Senator Bill Stanley

Serving The 20th Senatorial District of Virginia

News Update - January 20, 2011

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Things began to settle down during my second week in Richmond. I have learned how to navigate around Capitol Square, the General Assembly Building, the committee meeting rooms, and how to juggle the days filled with bill drafting, committee meetings, session, special interest groups, lobbyists and constituents.

Although Lee-Jackson Day and Martin Luther King’s Birthday are both state holidays in Virginia, the General Assembly does not take holidays off. So while Virginia’s school children, state workers, federal employees and many employed in the private sector may have had a long weekend, legislators had a normal workweek, holding sessions on both holidays.

Martin Luther King’s Birthday has become one of the busiest days of every General Assembly session. With many Virginians being off from work, and with more spaces available in the parking garages in downtown Richmond because of the holiday, dozens of groups have chosen Martin Luther King’s Birthday as the ideal day to come to the Capitol and meet with their legislators.

This year was no different, as the General Assembly on Monday was filled with people from across the Commonwealth who wanted to meet their elected officials to express their views on the issues under consideration this session. As a result, the six passenger elevators in the General Assembly Building were frequently filled to capacity, and the wait to obtain one pretty lengthy.

Thanks in part to the federal holiday, we had a lot of visitors this week, to include members from Tea Parties across the state, who celebrated their lobby day on Monday. Also visiting from the district this week were Melvin Adams of Hardy, President of Renewanation, William Jacobsen, CEO, Carilion Franklin Memorial Hospital, Daphne Jamison, VP, Virginia Assn. of Soil & Water Conservation Districts, Dr. Carlyle Ramsey, President, Danville Community College, Shannon Hair, Director of Development of Danville Community College. Other Danville and Pittsylvania County visitors included Jim Bebeau, Frank VanValkenburg, Billy Talbott, Sylvesta Jennings, Mary Lee White, Dean Jennings, and Drs. Gary Miller and Pradeep Pradhan. Franklin County visitors included Rodney Jordan, Jon Morris and Elmer Hardy.

On Tuesday, the Senate Republican Caucus unveiled its legislative agenda for 2011. Our agenda includes measures to increase transparency and strengthen accountability in Virginia’s budget process, to oppose tax increases, to protect Virginia’s status as a Right-to-Work state and to prevent the implementation of Card Check.

Our agenda includes the Repeal Amendment, which would strengthen federalism by placing a new safeguard against overreaching by the federal government. Republican Senators are also supporting Governor McDonnell in his effort to reduce the number of state boards and commissions. Measures that would enforce immigration laws by requiring state contractors to use E-Verify, and legislation to prevent taxpayer funding for abortions were also part of the agenda.

The Caucus agenda also included my Senate Bill 1378 which provides that unborn children at every stage of development enjoy all the rights, privileges, and immunities available to other persons, citizens, and residents of the Commonwealth, subject only to the laws and constitutions of Virginia and the United States and precedents of the appellate courts of Virginia and of the United States.

While the final count isn’t in yet, it’s safe to say that the General Assembly will be considering somewhere around 2,000 pieces of legislation during this year’s session. I have submitted several pieces of legislation this year. In addition to SB1378 mentioned above, I have introduced a bill which provides a significant tax credit for companies that relocate their business to our area and utilize our older industrial buildings to operate their business. The tax credit will off-set their costs expended for retro-fitting and modernizing these buildings for use. I believe that this incentive will bring new companies and jobs to our area. I am proud to have Delegate Danny Marshall, Delegate Don Merricks and Delegate Charles Poindexter as co-patrons for this very important bill.

In next week’s column, I’ll have more information on just how many bills have been submitted this session, the substance of the other bills that I have introduced, and more details on the progress of my own bills. Until then, if you hear about an issue that concerns you, please drop me an email at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , send me a letter at Senate of Virginia, PO Box 396, Richmond VA 23218-0396, or call us at 804.698.7519. My legislative assistants are Brenda Bowman and Brian O’Connor and we are located in Room 313. I also encourage you to visit us during session.

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Senator Bill Stanley

Senator Bill Stanley

Website: senatorbillstanley.com E-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
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About Senator Stanley

As the son of a naval aviator my family traveled throughout the United States wherever duty called. In 1983 my family purchased a house in Franklin County. My father chose to move here not only for the beauty of the land but most of all the values and character of its people. I graduated from Hampden Sydney College and the D.C. School of Law, and began my law practice in Northern Virginia with former Attorney General Candidate Gil Davis.

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