I hope you had a safe, relaxing, and restorative holiday season. To call last year challenging would be an understatement. For many it was a year of loss, loneliness, and instability. Amid this turmoil, it has been inspiring to watch our communities respond to such adversity with care and concern for others, innovation, solidarity, and resilience. I have been honored to serve as a steward of the Commonwealth’s fiscal policy through the overlapping crises of 2020 and I am grateful for the encouraging economic standing of Virginia as we enter 2021. We have much to look forward to: A new federal administration, a well-funded state vaccination program centered around equity and efficiency, and the enactment of a host of new laws that will enhance the social and economic well-being of all Virginians.
This month will mark the beginning of a new General Assembly session for which we are well-positioned to make even more historic, essential progress. I thank you ahead of time for your engagement and support.
Upcoming Budget Events
There are several public events related to the Commonwealth’s budget development scheduled for early January.On Wednesday, January 6th at 10am there will be four virtual public hearings to receive comments on the Governor’s proposed amendments to the 2020-2022 biennial budget. Each of the four hearings will focus on a different region of Virginia: Northern Virginia, Western Virginia, Hampton Roads, and Central Virginia (Richmond). The public will be able to sign up to speak at any one of these hearings between 7am and 4pm on January 5th. Information on registering to virtually attend and speak at a hearing will be posted on the House Appropriations Committee website: http://hac.virginia.gov. Alternatively, you may submit a comment on the budget online or in writing to:
Delegate Luke E. Torian
P.O. Box 406
Richmond, Virginia 23218
On January 8th at 1pm, House Appropriations Committee staff will provide a briefing to the House of Delegates on the Governor’s proposed budget amendments. That briefing will also be virtual and open to the public.
You can find more information and stream all of these events at this link.
Prince William County Legislative Town Hall
The Prince William County delegation will hold a virtual legislative town hall on January 9th from 1-4pm. This will be an opportunity to hear from your elected representatives regarding the legislation we will carry during the 2021 session and for you to share your priorities with us.
2021 General Assembly Session
The 2021 General Assembly session will begin on January 13th. Odd-year sessions (wherein our responsibility is only to amend the Commonwealth’s operating budget, not craft a wholly new biennial budget), are always shorter than even-year sessions like 2020. This year, we will work diligently to complete our legislative duties within a further shortened timeframe.
Like the 2020 Special Session, the House of Delegates will conduct this session virtually to comply with social distancing guidelines. Most legislators and staff will be working remotely. All committee and subcommittee meetings, as well as floor session and briefings like those mentioned above, will be livestreamed for the public. You will be able to sign up to speak at these virtual meetings if you wish to show support for or opposition to any bills.
Please don’t hesitate to reach out to my office with any questions or concerns. Happy New Year!