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PO Box 406, Richmond VA 23219
Phone: 804-698-1009
Fax: 804-698-6709
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PO Box 117, Glade Hill VA 24092
Phone: 540-576-2600
Fax: 804-698-6709

PO Box 117, Glade Hill VA 24092
Phone: 540-489-8989

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The Poindexter Report, Week #4, Jan. 30 - Feb. 3, 2012
The House dealt with a heavy agenda this week. Despite claims by some that the House is concentrating on social issues, firearms, and Voter ID bills, the emphasis continues to be on economic development, jobs, education, and government reform. In these areas, we are concentrating on 10 jobs bills, 9 education bills, and 4 government reform bills. Voter ID bills account for 0.15% of House bills filed and 0.8% of all House bills passed, while the 4 gun bills are 0.3% of all House bills filed and 1.6% of House bills passed to date. The other side of the aisle in contrast has 45 bills dealing in some way with increasing taxes or costs to Virginians, and 14 bills for such subjects as expanding eligibility for in-state tuition to illegal aliens, banning smoking in parks, and legalizing marijuana.

I’m happy to report the staffing issue at the Brookneal Hatchery was favorably resolved this week. This hatchery provides the vital stripper fingerlings for Smith Mountain Lake and elsewhere. The DGIF, Secretary of Natural Resources, and the Governor’s staff listened carefully to legislators and agreed to grant a hiring freeze exception to maintain the hatchery’s operations. Unrelated to this specific issue but relevant to the hatchery, I was informed there was a serious “piping” failure at the plant. DGIF assures me they are doing everything possible to expedite repairs.

At the request of Governor McDonnell, I am carrying a bill, HB541, that would provide 6 major customer service and safety improvements to DMV’s current operations. One improvement provided in the legislation is a switch to a more durable, weather-proof, temporary license tag. I’ve heard from car dealers, law enforcement officers, and car purchasers that the past and current temporary tags are not durable, do not contain proper information, and require too much “bookkeeping.” Earlier this week, HB541 was reported by a Transportation subcommittee to the full committee and on Thursday it was reported to the floor of the House unanimously. I believe this legislation addresses serious and necessary improvements to DMV’s operations and I hope it passes this year.

You will remember from my update last week, I introduced legislation this year that would hold an individual convicted of methamphetamine production financially accountable for clean-up costs imposed on the locality. I’m pleased to report this bill, HB1037, passed the House on Friday and will soon be heard in the Senate.

I am a co-patron of HB940, a bill introduced by Delegate Lingamfelter that would repeal the current ban on purchasing more than one handgun a month. When this restriction was put in place, the technology used to verify a felon or someone else prohibited from purchasing a firearm was much less developed than it is today. Right now, a prospective firearm purchaser is subject to the National Instant Check System, a national background search that was not in place in 1993 when the one-gun-a-month bill was enacted. The prospective firearm purchaser is also processed by the Virginia registrations system which contains data beyond that in the federal system. Given the current federal regulations in place by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco & Firearms, Virginia should join the other 46 states that do not prohibit purchasing more than one handgun per month.

One result of our nation’s stressed economy and high unemployment levels is a major increase in SNAP, or food stamp, recipients. The current structure of the SNAP program, a once-a-month deposit of funds to a debit card on the first of every month, adversely affects small grocery, convenience, and country stores whose owners and staff are hard-pressed to meet the challenges of an increase of 500-800% in SNAP sales on the first of each month. Also, SNAP customers whose schedules do not allow them to shop on that first day, later find empty shelves and ravaged ‘on sale’ sections. Obviously, this situation also adversely affects other customers. I have proposed staggering the SNAP deposits over a nine day period with one-fourth of the recipients receiving their deposits on one of four deposit days during that nine day period. This would not change the amount each recipient receives, or require any one person to wait any longer from one month’s deposit to another. This would reduce the pressure on grocery stores and ensure that all customers have better access to the food they need when they need it.

I have been contacted by a huge number of individuals concerning lifting the current ban on Sunday hunting. I am a life-long hunter, farmer, church member, and landowner who has operated on the schedule of working during the week and hunting on Saturdays, so I understand and can relate to each side of the argument. Numerous bills were introduced this year that would lift the ban in some form or another. One lifted the ban only for a few northern Virginia counties, while another lifted it everywhere. Amendments were proposed to only allow Sunday hunting on one’s own property, only after 2:00p.m., prohibiting dogs, etc.

I determined to weigh the intended consequences with the unintended consequences or, more precisely, ask what this bill would do that isn’t stated in its language. I followed each proposal closely—especially HB1002, the only bill that went before the Natural Resources subcommittee and which would allow Sunday hunting in northern Virginia only. After consideration, the subcommittee voted not to report this bill to full committee. This does not mean the possibility of the Sunday hunting ban being lifted is out of the question this year, as the Senate has sent over a bill to the House that would lift the ban on private land.

My HB540, dealing with Project Labor Agreements which in effect result in a union monopoly or near monopoly on government contracts such as large road projects, was similar to a previous bill (HB33), so the committee tabled my bill at my request, and I co-patroned HB33. HB33, the Fair and Open Competition in Government Contracting Act, passed the House this week and will result in fair competition and, hence, lower costs to Virginia taxpayers.

Visitors to my office last week included our 9th District sheriffs, Patrick County Public Schools educators, students from Ferrum College—who dropped by my office to thank me for my support of the Tuition Assistance Grant program, representatives from Franklin County’s Carilion hospital, and an enthusiastic group dressed in Virginia Tech’s orange and maroon celebrating “Hokie Day at the Capitol.” Among them was Sam Lionberger, who stopped by to discuss several issues, including Virginia Tech’s focus on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) education, of which I am a strong supporter.

To schedule a meeting with me or arrange for a tour of our Capitol, please contact my Legislative Aides, Alex Thorup and Tom Wells at (804)698-1009 or email DelCPoindexter@House.Virginia.Gov .


“Entrepreneurs and their small business enterprises are responsible for almost all the economic growth in the United States".
Ronald Reagan
Courtesy Ronald Reagan Library
“Whatever else history says about me when I’m gone, I hope it will record that I appealed to your best hopes, not your worst fears, to your confidence rather than your doubts. My dream is that you will travel the road ahead with liberty’s lamp guiding your steps and opportunity’s arm steadying your way".
Ronald Reagan
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