: Virginia State Bar examination; foreign applicants, evidence required
    Allows persons who have completed all degree requirements from a law school not approved by the American Bar Association, including a foreign law school, obtained an LL.M. from a law school approved by the American Bar Association, and been admitted to practice law before the court of last resort in any state or territory of the United States or the District of Columbia to sit for the Virginia Bar examination.
  • SB 1241: Personal injury claim; disclosure of insurance policy limits
    Provides that in a civil action for personal injuries sustained from a motor vehicle accident, regardless of the amount of losses sustained by an injured person, an insurance company shall disclose the policy limits of an alleged tortfeasor who has been charged with an offense of driving under the influence within 30 days of a request for such disclosure. Under current law, such disclosure is required only if the alleged tortfeasor is convicted of such an offense. The bill also adds the offense of refusal to submit to a breath or blood test to the list of driving under the influence offenses for which disclosure of the insurance policy limits is required.
  • SB 1242: Personal appearance by two-way electronic video and audio communication; entry of plea
    Provides that with the consent of the court and all parties, an appearance in a court may be made by two-way electronic video and audio communication for the purpose of (i) entry of a plea of guilty or nolo contendere and the related sentencing of the defendant charged with a misdemeanor or felony, (ii) entry of a nolle prosequi or dismissal, or (iii) a revocation proceeding. As introduced, this bill was a recommendation of the Judicial Council of Virginia and the Committee on District Courts.
  • SB 1248: Juveniles; competency evaluation, receipt of court order
    Requires the appointed evaluator or the director of the community services board, behavioral health authority, or hospital to acknowledge receipt of the court order requiring a competency evaluation to be performed to the clerk of the court on a form developed by the Office of the Executive Secretary of the Supreme Court of Virginia as soon as practicable but no later than the close of business on the next business day following receipt of the court order. The bill also provides that if the appointed evaluator or the director of the community services board, behavioral health authority, hospital, or private evaluator is unable to conduct the evaluation, he shall inform the court on the acknowledgment form.
  • SB 1256: Criminal Justice Services Board and Committee on Training; membership
    Requires the social justice organization represented by a member of the Criminal Justice Services Board and a member of the Committee on Training be engaged in advancing inclusion and human rights. The bill contains a technical amendment to compulsory in-service training for law-enforcement officers.
  • SB 1261: Court of Appeals; expands jurisdiction, increases from 11 to 17 number of judges on Court
    Expands the jurisdiction of the Court of Appeals of Virginia by providing for an appeal of right in every civil case and provides that the granting of further appeal to the Supreme Court of Virginia shall be within the discretion of the Supreme Court. The bill provides for an appeal of right in criminal cases by a defendant, but leaves unchanged the current requirement that in criminal cases the Commonwealth must petition the Court of Appeals for granting of an appeal. The bill increases from 11 to 17 the number of judges on the Court of Appeals. The bill also (i) provides jurisdiction to the Court of Appeals over interlocutory appeals and petitions for review of injunctions; (ii) allows for oral arguments to be dispensed with if the panel of judges makes a unanimous decision that the appeal is wholly without merit or that the dispositive issues on appeal have already been authoritatively decided and the appellant has not argued that the case law should be overturned, extended, or reversed; (iii) provides that the Attorney General shall represent the Commonwealth in criminal appeals unless, and with the consent of the Attorney General, the attorney for the Commonwealth who prosecuted the case files a notice of appearance; (iv) eliminates the requirement for an appeal bond in criminal appeals; (v) requires all criminal cases in a court of record to be recorded and requires the clerk of the circuit court to prepare a transcript of any trial for which an appeal is noticed to him; and (vi) requires an expedited review of appeals of permanent protective orders and of bond validation proceedings. The bill has a delayed effective date of January 1, 2022, which is applicable to all provisions of the bill except for those increasing the number of judges on the Court of Appeals.
  • SB 1262: Restricted permit; prepayment of fines and costs
    Provides that any person who is otherwise eligible to receive a restricted permit to operate a motor vehicle shall not be required to pay in full his fines and costs before being issued such restricted permit.
  • SB 1266: Admission to bail; rebuttable presumptions against bail
    Eliminates provisions regarding the rebuttable presumptions against being admitted to bail.
  • SB 1272: Unrestorably incompetent defendant; disposition, capital murder charge, inpatient custody
    Provides that a court may commit a capital murder defendant to the inpatient custody of the Commissioner of the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services, provided that such defendant has remained unrestorably incompetent for a period of five years. The bill provides that after such defendant has been committed to the inpatient custody of the Commissioner, he may make interfacility transfers and treatment and management decisions regarding such defendant after obtaining prior approval of or review by the committing court. This bill is a recommendation of the Virginia Criminal Justice Conference.
  • SB 1315: Criminal proceedings; consideration of mental condition & intellectual & developmental disabilities
    Permits the admission of evidence offered by the defendant concerning a defendant’s mental condition at the time of an alleged offense, including expert testimony, is relevant, is not evidence concerning an ultimate issue of fact, if such evidence (i) tends to show the defendant did or did not have the specific mental state required for the offense charged and (ii) is otherwise admissible pursuant to the general rules of evidence. If a defendant intends to introduce such evidence, the bill requires him or his counsel to give notice in writing to the attorney for the Commonwealth. The bill also clarifies that a diagnosis of an intellectual or developmental disability shall be considered by a judicial officer for the purpose of rebuttal of a presumption against bail and that a court may order that a sentencing report prepared by a probation officer contain any diagnoses of an intellectual or developmental disability. Lastly, the bill adds to the requirements to be met for qualification as a court-appointed attorney two hours of continuing legal education, which shall cover the representation of individuals with behavioral or mental health disorders and individuals with intellectual or developmental disabilities. This bill incorporates SB 1383.
  • SB 1316: Child care providers; background checks, portability
    Exempts prospective employees and volunteers of certain child care providers from statutory background check requirements where the individual completed a background check within the previous five years, provided that (i) such background check was conducted after July 1, 2017; (ii) the results of such background check indicated that the individual had not been convicted of any barrier crime and was not the subject of a founded complaint of child abuse or neglect; and (iii) the individual is an employee or volunteer of a child care provider that is subject to background check requirements or has been separated from such employment or volunteer position for not more than 180 days. The bill requires such child care providers, prior to hiring or allowing to volunteer any individual without the completion of a background check, to obtain written certification that such individual satisfies all such requirements and is eligible to serve as an employee or volunteer. The bill also directs the Department of Education (the Department) to establish a two-year pilot program for the purpose of stabilizing and improving the quality of services provided in the Commonwealth’s child care industry. The bill provides that under the pilot program a fixed sum of funds, based on the number of children served and certain other factors, will be disbursed to participating child care providers who agree to meet higher standards of quality and care, as determined by the Department. The bill requires the Department to report to the Governor and the General Assembly no later than December 1 of each year of the pilot program certain information set forth in the bill. The bill also requires the Department, in collaboration with the School Readiness Committee, to (a) identify and analyze financing strategies that can be used to support the systemic costs of high-quality child care services, ensure equitable compensation for child care staff, and better prepare children for kindergarten and (b) analyze the effectiveness of using a cost-of-quality modeling system for the child care subsidy program. The bill requires the Department to report its findings to the Governor and the General Assembly no later than December 1, 2021.
  • SB 1325: Visitation; petition of grandparent
    Allows a grandparent who has petitioned the court for visitation of a minor grandchild, in cases where the parent of the minor grandchild is deceased or incapacitated, to introduce evidence of such deceased or incapacitated parent’s consent to visitation with the grandparent. The bill provides that if the parent’s consent is proven by a preponderance of the evidence, the court may then determine if grandparent visitation is in the best interest of the minor grandchild.
  • SB 1336: Ignition interlock systems; restricted permits to operate a motor vehicle
    Provides that in any criminal case for reckless or improper driving where a defendant’s license to operate a motor vehicle, engine, or train is subject to revocation or suspension and the court orders a defendant, as a condition of probation or otherwise, to enter into and successfully complete an alcohol safety action program, the court may issue the defendant a restricted license to operate a motor vehicle where the only restriction is to prohibit the defendant from operating a motor vehicle that is not equipped with a functioning, certified ignition interlock system for a period of not less than six consecutive months without alcohol-related violations of the interlock requirements.
  • SB 1339: Criminal records; sealing of records, Sealing Fee Fund created, penalties, report
    Establishes a process for the sealing of police and court records, defined in the bill, of criminal records for certain convictions, deferred dispositions, and acquittals and for offenses that have been nolle prossed or otherwise dismissed. The bill also allows a person to petition for the expungement of the police and court records relating to convictions of marijuana possession, underage alcohol or tobacco possession, and using a false ID to obtain alcohol and for deferred disposition dismissals for possession of controlled substances or marijuana, underage alcohol or tobacco possession, and using a false ID to obtain alcohol. The bill creates the Expungement Fee Fund, which is funded by all collected expungement fees. The bill provides that expungement fees shall not be refundable, but persons who are indigent or represented by court-appointed counsel shall not be required to pay such fees. The Fund is administered by the Executive Secretary of the Supreme Court and used to fund the costs of court-appointed counsel. The bill requires a business screening service, which is a business that conducts criminal history records searches, must register with the Department of State Police to receive expungement orders and must follow reasonable procedures to ensure it maintains accurate information. The bill directs the Attorney General to enforce these requirements, authorizing it to file suit for damages and a civil penalty of up to $2,500. With the exception of the provisions regarding the Expungement Fee Fund, and the funding provisions of such fund, the bill has delayed effective date of July 1, 2022. The bill directs the Department of Criminal Justice Services to adopt emergency regulations to implement the provisions of the bill. The provisions of the bill are contingent on funding in a general appropriation act. This bill incorporates SB 1283 and SB 1372.
  • SB 1381: Weapons; possessing or transporting within Capitol Square, etc
    Makes it a Class 1 misdemeanor for a person to possess or transport any (i) firearm or other weapon designed or intended to propel a missile or projectile of any kind; (ii) frame, receiver, muffler, silencer, missile, projectile, or ammunition designed for use with a dangerous weapon; or (iii) other dangerous weapon within Capitol Square or into any building owned or leased by the Commonwealth. A dangerous weapon includes a bowie knife, switchblade knife, ballistic knife, machete, razor, slingshot, spring stick, fighting chain, throwing star, and oriental dart or any weapon of like kind. The bill provides exceptions for law-enforcement officers, retired state police officers, conservators of the peace, magistrates, court officers, judges, county or city treasurers, commissioners or deputy commissioners of the Virginia Workers’ Compensation Commission, authorized security personnel, bail bondsmen, bail enforcement agents, and active military personnel while in the conduct of such persons’ official duties. The bill requires that notice of the provisions prohibiting the possessing or transporting of such weapons be posted at each public entrance to Capitol Square or such building owned or leased by the Commonwealth. The bill also provides that any weapon or item possessed or transported in violation of these provisions is subject to seizure by a law-enforcement officer and forfeiture to the Commonwealth.
  • SB 1391: Pretrial data collection; VCSC to collect and disseminate on an annual basis
    Requires the Virginia Criminal Sentencing Commission to collect and disseminate, on an annual basis, statewide and locality-level data related to adults charged with criminal offenses punishable by confinement in jail or a term of imprisonment. The bill provides that any personal or case identifying information within the data shall not be subject to the Virginia Freedom of Information Act and shall not be made publicly available. The bill does not require that the Virginia Criminal Sentencing Commission submit such annual report prior to December 1, 2022. Additionally, the bill requires the Virginia State Crime Commission to provide the Virginia Criminal Sentencing Commission with the final dataset of all adults charged with a criminal offense punishable by confinement in jail or a term of imprisonment in October 2017 and that the Virginia Criminal Sentencing Commission make such statewide and locality-level data publicly available on a website established and maintained by the Virginia Criminal Sentencing Commission as an electronic dataset, excluding any personal and case identifying information, by October 1, 2021, and on an electronic interactive data dashboard tool that displays aggregated data based on characteristics or indicators selected by the user, by December 1, 2022. As introduced, this bill was a recommendation of the Virginia State Crime Commission and is identical to HB 2110.
  • SB 1400: Tazewell County; quitclaim and conveyance of easement by Board of Wildlife Resources
    Authorizes the Board of Wildlife Resources to quitclaim any interest in a parcel of land and convey a right-of-way easement to the Valerie H. MacDowell Trust. The quitclaim is a result of a boundary line correction of an acquisition by the Board and applies to an unimproved parcel of land containing about 13.6 acres on the watershed of Little Tumbling Creek. The easement, which will follow an existing road and bridge across a portion of the Clinch Mountain Wildlife Management Area, will allow ingress and egress to the MacDowell Trust property from State Route 607. The MacDowell Trust shall be solely responsible for the maintenance and upkeep of the easement. This bill is identical to HB 2252.
  • SB 1415: Protective orders; violations of preliminary child protective order, changes punishment, etc
    Changes the punishment and sentencing requirements for a violation of a preliminary child protective order so that the maximum penalty is a Class 1 misdemeanor and the court is no longer required to enter a permanent family abuse protective order (i.e., a protective order with a maximum duration of two years) upon a conviction of a violation of a preliminary child protective order. The bill provides that a violation of a preliminary child protective order is punishable as contempt of court; however, if the violation involves an act or acts of commission or omission that endanger the child’s life, health, or normal development or result in bodily injury to the child, it is punishable as a Class 1 misdemeanor. Under current law, violations of preliminary child protective orders constitute contempt of court and are also subject to the same penalties as violations of preliminary, emergency, and permanent family abuse protective orders, including enhanced penalties for certain violations. As introduced, this bill was a recommendation of the Virginia Criminal Justice Conference.
  • SB 1426: Orders of restitution; docketed on behalf of victim, enforcement
    Provides that an order of restitution shall be docketed in the name of the Commonwealth, or a locality if applicable, on behalf of a victim, unless the victim named in the order of restitution requests in writing that the order be docketed in the name of the victim. The bill provides that an order of restitution docketed in the name of the victim shall be enforced by the victim as a civil judgment. The bill also states that the clerk of such court shall record and disburse restitution payments in accordance with orders of restitution or judgments for restitution docketed in the name of the Commonwealth or a locality. The bill provides that at any time before a judgment for restitution docketed in the name of the Commonwealth or a locality is satisfied, the court shall, at the written request of the victim, order the circuit court clerk to execute and docket an assignment of the judgment to the victim and remove from its automated financial system the amount of unpaid restitution. Similarly, the bill provides that if a judge of the district court orders the circuit court clerk to execute and docket an assignment of the judgment to the victim, the district court clerk shall remove from its automated financial system the amount of unpaid restitution. Additionally, the bill states that if the victim requests that the order of restitution be docketed in the name of the victim or that a judgment for restitution previously docketed in the name of the Commonwealth or a locality be assigned to the victim, the victim shall provide to the court an address where the defendant can mail payment for the amount due and such address shall not be confidential. This bill is identical to HB 2233.
  • SB 1431: Unrestorably incompetent defendant; competency report
    Provides that in cases where a defendant was previously determined to be unrestorably incompetent in the past two years, a competency report may recommend that the court find the defendant unrestorably incompetent to stand trial, and the court may proceed with the disposition of the case based on such recommendation. Under current law, the defendant is required to undergo treatment to restore his competency before the court can find a defendant unrestorably incompetent to stand trial.
  • SB 1442: Public defender office; establishes an office for the County of Chesterfield
    Establishes a public defender office for the County of Chesterfield. The provisions of the bill are contingent on funding in a general appropriation act.
  • SB 1456: Juveniles; eligibility for commitment to the Department of Juvenile Justice
    Provides that a juvenile may be committed to the Department of Juvenile Justice (the Department) only if he (i) is adjudicated delinquent of a violent juvenile felony and is 11 years of age or older or (ii) is 14 years of age or older. The bill provides that no juvenile younger than 11 years of age may be detained in a secure facility prior to an order of final disposition unless he is alleged to have committed a violent juvenile felony; in such case, the juvenile may only be detained in an approved foster home, a facility operated by a licensed child welfare agency, or another suitable place designated by the court and approved by the Department, but under no circumstances shall such juvenile be detained in a secure detention facility.
  • SB 1461: Bribery in correctional facilities; penalty
    Provides that any person who receives any pecuniary benefit or other consideration to act in the unlawful delivery of items or contraband to prisoners is guilty of bribery, punishable as a Class 4 felony. The bill also provides that any law-enforcement officer, jail officer, or correctional officer who violates the provisions of the bill shall be decertified and shall be forever ineligible for reemployment as a law-enforcement officer, jail officer, or correctional officer in the Commonwealth.
  • SB 1468: Victims of crime; certifications for victims of qualifying criminal activity
    Establishes a process for a state or local law-enforcement agency, an attorney for the Commonwealth, the Attorney General, or any other agency or department employing law-enforcement officers to complete a certification form or declaration that is required by federal immigration law certifying that a person is a victim of qualifying criminal activity.
  • SB 1475: Search warrants; date and time of issuance, exceptions
    Provides that a search warrant for the search of any place of abode shall be executed by initial entry of the abode only in the daytime hours between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. unless (i) a judge or a magistrate, if a judge is not available, authorizes the execution of such search warrant at another time for good cause shown by particularized facts in an affidavit or (ii) prior to the issuance of the search warrant, law-enforcement officers lawfully entered and secured the place to be searched and remained at such place continuously. The bill also provides that a law-enforcement officer shall make reasonable efforts to locate a judge before seeking authorization to execute the warrant at another time, unless circumstances require the issuance of the warrant after 5 p.m., in which case the law-enforcement officer may seek such authorization from a magistrate without first making reasonable efforts to locate a judge. The bill contains an emergency clause.

Commissions & Boards

oint Subcommittee to Study Barrier Crimes and Criminal History Records Checks

Source: Webpage

Study of the Commonwealth’s laws related to barrier crimes and criminal history records checks and development of recommendations related to (i) whether statutory provisions related to criminal history records checks, barrier crimes, and barrier crime exceptions should be reorganized and consolidated into a central location in the Code of Virginia; (ii) whether certain crimes should be removed from the list of barrier crimes; (iii) whether barrier crime exceptions and waiver processes should be broadened; (iv) whether the required amount of time that must lapse after conviction of certain barrier crimes should be shortened; and (v) other changes that could be made to criminal history records check and barrier crimes requirements that would improve the organization, effectiveness, and fairness of such provisions.

Criminal Justice Services Board

Source: Webpage

Supervisory board of the Department of Criminal Justice Services which is the planning and coordinating agency responsible for the implementation and administration of any federal programs for strengthing and improving law enforcement, and the administration of criminal justice, and delinquency prevention and control throughout the Commonwealth.

Criminal Sentencing Commission

Source: Website

To develop discretionary sentencing guidelines to achieve the goals of certainty, consistency, and adequacy of punishment with due regard to the seriousness of the offense, the dangerousness of the offender, deterrence of individuals from committing criminal offenses,and the use of alternative sanctions, where appropriate.

Disbursement Review Committee

Source: Webpage

Provide input to the Attorney General on forfeitures through the U.S. Department of Justice Asset Forfeiture Program or the U.S. Treasury Executive Office for Asset Forfeiture

Committee on District Courts

Source: Webpage

Authorizing the appointment of substitute judges pursuant to § 16.1-69.14, authorizing the establishment of clerks’ offices in counties or cities as may be required and establishing when such offices are open for business, authorizing the appointment of personnel for the district courts and establishing procedures for administrative review of appeals from personnel actions for district court personnel and magistrates, fixing salary classification schedules of court personnel and establishing vacation and sick leave for district court judges, district court personnel and magistrates, and for such other duties or matters as may be conferred upon by law.

Forensic Science Board

Source: Webpage

Policy Board

VA Council Interstate Compact for Juveniles

Source: Webpage

The Council shall exercise oversight and advocacy concerning its participation in interstate commission activities and other duties as may be determined by the Council, including development of policies concerning operations and procedures of the compact within Virginia.

Judicial Conference of Virginia for District Courts

Source: Webpage

There is hereby established a Judicial Conference of Virginia for District Courts whose active members shall be the judge of every general district court and juvenile and domestic relations district court of the Commonwealth. The Attorney General of Virginia, the chairmen of the Courts of Justice Committees of the Senate and House of Delegates or their designees who shall be members of the Courts of Justice committees, the president and secretary of the Virginia State Bar, the president and secretary of the Virginia Bar Association, the president and secretary of the Virginia Trial Lawyers Association, the president and secretary of the Old Dominion Bar Association, the president and secretary of the Virginia Association of Commonwealth’s Attorneys, the president and secretary of the Virginia Women Attorneys Association, the president and secretary of the Virginia College of Criminal Defense Attorneys, and the president and secretary of the Virginia Association of Defense Attorneys shall be honorary members of the Conference without voting privilege.

Judicial Council of Virginia

Source: Webpage

Study the organization and the rules and methods of procedure and practice of the judicial system, the work accomplished and the results produced by the system and shall make studies of the need, or lack of need, of additional judges or justices of the Supreme Court, the Court of Appeals of Virginia, and the circuit courts.

Judicial Inquiry and Review Commission

Source: Webpage

To investigate charges arising out of the present or any prior term of office which would be the basis for retirement, censure, or removal of a judge under Article VI, Section 10 of the Constitution of Virginia.

Advisory Committee on Juvenile Justice

Source: Webpage

Advise and assist all agencies on matters related to the prevention and treatment of juvenile delinquency and the administration of juvenile justice in the Commonwealth.

Virginia Advisory Committee on Sexual and Domestic Violence

Source: Webpage

The Advisory Committee shall have the responsibility for advising and assisting the Board, the Department, all agencies, departments, boards, and institutions of the Commonwealth, and units of local government, or combinations thereof, on matters related to the prevention and reduction of sexual and domestic violence in the Commonwealth, and to promote the efficient administration of grant funds to state and local programs that work in these areas.

Commission To Study Slavery and Subsequent De Jure and De Facto Racial and Economic Discrimination Against African Americans

Source: Webpage

To study the current impact and long-term inequities of slavery and subsequent de jure and de facto racial and economic discrimination against African Americans

Virginia African American Advisory Board

Source: Webpage

The Virginia African American Advisory Board (the Board) is established as an advisory board in the executive branch of state government.

Qualifications: The Board shall have a total membership of 26 members that shall consist of 21 nonlegislative citizen members and five ex officio members. Nonlegislative citizen members shall be appointed as follows: 21 members, at least 15 of whom shall be African American, to be appointed by the Governor, subject to confirmation by the General Assembly. The Secretaries of the Commonwealth, Commerce and Trade, Education, Health and Human Resources, and Public Safety and Homeland Security or their designees shall serve ex officio with nonvoting privileges.

Virginia Indigent Defense Commission

Source: Website

To develop and publicize a list of and develop and enforce the qualification standards for attorneys seeking eligibility to serve as court-appointed counsel for indigent defendants pursuant to § 19.2-159.

X
Local Government Committee 1Local Government Committee

Meets on: Monday at 9:00 a.m. in Senate Room 3, Capitol

Members: Lewis, Lynwood (Chair) –  John Bell – Amanda Chase  – Bill DeSteph –Siobhan Dunnavant – Barbara Favola – Emmett Hanger  – Ghazala Hashmi  – Janet Howell – Jen Kiggans  –  Jeremy McPike –  Joe Morrissey  – Todd Pillion –Lionell Spruill  – Bill Stanley

(8 Democrats and 7 Republicans)

Subcommittees:

  • Charters
i
Local Government bills passed by General Assembly
Virginia Legislative Information System

Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”)

  • SB 1120: County executive form of government; local budgets
  • SB 1128: Norfolk, City of; amending charter, general updates
  • SB 1136: License plates, special; repeals issuance of certain plates
  • SB 1216: Crewe, Town of; amending charter, changes to charter including town council, elections and powers
  • SB 1152: Appomattox, Town of; amending charter, shifts local elections from May to November, etc
  • SB 1157: Municipal elections; shifting elections to November
  • SB 1207: Solar and energy storage projects; siting agreements throughout the Commonwealth
  • SB 1208: Continuity of government; extends period of time that locality may provide after disaster, etc
  • SB 1267: Covington, City of; amending charter, consolidated school division, salaries
  • SB 1270: Eminent domain; notice of intent to file certificate
  • SB 1298: Tourism improvement districts; authorizes any locality to create
  • SB 1309: Local stormwater assistance; flood mitigation and protection
  • SB 1385: Underground utility facilities; Fairfax County
  • SB 1393: Trees; replacement and conservation during development, effective date
  • SB 1399: Tourism Development Authority; name change
  • SB 1447: Buckingham County; fees for disposal of solid waste
  • SB 1457: Historic sites; urban county executive form of gov’t. (Fairfax County), provisions in its ordinance
i
Local Government 2021 Hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee: 1/18  1/25  2/1  2/15  2/22

Subcommittees:
Charters: 2/15

RSA bill fails in committee
Daily Progess, Gracie Hart BrooksFebruary 9, 2021 (Medium)

A three-county marriage is in the midst of a divorce, senators said Monday.
Members of the Senate Committee on Local Government discussed Senate Bill 1355 during a Monday morning session. The bill would allow any member locality of the Rapidan Service Authority (RSA) to withdraw from the authority regardless of any outstanding bonds. The locality would need to meet certain requirements in order to do so including obtaining the unanimous consent of all holders of any outstanding bonds unless all such bonds have been paid or cashed or United States government obligations have been deposited for payment. Any written obligation to RSA incurred by the locality while a member of the authority would remain and the withdrawing locality would assume ownership and management of any RSA asset located within its limits and assume any debt related to said asset.

The bill was introduced by Senator Emmett Hanger, Jr. who represents the 24th District of which both RSA members Madison and Greene counties belong. Third RSA member Orange County is represented by Senator Bryce Reeves in the 17th District. The introduction of the bill came months after Greene County Supervisors passed a resolution asking to withdraw from the authority. Orange and Madison counties declined. In September, Greene County Supervisors filed two lawsuits against RSA.

November elections are more convenient and less confusing for voters, have massively higher voter turnout, and save taxpayers money compared to standalone May local elections. SB 1157, sponsored by Sen. Lionell Spruill (D-Chesapeake), would consolidate all Virginia local elections to November. It was successfully reported out of the Senate’s Local Government committee on Monday morning, January 18. Del. Cliff Hayes, Del. Kelly Convirs- Fowler, and Del. Nancy Guy are co-sponsoring the bill in the House of Delegates. In the last two days, Del. Shelly Simonds and Del. Clint Jenkins have also agreed to complete co-sponsor paperwork for the bill as well.

Despite separate May local elections costing Virginia taxpayers more, 115 Virginia localities – representing hundreds of thousands of Virginians – hold local elections in May, when voter turnout is abysmally low compared to November elections. Four of the Virginia localities that hold these anti-democratic, low-turnout May elections each have more than 89,000 registered voters: Chesapeake, Norfolk, Newport News, and Hampton.

Standalone municipal elections developed as efforts to decrease immigrant and minority voting. Historically and today, voters in low-turnout May elections tend to be whiter, wealthier, and older than November voters.

The Senate version of Jones’ bill, sponsored by Saslaw, initially contained a clause making it retroactive to March 1, 2020. But Senate committees ultimately stripped retroactivity from all three measures after the state’s Department of Planning and Budget warned the fiscal impact was “indeterminate.”

Localities, especially, have long argued that dating the bill back to March could lead to hundreds of additional COVID-19 claims from their employees, who would now be presumed to have contracted the virus on the job. That’s a financial burden that they — and their insurers — aren’t prepared to shoulder, representatives from cities and counties argued.

“Local governments and risk insurance providers haven’t budgeted for an expansion of the liability to cover additional presumptions related to COVID-19,” Jeremy Bennett, the director of intergovernmental affairs for the Virginia Association of Counties, said during a committee hearing last month, adding that it could have a “multi-million dollar impact.”

Senate lawmakers strip Chase of her last committee assignment
12onYourSide, Ned Oliver and Graham MoomawJanuary 19, 2021 (Short)

Lawmakers in the Virginia Senate stripped Sen. Amanda Chase, R-Chesterfield, of her last committee assignment Tuesday.

The post — a seat on the chamber’s typically sleepy panel on local government — is hardly sought after. But the decision, pushed by Democrats seeking to punish Chase for her support of the mob that stormed the U.S. Capitol, prompted a half hour of debate as some in the GOP worried about the precedent the decision might set.

“A concern that I have is, I am not certain where the boundaries will be drawn in the future,” said Senate Minority Leader Tommy Norment, R-James City. He had prefaced his comments by observing that he would not “be defending some of the controversial behavior of the senator from Chesterfield.

Top News

i
Local Government bills passed by General Assembly
Virginia Legislative Information System

Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”)

  • SB 1120: County executive form of government; local budgets
  • SB 1128: Norfolk, City of; amending charter, general updates
  • SB 1136: License plates, special; repeals issuance of certain plates
  • SB 1216: Crewe, Town of; amending charter, changes to charter including town council, elections and powers
  • SB 1152: Appomattox, Town of; amending charter, shifts local elections from May to November, etc
  • SB 1157: Municipal elections; shifting elections to November
  • SB 1207: Solar and energy storage projects; siting agreements throughout the Commonwealth
  • SB 1208: Continuity of government; extends period of time that locality may provide after disaster, etc
  • SB 1267: Covington, City of; amending charter, consolidated school division, salaries
  • SB 1270: Eminent domain; notice of intent to file certificate
  • SB 1298: Tourism improvement districts; authorizes any locality to create
  • SB 1309: Local stormwater assistance; flood mitigation and protection
  • SB 1385: Underground utility facilities; Fairfax County
  • SB 1393: Trees; replacement and conservation during development, effective date
  • SB 1399: Tourism Development Authority; name change
  • SB 1447: Buckingham County; fees for disposal of solid waste
  • SB 1457: Historic sites; urban county executive form of gov’t. (Fairfax County), provisions in its ordinance
i
Local Government 2021 Hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee: 1/18  1/25  2/1  2/15  2/22

Subcommittees:
Charters: 2/15

RSA bill fails in committee
Daily Progess, Gracie Hart BrooksFebruary 9, 2021 (Medium)

A three-county marriage is in the midst of a divorce, senators said Monday.
Members of the Senate Committee on Local Government discussed Senate Bill 1355 during a Monday morning session. The bill would allow any member locality of the Rapidan Service Authority (RSA) to withdraw from the authority regardless of any outstanding bonds. The locality would need to meet certain requirements in order to do so including obtaining the unanimous consent of all holders of any outstanding bonds unless all such bonds have been paid or cashed or United States government obligations have been deposited for payment. Any written obligation to RSA incurred by the locality while a member of the authority would remain and the withdrawing locality would assume ownership and management of any RSA asset located within its limits and assume any debt related to said asset.

The bill was introduced by Senator Emmett Hanger, Jr. who represents the 24th District of which both RSA members Madison and Greene counties belong. Third RSA member Orange County is represented by Senator Bryce Reeves in the 17th District. The introduction of the bill came months after Greene County Supervisors passed a resolution asking to withdraw from the authority. Orange and Madison counties declined. In September, Greene County Supervisors filed two lawsuits against RSA.

November elections are more convenient and less confusing for voters, have massively higher voter turnout, and save taxpayers money compared to standalone May local elections. SB 1157, sponsored by Sen. Lionell Spruill (D-Chesapeake), would consolidate all Virginia local elections to November. It was successfully reported out of the Senate’s Local Government committee on Monday morning, January 18. Del. Cliff Hayes, Del. Kelly Convirs- Fowler, and Del. Nancy Guy are co-sponsoring the bill in the House of Delegates. In the last two days, Del. Shelly Simonds and Del. Clint Jenkins have also agreed to complete co-sponsor paperwork for the bill as well.

Despite separate May local elections costing Virginia taxpayers more, 115 Virginia localities – representing hundreds of thousands of Virginians – hold local elections in May, when voter turnout is abysmally low compared to November elections. Four of the Virginia localities that hold these anti-democratic, low-turnout May elections each have more than 89,000 registered voters: Chesapeake, Norfolk, Newport News, and Hampton.

Standalone municipal elections developed as efforts to decrease immigrant and minority voting. Historically and today, voters in low-turnout May elections tend to be whiter, wealthier, and older than November voters.

The Senate version of Jones’ bill, sponsored by Saslaw, initially contained a clause making it retroactive to March 1, 2020. But Senate committees ultimately stripped retroactivity from all three measures after the state’s Department of Planning and Budget warned the fiscal impact was “indeterminate.”

Localities, especially, have long argued that dating the bill back to March could lead to hundreds of additional COVID-19 claims from their employees, who would now be presumed to have contracted the virus on the job. That’s a financial burden that they — and their insurers — aren’t prepared to shoulder, representatives from cities and counties argued.

“Local governments and risk insurance providers haven’t budgeted for an expansion of the liability to cover additional presumptions related to COVID-19,” Jeremy Bennett, the director of intergovernmental affairs for the Virginia Association of Counties, said during a committee hearing last month, adding that it could have a “multi-million dollar impact.”

Senate lawmakers strip Chase of her last committee assignment
12onYourSide, Ned Oliver and Graham MoomawJanuary 19, 2021 (Short)

Lawmakers in the Virginia Senate stripped Sen. Amanda Chase, R-Chesterfield, of her last committee assignment Tuesday.

The post — a seat on the chamber’s typically sleepy panel on local government — is hardly sought after. But the decision, pushed by Democrats seeking to punish Chase for her support of the mob that stormed the U.S. Capitol, prompted a half hour of debate as some in the GOP worried about the precedent the decision might set.

“A concern that I have is, I am not certain where the boundaries will be drawn in the future,” said Senate Minority Leader Tommy Norment, R-James City. He had prefaced his comments by observing that he would not “be defending some of the controversial behavior of the senator from Chesterfield.

Summary

Meets on: Monday at 9:00 a.m. in Senate Room 3, Capitol

Members: Lewis, Lynwood (Chair) –  John Bell – Amanda Chase  – Bill DeSteph –Siobhan Dunnavant – Barbara Favola – Emmett Hanger  – Ghazala Hashmi  – Janet Howell – Jen Kiggans  –  Jeremy McPike –  Joe Morrissey  – Todd Pillion –Lionell Spruill  – Bill Stanley

(8 Democrats and 7 Republicans)

Subcommittees:

  • Charters

About

From Senate Rules: “A Committee on Local Government, 15 Senators, to consider matters of local government in the counties, cities, towns, regions or districts, planning boards and commissions and authorities, except matters relating to the compensation of elected officeholders, where funds of the Commonwealth are involved”.

Web

VA Legislative Information Systems (LIS)

Bills

Bills reported out 

SB 1120: Provides that a county that has adopted the county executive form of government (Albemarle and Prince William Counties) may carry over unspent funds from year to year for multiyear capital projects and outstanding grants without having to reappropriate the funds.

SB 1128: Changes from a judge or justice of the peace to the city clerk the person to whom newly elected or appointed officials, other than members of the city council, take their oaths of office. Signed by Senate President (02/22/21)

SB 1141: Changes various requirements of the Southeastern Public Service Authority (the Authority) when budgeting or incurring debt, including (i) changing the required five-year overall strategic plan to a financial plan, (ii) specifying that detailed financial plans be made only when incurring long-term debt or issuing new debt, (iii) authorizing other qualified financial consultants instead of a certified public accountant to assist in the creation of the detailed financial plan, (iv) changing from the Authority’s Board of Directors to the Authority the body that performs a due diligence investigation of the appropriateness of issuing new debt, and (v) and raising the permissible threshold for the executive director of the authority to execute or commit the authority to a contract, memorandum of agreement, or memorandum of understanding without acquiring Board approval.

SB 1152: Shifts local elections for the Town of Appomattox from May to November and staggers the election of members of the town council. The bill makes organizational changes to provisions related to the election and appointment of town officers. This bill is identical to HB 1858. Signed by Senate President (02/22/21)

SB 1157: Shifts all municipal elections for city and town council and school board from May to November, beginning with elections held after January 1, 2022. Awaiting Governor Action

SB 1207: Expands existing provisions related to siting agreements and zoning special exceptions for solar projects located in an opportunity zone to include energy storage projects and makes the provisions statewide.

SB 1208: Extends from six to 12 months the period of time after an enemy attack or other disaster that a locality may, by ordinance, provide for a method to assure continuity in its government and requires the ordinance to provide a method for the locality to resume normal governmental authority by the end of that 12-month period.

SB 1216: Makes various changes to the charter for the Town of Crewe in Nottoway County, including (i) staggering town council elections; (ii) changing from three to two the number of town council members required to call a special meeting; and (iii) transferring from the town council to the town manager the authority to appoint, suspend, or terminate the chief of police with majority approval by the town council. The bill also repeals provisions related to the establishment of a municipal court. This bill is identical to HB 1764. Signed by Senate President (02/22/21)

SB 1226: Provides that the Compensation Board shall consider workload totals comprehensively, including the use of diversion programs and specialty dockets, when determining staffing and funding levels for an attorney for the Commonwealth and the office. 

SB 1267:  Amends the charter for the City of Covington to help facilitate the consolidation of the school divisions of the City of Covington and Alleghany County. Signed by Senate President (02/22/21)

SB 1285: Removes the requirement that a building meet the definition of “derelict building,” and instead requires that such building potentially endanger the public health, safety, or welfare in order for the Town of Clifton Forge, the Town of Pulaski, in a conservation and rehabilitation district of the town, the Town of Timberville, and any city to require, by ordinance, the owner or owners of buildings that have been vacant for a continuous period of 12 months or more to register such buildings on an annual basis and pay an annual registration fee not to exceed $100 to defray the cost of processing such registration.

SB 1298: Authorizes any locality to create a local tourism improvement district plan, consisting of fees charged to businesses and used to fund tourism promotion activities and capital improvements. Signed by Senate President (02/22/21)

SB 1309: Authorizes grants from a local Stormwater Management Fund to be used for flood mitigation and protection measures that are part of a comprehensive flood mitigation and protection plan adopted by the locality, and requires such grants, where practicable, to prioritize projects that include nature-based practices. Signed by Senate President (02/22/21)

SB 1385: Removes the sunset on a pilot program allowing a locality that has adopted the urban county executive form of government (Fairfax County) to request an electric utility to place underground electric distribution lines as part of a transportation infrastructure improvement project and changes a number of provisions in the program including (i) expanding the scope to include electric cooperatives, telecommunications providers, cable providers, and other utilities; (ii) expanding the scope to include all underground facilities; (iii) making negotiable in the agreement the costs of relocating the facilities; (iv) placing additional limits on the levy to fund the project and the types of projects for which it may be imposed; and (v) authorizing the locality to secure necessary permits on behalf of the utility or provider.

SB 1393: Gives a locality the ability to exceed general requirements in its tree replacement and conservation ordinances in specific circumstances, including development that impacts stormwater permit requirements, recurrent flooding, formerly redlined areas, and comprehensive plan compliance. Signed by Senate President (02/22/21)

SB 1399: Renames the Tourism Development Authority, also known as the Virginia Coalfield Regional Tourism Development Authority, as the Heart of Appalachia Tourism Authority. House amendments agreed to by Senate (38 Yes to 0 No)

SB 1447: Adds Buckingham County to the list of counties authorized, by ordinance, and after a public hearing, to levy a fee for the management of solid waste not to exceed the actual cost incurred by the county in removing and disposing of solid waste, and the list of counties authorized by ordinance, and after a public hearing, to levy a fee for the disposal of solid waste not to exceed the actual cost incurred by the county in procuring, developing, maintaining, and improving the landfill and for such reserves as may be necessary for capping and closing such landfill in the future.

SB 1457: Provides that any locality utilizing the urban county executive form of government (Fairfax County) may include a provision in its historic preservation ordinance that would allow public access to an historic area, landmark, building, or structure, or land pertaining thereto, or providing that no subdivision shall occur within any historic district unless approved by the review board or, on appeal, by the governing body of the locality as being compatible with the historic nature of such area, landmarks, buildings, or structures therein with regard to any parcel or parcels that collectively are (i) adjacent to a navigable river and a national park and (ii) in part or as a whole subject to an easement granted to the National Park Service or Virginia Outdoors Foundation granted on or after January 1, 1973. Signed by Senate President (02/22/21)

Bills Passed

  • SB 1120: County executive form of government; local budgets
    Provides that a county that has adopted the county executive form of government (Albemarle and Prince William Counties) may carry over unspent funds from year to year for multiyear capital projects and outstanding grants without having to reappropriate the funds. This bill is identical to HB 1949 (2021 Regular Session).
  • SB 1128: Norfolk, City of; amending charter, general updates
    Changes from a judge or justice of the peace to the city clerk the person to whom newly elected or appointed officials, other than members of the city council, take their oaths of office. The bill also repeals a section related to the establishment of a home guard militia in times of war or insurrection, and it removes references to payment of poll taxes in relation to whether a signature is valid on a petition for the nomination of councilmen or in connection with an initiative, referendum, or recall.
  • SB 1136: License plates, special; repeals issuance of certain plates
    Repeals the authorizations for issuance of special license plates no longer issued due to low plate sales, expired authorizations, or inability to issue. In addition, the bill directs the revenue shared for previous issuances and renewals and future renewals of Kids Eat Free special license plates to the Division of Community Nutrition at the Virginia Department of Health.
  • SB 1216: Crewe, Town of; amending charter, changes to charter including town council, elections and powers
    Makes various changes to the charter for the Town of Crewe in Nottoway County, including (i) staggering town council elections; (ii) changing from three to two the number of town council members required to call a special meeting; and (iii) transferring from the town council to the town manager the authority to appoint, suspend, or terminate the chief of police with majority approval by the town council. The bill also repeals provisions related to the establishment of a municipal court. This bill is identical to HB 1764.
  • SB 1152: Appomattox, Town of; amending charter, shifts local elections from May to November, etc
    Shifts local elections for the Town of Appomattox from May to November and staggers the election of members of the town council. The bill makes organizational changes to provisions related to the election and appointment of town officers. This bill is identical to HB 1858.
  • SB 1157: Municipal elections; shifting elections to November
    Shifts all municipal elections for city and town council and school board from May to November, beginning with elections held after January 1, 2022.
  • SB 1207: Solar and energy storage projects; siting agreements throughout the Commonwealth
    Expands existing provisions related to siting agreements and zoning special exceptions for solar projects located in an opportunity zone to include energy storage projects and makes the provisions statewide. The bill provides that its provisions shall not apply to any energy storage project that has received zoning and site plan approval, preliminary or otherwise, from the host locality before January 1, 2021. The bill also provides that its provisions shall not become effective with respect to energy storage projects unless the General Assembly approves legislation that authorizes localities to adopt an ordinance for taxation of energy storage projects such as solar projects with a local option for machinery and tools tax or solar revenue share. This bill is identical to HB 2201.
  • SB 1208: Continuity of government; extends period of time that locality may provide after disaster, etc
    Extends from six to 12 months the period of time after an enemy attack or other disaster that a locality may, by ordinance, provide for a method to assure continuity in its government and requires the ordinance to provide a method for the locality to resume normal governmental authority by the end of that 12-month period.
  • SB 1267: Covington, City of; amending charter, consolidated school division, salaries
    Amends the charter for the City of Covington to help facilitate the consolidation of the school divisions of the City of Covington and Alleghany County. The bill sets out the salary of a school board member of such consolidated school district and shall become effective on July 1, 2022, provided that the consolidation of the City of Covington and Alleghany County school divisions is approved by the Board of Education prior to that date. This bill is identical to HB 2091.
  • SB 1270: Eminent domain; notice of intent to file certificate
    Provides that the notice required to be sent to a landowner prior to an authorized condemnor recording a certificate of take or certificate of deposit shall state that (i) the certificate of take or certificate of deposit will be recorded between 30 and 45 days from the date of the notice and (ii) the property will transfer to the condemnor upon recordation and that the owner has the right to petition the court for distribution of the funds represented in the certificate.
  • SB 1298: Tourism improvement districts; authorizes any locality to create
    Authorizes any locality to create a local tourism improvement district plan, consisting of fees charged to businesses and used to fund tourism promotion activities and capital improvements. Under the bill, the locality is authorized to contract with a nonprofit entity to administer the activities and improvements.
  • SB 1309: Local stormwater assistance; flood mitigation and protection
    Authorizes grants from a local Stormwater Management Fund to be used for flood mitigation and protection measures that are part of a comprehensive flood mitigation and protection plan adopted by the locality, and requires such grants, where practicable, to prioritize projects that include nature-based practices. Current law allows such funds to be used only for the construction, improvement, or repair of a stormwater management facility or for erosion and sediment control.
  • SB 1385: Underground utility facilities; Fairfax County
    Removes the sunset on a pilot program allowing a locality that has adopted the urban county executive form of government (Fairfax County) to request an electric utility to place underground electric distribution lines as part of a transportation infrastructure improvement project and changes a number of provisions in the program including (i) expanding the scope to include electric cooperatives, telecommunications providers, cable providers, and other utilities; (ii) expanding the scope to include all underground facilities; (iii) making negotiable in the agreement the costs of relocating the facilities; (iv) placing additional limits on the levy to fund the project and the types of projects for which it may be imposed; and (v) authorizing the locality to secure necessary permits on behalf of the utility or provider.
  • SB 1393Trees; replacement and conservation during development, effective date
    Gives a locality the ability to exceed general requirements in its tree replacement and conservation ordinances in specific circumstances, including development that impacts stormwater permit requirements, recurrent flooding, formerly redlined areas, and comprehensive plan compliance. The bill also directs the Secretary of Natural Resources and Secretary of Agriculture and Forestry to convene a stakeholder work group for the purpose of developing and providing recommendations to state and local governments related to policies that encourage the conservation of mature trees and tree cover on sites being developed, increase tree canopy cover in communities, and encourage the planting of trees. The bill will not become effective unless reenacted by the 2022 Session of the General Assembly, but the stakeholder work group is effective in due course. This bill is identical to HB 2042.
  • SB 1399: Tourism Development Authority; name change
    Renames the Tourism Development Authority, also known as the Virginia Coalfield Regional Tourism Development Authority, as the Heart of Appalachia Tourism Authority. The bill contains technical amendments.
  • SB 1447: Buckingham County; fees for disposal of solid waste
    Adds Buckingham County to the list of counties authorized, by ordinance and after a public hearing, to levy a fee for the management of solid waste not to exceed the actual cost incurred by the county in removing and disposing of solid waste and to the list of counties authorized, by ordinance and after a public hearing, to levy a fee for the disposal of solid waste not to exceed the actual cost incurred by the county in procuring, developing, maintaining, and improving the landfill and for such reserves as may be necessary for capping and closing such landfill in the future.
  • SB 1457: Historic sites; urban county executive form of gov’t. (Fairfax County), provisions in its ordinance
    Provides that any locality utilizing the urban county executive form of government (Fairfax County) may include a provision in its historic preservation ordinance that would allow public access to an historic area, landmark, building, or structure, or land pertaining thereto, or providing that no subdivision shall occur within any historic district unless approved by the review board or, on appeal, by the governing body of the locality as being compatible with the historic nature of such area, landmarks, buildings, or structures therein with regard to any parcel or parcels that collectively are (i) adjacent to a navigable river and a national park and (ii) in part or as a whole subject to an easement granted to the National Park Service or Virginia Outdoors Foundation granted on or after January 1, 1973.

Commissions & Boards

Virginia Housing Commission

The Virginia Housing Commission exists to study and provide recommendations to ensure and foster the availability of safe, sound and affordable housing for every Virginian.

The Commission may also study and make recommendations relating to such other housing, real property, and community development issues as it may be called upon to consider or as may be desirable.

Capitol Square Preservation Council

Source: Website

Created by the General Assembly in 1999, the Capitol Square Preservation Council consists of thirteen individuals with expertise in art, architecture, landscape architecture, history, preservation, and administration. The Secretary of Administration, Clerk of the House of Delegates, and Clerk of the Senate serve as ex-officio members. This group is charged with planning and review of projects that affect the State Capitol, its historic artifacts, other historic buildings on or adjacent to Capitol Square, and the landscape and archaeological features of Capitol Square.

Bristol Virginia Utilities Authority Board of Directors

Source: Webpage

BVU Authority; Board powers, officers; broadband; FOIA. Reduces from nine to seven the number of directors on the Board of Directors (the Board) of the BVU Authority (the Authority) and alters the methods of their appointment and their powers and duties. The bill  institutes in their place a board of seven directors, comprising (i) one citizen of each of the following localities with its appointing authority: the City of Bristol, appointed by the Speaker of the House of Delegates; the City of Bristol, appointed by the Board; Scott County, appointed by the Speaker of the House of Delegates; and Washington County, appointed by the Senate Committee on Rules, and (ii) one member of the governing body of each of the localities of the City of Bristol, the Town of Abingdon, and Washington County, appointed by their respective governing bodies. The citizen of the City of Bristol who is appointed by the Board is required to be engaged in business and may be appointed initially by the Bristol City Council.

Fort Monroe Authority Board of Trustees

Source: Webpage

To govern the Fort Monroe Authority

Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation Board of Trustees

Source: Webpage

Do all things necessary and proper to further an appreciation of the contributions of the first permanent English-speaking settlers and their American Indian neighbors of Virginia and the United States to the building of our Commonwealth and nation, to commemorate the winning of American independence on the battlefield at Yorktown, and to enhance our understanding of the making of the United States Constitution and Bill of Rights, including Virginia’s role in shaping the fundamental principles of the American constitutional system.

Virginia Recreational Facilities Authority

Source: Webpage

To (i) provide a high quality recreational attraction in the western part of the Commonwealth; (ii) expand the historical knowledge of adults and children; (iii) promote tourism and economic development in the Commonwealth; (iv) set aside and conserve scenic and natural areas along the Roanoke River and preserve open-space lands; and (v) enhance and expand research and educational programs

X
Privileges and Elections Committee 2Privileges and Elections Committee (Senate)

Meets on: Tuesday at 15 minutes after adjournment in Senate Room 3, The Capitol

Members: Creigh Deeds (Chair)  –  John Bell – Jennifer Boysko – Adam Ebbin –  Janet Howell – Monty Mason   Jennifer McClellan  –  Ryan McDougle – Mark Peake – Bryce Reeves –  Frank Ruff – Lionell Spruill – Scott Surovell   – Jill Vogel

(9 Democrats and 5 Republicans)

Subcommittees: None

 

i
Privileges and Elections bills passed by General Assembly
Virginia Legislative Information System

Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”)

  • SB 1097: Absentee voting; witness signature not required
  • SB 1111: Elections; preservation of order at the polls, powers of officers of election
  • SB 1148: Elections; date of June primary election
  • SB 1239: Absentee voting; third-party absentee ballot assembly and distribution
  • SB 1245: Absentee voting; establishment of drop-off locations preprocessing returned absentee ballots
  • SB 1281: General registrar; qualifications, residency
  • SB 1331: Absentee voting; accessibility for voters with a visual impairment or print disability
  • SB 1395: Discrimination; prohibited in voting and elections administration, etc
  • SJ 270: Constitutional amendment; marriage (first reference)
i
Privileges and Elections 2021 Hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee: 1/19  1/26  2/4 2/16

Lawmakers kill bill calling for transparency in redistricting commission
NBC29.com, Anya SczerzenieFebruary 19, 2021 (Short)

RICHMOND, Va. — The Virginia Senate killed a House proposal to expand access to the commonwealth’s new redistricting commission and help make the process more transparent and democratic.

House Bill 2082, patroned by Del. Mark Levine, D-Alexandria, would have required the redistricting commission meetings to be advertised and accessible to the public. The commission will draw the commonwealth’s electoral districts every 10 years. The General Assembly previously drew the districts.

The bill was passed by indefinitely in the Senate Privileges and Elections committee after passing the House with a 55-41 vote.

“During the debates on the commission, I kept saying ‘There’s no transparency here, there’s no transparency,’” Levine said. “Well, there wasn’t, and there isn’t. Without my legislation, the commission can meet in a dark room.

“If something as simple as avoiding the appearance of corruption in Virginia can’t pass, then we must seriously consider whether we have the right people representing us,” said Clean Virginia Executive Director Brennan Gilmore. “This bill would have caught Virginia up to 47 other states and the federal government. Yet, despite the bill conforming to widely accepted federal language, a majority of Virginia’s Senators couldn’t get the job done.”

The bill, introduced by Delegate Marcus Simon, passed the House unanimously on Feb. 1. HB 1952 defined “personal use” using the federal “irrespective test,” which states that any expense incurred that would exist irrespective of the candidate’s campaign for office is deemed ineligible for use of campaign funds, with the exception for childcare expenses.

The motion to refer the bill back to the Senate Privileges and Elections Committee occurred against the expressed wishes of Senator Creigh Deeds, the Committee Chair, who asked on the floor that Senators pass the bill instead.

Virginia Senate panel advances campaign finance reform bill
Tulsa World, Sarah RankinFebruary 16, 2021 (Short)

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — A Virginia Senate committee advanced a House measure Tuesday that would prevent politicians from putting campaign funds toward personal uses, with an exception for child care-related expenses.

The bill’s continued advancement this year seems to be a breakthrough on an issue lawmakers have previously been reluctant to tackle. Virginia has one of the least restrictive and policed campaign finance systems in the country, with lawmakers only barred from using campaign funds for personal use once they close out their accounts.

The measure’s sponsor, Democratic Del. Marcus Simon, said the matter is one of both optics and integrity.

During a legislative hearing, Locke said voting is a fundamental right that shouldn’t be taken away, and argued that the policy’s racist origins should be addressed by scrapping it completely. A coalition of civil rights groups backed Locke’s proposal.

It was ultimately amended to mirror a proposal from the House that would automatically restore voting rights for people who complete their prison sentences. House Majority Leader Charniele Herring, D-Alexandria, introduced that resolution.
“Automatic restoration of rights is not racial justice,” Locke said before the Senate Privileges and Elections Committee on Feb. 4. “It is beyond dispute that felony disenfranchisement is as Jim Crow as poll taxes.

Top News

i
Privileges and Elections bills passed by General Assembly
Virginia Legislative Information System

Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”)

  • SB 1097: Absentee voting; witness signature not required
  • SB 1111: Elections; preservation of order at the polls, powers of officers of election
  • SB 1148: Elections; date of June primary election
  • SB 1239: Absentee voting; third-party absentee ballot assembly and distribution
  • SB 1245: Absentee voting; establishment of drop-off locations preprocessing returned absentee ballots
  • SB 1281: General registrar; qualifications, residency
  • SB 1331: Absentee voting; accessibility for voters with a visual impairment or print disability
  • SB 1395: Discrimination; prohibited in voting and elections administration, etc
  • SJ 270: Constitutional amendment; marriage (first reference)
i
Privileges and Elections 2021 Hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee: 1/19  1/26  2/4 2/16

Lawmakers kill bill calling for transparency in redistricting commission
NBC29.com, Anya SczerzenieFebruary 19, 2021 (Short)

RICHMOND, Va. — The Virginia Senate killed a House proposal to expand access to the commonwealth’s new redistricting commission and help make the process more transparent and democratic.

House Bill 2082, patroned by Del. Mark Levine, D-Alexandria, would have required the redistricting commission meetings to be advertised and accessible to the public. The commission will draw the commonwealth’s electoral districts every 10 years. The General Assembly previously drew the districts.

The bill was passed by indefinitely in the Senate Privileges and Elections committee after passing the House with a 55-41 vote.

“During the debates on the commission, I kept saying ‘There’s no transparency here, there’s no transparency,’” Levine said. “Well, there wasn’t, and there isn’t. Without my legislation, the commission can meet in a dark room.

“If something as simple as avoiding the appearance of corruption in Virginia can’t pass, then we must seriously consider whether we have the right people representing us,” said Clean Virginia Executive Director Brennan Gilmore. “This bill would have caught Virginia up to 47 other states and the federal government. Yet, despite the bill conforming to widely accepted federal language, a majority of Virginia’s Senators couldn’t get the job done.”

The bill, introduced by Delegate Marcus Simon, passed the House unanimously on Feb. 1. HB 1952 defined “personal use” using the federal “irrespective test,” which states that any expense incurred that would exist irrespective of the candidate’s campaign for office is deemed ineligible for use of campaign funds, with the exception for childcare expenses.

The motion to refer the bill back to the Senate Privileges and Elections Committee occurred against the expressed wishes of Senator Creigh Deeds, the Committee Chair, who asked on the floor that Senators pass the bill instead.

Virginia Senate panel advances campaign finance reform bill
Tulsa World, Sarah RankinFebruary 16, 2021 (Short)

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — A Virginia Senate committee advanced a House measure Tuesday that would prevent politicians from putting campaign funds toward personal uses, with an exception for child care-related expenses.

The bill’s continued advancement this year seems to be a breakthrough on an issue lawmakers have previously been reluctant to tackle. Virginia has one of the least restrictive and policed campaign finance systems in the country, with lawmakers only barred from using campaign funds for personal use once they close out their accounts.

The measure’s sponsor, Democratic Del. Marcus Simon, said the matter is one of both optics and integrity.

During a legislative hearing, Locke said voting is a fundamental right that shouldn’t be taken away, and argued that the policy’s racist origins should be addressed by scrapping it completely. A coalition of civil rights groups backed Locke’s proposal.

It was ultimately amended to mirror a proposal from the House that would automatically restore voting rights for people who complete their prison sentences. House Majority Leader Charniele Herring, D-Alexandria, introduced that resolution.
“Automatic restoration of rights is not racial justice,” Locke said before the Senate Privileges and Elections Committee on Feb. 4. “It is beyond dispute that felony disenfranchisement is as Jim Crow as poll taxes.

Summary

Meets on: Tuesday at 15 minutes after adjournment in Senate Room 3, The Capitol

Members: Creigh Deeds (Chair)  –  John Bell – Jennifer Boysko – Adam Ebbin –  Janet Howell – Monty Mason   Jennifer McClellan  –  Ryan McDougle – Mark Peake – Bryce Reeves –  Frank Ruff – Lionell Spruill – Scott Surovell   – Jill Vogel

(9 Democrats and 5 Republicans)

Subcommittees: None

 

About

From Senate Rules: “A Committee on Privileges and Elections, 15 Senators, to consider matters concerning voting; apportionment; conflict of interests, except those concerning members of the judiciary or solely the legal profession, provided that any such matter, after being reported by the Committee, shall be rereferred by the Committee to the Committee for Courts of Justice for consideration of the matters relating only to members of the judiciary or solely to the legal profession; constitutional amendments; elections; elected officeholders; reprimand, censure, or expulsion of a Senator; and nominations and appointments to any office or position in the Commonwealth (except Justices and Judges of the Commonwealth).”.

It shall consider all grievances and propositions, federal relations and interstate matters. It shall examine the oath taken by each Senator and the certificate of election furnished by the proper office and report thereon to the Senate. It shall review and report as may be required in cases involving financial disclosure statements and shall recommend disciplinary action by majority vote where appropriate. It shall report in all cases involving contested elections the principles and reasons upon which their resolves are founded. It shall determine and report on all matters referred to it by the Senate Ethics Advisory Panel as set forth in the statutes.Whenever the Clerk receives a report of the Senate Ethics Advisory Panel or a resolution seeking the reprimand, censure, or expulsion of a Senator, the report shall be referred forthwith to the Committee on Privileges and Elections. The Committee shall consider the matter, conduct such hearings as it shall deem necessary, and, in all cases report its determination of the matter, together with its recommendations and reasons for its resolves, to the Senate. If the Committee deems disciplinary action warranted, it shall report a resolution offered by a member of the Committee to express such action. Any such resolution reported by the Committee shall be a privileged matter. The Senate as a whole shall then consider the resolution, and, by recorded vote, either defeat the resolution or take one or more of the following actions: (i) reprimand the Senator with a majority vote of the Senators present and voting; (ii) censure the Senator and place the Senator last in seniority with a majority vote of the elected membership of the Senate; (iii) expel the Senator with a two-thirds vote of the elected membership of the Senate; or (iv) refer the matter to the Attorney General f or appropriate action with a majority vote of the Senators present and voting, in the event the Senate finds a knowing violation of § 30-108 or subsection C of § 30-110 of the Code of Virginia

Web

VA Legislative Information Systems (LIS)

Bills

Bills in committee  

(none at this time)

Bills reported out 

SB 1097: Provides that a voter’s failure to have a witness sign the absentee ballot envelope for any election held during a declared state of emergency related to a communicable disease of public health threat shall not be considered a material omission and shall not render the ballot void. 

SB 1109: Provides for a statewide referendum on the question of whether the General Assembly shall issue state general obligation bonds in the amount of $3 billion for the purpose of K-12 school building construction, repair, or other capital projects related to the modernization of school facilities.

SB 1111: Removes the power of officers of election, in the event that no law-enforcement officer is in attendance, to appoint a person who is not a law-enforcement officer to have all the powers of a law enforcement officer within the polling place and the prohibited area.

SB 1148: Changes the date of the primary election held in June from the second Tuesday in June to the third Tuesday in June.

SB 1153: Provides that absentee ballots processed at a central absentee precinct must be sorted by the precinct to which the voter who cast the absentee ballot is assigned and that the resulting vote totals from such ballots must be reported separately for each voter precinct.

SB 1239: Permits a general registrar to contract with a third party for the printing, assembly, and mailing of absentee ballots.

SB 1245: Requires certain actions to be taken to process absentee ballots returned before the day of an election, including verifying the correct completion of the voter affirmation statement, and provides for an opportunity for an absentee voter to make corrections to the statement in certain circumstances.

SB 1246: Requires certain actions to be taken to process absentee ballots that are returned by mail before election day.

SB 1281: Exempts counties and cities with a population of 50,000 or less from the requirement that a person appointed to serve as a general registrar must be a qualified voter of the county or city for which he is appointed. 

SB 1331: Requires the Department of Elections to make available to all localities a tool to allow voters with a visual impairment or print disability to electronically and accessibly receive and mark his absentee ballot using screen reader assistive technology.

SB 1395: Prohibits any voting qualification or any standard, practice, or procedure related to voting from being imposed or applied in a manner that results in the denial or abridgment of the right of any United States citizen to vote based on his race or color or membership in a language minority group.

SB 1422: Requires the State Registrar of Vital Records to transmit to the Department of Elections a weekly list of decedents from the previous week. 

SB 1444: Changes the reporting requirement from any single contribution of $1,000 or more to all financial activity of a campaign committee of a candidate for a statewide office or the General Assembly knowingly received or reported by the candidate or his treasurer on behalf of his candidacy during the period beginning January 1 and ending on the day immediately before the first day of a regular session of the General Assembly to be reported to the State Board of Elections not later than January 15

SJ 270: Repeals the constitutional provision defining marriage as only a union between one man and one woman as well as the related provisions that are no longer valid as a result of the United States Supreme Court decision in Obergefell v. Hodges, 576 U.S. 644 (2015).

SJ 272: Establishes that a person who meets the constitutional qualifications for voters has the fundamental right to vote and that such right cannot be abridged by law, except in the case of persons convicted of a felony and persons adjudicated to lack the capacity to understand the act of voting.

SJ 275: Requires the General Assembly to provide for a system of public schools in the Commonwealth with equitable educational opportunities for all children and to ensure that all school-age children are provided with equitable educational opportunities.

SJ 289: Allows easements on public property to be granted in perpetuity to a public body, political subdivision, or authority of the Commonwealth or to the United States of America or any of its departments or agencies. 

SJ 310: Amends the Constitution of Virginia to provide that a regular session of the General Assembly convened in an odd-numbered year shall continue for no longer than 46 days and may be extended for a period not exceeding 14 days. 

SJ 322: Requests the Secretary of Administration to oversee and develop a charter and directives for the State Board of Elections to form a working group to study the implementation of electronic return of voted military-overseas ballots.

Bills Passed

  • SB 1097: Absentee voting; witness signature not required
    Provides that a voter’s failure to have a witness sign the absentee ballot envelope for any election held during a declared state of emergency related to a communicable disease of public health threat shall not be considered a material omission and shall not render the ballot void. The bill directs the Department of Elections to convene a work group to consider and evaluate alternatives to the witness signature requirement for election officials to use to verify that an absentee ballot was cast by the voter identified as having requested and received such ballot.
  • SB 1111: Elections; preservation of order at the polls, powers of officers of election
    Removes the power of officers of election, in the event that no law-enforcement officer is in attendance, to appoint a person who is not a law-enforcement officer to have all the powers of a law-enforcement officer within the polling place and the prohibited area.
  • SB 1148: Elections; date of June primary election
    Changes the date of the primary election held in June from the second Tuesday in June to the third Tuesday in June. The bill also changes candidate filing deadlines to reflect the change of date.
  • SB 1239: Absentee voting; third-party absentee ballot assembly and distribution
    Permits a general registrar to contract with a third party for the printing, assembly, and mailing of absentee ballots. The bill directs the State Board of Elections to adopt emergency regulations to implement the provisions of the bill and for those regulations to include processes to ensure secure and timely delivery of voter information to contractors and reports of mailed absentee ballots from contractors.
  • SB 1245: Absentee voting; establishment of drop-off locations preprocessing returned absentee ballots
    Requires certain actions to be taken to process absentee ballots returned before the day of an election, including verifying the correct completion of the voter affirmation statement, and provides for an opportunity for an absentee voter to make corrections to the statement in certain circumstances. The bill requires the establishment of drop-off locations. Additionally, a central absentee voter precinct is required to be established in each locality; currently, establishment is optional. On the day of the election, officers of election are required to begin processing absentee ballots in the central absentee voter precincts prior to the close of polls, but no ballot vote counts are permitted to be transmitted outside of the central absentee voter precinct prior to the close of polls; a violation of such prohibition is a Class 1 misdemeanor. The bill requires a ballot marking tool with screen reader assistive technology to be made available for absentee voters with a print disability. The Department of Elections is directed to convene a work group to consider and evaluate methods for sorting absentee ballots by precinct and reporting absentee ballot totals by precincts.
  • SB 1281: General registrar; qualifications, residency
    Exempts counties and cities with a population of 50,000 or less from the requirement that a person appointed to serve as a general registrar must be a qualified voter of the county or city for which he is appointed. Currently, such exemption applies to counties and cities with a population of 25,000 or less.
  • SB 1331: Absentee voting; accessibility for voters with a visual impairment or print disability
    Requires the Department of Elections to make available to all localities a tool to allow voters with a visual impairment or print disability to electronically and accessibly receive and mark absentee ballots using screen reader assistive technology. On receipt of an application for an absentee ballot from an applicant who indicates that he will require assistance due to a visual impairment or print disability, the general registrar is required to offer to provide to the applicant the ballot marking tool with screen reader assistive technology.
  • SB 1395: Discrimination; prohibited in voting and elections administration, etc
    Prohibits any voting qualification or any standard, practice, or procedure related to voting from being imposed or applied in a manner that results in the denial or abridgment of the right of any United States citizen to vote based on his race or color or membership in a language minority group. The bill further prohibits at-large methods of election from being imposed or applied in a locality in a manner that impairs the ability of a protected class, defined in the bill, to elect candidates of its choice or to influence the outcome of an election, by diluting or abridging the rights of voters who are members of a protected class. Prior to enacting or administering a covered practice, defined in the bill, the governing body of a locality is required to publish the proposed covered practice and accept public comment for a minimum of 30 days on the proposed covered practice; after the public comment period, a 30-day waiting period is required. During this period, any person who will be subject to or affected by the covered practice may challenge the covered practice as (i) having the purpose or effect of denying or abridging the right to vote on the basis of race or color or membership in a language minority group or (ii) resulting in the retrogression in the position of members of a racial or ethnic group with respect to their effective exercise of the electoral franchise. The bill permits the local governing body to instead submit the proposed covered practice to the Office of the Attorney General for issuance of a certification of no objection and, once such certification is issued, to enact or administer the covered practice. Certain unlawful actions, including knowingly communicating false information to voters, that are currently subject to criminal penalties will create civil causes of action under the bill. The bill authorizes the Attorney General to commence civil actions when there is reasonable cause to believe that a violation of an election law has occurred and the rights of any voter or group of voters have been affected by the violation. Civil penalties assessed as a result of such action are payable to the Voter Education and Outreach Fund, established by the bill. Current provisions related to language minority accessibility are moved to a newly created chapter relating to the rights of voters.
  • SJ 270: Constitutional amendment; marriage (first reference)
    Repeals the constitutional provision defining marriage as only a union between one man and one woman as well as the related provisions that are no longer valid as a result of the United States Supreme Court decision in Obergefell v. Hodges, 576 U.S. 644 (2015). The amendment provides that the right to marry is a fundamental right inherent in the liberty of persons and requires the Commonwealth and its political subdivisions and agents to issue marriage licenses, recognize marriages, and treat all marriages equally under the law, regardless of the sex or gender of the parties to the marriage. Religious organizations and clergy acting in their religious capacity have the right to refuse to perform any marriage.

Commissions

Commission on Civic Education

Source: Webpage

The purposes of the Commission are to (i) educate students on the importance of citizen involvement in a representative democracy, (ii) promote the study of state and local government among the Commonwealth’s citizenry, and (iii) enhance communication and collaboration among organizations in the Commonwealth that conduct civics education.

X
Rehabilitation and Social ServicesRehabilitation and Social Services

Meets on:  Friday at 8:30 a.m. in Senate Room A, Pocahontas Building

Members: Barbara Favola (Chair) – Jennifer Boysko – John Cosgrove – Bill DeSteph – Emmett Hanger – Jen Kiggans – Mamie Locke – Monty Mason – Ryan McDougle – Jeremy McPike –  Joe Morrissey – Bryce Reeves – Lionell  Spruill – Scott Surovell

(8 Democrats and 6 Republicans)

Subcommittees:

  • ABC
  • Marijuana
  • Social Services

Below is a short summary by Chair Barbara Favola about what the Rehabilitation and Social Services committee does.

Rehab and Social Services Committee – Host, Senator Barbara Favola
May 20, 2021 – 6:00 pm to 7:00 pm (ET)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lQBi2FKpr6g

This aircast was focused on the recent activities of the Senate Rehabilitation and Social Services committee. A recording of this livestream is also archived in the Virginia onAir YouTube channel. The links below will open the YouTube video as a new tab and start at the designated time.

For more information:Rehabilitation and Social Services Committee Post

Curator:

Host:

  • Senator Barbara Favola, Chair, Rehabilitation and Social Services Committee – district31@senate.virginia.gov

Producer:

Lead Sponsor: US onAir Network

i

Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”)

  • SB 1297: Emergency order for adult protective services; acts of violence, etc., or financial exploitation
  • SB 1299: Alcoholic beverage control; sale and delivery of mixed beverages and pre-mixed wine
  • SB 1300: Inmates; Board of Local and Regional Jails to review services provided during pregnancy, etc
  • SB 1321: Confirmatory adoption; expands the stepparent adoption provisions
  • SB 1328: State-Funded Kinship Guardianship Assistance program; created
  • SB 1366: Aging services; economic and social needs
  • SB 1397: Parole and conditional release; notice by electronic means and certification
  • SB 1428: Alcoholic beverage control; operation of government stores, sale of low alcohol beverage coolers
  • SB 1471: Alcoholic beverage control; local special events license, taxes and fees
  • SB 1472: Individuals w/ intellectual & developmental disabilities; DMAS to study use of virtual support, etc
i
Rehabilitation and Social Services 2021 Hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee:  1/15 1/22 1/29 2/12 2/16  2/19

Subcommittees:
ABC: none during 2021 Session
Marijuana: 1/19
Social Service and Corrections: 1/20

Virginia senate defeats bill to restore parole
WSLS, Denise LavoieJanuary 29, 2021 (Medium)

RICHMOND, Va. – A bill that would have restored parole in Virginia was killed Friday after lawmakers heard emotional testimony from family members of crime victims who pleaded with them to guarantee their assailants would stay locked up.

The Senate Rehabilitation and Social Services Committee voted to send the measure to the Virginia State Crime Commission for study, ending the bill’s chances of passing this year.

Virginia abolished discretionary parole in 1995 and began requiring offenders to serve at least 85 percent of their sentences.

A Virginia Senate committee on Friday approved a bill to legalize marijuana in the Commonwealth, bringing the proposal one step closer to a full floor vote. Before advancing the legislation to another panel, lawmakers defeated a proposal to remove home cultivation rights for cannabis.

The Senate Rehabilitation and Social Services Committee approved the legislation in a 8-7 vote. Members also accepted a series of recommended amendments from a newly formed subcommittee that’s singularly focused on marijuana policy and that held two hearings on the bill earlier this week.

The legislation, which was unveiled by Gov. Ralph Northam (D) last week and is being carried by top Senate and House leaders, would create a system of regulated and taxed marijuana sales and production, and allow adults 21 and older to purchase and possess up to one ounce of cannabis and cultivate up to four plants for personal use, two of which could be mature.

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Nine of the 11 Virginia state senators who voted against a bill that would have abolished for-profit prison management by 2024 received campaign contributions ahead of this year’s General Assembly session from the company operating the state’s only privately run facility, according to campaign finance reports.

On Jan. 15, the Virginia Senate Rehabilitation and Social Services Committee debated SB 1179, proposed by Sen. Adam Ebbin (D-Alexandria), that sought to end the for-profit prison management system in the commonwealth by stripping the authority of the director of Virginia’s Department of Corrections to enter into contracts with private prison operators.

The only prison in Virginia not operated by the Department of Corrections is Lawrenceville Correctional Center, which has been run by GEO Group, Inc., a Florida-based private prison contractor, since 2003.

Proposal to end for-profit prison management fails in Virginia Senate
Virginia Mercury, Ned OliverJanuary 15, 2021 (Short)

A proposal to bring Virginia’s only privately operated prison under state management failed in the General Assembly on Friday when it was voted down by members of the Senate’s Rehabilitation and Social Services Committee.

The decision means GEO Group, a publicly traded corporation based in Florida, will likely continue to oversee the Lawrenceville Correctional Center in Brunswick County, where advocates and some lawmakers worried persistent staffing shortages have jeopardized inmate safety.

“They do not hold up their end of the contract as far as medical, dental,” said Franchesca Hylton, who told lawmakers during a hearing on the legislation that her husband is an inmate at the facility and was not getting proper care for his heart condition. “There’s a lot of stuff going on at that facility that shouldn’t be.”

Top News

Rehab and Social Services Committee – Host, Senator Barbara Favola
May 20, 2021 – 6:00 pm to 7:00 pm (ET)

This aircast was focused on the recent activities of the Senate Rehabilitation and Social Services committee. A recording of this livestream is also archived in the Virginia onAir YouTube channel. The links below will open the YouTube video as a new tab and start at the designated time.

For more information:Rehabilitation and Social Services Committee Post

Curator:

Host:

  • Senator Barbara Favola, Chair, Rehabilitation and Social Services Committee – district31@senate.virginia.gov

Producer:

Lead Sponsor: US onAir Network

i

Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”)

  • SB 1297: Emergency order for adult protective services; acts of violence, etc., or financial exploitation
  • SB 1299: Alcoholic beverage control; sale and delivery of mixed beverages and pre-mixed wine
  • SB 1300: Inmates; Board of Local and Regional Jails to review services provided during pregnancy, etc
  • SB 1321: Confirmatory adoption; expands the stepparent adoption provisions
  • SB 1328: State-Funded Kinship Guardianship Assistance program; created
  • SB 1366: Aging services; economic and social needs
  • SB 1397: Parole and conditional release; notice by electronic means and certification
  • SB 1428: Alcoholic beverage control; operation of government stores, sale of low alcohol beverage coolers
  • SB 1471: Alcoholic beverage control; local special events license, taxes and fees
  • SB 1472: Individuals w/ intellectual & developmental disabilities; DMAS to study use of virtual support, etc
i
Rehabilitation and Social Services 2021 Hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee:  1/15 1/22 1/29 2/12 2/16  2/19

Subcommittees:
ABC: none during 2021 Session
Marijuana: 1/19
Social Service and Corrections: 1/20

Virginia senate defeats bill to restore parole
WSLS, Denise LavoieJanuary 29, 2021 (Medium)

RICHMOND, Va. – A bill that would have restored parole in Virginia was killed Friday after lawmakers heard emotional testimony from family members of crime victims who pleaded with them to guarantee their assailants would stay locked up.

The Senate Rehabilitation and Social Services Committee voted to send the measure to the Virginia State Crime Commission for study, ending the bill’s chances of passing this year.

Virginia abolished discretionary parole in 1995 and began requiring offenders to serve at least 85 percent of their sentences.

A Virginia Senate committee on Friday approved a bill to legalize marijuana in the Commonwealth, bringing the proposal one step closer to a full floor vote. Before advancing the legislation to another panel, lawmakers defeated a proposal to remove home cultivation rights for cannabis.

The Senate Rehabilitation and Social Services Committee approved the legislation in a 8-7 vote. Members also accepted a series of recommended amendments from a newly formed subcommittee that’s singularly focused on marijuana policy and that held two hearings on the bill earlier this week.

The legislation, which was unveiled by Gov. Ralph Northam (D) last week and is being carried by top Senate and House leaders, would create a system of regulated and taxed marijuana sales and production, and allow adults 21 and older to purchase and possess up to one ounce of cannabis and cultivate up to four plants for personal use, two of which could be mature.

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Nine of the 11 Virginia state senators who voted against a bill that would have abolished for-profit prison management by 2024 received campaign contributions ahead of this year’s General Assembly session from the company operating the state’s only privately run facility, according to campaign finance reports.

On Jan. 15, the Virginia Senate Rehabilitation and Social Services Committee debated SB 1179, proposed by Sen. Adam Ebbin (D-Alexandria), that sought to end the for-profit prison management system in the commonwealth by stripping the authority of the director of Virginia’s Department of Corrections to enter into contracts with private prison operators.

The only prison in Virginia not operated by the Department of Corrections is Lawrenceville Correctional Center, which has been run by GEO Group, Inc., a Florida-based private prison contractor, since 2003.

Proposal to end for-profit prison management fails in Virginia Senate
Virginia Mercury, Ned OliverJanuary 15, 2021 (Short)

A proposal to bring Virginia’s only privately operated prison under state management failed in the General Assembly on Friday when it was voted down by members of the Senate’s Rehabilitation and Social Services Committee.

The decision means GEO Group, a publicly traded corporation based in Florida, will likely continue to oversee the Lawrenceville Correctional Center in Brunswick County, where advocates and some lawmakers worried persistent staffing shortages have jeopardized inmate safety.

“They do not hold up their end of the contract as far as medical, dental,” said Franchesca Hylton, who told lawmakers during a hearing on the legislation that her husband is an inmate at the facility and was not getting proper care for his heart condition. “There’s a lot of stuff going on at that facility that shouldn’t be.”

Summary

Meets on:  Friday at 8:30 a.m. in Senate Room A, Pocahontas Building

Members: Barbara Favola (Chair) – Jennifer Boysko – John Cosgrove – Bill DeSteph – Emmett Hanger – Jen Kiggans – Mamie Locke – Monty Mason – Ryan McDougle – Jeremy McPike –  Joe Morrissey – Bryce Reeves – Lionell  Spruill – Scott Surovell

(8 Democrats and 6 Republicans)

Subcommittees:

  • ABC
  • Marijuana
  • Social Services

Below is a short summary by Chair Barbara Favola about what the Rehabilitation and Social Services committee does.

About

From Senate Rules: “A Committee on Rehabilitation and Social Services, 15 Senators, to consider matters concerning alcoholic beverages; correctional and penal institutions; morals; social services and welfare; and substance abuse.”.

Web

VA Legislative Information Systems (LIS)

Bills

(none at this time)

Bills reported out 

SB 1104: Provides that the Department of Corrections shall release a prisoner no sooner than 21 business days after the date of notification by the Virginia Parole Board (the Board) to the appropriate attorney for the Commonwealth of the decision to grant parole. 

SB 1125: Requires the Parole Board, within seven days of making any decision regarding the parole of a prisoner, to provide written or electronic notice of such decision to the victim of the crime for which the prisoner was incarcerated, unless the victim has submitted a written request to forgo such notice.

SB 1297: Allows the circuit court, upon a finding that an incapacitated adult has been, within a reasonable period of time, subjected to an act of violence, force, or threat or been subjected to financial exploitation, to include in an emergency order for adult protective services one or more of the following conditions to be imposed on the alleged perpetrator: (i) a prohibition on acts of violence, force, or threat or criminal offenses that may result in injury to person or property; (ii) a prohibition on such other contacts by the alleged perpetrator with the adult or the adult’s family or household members as the court deems necessary for the health and safety of such persons; or (iii) such other conditions as the court deems necessary to prevent (a) acts of violence, force, or threat; (b) criminal offenses that may result in injury to persons or property; (c) communication or other contact of any kind by the alleged perpetrator; or (d) financial exploitation by the alleged perpetrator. The bill provides that any person who violates any such condition is guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.

SB 1299: Allows distillers that have been appointed as agents of the Board of Directors (the Board) of the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority (the Authority), mixed beverage restaurant licensees, and limited mixed beverage restaurant licensees to sell mixed beverages for off-premises consumption and deliver such mixed beverages to consumers subject to requirements set forth in the bill. 

SB 1300: Directs the Board of Local and Regional Jails (the Board), in consultation with a stakeholder work group, to (i) identify and analyze all obstetric and gynecological services and any other services provided by local and regional jails to inmates during pregnancy, pregnancy termination, labor and delivery, and postpartum recovery; (ii) compare such services to best practices recommended by the American Correctional Association, American Jail Association, National Commission on Correctional Health Care, and American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists; and (iii) develop recommendations to ensure that proper services are provided to inmates during pregnancy, pregnancy termination, labor and delivery, and postpartum recovery.

SB 1301: Prohibits the use of isolated confinement in state correctional facilities and juvenile correctional centers, subject to certain exceptions. Isolated confinement is defined in the bill as the confinement of a prisoner or juvenile to a cell, alone or with another prisoner or juvenile, for 20 hours or more per day for an adult or for 17 hours or more per day for a juvenile, other than for the purpose of providing medical or mental health treatment.

SB 1321: Expands the stepparent adoption provisions to allow a person who is not the child’s stepparent but has a legitimate interest in the child to file a joint petition for adoption with the child’s birth parent or parent by adoption.

SB 1328: Creates the State-Funded Kinship Guardianship Assistance program (the program) to facilitate child placements with relatives, including fictive kin, and ensure permanency for children. 

SB 1363: Restores the authority of the State Board of Local and Regional Jails (the Board) to (i) ensure the development of long-range policies, programs, and plans for corrections services provided at the state and local levels; (ii) review and comment on all budgets and requests for appropriations for the Department of Corrections (the Department) prior to submission to the Governor and on all applications for federal funds; and (iii) monitor the activities of the Department and its effectiveness in implementing the standards and goals of the Board. Chapter 375 of the Acts of Assembly of 2011 repealed the Board’s authority to perform these functions

SB 1366: Requires the Department for Aging and Rehabilitative Services, in providing aging services, to use available resources to provide services to older persons with the greatest economic or social needs. 

SB 1397: Provides that the Department of Corrections shall set the release date for an inmate granted discretionary parole or conditional release no sooner than 30 business days from the date that the Department of Corrections receives notification from the Chairman of the Parole Board of the Board’s decision to grant discretionary parole or conditional release, except that the Department of Corrections may set an earlier release date in the case of a terminally ill inmate granted conditional release. 

SB 1406: Eliminates criminal penalties for simple possession of marijuana, modifies several other criminal penalties related to marijuana, and provides for an automatic expungement process for those convicted of certain marijuana-related crimes. 

SB 1428: Prohibits the Board of Directors (the Board) of the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority from selling in government stores low alcohol beverage coolers not manufactured by licensed distillers. 

SB 1462: Requires the Department of Social Services to establish a pilot program to provide a fixed reimbursement for the costs of broadband services to households currently participating in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program

SB 1471: Allows the Board of Directors of the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority to increase the frequency, duration, and designated area of events held under a local special events license upon the request of a locality after adoption of an ordinance allowing such increases. 

SB 1472: Directs the Department of Medical Assistance Services to study and develop recommendations for the permanent use of virtual supports and increasing access to virtual supports and services for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities by promoting access to assistive technology and environmental modifications

Bills Passed

  • SB 1297: Emergency order for adult protective services; acts of violence, etc., or financial exploitation
    Allows the circuit court, upon a finding that an incapacitated adult has been, within a reasonable period of time, subjected to an act of violence, force, or threat or been subjected to financial exploitation, to include in an emergency order for adult protective services one or more of the following conditions to be imposed on the alleged perpetrator: (i) a prohibition on acts of violence, force, or threat or criminal offenses that may result in injury to person or property; (ii) a prohibition on such other contacts by the alleged perpetrator with the adult or the adult’s family or household members as the court deems necessary for the health and safety of such persons; or (iii) such other conditions as the court deems necessary to prevent (a) acts of violence, force, or threat; (b) criminal offenses that may result in injury to persons or property; (c) communication or other contact of any kind by the alleged perpetrator; or (d) financial exploitation by the alleged perpetrator. The bill provides that any person who violates any such condition is guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor. Also, the bill provides that hearings on emergency orders for adult protective services shall be held no earlier than 24 hours and no later than 72 hours after the notice required has been given, unless such notice has been waived by the court. Current law just requires such hearing be held no earlier than 24 hours. Lastly, the bill provides that if the court enters an order containing any of the aforementioned conditions, the primary law-enforcement agency providing service and entry of protective orders shall enter the name of the perpetrator into the Virginia Criminal Information Network and the order shall be served forthwith on the perpetrator. This bill is identical to HB 2018.
  • SB 1299: Alcoholic beverage control; sale and delivery of mixed beverages and pre-mixed wine
    Allows distillers that have been appointed as agents of the Board of Directors (the Board) of the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority (the Authority), mixed beverage restaurant licensees, and limited mixed beverage restaurant licensees to sell mixed beverages for off-premises consumption and deliver such mixed beverages to consumers subject to requirements set forth in the bill. The bill allows the Board to summarily revoke a licensee’s privileges to sell and deliver mixed beverages for off-premises consumption for noncompliance with the requirements set forth in the bill or applicable provisions of current law. The bill also allows farm winery licensees to sell pre-mixed wine for off-premises consumption. The bill directs the Authority to convene a work group to study the sale and delivery of mixed beverages and pre-mixed wine for off-premises consumption and report its findings to the Chairmen of the House Committee on General Laws and the Senate Committee on Rehabilitation and Social Services by November 1, 2021. The provisions of the bill sunset on July 1, 2022. This bill incorporates SB 1388 and is identical to HB 1879.
  • SB 1300: Inmates; Board of Local and Regional Jails to review services provided during pregnancy, etc
    Directs the Board of Local and Regional Jails (the Board), in consultation with a stakeholder work group, to (i) identify and analyze all obstetric and gynecological services and any other services provided by local and regional jails to inmates during pregnancy, pregnancy termination, labor and delivery, and postpartum recovery; (ii) compare such services to best practices recommended by the American Correctional Association, American Jail Association, National Commission on Correctional Health Care, and American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists; and (iii) develop recommendations to ensure that proper services are provided to inmates during pregnancy, pregnancy termination, labor and delivery, and postpartum recovery. The bill directs the Board to (a) post its findings and recommendations on its website and report such findings and recommendations to the Secretary of Public Safety and Homeland Security and the Chairmen of the Senate Committee on the Judiciary, Senate Committee on Rehabilitation and Social Services, House Committee for Courts of Justice, and House Committee on Public Safety by July 1, 2022, and (b) adopt regulations consistent with its findings and recommendations.
  • SB 1321: Confirmatory adoption; expands the stepparent adoption provisions
    Expands the stepparent adoption provisions to allow a person who is not the child’s stepparent but has a legitimate interest in the child to file a joint petition for adoption with the child’s birth parent or parent by adoption.
  • SB 1328: State-Funded Kinship Guardianship Assistance program; created
    Creates the State-Funded Kinship Guardianship Assistance program (the program) to facilitate child placements with relatives, including fictive kin, and ensure permanency for children. The bill sets forth eligibility criteria for the program, payment allowances to kinship guardians, and requirements for kinship guardianship assistance agreements.
  • SB 1366: Aging services; economic and social needs
    Requires the Department for Aging and Rehabilitative Services, in providing aging services, to use available resources to provide services to older persons with the greatest economic or social needs. The bill defines “economic need” as need resulting from an income level at or below the poverty line. The bill defines “social need” as need caused by noneconomic factors, including (i) physical and mental disabilities, which include developmental disabilities and human immunodeficiency virus; (ii) language barriers; and (iii) cultural, social, or geographic isolation, including that which is related to a history of discrimination for factors such as racial or ethnic status, gender identity, gender expression, or sexual orientation that can affect an individual’s ability to perform normal daily tasks or threatens such individual’s capacity to live independently.
  • SB 1397: Parole and conditional release; notice by electronic means and certification
    Provides that the Department of Corrections shall set the release date for an inmate granted discretionary parole or conditional release no sooner than 30 business days from the date that the Department of Corrections receives notification from the Chairman of the Parole Board of the Board’s decision to grant discretionary parole or conditional release, except that the Department of Corrections may set an earlier release date in the case of a terminally ill inmate granted conditional release. The bill provides that in the case of an inmate granted parole who was convicted of a felony and sentenced to a term of 10 or more years, or an inmate granted conditional release, the Board shall notify the attorney for the Commonwealth in the jurisdiction where the inmate was sentenced (i) by electronic means at least 21 business days prior to such inmate’s release that such inmate has been granted discretionary parole or conditional release or (ii) by telephone or other electronic means prior to release that a terminally ill inmate has been granted conditional release where death is imminent.
  • SB 1428: Alcoholic beverage control; operation of government stores, sale of low alcohol beverage coolers
    Prohibits the Board of Directors (the Board) of the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority from selling in government stores low alcohol beverage coolers not manufactured by licensed distillers. Under current law, the Board may sell any low alcohol beverage coolers in government stores. The bill has a delayed effective date of January 1, 2022.
  • SB 1471: Alcoholic beverage control; local special events license, taxes and fees
    Renames the “local special events” license as the “designated outdoor refreshment area” license. The bill allows the Board of Directors of the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority to increase the frequency and duration of events held under such license after adoption of an ordinance by a locality requesting such increase in frequency and duration. Under current law, localities are limited to holding 16 events per year under such license, with each event lasting no more than three consecutive days, except during the effective dates of any rule, regulation, or order that is issued by the Governor or State Health Commissioner to meet a public health emergency and that effectively reduces allowable restaurant seating capacity. The bill also increases the state and local license fees for designated outdoor refreshment area licenses issued pursuant to a local ordinance. This bill is identical to HB 2266.
  • SB 1472: Individuals w/ intellectual & developmental disabilities; DMAS to study use of virtual support, etc
    Directs the Department of Medical Assistance Services to study and develop recommendations for the permanent use of virtual supports and increasing access to virtual supports and services for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities by promoting access to assistive technology and environmental modifications. The bill requires the Department to report its findings and recommendations to the Governor and the General Assembly by November 1, 2021.

Commissions & Boards

State Executive Council for Children’s Services

Source: Webpage

To oversee the administration of Office of Children’s Services and make such decisions as may be necessary to carry out its purposes.

Commonwealth Council on Aging

Source: Webpage

To promote an effective, coordinated approach to meeting the needs of older Virginians.

Child Support Guidelines Review Panel

Source: Webpage

Review Child Support Guidelines established pursuant to § 20-108.2 H. The Panel shall determine the adequacy of the guideline for the determination of appropriate awards for the support of children by considering current research and data on the cost of and expenditures necessary for rearing children, and any other resources it deems relevant to such review.

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Senate Rules CommitteeRules Committee (Senate)

Meets on: The call of the Chair

MembersMamie Locke (Chair) – George Barker – Creigh Deeds – John Edwards – Barbara Favola – Janet Howell – Lynwood Lewis – Louise Lucas – Dave Marsden – Ryan McDougle – Jeremy McPike – Tommy Norment  –   Chap Petersen – Dick Saslaw  – Jill Vogel

(12 Democrats and 3 Republicans)

Subcommittees: None

 

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Rules Committee bills passed by the General Assembly
Virginia Legislative Information System

Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”

  • SB 1126 Transportation District Commission of Hampton Roads; change in membership.
  • SB 1273 Behavioral Health Commission; created, report.
  • SB 1414 Henrietta Lacks Commission; extends sunset provision.
  • SB 1473 Health Insurance Reform Commission; mandated health insurance benefit or provider.
  • SJ 293 Assisted living and auxiliary grants; Joint Commission on Health Care to study available data.
  • SJ 294 JLARC; costs of education, report.

 

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Rules 2021 Committee Hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee: 1/22 1/29 2/12 2/19 

Top News

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Rules Committee bills passed by the General Assembly
Virginia Legislative Information System

Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”

  • SB 1126 Transportation District Commission of Hampton Roads; change in membership.
  • SB 1273 Behavioral Health Commission; created, report.
  • SB 1414 Henrietta Lacks Commission; extends sunset provision.
  • SB 1473 Health Insurance Reform Commission; mandated health insurance benefit or provider.
  • SJ 293 Assisted living and auxiliary grants; Joint Commission on Health Care to study available data.
  • SJ 294 JLARC; costs of education, report.

 

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Rules 2021 Committee Hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee: 1/22 1/29 2/12 2/19 

Summary

Meets on: The call of the Chair

MembersMamie Locke (Chair) – George Barker – Creigh Deeds – John Edwards – Barbara Favola – Janet Howell – Lynwood Lewis – Louise Lucas – Dave Marsden – Ryan McDougle – Jeremy McPike – Tommy Norment  –   Chap Petersen – Dick Saslaw  – Jill Vogel

(12 Democrats and 3 Republicans)

Subcommittees: None

 

About

From Senate Rules: “A Committee on Rules, which shall be in addition to the foregoing standing Committees, consisting of the standing Committee Chairs; the President pro tempore, if the person is not a Chair; the Majority Leader, if the person is not a Chair; the Minority Leader; and other Senators to comprise not more than 17. The Chair of the Committee on Rules shall not be Chair of any standing Committee.”.

The Committee shall consider all resolutions amending or altering the Rules of the Senate; all joint rules with the House of Delegates; all bills and resolutions creating study committees or commissions; and all other resolutions (except those of a purely procedural nature, those concerning nominations and appointments to any office or position in the Commonwealth including the nominations of Justices and Judges, and those concerning constitutional amendments). The Committee may report such bills or resolutions with the recommendation that they be passed, or that they be rereferred to another Committee. In considering a bill or resolution, the Committee is empowered to sit while the Senate is in session. There shall be a subcommittee of the Committee, consisting of the Chair and members appointed by the Chair to equal the number of House members appointed to the subcommittee, which shall exercise on behalf of the Committee such powers as are delegated to the Committee when acting jointly with the Committee on Rules of the House of Delegates or a subcommittee thereof.

Web

VA Legislative Information Systems (LIS)

Bills in committee   

Bills reported out 

SB 1126 Transportation District Commission of Hampton Roads; change in membership. Adds a member of the House of Delegates and Senate to the Transportation District Commission of Hampton Roads

SB 1172 Capitol Square Preservation Council; powers and duties, review and approval of plans for changes. Gives authority to the Preservation council to approve any changes to any artifacts within the Capitol Square.

SB 1273 Behavioral Health Commission; created, report. Creates the Behavioral Health Commission to study and improve health services provided by the state.

SB 1408 Health Care, Joint Commission on; repeals sunset provision. Repeals the sunset provision for the Joint Commission on Health Care.

SB 1414 Henrietta Lacks Commission; extends sunset provision.Extends the expiration of the Henrietta Lacks Commission from July 1, 2021, to July 1, 2026.

SB 1473 Health Insurance Reform Commission; mandated health insurance benefit or provider. Refers certain legislation regarding a mandated health insurance benefit or provider to the Health Insurance Reform Commission for review.

SJ 276 Brain Aneurysm Awareness Month; designating as September 2021 and each succeeding year thereafter.

SJ 285 Barrier Crimes and Criminal History Records Checks, Joint Subcommittee Studying; continued.Continues the Joint Subcommittee to Study Barrier Crimes and Criminal History Records Checks for one additional year, through November 30, 2021.

SJ 286 Emergency Management Professionals Week; designating third week in March, in 2021 & each succeeding.

SJ 288 National Statuary Hall Collection at the United States Capitol; Barbara Rose Johns. Replaces Robert E. Lee’s statue in the Capitol Building with Barbara Johns.

SJ 292 Women’s Suffrage Month; designating as August 2020 and each succeeding year thereafter.

SJ 293 Assisted living and auxiliary grants; Joint Commission on Health Care to study available data.Requests the Joint Commission on Health Care to study available data regarding assisted living and auxiliary grants

SJ 294 JLARC; costs of education, report. Directs the Joint Legislative Audit and Review Commission to study the true cost of education in the Commonwealth and what it would cost to get it to the standards of quality.

SJ 308 COVID-19; JLARC to study the impact on Virginia’s public schools, students, and school employees. Directs the Joint Legislative Audit and Review Commission to study the impact of COVID-19 on Virginia’s public schools, students, and school employees.

SJ 323 Liberty Amendments Month; designating June 19 through third Monday in July, in 2021.

SR 95 Washington, Booker T.; establishes commemorative commission to honor w/statue in Old Senate Chamber.

Bills Passed

SB 1126 Transportation District Commission of Hampton Roads; change in membership. Transportation District Commission of Hampton Roads; membership. Adds a member of the House of Delegates, to be appointed by the Speaker of the House, and a member of the Senate, to be appointed by the Senate Committee on Rules, to the Transportation District Commission of Hampton Roads. Such legislative members must represent districts that include certain cities in the Hampton Roads region. The bill also requires that nonlegislative citizen members of the Commission appointed by the Governor have experience in one of the following fields: transit, transportation, or land use planning; management of transit, transportation, or other public sector operations; public budgeting or finance; corporate communications; government oversight; or state or local government. The new qualifications do not affect the appointment of any current members of the Commission until the expiration of their terms.

SB 1273 Behavioral Health Commission; created, report. Behavioral Health Commission created. Creates the Behavioral Health Commission in the legislative branch of state government for the purpose of (i) studying and making recommendations for the improvement of behavioral health services and the behavioral health service system in the Commonwealth to encourage the adoption of policies to increase the quality and availability of and ensure access to the full continuum of high-quality, effective, and efficient behavioral health services for all persons in the Commonwealth and (ii) providing ongoing oversight of behavioral health services and the behavioral health service system in the Commonwealth, including monitoring and evaluation of established programs, services, and delivery and payment structures and implementation of new services and initiatives in the Commonwealth and development of recommendations for improving such programs, services, structures, and implementation.

SB 1414 Henrietta Lacks Commission; extends sunset provision. Henrietta Lacks Commission; sunset. Extends the expiration of the Henrietta Lacks Commission from July 1, 2021, to July 1, 2026.

SB 1473 Health Insurance Reform Commission; mandated health insurance benefit or provider. Health Insurance Reform Commission; mandated health insurance benefit or provider. Provides that, for the purposes of the requirement that the Chair of the House Committee on Labor and Commerce or Senate Committee on Commerce and Labor refer certain legislation regarding a mandated health insurance benefit or provider to the Health Insurance Reform Commission for review, “mandated health insurance benefit or provider” means coverage required under the laws of the Commonwealth to be provided in a policy of accident and sickness insurance or a contract for a health-related condition that (i) includes coverage for specific health care services or benefits; (ii) places limitations or restrictions on deductibles, coinsurance, copayments, or any annual or lifetime maximum benefit amounts; or (iii) includes a specific category of licensed health care practitioners from whom an insured is entitled to receive care.

SJ 293 Assisted living and auxiliary grants; Joint Commission on Health Care to study available data. Study; Joint Commission on Health Care; assisted living and auxiliary grants; report. Requests the Joint Commission on Health Care to study available data regarding assisted living and auxiliary grants and develop a blueprint for implementing recommendations that will allow the Commonwealth to provide a more realistic system of addressing housing and care needs.

SJ 294 JLARC; costs of education, report. Study; JLARC; costs of education; report. Directs the Joint Legislative Audit and Review Commission to study the true cost of education in the Commonwealth and provide an accurate assessment of the costs to implement the Standards of Quality.

Commissions

Joint Commission on Administrative Rules

Source: Webpage

To review existing agency rules or regulations and agency rules or regulations during the promulgation or final adoption process.

Code Commission

Source: Webpage

The Commission is charged with the responsibility of publishing and maintaining a Code of the general and permanent statutes of the Commonwealth. The Commission also has the responsibility of publishing and maintaining the Virginia Administrative Code.

Senate Ethics Advisory Panel

Source: Webpage

To inquire into any alleged violation of Articles 2 through 5 (§ 30-102 et seq.) of this chapter by any member of the respective house of the General Assembly in his current term or his immediate prior term. In addition to the other powers and duties specified in the Code of Virginia the Panel has the power to organize and preserve statements and reports filed with the Panel for a period of five years from the date of receipt.

Virginia Commission on Intergovernmental Cooperation

Source: Webpage

To encourage and arrange conferences with officials of other states and other units of government; carry forward the participation of Virginia as a member of the Council of State Governments, both regionally and nationally; formulate proposals for cooperation between Virginia and other states; establish such committees as it deems advisable to conduct conferences and formulate proposals concerning subjects of interstate cooperation; monitor and evaluate the Commonwealth’s participation in interstate compacts; review, evaluate, and recommend suggested uniform state legislation; require, at its discretion, from any appointee representing Virginia on any interstate compact, commission, committee, or board, a report on that organization’s work and accomplishments; and review, evaluate, and make recommendations concerning federal policies that are of concern to the Commonwealth.

Legislative Support CommissionLegislative Support

Source: Webpage

To supervise the printing and distribution of bills, resolutions, joint resolutions, House documents, Senate documents or other matters directed to be printed for use of the Senate or the House of Delegates and intended for temporary use, as well as the printing and distribution of House Journals, Senate Journals and the Acts of Assembly; to supervise the maintenance and operation of the General Assembly Building; to supervise and assist the Capitol Tour Guides; and to supervise the Capitol Police Force.

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Senate Transportation CommitteeTransportation Committee (Senate)

Meets on: Thursday at 15 minutes after adjournment in Senate Room 3, The Capitol

MembersDave Marsden (Chair) –  Jennifer Boysko – John Cosgrove – Bill DeSteph – Adam Ebbin – Barbara Favola – Jennifer McClellan – Jeremy McPike – Steve Newman – Mark Obenshain – Mark Peake – Todd Pillion – Lionell Spruill – Dave Suetterlein – Scott Surovell

(8 Democrats and 7 Republicans)

Subcommittees: None

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Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”

  • SB 1126 Transportation District Commission of Hampton Roads; change in membership.
  • SB 1136 License plates, special; repeals issuance of certain plates.
  • SB 1144 Aircraft civil; registration and licensing.
  • SB 1160 Removal of vehicles involved in accidents; lien of keeper of vehicles.
  • SB 1212 New River Valley Passenger Rail Station Authority; creation of authority in Planning District 4.
  • SB 1214 Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority; repeals effective date for creation of Authority.
  • SB 1229 License plates, special; issuance for supporters of Ducks Unlimited, fees.
  • SB 1253 Access roads to economic development sites; criteria for use of funds.
  • SB 1259 Virginia Highway Corporation Act; alteration of certificate of authority, powers and duties of SCC.
  • SB 1260 Transportation purposes; entry onto land for inspection.
  • SB 1277 Motor Vehicles, Department of, and Supreme Court of Virginia; repeals reporting requirement.
  • SB 1329 Summons; promises to appear after issuance.
  • SB 1335 Learner’s permits; use of personal communication devices, restrictions.
  • SB 1350 Transportation funding; statewide prioritization process, resiliency.
  • SB 1470 Vehicle registration; special communication needs indicator.
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Transportation 2021 Committee Hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee: 1/20 1/21 1/28 1/29 2/3 2/11 2/18

Should Virginia bus systems go fare free forever?
Virginia Mercury, Wyatt Gordon April 6, 2021 (Medium)

When the General Assembly created the Transit Rider Incentive Program (TRIP) as part of Gov. Ralph Northam’s 2020 transportation omnibus, the lion’s share of the funding was allocated to support new regional bus routes. With COVID’s cancellation of much commuter service across the commonwealth, those dollars are now being dedicated to TRIP’s secondary goal: fare free transit pilot projects.

With large localities like Lynchburg, Roanoke, Alexandria, Richmond, Charlottesville, and Fairfax County now expressing interest in eliminating bus fares for at least three years, could the shift to zero fares in Virginia become permanent?

Nearly every transit system in the commonwealth dropped fares last year as a public health measure in response to COVID, but until recently none had announced intentions to make that move to protect riders and operators more permanent. Based on the responses to a request for ideas DRPT issued to transit providers last fall, the list of bus systems seeking to stay fare free beyond the pandemic could soon grow substantially longer.

Greenway Tolls Bill Advances; Reid Bill Dropped
Renss Greene February 19, 2021 (Short)

Subramanyam’s bill and its Senate twin, Sen. John J. Bell (D-13)’s Senate Bill 1259, have many elements of bills introduced and killed every year since Subramanyam’s predecessor David I. Ramadan held office. This year, it enjoys the broadest support among Loudoun’s state delegation of any bill of its type in that time, and is now headed to the Senate floor, possibly for a final vote. The Senate bill has already passed both chambers. One of its co-patrons, Sen. Jennifer B. Boysko (D-33), serves on the Senate transportation committee.

However, the bill still faces some opposition from the Greenway’s powerful lobbying firm, Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP, and lawmakers sympathetic to the Australia-based multinational firm that owns the Greenway, Atlas Arteria.

The bill seeks to create measurable standards for evaluating whether proposed toll increases would discourage use of the highway—something many Loudouners say is already happening, as they avoid Greenway tolls when they can. Under the law governing the Greenway, toll increases should not discourage use.

Top News

i

Note: Details on bills passed below are in the Heading “Bills passed”

  • SB 1126 Transportation District Commission of Hampton Roads; change in membership.
  • SB 1136 License plates, special; repeals issuance of certain plates.
  • SB 1144 Aircraft civil; registration and licensing.
  • SB 1160 Removal of vehicles involved in accidents; lien of keeper of vehicles.
  • SB 1212 New River Valley Passenger Rail Station Authority; creation of authority in Planning District 4.
  • SB 1214 Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority; repeals effective date for creation of Authority.
  • SB 1229 License plates, special; issuance for supporters of Ducks Unlimited, fees.
  • SB 1253 Access roads to economic development sites; criteria for use of funds.
  • SB 1259 Virginia Highway Corporation Act; alteration of certificate of authority, powers and duties of SCC.
  • SB 1260 Transportation purposes; entry onto land for inspection.
  • SB 1277 Motor Vehicles, Department of, and Supreme Court of Virginia; repeals reporting requirement.
  • SB 1329 Summons; promises to appear after issuance.
  • SB 1335 Learner’s permits; use of personal communication devices, restrictions.
  • SB 1350 Transportation funding; statewide prioritization process, resiliency.
  • SB 1470 Vehicle registration; special communication needs indicator.
i
Transportation 2021 Committee Hearings
Virginia Senate Live Session Video Stream

Standing Committee: 1/20 1/21 1/28 1/29 2/3 2/11 2/18

Should Virginia bus systems go fare free forever?
Virginia Mercury, Wyatt Gordon April 6, 2021 (Medium)

When the General Assembly created the Transit Rider Incentive Program (TRIP) as part of Gov. Ralph Northam’s 2020 transportation omnibus, the lion’s share of the funding was allocated to support new regional bus routes. With COVID’s cancellation of much commuter service across the commonwealth, those dollars are now being dedicated to TRIP’s secondary goal: fare free transit pilot projects.

With large localities like Lynchburg, Roanoke, Alexandria, Richmond, Charlottesville, and Fairfax County now expressing interest in eliminating bus fares for at least three years, could the shift to zero fares in Virginia become permanent?

Nearly every transit system in the commonwealth dropped fares last year as a public health measure in response to COVID, but until recently none had announced intentions to make that move to protect riders and operators more permanent. Based on the responses to a request for ideas DRPT issued to transit providers last fall, the list of bus systems seeking to stay fare free beyond the pandemic could soon grow substantially longer.

Greenway Tolls Bill Advances; Reid Bill Dropped
Renss Greene February 19, 2021 (Short)

Subramanyam’s bill and its Senate twin, Sen. John J. Bell (D-13)’s Senate Bill 1259, have many elements of bills introduced and killed every year since Subramanyam’s predecessor David I. Ramadan held office. This year, it enjoys the broadest support among Loudoun’s state delegation of any bill of its type in that time, and is now headed to the Senate floor, possibly for a final vote. The Senate bill has already passed both chambers. One of its co-patrons, Sen. Jennifer B. Boysko (D-33), serves on the Senate transportation committee.

However, the bill still faces some opposition from the Greenway’s powerful lobbying firm, Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP, and lawmakers sympathetic to the Australia-based multinational firm that owns the Greenway, Atlas Arteria.

The bill seeks to create measurable standards for evaluating whether proposed toll increases would discourage use of the highway—something many Loudouners say is already happening, as they avoid Greenway tolls when they can. Under the law governing the Greenway, toll increases should not discourage use.

Summary

Meets on: Thursday at 15 minutes after adjournment in Senate Room 3, The Capitol

MembersDave Marsden (Chair) –  Jennifer Boysko – John Cosgrove – Bill DeSteph – Adam Ebbin – Barbara Favola – Jennifer McClellan – Jeremy McPike – Steve Newman – Mark Obenshain – Mark Peake – Todd Pillion – Lionell Spruill – Dave Suetterlein – Scott Surovell

(8 Democrats and 7 Republicans)

Subcommittees: None

About

From Senate Rules: “A Committee on Transportation, 15 Senators, to consider matters concerning airports; airspaces; airways; the laws concerning motor vehicles relating to rules of the road or traffic regulations; heliports; highways; port facilities; public roads and streets; transportation safety; public waterways; railways; seaports; transportation companies or corporations; and transportation public utilities. Any matter relating to rules of the road or traffic regulations which include a change in a penalty shall be rereferred by the Committee to the Committee for Courts of Justice.”.

Web

VA Legislative Information Systems (LIS)

Bills in committee   

(none at this time)

Bills reported out 

SB 1098 Unmanned aircraft; exempts an owner from the requirement to register.

SB 1136 License plates, special; repeals issuance of certain plates. Repeals the authorizations for issuance of special license plates no longer issued due to low plate sales, expired authorizations, or inability to issue.

SB 1144 Aircraft civil; registration and licensing. If a civil aircraft has to be registered with the Department of Aviation, credit can be given for the tax paid.

SB 1160 Removal of vehicles involved in accidents; lien of keeper of vehicles. Modernizes the removal and appraisal process of vehicle involved in accidents.

SB 1212 New River Valley Passenger Rail Station Authority; creation of authority in Planning District 4. Creates a new railway passenger line to b