By Delegate Rob Bloxom
Hi! This is Rob Bloxom with this week’s Capitol Report from Richmond.
We sprinted into the second week of the 2023 session with the final number of legislative proposals to the House of Delegates topping 1000 pieces. These bills will be given to the Speaker of the House who will determine where the bill goes. This process is called referring.
Once the bills are referred to a committee, typically separated by topic, the chairman of that committee will determine which sub-committee is the expert on that topic.
My committee assignments remain the same as last year.
I serve on 15 different committees. The four full committees I serve on are
Appropriations Committee, Transportation Committee, Privileges and Elections Committee, and Agriculture Chesapeake and Natural Resources.
Under the full committees I serve, there are 11 sub-committees.
I am also Chairman of two of these sub-committees – The Chesapeake and the Capital Outlay sub-committees. My workload is supposedly the heaviest of any legislator in Richmond. I have no idea if this is true but I enjoy the busy days. This year, unlike previous years, I find myself hitting the fifteen bill limit. Four bills originated from the Governor and his staff. Others came from industries around the state.
What always fascinates me is that the statement “This is a simple bill” almost always turns out to be a very difficult bill and has more changes than one would envision at first glance.
The first bill I have that falls into this category is a Motorcycle Riders Course Bill. (HB2304) Supposedly, it just updates the Code Section to eliminate the sidecar training course and to modify the bill to include a course for three-wheeled motorcycles. However, as it was written, all safety courses can be taken without any safety requirements such as no helmet, no shoes, etc. Needless to say, this will either be fixed, or I will kill the bill myself.
Another bill I am carrying this year is HB1806 concerning Farm Tag/License Plates for Farm Use Vehicles. This bill is a “fix” for the farm bill that passed last year with no real opposition. However, with DMV’s implementation of this bill, numerous problems arose. The rendition of this bill hopes to fix the problems. Here again if a fix is not found, I will propose a bill to revert to the historic way of homemade farm tags.
I will continue to keep you updated as bills move through the legislative process in Richmond. I am happy to meet with those of you who are coming from the Eastern Shore and Hampton Roads and to listen to your specific concerns and interests. I encourage you to take a look at the bills that are being considered during the next few weeks. You may follow these bills at https://lis.virginia.gov and during the live stream committee and floor sessions.
As always, please feel free to contact me or my staff with any questions or concerns you may have by calling my district office at (757)824-3456 or during session at the Richmond office (804)698-1000 or by emailing me at [email protected]