eNews February 18, 2022Friday, February 18, 2022 - 04:42pm
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In this issue:
- Tell VML about your favorite outdoor recreation location in Virginia…and get published!
- It’s not too late! 7th graders have until March 11 to enter the 2022 “If I Were Mayor” essay contest
- A message from Virginia Senator Mark Warner: Infrastructure bill grants and resources now available
- ICMA Leadership Academy scholarships still available
Sunday is Budget Day!
Sunday, Feb. 20, is scheduled as the day that the House and Senate budget-writing committees present their proposed amendments to the budgets proposed in mid-December by former Governor Ralph Northam.
We say “scheduled as the day” because last year’s General Assembly threw us all curve ball by delaying the release of the budgets until later in the week. So, while it’s not expected to happen this year, you cannot rule out the possibility of a delay.
The budgets are HB/SB 29 (the current fiscal year budget); and HB/SB 30 (the proposed budget for the 2022-2024 biennium).
How to watch
There are several differences between this week’s Budget Sunday and last week’s Super Bowl Sunday. These differences include the lack of commercials, cheerleaders, and halftime show. However, just like the Super Bowl, you can watch Budget Sunday as it happens!
Budget events are scheduled to begin at 1 p.m. on Sunday when the House Appropriations Committee (HAC) presents its amendments, to be followed by the Senate Finance and Appropriations Committee that will meet at 4 p.m.
- The House Appropriations meeting agenda and meeting link will be listed on the HAC website here >.
- The Senate Finance & Appropriations meeting agenda and meeting link will be listed on the SFAC website here >.
What to expect
The two committees use a similar format for their Sunday meetings. Each will present their recommendations by subcommittee. The subcommittee reports contain a brief analysis of the issues the panels faced along with a spreadsheet and (sometimes) the budget amendments often referred to as “half-sheets.”
Each subcommittee report is posted to the Committee’s website concurrent with its presentation.
It’s important to note that the subcommittee reports, including any amendments unveiled on Sunday, are not the final word for each committee. Any amendment could be modified or dropped, or new amendments not included in Sunday’s subcommittee reports could emerge when the full details of all amendments are posted. If the two committees follow long-established precedent, then the official half-sheets will not be released until Tuesday. The official budget amendments will be available online.
On Thursday, the House and Senate will debate, vote, and ratify their amendment packages.
After each chamber approves their budget amendment package – and rejects the package proposed by the other chamber – the senior members of the money committees hold a budget conference to reconcile the spending and policy differences. The conference report typically comes together close to the end of the Session (adjournment is scheduled for March 12); both chambers must approve the conference report.
The bottom line
We have a long way to go before state budget development concludes. Stay vigilant! Your help will be needed (and much appreciated).
Grocery tax update
With differing approaches, the House of Delegates and the Senate have proposed sending replacement funds back to localities to supplant the revenue the General Assembly would be removing. Will localities be held truly harmless by this General Assembly action? The devil will be in the details of how the General Assembly proposes to replace the revenue.
Below are examples of the growing budget needs that exist across every Virginia locality, compared to sales taxes as source of local revenues. For localities large and small, a faulty revenue replacement scheme by the General Assembly could mean cuts to public services like law enforcement and public education or increases to local property taxes to account for the funding loss from the state.
The method the General Assembly chooses to replace local revenue must be dependable, particularly for smaller localities, if local budgets will truly be held harmless.
VML will continue to encourage the General Assembly and Governor to protect local government funding from cuts caused by eliminating sales taxes on groceries.
|City of Winchester (2021)|
|One Percent Local S/U Revenue||10,834,790|
|Fire & Rescue Budget||8,410,675|
|Total Education Budget||64,901,684|
|State K12 Categorical Aid||29,659,511|
|One Percent State S/U K12 Revenue||4,935,233|
|City of Lynchburg (2021)|
|One Percent Local S/U Revenue||18,586,355|
|Fire & Rescue Budget||19,245,531|
|Total Education Budget||115,589,465|
|State K12 Categorical Aid||59,287,451|
|One Percent State S/U K12 Revenue||12,081,495|
|Albermarle County (2021)|
|One Percent Local S/U Revenue||19,806,666|
|Fire & Rescue Budget||26,032,697|
|Total Education Budget||206,643,338|
|State K12 Categorical Aid||60,382,670|
|One Percent State S/U K12 Revenue||17,747,379|
|Henrico County (2021)|
|One Percent Local S/U Revenue||75,612,539|
|Fire & Rescue Budget||78,329,798|
|Total Education Budget||585,618,013|
|State K12 Categorical Aid||315,850,591|
|One Percent State S/U K12 Revenue||60,554,370|
|Richmond County (2021)|
|One Percent Local S/U Revenue||1,694,045|
|Fire & Rescue Budget||1,161,957|
|Total Education Budget||15,984,956|
|State K12 Categorical Aid||9,848,999|
|One Percent State S/U K12 Revenue||1,305,824|
|City of Virginia Beach (2021)|
|One Percent Local S/U Revenue||78,732,948|
|Fire & Rescue Budget||82,995,916|
|Total Education Budget||858,486,049|
|State K12 Categorical Aid||396,103,494|
|One Percent State S/U K12 Revenue||79,847,943|
|Loudoun County (2021)|
|One Percent Local S/U Revenue||90,053,162|
|Fire & Rescue Budget||115,356,208|
|Total Education Budget||1,416,774,492|
|State K12 Categorical Aid||411,976,584|
|One Percent State S/U K12 Revenue||94,077,514|
VML Contact: Carter Hutchinson, email@example.com
Bill to require study of local jail fees amended and reported
As amended, the bill directs the State Board of Local and Regional Jails to convene a workgroup to review and make recommendations regarding the reduction or elimination of costs and fees charged to inmates in local or regional correctional facilities to defray the costs of an inmate’s keep, work release, or participation in educational or rehabilitative programs; to use telephone services; to purchase items or services from stores or commissaries; to use electronic visitation systems; and any other items deemed relevant by the Board. The workgroup would include all relevant stakeholders on the issue and report its findings and recommendations to the Chairmen of the House Committee on Public Safety and the Senate Committee on Rehabilitation and Social Services by Oct. 1, 2022.
As introduced, the bill would have eliminated certain fees imposed by local and regional jails. As approved by the House, it would allow the legislative members of the workgroup to appoint the non-legislative members of that workgroup. VML prefers the workgroup approach and prefers the language of the Senate substitute regarding the workgroup members because it opens the workgroup membership up to more potential participants.
Meanwhile, Morrissey’s SB581 was approved by the Senate and awaits assignment to a House committee.
VML Contact: Janet Areson, firstname.lastname@example.org
Local Government Legislation
Bill that would prevent weapon bans in government buildings to be heard in Senate committee
HB827 (Wilt), which removes local government authority to ban weapons in government buildings, is to be heard in the Senate Judiciary Committee. It currently has the same language as SB74 (Chase) which was rejected by the same committee earlier in the session. There will be a substitute. VML opposes the bill as written.
The bill has three parts: 1. Requires any gun-buy back effort to offer the guns to dealers so the same guns will go back into circulation; 2. Removes current authority of local governments to ban weapons in their government buildings; and 3. Blocks localities from suing gun manufacturers for harm caused by the guns they manufactured.
VML Contact: Mark Flynn, email@example.com
For our 2022 “Virginia You Love” magazine issue this summer we want our readers to tell us their perfect place to have fun outside. It could be a favorite hiking trail or the stadium bleachers of the hometown ball team. Perhaps you can be found in a mountain lake with family or at the dog park with your furry friend. Maybe you like the challenges of long fairways and fast greens or the peace and quiet of a bench under a shady tree. Vita courses, ropes courses, pump tracks, brewery decks…Wherever, whatever, we want to hear about it!
Have your place featured in our magazine!
If you tell us about your favorite place for outdoor fun, we will put it on the list of possible places to feature in the July/August issue of Virginia Town & City. You can nominate any place you like…just so long as it’s outdoors and in Virginia.
It’s super easy to participate
Learn more and complete the short online survey here >.
VML Contact: Manuel Timbreza, firstname.lastname@example.org
It’s not too late! 7th graders have until March 11 to enter the 2022 “If I Were Mayor” essay contest
The Virginia Municipal League (VML) invites all eligible Virginia 7th Graders to join its “If I were Mayor” essay contest.
Regional winners selected from around the state will each receive a $150 gift card and a plaque. One statewide winner chosen from the regional winners will receive a $250 gift card and a plaque. The runner-up from the region that receives the statewide award will become that region’s winner.
Winning essays will be featured in the May issue of VML’s magazine Virginia Town & City.
VML Contact: Rob Bullington, email@example.com
Resources & Opportunities
You may have heard about our bipartisan infrastructure bill – it’s a once-in-a-generation investment in roads, bridges, broadband, airports, electric vehicle charging stations and more. It’s going to be transformative for Virginia, and I’m proud to have brokered the compromise that got it done.
The coming months and years are going to be critical as we make sure that Virginia is poised to collect every dollar available to us. While the majority of all infrastructure funding will be delivered automatically to states and localities, the bill also approves dozens of competitive grant programs for important infrastructure projects to receive additional assistance.
If you’re interested in receiving more communication about these opportunities from my office, sign up for updates here by checking “Infrastructure Funding” under subscription options.
In short, all of this means that Virginia’s localities and stakeholders will soon have the opportunity to apply and compete for millions of dollars in federal infrastructure dollars.
That’s why I’m reaching out to you to let you know that I’ve compiled a page with resources and grant opportunities, which you can find here. It includes a detailed due date calendar and plenty of grant information so that you can see all the options available to you.
Among other things, the site:
- Visualizes application due dates with an interactive calendar, allowing users to better track deadlines.
- Filters grants by federal agency, allowing users to better locate grants that fit their needs.
- Enables users to easily request a letter from the Senator in support of a grant application.
- Provides a snapshot look at the funding that is already making its way to Virginia, and allows users to view in detail how that funding will be distributed and utilized throughout the Commonwealth.
There are quite literally millions of dollars that Virginia is eligible for – money for things like roads, broadband, and local projects of all types – and I want to make sure we’re getting our fair share. Take a minute to look through this page and see if there are grants you might be eligible for – these have the potential to be transformative for Virginia.
I’m looking forward to seeing Virginia benefit from these investments over the next decade. My office stands ready to help ensure that Virginia can take full advantage of this historic investment.
Contact: Zack Golden, State Director – U.S. Senator Mark R. Warner, Zack_Golden@warner.senate.gov
ICMA Leadership Academy scholarships still available
Join the nearly 600 cities around the country already benefiting from the effectiveness of the ICMA Leadership Academy the 12-week, online leadership program developed by the late General Colin Powell.
Enroll in 2022!
Our April Cohort is right around the corner. Join us in investing in the city workforce – empowering them to become better leaders today and into the future.
We would also like to acknowledge and congratulate the Virginia cities who have graduates from our programs:
- Colonial Beach
- Round Hill
- Virginia Beach
About the ICMA Leadership Academy
Developed by the late General Colin Powell, the Professional Development Academy and ICMA, the High-Performance Leadership Academy is an online 12-week program that helps your workforce develop fundamental, practical leadership skills to deliver results for counties and our residents.
ICMA Leadership Academy Contact: Grant More, firstname.lastname@example.org