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A Brief Examination of Legislation from the 2018 Virginia General Assembly

Published: July 27, 2018

Enhanced 9-1-1/NG9-1-1GENERAL ASSEMBLY (VIRGINIA)General Government ServicesGovernorInformation TechnologyInformation TechnologyJustice/Public Safety & Homeland SecurityProfessional ServicesVIRGINIA

A review of some relevant legislation from the Virginia General Assembly's 2018 Legislative Session

Deltek’s SLED research team has been conducting research on state legislation, particularly that related to procurement and information technology. This article examines some relevant legislation from the Virginia General Assembly’s 2018 sessions. Below are a few highlights of some relevant legislation that was introduced, and in some cases, passed and signed into law earlier this year.

Introduction

The Virginia General Assembly is a bicameral body composed of the 40 member Senate and 100 member House of Delegates. The Senate has 11 committees and the House has 14. The General Assembly meets annually, beginning on the second Wednesday of January for 60 days in even-numbered years and 30 days in odd-numbered years. There also is an option to extend these annual sessions by a maximum of 30 additional days. Since 1980, the legislature has been constitutionally required to convene a Reconvened Session on the sixth Wednesday after adjournment of any Regular or Special Session to review any recommendations from the Governor.

Relevant Legislation

In the 2018 legislative session, the General Assembly introduced 33 bills relating to the Virginia Public Procurement Act (VPAA). Of these, 8 bills were chaptered and signed into law. One bill with some substantive changes is HB 97. This will increase the maximum permissible aggregate or sum of all phases of single or term contracts for professional services that may be procured without requiring competitive negotiation from $60,000 to $80,000.

Although some bills pertaining to the VPPA were left in committee, a few of those introduced have significance to contracting with the state government, and would be worth monitoring should they be revisited in the future. One such bill, HB 193, sought to implement a bid match preference for Virginia Businesses. Under the bill, for contracts of $5,000 or more, a Virginia business would have an opportunity to match the lowest bid of an out-of-state bidder if the bid of the Virginia business is within 5% of the lowest bid. Another bill, HB 473, sought to bring about the use of best value contracting for state government procurement. Under this bill, the Commonwealth would use best value contracting, rather than awarding to the lowest responsive and responsible bidder. Both of these bills were introduced in the House during the Regular Session and were left in the General Laws Committee.

Additionally, other legislation was introduced relating to government procurement in specific important business sectors. One such example, HB 1338, was passed and establishes requirements regarding the implementation of a next generation 911 service. Through this law, the 911 Services Board is required to develop and implement next generation 911 service transition plans by July 1, 2023. Preliminary fiscal impact estimates list a value of between $16 and $23 million. 

Some legislation was introduced and passed that will affect administration related to IT professionals in the government. One such piece of legislation worth noting is HB 1221, which adds new duties for the Chief Information Officer pertaining to cybersecurity. This bill requires the Commonwealth CIO to conduct a comprehensive annual review of all executive branch agencies’ cybersecurity policies, with a particular focus on breaches in information technology from the past year and any steps taken to strengthen cybersecurity measures. HB 580 amends the Government Data Collection and Dissemination Practices Act by creating the new position of Chief Data Officer of the Commonwealth. This position will be responsible for developing guidelines on data usage, storage, and privacy, as well as overseeing data sharing in the Commonwealth to promote the use of data in improving the delivery of services.

Our examination of these few bills provides some insight into the Commonwealth’s legislative agenda that will impact government procurement. Further information on the activities of the 2018 legislative session can be found here. The next legislative session of the Virginia General Assembly will convene on January 9, 2019.

Source: Virginia General Assembly