Information from the VA ASLA Government Affairs Committee
ACTION ALERT: Invasive Plants Study Legislation
Virginia General Assembly House Joint Resolution 527
House Joint Resolution 527 (HJR 527) requests the Department of Conservation and Recreation, jointly with the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, to establish a work group to study the sale and use of invasive plant species. The resolution requests that the departments work with several state agencies, conservation nonprofits, and plant industry and agriculture groups to develop recommendations regarding statutory and regulatory changes intended to reduce or eliminate the sale and use of invasive plant species in the Commonwealth and promote the sale and use of native plants.
You can read the full text of the bill and learn about the bill patron and co-patrons here: HJR 527 https://lis.virginia.gov/cgi-bin/legp604.exe?ses=211&typ=bil&val=hj527
• ASLA Virginia supports HJR 527. The ASLA National Policy regarding invasive species indicates that ASLA Members should encourage nurseries, suppliers, and others in the plant propagation industry to grow and provide noninvasive plants. You can read the ASLA National Policy with Rationale by visiting ASLA National’s website within the member’s only section: ASLA Policies
• ASLA Virginia believes that invasive plant species:
o Adversely affect the integrity of ecosystems and cause both environmental degradation and economic harm; and
o May cause deterioration of native habitats and plant communities as well as damage to designed and managed ecosystems.
• Because invasive plant species reduce biodiversity and disrupt the healthy structure and function of both native and human ecosystems, invasive plants should not be introduced or used and, where already existing, steps should be taken to eradicate them.
In addition, ASLA Virginia’s Government Affairs Committee, with the support of our lobbyist, Jeff Palmore with ReedSmith, is working with the bill Patron, Delegate David Bulova, to amend HJR 527 to include a representative of ASLA Virginia on the study work group.
ASLA Virginia is requesting members to support HJR 527.
To support HJR 527 please either call or email your Senator and Delegate as soon as possible. Please consider using the Talking Points outlined above when communicating with your Delegate and Senator.
You can find your Delegate and Senator by clicking on this link: http://whosmy.virginiageneralassembly.gov
Please contact Rob McGinnis PLA FASLA, Member, Government Affairs Committee; 434-962-9110 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Advocacy is a critical component of VA ASLA. The Government Affairs Committee is dedicated to monitoring issues related to the practice of Landscape Architecture in the Commonwealth of Virginia and to protecting the health, safety, and well-being of the public and environment.
The Chapter regularly tracks legislation and works with a lobbyist to keep abreast of legislation that directly and indirectly pertains to the practice of Landscape Architecture in the Commonwealth.
Check for news here and find more information on the ASLA Advocacy Page.
VA ASLA would like to thank the following who have made a donation to the Advocacy Fund in 2020. Their support of the profession and the chapter is greatly appreciated.