Conservators of the peace, special; authority. (HB151)

Introduced By

Del. Buddy Fowler (R-Ashland)


Passed Committee
Passed House
Passed Senate
Signed by Governor
Became Law


Special conservators of the peace; authority; insurance. Replaces the powers that may be provided in the power of appointment for a special conservator of the peace (SCOP), which currently may include all powers, functions, duties, responsibilities, and authority of any other conservator of the peace, with only the duties for which the SCOP is qualified by training established by the Department of Criminal Justice Services. The bill requires the order of appointment to provide that such duties shall be exercised only in the geographical limitations specified by the court. The bill requires that the order delineate a limit beyond which the SCOP may not effectuate an arrest following a close pursuit. The bill prohibits all SCOPs from using the word "police" and all SCOPs other than those employed by a state agency from using the seal of the Commonwealth on their equipment in the performance of their duties. The bill provides for certain exceptions from its provisions for SCOPs employed by the Shenandoah Valley Regional Airport Commission and the Richmond Metropolitan Transportation Authority, provided that such SCOPs meet all the requirements for law-enforcement officers, including the minimum compulsory training requirements. Read the Bill »


Bill Has Passed


12/20/2017Prefiled and ordered printed; offered 01/10/18 18101359D
12/20/2017Referred to Committee on Militia, Police and Public Safety
01/15/2018Assigned MPPS sub: Subcommittee #2
01/17/2018Impact statement from DPB (HB151)
01/25/2018Subcommittee recommends reporting with substitute (5-Y 0-N)
01/26/2018Reported from Militia, Police and Public Safety with substitute (21-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
01/26/2018Committee substitute printed 18106001D-H1
01/30/2018Read first time
01/31/2018Read second time
01/31/2018Committee substitute agreed to 18106001D-H1
01/31/2018Engrossed by House - committee substitute HB151H1
02/01/2018Read third time and passed House BLOCK VOTE (97-Y 0-N)
02/01/2018VOTE: BLOCK VOTE PASSAGE (97-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
02/01/2018Reconsideration of passage agreed to by House
02/01/2018Passed House BLOCK VOTE (98-Y 0-N)
02/01/2018VOTE: BLOCK VOTE PASSAGE 2 (98-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
02/02/2018Constitutional reading dispensed
02/02/2018Referred to Committee for Courts of Justice
02/09/2018Impact statement from DPB (HB151H1)
02/14/2018Reported from Courts of Justice with amendment (10-Y 3-N) (see vote tally)
02/16/2018Constitutional reading dispensed (38-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
02/19/2018Passed by for the day
02/20/2018Passed by for the day
02/21/2018Read third time
02/21/2018Reading of amendment waived
02/21/2018Committee amendment agreed to
02/21/2018Amendments #1, #2 by Senator Reeves withdrawn
02/21/2018Reading of amendments waived
02/21/2018Amendments #3, #4, #5 by Senator Reeves agreed to
02/21/2018Engrossed by Senate as amended
02/21/2018Passed Senate with amendments (40-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
02/22/2018Placed on Calendar
02/23/2018Placed on Calendar
02/23/2018Senate amendments rejected by House (0-Y 96-N 1-A)
02/23/2018VOTE:REJECTED (0-Y 96-N 1-A) (see vote tally)
02/27/2018Senate insisted on amendments (40-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
02/27/2018Senate requested conference committee
02/28/2018House acceded to request
02/28/2018Conferees appointed by House
02/28/2018Delegates: Fowler, Cline, Kory
03/01/2018Conferees appointed by Senate
03/01/2018Senators: Obenshain, Howell, Norment
03/06/2018C Amended by conference committee
03/06/2018Conference substitute printed 18107974D-H2
03/06/2018Conference report agreed to by Senate (40-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
03/08/2018Conference report agreed to by House (96-Y 0-N)
03/08/2018VOTE: ADOPTION (96-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
03/10/2018Bill text as passed House and Senate (HB151ER)
03/10/2018Signed by Speaker
03/12/2018Impact statement from DPB (HB151ER)
03/12/2018Signed by President
03/20/2018Enrolled Bill communicated to Governor on March 20, 2018
03/20/2018G Governor's Action Deadline Midnight, April 9, 2018
04/06/2018G Approved by Governor-Chapter 792 (effective 7/1/18)
04/06/2018G Acts of Assembly Chapter text (CHAP0792)


This bill was discussed on the floor of the General Assembly. Below is all of the video that we have of that discussion, 2 clips in all, totaling 3 minutes.


This is a transcript of the video clips in which this bill is discussed.

so I want to give steve landes the box and the moving speech award. [Cheers and applause] now I'm going to turn it back over to delegate landes. >> Mr. Speaker, members of the house, as you know, we pick a freshman of the year every year. [Laughter] >> and as many members know that have served for a while, for union members you probably don't know this but delegate habeeb was freshman of the year for like three, four years in a row even after he was no longer freshman. Mr. Speaker, as you all know, there's been a certain member of the house that seems to have received the applause on every piece of legislation and today every amendment that's been agreed to in conference report that he's put forward. So we -- I think delegate kilgore and I felt that we just had to -- and no disrespect to you actually freshmen -- we just had to give the freshmen of the year award to delegate pillion for all his great efforts this session. [Cheers and applause] >> I will.


Ron Jackson writes:

Stripping the word "POLICE" from the badge worn by a special conservator of the peace (SCOP)needlessly endangers the officer in the performance of duty. The duties of a SCOP include arresting wrong doers for breach of the peace. A SCOP must be viewed by a wrong doer as a public official empowered to make arrests; otherwise resistance, possibly violent, to the arrest is sure to follow. Security guards wear a badge but it does not bear the title "police" because a security guard generally may not make arrests with peace officer authority. A SCOP officer may because he is a law enforcement official, according to Black's Law Dictionary. The arbitrary nature of this bill sets up two classes of SCOP officers; those who will be treated with the dignity deserved by this ancient office, and the other unlucky souls who have no benefactor looking out for their interests. Indeed, certain SCOP officers may use the title "police" due to the interposition of certain persons who understand an officer must be viewed with legitimacy when law enforcement action is taken. This bill creates a danger for SCOP officers and the public they serve. Abuse of office can be remedied by the courts or sheriffs; disrespecting honorable SCOP officers is an over reaction and the method contemplated is arbitrary. If arbitrary, then it is repugnant.