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SWVA delegation focuses on region
as new laws take effect July 1

Dear Friend, 

New Virginia laws take effect today, July 1. In addition to passing the second largest tax cut in history and enacting a balanced budget, we worked on significant legislation that will impact the lives of everyday Virginians in other ways. 

Below is a sample of some of the new laws taking effect, including some important bills sponsored by our Southwest Virginia delegation. You can read more here

Just as important, we were able to stop some very bad bills from becoming law, which would have had a negative impact on us in Southwest Virginia. I’ll share some of those highlights tomorrow. 

Thank you for the opportunity to serve you here at home and in Richmond. 

Sincerely,
HB 1839  Industrial hemp; federal Farm Bill; emergency.
                    
Farmers may now grow industrial hemp, and manufacture hemp products, including oils, provided they contain no more than 0.3 percent THC, the psychoactive chemical in marijuana. This bill opens the door for Virginia’s nascent industrial hemp industry, conforming state law to the 2018 Farm Bill passed by Congress. 

HB 2170 False caller identification information; penalty. 

This bill makes “spoofing” caller ID information, a favorite trick of spam callers, a Class 3 misdemeanor, with an escalation to Class 2 on the second offense.
            
HB 2609 Department of Criminal Justice Services; school resource officers

This law establishes that school resource officers hired after July 2020 to go through school-specific training, and requires that each school have at least one administrator who has gone through school safety training provided by the Virginia Center for School and Campus Safety.  
            
SB 1179  Application for a resident concealed handgun permit; United States Armed Forces

Clarifies that members of the Armed Forces whose primary residence is Virginia, but are stationed elsewhere, are eligible to apply for a Virginia resident concealed handgun permit.

HB 1853 Virginia Property Owners' Association Act; home-based businesses

Clarifies that home-based child care is an allowed use for homes under zoning laws, unless specifically restricted by the declaration or a home-owners association’s bylaws.

HB 2173 Public institutions of higher education; tuition and fee increases; public
comment. 

Requires public hearings by Boards of Visitors before increasing mandator fees or tuition. Requires that Boards of Visitors of public colleges and universities must hold at least one public meeting prior to increasing tuition and/or fees.

HB 1883 Motor vehicle insurance policies; foster parents and foster children. 

Car insurance providers are prohibited from denying coverage simply because an application or policyholder is a foster parent.

HB 2538  Balance billing; elective services. 

This bill aims to end surprise “balance billing” by hospitals by informing consumers of what providers at the facility are covered by what insurance plans -- and give them notice that they could be liable for “out of network” expenses if they don’t consult with their carrier to determine what is covered and what isn’t.

HB 2558 (Pillion) Treatment involving opioids; cash clinics 

This bill targets cash clinics and gives Virginia another tool to combat the opioid epidemic by prohibiting health care providers from requesting or requiring a patient to pay cash for an opioid prescription or for the treatment of opioid addiction.

HB 2747 (Kilgore) Southwest Virginia Energy Research and Development Authority

Creates the Southwest Virginia Energy Research and Development Authority to promote opportunities for energy development in Southwest Virginia, to create jobs and economic activity in Southwest Virginia and to position Southwest Virginia and the Commonwealth as a leader in energy workforce and energy technology research and development.

HB 2691 (O’Quinn) Electric utilities; provision of broadband services to unserved areas

Allows electric utilities to establish pilot programs to provide or make available broadband capacity in areas of the Commonwealth that are unserved by broadband.

SB 1495 (Chafin) Virginia Rural Information Technology Apprenticeship Grant Fund and Program;

Establishes the Virginia Rural Information Technology Apprenticeship Grant Fund and Program, to be administered by the Southwest Virginia Higher Education Center, for the purpose of awarding grants to small, rural information technology businesses in certain localities in the Southwest and Southside regions of Virginia to establish 18-month apprenticeship programs for full-time employees that combine mentorship and on-the-job training to enhance the experience and skills of such employees.

SB 1519 (Carrico) University of Virginia's College at Wise; reduced rate tuition

Permits the board of visitors of the University of Virginia to charge reduced rate tuition to any student enrolled at the University of Virginia's College at Wise who resides in the Appalachian Region as defined in relevant federal law,
Todd Pillion is the Republican nominee for State Senate in the 40th District.

He currently represents the 4th District in the Virginia House of Delegates. 
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