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State Constitutional Amendments On The Ballot
Thursday, October 25, 2012

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Richmond Office:
General Assembly Building
Richmond, VA 23218
(804) 698-1034

District Office:
PO Box 6156
McLean, VA 22106
(703) 772-7168
Campaign Office:
Friends of
Barbara Comstock
PO Box 6171
McLean, VA 22106

October 2012
State Constitutional Amendments On The Ballot
Dear Friend,

Since many people are already voting absentee in advance of November 6th, I want to provide you with some information about the two proposed amendments to the Constitution of Virginia which appear on the ballot in 2012. Thanks to those of you who have already reached out to me with your questions.

Ballot Question One: Virginia Property Rights Amendment

The Virginia Property Rights Amendment is the first question on the ballot which restores the original conception of eminent domain. It is a response to the Kelo v. New London decision by the Supreme Court and is designed to protect Virginia property owners. A bipartisan majority passed this measure in the House by 83-17, and in the Senate by 23-17. I voted for and support this amendment.

The Virginia Property Rights Amendment would expand the rights of Virginians when private property is taken for public use. For example, when a business is relocated to make room for a transportation project, any lost profits would be considered in compensating the business owner in addition to the value of land and buildings. The amendment also prevents, for example, localities from acquiring private property if the purpose is primarily related to rezoning to generate more tax revenue for the locality.

For more information about the Property Rights Amendment, I would like to direct you to an information sheet written by my colleague, Senator Mark Obenshain who was the chief patron of this measure in the Senate. This public document provides a good overview of eminent domain, the purpose for the amendment, as well as some answers to common questions. I've provided a link below:


I would also like to direct you to a site developed by another colleague, Delegate Rob Bell, who was the chief patron of this measure in the House of Delegates. I've provided a link here: http://www.vapropertyrightspetition.org/faqs.

Ballot Question Two: Reconvened Session Amendment

When the Constitution of Virginia was adopted, the General Assembly was expected to have thirty-day sessions, but now our sessions alternate between 45 and 60 days, which means that sometimes the reconvened session falls during Passover.

The Reconvened Session Amendment would allow the General Assembly to delay the start of the veto session for up to one week to avoid the possibility of scheduling the session over a religious holiday. It passed the House and Senate with a vote of 98-0 and 39-0, respectively.

Additional information about each amendment may also be found on the Virginia State Board of Elections website.

Please don't hesitate to contact me if you have any questions at [email protected] or (703) 772-7168.


Barbara Comstock

Paid for by Friends of Barbara Comstock

Paid for by Friends of Barbara Comstock.