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2017 Session Watch

 

Click on the topics below to learn more about legislation that could affect Virginia CPAs:

If you have questions or comments, contact VSCPA Vice President, Advocacy Emily Walker, CAE, at (804) 612-9428 or follow her at twitter.com/VSCPAEmWalker.

Tax conformity | Top

Bill number (Patron) Bill summary Position  Status 

HB 1521 (Ware)
SB 977 (Hanger)

Advances conformity with the federal tax code to December 31, 2016. The bill contains an emergency clause. 

 

 

 

HB 1521 passed the House on Jan. 19 and the Senate on Jan. 27. Gov. Terry McAuliffe signed it into law Feb. 3.

SB 977 passed the Senate on Jan. 24 and the House on Feb. 6. Gov. McAuliffe signed it into law Feb. 13.

 

Virginia Board of Accountancy | Top

Bill number (Patron) Bill summary   Position  Status 

SB 1019 (Barker)

Amends provisions governing the regulation of certified public accountants by the Board of Accountancy, including (i) clarifying that certified public accountants are subject to the continuing professional education requirements without regard to whether they use the CPA title when providing services to the public, (ii) prohibiting a certified public accountant from practicing under an expired license, and (iii) requiring that employment experience reported on a license application be verified by a licensed certified public accountant. The bill extends from three to five years the time for filing a complaint against an out-of-state certified public accountant or CPA firm. 

An amended version of SB 1019 passed the Senate on Jan. 27 and the House on Feb. 21. Gov. McAuliffe signed it into law March 13.

 

Tax amnesty | Top

Bill number (Patron) Bill summary   Position  Status 

HB 2246 (Jones)
SB 1438 (Norment)

Establishes the Virginia Tax Amnesty Program to be administered by the Department of Taxation (the Department) during the 2017-2018 fiscal year for not less than 60 nor more than 75 days, as determined by the Tax Commissioner. The Program will be open to any taxpayer that is required but has failed to file a return or to pay any tax administered by the Department. All civil or criminal penalties assessed or assessable and one-half of the interest assessed or assessable, resulting from nonpayment, underpayment, nonreporting, or underreporting of tax liabilities will be waived upon payment of the taxes and interest. For purposes of implementing the Program, the Department is exempt from the project management and procurement oversight of the Virginia Information Technologies Agency. 

HB 2246 passed the House on Feb. 2 and the Senate on Feb. 10. Gov. McAuliffe signed it into law Feb. 20.

SB 1438 passed the Senate on Jan. 30 and the House on Feb. 15. Gov. McAuliffe signed it into law March 13.

 

Regulatory reform | Top

Bill number (Patron) Bill summary   Position  Status 

HB 1564 (Webert)

Creates the Division of Regulatory Management (the Division) within the Department of Planning and Budget to develop and maintain a state regulatory baseline of all current state regulatory requirements. The bill defines a regulatory requirement as any action required to be taken or information required to be provided in accordance with a statute, regulation, or policy in order to access government services or operate and conduct business. The bill also provides that after the regulatory baseline has been established, any subsequent regulatory requirement proposed by an agency that is not included in the initial state regulatory baseline is considered a new regulatory requirement and requires the approval of the Division before it may be enacted. The bill also creates the Red Tape Reduction Commission to review current state regulatory requirements and provide recommendations to the Governor and General Assembly on measures to reduce the baseline regulatory requirements.  

 

HB 1564 passed the House General Laws Committee with a substitute on Jan. 31. It was left in the House Appropriations Subcommittee on General Government and Capital Outlay on Feb. 8.

HB 1566 (Webert)

Establishes a statewide policy for the regulation of professions and occupations specifying criteria for government regulation with the objective of increasing opportunities, promoting competition, encouraging innovation, protecting consumers, and complying with applicable federal antitrust laws. In addition, the bill establishes a process for the active supervision of state regulatory boards pursuant to the U.S. Supreme Court decision in North Carolina State Board of Dental Examiners v. Federal Trade Commission, in which the Court held that a state regulatory board that includes active market participants among its board membership must be actively supervised by the state in order for such board and its members to be entitled to immunity for federal antitrust violations. The bill also (i) creates the Division of Supervision of Regulatory Boards in the Office of the Attorney General to be responsible for the active supervision of regulatory boards and (ii) establishes the position of professional and occupational regulatory analyst within the Division of Legislative Services to review legislation establishing or modifying an occupational regulation to determine whether the legislation meets the state policy of using the least restrictive regulation necessary to protect or preserve the public health, safety,and welfare. 

 

HB 1566, with a substitute, passed the House on Feb. 7. A further amended version passed the Senate on Feb. 17 and subsequently failed in the House.

HB 1731 (Ransone) Requires the Joint Commission on Administrative Rules, beginning November 1, 2017, and every two years thereafter, to conduct a review of the exemptions authorized by the Administrative Process Act (APA). The bill also requires agencies having APA exemptions, beginning August 1, 2017, and every two years thereafter on or before August 1, to submit a written report to the Joint Commission on Administrative Rules, which report includes the date the exemption was enacted, a summary of the necessity for the exemption, and a summary of any rule or regulation adopted pursuant to the exemption in the immediately preceding two fiscal years, if any. The bill provides that in the event that an agency having an exemption fails to submit the report required, the Joint Commission on Administrative Rules shall recommend to the Governor and the General Assembly that such agency's exemption be discontinued. The bill also requires general notice of the provisions of this requirement to be posted on the Virginia Regulatory Town Hall and published in the Virginia Register of Regulations by the Joint Commission on Administrative Rules to advise agencies of their obligations under the bill.    HB 1731, with a substitute, passed the House on Feb. 7. A further amended version passed the Senate on Feb. 21 and the House on Feb. 24. Gov. McAuliffe signed it into law March 20.
HB 1790 (Lingamfelter) Requires agencies to develop regulations in the least burdensome and intrusive manner possible and provides guiding principles for the development, adoption, and repeal of regulations. The bill also requires each agency to establish a schedule over a ten-year period for the review of all regulations for which the agency is the primary responsible agency. The schedule shall provide for the annual review of at least 10 percent of an agency's regulations by July 1 of each year. Under the bill, the Governor will submit an annual report containing the findings of the regulation reviews by August 1 of each year to the chairmen of the standing committees of the House of Delegates and the Senate.    HB 1790 passed the House on Feb. 6 and the Senate on Feb. 16. Gov. McAuliffe vetoed it March 24 and the House sustained the veto April 5.
HB 1821 (Yancey) Creates the Division of Regulatory Management (the Division) within the Department of Planning and Budget to develop and maintain a state regulatory baseline of all current state regulatory requirements. The bill defines a regulatory requirement as any action required to be taken or information required to be provided in accordance with a statute, regulation, or policy in order to access government services or operate and conduct business. The bill also provides that after the regulatory baseline has been established, any subsequent regulatory requirement proposed by an agency that is not included in the initial state regulatory baseline is considered a new regulatory requirement and requires the approval of the Division before it may be enacted. The bill provides that approval shall only be granted if, among other things, the total number of regulatory requirements for the requesting agency is either kept at the regulatory baseline for the agency or reduced. The bill contains technical amendments.    HB 1821 was left in a House General Laws subcommittee Feb. 8.
HB 1937 (Heretick) Establishes a statewide policy for the regulation of professions and occupations specifying criteria for government regulation with the objective of increasing opportunities, promoting competition, encouraging innovation, protecting consumers, and complying with applicable federal antitrust laws. In addition, the bill establishes a process for the active supervision of state regulatory boards pursuant to the U.S. Supreme Court decision in North Carolina State Board of Dental Examiners v. Federal Trade Commission, in which the Court held that a state regulatory board that includes active market participants among its board membership must be actively supervised by the state in order for such board and its members to be entitled to immunity for federal antitrust violations. The bill also creates the Division of Supervision of Regulatory Boards in the Office of the Attorney General to be responsible for the active supervision of regulatory boards.     HB 1937 was stricken from the docket in a House General Laws subcommittee on Jan. 31.
HB 1943 (Peace) Requires the Department of Planning and Budget (DPB), when conducting economic impact analyses, to provide an opportunity for business or other entities affected by the proposed regulation to comment on the anticipated economic impact of the proposed regulation. The bill also requires DPB to consider the comments and include them in the economic impact analysis. The bill contains an emergency clause.    An amended version of HB 1943 passed the House on Feb. 7 and the Senate on Feb. 16. Gov. McAuliffe signed it into law March 13.
HB 2221 (Cline) Creates the Joint Subcommittee to Evaluate Professional and Occupational Licensing Requirements of the various regulatory boards within the Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation. The bill sets out the membership of the Joint Subcommittee and enumerates its powers and duties. The bill also provides that to assist the Joint Subcommittee in carrying out its powers and duties, the General Assembly shall adopt a schedule for its timely review of the statutory and regulatory professional and occupational licensing requirements of the regulatory boards within the Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation. The schedule adopted shall require that no less than 20 percent of such licensing requirements be reviewed annually. The bill states that the General Assembly may delegate this function to the Joint Commission on Administrative Rules.    HB 2221 was left in the House Appropriations Committee on Feb. 8.
HJ 614 (Ransone) Directs the Joint Legislative Audit and Review Commission (JLARC) to conduct a two-year study of the Virginia Administrative Process Act exemptions. In its study, JLARC is directed to (i) assess whether exemptions for agencies, boards, commissions, and authorities are justified or should be discontinued or modified; (ii) assess whether criteria and a process should be established for determining if requests for exemptions should be granted; (iii) assess the extent of public participation and economic impact analysis provided as part of rulemaking conducted by exempt agencies, boards, commissions, and authorities; (iv) review other states' processes and criteria for exempting state agencies, boards, commissions, and authorities from the rulemaking process; and (v) review other issues and make recommendations as appropriate.    HJ 614 was tabled in the House Rules Committee on Jan. 26.
SB 922 (Petersen) Provides that certain powers of the Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation, the Department of Health Professions, and health regulatory boards and certain requirements of persons regulated by such entities apply, inclusively, to permits as well as licenses, certifications, and registrations and to holders of permits as well as holders of such licenses, certifications, and registrations.    SB 922 passed the Senate on Jan. 17 and the House on Feb. 16. Gov. McAuliffe signed it into law March 13.
SB 1431 (Reeves) Provides that when the Department of Planning and Budget conducts an economic impact analysis of a proposed regulation it must provide an opportunity for input from affected businesses or other entities to which the proposed regulation would apply. The bill also entitles an adversely affected small business as defined in subsection A of § 2.2-4007.1 to judicial review of compliance with the regulation.    SB 1431, with a substitute, passed the Senate on Feb. 3 and the House on Feb. 17. Gov. McAuliffe signed it into law March 13.
SB 1449 (Chase) Creates the Division of Regulatory Management (the Division) within the Department of Planning and Budget to develop and maintain a state regulatory baseline of all current state regulatory requirements. The bill defines a regulatory requirement as any action required to be taken or information required to be provided in accordance with a statute, regulation, or policy in order to access government services or operate and conduct business. The bill also provides that after the regulatory baseline has been established, any subsequent regulatory requirement proposed by an agency that is not included in the initial state regulatory baseline is considered a new regulatory requirement and requires the approval of the Division before it may be enacted. The bill also creates the Red Tape Reduction Commission to review current state regulatory requirements and provide recommendations to the Governor and General Assembly on measures to reduce the baseline regulatory requirements.    SB 1449, with a substitute, passed the Senate on Feb. 7 and the House General Laws Committee on Feb. 14. It was left in the House Appropriations Committee on Feb. 21.
SJ 295 (Vogel) Grants to the General Assembly the authority to review any administrative rule to ensure it is consistent with the legislative intent of the statute that the rule was written to interpret, prescribe, implement, or enforce. The amendment provides that after such review, the General Assembly may approve or reject, in whole or in part, any rule as provided by law and that the approval or rejection of a rule by the General Assembly shall not be subject to veto by the Governor.    SJ 295, with a substitute, passed the Senate on Feb. 7 and the House on Feb. 20.
SJ 311 (Carrico) Grants to the General Assembly the authority to review any administrative rule to ensure it is consistent with the legislative intent of the statute that the rule was written to interpret, prescribe, implement, or enforce. The amendment provides that after such review, the General Assembly may approve or reject, in whole or in part, any rule as provided by law and that the approval or rejection of a rule by the General Assembly shall not be subject to veto by the Governor.    SJ 311 was incorporated into SJ 295 on Jan. 31.

Other Topics | Top

The VSCPA and volunteer members are in the process of identifying additional bills that may of interest to Virginia CPAs. The VSCPA has not taken positions on these bills, but is monitoring them for informational purposes. Check back for a list of bills the VSCPA is monitoring.

HB 1790 is under discussion in a House General Laws subcommittee.
HB 1790 is under discussion in a House General Laws subcommittee.