The Landes Letter: August 1, 2017



It has been a busy summer and enjoyable summer so far. Yesterday, I had the pleasure of touring Vector Industries with Delegates Dickie Bell and Ben Cline and Augusta County Supervisor Wendall Coleman. I'd like to thank them and Vector Industries CEO Chrissy Johnston for a very informative visit. I always enjoy visiting with folks in the 25th District, and along with businesses, I've also visited State Police Offices, senior living facilities, and individuals' homes! I'll continue doing this all summer so I can learn about the issues you care about and receive input for potential legislation. Last month we learned of our budget surplus, this weekend the Commonwealth will enjoy a sales tax holiday, and in less than two weeks, we'll be having our 5th Annual Valley Business Summit. I hope you'll take a few moments to read more about these items below...

Budget Surplus


As Vice Chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, one of my most important duties as a member of the Virginia House of Delegates is helping to craft and pass a budget for the Commonwealth. I am especially pleased to announce that Virginia ended the fiscal year with a $132 million budget surplus. This is the direct result of the General Assembly’s conservative budgeting and responsible stewardship of your taxpayer dollars. While Washington continues to drown in debts and deficits, Virginia has produced five consecutive budget surpluses totaling over $2 billion.


Earlier this year, we faced a $1.5 billion deficit. But just as any family or business would do when faced with the same challenges, we made the difficult decisions and adopted conservative budget amendments to keep our spending in check and balance our budget. We remained committed to funding the core functions of government like K-12 education and public safety, and were able to provide pay raises to teachers, state police officers and sheriff’s deputies.


While we ended the fiscal year with a surplus, our economy continues to struggle. Virginia continues to lag behind the national recovery, and too many Virginians are struggling to make ends meat. We need to continue to find ways to promote economic growth and bolster our economy so all Virginians prosper. Economic development remains one of my top legislative priorities and I am committed to creating an environment where individuals and businesses can flourish!


Sales Tax Holiday


Virginia's sales tax holiday is this Friday, August 4th through Sunday, August 6th. During the sales tax holiday, you can buy qualifying school supplies, clothing, footwear, hurricane and emergency preparedness items, and Energy Star™ and WaterSense™ products without paying sales tax. Items that qualify include school supplies, clothing, footwear, hurricane and emergency preparedness products, and Energy Star™ and WaterSense™. You can learn more about the sales tax holiday, including detailed lists of qualifying items, here.

Save the Date: 2017 Valley Business Summit


I hope all of you small business owners will be able to join us for the 5th Annual 2017 Valley Business Summit on Monday, August 14, 2017 at the Blue Ridge Community College, located at 1 College Lane in Weyers Cave. The Summit, which is once again being hosted by Delegates Dickie Bell, Ben Cline, Tony Wilt and me, begins at 1:30 pm and will conclude at 4:30 pm. We are pleased to announce that Stephen Moret, President and CEO of the Virginia Economic Development Partnership will be this year's keynote speaker. The Summit is a great opportunity to network and discuss small business issues with elected officials and members of the business community. Please check back here for updates or click here to register for this year's Summit.


Atlantic Coast Pipeline/Mountain Valley Pipeline Meetings


Many of you have contacted me regarding the Atlantic Coast Pipeline and Mountain Valley Pipeline Projects. There are several upcoming public hearings that I would like to share with you. The Virginia Department of Environmental Quality will be holding three public hearings on the ACP and two public hearings on the MVP.  Whether you are in support or the pipelines, opposed to them, or simply want to become more informed, these meetings provide you with an opportunity to learn more about these projects. You may also learn more about the DEQ's water protection for pipelines here.


Atlantic Coast Pipeline 401 Certification Public Hearings


August 7, 2017

6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.

James Madison University
Festival Conference & Student Center - Grand Ballroom
1301 Carrier Drive
Harrisonburg, VA 22807


August 10, 2017

6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.

Longwood University
Jarman Auditorium
201 High Street
Farmville, VA 23901


August 14, 2017

6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.

Dinwiddie High School Auditorium
11501 Boisseau Road
Dinwiddie, VA 23841


Mountain Valley Pipeline 401 Certification Public Hearings


August 8, 2017

6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.

Radford University
Preston/Bondurant Auditorium
801 East Main Street
Radford, VA 24142


August 9, 2017

6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.

Chatham High School Auditorium
100 Cavalier Circle
Chatham, Virginia 24531


Virginia Department of Transportation Partners with Keep Virginia Beautiful to promote the Adopt-a-Highway Program


The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) has partnered with Keep Virginia Beautiful to help support the agency’s Adopt-a-Highway program. This agreement will allow Keep Virginia Beautiful to focus on engaging volunteers to participate in the program designed to beautify roads throughout the commonwealth and prevent litter. Keep Virginia Beautiful will promote the Adopt-a-Highway program through its website, social media platforms and public relations channels as well as the organization’s many external partners. Additionally, Keep Virginia Beautiful will educate the general public on the need, impact and benefits of an effective Adopt-a-Highway program.  


VDOT setup the Adopt-a-Highway program in 1988. Each year, nearly 18,000 Adopt-a-Highway volunteers collect more than 25,000 bags of waste along Virginia’s highways. It is estimated that these efforts save the commonwealth over $1.35 million that would have otherwise gone to clean up Virginia’s roads. Groups agree to adopt a two-mile stretch of highway in their community by picking up litter and recyclables at least twice a year for three years. In return, VDOT provides trash bags, vests, important safety information and highway signs that recognize the individual or group.  


Thanks to our VDOT employees for all the great work they do and to the Keep Virginia Beautiful program for its work to “engage and unite Virginians to enhance our natural and scenic environment” through five focus areas: litter prevention, waste reduction, recycling, beautification and environmental education. Please click here for more information on the Adopt-a-Highway Program and here for more information on Keep Virginia Beautiful.  


Neighborhood Knocks, County Fairs & Yard Signs


Throughout this summer and fall, I'll be knocking on doors across the 25th District. Thanks to those of you that have taken time to speak with me and share your thoughts on issues such as creating jobs, providing our students a world-class education, and working to provide the best heal care possible for the best price. If I've not been to your neighborhood yet, I hope to see you soon! If you're interested in joining us for one of our neighborhood knocks, please contact my Campaign Manager Patrick Stott by email at or by phone at (804) 385-6786. Please check my Facebook "Fan" page often to see where we'll be going next.


This week I'll be visiting the Augusta and Albemarle County Fairs. The Augusta County Fair runs from August 1st through 5th at the Augusta Expo located at 279 Expo Road in Fishersville. The Albemarle County Fair runs from August 3rd through 5th at the James Monroe's Highland located at 2050 James Monroe Parkway in Charlottesville. Finally, Rockingham County will be having its Fair on August 14th through 19th at the Rockingham County Fairgrounds located at 4808 S. Valley Pike in Harrisonburg. Fairs are a great place to spend time with friends and family and to enjoy local products, eat great food, and make new friends! Perhaps we'll see you there?


Lastly, I'd like to ask those of you that display yard signs at your homes and businesses if you'd be willing to display one of mine. Displaying a yard sign is one of the best and easiest ways to show your support. Please let me know if you'd like one of my signs by clicking here and we'll be sure to have one delivered to you.


In Case You Missed It:


The News Virginian: Vector Industries Seeks Legislative Help in Boosting Employment


WHSV: Lawmakers Visit Valley Company Amid Employment Legislation Concerns


Augusta Free Press: State Legislators Tour Vector Industries, Hear Pitch on Employment for Those With Disabilities


WCHV: The Joe Thomas Show


NBC 29: Delegate Steve Landes Visits Albemarle County on Senior Living Facility Tour


WHSV: Delegate Landes Visits Senior Living Facility in the Valley


The News Virginian: Landes Visits Nursing Homes to Get a Close Look at Elder Care


Republican Led-General Assembly's Conservative Budgeting Leads to $132 Million Surplus


The News Leader: At Waynesboro Event, FCC Chair Calls for Better Internet Connectivity in Rural Areas


The Daily News-Record: Along for the Ride - Lawmaker Joins State Trooper on the Job for a Day


WHSV: Delegate Steve Landes Rides Along With State Police in Rockingham County


Contact Us


My Legislative Director, Judy Wyatt, Communications Director, Will Wrobleski, and I are here to serve you. If you need help with a state government agency or issue, we can be reached by phone at 540.255.5335 or by email at Our address is Post Office Box 12, Verona, Virginia 24482.


Please visit my website at for my latest press releases and newsletters. Also, be sure to “like” my Facebook Fan Page or you can now follow me on Twitter @steve_landes by clicking the buttons below:

Thank you again for allowing me to serve as your Delegate.


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