2017 Puller Institute

2017 Puller Institute

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Check out our Puller Institute program! Great for students and young leaders in the 36th District community.   



Avoid Election Day Lines!

By Nadine Slocum

Avoid election day lines by voting absentee! Click here to learn how and apply!

Meet Senator Surovell

Meet Senator Surovell

Meet Senator Surovell

Get to know Senator Scott Surovell and find out why and how he's fighting for Mt. Vernon's fair share.

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  1. Press Releases
  2. News Articles
  3. The Dixie Pig Blog


Senator Surovell and Delegate LeMunyon Introduce Legislation to Reverse Supreme Court FOIA Decision  






January 12, 2016





December 31, 2015


Senator-Elect Surovell Introduces Legislation Limiting Predatory Lending


More information: Nadine Slocum, Legislative...



****For Immediate Release*****October 22, 2015

More Information: Megan Howard, 703.850.8618




October 20, 2015




***For Immediate Release*****October 5, 2015

More Information: Megan Howard, 703.850.8618


News Articles

2016 Articles- 

10/10/2016 - Alexandria spews 11 million gallons of raw sewage into the Potomac each year - The Washington Post
10/7/2016 - Mount Vernon: Friends of Dyke Marsh Celebrate 40th Anniversary - The Alexandria Connection 
10/3/2016 - Virginia DEQ requests more ground water monitoring for Possum Point Coal Ash Ponds - The Richmond-Times Dispatch 
10/1/2016 - Policy Change Could Cause Rise of Lethal Injection Costs in Va. - NBC29
9/16/2016 - Alexandria sends raw sewage mixture into the Potomac - WUSA9
8/25/2016 - U.VA., other universities have stockpiled billions of dollars in reserves - The Cortez Journal 
8/23/2016 - School board seat open to anyone temporarily - Prince William Times 
8/10/2016 - Ball's in the school board's court - Prince William Times
8/8/2016 - UVA's $2.3 billion fund dwarfs Virginia's own cash reserves - Campus Reform 
8/7/2016 - Doughtery - Without Dragas' whistleblowing, the University of Virginia community would be in the dark - The Virginian-Pilot 
8/4/2016 - Virginia Attorney General weighs in on Prince William School Board Appointment - Inside NOVA
8/1/2016 - In Virginia, thousands of cars are illegally registered with out-of-state plates - The Virginian-Pilot 
8/1/2016 - The Sordid Ways Death-Penalty States Obtain Execution Drugs - VICE
7/31/2016 - Blue Catfish, the new snakehead? - Prince William Times
7/13/2016 - Senator Scott Surovell Receives Fourth Environmental Award of 2016 - The Patch 
7/13/2016 - Brentsville Battles Heads to AG - Prince William Times
7/8/2016 - Attorney general considers school board appointment - InsideNOVA
7/1/2016 - Your Right to Know About Government - The News & Advance 
6/22/2016 - Environmental Groups digs into Dominion's coal ash - Chesterfield Observer 
6/9/2016 - Water-safety testing levels at heart of coal ash dispute - The Richmond-Times Dispatch
6/1/2016 - Mount Vernon Letter to the Editor: More action needed against litter - The Mount Vernon Gazette 
5/28/2016 - Tests of private wells on Possum Point turns up toxins - InsideNOVA
5/17/2016 - Potomac Riverkeeper Network Honors Congressman Gerry Connolly and Virginia State Senator Scott Surovell with "Protector of the Potomac" Award - Blue Virginia
5/16/2016 - Scalia Law School at GMU: Higher Ed Council to Sidestep Council - Fairfax City Patch
5/12/2016 - Poll finds 87 percent of Virginians concerned over insurance mergers - Richmond Times Dispatch
5/9/2016 - Bipartisan Group of Legislators Call on Commissioner Cunningham to Ensure Transportation, Accountability in Anthem-Cigna, Aetna-Humana Mergers - Blue Virginia 
4/28/2016 - Center asks Virginia Supreme Court to Make Public Auto Title-Loan Records - The Center of Public Integrity
4/22/2016 - Virginia OKs Amendment to Maintain Confidentiality of Execution Drug Providers - Nonprofit Quarterly  
4/21/2016 - General Assembly passes Governor McAuliff Death Penalty Secrecy Plan - The Virginian-Pilot 
4/21/2016 - AG Herring OKs governor's proposal to acquire lethal injection drugs in secret - The Virginian-Pilot
4/12/2016 - Gov. McAuliffe amends electric chair bill to allow secretly made drugs for lethal injection - The Virginian-Pilot
4/12/2016 - Virginia Governor pushes for secrecy of execution drugs - Boston Globe
4/12/2016 - Shoppings Carts, Tires, Junge Gym Pulled from Creek Clean up - The Mount Vernon Patch 
4/12/2016 - McAuliffe rejects electric chair bill, proposes secrecy for makers of lethal drugs - Culpeper Star Exponent
4/11/2016 - Surovell: Virginia deserves hearing on planned insurance mergers - The Richmond Times Dispatch 
4/10/2016 - Governor Has Until Midnight to Decide if Virginia will Bring Back the Electric Chair - VICE
4/10/2016 - Do Virginia Legislators have an edge in court? - The Daily Press
4/9/2016 - 2016 Little Hunting Creek Cleanup - The Alexandria Patch
4/7/2016 - Democratic Lawmakers Oppose Renaming Law School for Scalia - WTOP
4/6/2016 - Virginia Democrats criticize plan to name law school after Antonin Scalia - The Washington Post
4/4/2016 - Gov. McAuliffe signs bill to reverse anti-FOIA ruling by Supreme Court of Virginia - The Virginian-Pilot 
3/20/2016 - Petula C. Metzler to become Prince William Judge - The Washington Post
3/17/2016 - Deplorable state of Metro system "entirely predicable result of Conservative movements 'Starve the beast' approach to government - Blue Virginia
3/16/2016 - Environmental official received gifts from Dominion - WRIC
3/14/2016 - Has Dominion's Political Power Clouded the Fight Over Coal Ash? - WAMU 88.5
3/11/2016 - Electric Chair OK if no execution drugs available, Virginia Legislature Decides - The Times-Picayne 
3/7/2016 - Bills target illegal immigration - The Reading Eagl
3/8/2016 - Editorial: Bringing Back the Electric Chair - The Fairfax Connection 
3/8/2016 - McAuliffe will sign public-records law but may still seek changes - The Washington Post 

3/7/2016 - A fight over open government in Virginia - The Washington Post
3/7/2016 - McAuliffe Backs Off On FOIA Bill, Hopes Virginia Lawmakers Will Still Keep Death Chamber Secret - WAMU 88.5
3/6/2016 - House panel blocks equal rights amendment - CBS 6
3/5/2016 - In Va., lawmakers want to tighten stance on illegal immigration - The Washington Post 
3/5/2016 - Mount Vernon Letter: Mainstream Representation - Mount Vernon Gazette
3/4/2016 - Gov. Terry McAuliffe agrees to sign open government bill without his rewrite - The Roanoke Times
3/4/2016 - McAuliffe backs off push for sweeping changes to FOIA bill - The Richmond-Times Dispatch
3/3/2016 - Why McAuliffe Is At Odds With The Virginia General Assembly On FOIA - WAMU 88.5
3/02/2016 - How McAuliffe could veto a public records bill without vetoing it - The Virginian-Pilot 
3/01/2016 - Springfield: Education, Economy Top Concerns - Local Kicks 
2/28/2916 - Va. Senate approves religious freedom bill - Washington Blade
2/26/2016 - State Sen. Scott Surovell Urges Fairfax to #advertisethedime; Fairfax Supervisor Jeff McKay Calls That "Extremism" - Blue Virginia 
2/26/2016 - Senate committee revives, advances controversial immigration enforcement bill - Augusta Free Press 
2/25/2016 - Mount Vernon Letter: Wrong Side of the Issues - Mount Vernon Gazette
2/24/2016 - Only the Good Die Young: A Mid-Way Review of Virginia Climate and Energy Bills - The Energy Collective
2/23/2016 - Suit challenging Virginia voter ID law continues in federal court - The Richmond-Times Dispatch 
2/22/2016 - Virginia lawmakers move to let all judges carry concealed firearms - The Washington Times
2/21/2016 - Week #6: Electronic Textbooks, Sunshine and Other Bills Move - Greater Alexandria Patch
2/19/2016 - Oil-spill fine, if any, to be negotiated between Virginia and Dominion Power - The Washington Post
2/18/2016 - Widewater State Park's state funding is up in the air - The Free Lance-Star
2/17/2016 - Virginia Lawmakers Take Action to Prevent Government Behind Closed Doors - WAMU 88.5
2/15/2016 - State officials may be using Ricky Gray execution to bring back electric chair - The Virginian Pilot
2/9/2016 - Sanctuary cities bills pass State Senate - Augusta Free Press
2/4/2016 - Bill to require Dominion to move coal ash to landfill fails - Richmond Times Dispatch
2/3/2016 - Commentary: Fire Compromise, Equal Rights Amendment Pass - The Connection 
2/1/2016 - General Assembly Notebook: Restitution bill for Davey Reedy moves to full committee - The Roanoke Times
1/29/2016 - State senator to talk Metro to Woodbridge, Dominion coal-ash at town hall - Inside Nova
1/27/2016 - Effort to Remove Outdated Adultery Laws Fails in Virginia - Reason.com 
1/21/2016 - VDOT will review miserable commute after blizzard ends - Potomac Local 
1/18/2016 - Will this be the year that ex-gay therapy gets banned in Virginia? - GayRVA
1/18/2016 - My Committees and Legislative Agenda Part II - Greater Alexandria Patch
1/18/2016 - Notebook: Mandatory minimums, adultery and EMPs - Daily Press
1/18/2016 - 
Bills would ban conversion therapy for minors in Virginia - CBS 6 
1/18/2016 - Senate panel kills bill to decriminalize adultery - Richmond Times Dispatch 
1/15/2016 - Restitution sought for pardoned Roanoke man - The Roanoke Times
1/15/206 - State OK's Dominion plan to drain coal ash ponds into James , Potomac rivers - CBS 6
1/12/2016 - Surovell Previews 2016 Legislative Agenda - Greater Alexandria Patch
1/11/2016 - Loupassi teams with Surovell to help rehabilitated felons get jobs - Richmond Times Dispatch
1/11/2016 - Dominion's Plans to Drain Coal Ash Ponds Raising Concern - Bay Journal 
1/10/2016 - Battle over Dominion coal-ash ponds heads to state water board this week - The Washington Post
1/8/2016 - FOIA may be coming at General Assembly - Daily Press
1/7/2016 - Mount Vernon: Gearing Up for 2016 Challenges - The Connection 
1/2/2016 - Legislation takes aim at short-term loans - The News & Advance 
1/1/2016 - Va. lawmaker seeks to crack down on 'predatory' lenders

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2015 Articles- 

12/31/2015 - Senator-Elect Surovell Introduces Legislation Limiting Predatory Lending - Blue Virginia 
12/29/2015 - Concern grows for well water near Possum Point power plant - Inside Nova 
12/27/2015 - What's Ahead in the State Legislature - Greater Alexandria Patch 
12/23/2015 - Lawmakers split after Virginia many out-of-state concealed carry permits - Inside Nova
12/23/2015 - Amid Scrutiny, Car-Title Lenders Refuse To Allow Release Of Their Reports - WAMU 88.5
12/10/2015 - Incoming senator steps to the plate for ERA - Inside Nova
12/8/2015 - Hearing set on Dominion plan to drain coal-ash ponds into Potomac - Inside Nova
11/25/2015 - Virginia Lawmakers Target 'Predatory' Car Title Lenders - WAMU 88.5
11/25/2015 - Column: Importance of Virginia's Port - The Connection
11/25/2015 - Lawmakers: Give the public more time to study coal-ash pond plan - The Washington Post
11/19/2015 - New Zoning Rules for Payday, Car Title Loan Companies - Greater Alexandria Patch
11/19/2015 - Open Government Advocates Wary of Supreme Court Decision - WAMU 88.5
11/18/2015- After Court Ruling, FOIA Council Looks to Shore Up Public-Records Laws - Richmond Times Dispatch
11/2/2015 - Mount Vernon: Bucknell Receives New Laptops - The Connection
10/31/2015 - About Scott Surovell - Mount Vernon Gazette
10/31/2015 - Letter: Much Done, Much to Do - The Connection
10/29/2015 - State Senate District-36: Scott A. Surovell Q and A - The Connection
10/27/2015 - Surovell Supports Medicaid Expansion, Tough on Car Title Lenders - Potomac Local
10/23/2015 - Bridging the Tech Gap: Students at Elementary School in Fairfax County Get Free Laptops - NBC 4
10/20/20145 - Va. woman uses online absentee ballot to vote - WUSA 9
10/14/2015 - State's online absentee ballot request ready to go - The Daily Press 
10/9/2015 - Video: 36th District Senate Debate in Dumfries - Potomac Local 
10/7/2015 - Execution Records appeal leads to ruling limiting Virginia FOIA disclosures - Reporters Committee 
10/7/2015 - Use of electronic signatures for VA. absentee-ballot requests causes alarm - The Washington Post 
10/3/2015 - In the Fast-Cash World Of Virginia Car-Title Lenders - WAMU 88.5
10/2/2015 - Guest Commentary: Predatory Lending is Out of Control in Virginia - The Falls Church News-Press 
10/1/2015 - Legislation expected to address state Supreme Court FOIA ruling - The Daily Press 
9/25/2015 - Fairfax County NAACP hosts 70th Freedom Fund Awards - The Connection 
9/24/2015 - Virginia's contempt for transparency - The Washington Post  
9/23/2015 - Opinion: Virginia Supreme Court's recent ruling a troubling victory for secrecy - The Daily Press
9/18/2015 - Execution details shielded in Virginia - Washington Post 
9/17/2015 - Manuals for prisoner executions can be kept secret, Virginia Supreme Court rules - Richmond Times-Dispatch 
9/13/2015 - Video: AG Mark Herring, Del. Scott Surovell Speak Out Against Predatory Lending - Blue Virginia
9/12/2015 - Va. Attorney General Mark Herring vows to crack down on more title loan companies - The Washington Post 
9/4/2015 - More access to clean power for Virginians - The Potomac Local 
9/3/2015 - Column: Warming to Solar Power - The Alexandria Connection 
9/2/2014 - Surovell is Endorsed by Sierra Club - The Alexandria News 
8/27/2015 - Video: Scott Surovell Debates Empty Chair as Republican Opponent Refuses to Show - Blue Virginia 
8/24/2015 - Dumfries, Haymarket urge transit rail studies - The Potomac Local
8/23/2015 - Why resist renewable energy - Bluefield Daily Telegraph
8/19/2015 - Va. Democrats may have won one. But can they win in November? - The Washington Post 
8/12/2015 - Mount Vernon: Rights Restored - The Alexandria Connection
7/30/2015 - Arlington Sun Gazette editorial: What to do about Confederate names? - Inside Nova
7/23/2015 - Mount Vernon: Not Willing To Wait - Mount Vernon Connection  
7/21/2015 - Will Virginia's General Assembly be called in for redistricting this summer? - The Potomac Local 
7/20/2015 - Governor would sign bill to change Jefferson Davis highway's name - Inside NOVA
7/18/2015 - Virginia seeks to regulate drones - The News Leader
7/15/2015 - Drone airspace: A legal frontier - The Washington Post
7/8/2015 - Mount Vernon Column: Prompt Action Needed To Keep Potomac River - The Alexandria Connection 
7/3/2015 - In Northern Va., environmentalists concerned about disposal of coal ash - The Washington Post
7/1/2015 - Mt. Vernon: Surovell Fundraiser Photo - Alexandria Gazette
6/29/2015 - In Okla., Supreme Court upholds Virginia execution drug - The Daily Press
6/19/15 - Editorial: Data on executions shouldn't be hidden - The Fredericksburg Free Lance Star
6/16/15- Will there be a special election next year? - Potomac Local 
6/16/15- Opinion/Editorial: Clarity on executions is essential - The Daily Progress 
6/10/15- Mount Vernon: Victors Emerge from Democratic Primary - The Virginia Connection
6/10/15- Democrats select nominees in Mason, Mount Vernon - Fairfax Times 
6/9/15- Polls open until 7 p.m. for Virginia primary that includes several key races - The Washington Post 
6/9/15- What's at stake in Tuesday's Virginia Primary - The Washington Post
6/9/15- Primary Tuesday for 44th District House of Delegates Seat - The Kingstowne-Rose Hill Patch 
6/3/15- Virginia Supreme Court hears arguments about executions, security - The Roanoke Times
6/3/15- Va. Supreme Court hears FOIA issues in executions case - The Daily Press
6/2/15- Virginia Justices to Hear Execution Secrecy Case - The Roanoke Times
5/27/15 - Editorial: Voting, June 9th - The Virginia Connection
5/27/15- Surovell focused on Metro, Medicaid and Teachers - Potomac Local 
5/25/15- Va. Taxpayers May Bear Coats Redistricting Fight - The Newsleader 
5/23/15- Virginia Redistricting Lawsuits Could Cost Taxpayers Big Bucks - The Washington Post - 
5/19/15- Column: Major Paving Operations Set to Start this Summer in 44th District - The Virginia Connection
5/19/15- 2015 Amundson Institute Students Present Policy Proposals - Alexandria News
5/7/15- Embrce the Past: Hundreds of Mount Vernon Grads Set to Return for 75th Anniversary - Virginia Connection News Papers
04/30/15 - Mount Vernon: Festive Start to Fort Hunt Pitch Season - Virginia Connection
04/30/15- More Money for Route 1 - Virginia Connection Newspapers
04/26/15- Fairfax recieves $8 Million for traffic relief on Route 1 and two other roads - The Washington Post
04/26/15- Coal ash pond at Possum Point in Quantico pose risk for residents - Potomac Local 
04/22/15- Column: Veto Session on Ethics, Voter ID, Government Surveillance - The Virginia Connection
04/19/15- Thomas Jefferson Class of 2019: 70% Asian, 1.6% Black - The Virginia Connection 
04/18/15- Video: Jim Moran, Toddy Puller, Jeff McKay Speak at Joint Scott Surovell/Paul Krizek Office Opening - Blue Virginia 
04/16/15- Delegate Surovell, Friends of Little Hunting Creek, and The Alice Ferguson Foundation Net 8,500 Pounds of Trash - Alexandria News
04/09/15- Mount Vernon: Surovell, Krizek Deliver Petition on Route 1 Widening - The Virginia Connection
04/08/15- Surovell, Krizek Submit Petition to Widen Route 1 - The Mount Vernon Patch 
03/26/15- Mount Vernon - The Magic of Giving Back - The Virginia Connection 
03/24/15- Legislators Questions Role of Alcohol Agents After U-Va Arrests - The Washington Post
03/19/15- Column: A Top 20: A 2015 Legislative Summary: Part 2 - The Virginia Connection
03/19/15- Surovell Kicks Off Senate Campaign - The Virginia Connection 

03/18/15- Shining a Light on Virginia's Death Row - WVTF Public Radio
03/17/15- Scott Surovell Kicks Off Campaign for State Senate Seat - The Mount Vernon Patch  
03/13/15- Column: A 2015 Legislative Summary: Part 1 - The Virginia Connection 
03/12/15- Democrats Hold Mardi Gras Straw Poll in Alexandria - The Virginia Connection
03/11/15- Democratic Legislators Zero In to Urge 4 McAuliffe Vetoes - The Falls Church News-Press
03/08/15- Results in from Mt. Vernon Democrats Straw Poll - The Greater Alexandria Patch 
03/06/15- Scott Surovell Announces Campaign Kickoff - The Woodbridge Patch 
03/05/15- 2015 General Assembly Comes to a Close - Mount Vernon Gazette
03/05/15- Six House Members Urge McAuliffe to Beef Up Ethics Bill - Daily Press
03/04/15- Six House Democrats Vote Against Ethics Bill - Richmond Times Dispatch
03/03/15- Critics say Virginia Ethics Bill Won't Prevent Another Scandal - WDBJ
02/25/15- McAuliffe Officials try to get Va. House to Change Vote on Lethal Injection - Washington Post
02/24/15- House Rejects Bill to Keep Execution Drugs Secret - Virginia Pilot
02/21/15- Delegate to Run for Senate Seat that includes Stafford County - Free Lance Star
02/18/15- Virginia Lawmakers Pass Gun Transport Bill for Concealed Carry Holders - Washington Times
02/18/15- Legislative Notebook: Bake Sale Details Divide Senate, House - Daily Press
02/17/15- Day after vote, House of Delegates Reverse Course on Brass Knuckles Bill - Lynchburg News and Advance
02/14/15- In a Virginia Lately Used to Legislative Fireworks, a Bewildering Calm Prevails - Washington Post
02/12/15- Mount Vernon and West Potomac High School Students Attend Amundson Institute - Mount Vernon Gazette
02/11/15- Senate, House Pass Senate Overhauls - Richmond Times Dispatch
02/11/15- VA House and Senate Unhappily Pass Ethics Reform, Governor Awaits Deal - Washington Post
02/11/15- Prevent Secrecy in Elections - The Daily Cavalier
02/10/15- VA House to Vote on Bill Forcing Herring to Take Cases - Virginia Pilot
02/06/15- Asset Forefeiture Reforms Pass House - Free Lance Star
02/06/15- Del. Scott Surovell Hosts Fifth Annual AMundson Institute - Patch
01/27/15- Virginia Senate Subcommittee Sticks By Gay Marriage Ban - Metro Weekly 
01/26/15- Scott Surovell Running for Virginia Senate Seat - Patch
01/25/15- Express Lanes Operator May Be Breaking the Law - WTOP
01/23/15- Political Jockeying in Mount Vernon - Mount Vernon Gazette
01/23/15- Fines on Express Lanes are Too Punitive - WTOP
01/21/15- Dominion Virginia Power Planning Virginia's First Large Scale Solar Project -Augusta Free Press
01/20/15- 125-Acre Solar Power Farm Planned Near Remington - Fauquier Now
01/20/15- Virginia Lags Behind on Equality Measures - Metro Weekly
01/20/15- Scott Surovell Announces Run for State Senate - Mount Vernon Gazette
01/19/15- Delegate Surovell & Delegate Hope Introduce Bills to Ensure Consumer Protection - Blue Virginia
01/19/15- Ethics is a key issue for 2015 - Virginia Business
01/18/15- Lawmakers Seek to Restrict Zones - Rappahanock News
01/17/15- Surovell to Announce Run for State Senate - Washington Post
01/07/15- Route 1 Transit Study, Jeff Todd Way, Wegmans among Top Events and Developments in Mt Vernon - Mount Vernon Gazette
01/06/15- VA Attorney General Says State Authorities Don't Have to Hold Migrants for U.S. Agency - Washington Post
01/01/15- Coming Up Next - Richmond Times Dispatch
01/01/15- Richmond Council Presses for Changes to Grand Larceny Threshold - Richmond Times Dispatch

2014 Articles

12/25/14- Rise in Loans Linked to Cars is Hurting Poor - New York Times
12/19/14- Widening Continues On US 1 Route 1 in Mt. Vernon - Mount Vernon Gazette
12/13/14- The Rising Cost of Felony Creep - Richmond Times Dispatch
12/11/14- County Pushes for More School State Funding - Fairfax Times
11/26/14- Mount Vernon Schools Hosts Virginia Secretary of Education - Mount Vernon Gazette
11/17/14- Lawmaker, Father Benefit from Tax Credit - Richmond Times Dispatch
11/12/14- For Legislators, a Generous Benefit - Daily Press
11/06/14- US 1 Study is Done - Mount Vernon Gazette
10/30/14- Moving Forward - Mount Vernon Gazette
10/28/14- Investigation Forces Changes to Massive EZ-pass on 495 Express Lanes - Fox 5
10/24/14- Judging When Its OK to Elect a Legislators Relative to the Bench - Daily Press
10/23/14- Recommendations for Route 1 - Mount Vernon Gazette
10/16/14- US 1 Transit Study: Time to Speak Up - Mount Vernon Gazette
09/11/14- Transit-Oriented Apartments Open - Mount Vernon Gazette
08/04/14- A Legislator/Trial Lawyer's Thoughts on the McDonnell Trial - Daily Press
06/25/14- VA Precedents Slowing Down Governor McAuliffe's Efforts- WVTF Radio
06/05/14- Turf Fields Begin - Mount Vernon Gazette
05/29/14- McAuliffe Vetoes Bipartisan Ethics Bill - Mount Vernon Gazette
05/28/14- McAuliffe's 'mystifying' Veto - Watchdog
05/15/14- Keeping Youth Happy and Healthy- Mount Vernon Gazette
05/08/14- Low- or No-Fuel Cars Pose Issue for States - Stateline
05/05/14- States Mull Fees on Green Vehicles - Stateline
05/01/14- Del. Scott Surovell Endorses Patrick Hope in 8th Congressional District Primary - Patch
04/23/14- Virginia Lawmakers Resume Stalemate - Roanoke Times
04/16/14- Going Green? Cost is a Primary Concern - WVTF Radio
04/06/14- Bus Rapid Transit, Light Rail, and a Longer Yellow Line are Choices for Route 1 - Greater Greater Washington
03/05/14- Surovell, Krupicka Launch Medicaid Expansion Petition - The Daily Press 

03/05/14- Lawmakers Step Up Fight as Budget Deadline Approaches - NBC
02/27/14- General Assembly: Homeowners Association Bill Hits Skids - Daily Press 
02/26/14- House Passes Sentate's Ethics Overhaul Bill - Roanoke Times
02/26/14- Surovell, Ebbin Claim Victory in Repeal of Hybrid Tax - Patch
02/22/14- Virginia Ethics Reform is Riddled with Loopholes - Washington Post
02/21/14- Virginia Approves New Lethal Injection Drug - Washington Post
02/07/14- Virginia House Votes 95-0 on Proposal to Freeze Credit of Minors - Patch
02/06/14- Mediation Centers Ask for More Money to Fund Alternative to Litigation - Roanoke Times
02/03/14- Surovell says 85 percent of states have stopped using their electric chairs - Politifact
01/28/14- Electrocution is Wrong Direction - Virginia Pilot
01/23/14- Lawmakers Trying to tighten Virginia's Ethics Rules - Virginia Pilot
01/23/14- Va. House of Delegates Votes to Repeal Hybrid Tax - Washington Post
01/22/14- Indictments Bring Calls for New Ethics Rules - USA9
01/21/14- Virginia Lacks Drugs for Lethal Injections; No Executions Pending - Richmond Times-Dispatch
01/20/14- Virginia Lawmakers Kill Two Pro-LGBT Bills - Washington Blade
01/20/14- Virginia's Hybrid Tax on Path to Repeal - Del Ray Patch
01/20/14- Va. Assembly Tables Bill to Repeal Gay Marriage Ban as Lawsuits Move Forward - LGBTQnation
01/17/14- For Two-timing Spouses, Harder Times May Be Ahead - Virginia Pilot
01/16/14- House Bill Would Alter DUI Consequences - ABC Richmond
01/14/14- Virginia House Subcommittee to Consider Marriage Ban Repeal Bill - Washington Blade
01/13/14- Del. Surovell, Senators Puller and Ebbin to Host Legislative Town Hall- Alexandria Patch
01/13/14- Efforts to Repeal Virginia Marriage Amendment Blocked- Washington Blade
01/09/14- Legislators Head to Richmond, Address Upcoming Session- Virginia Connection
01/08/14- Virginia Lawmakers Look to Strengthen Ethics Rules- Fairfax Times

2013 Articles

12/15/13- General Assembly Bills Range from Casinos to Coyotes- Roanoke Times
12/02/13- Closing the Digital Divide- WUSA9
11/19/13- Sparks Fly Again Over Transportation Funding- The Free Lance Star
11/05/13- Alexandria Residents Waste No Time at the Polls Tuesday- Patch
10/17/13- Delegates Want to Nix Hybrid Fee- Roanoke Times
10/16/13- Surovell, Krupicka and Lopez Oppose AccessUVA Cuts- Patch
10/16/13- Three Virginia Delegates Oppose AccessUVA Cuts- Cavalier Daily
08/22/13- Shedding Sunshine on the Secret World of Regulation in Virginia- Mount Vernon Gazette
07/29/13- Virginia Chapter of the Sierra Club Honors Del. Scott Surovell- Patch
07/14/13- Del. Scott Surovell says Governor McDonnell Should Resign, or Be Forced Out- Washington Post
07/13/13- Del. Surovell Calls on Gov. McDonnell to Resign, Implies Impeachment- Blue Virginia
07/05/13- A Tax on Virtue? Ebbin, Surovell Target Hybrid Tax- Patch
07/03/13- Distracted Driving Can Be Reckless- Mount Vernon Gazette
07/02/13- Surovell, Ebbin Seek to Repeal Hybrid Tax- Patch
06/06/13- Reflecting on Recent Legislation- Mount Vernon Gazette
05/17/13- Risk of Corruption in Virginia- 8News
05/08/13- Raising Healthy Children with Healthy Minds- Mount Vernon Gazette
05/08/13- Hollin Meadows Elementary to Participate in National Bike to School Day- Patch
05/07/13- It's Time for Cinco de Surovell- Patch
05/07/13- Del. Scott Surovell Hosts Little Hunting Creek Cleanup- Patch
05/16/13- Thousands of Pounds of Trash Removed from Little Hunting Creek- Mount Vernon Gazette
04/19/13- Candlelight Vigil for Gun Violence Victims- Alexandria Gazette
04/16/13- Thousands of Pounds of Trash Removed from Little Hunting Creek- Mount Vernon Gazette
04/14/13- Virginia Begins Issuing Debit Cards- Washington Post
04/09/13- Del. Scott Surovell Hosts Little Hunting Creek Cleanup- Patch
04/02/13- Shopping Carts Return to Watershed Area- Patch
03/28/13- What to Call the Corridor: Is it Route 1 or Richmond Highway? - Mount Vernon Gazette
03/27/13- Officials Say Reduced Hybrid Tax Still Unfair- Patch
03/26/13- Governor Amends Transportation Funding Bill- Fairfax Times
03/18/13- Hybrid Owners Take Tax Fight to the Governor- Richmond Times Dispatch
03/18/13- Del. Scott Surovell, Sen. Adam Ebbin to Deilver Hybrid Tax Petitions to Gov. McDonnell- Patch
03/12/13- Del. Scott Surovell's End of Session Report- Patch
03/12/13- Extend Metro to Centreville, Woodbridge and Fort Belvoir? Connoley and Moran Put Idea on Table- Washington Post
03/07/13- State Budget Advances on Medicaid- Mount Vernon Gazette
02/28/13- U.S. 1 Funding Secured and Transportation Deal- Mount Vernon Gazette
02/27/13- Sen. Adam Ebbin and Del. Scott Surovell create web site to oppose hybrid car tax- Examiner
02/26/13- Surovell, Ebbin Launch NoHybridTax.com- Patch
02/20/13- The Final Stretch: Progress on U.S. 1, Transportation Negotiations and School Reform- Patch
02/19/13- Del. Scott Surovell, Sen. Adam Ebbin, Sen. Toddy Puller M eet Constituents in Mt. Vernon- Patch 
01/29/13- A Week of Sunshine, Online Textbooks and Car Title Lenders- Patch
01/27/13- Virginia Cohabitation Law from 1877 May Finally Be Overturned- Examiner
01/14/13- VA Lawmakers Kill Proposal to Repeal Virginia Gay Marriage Ban- Washington Blade
01/18/13- Shopping Carts Push Politician to the Brink- Patch
01/16/13- Shopping Carts Abandoned in Creek Prompt Bill in Virginia- NBC 4
01/14/13- Virginia House Subcommittee Kills Bill to Repeal Gay Marriage Ban- Metro Weekly
01/14/13- Transportation Solution Debate Begins in Richmond- Patch
01/10/13 Bill Would Make Texting While Driving a More Serious Offense- Patch
01/07/13- Virginians Should Billions in Tax Breaks Each Year- Virginia Pilot
01/02/13- A Look at the 2013 General Assembly Session- Patch

2012 Articles
12/23/13- Surovells Full Slate: Delegate Preps for 2013 General Assembly Session- Patch
12/06/13- Bipartisan Support for Texting-While-Driving Ban in Virginia- Washington Examiner
12/06/12- Surovel Proposes Stronger Texting while Driving Law- Patch
12/05/12 Bill would make texting from car wreckless driving- Washington Post
12/05/12 Advocates push for tougher texting while driving laws- Virginia Pilot
12/05/12 Bill would make texting from car wreckless driving- Washington Post
12/05/12- Proposed law would stiffen penalty for texting while driving- Washington Post
10/25/12- Eminent Domains Amendment's Costs- Mount Vernon Gazette 
10/23/12- Del. Surovell, Volunteers Remove Tons of Trash from Little Hunting Creek- Patch
10/29/12-Property Rights Amendment would put an onerous burden on local government- Washington Post
10/17/12- Obama, Romney Face Off in Second Debate- Patch
10/15/12- VA: Tax preference policy to haunt legislature- Watchdog
10/04/12- Commentary: Should Virginia Auction Off It's Ports?- Mount Vernon Gazette
9/28/12- Local Delegates Appear on New History Channel Show- Patch
9/13/12- Residents Light Up Meeting On Power Outages- Mount Vernon Gazette
9/12/12- Dominion Officials Discuss Derecho Outage, Line Burial- Patch
9/12/12- The Democratic National Convention: An Inspiring Experience- Patch
9/07/12- Delegate Diary: Democratic National Convention- Day 3- Patch
9/05/12- Should We Bury Our Power Lines?- Patch
9/03/12- Delegate's Diary: Democratic National Convention- Patch
8/27/12- Feds Approve Voting Law Changes- Mount Vernon Gazette
8/17/12- Residents Prefer Widen in Place options for Route 1- Patch
8/13/12- Democrat and Republican Officials Respond to Romney's VP Pick- Patch
8/15/12- Elected Officials Weigh in on Proposed Casino at National Harbor- Patch
8/06/12- Beacon for the Future- Mount Vernon Gazette
8/02/12- Improving U.S. 1 North of Fort Belvoir- Patch
7/18/12 Rising Hope UMC Launch New Restoration of Voter Rights Program- Patch
7/17/12 Route 1 Widening: Wait for Transit Study?- Mount Vernon Gazette
7/12/12- Partisan Games on Healthcare Hurt Mt. Vernon-Lee Community- Patch
7/05/12- 5 Lessons from the Derecho- Patch
7/02/12- New Virginia State Laws Went Into Effect Sunday- Patch
6/30/12- Breath device required for first-time DUI offenders- The Virginian Pilot
6/19/12- Officials Have High Hopes for Carl Sandburg Planetarium- Patch
6/18/12- Church Fights to Preserve Historic Cemetary- Patch
6/17/12- Gunston Hall Celebrates George Mason Day- Patch
6/15/12- New Fort Hunt Plans Up for Discussion- Patch
6/15/12- Fort Belvoir Traffic Hearing Draws Resistence- Baltimore Sun
5/30/12- Del. Surovell Leads Little Hunting Creek Cleanup- Patch
5/14/12- Mount Vernon's Woodlawn Stables Threatened by expansion of Route 1-Washington Post

5/14/12- Virginia lawmakers reject key budget amendments- Washington Post
5/13/12- Richmond Highway Plans Still in Question- WAMU
5/6/12- Delegate Surovell holds 3rd Annual Cinco de Surovell at Fort Hunt Park- Patch
4/30/12- Mount Vernon Council of Citizens Associations- Patch
4/27/12- Speak Out: More Independence for Localties?- Patch
4/26/12- The New State Budget Misses the Mark- Patch
4/19/12- Woodlawn Little League Kicks off 2012 Season- Patch
4/12/12- Help Cleanup Little Hunting Creek- Mount Vernon Gazette
4/12/12-TitleMax to Open in Cooper Center- Patch
4/10/12- Northern Virginia Delegate to Sponsor Cleanup- The Inlet
4/2/12- Teachers urge governor to veto VRS overhaul- Rappahanock News
3/30/12- Fort Hunt Residents Want Help for Paul Spring Intersection- Patch
3/29/12- Walt Whitman Celebrates 50th Anniversary- Mount Vernon Gazette
3/15/12- McDonnell urged to veto voting bills- Washington Post
Democrats urge GOP to use mortgage settlement to help homeowners- Washington Post
2/28/12- Morning Read: Senate Passes Controversial Voter ID Bill- NBC 4
2/27/12- General Assembly 2012: The legislative laugh factory- NBC 12
2/27/12- VDOT: Minimal Secondary Road Maintenance Over Next Two Years- Patch.com
2/27/12- County Hopes for Suburban Coalition in VA Legislature- Patch.com
2/17/12- Democrats Wary of 'Castle Doctrine' as Gun Bill Moves to Senate
- Williamsburg-Yorktown Daily
2/15/12- Virginia Commonwealth Transportation Board Steps Out of the Jazz Age- Mount Vernon Gazette
2/15/12- Northern Virginia Politicians Named for Obama Campaign's "Virginia Truth Team"
1/30/12- Cable Reports interview with Delegate Scott Surovell YouTube
1/28/12- Lawmakers Call for fix for Virginia Taxbreak System- The Virginia Pilot
1/25/12- Bills take aim at taxcode to improve accountability- Washington Times
1/19/12- 20 cent bag fee proposed in Virginia- WTOP
1/14/12- State Senators Puller, Ebbin and Delegate Surovell hold Mount Vernon Town Hall Meeting- Patch.com
1/10/12- Delegate Hopes to Boost Virginia's Gas Tax- WINA Radio
1/09/12- Va. delegate proposes increase to state gas tax- WTOP1/07/12- Potomac River May Lose a Friend: Virginia- Patch.com  

2011 Articles
12/26/11- Virginia Budget Omits Funds for Potomac River- Washington Times

12/22/11- Sunshine and Taxes: Virginia General Assembly to consider exposing the secret world of tax incentives- Washington Times
12/20/11- Transportation and Studies Underway for Route 1 Corridor- Patch.com
12/20/11-Virginia General Assembly Considers Tax Credit Transperancy- WAMU
12/9/11- Mount Vernon-Lee Chamber of Commerce Holds Holiday Awards- Patch.com
12/6/11- A Civics Lesson- Patch.com
11/29/11- Va.'s McDonnell proposes cuts to state agencies- Washington Times
11/24/11- Northern Virginia Politicians Reflect on "What I Am Most Thankful For"- Patch.com 
11/17/11- Localties Fear Impact of Proposed Constitutional Amendment- Sun Gazette 
11/02/11- Fairfax County Cheers $180 million in US funding for BRAC- Washington Post
11/01/11- Pentagon Grants Millions for Route 1 BRAC Improvements- Patch.com
10/21/11- Delegate Scott Surovell gets help from Senator Mark Warner- Patch.com
10/21/11- The Washington Post endorses Delegate Scott Surovell- Washington Post
10/21/11- Warner Campaigns for Democrats in Northern Virginia- Washington Post
10/17/11- Contributions Rolling in for GOP Challengers to Puller, Surovell- Patch.com
10/07/11- The Great Communicator- Patch.com
10/06/11- Elected Officials Rally to Save Pavillions- Connection Newspapers
9/28/11- Scott Surovell's Roots Run Deep in 44th District- Patch.com
9/26/11- Connolly Calls For Metro to Prince William County Summit- Patch.com
9/23/11- Under or Over?- Mt. Vernon Gazette
9/23/11- Fairfax County Looking for Revitalization- WAMU

9/12/11- Photos:Democrats Ice Cream Social- Patch.com
7/7/11- Rising Hope Mission Celebrates 15 Years- Connection
7/6/11- Tauxemont: A Community Ahead of Its Time- Fort Hunt Patch
6/25/11- Virginia League of Conservation Voters grades lawmakers on environmental votes, giving gold stars to several Northern Virginians- Washington Post
6/21/11- House Candidate Jack Dobbyn Seeks Change For Fairfax County- Fairfax Station Patch
6/15/11- Waynewood Patriots Day Ceremony Celebrates Civil Service, Honor- Fort Hunt Patch
6/15/11- Va. OKs billions in road funding- Washington Examine
6/15/11- A House Not Divided- Burke Connection
6/13/11- Local Legislators Call For Extension Of Blue, Yellow Line- Rosehill Patch
6/11/11- Torian Wants Rail to Woodridge- Woodbridge Patch
6/09/11- Va. Official Call For Extension of Metro's Blue and Yellow Lines- Washington Post
6/08/11- NoVa. pols to Metro: Map Should Plan For Future Line Extension- Washington Examiner
5/15/11- Terry McAuliffe's Green America: An Exclusive Interview- Huffington Post
3/29/11- Parents, Elected Officials For Full Day Kindergarden (video)- Fairfax Station Patch
3/24/11- AIDS Medication Program Gets Funding- Daily Press
2/28/11- Virginia Legislators Form Progressive Caucus- Fairfax Station Patch
2/28/11- FCPS Urges Governer to Veto Bill Mandating More PE Classes In School- Mount Vernon Patch
2/10/11- Surovell: McDonnell Transportation Plan Shortchanges Fairfax County- Fort Hunt Patch
1/9/11- Surovell Fundraiser Draws Local Supporters, Politicos- Fort Hunt Patch

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2010 Articles
12/31/10- 2011 Assembly session will be budget-driven- Fairfax Times
12/30/10- Governor’s plan doesn’t include any new judges- Virginia Lawyer's Weekly
12/20/10- New Law Targets Concussions in Student Athletes- Ft. Hunt Patch
12/20/10- Loophole: Missing word lets drivers challenge school bus law- WTOP.com 103.5
12/20/10- Senators, Congressmen Stress Urgency of Route 1 Funding- Mt. Vernon Patch
12/15/10- Bill to close loophole in school bus safety law- Fairfax Times/Virginia Statehouse News
12/6/10- Virginia Multiplex Prepares for Liquidation- WAMU 88.5
12/4/10- Virginia Democrats choose Brian Moran to lead party- The Washington Post
12/3/10- Officials Invite Comments on Belvoir Expansion and Route One- Mt. Vernon Patch
12/2/10- Multiplex BluesThe Mt. Vernon Gazette
11/23/10- Brain injury from fireworks show results in $4.75 million verdict- Dolan Media
11/17/10- Jury Awards Millions in Vienna Fireworks CaseThe Fairfax Sun Gazette
10/8/10- On U.S. 1 Localities Must Come TogetherThe Richmond Times-Dispatch
10/1/10- No to ABC Liqour PrivatizationThe Mt. Vernon Gazette
9/28/10- Sen. Puller, Del. Surovell Talk ABC Privatization at TownhallHuntington-Belle Haven Patch
9/28/10- Two Northern Va. Lawmakers Voice Skepticism On Liquor Plan At Town HallWAMU 88.5
9/16/10- Should Virginia Privatize Alcohol Sales?The Mount Vernon Gazette
9/9/10- Improving Our Justice System With TechnologyThe Mount Vernon Gazette
9/2/10- Governor Tours New Hope SheltersThe Mount Vernon Gazette
8/31/10- Va AG: Court clerks have the authority to record proceedings- The Washington Examiner
8/31/10- Va AG: Court clerks have the authority to record proceedings- WDBJ7.com
8/28/10- Cuccinelli decision on court devices raises staffing questionsCharlottesville Daily Progress
8/20/10- Atty. General opinion says Virginia clerks may record court proceedingsDolan Media Services
8/19/10- Senior's Concerns: Housing, TaxesThe Mount Vernon Gazette
8/4/10- VA governor wants law enforcement to enforce immigration lawsPrivate Officer Breaking News
8/4/10- McDonnell: State troopers could check legal statusThe News Leader
7/22/10- Pointing FingersThe Mount Vernon Gazette
7/19/10- State, Local Leaders At Odds Over Richmond HighwayWAMU 88.5
7/15/10- Virginia's Newest LawsThe Mount Vernon Gazette
7/15/10- US Senate To Vote on Bill with Route 1 Funding The Mount Venon Gazette
7/15/10- Supervisors Honor Local Volunteers, Activists The Mount Vernon Gazette
7/4/10- A fair shake for Fairfax's other business corridor The Washington Post
6/14/10- Mental Health Needs Grow, Funding Doesn’t The Mount Vernon Gazette
5/25/10- McDonnell unaware of reform chairman's past WTOP.com
5/21/10- Delegates want controversial appointee to resign WTOP.com
5/21/10- Time to Invest in Preschool The Mount Vernon Gazette
5/4/10- Oil spill doesn't change state's stand on drilling The Fairfax Times
4/15/10- Armed Resistance The Mount Vernon Gazette
4/15/10- Politicians Put General Assembly Session Behind Them The Mount Vernon Gazette
3/26/10- Cuccinelli's solo bid shifts spotlight to AG's office The Washington Examiner
3/9/10- Surovell’s Procurement Bill, H.B. 831 passes Senate AlexandriaNews.org
2/25/10- Mason Neck Park to Remain Open The Mount Vernon Gazette
2/20/10- Mesothelioma Lawsuit Alert: HB 629 prevents company from asbestos disease liability Health Care Industry Today
2/16/10- 36 legislators urge Mcdonnell to reverse LCI freeze WTOP 103.5 FM
2/13/10- Shorten School Year? Suffolk News-Herald
2/11/10- Health Units Win Political Backing The RoanokTimes
2/10/10- McDonnell: Winds, Low Temps 'Very Dangerous' WJZ 13 & The Associated Press
2/9/10 McDonnell directing more education money to N.Va. The Washington Post
2/9/10 Bill Shields Company From Asbestos Claims The Virginian Pilot
2/2/10 General Assembly Briefs for Feb. 2 Richmond Times Dispatch
1/28/10 Fighting for Education Funding The Mount Vernon Gazette (Also in the Mount Vernon Voice)
1/27/10 The State No One Wants to Be In The Mount Vernon Gazette
1/27/10 Surovell's Bills The Mount Vernon Gazette
1/21/10 Working on a Special Transportation DistrictThe Mount Vernon Gazette (Also in the MV Voice)

2009 Articles
10/26/09 Former Democratic Chairman Runs for Delegate The Mount Vernon Gazette
10/26/09 A Crucial Last Dash for Deeds Backers The Washington Post
10/25/09 Republicans see an opportunity to grab more seats in Va. House The Washington Post
10/24/09 Virginia's Lower House The Washington Post
10/20/09 Three throw their hats in ring for 44th District delegate seat The Fairfax Times
9/23/09 House Call: Slicin' and Dicin' the Sept. 15 Reports from The Washington Post's Virginia Politics Blog
9/9/09 Dems Ask Opponents to Repudiate McDonnell Thesis The Washington Post's Virginia Politics Blog
7/13/09 Surovell Hits Ground Running -- and Collecting The Washington Post's Virginia Politics Blog
6/30/09 Amundson Won't Seek Re-election The Mount Vernon Gazette
6/24/09 Amundson to Retire, Surovell to Run from The Washington Post's Virginia Politics Blog
2/12/09 Getting to Know... Scott A. Surovell from the Mount Vernon Gazette

  • Weekly Column: Vote “Yes” for FCPS Teachers' Salaries

    Weekly Column: Vote “Yes” for FCPS Teachers' Salaries

    The following is my column that will appear in the Mt. Vernon Gazette, Springfield Gazette, and The Mt. Vernon Voice in the week of October 20, 2016.
    Vote “Yes” for FCPS Teachers' Salaries

    When you vote on Tuesday, November 8, Fairfax County voters can vote for our schools by voting to allow a four percent tax on prepared restaurant meals.  Of the revenue generated by the tax, 70 percent is required to be dedicated to public schools and 30 percent to other county services, capital improvements and property tax relief.

    I support a meals tax because we need to strengthen our schools.  Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) are suffering from underfunding.  While state funds have increased by over 50 percent since the 2009 Great Recession, local funds, which represent 80 percent of our school system's budget, have risen only 20 percent and lagged investments made in Arlington and Alexandria.

    Funding shortfalls have serious consequences, the most significant of which is that FCPS teacher salaries are no longer competitive.  A mid-career FCPS teacher makes $20,000 less per year than one in Arlington or Montgomery Counties.  The FCPS average teacher salary is only $3,000 per year more than Prince William County's, $2,000 more than Loudoun County's and $800 more than Prince George’s County's.

    The result is that we are losing top talent and Fairfax County taxpayers are in effect training teachers and staff for the ultimate benefit of other jurisdictions as higher salaries lure them away. FCPS started this year with over 130 teaching vacancies for the first time in the system's history.  Who can blame someone for choosing a 20+ percent raise to support their family? 

    In addition, FCPS has a $2 billion capital backlog.  School renovations have been deferred.   The system has been growing by 120 classrooms of students per year and some students are sitting in trailers instead of well-equipped buildings.  In my 13 years as a FCPS student, I saw one trailer.  FCPS’ elementary school class sizes are now 35% larger than Alexandria’s and 13.7% larger than Arlington’s. 

    Also, FCPS cannot offer the same quality educational experiences of other jurisdictions.  All students in five Virginia counties are assigned their own personal computing devices – Henrico, Chesterfield, Albemarle, Alexandria, and Arlington.  One-to-one computing for FCPS costs $50 million and for now, is a pipe dream for FCPS. 
    It has not always been this way.  For many years, including when I was a FCPS student from 1976-1989, FCPS was the envy of all school systems in the state, the metro area and the nation.  Teachers began and finished their careers in FCPS.  Students at West Potomac, Fort Hunt, Groveton, Hayfield or Edison often shared the same teachers over decades. 

    Why a meals tax referendum? The Constitution of Virginia and our state laws do not allow all counties to enact meals taxes through Boards of Supervisors without prior voter approval.  In terms of tax options, state law effectively only allows Virginia counties to tax three things – real estate, personal property (cars) and business revenue (called “BPOL” taxes).  Fairfax County’s property tax is actually lower than Prince William and Loudoun Counties and is another choice for funding the schools' shortfall. 

    However, a four percent meals tax is equal to $0.04 of increased real estate taxes – the equivalent of $200/year on a $500,000 home.    A meals tax increase will reduce tax pressure on our elderly on fixed incomes who cannot pay higher real estate taxes.  Also, 30 percent of meals taxes are paid by non-county residents.  

    Alexandria, Arlington, Fairfax City, Falls Church and the towns of Vienna, Falls Church, Herndon and Clifton already have a meals tax – we are leaving money on the table. High quality schools help sustain home values for all of us.  New families often choose homes based on  school data.  Strong schools increase demand for homes. 

    Finally, investing in our children pays massive future dividends.  Public secondary and higher education is the bedrock of civilized democracies.  The core of high quality education is high quality teachers,  people who deserve to be paid as the professionals that they are and at salaries commensurate with their training, experience and importance.  Good salaries allow them to live in the community they serve.

    Vote yes on the meals tax.  You can reach me at scott@scottsurovell.org.  It is an honor to serve as your state senator.

  • Weekly Column: Your 2016 Ballot: Yes for Widows, No for “Right to Work”

    Weekly Column: Your 2016 Ballot: Yes for Widows, No for “Right to Work”

    The following is my column that will appear in the Mt. Vernon Gazette, The Mt. Vernon Voice and The Potomac-Stafford Local in the week of September 7, 2016.
    Your 2016 Ballot: Yes for Widows, No for “Right to Work”
    On November 8, you can vote on two state constitutional amendments that require voter approval, in addition to voting for President and U.S. Congress.  There are also local measures on the ballot in some counties.  
    One constitutional amendment is relatively non-controversial and would allow localities to exempt property owned by the widow of a killed-in-action first responder from real estate taxes.  Two years ago, Virginians approved similar treatment for the widows of killed-in-action soldiers.  I support giving our localities this authority and voted “yes."
    The second amendment is very controversial and very confusing as written on the ballot.

    In 1947, Virginia adopted a law commonly labeled a “right-to-work” law.  This law prohibits labor unions from negotiating contracts with employers that require all employees to join labor unions as a condition of employment.  This practice results in what is sometimes called a “union shop.” 
    No legislator has even introduced legislation to repeal this statute in at least three decades.  If they did, it would be a waste of time because it would not pass.  This might lead you to ask why is this on the ballot when has been Virginia law for almost 70 years and no one has tried to repeal it?  
    This proposal is part of a multi-state campaign to constitutionalize similar provisions and is organized nationally by a group called the American Legislative Exchange Council or ALEC.  ALEC is funded by various large corporations and think tanks and has advocated model laws to weaken environmental protections, promote mandatory voter identification and weaken firearm violence prevention laws.  Provisions along these lines are on the ballot in five states on November 8, 2016.
    I voted against placing this measure on the ballot as your Senator and voted “no” two weeks ago (I voted by mail).  
    Constitutions are fundamental governing documents that set forth fundamental rules of governance between people, branches of government and between different levels of government.  We do not put every policy in our state constitution for a good reason. For example, we do not put alcoholic beverage rules, the definition of murder, or speed limits in our state constitution.  
    The “right-to-work” proposal is also bad policy.  Workers in states with right-to-work laws earn 12.1 percent less than workers in other states, median household incomes are lower and fewer workers in right to work states have access to basic benefits like health insurance.  States with right to work laws spend 32 percent less on K-12 education than other states, have higher rates of workplace fatalities and have higher poverty and infant mortality rates.  Workers in these states also have fewer job protections.
    I hope you will join me in voting against this provision.  
    It is an honor to serve as your state senator.  You can email me at scott@scottsurovell.org if you have any feedback.