RICHMOND, VA, 13 FEBRUARY 2018: The Virginia Senate Republican Caucus today expressed satisfaction on the progress of the 2018 Session of the Virginia General Assembly at Crossover, the halfway point of the legislative session.
Of the nearly 1,000 bills filed by members of the Virginia Senate, 468 were approved by the upper chamber by the Crossover deadline and will now be considered by the House of Delegates. Senate Bills 29 and 30, Amendments to the 2016-2018 Biennial Budget and the 2018-2020 Biennial Budget, respectively, will be taken up by the Senate next week.
“Senate Republicans have advanced bills focused on the most important issues to the people of Virginia,” noted Senate Majority Leader Thomas K. Norment, Jr. (R-James City). “From measures that will make healthcare more accessible and affordable, to meaningful legislation to grow our economy, Republican Senators have been unified in their commitment to improving the lives of all Virginians.”
Below is a select list of bills, sponsored by members of the Senate Republican Caucus and grouped by topic, that were approved by the Senate of Virginia by Crossover.
Strengthening the Economy and Creating Jobs
SB 405 (McDougle) Passed Senate 22-13-4
Encourages development of next generation wireless technologies.
SB 971 (Obenshain) Passed Senate 40-0
Directs the Commonwealth Transportation Board to develop and adopt Interstate 81 Corridor Improvement plan.
SB 803 (Reeves) Passed Senate 23-16
Allows Virginia distillers to invest profits from ABC store sales on their product.
SB 960 (Sturtevant) Passed Senate 40-0
Establishes system to allow local school boards to develop technical education pipelines for apprenticeships and future employment.
SB 268 (Dunnavant) Passed Senate 36-0-2
Creates a separate classification for personal property of computer equipment and peripherals used in a data center to encourage technological firm economic development.
SB 318 (Ruff) Passed Senate 22-17
Directs the Secretary of Commerce and Trade to evaluate the small business certification program in regular intervals to ensure appropriate transparency, growth and standards.
Expanding Opportunity through Education
SB 579 (DeSteph) Passed Senate 20-18
Redirects unused credits under the Educational Improvement Scholarships tax credit program under the Neighborhood Assistance Act tax credit program.
SB 232 (Hanger) Passed Senate 39-0
Authorizes issuance of bonds for Virginia higher education institutions for capital projects.
SB 368 (Newman) Passed Senate 40-0
Requires Virginia educational programs of higher education to include training and intervention for students with dyslexia or a related disorder.
SB 969 (Newman) Passed Senate 38-1
Requires the Board of Education in establishing high school graduation requirements to require verified credit in history and social science.
SB 349 (Peake) Passed Senate 40-0
Requires the Board of Education to provide the issuance of a provisional license to those with appropriate level of experience in critical teacher shortage areas.
SB 462 (Reeves) Passed Senate 39-0
Provides certain members of the Virginia National Guard enrolled at private institutions of higher education are eligible to receive education grants.
SB 103 (Suetterlein) Passed Senate 39-1
Requires the Board of Education to provide teacher licensure reciprocity for any spouse of an active duty member of the Armed Forces of the United States or the Commonwealth.
SB 170 (Stanley) Passed Senate 34-6
Prohibits students in preschool through grade three for being expelled unless for certain severe offenses.
SB 747 (Sturtevant) Passed Senate 38-2
Ensures high school students engaged in dual enrollment programs are included in guaranteed admissions agreements with four-year universities.
Ensuring Transparency and Ethics
SB 20 (Chase) Passed Senate 23-17
Requires the Department of Planning and Budget to direct the DPOR and CJSB to identify opportunities for regulatory reform, up to 25% over the next three years.
SJ 75 (Norment) Passed Senate 40-0
Establishes a two-year joint subcommittee to study current ethics laws in Virginia.
SB 751 (Sturtevant) Passed Senate 26-13-1
Requires large school divisions to post public expenditures and vendor information.
Increasing Access to Quality Health Care
SB 915 (Dunnavant) Passed Senate 40-0
Prioritizes funding of waivers for most critical Virginians, including additional funding for mental health, substance abuse, and alternative transportation of Medicaid patients.
SB 844 (Dunnavant) Passed Senate 40-0
Requires health care providers providing Medicaid and government services in Virginia to provide insurance options to all areas.
SB 935 (Wagner) Passed Senate 38-0
Allows small businesses to pool health care plans for larger negotiating and purchasing ability.
SB 544 (Obenshain) Passed Senate 40-0
Requires existing prescription drug donation programs to accept unused drugs from nursing homes, licensed hospitals, among others, to be re-dispensed to the indigent.
SB 593 (Vogel) Passed Senate 40-0
Requires health insurers to provide health coverage for diagnosis and treatment of autism spectrum disorders in individuals from age two through age eighteen.
SB 866 (Stanley) Passed Senate 39-0
Provides licensure for Patrick County Hospital to encourage hospital reopening.
SB 964 (Sturtevant) Passed Senate 40-0
Expands catastrophic coverage beyond the current federal cap of age 30, allowing individuals to purchase low-cost, high deductible healthcare.
Maximizing Virginia Energy
SB 378 (Chafin) Passed Senate 29-11
Reinstate Virginia coal employment and production incentive tax credits.
SB 179 (Stanley) Passed Senate 40-0
Facilitates solar facilities being incorporated in localities comprehensive plans.
SB 780 (Chafin) Passed Senate 40-0
Provides that Southwest counties (Buchanan, Dickenson, Lee, Russell, Scott, Tazewell, and Wise) enter into revenue sharing agreements for new hydroelectric plant project.
Protecting Virginians & Reforming Criminal Justice
SB 47 (Black) Passed Senate 40-0
Increases the penalty for female genital mutilation to a class 2 felony.
SB 49 (Cosgrove) Passed Senate 32-7
Requires a registered sex offender entering an emergency shelter to give notice to law enforcement so as to make appropriate arrangements to keep the public safe.
SB 106 (Suetterlein) Passed Senate 23-17
Raises the larceny threshold from $200 to $500.
SB 954 (Norment) Passed Senate 38-2
Removes jail option for a marijuana conviction, and reduces overall penalty to no more than a $500 fine, with first-time conviction having the ability to be expunged.
SB 508 (Carrico) Passed Senate 40-0
Allows VDOT and State Police to utilize drones to survey and catalogue accident scenes for evidentiary purposes.