Virginia State Senate will return to Science Museum for Aug. session
House also will meet away from state Capitol
A staff member for Virginia Senate Majority Leader Richard “Dick” Saslaw confirmed Friday that the Senate will meet at the Science Museum of Virginia for its special session Aug. 18. In April, for their veto session, senators gathered in a large room at the Richmond museum instead of their usual quarters to avoid spread of the COVID-19 virus.
State delegates plan to meet at the Stuart C. Siegel Center on the campus of Virginia Commonwealth University, Speaker Eileen Filler-Corn announced this week. The session will be closed to the public but will be live-streamed, the speaker’s news release said. The Senate has not announced whether its session will be live-streamed, but its April special session and other meetings during the regular session were available for viewing online.
Del. Sam Rasoul, D-Roanoke, announced in late July he had tested positive for COVID-19 and was recovering in isolation with his family, and Del. Delores McQuinn, D-Richmond, came down with the virus in March but has since recovered.
At the Aug. 18 session, both legislative bodies plan to amend the biennial state budget, in which new spending was frozen in April due to the economic impact of the coronavirus, and discuss reforms to policing and criminal justice following weeks of protest this summer.
The Senate Democrats, which hold a majority of seats, released part of their omnibus police reform bill Friday, including canceling supplemental state funding for any police department if they incur “disproportionate” use-of-force incidents in their jurisdiction.