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2016 Legislation

Consumer and Worker Protections

SB 305 Requires asbestos workers to be provided with basic written information on safety precautions and how to file complaints.
Signed by Governor McAuliffe and will take effect July 1, 2016.
SB 8 Prohibits car title lenders from opening an office within 20 miles of a casino.
Defeated in the Senate Commerce and Labor Committee.
SB 324 Makes it a felony to intentionally defraud an employee of $10,000 or more in wages.
Defeated in the Senate Commerce and Labor Committee.

Transportation

SB 431 Lowers penalties for HOT Lanes toll violations and caps associated fees.
Defeated in the Senate Transportation Tolling Subcommittee.
SB 710 Changes the WMATA Metro Compact to allow for federal representatives to be appointed by the US Department of Transportation.
Passed both chambers unanimously and awaiting the Governor's signature.
SB 299 Allows publicly owned or operated transit buses to use flashing amber lights.
Passed both chambers unanimously and awaiting the Governor's signature.

Gun Violence Prevention

SB 300 Makes carrying a loaded firearm while intoxicated a criminal offense.
Defeated in the Senate Finance Committee.
SB 301 Closes the gun show loophole and enacts background checks on all firearms purchases.
Incorporated into SB220 by Senator McEachin (D-Henrico) and defeated by the Senate Courts of Justice Committee.
SB 302 Prohibits adults from allowing children under age 4 to handle firearms and requires that children ages 5-12 are supervised by an adult when handling firearms.
Defeated in the Senate Courts of Justice Committee.

Immigration

SB 435 Creates an Office of Immigrant Assistance to assist with legal immigration and citizenship application processes as well as employment, housing and additional services.
Defeated in the Senate Finance Committee.

Elections and Voting Rights

SB 772 Requires online training to be available to election officers.
Incorporated into SB574 by Senator McEachin (D-Henrico); passed both chambers and awaiting the Governor’s signature.
SB 303 Requires the State Board of Elections to meet in advance of an election to hear any pending allegations of campaign violations instead of waiting until after the election.
Defeated in the Senate Privileges and Elections committee.
SB 420 Provides that individuals convicted of a felony or adjudicated mentally incapacitated who have had their voting rights restored do not need to specify the exact date of the restoration of their voting rights on voter registration applications.
Passed both chambers and awaiting the Governor’s signature.

Social & Criminal Justice

SB 771 Preserves the confidentiality of human trafficking victims as currently provided to victims of sexual or domestic violence.
Incorporated into SB253 by Senator DeSteph (R-Virginia Beach); passed both chambers unanimously and awaiting the Governor’s signature.
SB 322 Requires state prisons to charge the lowest available rates and not impose any additional fees on inmates’ phone calls.
Passed the Senate 37-2 but defeated in the House Appropriations Committee.
SB 104 Reduces penalty for possession of marijuana from a criminal offense to a civil penalty.
Defeated in the Senate Courts of Justice Committee.
SB 327 Repeals the requirement for suspension of a driver’s license for marijuana possession.
Passed the Senate 31-9 but defeated in the House Courts of Justice Committee.
SB 306 Allows couples the ability to designate a marriage officiant on their marriage license application.
Incorporated into SB145 by Senator Edwards (D-Roanoke) and defeated by the Senate Courts of Justice Committee.
SB 424 Restores photographs to state-issued identification cards carried by private investigators.
Passed both chambers unanimously and signed by Governor McAuliffe (effective July 1, 2017.)

LGBT Equality

SB 12 Prohibits LGBT discrimination in public employment.
Passed the Senate 25-15 but referred by the House General Laws Committee to the Code Commission.
SJ 2 Repeals the Virginia constitutional amendment prohibiting same-sex marriage.
Continued to the 2017 legislative session.
SB 10 Removes provisions in the Code of Virginia prohibiting same-sex marriage.
Continued to the 2017 legislative session.

Energy and the Environment

SB 403 Creates the Virginia Energy Storage Consortium, a public-private partnership that seeks to make the commonwealth a leader in grid-scale energy storage solutions.
Continued to the 2017 legislative session.
SJ 87 Directs the Virginia Housing Commission to study mandatory recycling programs for multifamily residential dwellings.
Passed the Senate by voice vote but defeated in the House Rules Committee.

State Government

SJ 50 Allows for a Governor to serve two consecutive terms.
Continued to the 2017 legislative session.
SB 711 Establishes a Commission to commemoration the 100th Anniversary of Women’s Suffrage.
Passed the Senate 39-0  but defeated in the House Appropriations Committee.
SB 304 Removes specification of the length of the ethics training session.
Incorporated into SB692 by Senator Norment (R-James City); passed both chambers and awaiting the Governor’s signature.

ABC

SB 373 Modifies definitions of what counts as a meal or “substantial” food for restaurants licensed by ABC to serve mixed beverages.
Passed the Senate 40-0 but defeated in the House General Laws Committee.

Local Government

SB 481 Requires owners of vacant or derelict buildings to register those properties on a local Vacant Building Registry.
Defeated in the Senate Local Government Committee.

 

Last updated 03.15.16