Archive for February 2008
During today’s floor session, House Republicans attempted to trump up Sen. Donald McEachin’s alternative dispute resolution measure, SB161, as an assault on Virginia’s Right to Work law.
In response, Democratic Leader Ward Armstrong introduced a floor amendment explicitly clarifying that the bill would not “affect, diminish, or repeal” the Right to Work law, in order to assuage any real concerns:
Republican Leader Morgan Griffith countered with some rather counterintuitive logic, saying that putting something into the Code of Virginia doesn’t make it law. Go figure.
In any case, the bill was only before the House in the first place as a purely political move, since the Republican leadership used their new rules gimmick to bring it directly to the floor without a recommendation. In the video below (taken earlier this week), the House Rules committee defeats Del. Kris Amundson’s motion to report SB161 as usual, prompting Del. Armstrong to express his ongoing concern with bypassing committees of expertise:
Unfortunately, House Republicans again opted for rhetoric and political gamesmanship over real solutions. SB161 died on a party-line vote.
Dels. Ward Armstrong and Brian Moran spoke on the House floor yesterday, further addressing the House GOP’s questionable math when it comes to funding public education in coming years.
The nonpartisan Joint Legislative Audit and Review Commission found that the Republicans’ budget methodology would result in “$227 million less in state aid to localities for teachers’ salaries,” a change the Roanoke Times today calls a “flimflam.”
This afternoon, the Appropriations subcommittee on Elementary & Secondary Education killed the second teacher pay raise measure to come before them this session: Sen. Creigh Deeds’ SB267.
Like Del. Brian Moran’s HB92, which died in the same committee last month, the bill attempted to raise Virginia’s average teacher salary to the national average.
In the audio file below, Del. Kirk Cox makes a substitute motion to kill the bill after Del. Jim Scott moves to report it:
The bill died on a party line vote, with only Dels. Scott and Mamye BaCote opposing the move. Cox was joined by GOP Dels. Clarke Hogan, Beverly Sherwood, Phil Hamilton and chairman Bob Tata.
Republican Del. Bob Marshall attempted to introduce an unwelcome floor amendment to yesterday’s budget, incurring the wrath of his own caucus in the process.
As Marshall introduced the measure to the Clerk’s desk, Del. Steve Landes moved to take a vote immediately. Upon Speaker Bill Howell’s ruling that the motion had been properly made, Del. Marshall appealed the ruling of the Chair and lamented the Republican-controlled House’s loss of “decency” and “comity.”