Sunday, January 11, 2015

2015 Virginia General Assembly Begins in 3 Days Are You Ready?

On Wednesday January 14th the 2015 Virginia General Assembly session begins in Richmond, VA. 

The bills have been rolling in (posted on LIS) and they will continue to until January 26th (deadline is the 23rd but that is for the Legislator to get it to Legislative Services, not for Legislative Services to post it in LIS for us to read). 

I have already posted Action Items against numerous bills that we know about: 

HB1353 and SB934 –AKA Robby’s Rule:
·         January 7, 2015
·         January 1, 2015
·         December 2, 2014 

HB1366 A Parents Private Petition Hearing to Participate in Their Child’s Education Being Publicized and Open to the Public:
·         January 1, 2015
·         December 4, 2014 

HB1503Residency Restrictions and Contact with Victim Becomes a Felony with No consideration of Family Members, Rehabilitation, Restorative Justice, Housing Needs or Homeownership:
·         January 5, 2015 

HB1526Criminalizing 13, 14, 15 16 and 17 year olds “Chat”
·         January 11, 2015 

If you have not taken action on the four above bills yet, please do today because there will be more bills with action items to come.

When you send an email to your Delegate and Senator, stick to one issue/bill don't bulk multiple bills into one email even if they are all by the same patron. Keep it simple, factual and short. Adding a personal story or experience (not too long or too much detail) is always good. Also be sure to list the bill number in your Subject line and advise them you are a constituent from their district in the body of your email.

Do you know who your current State Delegate and Senator are?  

Two General Assembly pages to keep an eye on:
2015 Virginia G.A. - Committee Members     (I will update this page somewhere between 01/14 and 01/20- Mary)

I will be handing out the following brochures at this year’s session:
  1. September 2014 –  Dissemination of Info Rack Card
  2. September 2014 –  Legal Do’s and Don’ts Brochure
  3. October 2014 -  Building a Better Registry Brochure
You can track proposed bills (legislation) as they are posted and move through the process two ways. 

A)     Virginia General Assembly Website, 

                                Bills are post almost immediately on this website. 

                                How to Track a Bill, 

                                Sign up for Lobbyist-in-a-Box Service: 

·        You may track up to 5 bills in one Lobbyist-in-a-Box "profile" without a fee. You can also sign-up for email notification triggered by the bill sponsor when bill is referred to a House or Senate Committee or bill contains specific key word(s), phrases, or Code section(s). 

·        A subscription to Lobbyist-in-a-Box with an unlimited quantity of bills also offers the ability to create multiple profiles, each containing bill lists and notification options. The cost of this service is $400 for state agencies and $600 for all other subscribers.   

Note: I’ve tracked bills, hearings and votes for 6 sessions (2009-2014) without paying for this service. You can stay current and informed without spending this excessive amount. -Mary  

Email notification triggers an email when bills are sponsored by a member of the General Assembly, referred to a House or Senate Committee or contain specific key word(s), phrases, or Code section(s).  

                Lobbyist-in-a-Box Guidelines, 

                Review Past Virginia Sessions (1994-2014) Legislation,  

B)     Richmond Sunlight Website  

                You can post comments publicly and you can create your own list of bills to track for no charge.  

But there is no email notification for bills being posted, assigned to a committee and placed on a hearing docket, any amendments or bill movement.  

               You must remember to check each bill everyday with this site. 

Thank you for following this blog, my advocacy and taking action against proposed legislation that is not based on facts, research or proven programs. Or that does not support the successful re-entry of former offenders back into our communities allowing them to support themselves, their families and to become contributing members of society. 

Myth, hate, prejudice, vengeance and fear are emotional tactics that may work in political campaigns but they have NO place in creating our laws or in justice being served to all of our citizens.