DECEMBER IS HERE, and so is the more intense work of Session preparation. Prefiling opened on November 15th, and so the slower trickle of early bill submissions is now available for public view. We’ve discussed in previous newsletters some of the unique opportunities and challenges coming up for the 2022 General Assembly; additional rumors abound around Capitol Square, but the real intel is, “believe it when (you) see it.” Excellent advice…particularly in a budget year.

The incoming Administration is slowly taking shape, though not without some delays in a few key areas. The Governor-elect and his inner circle are keeping appointments and personnel hires exceptionally quiet – but have assembled additional teams of advisors, as part of the transition. Inauguration Day on January 15th is quickly approaching, so we expect (and hope for) more concrete staffing decisions to be announced soon.

We leave you with this spoiler-free piece of pop culture (and shout-out to one Virginia’s own institutions): Why is there a University of Virginia diploma in ‘Ghostbusters’?

Davis Consultants

  • Dec. 3 | 2021 Virginia Education Summit
  • Dec. 6 | Final Night of Hannukah
  • Dec. 7 | Joint Commission on Health Care Meeting 
  • Dec. 13 | Joint Legislative Audit & Review Commission Meeting
  • Dec. 16 | Governor’s Budget Presentation to the Joint Money Committees
  • Dec. 22-24 | DCI closed beginning Wednesday at noon. MERRY CHRISTMAS!
  • Dec. 26 | First Day of Kwanzaa
  • Dec. 31 | Prefile Legislative Draft Return Deadline

Virginia health officials race to shift their sequencing strategy as omicron cases emerge

For months, whenever a lab in Virginia sequences a sample of the virus that causes COVID-19, it’s almost unfailingly been linked to the delta variant. 


Sewage system samples could aid in preventing another pandemic wave in Virginia

Before another potential COVID-19 wave strikes the commonwealth this winter, the Virginia Department of Health may be able to hoist warnings from a less-than-traditional detection method: wastewater.


12-Year-Old Legislation Has Cost Schools Millions

For the past 12 years, school divisions across Virginia have been handicapped by legislation that was passed during the recession to help curb state spending. 


Northam says he won’t rush pardons as term winds down

Cynthia Scott started serving a prison sentence on a robbery conviction at age 31. She’s now 52. Her release date won’t come until she’s 70. She doubts she’ll make it.


Virginia air board adopts clean car regulations

The Virginia State Air Pollution Control Board approved regulations Thursday that set up the framework for reducing greenhouse gas emissions from vehicles as part of a California program the General Assembly embraced during its winter 2021 session. 


Virginia to receive more than $8 billion in funding from bipartisan infrastructure act

PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — On Thursday, Virginia Senators Mark Warner and Tim Kaine announced that the Commonwealth’s transit and highway systems are set to receive more than $8 billion in federal funds over the next five years.


Virginia delegation seeks support from Biden for federal Hurley flood aid

Members of Virginia’s congressional delegation on Thursday asked for President Joe Biden’s support as the state appeals a federal decision denying financial help to Buchanan County residents whose homes were damaged or destroyed by flooding and mudslides in August.


Virginia House recount underway; could affirm GOP majority

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (AP) — Election officials were painstakingly recounting votes late into the night Thursday in one of two unresolved races in Virginia that will settle whether Republicans have reclaimed the majority in the state’s House of Delegates and completed a party sweep of last month’s contests.


Southwest Virginia lawmakers give preview of focuses for 2022 session

In a little more than a month, state lawmakers will head to Richmond for the 2022 General Assembly. As of Monday, folks are able to begin to get a sense of what the focus of next year’s session may be, because lawmakers have to pre-file bills initially by the end of the day Monday.


Democratic senators talking about tax cut plans of their own

As Gov.-elect Glenn Youngkin works with Republican legislators on a wide-ranging plan to cut taxes, two Democratic senators are talking about their own ideas to bring income tax relief to Virginians.


This worker got jobless benefits; Virginia wants them back

ABINGDON, Va. (AP) — For 26 years, Ernest Ray worked at a company in southwest Virginia that made compressors, in a physically demanding job that involved night shifts on a factory floor. When the plant closed in 2018, Ray applied for and received about $9,000 in unemployment benefits.


Cultivating the next generation of farmers

Terry has been farming this way since he moved to Roanoke from Colorado in 2017, driving his pickup truck from plot to plot to plot every day. But it was never his long-term plan. And now, with help from a national farming initiative, he’s close to scaling up to a full-fledged farm.


Companies struggle to meet state policy in hiring small, diverse businesses, contractors say

Construction companies winning state contracts are struggling to find subcontractors certified as small businesses or as minority- or women-owned enterprises, a state working group found.