The 2017 General Assembly adjourned at the end of February. Throughout the 46-day session, we considered thousands of bills. Most of the bills that ultimately passed and were signed by the Governor will go into effect on July 1.
Every year, the General Assembly publishes a comprehensive list of bills that are likely to affect your everyday life. Below, I have highlighted the major accomplishments. You can read the entire list here http://dls.virginia.gov/pubs/idc/idc17.pdf
The General Assembly produced a conservative, responsible and balanced amended state budget ahead of schedule for the third year in a row. The budget reduces debt by about $61 million and saves $10.8 million G.F. for use in the budget. The budget includes no tax increases, eliminates all of the Governor’s fees such as the restaurant inspection fee and shellfish inspection fee. The budget includes a 3% salary increase for state employees and faculty and a 2% salary adjustment for all state-supported local employees. It also gives all teachers a 2% raise.
We passed legislation that allows individuals the right to re-sell their electronic ticket. The law prohibits any person that issues tickets for admission to a professional concert, professional sporting event, or professional theatrical production, open to the public for which tickets are ordinarily sold, from issuing the ticket solely through a delivery method that substantially prevents the ticket purchaser from lawfully reselling the ticket on the Internet ticketing platform of the ticket purchaser’s choice.
The General Assembly passed legislation that fines drivers $100 who fail to drive on the right side of the highway.
Under new legislation, public school principals will be required to notify the parents of any student involved in a bullying case within five days, including the status of the investigation.
The General Assembly passed a number of new laws to fight the opioid epidemic. Measures include establishing a needle exchange program and increased access to the overdose-reversal drug naloxone.
Legislation passed mandates that public colleges and universities must report to the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia the value of investments every year. Legislation also requires that schools must also give notice of any proposals to increase tuition and fees.
A new law allows hunters to wear blaze pink instead of blaze orange hunting apparel when required during firearms deer hunting season or the special season for hunting deer with a muzzle-loading rifle.
I encourage you to keep in touch with me and my office. I value the feedback you provide as it helps me do my job representing you better. You can email me at DelMFariss@virginia.house.gov or call me at (434)821-5929. You can also join the conversation on our social media page at www.facebook.com/DelegateMattFariss.