The Assessment of State and Federal Mandates on Local Governments
“[A]ll agencies… shall conduct an assessment of all mandates imposed on local governments administered by the agency to determine which mandates, if any, may be altered or eliminated.” (Section 2.2-613, Code of Virginia)
“If an assessment reveals that such mandates may be altered or eliminated without undue threat to the health, safety and welfare of the residents of the Commonwealth, the Commission [on Local Government] shall so advise the Governor and the General Assembly…” (Section 15.2-2903, Code of Virginia)
The mandates are described in the Catalog of State and Federal Mandates on Local Governments, which the Commission updates annually. Executive Order 58, signed by Governor Kaine on October 11, 2007, governs the assessment of mandates by state executive agencies. EO 58 rescinded Executive Memorandum 1-98, which previously guided the assessment process.
“The Commission on Local Government shall distribute copies of all completed assessments received from state agencies to the Governor, the Secretary of Commerce and Trade, the Clerks of the House of Delegates and Senate, the Virginia Association of Counties (VACo) and the Virginia Municipal League (VML) and to other interested parties upon request.” (Section B(1)(f), EO 58)
In accordance with EO 58, the Commission annually establishes a mandate assessment schedule for state agencies. The schedule is subject to the Governor’s approval. The Commission publishes the schedule in the Virginia Register of Regulations (go to the General Notices section), distributes it to the agencies responsible for assessing the mandates, and posts it on this website. In addition, the Commission distributes the schedule to the Clerks of the House of Delegates and Senate, and to VACo and VML.
Only the following types of mandates are subject to assessment:
- New and newly identified mandates that have been in effect for at least 24 months;
- Existing mandates that have revised to the extent that they constitute new mandates and have been in effect for at least 24 months; and
- Other mandates that the Commission, after considering input from stakeholders, has decided should be reassessed.
Local governments are invited to submit their comments on mandates currently under assessment. Information on the fiscal impact of the mandates is particularly welcome. To view the assessment schedule and to find out how to submit comments, click here.