The Legislative Line

Susan Gaston
Gaston Group LLC

The 2020 Session of the General Assembly of Virginia convened on Wednesday, January 8th. This “long,” 60-day Session sees a new Democrat majority in the House of Delegates (55 Democrats to 445 Republicans), a new Democrat majority in the Senate (21 Democrats to 19 Republicans) and a Democrat Administration…the first time since 1994 that both Chambers and the Executive Branch are led by the same party.

New majorities bring new leadership, and for the first time in Virginia’s history, the House of Delegates is led by a female, and the first time that the House has been led by a member of the Jewish faith. Speaker Eileen Filler-Corn assumed the gavel, assisted by another first: the first female Clerk of the House of Delegates, Suzette Denslow.

Leadership in both bodies is dominated by Northern Virginia legislators, as are committee chair positions, but Hampton Roads is fortunate to have some dominant members in leadership as well, particularly in the Senate:

Sen. Louise Lucas, Portsmouth        President Pro Tempore

                                                            Chairwoman, Senate Committee on Education & Health


Sen. Mamie Locke, Hampton            Senate Democratic Caucus Chair

                                                            Chairwoman, Senate Committee on Rules


Sen. Tommy Norment, James City    Senate Republican Minority Leader


Del. Cliff Hayes, Chesapeake            Chairman, House Committee on Communications, Technology & Innovation


Del. Jeion Ward, Hampton                Chairwoman, House Committee on Labor & Commerce


Del. Joe Lindsey                                 Chairman, House Committee on Privileges & Elections


Sen. Lynwood Lewis                          Chairman, Senate Committee on Local Government

We should note, too, that Del. Mike Mullin from Newport News is the Vice Chairman of the House Committee on Rules, one of the most important, and most powerful, committees in the legislature.

The weekly meeting of the Hampton Roads Caucus, which convenes each Thursday morning at 7:30 AM, never has been more widely attended, as legislators, business leaders and other regional influencers work to coalesce around important issues that impact our region and make Hampton Roads, the “757,” as competitive and relevant as Northern Virginia.

For the Virginia REALTORS®, our legislative agenda has begun to move through the subcommittee and committee process. We had a BIG win today in the Senate General Laws & Technology Committee, when our Association Health Plan bill, SB 235, reported unanimously on a 15-0 vote. This places the bill to be heard on the floor of the Senate within the week.

Below is a chart showing the status of our primary bills – those that were introduced at the Association’s request:

VAR Leg Agenda Tracker 2020 copy

Also, here is a link to the primary bill list that covers all of the legislation that we are tracking, including those that we oppose, support, will amend, etc.

VR 2020 Action Bills_

VPAR’s General Assembly Delegation Contact Information


Del. Emily Brewer, R-64th, Smithfield               (804)698-1064

Del. Martha Mugler, R-91st, Hampton               (804) 698-1091

Del. Keith Hodges, R-98th, Urbanna                  (804) 698-1098

Del. Mike Mullin, D-93rd, Newport News            (804) 698-1093 

Del. Amanda Batten, R-96th, Norge                  (804) 698-1096

Del. Marcia “Cia” Price, D-95th, Newport News (804) 698-1095

Del. Jeoin Ward, D-92nd, Hampton                   (804) 698-1092

Del. Shelly Simonds, R-94th, Newport News      (804) 698-1094

Sen. Mamie Locke, D-2nd, Hampton                 (804) 698-7502

Sen. Monty Mason, D-1st, Williamsburg           (804) 698-7501

Sen. Tommy Norment, R-3rd, James City          (804) 698-7503

VPAR Leg Line #1 2020

For additional information or other details, please contact Susan Gaston, VPAR’s Legislative Consultant, at 757-871-1445, or by e-mail at