by Del. Margaret Ransone
As your representative in the House of Delegates, I am here to serve the people. In Richmond, this session highlights were healthcare and tax reform. I know Virginia is in the national spotlight for many reasons, but our work as citizen legislators must move forward for the people, politics aside.
Wednesday, February 6, we reached the crossover point and are now starting to hear the Senate bills in subcommittee. I am also presenting my bills in the Senate committees. This week we also heard budget amendments that include teacher pay raise, funding for school safety grant fund, increased broadband funding and the final budget will be decided over the next few weeks.
Here are short summaries of my bills that passed the House and have now moved to the Senate:
House Bill 1620, increases the membership of the State Board of Elections from three members to six members. Equal representation shall be given to each of the political parties. Appointments shall be made by the governor considering geographical representation and no two board members may reside in the same congressional district. The board chooses the commissioner.
House Bill 1640, requires health insurers and health service plan providers to accept insurance. This also allows for autonomous practice for nurse practitioners.
House Bill 1787, adds threats of death or bodily injury to another person communicated in writing to such person or member of such person’s family and threats to commit serious bodily harm to persons on school property to the listing of offenses that a juvenile intake officer is required to report to the school division superintendent.
House Bill 1895, updates the Town of Irvington’s boundary description. Other changes replace outdated provisions regarding the timing of town council elections and the mayor’s duties.
House Bill 2107, requires local school boards to develop and implement policies that ensure parents the right to review any audio-visual materials that contain graphic sexual or violent content used in any anti-bullying or suicide prevention program.
House Bill 2355, advances conformity of the Commonwealth’s tax code with the federal tax code to December 31, 2018, including conformity to the federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA).
House Bill 2529, allows taxpayers to itemize their state taxes regardless of how they file their federal taxes. The legislation also increases the state standard deduction.
House Bill 1811, prohibits the use of handheld devices while operating a vehicle.
House Bill 1887, requires the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority and the Virginia Employment Commission to post notices online and in stores, information regarding a human trafficking hotline. The information details ways to report crimes but also gain assistance if you are a victim.
House Bill 2059, provides that an individual who is delinquent in child support payments must adhere to a payment plan to pay arrears. The bill gives DMV authority to renew, suspend or refuse to renew a license if the Department of Social Services sends a delinquent notice.
We continue to work over the next three weeks on Senate bills and the budget.
The General Assembly established the Outstanding Virginian Award to honor recipients whose distinguished contributions, outstanding achievements and dedicated leadership serve as an inspiration to all civic-minded citizens. This year the Honorable W. Tayloe Murphy Jr. and his wife, Helen, are the recipients of the prestigious award and they recently were honored on the House floor.
As always, I am truly honored to represent the 99th District. Please contact my office at 698-1099 or firstname.lastname@example.org if you have questions or concerns related to state government.