Henrico County VA
General Assembly

Bagby establishes district office


Newly elected 74th District Virginia Delegate Lamont Bagby has established his district office, through which constituents may contact him. Bagby's district encompasses portions of northern and eastern Henrico County, all of Charles City County and two precincts in Richmond. Bagby won a special election earlier this month, easily defeating independent David Lambert, to serve the remainder of former Delegate Joe Morrissey's term, which runs through this year. Bagby and Lambert will face off again in the general election in November for the right to serve a two-year term beginning in January.

House GOP debates Medicaid expansion rejection methodology

House Republicans are echoing national GOP rhetoric in rejecting the Medicaid expansion, strongly backed by Democratic Gov. Terry McAuliffe.

Delegate James “Jimmie” Massie, R-Richmond, said Obamacare could likely “implode.” Massie said he handles the “business side” of Medicaid reform.

Bill seeks adjacent graves for pets, owners

Virginia codes currently prohibit animals and humans from being buried together in the same cemetery, but one delegate hopes to change that with House Bill 588.

Delegate Israel O’Quinn, R-Bristol, proposed HB588 and if passed it would allow pets and owners to be buried together under certain circumstances. Inspired by a retired police officer wanting to be buried alongside his dogs, the bill is already gaining support from pet lovers and cemetery owners.

Climate change activists march on Virginia Capitol

More than 70 activists descended on the Virginia Capitol this past week, calling on Gov. Terry McAuliffe to take a more aggressive stance against climate change.

The event was organized in conjunction with Virginia Conservation Network Lobby Day by Appalachian Voice Environment Virginia, the Sierra Club-Virginia Chapter and the Virginia Conservation Network.

Carrying miniature windmills and large posters, the activists began their march on Seventh and E. Grace streets in downtown Richmond.

GOP aims to uphold gay marriage ban

Virginia’s House of Delegates is poised to vote this week on a bill allowing legislators to defend any law the governor and attorney general decide not to uphold on behalf of the state.

House Bill 706, proposed by Delegate C. Todd Gilbert, R- Shenandoah, would permit a member of the General Assembly to represent the “interests of the commonwealth” in circumstances where the constitutionality, legality or application of Virginia’s adopted laws are questioned by the governor or attorney general.

Local officials show support for year-round school option

Sen. Donald McEachin, joined by Henrico school and government leaders, announced his commitment Jan. 30 to funding grants for Virginia localities considering year-round schooling.

“Year-round calendars are an excellent option to help struggling schools and students,” McEachin, a Democrat, said at a press conference organized by the Virginia First Cities Coalition, an advocacy group for 13 municipalities in the commonwealth, including Richmond.

McEachin was joined by Varina District Supervisor Tyrone Nelson, Fairfield District School Board member Lamont Bagby and Henrico Superintendent Patrick Kinlaw.

Grant would fund active-shooter training

A bill is advancing through the House that would grant “active shooter” training funds to smaller police forces, which currently have no budget to accommodate the over-time pay to prepare for mass shootings.

Delegate Mike Webert, R-Marshall, said the Fauquier County Sheriff Department recently integrated an active shooter program. To do so, he said the department brought in experts from Fairfax, which has a larger police force.

Bills seek to protect responders from reckless driving

“Andrew’s Law,” legislation that would punish as a felony reckless driving that seriously injures or kills an on-duty responder or highway worker, will be heard in the Senate Finance Committee next week.

The legislation, a combination of House Bill 1148 and Senate Bill 293, was introduced after Virginia state trooper Andrew Fox, 27, was run over and killed while directing traffic at the Virginia State Fair in 2012.

Va. Senate committee says ‘no’ to dreamers

Virginia Senate legislation designed to give in-state tuition to undocumented childhood arrivals was defeated this past week by a Health and Education Committee vote of 7-6.

Senate Bill 249, patroned by Sen. Donald McEachin, D-Richmond, and known as the Virginia DREAM Act, sparked heated rhetoric on whether state or federal legislators should be held responsible for immigration-related measures.

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