Public Comments for 02/16/2023 Unknown Committee/Subcommittee
SB815 - Va. Motor Vehicle Warranty Enforcement Act; expands definition of motor vehicle, clarifies consumer.
No Comments Available
SB886 - Health care providers and grocery store workers; employers to provide paid sick leave.
Last Name: Jones Organization: CWA Virginia State Council Locality: Henrico

Everyday working women and men should not have to go to work sick. Paid sick leave would allow employees to heal quicker and return to their jobs sooner, and not make their co-workers sick also. Please support SB 886 and SB 1101 in House Commerce and Energy sub-committee #5 today. Kirk Jones

SB957 - Prescription Drug Affordability Board and Fund; established, drug cost affordability review, etc.
Last Name: Townsend Organization: National Multiple Sclerosis Society Locality: Roanoke County

I write in support of the wise, bipartisan Senate Bill 957 (Peterson). Most Virginians need relief from the ever escalating cost of prescription drugs. As a 72-year-old MS patient who has seen over the last 20 years the exponentially rising cost of the drugs I need to fight my disease, I heartily support Senate Bill 957. Both the National Multiple Sclerosis Society and the AARP support Virginia’s having such a board to look at prescription drug affordability. We MS patients, our families, and our friends sincerely believe that establishing a prescription drug review board is a reasonable ask, especially since the new board will not meet until 2024. The process for establishing this board has been very carefully and thoughtfully laid out by Senator Peterson and others. I promise you that every Virginian I know thinks this is a reasonable ask! There are those who say such a board will limit research and clinical trials in Virginia. Balderdash! I am the mother of a senior clinical executive employed by a pharmaceutical company; I can see the issue in its entirety. Such a board as the one delineated in SB 947 will accomplish a few essential things—keep prices from soaring beyond inflation and help make access to much needed prescriptions equitable and fair. Thank you for your attention to my comments! Sincerely, Rose Marie Townsend Government Relations Activities Committee for Virginia (NMSS)

Last Name: Wood Organization: National Multiple Sclerosis Society Locality: Richmond

The National Multiple Sclerosis Society supports SB 957, to establish a Prescription Drug Affordability Board in the Commonwealth. Multiple sclerosis, or MS, is an unpredictable disease of the central nervous system, impacting an estimated 1 million Americans. There is no cure, though significant progress is being made to achieve Society’s vision of a world free of MS. Symptoms vary from person to person and may include disabling fatigue, mobility challenges, cognitive changes, and vision issues. Early diagnosis and treatment are critical to minimize disability. Treatment of MS has vastly improved over the years. When someone is diagnosed with MS, their clinician will typically prescribe a medication referred to as a disease-modifying therapy (DMT). Evidence shows that early and ongoing treatment with a DMT is the best way to manage the MS disease course, prevent accumulation of disability, and protect the brain from damage. While treatments have improved, they are often out of reach financially. Despite more than 20 DMTs on the market, including some generics, prices continue to rise since the first DMT was approved in 1993 and entered the market at approximately $11,500. In 2013, the average price was around $60,000 per year; in 2016 the median price of brand DMTs increased to $80,000; and just four years later in 2022, the brand median price was nearly $94,000. Six have increased in price by more than 200% since they came on the market, with nine now priced at more than $100,000 per year. This creates barriers for your constituents with MS to access these life-changing medications. In a 2019 survey, 40% of respondents reported that they have altered the use of their DMTs due to cost by skipping or delaying treatment, taking less than prescribed, or even stopping treatment altogether . Because of the high cost of MS, many must delay retirement or are less able to save for themselves as they age. These trends clearly highlight an issue that must be addressed. One solution to addressing this issue is the formation of a Prescription Drug Affordability Board (PDAB). The Society believes that both innovation and affordable access are critical to ensure that people with MS receive the medication and treatments they need. The lack of transparency throughout the healthcare system, particularly concerning drug pricing, remains a barrier to stakeholders making informed choices and having the same level of information to drive solutions. We appreciate that SB 957 utilizes a multi-stakeholder approach as we believe that no single stakeholder has all the solutions; we can only find the solutions together. SB 957 aims to create a Prescription Drug Affordability Board that will review drug prices and have the authority to establish an upper payment limit on prescription drugs they deem to be too expensive. This approach will ensure that Virginians pay a fairer and more reasonable cost for their medications. The bill will also establish a diverse stakeholder council to provide input to the Board, and we strongly support the bill’s inclusion of consumer and patient perspectives on that council. The Society supports SB 957 as an important step toward reining in rising drug prices and shedding light on complex issues within the prescription drug market, and we are here to serve as a resource on this important issue. For more information regarding the Society's position, please contact Shannon Wood, Dir. of Advocacy and Policy, at

SB1047 - Virginia Petroleum Products Franchise Act; definition of supplier.
No Comments Available
SB1083 - Shared solar programs; SCC to establish by regulation
No Comments Available
SB1088 - Workers' compensation; post-traumatic stress disorder incurred by dispatchers, definitions.
Last Name: Sprague Locality: Alexandria

As someone who has post traumatic stress, I find this relieving. Please pass it as soon as possible.

SB1101 - Paid family and medical leave program; Virginia Employment Commission required to establish.
Last Name: Jones Organization: CWA Virginia State Council Locality: Henrico

Everyday working women and men should not have to go to work sick. Paid sick leave would allow employees to heal quicker and return to their jobs sooner, and not make their co-workers sick also. Please support SB 886 and SB 1101 in House Commerce and Energy sub-committee #5 today. Kirk Jones

SB1112 - Health insurance; coverage for prescription contraceptives, definition.
Last Name: Lawler Organization: League of Women Voters of Virginia Locality: Midlothian

The League of Women Voters of Virginia supports SB1112. We believe that contraceptives should be accessible to all and that individuals should be able to decide if contraceptives are right for them, not insurance companies. Having financial support without unnecessary expenses out of their pockets such as Co-pays, financial delays, and costly or delayed reimbursements, would help families utilize contraception without barriers. Additionally, according to the U.S government data from the National Survey of Family Growth (NSFG) contraceptives are not just prescribed as a form of birth control, but are also used, especially by young people, for helping to reduce menstrual cramps, acne, and the painful symptoms of endometriosis. We urge you to support SB1112.

Last Name: Alderman Locality: Crozet

If you truly wish to end abortion, addressing the demand side of the issue, rather than the supply side, seems like the kindest, safest, and most effective approach. Ensuring that Virginians with health insurance have ready access to safe, doctor-approved contraception will further reduce unwanted pregnancies, driving down demand for abortion. And it's not like health insurers' profit margins can't afford to be shaved down here and there. Passing this bill will ensure that fewer unwanted pregnancies end in termination. And if that, not just controlling and punishing women, is your ultimate goal, then supporting this bill seems like your only logical move.

SB1136 - Wage or salary history of prospective employees; prohibition on employer seeking history.
No Comments Available
SB1266 - Public utilities; minimum bill a subscriber to a shared solar program is required to pay.
No Comments Available
SB1447 - Disconnections of utility service; SCC to establish limitations, etc.
Last Name: Caywood Organization: Virginia Organizing Locality: Virginia Beach

I support SB1447. In an emergency there may be difficulty in paying a utility bill for a variety of reasons. But a shutoff that comes during an emergency can create additional risks. SB1447 provides basic consumer protections that are recommended by the State Corporation Commission. Please pass SB1447 on to the House for a vote.

End of Comments