Richmond, Va, 10 March 2012: The Virginia Senate Republican Caucus today reported on the disposition of key measures during the 2012 Regular Session of the Virginia General Assembly.
Of the 403 bills filed by members of the Virginia Senate and approved by the chamber by Crossover, over 300 have been passed and forwarded to Governor McDonnell for consideration. In addition, the Senate approved over 500 of the 608 House Bills filed by Delegates that were approved by that chamber.
“The Senate of Virginia successfully approved legislation that will spur economic growth, streamline state government, and improve the quality of our schools,” noted Senate Majority Leader Thomas K. Norment, Jr. (R-James City). “We have also returned the Senate to a higher standard, allowing all bills to be heard and considered. This session, no bills were bottled up in Senate subcommittees intended to kill them without a vote, and more bills on a wide variety of issues were brought to the Senate floor for consideration. Senators from both parties can take pride in the fact that the legislation they file will receive a fair hearing.”
The Senate approved many of the key components of Governor Robert F. McDonnell’s agenda, including his legislation to reduce and streamline the state’s Boards and Commissions. It also approved multiple measures focused on spurring economic development and creating jobs.
“While the continued budget impasse creates a challenge that must be resolved, the work product of this session has been impressive,” said Senator Ryan T. McDougle (R-Hanover), Chairman of the Senate Republican Caucus. “Bills on jobs and economic development, education, public safety, government reform, health care, and veterans’ affairs that won approval in the Senate also won acceptance in the House.”
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. The list below includes those bills, and gives a report on the ultimate result of the measures by the House of Delegates.
SB 112 (McDougle) Passed Senate 40-0 Passed House 95-0-1
Exempts certain computer hardware and software from sales and use taxes in order to incentivize the creation of data centers.
SB 122 (Watkins) Passed Senate 40-0 Passed House 100-0
Makes it easier for localities to receive derelict buildings for the purposes of redevelopment.
SB 128 (Stanley) Passed Senate 39-0 Passed House 99-0
Develops the Governor’s Agriculture and Forestry Industries Development Fund to provide economic development grants aimed at agricultural and forestry operations.
SB 130 (Stanley) Passed Senate 40-0 Tabled in House
Establishing the Building Revitalization Grant Fund to give grants to corporations retrofitting buildings to serve as new places of business.
SB 344 (McDougle) Passed Senate 40-0 Passed House 96-0
Creates investment tax credits for small businesses.
SB 368 (Reeves) Passed Senate 40-0 Passed House 81-16
Extends the Major Business Facility jobs tax credit.
SB 413 (Norment) Passed Senate 26-14 Passed House 79-19-2
Creates incentives for businesses producing renewable energy.
SB 444 (Vogel) Passed Senate 40-0 Passed House 98-0-1
Exempts any gain made under federal rehabilitation tax credits from Virginia income taxes as well.
SB 549 (Wagner) Passed Senate 28-12 Left in House
Classifies machinery and tools purchased after July 1, 2012 as intangible personal property and therefore subject only to state taxation.
SB 607 (Carrico) Passed Senate 38-2 Passed House 94-3
Assists economic development in Bristol.
SB 85 (Hanger and Favola) Passed Senate 40-0 Tabled by House
Expands the two-year college grant program from students whose expected family contribution is no more than $8,000 to those whose expected family contribution is no more than $12,000.
SB 131 (Stanley) Passed Senate 20-20 Passed House 57-40
Provides a tax credit for corporations that offer scholarships to low-income families for K through 12 students attending private schools.
SB 278 (Smith) Passed Senate 28-11 Passed House 65-33
Shifts the date for contract renewal from April 15th to June 15th.
SB 440 (Obenshain) Passed Senate 20-18 Passed House 59-38
Eases restrictions on charter schools in Virginia.
SB 489 (Ruff) Passed Senate 24-14 Passed House 73-27
Streamlines diploma requirements in secondary education by creating 3 categories instead of 7.
SB 514 (Wagner) Passed Senate 40-0 Passed House 98-0
Mandates the state board of education credits students with gaining industry certifications on their diplomas.
SB 564 (Black) Passed Senate 23-17 Passed House 73-26
Limits required description of the curriculum a home school student will follow to a list of subjects to be studied.
SB 598 (Newman) Passed Senate 30-10 Passed House 50-49
Failed to Reach Agreement
Creates a process for distribution of education funds for school systems using virtual school programs.
SB 117 (McDougle) Passed Senate 39-0 Never Taken Up by
Changes budget cycle so the biennial budget shall begin on July 1 of odd-numbered years.
SB 267 (Norment) Passed Senate 40-0 Tabled by House
Requires reports to be issued with the budget conference report that specifically identify any non-state agency appropriation, and item in the conference report that was not included in the House or Senate budget, and any item that represents failed legislation.
SB 274 (Smith) Passed Senate 25-15 Passed House 74-26
Removes mandate that Virginia localities create urban development areas.
SB 348 (McWaters) Passed Senate 20-20 No Action by House
Creates the Government Agency Effectiveness Review Commission to review state agencies on a five-year cycle on their effectiveness.
SB 446 (Vogel) Passed Senate 40-0 Passed by Indefinitely by
House Privileges and
Creates a bi-partisan redistricting commission to take redistricting out of the hands of politicians.
SB 678 (McDougle) Passed Senate 25-14 Passed House 76-22
The Governor’s reform package that combines, consolidates, and streamlines over 50 government agencies.
SB 679 (Newman) Passed Senate 40-0 Passed House 94-4
Eliminates multiple state mandates on localities.
Health Care Reform
SB 341 (Newman) Passed Senate 40-0 Carried Over to 2013 by
Increases the amount an individual can claim from 15-30% of the premiums paid.
SB 450 (Vogel) Passed Senate 39-1 Passed House 100-0
Requires health insurers that provide cancer chemotherapy to provide coverage for a prescribed, orally administered anti-cancer medication.
Honoring Veterans and Military Service Members
SB 114 (McDougle) Passed Senate 40-0 Carried Over to 2013 by
Adds veterans’ organizations to non-profit entities that qualify for tax exemptions.
SB 254 (Reeves) Passed Senate 39-0 Passed House 97-0
Increases the ratio of claims agents with the Department of Veterans Services to the number of veterans in the Commonwealth.
SB 508 (Wagner) Passed Senate 40-0 Never Taken Up by
Makes in-state tuition available for any member of the National Guard residing in Virginia through a grant program.
SB 527 (Garrett) Passed Senate 40-0 Passed House 100-0
Creates a preference in state hiring for members of the National Guard, adding 5 percent to the total points available.
SB 528 (Garrett) Passed Senate 39-0 Passed House 98-0
Allows a permanently disabled veteran to receive a combined hunting and freshwater fishing lifetime license at no cost.
Law Enforcement, Consumer Protection, and Public Safety
SB 66 (Stanley) Passed Senate 40-0 Tabled by House
“Caylee’s Law” that makes it a crime for a parent or guardian of a child under 12 to fail to report a child missing to law enforcement within a reasonable period of time.
SB 159 (Obenshain) Passed Senate 38-1 Passed House 77-19
Strengthens penalties for drug trafficking in the Commonwealth of Virginia.
SB 239 (Stuart) Passed Senate 37-3 Passed House 98-0
Expands the list of individuals required to report suspected child abuse and neglect to include those associated with or employed by a public organization responsible for the care of children and persons employed by a public or private institution of higher education.
SB 273 (Smith) Passed Senate 40-0 Passed House 97-0
Amends criminalization of synthetic marijuana to add newly identified chemical combinations.
SB 314 (Blevins) Passed Senate 40-0 Passed House 98-0
Changes method for determining if a prisoner or defendant is a sexually violent predator.
SB 330 (Carrico) Passed Senate 40-0 Passed House 98-0
Tightens restrictions on coal mine mapping and worker safety.
SB 345 (McDougle) Passed Senate 39-0 Tabled by House
Raises penalty for gang recruitment.
SB 369 (Reeves) Passed Senate 32-6 Passed House 98-0
Mandates that insurers must state in their policies whether fire insurance covers earthquakes.
SB 431 (Stuart) Passed Senate 39-0 Tabled by House
Creates protection for seniors who are incapacitated from losing their assets due to fraud.
SB 436 (Obenshain) Passed Senate 27-13 Passed House 70-24
Imposes mandatory minimum life sentence for certain sex crimes against children under 13.