Wow, it’s already July, which means we are halfway through the year and we have new laws on the books! This newsletter contains a selection of legislation passed by the 2022 Regular Session of the General Assembly that is likely to affect the daily lives of Virginians. Also featured is a recap of June, other updates, and news from across the Commonwealth and the 93rd district.
New Laws on the Books
- HB 450. Parking of vehicles; electric vehicle charging spots; civil penalties. The law prohibits a person from parking a vehicle not capable of receiving an electric charge or not in the process of charging in a space clearly marked as reserved for charging electric vehicles. A violation is subject to a civil penalty of no more than $25.
- HB 632. Exhaust systems; excessive noise. The law makes certain secondary offenses related to loud exhaust systems that are not in good working order primary offenses and exempts local ordinances related to such exhaust systems from the prohibition on law-enforcement officers stopping a vehicle for a violation of a local ordinance unless it is a jail-able offense.
- SB 362. Bicycles and certain other vehicles; riding two abreast. The law prohibits persons riding bicycles, electric personal assistive mobility devices, electric power-assisted bicycles, or motorized skateboards or scooters two abreast from impeding the normal and reasonable movement of traffic and requires such persons to move into a single-file formation as quickly as is practicable when being overtaken from the rear by a faster-moving vehicle.
- SB 777. Front and rear bumper height limits; emergency. The law, which became effective on March 22, 2022, provides that no passenger car or pickup or panel truck shall be operated on a public highway if the suspension, frame, or chassis has been modified by any means so as to cause the height of the front bumper to be four or more inches greater than the height of the rear bumper.
Animal Care & Control
- SB 604. Animal cruelty; companion animals. The law clarifies that animals are not considered companion animals only when actively involved in bona fide medical or scientific experimentation. Current law exempts animals from the definition of companion animals if they are regulated under federal law as research animals.
- HB 1332/SB 700. Covering a security camera in a correctional facility; penalty. The law provides that any person who intentionally covers, removes, damages, renders inoperable, or otherwise obscures a security camera, as defined in the law, without the permission of the sheriff, jail superintendent, warden, or Director of the Department of Corrections or Department of Juvenile Justice is guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.
Firearms & Weapons
- HB 1130/SB 207. Purchase of service handguns or other weapons by retired sworn law enforcement officers. The law removes the requirement that a sworn law-enforcement officer be employed in a full-time capacity at the time of his retirement to purchase his service handgun.
- SB 758. Selling or possessing a switchblade. The law eliminates the prohibition of selling, bartering, giving, furnishing, or possessing with the intent of selling, bartering, giving, or furnishing a switchblade.
- HB 1236. Summons for unlawful detainer; notice; adverse employment actions prohibited. The law requires any summons for unlawful detainer to include a notice to the tenant that it is unlawful for his employer to discharge him from employment or take any adverse personnel action against him for appearing at an initial or subsequent hearing on such summons, provided that he has given reasonable notice of such hearing to his employer.
- HB 1140. Voter registration; cancellation of registration; notice requirement. The law requires general registrars to provide notice of the cancellation of a voter’s registration to the voter by mail to the address listed in the voter’s registration record and by email to the email address provided on the voter’s registration application if one was provided.
- HB 497/SB 124. Misuse of power of attorney; financial exploitation; incapacitated adults; penalty. The law makes it a Class 1 misdemeanor for an agent under a power of attorney to knowingly or intentionally engage in financial exploitation of an incapacitated adult who is the principal of that agent. The law also provides that the agent’s authority terminates upon such conviction. As introduced, this law was a recommendation of the Virginia Criminal Justice Conference.
Find a full list HERE
June Highlights in the Community
Continuing the Fight for Safer Schools in Virginia
Three years ago, Delegate Jeff Bourne, Delegate Van Valkenburg, and I wrote a school safety memo suggesting a series of policy proposals to make our schools and communities safer in the aftermath of Parkland. This article does a thorough job of showing what we’ve accomplished. We added counselors and support staff in schools, passed gun violence prevention laws, provided money for safety infrastructure, and modernized our SRO laws, among other achievements. This past father’s day we wrote another piece to continue this fight to keep our children safe, with new proposals for an assault weapons ban, upping the age to purchase certain weapons, and safe storage. We’ve improved school safety here in the commonwealth, but we have more to do.
In the News:
The Virginian Pilot: Opinion: Continue the fight for safer schools in Virginia
Celebrating the 4th of July on the Peninsula
There is a lot of programming for locals and visitors to attend during the Birthday of our Nation plus a beautiful display of fireworks. The day will start as it has in past years with the Reading of the Declaration of Independence at 9:30am and ends with Fireworks at the Governor’s Palace at 9:30pm!
The City of Newport News Parks, Recreation & Tourism Department will present the “4th of July Stars in the Sky” on Monday, July 4, 2022 at Victory Landing Park (50 25th St.). The event begins at 7:00 p.m. with free children’s inflatables, free face painting, the Tomcats Dixieland Band (performing near the Newport News Victory Arch) and strolling entertainment. Food vendors will be on site selling a variety of items and live music will be provided by the USAF Heritage of America Concert Band from 7:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. A spectacular fireworks show by the internationally award winning fireworks company Pyrotecnico, will light up the sky over the James River at 9:00 p.m.
The public is invited to celebrate Yorktown’s 43rd Independence Day Celebration on Monday, July 4. This free family-friendly event includes activities on Historic Main Street and also at the waterfront at Riverwalk Landing. Lots of free family-friendly celebrations featuring a full lineup of events leading up to the big fireworks finale!
As always, thank you for reading! Keep connected with our office by calling (757) 525-9526, emailing DelMMullin@house.virginia.gov, or @mikemullin4va on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. If my office can ever be of assistance to you, please do not hesitate to contact us!