Legislative Record

I promised to go to work for you in Richmond to put forward common sense, bipartisan solutions to the challenges we face, and that is exactly what I’ve done. I am proud that all of my bills this session passed the Senate and advanced to the House of Delegates, the only Senator with a 100% passage before they were sent to the House of Delegates. Two of my original bills were passed by both the House of Delegates and the Senate of Virginia and signed into law by the Governor. 

Upon the official swearing in, I was appointed to the following committees for the 2023 Virginia General Assembly session: 

  • General Laws and Technology
  • Local Government 
  • Transportation 
  • Rehabilitation and Social Services 

Below are the bills I introduced for the 2023 General Assembly session: 

SB 1503:

Social Work Advisory Board; established.

  • Establishes the Social Work Advisory Board to advise the Governor on efforts to improve the social work profession in Virginia, including an annual report to the Governor and General Assembly.
  • Passed Senate unanimously; killed in the House.

SB 1524:

Elections; filling vacancies in certain local offices.

  • Establishes that vacancies of the Virginia Beach City Council and mayor shall be filled by special elections.
  • This bill was requested by the City of Virginia Beach in their annual Legislative Agenda.
  • Passed Senate unanimously; killed in the House.

SB 1525:

Wholesome food donation; tax credit renewed.

  • Reinstates and expands a tax credit for farmers who donate food to nonprofit food banks for 5 additional years, 2023 – 2027.
  • Updates the food donation eligibility requirement to wholesome food (instead of food crops), which is defined as food that meets all quality and labeling standards imposed by federal, state, and local laws or regulations, including food that may not be readily marketable due to appearance, age, freshness, grade, surplus, or other condition.
  • This bill was championed by high school students from Princess Anne High School in Virginia Beach with Food Rescue.
  • Passed House and Senate unanimously; signed by Gov. Youngkin.

Watch this quick video: https://fb.watch/is-tXEOYpV/ 

SB 1527:

Charitable gaming.

  • Enables Black Greek Letter organizations and cancer/heart disease 501(c)(7) nonprofits to fundraise with charitable games.
  • Passed Senate 36-1; killed in the House.

SB 1544:

Licensed provider reporting requirement.

  • Directs the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services to update its regulations requiring licensed providers to report abuse allegations and incidents.
  • Passed House and Senate unanimously; signed by Gov. Youngkin.

SB 1545:

Civil relief; citizens of the Commonwealth furloughed or otherwise not receiving wages or payments; due to partial closure of the federal government.

  • Provides a stay of evictions and foreclosures for federal government employees and contractors if they lose wages due to a federal government shutdown.

Passed Senate unanimously; killed in the House. 

Senate Democrats worked hard, fought for what we wanted, and were able to find success even in a climate that made passing legislation very difficult.

This session, I proposed budget amendments to fund 10% teacher pay raises and make the earned income tax credit fully refundable. The Richmond Times-Dispatch featured both of these amendments in their coverage of our ongoing budget negotiations. Let’s get this done!

TEACHER PAY RAISES: My amendment will fund the state’s share of 10% teacher pay raises throughout the Commonwealth! Virginia’s public school teachers are among the most underpaid in the nation, and this funding will make it possible to attract and retain more world-class teachers for our kids. When running for the Senate, I made a commitment to fight for teacher pay raises, investing in school infrastructure, and improving access to job training and workforce development opportunities.

Senator Rouse pictured with VEA President Dr. James Fedderman and VEA members during the campaign. 

REFUNDABLE INCOME TAX CREDIT: My amendment will make the income tax credit fully refundable. This will ensure that working families receive the full $300 income tax credit that they deserve, even if their income is below the current threshold to qualify.


The budget proposed by Senate Democrats invests $1 billion more in local public school divisions compared to the current budget signed in June 2022. The Senate’s proposals include $270 million to eliminate the cap on state funding for support staff in schools, $38.6 million to fund temporary assistants in troubled schools, and $50 million for safety and security grants.

Instead of making these investments in education, House Republicans fell in line with Gov. Youngkin’s proposed $1 billion in tax cuts in their amended budget, including cutting the corporate tax rate from 6% to 5%.

The Senate budget also proposes an additional $50 million in mental health investments, compared to only $37 million in the House budget — a $13 million difference.

I’m fighting hard everyday to deliver for the citizens of Virginia Beach! 

  • Senator Aaron R. Rouse

I'm Running to be the Next Lieutenant Governor of Virginia!

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