Welcome to the one-day reconvened session of the General Assembly, where lawmakers meet to consider amendments and vetoes sent down by Gov. Bob McDonnell.
And on a personal note, it's nice to be blogging back on Shad Plank -- and on the day of the Shad Planking, no less! As the former statehouse reporter for the Daily Press, I helped start this blog back in the dark days before Twitter and Facebook and smart phones. I think Shad Plank was powered by coal back then.
Ah, those halcyon days of budget stalemates and partisan bickering and Sen. Tommy Norment giving the in-your-face quote.
I'm talking about 2001, when a dispute over the car tax dragged the session into overtime, without a budget agreeement, and Norment wondered aloud whether then-Gov. Jim Gilmore was smoking hallucinogenic mushrooms.
Fast forward to 2012, when a dispute over transportion has dragged the General Assembly into overtime, and Norment said yesterday that he pitied poor Sen. Chuck Colgan for getting kidney-punched (figuratively speaking, of course) by Sen. Dick Saslaw.
Good to know things haven't changed.
Anyway, we digress.
Attention will be focused today on whether the Senate can bring back the budget compromise that fell apart yesterday on the Senate floor.
The budget failed to pass 20-19 on Tuesday (It needs at least 21 votes) and that will undoubtedly make school officials and local government types very nervous. Also threatened: the timing of VDOT work and various interesting projects on the drawing board in Hampton Roads.
UPDATE: The Senate convened at 11:45 a.m. to restart yesterday's failed budget session, they recessed that until 1 p.m. and at 12 noon they began the one-day session on amendments and vetoes.
So glad we're back.