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General Assembly; prefiling. Establishes a set day of the month for prefiling to begin. Currently, prefiling begins 60 days prior to even-numbered-year sessions and 180 days prior to the odd-numbered-year sessions. Pinpointing the date that prefiling begins has been challenging because the convening date for the session varies and the statute is unclear whether the first day of the session is included within the time allowed. The bill establishes the third Monday in November prior to even-numbered year sessions and the third Monday in July prior to odd-numbered year sessions for prefiling to begin. The bill provides that the deadline for prefiling legislation will be established by the procedural resolution of the General Assembly, or the Joint Rules Committee, if the General Assembly has not acted. This schedule is closest to the current prefiling period.
Patron - Griffith
Joint Commission on Health Care; cooperation of other agencies. Provides that upon request, every department, division, board, bureau, commission, authority or other agency created by the Commonwealth, and any political subdivision of the Commonwealth, shall cooperate with and assist the Commission in performance of its duties. Such provisions already exist in statute for other state commissions, such as the Virginia Crime Commission and the Virginia Commission on Youth.
Patron - Morgan
The Virginia Disability Commission. Establishes the Virginia Disability Commission ("Commission") as a legislative commission, with the purpose of identifying and recommending legislative priorities and policies that should be adopted or examined by the General Assembly in order to provide ongoing support in developing and reviewing services and funding related to Virginians with disabilities. The Commission shall consist of 12 members that include six legislative members, five nonlegislative citizen members, and the Lieutenant Governor. Of the five nonlegislative members, two shall be consumers with disabilities, two shall be members of the medical, insurance, or rehabilitation professions, and one shall be a citizen at large. The Lieutenant Governor shall continue to serve as chairman until January 14, 2006, at which time the chairmanship of the Commission shall be assumed by a legislative member. The bill provides that the Commission must seek approval from the Joint Rules Committee if it is not funded in the first year of its existence. If the Commission is not funded in the second year, the provisions of the statute creating the Commission will expire. There is a three-year sunset provision on this bill. This bill is identical to SB 381.
Patron - Van Landingham
Clarifications for certain collegial bodies. Conforms certain collegial body requirements to meet the legislative guidelines adopted by the Joint Rules Committees and codifies certain existing collegial bodies. These bodies include: the Institute for Advanced Learning and Research, the Commonwealth Council on Aging, Alzheimer's Disease and Related Disorders Commission, the Capitol Square Preservation Council, the Advisory Council on Career and Technical Education, the Chesapeake Bay Commission, the Chesapeake Bay Restoration Fund Advisory Committee, the Virginia Coal and Energy Commission, the Virginia Code Commission, the Virginia State Crime Commission, the Criminal Justice Services Board, the Criminal Sentencing Commission, the Advisory Board of Economists, the Commission on Electric Utility Restructuring, the Ethics Advisory Panels of the House and Senate, the Freedom of Information Advisory Council, the Council on Virginia's Future, the Geographic Information Network Advisory Board, the Hampton Roads Transportation District Commission, the Virginia Housing Study Commission, the Virginia Council on Human Resources, the Information Technology Investment Board, the Virginia Commission on Intergovernmental Cooperation, the Joint Legislative Audit and Review Commission, the Judicial Council, the Judicial Inquiry and Review Commission, the Advisory Committee on Juvenile Justice, the Legislative Support Commission, the Virginia Military Advisory Council, the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Commission, the Martin Luther King, Jr. Living History and Public Policy Center, the Northern Neck-Middle Peninsula Public Education Consortium, the Northern Virginia Transportation Authority, the Northern Virginia Transportation District Commission, the Potomac and Rappahannock Transportation District Commission, the Governing Board of the Virginia Office for Protection and Advocacy, the Virginia Public Buildings Board, the Public-Private Partnership Contracts Oversight Group, the Joint Reapportionment Committee, the Advisory Council on Revenue Estimates, the Roanoke Higher Education Authority, the Small Business Commission, the Small Business Environmental Compliance Advisory Board, the Southern Growth Policies Board, the Southern Regional Education Board, the Southern States Energy Board, the Board of Trustees of the Southwest Virginia Higher Education Center, the Board of Trustees of the Virginia Tobacco Settlement Foundation, the Board of Veterans' Services, the Board of Directors of the Virginia Commonwealth University Health System Authority, the Virginia Israel Advisory Board, the Board of Trustees of the Virginia Retirement System, Commission on Unemployment Compensation, the State Water Commission, the Statewide Coordinating Committee for the Medical Costs Peer Review Program under the Workers Compensation Act, the Workforce Council, and Virginia Commission on Youth.
Patron - Griffith
The Virginia Disability Commission. Establishes the Virginia Disability Commission ("Commission") as a legislative commission, with the purpose of identifying and recommending legislative priorities and policies that should be adopted or examined by the General Assembly in order to provide ongoing support in developing and reviewing services and funding related to Virginians with disabilities. The Commission shall consist of 12 members that include six legislative members, five nonlegislative citizen members, and the Lieutenant Governor. Of the five nonlegislative members, two shall be consumers with disabilities, two shall be members of the medical, insurance, or rehabilitation professions, and one shall be a citizen at large. The Lieutenant Governor shall continue to serve as chairman until January 14, 2006, at which time the chairmanship of the Commission shall be assumed by a legislative member. The bill provides that the Commission must seek approval from the Joint Rules Committee if it is not funded in the first year of its existence. If the Commission is not funded in the second year, the provisions of the statute creating the Commission will expire. There is a three-year sunset provision on this bill. This bill is identical to HB 817.
Patron - Puller
Joint Commission on Administrative Rules. This bill repeals the sunset clause that provided for the expiration of the Commission on June 30, 2004; deletes provisions prohibiting establishment of any full-time equivalent position to staff the Commission and permitting use of existing staff and transferred funds to assist the Commission; and retains the provision requiring the Division of Legislative Services to provide staff support.
Patron - Wagner
Unemployment compensation; bills affecting revenue of the Commonwealth. Provides that bills enhancing unemployment compensation benefits payable to a claimant must contain a statement prepared by the Virginia Employment Commission, in consultation with the Department of Planning and Budget, estimating potential revenue losses, in the form of decreased tax revenues, to the Commonwealth. The bill provides that no bill enhancing unemployment compensation benefits can be considered at a regular session of the General Assembly unless the bill contains the revenue loss statement in the second or final enactment clause.
Patron - Wagner
General Assembly; disclosure of office allowances. Requires members of the General Assembly who receive an allowance for office expenses and supplies provided by the general appropriation act to file an annual disclosure statement. The disclosure statement must be filed with the member's clerk no later than January 8, which coincides with the date members must file their statements of economic interests. The statement must include an account of all receipts and expenditures recorded during the prior calendar year. Unexpended balances must be carried forward and accounted for in the next reporting period. The bill exempts the disclosure of expense items of $25 or less that in combination do not exceed $250 during the reporting year.
Patron - Purkey
General Assembly; introduction limits. Prohibits a member of the General Assembly from introducing more than a combined total of 12 bills and resolutions during any regular session of the General Assembly. Exceptions to this limitation include legislation that (i) commends, congratulates or memorializes and is not referred to a standing committee under the rules of the respective house; (ii) relates to the administration of government and is introduced at the request of the Governor; or (iii) affects the procedures or schedule of the General Assembly. The provisions of the bill will expire on July 1, 2006.
Patron - Purkey
House of Delegates; office allowance subject to Freedom of Information Act. Provides explicitly that any record pertaining to the use of funds from the office allowance provided to members of the House of Delegates be opened to public inspection and copying under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). FOIA currently provides that nothing in the Act shall be construed to deny access to "records of allowances or reimbursements for expenses paid to any officer, official or employee of a public body." However, it is not clear whether the office allowance records of members are subject to disclosure under FOIA because current law does not require a separate record accounting for the use of these funds.
Patron - Pollard
Bills that increase fees. Requires that any bill that increases a fee of the Commonwealth be introduced no later than the first day of the General Assembly session, and requires that certain information about the history of the fee be presented to the committee of the General Assembly to which the bill is referred. This information includes: (i) when the fee was first established: (ii) the dates and amounts by which the fee has increased over the past 10 years; (iii) the purpose for the revenue from the fee, and whether any amounts of such revenue have been spent for other purposes in the past 10 years; (iv) the total annual amount of revenues raised from the fee each year for the past 10 years; and (v) the estimated amount of revenues that will be generated by the proposed increase and the reason for the increase. The same information also must be presented to any committee before the committee considers any amendment to a bill that would increase fees.
Patron - Lingamfelter
General Assembly; members' salaries. Requires that the salaries of members of the General Assembly be adjusted to equal 40 percent of the average salary of classroom teachers in the Commonwealth, including librarians and guidance counselors, as calculated by the Virginia Department of Education. Any adjustment that would decrease members' salaries would become effective beginning in 2005 upon passage of the appropriation act. Pursuant to the Constitution of Virginia, any adjustment that would increase members' salaries would not become effective until January 9, 2008, following the election of all of the members of the General Assembly. In fiscal year 2003, the average teacher salary in the Commonwealth was $42,778.
Patron - Albo
General Assembly; office expense allowance. Requires members of the General Assembly who receive an allowance for office expenses and supplies provided by the general appropriation act to substantiate their business expenses on a quarterly basis and return any amount in excess of the substantiated expenses. These requirements are necessary to establish the office expense allowance as an "accountable plan" under the Internal Revenue Code Tax Regulations.
Patron - Moran
General Assembly; office allowances. Changes the nonvouchered office expense allowance arrangement for members of the General Assembly to an accountable plan within the meaning of the Internal Revenue Code regulations. Beginning January 11, 2006, members will be required to substantiate their business expenditures on a quarterly basis and return any amount in excess of the substantiated expenses. The bill also provides a separate office equipment allowance not to exceed $2,000 during a two-year period. Members will be required to submit a voucher and accompanying receipts prior to receiving payment for equipment expenses. The Clerk of the House of Delegates and the Clerk of the Senate, under the direction of their respective Rules Committee, are required to establish policies in their houses regarding the transfer of office equipment purchased with the allowance to the Commonwealth when the equipment falls into disuse or the member leaves office. The Clerks must submit by November 1, 2004, the policies and forms needed to implement the bill to their respective Rules Committees for approval.
Patron - Brink
House of Delegates; session coverage. Directs the House Rules Committee to adopt procedures governing live television coverage of the sessions of the House of Delegates beginning with the 2005 Regular Session of the General Assembly.
Patron - Armstrong
House of Delegates; portrait of the former Speaker Quillen. Authorizes the painting of a portrait of Ford C. Quillen, former acting Speaker of the House of Delegates, to be hung in the Chamber of the House of Delegates.
Patron - Kilgore
Joint Commission on Health Care. Removes the Commission's authority to hire a director and staff and provides that staff support for the Commission is to be provided by the Division of Legislative Services.
Patron - Martin
Television or other electronic signals generated by the Senate of Virginia. Prohibits the use of certain video or audio signals generated by the Senate for political or commercial purposes, including campaigns for elective office and bond referenda. Specifically, the bill excludes educational, news, and public affairs programming and authorized unedited video feeds. A person who is convicted for a violation of these restrictions will be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.
Patron - Wampler
Tax bills; prohibiting amendments. Prohibits amendments to any bill introduced during the 2004 Session that increases a tax, imposes a new tax, or extends a tax, if requested by the patron of the bill.
Patron - Cuccinelli
Joint Commission on Reduction of Nonessential State Expenditures. Creates the Joint Commission on Reduction of Nonessential State Expenditures in the legislative branch of state government. The purpose of the Commission is to review the operations of state agencies and state-funded programs with a view toward the reduction of nonessential programs and expenditures. The Commission shall consist of nine members of the House of Delegates appointed by the Speaker thereof, of whom at least five shall be members of the House Appropriations Committee, and five members from the Senate appointed by the Privileges and Elections Committee of the Senate, of whom at least two shall be members of the Finance Committee, and the Auditor of Public Accounts, ex officio, who shall have no vote.
Patron - Athey
General Assembly Conflicts of Interests Act; disclosure of fees and compensation from certain publicly regulated business. Requires a separate disclosure statement to be filed by any legislator receiving fees or compensation in excess of $10,000 in a 12-month period from a publicly regulated business such as a bank, insurance company, or public utility.
Patron - Griffith
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