Yesterday (February 7) was Crossover Day in the Virginia General Assembly. This annual day of celebration for some, and sadness for others, marks a sort of halftime in the Virginia legislature
In technical terms “Crossover” is a deadline for action. It is the last day for a bill to pass out of the chamber in which it was introduced and move forward for consideration in the opposite chamber. In other words, a House bill must pass in the House of Delegates before it may be considered in the Senate, and vice versa. After crossover, the only bills each chamber may consider must have passed the other chamber. (As always there are exceptions, rules and procedures around any deadline, but these are rare).
Generally speaking crossover is celebrated because we have a much clearer idea of what is expected to pass and fail for the remainder of the session. The massive legislative workload has now been paired down, and Legislators can concentrate efforts on those issues that remain standing. For those whose legislation failed to advance, it is a day of mourning.
In 2023, approximately 2,250 bills and resolutions have been introduced across both the House and Senate of Virginia and every measure received its day in Committee in only 20 session days. After crossover, only about half of those bills are still viable (under 1,100 bills remain alive) with many of those still likely to meet partisan defeat as they move across the capitol to the opposite chamber.
So where are the Realtor® Bills?
Realtors® have been tremendously effective over the first half of the session by passing three of our priorities through both the House and Senate. While each bill still needs to pass the opposite chamber, our strategy of having identical “companion” bills filed in both the House and Senate means both Senators and Delegates are already on record supporting the bills and they should continuing passing with no opposition.
- The Resale Disclosure Act takes current disclosure language out of the POA, Condo, and Cooperative Acts and consolidates it within a new chapter entitled the Resale Disclosure Act and uses one term, “Resale Certificate,” for the disclosure information required to go from a seller to a buyer when a property is sold. HB 2235 and SB 1222 have passed the House and Senate.
- Legislation to modify the enforcement power of the Common Interest Community Ombudsman over continuing violations of common interest community associations, HB 1627 and SB 1042, has passed both the House and Senate unanimously.
- Our bill to add an additional 15 days to the timeframe a landlord has to provide an itemization of the damages and return a security deposit for the next year has also passed. HB 1542 and SB 891 both passed unanimously.
The Realtors® short-term rental legislation (aimed at exempting Realtor® managed properties from certain local restrictions) will head to the Virginia Housing Commission for study during the interim between sessions and is expected to come back in 2024.