Removal of public officers from office; recall elections for certain elected and appointed officers. (HB1733)

Introduced By

Del. Rich Anderson (R-Woodbridge) with support from co-patron Del. Dickie Bell (R-Staunton)


Passed Committee
Passed House
Passed Senate
Signed by Governor
Became Law


Removal of public officers from office; recall elections for certain elected and appointed officers. Provides a process by which elected officers and officers appointed to an elected office may be recalled and removed from office. The recall process is initiated by a petition signed by a number of registered voters residing within the jurisdiction of the officer equal to 20 percent of the total number of votes cast at the last election for the office the officer holds. The bill requires the timing and conduct of the recall election to comply with the provisions governing special elections. Any registered voter qualified to vote for the officer subject to the recall may vote in the recall election. If a majority of the votes are for removal of the officer, the officer is removed from office and the vacancy is filled in accordance with law. The bill retains the statutory reasons for removal. The bill retains the process for removal by the courts for officers appointed for a term certain. Read the Bill »


Bill Has Failed


01/07/2017Prefiled and ordered printed; offered 01/11/17 17100134D
01/07/2017Referred to Committee on Privileges and Elections
01/12/2017Assigned P & E sub: Elections
01/26/2017Impact statement from DPB (HB1733)
02/08/2017Left in Privileges and Elections


Tom writes:

While voters recalling an official for just cause has a great deal of appeal, a recall election and a possible special election to to fill the office both come with significant costs to taxpayers.

Waldo Jaquith writes:

That seems like a weird objection, Tom. If a legislator is so corrupt, criminal, or unpopular as to fail to survive a recall election, the cost of getting them out of office is of very little relevance. It is far more important to have law-abiding elected officials than to save some money. I mean, it's expensive to arrest, try, and imprison people, too—but we do it.