Citizens who were curious enough to answer a phone call from an “unknown name” and “out of area” phone number around 7p.m. Tuesday evening, were afforded the opportunity to remain on the line and participate in an interactive town hall meeting with Republican State Senator, Jill Holtzman Vogel. Senator Vogel represents citizens in Clarke, Fauquier, Frederick, Loudoun, and the City of Winchester in Virginia’s General Assembly set to convene its 2010 session in Richmond, Virginia this week.
The session allowed for interactive commentary regarding how to address the projected greater than $4 billion budget gap. Vogel gave a quick rundown of current bills before the General Assembly, including the opportunity for local school districts to set their own calendar; “fixing” the composite index used to determine funding allocations to districts instead of “freezing” it; land use, taxes, costs that affect local sheriff departments, among many others (see http://www.senatorjillvogel.com/legislation.htm).
Participants posed questions for Vogel and touched on subjects such as health care reform, firearms issues such as concealed weapons in locked containers within cars, and the proposed Virginia Firearms Freedom Act (a bill similar to that of the Montana Firearm Freedom Act, which has already passed in Montana and Tennessee). Vogel also affirmed her commitment to serving citizens with disabilities and the importance of finding creative ways for citizens with special needs to participate more fully in society, which in turn benefits everyone involved.
Vogel was firm in her commitment that she will NOT support legislation that will “increase the burden” on her constituents. The call was informative and it was later discovered that by contacting 540-341-7474 or e-mailing: firstname.lastname@example.org you may express an interest in participating in future town hall meetings with Senator Vogel.