Tuesday, April 26, 2016

On July 1st Virginia Bills HB305/HB1190/SB666 Will Become Law Mandating RSO’s Be Prohibited from Owning Specialty License Plates that Support ALL Children-Related Charities But It Will Also Prohibit Their Spouses, Parents and Children Who Co-Own the Vehicles From Having the Plates Too

During the 2016 Virginia General Assembly session SB666 was expanded with an amendment, HB305 was “left in Committee” because the patron decided to piggy-back as a co-patron on HB 1190 . Then HB 1190 was amended to be identical to SB666, turning them into “Companion Bills”. 

I tracked these Bills through the 2016 GA session for blog readers:
·         December 30, 2015
·         January 22, 2016
·         January 29, 2016
·         February 2, 2016
·         February 8, 2016
·         February 23, 2016
·         February 26, 2016
·         March 1, 2016
·         March 2, 2016 

And after session:
·         March 20, 2016
·         March 24, 2016
·         March 25, 2016
·         April 23,2016 

They both passed through both chambers unanimously, not one Virginia Delegate or Senator voted against them. 

They were both signed by Governor Terry McAuliffe and will become law on July 1st 2016. 

What will SB666 and HB 1190 do?
A.    They’d  prohibit the Virginia DMV from issuing to registered sex offenders special license plates relating to children or children's programs or with revenues paid to funds for the benefit of children or renewing the registration for a vehicle that has been issued such license plates.  

Definitely include the following License Plates:
1.       Virginia Family and Children’s Trust Fund Kid’s First
2.      Virginia Family and Children’s Trust Fund Child Trust Heart
3.      Virginia Family and Children’s Trust Fund Child Trust Hand
4.      Virginia Family and Children’s Trust Fund Child Trust Star
5.       Virginia Cure Childhood Cancer
6.      Virginia Unlocking Autism
7.       Virginia Kid’s Eat Free
Ø       A total of 19,869 Total License Plates are in circulation*
Ø       13 are registered to VSP Registered Sex Offenders*
Ø       Of those 13, 7 are co-owned* 

Might include the following License Plates because they bear images of children:
8.      Virginia Choose Life
9.      Virginia Drive Out Diabetes
Ø       7,247 Total License Plates are in circulation*
Ø       7 are registered to VSP Registered Sex Offenders*
Ø       Of those 7, 3 are co-owned* 

B.    They’d also provide that the Virginia DMV shall not issue or renew personalized license plates to registered sex offenders if the requested personalization relates to or references children.

                                                                                                         *Data came from 4 - January/February 2016 FOIA requests.

A VA-DMV Specialty Plate is NOT a government certification that the driver is an endorsed representative it’s an expression of speech and support by our citizens. 

There is NO OTHER group of Virginians who is prohibited from obtaining a DMV-offered Specialty Plate. 

There is NO OTHER group of Virginians who is prohibited from supporting a charity organization of their choosing. 

There is NO OTHER group of Virginians who is subjected to an unspecified review by the VA-DMV for non-obscene letter/number combinations that may be directed towards a particular segment of our population. The VA-DMV is just going to create an internal policy saying no VSP RSO can have a vanity license plate because they won’t want to be bothered with a review process and the chance they might miss a “reference”. 

NO Virginia Legislator has proposed a similar ban against anyone convicted of Animal Abuse from owning a Virginia Animal Friendly Specialty Plate. 
20 VSP Registered Sex Offender owned vehicles will have their Specialty licenses revoked when the re-registration is due (after July 1st) and of those 20 plates, 10 are co-owned. That means because of someone else’s past-conviction from 5, 10, 15 or even 20 years ago the State of Virginia is now penalizing anyone who is related to them. 

In Virginia someone else’s conviction will now determine what rights and freedoms YOU may or may not have within the Commonwealth.
Why? Because they are Registered Sex Offenders and no one cares about them. We can monitor, manage, restrict, mandate and regulate ANYTHING about them because everyone thinks they have the right to know everything about them. 

What freedom will Virginia take away from the RSO’s next year or the year after that? 

If the Virginia Legislature and Governor can do this to RSO’s and their family members, what group will they target next? 

First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Socialist. 

Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Trade Unionist. 

Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Jew. 

Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.

                                                                                    - Martin Niemöller

No one cares about HB1190/SB666 becoming law on July 1st but the fact is every single Virginian should care. 

For 20 years Virginia has continued to expand the laws against and demonize those listed on the VSP Registry. The multitude of restrictions, regulations and mandates continue to push them to the fringes and NOW we are sweeping up and punishing their loved-ones too. 

What will be taken away next? 

Who will be swept up next? 

As long as no one cares, no one speaks up, no one questions the Constitutionality and the inhumanity of it all…the sky’s the limit. 

Mary Devoy