VACo spoke in opposition to HB 1710 (Krizek) on the floor of the House Education Committee’s Subcommittee #2 on January 16. The bill instructs the Virginia Board of Education to make regulations requiring each new purchased public school bus to be equipped with a seat belt consisting of a lap belt and shoulder strap or harness in every seat. The bill would also require that every school board also ensure that such seat belt equipment is present in every school bus by July 1, 2037.
While some localities have already begun to voluntarily move in this direction, most localities have not. Upgrading a school division’s fleet of school buses to include new seat belts or purchasing new buses to comply would create a significant fiscal impact to localities.
HB 1710 was recommended to be reported and rereferred to the House Appropriations Committee on a 6-4 vote.
VACo Contact: Jeremy Bennett