The weeks after our historic snowstorm have been busy at the 2016 General Assembly session! As promised, I have been very busy making sure that the voices of my constituents are heard every day.
Last Wednesday, South County’s own Rev. Andy Casper from South County Church said the opening prayer before Session. It was great to see him down in Richmond.
I would like to commend Virginia Tech this week for their major increase of spots for in-state undergraduate students. The number of spots shot upwards from 15,197 in 2004 to 18,126 in 2015. I always love seeing our state-schools increasing accessibility to college for our students in the Commonwealth.
Delegate Albo’s 2016 Legislation Updates
Since it is still early in the Session, many of my bills are assigned to subcommittees but have not yet been debated. However, HB 271 Parenting Time was continued to 2017 in the Civil Law subcommittee. In the meantime, the Bar will review the bill and send it back to me with recommendations.
HB 169: HOT lanes enforcement and notification by a HOT lanes operator and the Department of Transportation. Requires a HOT lanes operator to notify the registered owner of a vehicle that entered or used HOT lanes without payment of the toll. Such notification must be given within 24 hours of the violation if the registered owner of the vehicle has an account with the HOT lanes operator or within 24 hours of identification of a registered owner who does not have such an account. The bill requires the Department of Transportation to notify an account holder when his account reaches a low balance status, if the account holder has requested such notification.
With this bill, it would be possible for account holders to sign up for notifications for when the amount of money in their account is low. This would prevent users from using the HOT lanes without the correct toll amount in the future. If you did happen to use the HOT lanes without paying the toll, this bill would also make sure that you are notified within 24 hours.
HB 169 is in the process of being incorporated into HB 1069 Patron Jones. After incorporation, the bill will move on as part of HB 1069.
HB 225: Tolls for use of Interstate System components. Requires approval of the General Assembly prior to the imposition and collection of tolls for the use of Interstate 395. The bill contains a technical amendment. The bill contains an emergency clause.
Governor McAuliffe announced plans to turn the HOV lanes from D.C. to Edsall Road from HOV during rush hour to HOT lanes at all times. This means that my constituents who drive alone (non-HOV) to D.C. prior to 6:00 A.M. and from D.C. to Springfield after 6:00 P.M will have to pay a toll. I am a fan of HOT lanes for new lanes.
On the Beltway all the HOT lanes are new lanes, thus if you don’t want to pay to ride the new lanes you can just drive on the lanes that have always been available to you. However, with the Governor’s 395 proposal, you will no longer be able to drive as a single driver northbound prior to 6:00 A.M. or southbound after 6:00 P.M without paying a toll. I opposed this plan and filed HB 225.
I am sorry to report that the bill was killed in subcommittee by a vote of 5-2. The Chambers of Commerce (both NOVA and Mount Vernon), the NOVA Transportation Alliance, VDOT, and a whole host of others opposed to my bill.
If you would like to watch a video of me discussing my bills, watch my interview with VCTA here:
Once again, I encourage you to keep in touch with me and my office during this Session. The feedback you provide helps me do a better job representing you. You can email me at DelDAlbo@house.virginia.gov or call me at (804)-698-1042. You can also join the conversation on our Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DaveAlboVA.