Thursday, April 4, 2013
The vote divided Loudoun's delegation to the General Assembly, and not just along party lines.
By Mark Robinson Capital News Service The General Assembly on Wednesday narrowly approved an amendment by Gov. Bob McDonnell that will prohibit certain health insurance companies in Virginia from providing coverage for women seeking an abortion. McDonnell added the anti-abortion amendment to House Bill 1900, sponsored by Delegate Thomas Davis Rust (R-86)), who ultimately voted against it. The assembly passed the bill in February to comply with the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Under the system, Virginians who cannot afford health insurance will participate in a federally operated health insurance exchange. McDonnell’s amendment will prohibit insurers participating in the exchange from covering abortion except in the …
Thursday, February 21, 2013
Loudoun supervisors raise concerns about the requirement for a countywide C&I tax.
Thursday, February 21
UPDATE: Loudoun Supervisors learned that counties dedicating 2¢ of real estate taxes to transportation do not have to establish a countywide C&I district. Supervisors plan to watch closely as the legislators finalize the bill and send it to Gov. McDonnell to make sure such provision remains. By Whitney Spicer Capital News Service RICHMOND – Negotiators from both the House and Senate came to an agreement Wednesday on a transportation plan that, if passed, would be the first transportation funding overhaul in Virginia since 1986. “This is a huge moment for Virginia,” said Sen. Frank W. Wagner (R-Virginia Beach) a member of the conference committee. “We are on the cusp of bringing home real and lasting transportation solutions that will move…
Sunday, February 10, 2013
This Loudoun parent sees more opportunities to help her community in bill before General Assembly.
Sunday, February 10
Dear Editor, I was thrilled to read in the Ashburn Patch that the Telework Tax Credit Bill, led by Delegates David Ramadan (Chief Patron) and Barbara Comstock (Co-Patron) was passed by the Virginia House of Delegates Monday with bi-partisan support. The bill will provide a $250 tax credit to employees who telecommute at least 25 hours a week, 45 weeks a year. This tax credit would certainly be an added bonus to the existing benefits I receive in working from home, which cast an incredibly wide net. These benefits include more time with family, greater output for my employer and the ability to volunteer in my community, just to name a few. In 2007, I was provided the opportunity to telecommute full time and I’ve worked remotely ever since. …
Thursday, February 7, 2013
Funding package was derailed by Virginia Senate Democrats late Tuesday, though the House version of the legislation still has a chance for approval.
Thursday, February 7
By Whitney Spicer and Alix Hines, Capital News Service All 20 of Virginia's Democratic senators — including Loudoun-area Sens. Mark Herring (D-33) and Barbara Favola (D-31) — voted against Gov. Bob McDonnell's transportation plan late Tuesday, effectively blocking the Senate's version of the proposal for this legislative session. The move makes it less likely Gov. Bob McDonnell will pass a transportation package in his last year in office. While the House amended and approved a version of the plan, HB 2313, earlier Tuesday, sending it to the Senate Finance Committee, Senate Democrats "vowed to block any proposal that generated less than $1.2 billion a year in new roads money," the Washington Examiner reports. That opposition is what …
Wednesday, February 6, 2013
Supporters are 'optimistic' about the bill becoming law next year.
The Virginia DREAM Act — legislation that would have allowed children of illegal immigrants to receive in-state college tuition — has died in Richmond, but supporters are optimistic the bill will pass next year. "I was encouraged," said Del. Tom Rust (R-86), who represents part of eastern Loudoun. "The bill has never gotten this far before. In fact, it's never gotten anywhere. I was encouraged by the response. It got a lot of support. I will be introducing it again next year, and I will be working on it between now and then." For the past seven years, similar legislation has died in a House subcommittee. This year, though, the measure enjoyed bipartisan, unanimous support on the subcommittee level, and it then passed the full House …
Monday, February 4, 2013
The Virginia governor urges passage of measures, including increased ‘straw-man’ penalties, 20 years for taking firearm into school.
Monday, February 4
By Blake Belden Capital News Service RICHMOND – Gov. Bob McDonnell is urging state legislators to approve recommendations from his School and Campus Safety Task Force that would increase sentences for illegally buying guns, require mandatory lockdown drills at schools and establish more comprehensive suicide prevention programs. McDonnell (R) sent the General Assembly a letter Friday outlining the panel’s initial recommendations. “I am pleased to report that the Taskforce has provided me with a number of initial recommendations that the members believe will help make our schools and campuses safer,” McDonnell wrote. “After reviewing their initial recommendations, I agree that these will help make our schools and campuses more secure.” The …
Saturday, January 26, 2013
Vice President holds panel with Sen. Tim Kaine and other leaders on gun safety, gun laws, expanding mental health.
Saturday, January 26
By Katherine Johnson and Mechelle Hankerson, Capital News Service Vice President Joe Biden held a round-table discussion about gun violence Friday at Virginia Commonwealth University, saying “we cannot remain silent” on the issue. The discussion was closed to the public, but in remarks outside the panel he said the group reached a “broad consensus” that certain parties should be denied access to guns. They include convicted felons, those guilty of domestic violence and those who are legally found to not be capable because of mental capacity. Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano, Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius and Deputy U.S. Attorney General Jim Cole joined Biden for the discussion. Virginia officials …
Tuesday, January 15, 2013
Senate bills could keep option pushed by Gov. McDonnell alive this session.
Tuesday, January 15
By Sam Isaacs Capital News Service RICHMOND – Gov. Bob McDonnell and other key Republicans, as well as Democratic legislators, say they are disappointed that a House subcommittee today killed proposals to automatically restore the voting rights of nonviolent felons who have served their prison sentences. “I am very disappointed in today’s vote against these constitutional amendments. Once individuals have served their time and paid their fines, restitution and other costs, they should have the opportunity to rejoin society as fully contributing members,” McDonnell said. The constitutional amendments subcommittee of the House Privileges and Elections Committee considered, and folded together, nine constitutional amendments introduced by …
Thursday, January 10, 2013
Lawmakers gather at Capitol.
The Virginia General Assembly convened Wednesday for its 2013 session at the state Capitol in Richmond with lots of hot-button issues before them such as transportation, school security, gun laws and uranium mining. As they arrived today, lawmakers likely saw several hundred protesting demonstrators on both sides of the abortion debate demonstrating outside of the Capitol. According to Richmond Sunlight, the 100 members of the House of Delegates have filed 1,153 bills and the 40 members of the Senate have filed 597. The 140 elected representatives are from an equal number of constituent districts across the commonwealth. The House of Delegates is presided over by the Speaker of the House. The Senate is presided over by the Lieutenant …
Tuesday, October 2, 2012
Loudoun Chamber president Tony Howard makes the case for additional state transportation funding and cooperation in the General Assembly.
Tuesday, October 2, 2012
Last month, the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority held several public hearings to gather public input on the proposal to raise tolls on the Dulles Toll Road to pay for Virginia‘s share of the Dulles Rail Project. Though these toll hikes are planned to fund Virginia’s share of the project, MWAA was the one vilified by the opponents of this project. On Oct. 17, the Loudoun Board of Supervisors will stage a public hearing on the proposal to create two special tax districts in eastern Loudoun to pay for the County’s share of the project. No doubt the loyal opposition will again be out in force to oppose these tax districts and the completion of the Dulles Rail Project that is favored by 80 percent of Loudoun residents. But even …