Public employment discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity would be prohibited under legislation that has passed the Virginia Senate. The bill inserts a policy into state law that has been adopted through executive order by Governor McAuliffe and several other gubernatorial
administrations. The commonwealth’s Lieutenant Governor played a key role in the legislation’s passage.
Senator Barbara Favola argued that steps to prohibit workforce discrimination are needed.
Virginia’s Medicaid program provides healthcare for poor children, the elderly and disabled, but working adults rarely qualify. Experts say as many as 400,000 people could get insurance if the state were to expand its Medicaid program, but there’s another reason why some lawmakers support that idea – it could be good for the economy.
Opponents say Virginia can’t afford to expand Medicaid - even with the federal government paying 90-100% of the bill, but supporters say failing to expand the program will be even more expensive.
The Virginia Senate has shot down legislation to allow people with concealed-carry permits to possess a handgun on school property after normal school hours. The bill applied only to those times when no school-sponsored functions or extracurricular activities were taking place. Questions about how residents would determine which events are school-sponsored were an insurmountable hurdle to some lawmakers.
It’s not unusual for Attorneys General or Governors to hire counsel from private law firms when they believe they need special expertise or legal services. Now a bill to rein in spending and hold both officeholders accountable for outside counsel they seek on the taxpayer's dime has passed the State Senate. They also would have to explain why the special counsel IS in the public interest before entering into a contract.