Janaury 9, 2016 Newsletter

I first want to urge you to get out and vote for Mark Peake in the 22nd District race on Tuesday, January 10th. It is imperative that we keep the Senate control in the hands of Republicans and Mark is just the person we need in representing us in the Senate. Senate District 22, which is made up of all of Amherst County, Appomattox County, Buckingham County, Cumberland County, Fluvanna County, Goochland County, part of Louisa County, and part of the City of Lynchburg, is open after State Senator Tom Garrett (R) defeated Jane Dittmar (D) in the congressional race for Virginia’s 5th district seat.

The Virginia General Assembly is scheduled to convene Wednesday in Richmond for a 30-working-day session expected to conclude Feb. 25. Balancing the budget is expected to be the first order of business after Governor McAuliffe announced in late December that fiscal 2015-16 general fund revenues increased by about half the projected rate and – when combined with lower defense department employment due to sequestration and other factors – the state has a $1.2 billion budget shortfall.

Budget cutbacks, economic development and energy are among issues chief on the minds of myself and my fellow Virginia lawmakers heading back into session.

This will be the final session during the term of Gov. McAuliffe, who is not eligible to run for reelection.

The governor and the legislature will need to take action to erase the projected budget deficit, and I expect the two branches will battle over the best way to do that as well as other proposed legislation, especially any having to do with social issues where Governor McAuliffe has already signaled planned vetoes of proposed bills.

My staff and I have been hard at work preparing for the upcoming legislative session and the big move to Richmond. It is my plan to put forth a significant amount of bills this session, a majority of which have come from the people of the 59th District.

I have an open door policy at my office in the General Assembly Building in Richmond. Please feel free to call my session legislative aide, Cindy Blanks-Shearin, and schedule a visit to my office and the rest of the Capitol during the 2017 General Assembly Session.

My district office in Rustburg will also be of service, as my full time legislative aide, Jenna Fulmer, will be in the office to help take up any issues you may have. She can be reached at friendsofmattfariss@gmail.com or (434)821-5929.

I look forward to hearing from you in the next few weeks, and I thank you for allowing me the opportunity to be your voice in the House of Delegates. If I can be of any assistance to you or your family in the meantime, please do not hesitate to contact my Richmond office at DelMFariss@House.Virginia.gov or (804) 698-1059. 

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