On Feb 7th, HB 2207 was defeated in the House, 48-Y 51-N. Download the spreadsheet indicating how your delegate voted. If you are so inclined and if your delegate voted against the bill, it may be worth a quick email to ask why. It will help inform our work as we move towards the next iteration of revision to current code. If your delegate voted for the bill, a note of thanks would also be a good gesture.
We will endeavor to revise our proposal and submit another bill to next year’s General Assembly. Stay tuned as we start planning for our next effort. If you would like more information on the 2023 process or are interested in participating in this effort, please send an email to the VHEAP Legislative & Governance Committee.
HB 2207 Information Technology Access Act was introduced to the 2023 General Assembly Session by Delegate Kathy Tran. Use this link to check back frequently as to the bill’s status.
Feb 7, 2023: HB 2207 was defeated in the House, 48-Y 51-N
Feb 3, 2023: Substitute version of the original bill in the House for the first read
Feb 1, 2023: Passed the full House Appropriations Committee (22Y-0N)
Feb 1, 2023: Passed the House Appropriations Sub-Committee: General Government and Capital Outlay (8Y-0N)
Jan 31, 2023: Assigned to the House Appropriations Sub-Committee: General Government and Capital Outlay
Jan 30, 2023: The bill was approved (16Y-6N) by the Communications, Technology and Innovation Committee to move to the House Appropriations Committee.
Archived video of the Jan 30 committee session (HB 2207 begins at 10:16:13 AM in the video stream)
Jan 19, 2023: Assigned to the Communications, Technology and Innovation Committee, scheduled to be heard on Jan 30.
Jan 11, 2023: HB 2207 Information Technology Access Act was introduced to the 2023 General Assembly Session by Delegate Kathy Tran. Use this link to check back frequently as to the bill’s status.
How A Bill Becomes A Law In Virginia
During the 2022 Virginia legislative session, Delegate Kathy KL Tran (District 42) submitted HB1264 to the General Assembly. This bill sought to address digital accessibility in the public elementary and secondary schools and was passed unanimously by both the House and Senate; however, it was sent to the Joint Commission on Technology and Science (JCOTS) for further study.
Because the intentions of this proposed bill duplicated the efforts already underway in the higher ed and the state agency sectors, Delegate Tran was contacted to see how VHEAP could assist in addressing the similarities between her proposed bill and state code already in place, the Information Technology Access Act.
This effort has been undertaken by the following members of the VHEAP Legislative & Governance Committee:
- Korey Singleton – GMU (Lead)
- Lori Kressin – Univ of Virginia
- Barbara Zunder – Univ of Virginia
- Mark Nichols – Virginia Tech
During fall 2022, several VHEAP members participated in the VHEAP Digital Accessibility survey and subsequent focus groups. Based on the information provided from the survey along with discussion within the groups and with outside experts, the committee presented the VHEAP Status of Digital Accessibility report to Delegate Tran. In addition, the report has been distributed to the JCOTS committee, members of the US Access Board, the NFB, the DOJ, and others who provided important information to assist with creation of this report.
Key recommendations from the committee are:
- Bring public elementary and secondary schools under the current Information Technology Access Act, thereby negating the requirement of a new law
- Establish Section 508 as the baseline technical standard, thus broadening the law from non-visual access only to include all disabilities
- Each entity will be required to designate a Digital Accessibility Coordinator
- Define an implementation strategy for entities to increase their level of digital accessibility
- Yearly reporting to the Secretary of Administration