2024 Session Week Six

It’s halftime of the 2024 legislative session. Leading up to “crossover,” when House bills move over to the Senate and vice versa, we had a few extraordinarily long floor sessions this week during which we voted on hundreds of bills. Let’s jump right into the updates. 

Halftime Report

All told, over the past few weeks, we’ve successfully passed eight of my bills out of the House of Delegates, which now will be considered by the Senate. You can read more about those bills here

Press Conference

On Wednesday, a number of Delegates and Senators held a press conference to discuss bills that seek to address the criminalization of poverty in Virginia. One of my bills that passed the House — HB 896 — was highlighted and discussed in several news articles by the Legal Aid Justice Center and Courthouse News Service.

Things to Watch: Virginia’s Budget Process

This weekend, both the House of Delegates and the State Senate will release their respective budget proposals. Budgets aren’t just about numbers, but our values and priorities as well. I’ll have much more to report on the House budget next week.

As you may recall, the Governor released his introduced budget last December. One of my major concerns with the Governor’s proposal is his focus on providing tax relief for the wealthy and tax hikes for working class families through a higher sales tax rate. As the chart below shows, taking that kind of approach would double down on our upside down tax code, which hasn’t been modernized since the 1980s. We should instead be focused on the needs of everyday families. 

Meetings with Community Leaders

As always, I met with many local advocacy groups and constituents this week to learn about their legislative priorities. 

 A surprise visit from some wonderful constituents in Norfolk’s 94th District!

One of my favorite things to in session is meet with the next generation. George Mason should be proud of these students for advocating and using their voice.

A meeting with advocates from Planned Parenthood.

Getting ready for the Courts of Justice Committee.

Upcoming Opportunities

  • The Sorensen Institute for Political Leadership is accepting applications for their High School Leaders Program (HSLP). HSLP “prepares future leaders for ethical and responsible civic engagements and public service in the Commonwealth of Virginia.” The online application for their upcoming July program is due on March 25, 2024. You can learn more on their website

As always, thank you for the opportunity to serve as your delegate. Stay tuned for more updates!


Phil Hernandez