2020 Legislative Survey


Delegate Kirk Cox


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1.  From the following list of issues, which issue do you believe should be the top priority of the Virginia House of Delegates?
Please select one.
2.  Do you think Virginians pay too much, too little, or about the right amount in state taxes?
3.  In the 2019 state budget, the General Assembly created a Taxpayer Relief Fund in order to return excess state revenue to taxpayers. During the summer/fall of this year, approximately $450 million was returned to eligible taxpayers. In his budget proposal, Governor Northam has proposed withdrawing the remaining funds in the Taxpayer Relief Fund for deposit in reserve funds and for spending as part of the regular budget. Do you support or oppose returning the remaining funds in the Taxpayer Relief Fund to taxpayers?

4.  Virginia spends about $16 billion per year on K-12 education, or about $11,000 per student per year. The state graduation rate is over 90% and school accreditation was up 6% from last year. Do you think Virginia invests too much, not enough, or about the right amount in its public school system?
5.  Some elected officials advocate expanding early childhood education in Virginia by offering universal Pre-K to all children through Virginia’s public schools, which they say improves long-term educational and economic outcomes. Others argue universal Pre-K offers little tangible benefit and would increase class sizes, force local school divisions to take on debt in order to build new classrooms, and cost the state nearly $600 million per year. Which of the following best describes your view on early childhood education in Virginia?
Please select one.
6.  In 2019, the General Assembly enacted the first college tuition freeze in 20 years by providing additional funding for those schools who held the line on expenses. How do you feel about the cost of college tuition in Virginia?
7.  In his proposed budget, Governor Northam included $145 million to fund tuition-free community college for low-income students as part of his “Get Skilled, Get a Job, Give Back” initiative, or “G3” program. The program as proposed would include wraparound funding for not only academic tuition, but for food, transportation, and childcare. A community service requirement would be included, and the G3 program would target high demand fields such as information technology, public safety, and early childhood education.

For more information, the full press release from the Governor’s office announcing this proposal can be found here.

Would you support community college tuition as outlined in the Governor’s proposed “G3” program?
8.  The Tuition Assistance Grant (TAG) program provides grants to Virginia students attending private colleges and universities, such as Liberty University or Randolph-Macon College. In his budget proposal, Governor Northam has proposed eliminating the TAG program for students taking online courses. This could disproportionately impact non-traditional students including working adults and single parents. Do you support ending the TAG program for students taking online courses?
9.  Should the children of illegal immigrants who have been here for more than five years, graduated from high school, been accepted to a state university, and plan to apply for permanent residency be allowed to receive in-state tuition?
10.  Numerous legislative proposals have been introduced over the last several years aimed at reducing the cost of healthcare and increasing transparency and efficiency in the system.

Of the following proposals, which ideas do you support?
Require healthcare providers to show upfront the costs of a service before providing it to the patient.
Allow patients to “shop” for cheaper prices for non-emergency care such as x-rays and MRIs.
Allow for the sale of catastrophic health coverage plans, which provide essential health benefits to individuals under the age of 30 for a significantly lesser price than other plans under the Affordable Care Act (ACA).
Raise the cigarette tax by 30 cents per pack to fund a state reinsurance program that proponents claim would reduce premiums for Virginians purchasing insurance through the marketplace.
11.  In his budget proposal, Governor Northam included a gas tax increase of 12 cents per gallon over a three-year period (4 cents per gallon each year) to help fund transportation and transit projects across Virginia. Do you support an increase in the gas tax?
12.  Under current law, records from past Governors are reviewed by the Library of Virginia and released long after they leave office, in many cases a decade or more. Would you support or oppose legislation requiring all Governors to release their public records no more than one year after leaving office?
13.  In 2018, the General Assembly passed legislation creating a pilot program (House Bill 883) to reduce regulations in certain state agencies. Since then, 1,200 regulations that are not specifically authorized by law have been identified for elimination in just two agencies. Would you support expand this program to all state agencies?
14.  The nonpartisan Virginia Public Access Project (vpap.org) estimates that over $15 million in out-of-state money was spent during the recent 2019 General Assembly elections. Do you support legislation that would ban out-of-state money from being spent on Virginia elections?
15. A number of legislators have introduced several pieces of gun control legislation. Please indicate below which proposals you support and which proposals you oppose.
“Red Flag” laws allowing police and other law enforcement to take firearms from those judged to be dangerous to themselves or others.
Universal background checks for any gun transaction between any two people, regardless of location or relationship.
Ban on “assault weapons” such as modern sporting rifles and common semi-automatic handguns.
Require a background check for any sale of a firearm by a private seller, commonly referred to as the “gun show loophole.”
Allow local governments to ban firearms, including concealed carry, on all government property.
Ban firearms in the State Capitol, Capitol Square, Pocahontas Building, and other legislative branch properties.
Ban firearms in the State Capitol, Capitol Square, Pocahontas Building, and other legislative branch properties.
16.  Some Virginia legislators are proposing that Virginia repeal its photo identification law that requires people to show a photo ID before voting. Virginia does offer free ID cards to all residents for the purposes of ensuring that all voters can cast their ballot on Election Day. Do you support or oppose repealing Virginia’s voter ID law?
17.  Currently, Virginia does not allow early voting but does have absentee voting, both in-person and by mail. Early voting does not require a reason, but absentee voting does. Some have proposed early voting as a way to ease lines at the polls on Election Day and increase voter participation. Opponents argue that there is no indication early voting increases participation and that the costs of early voting, plus the challenges of keeping the votes secure for a long period of time, do not make it worthwhile. Do you support or oppose early voting in Virginia?
18.  Ballots from military personnel stationed overseas are often not counted in Virginia elections due to late arrivals stemming from slow delivery by postal services. Do you support legislation that would allow military personnel currently stationed overseas to return their ballots by electronic means such as email?
19.  House Bill 77 has been introduced to place a moratorium on the production and use of fossil fuels in Virginia, including affordable and clean sources of energy like natural gas. Do you support or oppose banning the use of fossil fuels in the Commonwealth?
20.  In 2019, House Bill 2491 was introduced to repeal several abortion related requirements in state law including the requirement that late-term abortions be performed in a hospital and a requirement that three physicians sign off on a third-trimester abortion. Similar legislation is expected to be introduced during the 2020 session. Do you support or oppose this legislation?
21.  Virginia has a “Right to Work” law that prohibits employers from requiring employees to join a union and pay union dues as a condition of employment. Supporters of this law contend that this law is one of the reasons Virginia is regarded as one of the best states for business. Opponents of this law suggest that it is anti-union and discourages employee organization. Legislation has been introduced for the 2020 legislative session that would repeal Virginia’s longstanding right to work legislation (House Bill 153). Do you support or oppose Virginia’s Right to Work law? 
22.  Casino gambling is not currently legal in Virginia, but recently there have been proposals to change existing law and establish casinos in several economically distressed localities. Proponents of casino gambling point to the potential for economic development and increased state revenue that could be used to fund core government services, such as education or transportation, as well as new jobs for area residents. Opponents contend casino gambling enables addictive behavior and the risks would outweigh any potential benefit. Do you support Virginia allowing casino gambling?
Please select one.
23.  One of the fundamental responsibilities of the legislature following the national census every ten years is to redraw legislative district lines for both the United States Congress and the Virginia General Assembly so that each district has a similar number of people within its boundaries. This process is commonly referred to as redistricting. Last year, a bipartisan majority in the General Assembly passed a constitutional amendment that would create nonpartisan and independent redistricting commission and ban the use of race and political preferences in the consideration of new lines. Do you support or oppose this amendment creating a nonpartisan redistricting process in Virginia?