Legislative Update 2/11/15 — ‘Following Too Closely’ Clears Senate Committee; ‘Maintenance Funding for Road Diets’ Still in the Works

After getting a pleasant surprise yesterday, while expecting Sen. Reeves’ SB1220/Following Too Closely to go into House Transportation SubCommittee2 next Monday, we learned instead that it had bypassed Sub2 and been heard directly in House Transportation yesterday morning, where it was reported by a 19-3 vote, with only Delegates Hugo (Prince William) & Austin (Bedford) joining Scott Garrett (Lynchburg) in opposing it. Now it goes on to the House Floor, where final passage should happen later this week.

Del. De Steph’s identical House Bill 1342 was handled this afternoon in Senate Transportation by being included in a bloc with several other bills that had identical versions on the Senate side, and the bloc was reported unanimously without any discussion. Now it goes on to the Senate floor for final passage which should also happen later this week.

The other bill we were interested in that was on the Senate Trans docket this afternoon, Del. Loupassi’s HB1402 which would permit VDOT maintenance reimbursement to Cities and Towns for lane miles that are converted to bike or transit lanes did generate some discussion. After some back and forth it was “Passed by for the Day”, with the patron and Transportation Dept. officials being directed to discuss it further with the Senators who had concerns about its language so that some changes could be made prior to the bill being heard again next Wednesday.

Prior to that, we have only SB781 “Crossing the Double Yellow Line” and SB882 “the Dooring bill”, both of which will be heard in House Trans Sub2 next Monday. As usual, we can use the help of our Northern VA folks to ask Del. LeMunyon’s support and our Hampton Roads folks to ask Del. Taylor’s so we can get these bills out of this SubCommittee, which would appear to be our last major obstacle.

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