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Commonwealth's Counties

Capitol Contact ALERT! Governor Vetoes School Construction Financing Bills

Contact Your Delegates and Senators Now to Support Override Vote!

On Monday night, April 8, Governor Youngkin vetoed HB 805 (Rasoul) and SB 14 (McPike), which passed the House and Senate with broad bipartisan support and at least two-thirds of each chamber voting in favor of the bills (71-26 and 27-13, respectively). This was in large part due to the support of VACo members and numerous other local government and K-12 advocates who testified in favor of the legislation. VACo encouraged the Governor to support this legislation.

ACTION REQUIRED – Call your Delegates (2-Part Email List – Delegates 1 | Delegates 2) and Senators NOW to urge them to continue to support HB 805 and SB 14.

VACo REQUESTS that members contact their Delegates and Senators and stress the importance of their continued support of this legislation as it returns to the General Assembly for the Reconvened Session on Wednesday, April 17. VACo Members – please urge your legislators to vote in favor of passing this legislation that will have a positive impact on many communities and families.

As previously reported, these bills would permit any county or city to impose an additional local sales and use tax of up to 1 percent, if initiated by a resolution of the local governing body and approved by voters at a local referendum. The revenues of such a local tax would be used solely for capital projects for the construction or renovation of schools. Localities that choose to exercise this authority, if approved by voter referendum, may use the revenues from such authority for school capital debt payments.


  • Currently, this authority is limited to the qualifying localities of Charlotte, Gloucester, Halifax, Henry, Mecklenburg, Northampton, Patrick, and Pittsylvania Counties and the City of Danville. Eight of these localities have opted to, and successfully passed, voter referendums to use this authority for capital projects.
  • It has been an absolute game changer for these localities. Some examples include, but are not limited to:
    • Halifax County is constructing a brand-new High School to replace their 50-plus-year-old, crumbling facility.
    • The City of Danville has been able to schedule a major renovation of Forest Hills Elementary school, which was built during the Great Depression.
    • Gloucester High School expects completion of a major multiyear, multi-phase renovation in 2025.
    • Henry County will begin work on multiple schools, including renovating a school built in 1927.
  • These bills do not require any locality to raise additional revenues unless the locality’s elected leaders and its citizens vote to do so through voter referendum. This gives parents and citizens a voice in how their children’s schools are funded.
  • No child in Virginia should have to go to a school with a leaky roof, an insufficient HVAC system, or one that was built prior to World War I. Every child deserves to go to a safe and modern school.

VACo Members – Please contact your Delegates (2-Part Email List – Delegates 1 | Delegates 2) and Senators today. Their support is critical to ensuring that the Commonwealth empowers local governments, parents, and citizens to provide that every child goes to a safe and modern school.

VACo Contact: Jeremy R. Bennett

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