General Assembly

General Assembly
4:37 pm
Thu February 20, 2014

The Tale of Two Budgets

It was budget day at the State Capitol.  The House and Senate mull over and pass their respective budget proposals, which are then sent to the opposite chambers. That's typically when the lines in the sand are drawn.  Although each version makes significant changes in former Governor McDonnell's 96-billion dollar draft, the lines were drawn well before today over one issue—Medicaid expansion.

Read more
General Assembly
4:20 pm
Thu February 13, 2014

Human Trafficking Legislation Moves Forward

While not all bills to crack down on human trafficking in Virginia have survived the halfway point in the General Assembly, lawmakers believe they've made progress in battling what's now considered one of the fastest—if not the fastest—growing financial crime worldwide.

They have agreed that this is not a partisan issue.  Lawmakers were able to work across both chambers and party lines to develop new guidelines to assist victims and law enforcement officials. 

Read more
Government & Politics
4:57 pm
Wed February 12, 2014

General Assembly Update

Virginia House Speaker Bill Howell and other GOP members of that chamber are characterizing the first half of the General Assembly session as a success.

Howell says many of their key initiatives have passed, and they worked well with Democrats. But when asked if the House will work with the Senate on passing Medicaid expansion, GOP leaders still say they just don't see that happening.

Read more
Lieutenant Governor as Tie-Breaker
4:43 pm
Tue February 11, 2014

VA Senate Votes Down Ultrasound Mandate

The Virginia Senate has approved legislation to repeal the state law passed two years ago that requires women to have an ultrasound before undergoing an abortion.  The measure was initially defeated—then in a dramatic reversal, was revived.

Bill sponsor Senator Mamie Locke said ultrasounds may not be medical necessary, and those that are can be performed without this law.

Read more
General Assembly
8:43 am
Tue February 11, 2014

Mental Health Custody Issue Moves Forward

Sen. Creigh Deeds

A person in a mental health crisis may be kept in custody for evaluation for up to 24 hours under legislation that has cleared the Virginia Senate. 

The new, 24-hour limit passed over the objections of some in the law enforcement community, who worried that such a lengthy period may divert deputy sheriffs who are detaining the patient from other public safety priorities.

But the bill passed unanimously after an impassioned plea from the Senator who was most recently impacted by flaws in the state’s mental health system.

Read more

Pages