By Delegate Rob Bloxom
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This is Delegate Rob Bloxom reporting from Richmond with this week’s Capitol Report.
As many of you know, this year one of my bills would have given driving permits to undocumented residents. The bill was the product of a DMV study group that hoped to address the safety issue of people driving on our roads without licenses. I have sponsored this legislation for the past four years, and in each of them, it has failed to gain the necessary votes because it was viewed as too progressive. This year the same bill died a similar death, but for the opposite reason: it was viewed by the current House as being too conservative. This one example illustrates how drastically the pendulum has swung.
The cultural divide in our state is more evident than in previous years. Much of the proposed legislation sponsored by delegates from more populous regions is likely to have unintended consequences for the state’s rural counties. For example, legislation to protect tree canopy in urban areas may infringe upon the rights of property owners in more rural areas. Similarly, gun legislation designed to curb inner-city violence may prohibit anyone 18 and under from hunting without adult supervision. For any of you who find this difficult to read, you may be pleased to hear that the House also passed a bill this week that permits public profanity.
The administration, with its majority in the legislature, is seeking to expand government control of almost every facet of life in the Commonwealth (except abortion). With this increased government control will inevitably come higher taxes. As a member of the minority party, there is little I can do to stop the new bills. It is my hope that the Senate, when faced with the bills coming from the House, will bring some sanity to the legislative process.
I am always happy to meet with the many constituents coming from the Eastern Shore and my Norfolk district, listening to their specific interests. I am always monitoring my emails and encourage you to contact me with your questions or concerns. I can be reached at 804-698-1100 or by email at DelRBloxom@house.virginia.gov.