HB 1733 (Anderson), which would have provided for a process by which local elected officials could be recalled from office, was left in House Privileges and Elections Committee. Currently, removal from office is a judicial proceeding that is initiated by voter petition; the bill would have provided for recall elections, to be triggered by a petition signed by a number of registered voters equal to 20 percent of the votes cast for the office in the most recent election. VACo had expressed some concern about introducing changes to an established process.
HB 2364 (Heretick), which provides that an elected or appointed constitutional officer or local official who is convicted of a felony is to be automatically suspended upon conviction, regardless of any appeals, passed the House with an emergency clause. During the suspension, the officer’s salary is to be kept in a separate account and would be paid to the officer if he or she prevailed on appeal. As introduced, HB 2364 and its Senate companion, SB 1487 (Lewis), were limited to Constitutional Officers, but the measures were broadened in House Privileges and Elections Committee.
HB 1409 (Cole), which permits the General Assembly to make technical adjustments to legislative district boundaries after redistricting in order to fix split precincts, was reported by the House Privileges and Elections Committee and passed the House 62-33. The bill has been referred to the Senate Privileges and Elections Committee. VACo continues to support this legislation.
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VACo Contact: Katie Boyle