Today, the Virginia Senate passed House Bill 831, making it Delegate Scott Surovell’s third piece of legislation to pass both houses of the General Assembly. H.B. 831 passed the Senate on a 40-0 vote after having been reported unanimously from the Senate Committee on General Laws and Technology. It also drew bipartisan support in the House of Delegates which passed it on a 98-0 vote on February 16.
H.B. 831 requires that out-of-state corporations to register with the State Corporation Commission before bidding on a state or local government procurements. Currently, the state and localities are not required to confirm an entities’ registration before accepting their bid. H.B. 831 will require that corporations include their S.C.C. identification number with their bids or proposals.
“H.B. 831 levels the playing field for Virginia corporations,” Surovell said. “Previously, out of state companies could undercut local businesses, since they weren’t playing by the same rules.” Surovell pointed to several contracts awarded to unregistered foreign corporations that underbid Virginia companies. “This is money that could be staying in Virginia.”
In addition to restoring Virginia companies’ competitive standing, H.B. 831 will also result in increased revenue for the Commonwealth. “The payment of these fees will result in the State Corporation Commission receiving enhanced funding. It will also save Virginia litigants services of process costs that can be substantial to serve documents outside of the Commonwealth.”
“Small businesses are the backbone of the Commonwealth’s economy and Virginia businesses must be able to compete fairly against out of state corporations. This legislation ensures that they follow the rules.”
The Senate proposed certain minor technical amendments to the legislation, therefore H.B. 831 will return to the House for final approval before being sent to Governor McDonnell.