GENERAL ASSEMBLY 2021

Virginia lawmakers sent legislation to Gov. Ralph Northam Friday that for the first time will provide a path to seal past criminal convictions, records lawmakers and advocates say can make it impossible for people to rebuild their lives."Millions of Virginians with criminal histories will gain the ability to potentially...
With ambitious efforts underway to reduce carbon output from the power and transportation sectors, Virginia is preparing to figure out exactly how extensive the state’s greenhouse gas emissions are. This week, a bill from Sen. Joe Morrissey, D-Richmond, that would allow the state Department of Environmental Quality to conduct a...
Virginia schools will be required to provide in-person instruction by this summer under a bill passed by both chambers of the General Assembly.The Senate voted nearly unanimously on Thursday to accept a compromise bill developed in collaboration with House Democrats. Democrats in both chambers resisted multiple attempts to add...
With a Saturday deadline approaching, state lawmakers in the House and Senate are still working to resolve differences over landmark legislation that would legalize recreational marijuana in Virginia.As of Thursday evening, it was unclear whether the two chambers would be able to reach an agreement on the bill, which...
Two Virginia senators are asking for a “clear and transparent” General Assembly investigation into alleged wrongdoing by the Virginia Parole Board, which is under scrutiny for failing to follow state law and its own procedures by releasing violent offenders without properly notifying victims’ families or the prosecutors who represent the...
A Virginia law that will ban all restaurants and food vendors from using polystyrene food containers by July 2025 is on its way to the governor.Under the legislation, which has been carried by Del. Betsy Carr, D-Richmond, two years running, large restaurants and food vendors --- defined as those...
By Cameron Jones/ Capital News Service The Virginia General Assembly passed two bills that repeal the ban keeping some health insurance plans sold in the state from covering abortions House Bill 1896, introduced by Del. Sally L. Hudson, D-Charlottesville, and Senate Bill 1276, introduced by Sen. Jennifer L. McClellan, D-Richmond, loosen...
Legislation to classify chemical recycling as manufacturing rather than solid waste management is on its way to the governor despite early resistance from the House of Delegates. The hotly contested bill, which supporters say will encourage the repurposing of plastic waste while creating jobs and opponents say will allow the...
We don’t have to. So we ain’t gonna.That’s been the response by law-enforcement agencies in Virginia to requests for records and details from the public, virtually all of the time. The state’s feckless Freedom of Information Act provides an easy escape hatch for many government agencies, including police. Unless FOIA...
A proposal to make it illegal for Virginia politicians to use campaign funds to enrich themselves failed in the state Senate Tuesday, the latest sign of the legislature’s continuing wariness on campaign finance reform.Several senators said they agreed with the proposal generally, but insisted policymakers should take more time...