As we enter the final two weeks of the 2024 Legislative Session, the work continues to flow throughout the General Assembly. I am motivated to address the priorities of my constituents of the 24th District and deliver a budget for all Virginians. I hope you continue to contact my staff and me to share your opinions, thoughts, and concerns. 

On Friday morning, it was my privilege to chair the Rules Subcommittee on Studies. We heard and acted upon over 39 Senate bills that covered an array of topics from efforts to support Virginia blue catfish, the importance of forest canopies, and a VDOT study on road improvements in Gainesville.

Delegate Torian chairing Rules Subcommittee on Studies

My Legislation

Throughout this week, both chambers have continued to consider bills that passed through their respective chamber.  On Thursday, my bill (HB713) that would require higher education institutions to create campus safety and emergency preparedness training advanced unanimously through the Senate Committee on Education and Health. I look forward to HB713’s progression through the Senate next week.

HB713 passed out unanimously of the Senate Committee on Education and Health

Budget Update

Last Sunday, the House Appropriations Committee reported out the budget for the FY2024 – 2026 biennium.  We created a fiscally responsible budget focused on the needs of the citizens of Virginia that contains investments in Virginia’s public education system, affordable health care, and public employees, to name a few.

Delegate Luke Torian’s speech to the Appropriations Committee

Some of the highlights from the House Appropriations Committee approved budget include:

  • A 3% raise in each year of the biennium for state and state-supported local employees and an additional 3 3/8 increase both years for our teachers to ensure they are paid at the national average.
  • Around $1 billion will be used to fully fund re-benchmarking, and more than $500 million will be used to provide much-needed support to our most vulnerable students. Over $200 million to limit in-state undergraduate tuition increases and strengthen the degree pipeline to high-demand job fields.
  • This budget retains the additional 3,440 DD waiver slots included in the Governor’s introduced budget and increases rates for pay for providers.
  • More than $457 million for mental health and substance abuse services.
  • $200 million over the biennium to the Community Flood Prevention Fund to support community-scale flood mitigation projects and more than $200 million in the Water Quality Improvement Fund. These allocations are conditional on the expected revenue the Commonwealth will receive from the re-entry to the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI).
  • In public safety, we have directed $110 million for community violence intervention programming and $34 million to increase funds for court-appointed attorneysin addition to opening a new public defender office.

To view my complete statement on the House Budget, please click HERE.

On Thursday, the Virginia House of Delegates debated their budget priorities. After a lengthy discussion, the House passed the budget for the FY2024-2026 biennium (75Y-24N).

Delegate Luke Torian presenting the House Budget on Thursday

Next week, conferees will be named, and the House and Senate budgets will be put into conference. During the conference process, conferees will work to resolve their budget differences.

Constituent Corner

In week seven of session, my team and I have continued to meet with constituents and advocates, including members of Rise for Youth, Virginia Our Way, and Virginians Organized for Interfaith Community Engagement. I look forward to continuing these meetings on critical issues in the remaining weeks of session.

Delegate Luke Torian meeting with RISE for Youth
Delegate Luke Torian meeting with RISE for Youth
Delegate Luke Torian meeting with Virginia Tech President Tim Sands
Delegate Luke Torian meeting with Virginia Tech President Tim Sands
Delegate Luke Torian meeting with advocates from Fund our Schools
Delegate Luke Torian meeting with advocates from Fund our Schools

If you have any questions or comments about the General Assembly Session, please contact my office at info@delegatetorian.com or 703-785-2224.