Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Thoughts on the General Assembly

It's now been two weeks since the Virginia General Assembly convened for the 2013 Session. I'm sure you've heard about the controversy in the Senate earlier this week dealing with redistricting. It's certainly been the reigning news headline for the week and, if upheld, will impact many among our members. If nothing else, it clearly demonstrates how quickly things can change during Session.

There's also been quite a bit of attention on various transportation funding proposals being considered, especially Gov. Bob McDonnell's proposal (HB 2313) which has garnered a lot of support from various groups around the Commonwealth. Another high profile transportation proposal is that of Sen. John Watkins (SB 717).

Since I spend a significant amount of my time at the General Assembly attending the Finance Committee meetings for both chambers, and all the transportation bills involve changes to taxation, I have been able to sit in on a good bit of discussion. I cannot even begin to predict which proposal, if any, will prevail. The only thing I can say at this point is that there are a lot of very different, very strong opinions on the best solution.

The good news for CPAs is that our issues generally tend to be fairly non-controversial. Both bills to conform the Virginia tax code to the Internal Revenue Code for tax year 2012 (HB 2150 and SB 1241) are moving along in their respective chambers. We'll continue to monitor and communicate on the progress of these bills as they move along. Additionally, the Virginia Board of Accountancy's bill (HB 1959) to put in place a statute of limitations for filing complaints against CPAs and CPA firms is also moving along easily, and without opposition.

Continue to stay tuned to the VSCPA's 2013 Session Watch page and watch your inbox for our Session Watch e-newsletters for more detailed information on what we're working on the progress of legislation important to CPAs. As always, please let me know if you see any legislation you think we need to examine more closely, and don't forget to the keep your eyes open for the "Take Action" button on our advocacy communications as an easy way to get involved and have a voice in the process.

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