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GA Eliminates Local Option for Minimum Wage Floor in Public Procurements

The General Assembly has passed a bill that would prohibit local governments from requiring contractors to provide compensation or benefits above the state or federal minimum wage.

Democrats tried to adjust the bill to require a $10.10 minimum wage for public procurements, though Democratic Lieutenant Governor Ralph Northam ruled the amendments not germane to the original bill.

Republicans say the bill prevents the artificial inflation of the price of business contracts.

CTB Formally Abandons Petersburg-Suffolk Expressway

The Commonwealth Transportation Board has formally abandoned a 55-mile expressway from Southeastern Virginia to Petersburg that rankled environmentalists and cost taxpayers $250 million dollars that may never be recovered.

The original proposal was public-private partnership and a 55-mile high speed toll-road from Petersburg to Suffolk, paralleling US 460 and authorized by the McDonnell administration.

Now, it is a 17-mile improvement to 460 from Suffolk to Zuni. Nothing here.

Virginia Legislature Approves Loaded Shotguns in Cars, Reverses "Brass Knuckle" Vote

Both the House and Senate have passed a bill that would exempt concealed carry permit holders from local bans on carrying loaded shotguns in cars.

Supporters of the bill say it brings uniformity to the state code as gun owners travel between localities.

Republican Senator Tom Garrett of Buckingham is the bill’s patron.

Republicans rejected an amendment to require gun owners to keep their concealed carry permit with them if carrying a loaded shotgun, despite objections from Democrats.

The bill passed the House 62 to 34.

McAuliffe Signs "Uber" Bill

Governor Terry McAuliffe has signed into law a new regulatory system for Transportation Network Companies such as Uber and Lyft.

Users of smartphone apps like Uber and Lyft can enter their location and find a ride from an authorized driver in a matter of minutes in heavily traveled areas.

The legislation requires TNCs to screen drivers, including criminal background checks as well as driving history and status on the sex offender registry. The bill mandates that all TNC drivers be covered with a specific liability insurance policy.

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