The Virginia General Assembly is Upon Us

And no one is safe. Session starts on the 13th of January.

Believe it or not, politics affect the Charlottesville regional real estate market. From the Dillon Rule to Transfer of Development Rights legislation, to whether people can use cell/smart phones while driving.

The General Assembly is nearly upon us – and this is my public service announcement to educate yourselves. While much of, if not most, negotiating seems to be done behind closed doors and in hallways, occasionally the citizens can impact legislation 🙂 That’s where we/you come in.

We have access to a phenomenal resource for getting educated about the Virginia General Assembly session.

Richmond Sunlight

Here’s my process for getting educated and informed:

  • Look at the newest bills every day or three.
  • Search for topics that interest me (and tag them as I go – it’s helpful for everyone).
  • Stay focused on real estate and real estate related topics; there are so many pieces of legislation that it’s easy to get distracted.
  • Write about potentially impactful bills, contact legislators and get involved in whatever way I can.
  • Keep an eye on Charlottesville-Albemarle area legislators – David Toscano, Rob Bell, Steve Landes, Creigh Deeds, Emmet Hanger,   

My recommendation is this – go to Richmond Sunlight, sign up for an account (it’s free) and start educating yourself. Then start expressing yourself using your knowledge and informed opinions.

real estate

real property

albemarle

charlottesville

Eminent Domain

Dillon Rule

More at Fredericksburg’s Free Lance Star. via VHA.

A few bills of interest:

Fair Housing Law; removes exemption of private individuals who sell or rent by owner, etc. (HB103) – Apparently this exemption originated for those who were renting out basement apartments, etc.

These legislators really want to control whether we use our phones/communication devices while driving:

Wireless telecommunications devices; prohibits talking on such device unless in hands-free mode. (SB10)
Handheld personal communications device; prohibits use while operating motor vehicle, etc., penalty. (HB22)
Wireless telecommunications devices; prohibits talking on such device unless in hands-free mode. (HB58)
Use of handheld personal communications devices in motor vehicles; penalty. (HB212)

Let’s see if our legislators try to put forth dumba*s legislation this year, like they did last year – Real Estate Brokers Can stop Learning after 15 years. – The bill thankfully failed as it was left in committee.

I really would like to see a breakdown of how much “commendations” cost the taxpayer.

Is this really necessary? – HB124: Alcoholic beverages; penalty for possession of open container in a motor vehicle.
This seems like a good idea – Smoking in cars with minor present; civil penalty.

I’m curious – what are the dumbest bills you can find?


Here’s a tag cloud of the legislation introduced as of Saturday, 9 January:

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2 Comments

  1. Jim Duncan January 11, 2010 at 11:19

    You are quite welcome.

    I hope more people get involved. Leaving legislatin’ to the Legislators and lobbyists is a dangerous thing. 🙂

    Reply

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