OPINION: Dominion Faces the Consequences of its Actions (Richmond Times Dispatch)

Wednesday, February 22nd, 2023

Read the Richmond Times Dispatch opinion piece by Albert Pollard, published February 19, 2023 here. If you are unable to reach the linked page, a pdf is below.

Sneaky Tactic to Reduce VEC Backlog

Friday, February 17th, 2023

Thousands of unemployment claimants may find today that their unemployment appeals are officially dismissed. In a move to wipe out more than a quarter of its backlog of almost 93,000 appeals, the Virginia Employment Commission (VEC) sent out notices alerting claimants that nearly 26,000 appeals – some years old – were filed late. The agency […]

Reimagining Virginia’s Mobile Home Parks

Thursday, February 16th, 2023

Over 350,000 Virginians live in Mobile Home Parks. According to the Department of Housing and Urban Development, mobile homes are the largest source of non-subsidized affordable housing in the U.S. At a time when, according to JLARC, over 900,000 Virginia households pay more than they can afford for their housing (53% are renters, 47% owners), […]

Important News for SNAP Recipients

Thursday, February 16th, 2023

Thousands of Virginia Children Risk Losing Health Insurance

Wednesday, February 15th, 2023

URGENT ALERT re: VEC Appeals

Tuesday, February 14th, 2023

 

2023 Crossover Update: Housing Legislation

Friday, February 10th, 2023

2023 Crossover Report_Housing Legislation

A Win for Under-Served Communities Harmed by Local Zoning Decisions

Friday, February 10th, 2023

The Supreme Court of Virginia has ruled that Hanover County residents can sue over the Wegman’s Distribution Center slated to open near their property. A Hanover Coumty Circuit Court judge threw the case out earlier, sayng the residents didn’t have legal standing to sue the Hanover Board of Supervisors for their approval of rezoning and […]

Save Children, Save Money: Support Improved Compensation for Attorneys for Low-Income Parents

Thursday, February 2nd, 2023

SUPPORT Budget Amendment 44 #2s (Edwards): High-quality family legal representation has been proven to improve outcomes for children in foster care – without compromising safety.  Virginia pays court-appointed counsel for parents at the lowest rate of any state: there hasn’t been a raise in 23 years.  Judges say they can’t even find lawyers to take these cases; […]

2023 Budget Amendments: Tell the Virginia General Assembly that Vulnerable Virginians Need Medical Coverage

Thursday, February 2nd, 2023

VPLC encourages Virginians to contact lawmakers and ask them to support Senate Budget Amendment item 308 #16s and House Budget Amendment item 304 #12h.   These proposals are not an expansion of Medicaid eligibility. They simply eliminate unnecessary and burdensome processes, benefiting both administrators and consumers.  Senate Finance & Appropriations Committee/ Health & Human Resources […]

FACT SHEET: Increase SNAP Minimum Benefit for Seniors

Monday, January 30th, 2023

Senate Item 341 #1s & House Item 346 #2h | NGF $1.1M; GF $20.4   Increase the minimum amount of SNAP benefits available to eligible individuals 60+ years of age from $23 to $48/month. This will help to offset the impact of the end of pandemic-related SNAP allotments and the impact of escalating food prices for […]

Five Ways to Address the Virginia Employment Commission’s First Level Appeals Backlog   

Tuesday, January 24th, 2023

By Pat Levy-Lavelle, Legal Aid Justice Center and Flannery O’Rourke, Virginia Poverty Law Center The Virginia Employment Commission (VEC) currently has a backlog of more than 96,000 first level appeals of unemployment decisions. The persistence of this backlog directly harms workers and employers, who (on average) must wait a whole year for an appeal hearing. […]

When Virginia fails to provide meaningful legal representation to parents, it’s rural, low-income, and Black families who are torn apart.

Monday, January 23rd, 2023

Author: Anna Daniszewski/VPLC Legal Fellow Impressive reporting from Cardinal News this week shows the crisis of parents’ legal representation in Virginia. Services providers for children and even a county attorney – the person who brings child welfare cases against parents – agree: children suffer the consequences when parents have “paltry legal support.”  When parents have […]

2023 Budget Amendments: Support these Investments in Affordable Housing

Friday, January 20th, 2023

Item 114 #12h (Delegate McQuinn)/Item 114 #27h (Delegate Coyner)/Item 114 #7s (Senator Locke)/Item 114 #9s (Senator McClellan): $90.1M to establish and fund the Virginia Housing Stability Fund 3-year pilot program that will provide long-term rental assistance to low-income households. Will provide assistance to 5,000 rent burdened households with incomes at or below 50% Area Median […]

2023 Budget Amendments: Support these Studies & Model Policies

Friday, January 20th, 2023

Item 114 #36h (Delegate Carr)/Item 118 #1s (Senator Ebbin): $500,000 ($200,000) for DHCD to conduct a comprehensive statewide housing needs assessment every five years. By regularly assessing Virginia’s housing needs, the Commonwealth will be well equipped to develop a statewide plan to meet the demand for housing.   Item 114 #1h (Delegate Maldonado)/Item 163 #1s […]

PRESS RELEASE: Virginia Ratepayer Protection Alliance Urges General Assembly to Oppose “Virginia Electric Utility Regulation Act”

Friday, January 20th, 2023

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE    Virginia Ratepayer Protection Alliance Urges General Assembly to Oppose “Virginia Electric Utility Regulation Act”  Utility-backed legislation is bad for ratepayers, erodes regulatory oversight  The Virginia Ratepayer Protection Alliance, an initiative launched in 2022 by the Virginia Poverty Law Center to advocate for millions of forgotten and over-charged ratepayers, has announced its opposition […]

FACT SHEET: Don’t Expand Low Quality Health Insurance Plans

Thursday, January 19th, 2023

Vote No on SB 1285 – Expanding Catastrophic Health Plans Vote No on SB 1336 – Expanding Short Term Limited Duration Plans Short Term Limited Duration (STLD) Plans Lack important consumer protections leading to higher, unexpected costs. They can: Charge more based on a pre-existing condition or gender, Cap what they pay for services, exposing […]

FACT SHEET: Protect Virginia’s Vulnerable Children

Thursday, January 19th, 2023

VPLC Opposes HB 1493  HB 1493 is the exact same bill brought before this subcommittee last year (where the vote was 6-1 to lay it on the table). This is the fifth year in a row I oppose this bill or a version of it. HB 1493 diminishes the “Best Interests of the Child” factors […]

FACT SHEET: Allow Localities to Enact Rent Stabilization

Friday, January 13th, 2023

Support HB1532 (Delegate Clark)/SB1278 (Senator Boysko)  Rents are on the rise:  Average rents in Virginia have increased over 10% in the past year and have risen even more drastically in certain localities. Rents in Henrico, Chesterfield, Spotsylvania, Hampton, Virginia Beach, and Bedford County increased 20%! Such severe increases in rent leads to unnecessary cost burdens […]

FACT SHEET: Make the Rental Application Process More Transparent

Thursday, January 12th, 2023

Support HB1651(Price) The Problem: A hidden aspect the housing affordability crisis is the cost on tenants applying for rental housing. Despite widespread use of tenant screening reports, there is no uniform screening criteria, which leaves tenants guessing whether they will qualify for a rental. Different landlords have varying rules about acceptable criminal records. While one […]

FACT SHEET: Community Enforcement of Health & Safety Rental Housing Laws

Thursday, January 12th, 2023

Support HB1650 (Delegate Price)    The Problem: There are apartment complexes in Virginia in such deplorable condition it’s unsafe to live there. Usually, tenants living in these deplorable conditions lack the means to enforce their rights to require their landlords to make necessary repairs. They don’t have access to attorneys, and they lack funds to […]