Employment; covenants not to compete, low-wage employees (HB 1792)
Co-Patron – I co-patroned this bill to prohibit an employer from entering into a covenant not to compete with any of its low-wage employees. The measure declares that covenants not to compete entered into by an employer and a low-wage employee are contrary to public policy and are void and unenforceable. The measure defines a low-wage employee as one whose average weekly earnings are less than the average weekly wage of the Commonwealth.
Small businesses; parental leave tax credit (HB 2533)
Chief Patron - Advocating for an economy that works for all types of families is not just part of the job, it is a part of my own story. As a single, working mom, I know what it means to juggle the expectations of a workplace, and the home, in a system that was not designed for working parents like me. These experiences drove me to sponsor this bill to create an income tax credit for a portion of the salary or wages paid by small businesses to full-time employees while on leave for the birth or adoption of a child.
Protecting our State with Cyber Security
Cybersecurity; care and disposal of customer records, security for connected devices (HB 2793)
Chief Patron - As a cybersecurity specialist, I know the importance of keeping our communities safe, which is why I brought HB 2793, a bill to the floor that would have required companies to give notification when a data breach has occurred. This would directly impact companies that create and connect more than 500 devices that connect to the Internet, and collect personal information. Think of a GPS, fitbit, alarm system, or even your heating register within your home – these can be hacked without your knowledge. Currently for these devices, there is no law in place that requires companies or manufacturers to report when their products are breached or their collected data is compromised. This bill would require companies that create said products to follow current state data breach notification criteria and to properly dispose of personal data collected. This would carry a penalty if they should fail to report a breach. I am committed to protecting consumers from unseen threats in the cyber-space we utilize daily. Your safety in cyberspace is my priority.
Protection for minors in Digital services (HB 2535)
Chief Patron - I introduced this bill that requires the operator of a digital service (example – Facebook, Instagram, Twitter) to allow minors to request to remove content or information posted on the digital service permanently. This bill also prohibits a digital service (examples mentioned above) from directly targeting or advertising products that minors are prohibited from buying.
Virginia Information Technologies Agency; cybersecurity task force created (HB 2519)
Chief Patron - As a cybersecurity specialist, I brought a bill to the floor to create a cybersecurity task force to assist the Chief Information Officer (CIO) of the Virginia Information Technologies Agency. The aim of the task force would be to develop policies, standards, and guidelines applicable to the Commonwealth's executive, legislative, and judicial branches and independent agencies for assessing security risks, determining the appropriate security measures and performing security audits of government electronic information.
VITA; required information security training program for state employees (HB 2534)
Chief Patron - The world of technology is constantly transforming. This is why it is crucial for state employees to have the resources they need to stay up to date on security training programs. I sponsored this bill to require the Chief Information Officer of the Virginia Information Technologies Agency (the CIO) to develop and annually update a curriculum and materials for training all state employees in information security awareness and in proper procedures for detecting, assessing, reporting, and addressing information security threats.
Protecting the Environment
Environmental Justice Advisory Council; established, report (HB 2696)
Co-Patron – I co-patroned this bill, which establishes the Environmental Justice Advisory Council, consisting of 13 members, to advise the Governor on environmental justice in the Commonwealth through equitable development, implementation, evaluation, and enforcement of environmental laws, regulations, policies, and practices.
Supporting Military Families
Disabled Veteran's State Museum Passport; established (HB 2518)
Chief Patron - This bill creates a Disabled Veteran's State Museum Passport program for veterans of the United States Armed Forces with a service-connected disability rating of 50 percent or higher that entitles the bearer to enter state museums and other cultural institutions without the payment of a parking or admission fee.
General Services, Department of; disposition of surplus materials (HB 2161)
Chief Co-Patron – I was proud to help carry this bill, which requires the Department of General Services to permit surplus materials to be sold, prior to public sale or auction, to (i) service disabled veteran-owned businesses and (ii) veterans service organizations.
Virginia Military Survivors and Dependents Education Program; eligibility (HB 2685)
Co-Patron - I was happy to be a sponsor of HB 2685 to extend the benefits of the Virginia Military Survivors and Dependents Education Program to the spouse or child of a veteran with at least a 90 percent permanent, service-related disability. My father served in the US Airforce for over twenty-five years, and as the daughter of a veteran, I understand first-hand that it is not just the service members who dedicate their lives to our country, but it is also their families. I will always put forth legislation granting access to the resources our military families deserve.