Va. Freedom of Information Act; meetings conducted through electronic meetings, states of emergency. (HB444)

Introduced By

Del. Elizabeth Bennett-Parker (D-Alexandria) with support from co-patron Del. Will Wampler (R-Abingdon)


Passed Committee
Passed House
Passed Senate
Signed by Governor
Became Law


Virginia Freedom of Information Act; meetings conducted through electronic communication means. Amends existing provisions concerning electronic meetings by keeping the provisions for electronic meetings held in response to declared states of emergency, repealing the provisions that are specific to regional and state public bodies, and allowing certain public bodies to conduct all-virtual public meetings where all of the members who participate do so remotely and that the public may access through electronic communications means. The bill excepts local governing bodies, local school boards, planning commissions, architectural review boards, zoning appeals boards, and any board with the authority to deny, revoke, or suspend a professional or occupational license from the provisions that allow public bodies to conduct all-virtual public meetings. Definitions, procedural requirements, and limitations for all-virtual public meetings are set forth in the bill, along with technical amendments. The bill has a delayed effective date of September 1, 2022. Read the Bill »


Bill Has Passed


01/11/2022Prefiled and ordered printed; offered 01/12/22 22104056D
01/11/2022Referred to Committee on General Laws
01/19/2022Impact statement from DPB (HB444)
01/21/2022Assigned GL sub: Subcommittee #4
01/25/2022Subcommittee recommends reporting (8-Y 0-N)
01/27/2022Reported from General Laws (22-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
01/31/2022Read first time
02/01/2022Read second time and engrossed
02/02/2022Read third time and passed House BLOCK VOTE (98-Y 0-N)
02/02/2022VOTE: Block Vote Passage (98-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
02/03/2022Constitutional reading dispensed
02/03/2022Referred to Committee on General Laws and Technology
03/02/2022Senate committee, floor amendments and substitutes offered
03/02/2022Reported from General Laws and Technology with substitute (12-Y 3-N) (see vote tally)
03/02/2022Committee substitute printed 22107153D-S1
03/04/2022Passed by for the day
03/04/2022Impact statement from DPB (HB444S1)
03/07/2022Constitutional reading dispensed (38-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
03/08/2022Read third time
03/08/2022Reading of substitute waived
03/08/2022Committee substitute agreed to 22107153D-S1
03/08/2022Passed by for the day
03/09/2022Read third time
03/09/2022Passed by temporarily
03/09/2022Passed by for the day
03/10/2022Read third time
03/10/2022Passed by temporarily
03/10/2022Reading of amendments #1, #2 waived
03/10/2022Amendments #1, #2 by Senator Petersen agreed to
03/10/2022Reading of amendment #3 waived
03/10/2022Amendment #3 by Senator Petersen agreed to
03/10/2022Engrossed by Senate - committee substitute with amendments HB444S1
03/10/2022Passed Senate with substitute with amendments (25-Y 15-N) (see vote tally)
03/10/2022Senate substitute with amendments agreed to by House 22107153D-S1 (97-Y 0-N)
03/10/2022VOTE: Adoption (97-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
03/21/2022Bill text as passed House and Senate (HB444ER)
03/21/2022Impact statement from DPB (HB444ER)
03/21/2022Signed by President
03/22/2022Signed by Speaker
03/22/2022Enrolled Bill communicated to Governor on March 22, 2022
03/22/2022G Governor's Action Deadline 11:59 p.m., April 11, 2022
04/11/2022G Approved by Governor-Chapter 597 (effective 9/1/22)
04/11/2022G Acts of Assembly Chapter text (CHAP0597)

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