General Laws Position Statements - 2010 Legislative Program
Support legislation to allow “no-excuse” absentee voting, allowing any registered voter to vote absentee without requiring that the voter state a reason for his/her desire to vote absentee. Support legislation that would provide for extended polling hours statewide to allow voters additional time to reach polling places. Monitor consideration of an option for local governments to extend polling hours in the case of an emergency.
(Reaffirms previous position.)
Building Code Violations
Support legislation that would increase the maximum amount of civil penalties for all types of Building Code violations to make them the same as civil penalties for zoning ordinance violations. Under current law, the maximum civil penalty for any one Building Code violation is $100 for the initial summons and $150 for each additional summons, with a cumulative maximum of $3,000 in civil penalties arising from the same operative set of facts. In contrast, Va. Code §15.2-2209 allows for a maximum civil penalty of $200 for an initial summons for a zoning ordinance violation and $500 for each additional summons, with a cumulative maximum of $5,000 in civil penalties arising from the same operative set of facts.
Support legislation necessary to enable the disclosure of certain local government financial transactions, provided that issues of privacy and cost are addressed. Work is currently underway on the County’s financial software that will provide more detailed budget and expenditure data to the public when the Enterprise Resource Plan project is completed.
Support legislation to permit the County, as an urban county executive form of government, to prohibit discrimination in the areas of housing, real estate transactions, employment, public accommodations, credit, and education on the basis of sexual orientation. Fairfax County has already taken actions pursuant to existing State enabling legislation in the preceding areas on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, pregnancy, child birth, and disability.
(Previously a Board initiative; included as position statement.)
Signs in VDOT Rights-of-Way
Support legislation that would amend Va. Code §33.1-375.1 to provide that: (i) all penalties and costs collected as part of local enforcement of illegal signs within VDOT rights-of-way shall be paid to the County; and (ii) other signs and advertising not specified in subsections (C) (1) and (2) of the statute may remain in the right-of-way during certain specified times.
Videoconferencing of Advisory Boards
Support legislation to establish a limited exception to provisions of the Virginia Freedom of Information Act that would permit certain local citizen boards, authorities, and commissions to conduct meetings via videoconferencing, which would serve several goals, including (1) increasing volunteerism, especially among senior citizens, (2) reducing time commitments and long commutes on congested roads that now serve as impediments to those persons who serve on advisory panels, and (3) conserving fuel and lowering greenhouse gas emissions. Such a proposal should be crafted to apply only to entities that meet in an advisory capacity and are not required by statute.
(Reaffirms previous position)