This past week was crossover at the 2023 General Assembly, meaning both the House and Senate completed work on bills introduced by their respective members and sent their legislation over to the other chamber for consideration. We spent nearly eight hours on the floor last Monday, having discussions and reviewing all legislation before the deadline to send it to the Senate.
This week I signed on as a Chief Co-Patron to House Bill 2414.
House Bill 2414 (Delegate Don Scott) will allow a disabled veteran or surviving spouse to apply for a real property tax exemption and receive a decision before purchasing a qualifying property. This bill passed out of the House Committee on Finance and passed the House of Delegates unanimously on February 7th. The bill is now referred to the Senate Committee on Finance and Appropriations.
On Thursday, the House of Delegates and Virginia Senate each approved its version of the Commonwealth’s amended biennial operating budget.
Each chamber will review the distinct budget proposal approved by the other body this coming week. Generally, both the House and Senate vote to reject the other chamber’s budget and then enter a committee of conference. This technical procedure is when Democratic and Republican representatives from the House Appropriations Committee and the Senate Finance and Appropriations Committee will work to iron out the differences in our budgets. On Friday, the Speaker appointed me as a budget conferee, and we will begin meetings next week.
You can view every version of the state budget, as well as every budget amendment that has been submitted, at budget.lis.virginia.gov.
After a lengthy review by the House Appropriations Committee, they released their amendments to Governor Youngkin’s budget last Sunday. Of the hundreds of amendments submitted by members. Three amendments that I submitted were included in the House budget:
Item 112 #1h – Directs the Secretary of Commerce and Trade and the Virginia Department of Transportation to review the economic development, transportation, and public safety benefits of expanding Van Buren Road in Prince William County
Item 136 #4h – Provides $630,000 the second year (FY2024) from the general fund to sustain and expand the REACH Virginia model to all eight regions in the state, supporting the implementation of new teacher mentorship programs
Item 215 #2h – Requests funding for Northern Virginia Community College to provide technical instruction for automotive apprenticeships with the Prince William County Department of Facilities and Fleet Management
This week my team and I met with the Virginia Moose Lodge, the Virginia Association of Recovery Housing, the Norfolk State University Student Government Association, the Virginia Government Employee Association, the Virginia Maritime Association, and the James Madison University Student Government, to name a few of the fabulous groups to stop by this week.
If you have any questions or comments about the General Assembly Session, please get in touch with my office at firstname.lastname@example.org or 703-785-2224.