RICHMOND, Va. (March 11, 2016) – A 2nd Virginia bill that would take a small, but important, first step in setting the foundation to reject federal some EPA rules and regulations in practice passed the state Senate last week and now sits on the governor’s desk awaiting his action.
Thirty-three delegates co-sponsored House Bill 2 (HB2). The legislation would prohibit the Department of Environmental Quality from unilaterally implementing EPA “Clean Power Plan” emission requirements.
The bill passed the House 64-34 in January. On March 3, the Senate approved the measure 21-19. The legislation was transmitted to Gov. Terry McAuliffe on March 9. He has until midnight Monday to either sign or veto the bill. McAuliffe vetoed a similar bill last week, and misrepresented the Virginia state constitution in the process. The Senate failed to garner enough votes to overturn the veto.
Under the proposed law, the Department of Environmental Protection would be required to consider a number of specific factors when developing any state plan to comply with EPA emission standards. Before submitting any plan to the federal agency, the DEQ would have to submit it, along with a detailed report, to the state legislature for approval.
Not later than 15 days following the completion of DEQ’s development of a state plan, DEQ shall transmit to the Senate and the House of Delegates a copy of the state plan and the accompanying report developed in accordance with subdivision a of §2. Upon receiving the state plan and accompanying report, the Senate…