Bills of Interest to Fairfax Effective July 1, 2013

July 1, 2013

News Highlights

  • Texting while driving now a primary offense.
  • Replaces 17.5 cents per gallon tax on gasoline and diesel with a 3.5 percent tax on gas and 6 percent tax on diesel.
  • Sales tax in Northern Virginia increased by 0.7 percent, for a total of 6 percent


Effective July 1, legislation will take effect in Virginia of interest to households living in Fairfax County.  The list of legislation is below with brief descriptions and includes such topics as transportation and school safety, among others.  For more information on a particular bill, visit the Legislative Information System.  

Bills of Interest to Fairfax County Taking Effect July 1

Traffic Safety

  • HB 1907 / SB 1222 provides that driving while texting is a traffic infraction punishable, for a first offense, by a fine of $125 and, for a second or subsequent offense, by a fine of $250.  
  • SB 1165 provides that the holder of a provisional driver's license under age 18 is not authorized to operate a motor vehicle with more than one passenger who is less than 21 years old unless the driver is accompanied by a parent or person acting in loco parentis who is occupying a seat beside the driver.

Taxes and Fees

HB 2313 contains a number of provisions regarding transportation revenues and allocation including:

Statewide Provisions:

  • Replaces 17.5 cents per gallon tax on gasoline and diesel with a 3.5 percent tax on gas and 6 percent tax on diesel.
  • Increases the automobile sales tax from 3 percent to 4.15 percent.
  • Increases the state sales tax from 5 percent to 5.3 percent.
  • Increases the state General Fund transfer to transportation from 0.5 percent to 0.675 percent.
  • Increases the fee for alternative fuel vehicles to $64.

Regional Provisions

  • Increases sales tax in Northern Virginia by 0.7 percent, for a total of 6 percent.
  • Imposes 2 percent transient occupancy tax.
  • Imposes a congestion relief fee [grantors tax] of $0.15/$100 valuation.
  • Repeals the local option to enact a 1% income tax by referendum.

School Safety

  • HB 2345 requires the Virginia Center for School Safety, in conjunction with the Department of State Police, the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services, and the Department of Education, to develop a model critical incident response training program for public school personnel and those providing services to schools.

  • HB 2346 requires each school, in its annual school safety audit, to complete a school inspection walk-through using a standardized checklist provided by the Virginia Center for School Safety, which shall incorporate crime prevention through environmental design principles. Each completed walk-through checklist shall be made available to the chief law-enforcement officer of the locality or his designee upon request.

  • SB 376 provides that any person who, in good faith and without malice, reports, investigates, or causes an investigation to be made into the activities of any person relating to conduct involving bomb threats or other explosives or alcohol or drug use at a school or institution of higher learning or in connection with a school or institution activity shall be immune from all civil liability that might be incurred as a result of making such a report or investigation.

  • SB 1378 provides that a person who engages in the "strawman" purchase of a firearm, where he purchases a firearm with the intent to resell or transport with the intent to resell outside of the Commonwealth to any person he knows is prohibited from purchasing a firearm, is guilty of a Class 4 felony and shall be sentenced to a mandatory minimum term of imprisonment of one year.

Other Bills

  • HB 1682 SB 706 provides that it is unlawful for any person who knows or should know that another person suffers from mental incapacity to, through the use of that other person's mental incapacity, take, obtain, or convert money or other thing of value belonging to that other person with the intent to permanently deprive him thereof.

  • HB 1982 permits treasurers to convey, with the consent of the taxpayer, any tax bill by permitting the taxpayer to access his tax bill online from a database on the treasurer's website.

  • HB 1990 allows localities to impose a license tax, not to exceed $250 annually, upon resident owners of motor vehicles that do not display license plates issued by the Commonwealth and that are not exempt from the requirements of displaying such license plates.

  • HB 2026 allows a member of a public body to participate in a meeting by electronic communication means due to personal matters under certain circumstances.

  • HB 2175 authorizes the Governor to request federal funds to construct a new veterans care center in Northern Virginia, and requires the State Treasurer to issue a short-term treasury loan in an amount up to $28.5 million for the state share of construction costs, once the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs has determined that federal funds will be allocated for the new center.

  • HB 2190 establishes a procedure for state review of the stringency of local stormwater ordinances. The bill requires localities within 30 days of the adoption of a more stringent stormwater ordinance or requirement to submit a letter report to the Department of Conservation and Recreation.

  • HB 2341 provides that a person who is qualified to register to vote may apply to register to vote by electronic means authorized by the State Board of Elections.


The final 2013 General Assembly Legislative Report to the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors is also available online (PDF).

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