The Virginia Crime Commission will be holding a public hearing on August 20th regarding gun violence prevention legislation and is accepting written comments. Take a look at Adam's draft language for written comments.
Nearly all of the 883 new laws passed during the 2019 Virginia General Assembly session went into effect midnight, July 1. Here are some that will most impact your daily life:
Review Senator Adam Ebbin's legislation introduced during the 2019 General Assembly session.
Successes and noteable efforts from the 2019 General Assembly Session
Hear Senator Ebbin's updates on the 2019 General Assembly Session
As that special legislative session to consider gun control measures loomed earlier this month, Ebbin spent several days prepping at the statehouse with advocacy groups such as March for Our Lives, and passed part of the opening day at a peace vigil alongside Governor Ralph Northam, Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney, and other politicians. Then, an hour and a half after the session began, Republican lawmakers abruptly adjourned the session, promising to reconvene after November’s elections. “The corporate gun lobby is a powerful force,” Ebbin says, “and I think we’re representing the majority of Virginians trying to push forward.”
Reeves sort of apologized to Ebbin: “I certainly meant no disrespect to him or anyone in the LGBTQ community,” he told the Richmond Times-Dispatch. Ebbin says the two have been in touch briefly since the comments surfaced. He’s saddened by the rift, but he says it makes fits the tone set by the current occupant of the White House. “As long as the current president is in office, Trump will divide people among Virginia just as he is across the country.” As an important election approaches, Ebbin says, “you never know what tactics Republicans will turn to next.”
As elected officials, it is our job to assess problems and solutions to protect the best interests of our constituents. In this case, this means taking immediate action on practical approaches to prevent gun violence. We can do this in a way that still allows Virginians to possess firearms whether for self-defense, hunting, or sport.
Yet, on the morning of July 9, 2019, with the eyes of the nation focused on Richmond, and hundreds of activists and advocates from across our Commonwealth gathered on the sloping lawn of Capitol Square, Virginia Republicans adjourned the special session in less than 90 minutes without any discussion, floor votes or committee consideration.
They summarily sent all gun violence prevention legislation to the Crime Commission for “study.” The General Assembly will not resume the special session or consider gun violence prevention legislation until after this November’s election — conveniently allowing the embattled majority to skip out on votes related to this important issue.
This was a callous and calculated attempt to silence the voices of Virginians.
A new bill in the Virginia General Assembly, introduced by Sen. Adam Ebbin (D-30), would attempt to combat this issue by imposing a state tax on e-cigarettes. “Anything we can do to stop more young people from getting hooked is desirable,” said Ebbin. “Right now there’s no tax on e-cigarette products other than the sales tax. If you’re going to tax tobacco, there’s no reason you shouldn’t tax other tobacco products that have a profound health impact.”
But more than 7,400 low-income children in the state of Virginia could not attend any early education provider in the state because of lacking funding and limited space, according to the Common Wealth Institute, a local think tank.
“Pre-K is really a great equalizer,” says Adam Ebbin, a Democratic state senator on the school readiness committee. “If children don’t come to school knowing the letters of the alphabet, shapes, colors and numbers, they are not on the same level of their peers and more likely to fall behind.”
Ebbin says his team is currently involved in a study that will measure which early education government programs show the best results for students in places such as Alexandria and Fairfax. He says the study is ongoing and does not have a due date yet, but they hope to use that information to inform their work.
Supporters of marijuana decriminalization say the track record for change in Virginia has been dispiriting, but they are cautiously optimistic. State Sen. Adam P. Ebbin (D-Alexandria), who has sponsored bills on changing marijuana laws, said the recent primary victories by like-minded commonwealth’s attorney candidates has been encouraging.
Candidates who favor dropping marijuana prosecutions recently won primaries in Arlington and Fairfax counties, two of the state’s largest jurisdictions. They unseated incumbents with stricter stances on marijuana.