Richmond, VA – Following the day known as “Crossover,” all eight of Delegate T. Scott Garrett, M.D.’s originally filed bills were accepted by the House of Delegates and now make their way to the Senate for consideration in the final days of the 2017 General Assembly Session. Crossover Day is the half-way point for the General Assembly Session. After this time, the House of Delegates may only vote on Senate bills and the Senate may only vote on bills from the House of Delegates. On Thursday, February 9, 2017, the House of Delegates will vote on their version of the amendments to the Fiscal Year 2016-18 state budget.

“As a member of the House Appropriations Committee, I am extremely proud of the work we produced. The House version of the budget is conservative, responsible, and structurally balanced, while also significantly investing in education, health care, and public safety. I look forward to supporting the House budget on Thursday and then working with my colleagues in the Senate to work out the differences between our budgets. Ultimately, we all want to make Virginia a better place to live, work, and raise a family,” said Delegate Garrett.

Delegate Garrett also serves as a member of the Senate Joint Resolution 47 Work Group (aka: “The Deeds Commission”) that was tasked with examining our state’s mental health system. As Chairman of the “Crisis and Emergency Services Work Group,” Delegate Garrett filed House Bill 1426. This bill seeks to expand on a pilot project from SW Virginia that allows for alternative transportation of individuals in mental health crisis. House Bill 1426 creates a work group to create a plan to take this model from SW Virginia statewide. “It is important that we treat individuals experiencing mental health crisis with respect and dignity. It’s also important that we understand the limitations our law enforcement agencies are experiencing. Finding alternative ways to transport individuals in mental health crisis in a dignified manner will benefit many Virginians,” said Delegate Garrett. 

Delegate Garrett also sponsored House Bill 2457 that seeks to take one step in the right direction of opening up the ability of our Health and Human Resources Agencies to share information across their departments for research purposes and efficiency monitoring. Individuals are often served by multiple state health and human resources agencies, but those agencies are unable to communicate with one another today. Delegate Garrett wants to see an end to information silos and the beginning of data sharing to increase customer services and cost efficiencies.

The other bills filed by Delegate Garrett this session include: House Bill 1505 (Perpetual Care Trust Funds), House Bill 1610 (Schedule I Drugs), House Bill 1767 (Telemedicine), House Bill 1768 (VA Retirement System), House Bill 2415 (Election Ballots), and House Joint Resolution 744 (World Voice Day).

Delegate T. Scott Garrett, M.D. represents the 23rd District in the Virginia House of Delegates, which includes portions of Amherst County, Bedford County, and the City of Lynchburg.