Bill Howell

             Speaker of the Virginia House of Delegates

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Welcome to the website of William J. Howell, Speaker of the House of Delegates.


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Sep 25

Virginia is America's Best State for Business

Virginia is once again the best state in the nation for business.

Over the past several years, the legislature has worked tirelessly with Governor Bob McDonnell to grow Virginia's economy, strengthen our business environment and put Virginians back to work. Our pro-business regulatory environment, strong workforce and high quality of life make the Commonwealth the most attractive state in the nation for businesses both big and small.

Within the last year, we have taken several big steps to make Virginia more competitive. The General Assembly passed a package of six tort-reform bills this year. Forbes highlights Virginia's tort system as one of the best in the nation. We have taken steps to strengthen Virginia's right-to-work law, another key factor in this ranking. We passed a landmark transportation reform package that will ease congestion and improve the quality of life in our most heavily-populated regions. Forbes ranks Virginia fourth in the "quality of life category.

I am incredibly proud of our efforts and today's news makes it very clear that our policies are working.

Sep 18

Howell outlines transportation reform proposals, calls for Virginia to tackle transportation challenges of the 21st century

RICHMOND, VA –– In a speech to the Fairfax County Chamber of Commerce today Virginia House of Delegates Speaker William J. Howell (R-Stafford) outlined a series of transportation reform proposals and called for Virginia to “tackle the transportation challenges of the 21st Century.”

Following the passage of this year’s historic transportation funding plan, Howell said “the need to be smarter and wiser with our resources takes on added importance.” Howell emphasized the need to find new solutions to congestion problems and increased capacity needs saying “pouring more and more concrete, adding more and more capacity and building more and more mass transit is the 20th Century solution. Instead, we need a new way of thinking about transportation.”

Howell, who carried House Bill 2313 during the 2013 regular session, unveiled 11 specific proposals in three broad areas. His speech focused on increasing the use of technology, making Virginia’s transportation network work better for consumers and improving return on investment.

“First, we must harness technology, innovation and new ideas. Second, we must create a consumer-based model that focuses on congestion relief, safety and economic development. Third, we must ensure that every step we take is measured by its return on investment. This framework should drive our decision making process on transportation. Using technology, innovation and new ideas to build a consumer-driven transportation network based on proven metrics, Virginia can once again lead the country in revolutionizing how state governments spend on transportation,” Howell said in his remarks.

The proposals outlined by the Speaker include creating a new transportation fund dedicated to using technology-based solutions, creating a “Virginia Transportation Solutions Working Group” within the Commonwealth Transportation Board and creating a “Transportation Priority Standard” to evaluate and measure transportation projects based on three primary factors: congestion relief, safety and economic development.

For a full list of the proposals unveiled, click here.

For text of the remarks as prepared for delivery, click here.

Jul 23

Statement of House Leadership

RICHMOND, VA -- Virginia House Speaker William J. Howell (R-Stafford), Majority Leader M. Kirkland "Kirk" Cox (R-Colonial Heights), Caucus Chairman Timothy D. Hugo (R-Fairfax) and Majority Whip Jackson H. Miller (R-Manassas) released the following statement.

"For over 30 years, Bob McDonnell has been a hard-working and dedicated public servant.  His service in the United States Army, as a prosecutor, as a member of the House of Delegates, and as Attorney General demonstrated his lifelong commitment to his country and the Commonwealth.  His time as Governor has been marked with a number of historic achievements in transportation, K-12 and higher education, government reform and much more.  He is known on both sides of the aisle as a man of character, integrity and good will.  Personally, Bob McDonnell has been more than a capable colleague and effective working partner, he has been a friend.

"The Governor has apologized and taken responsibility for his actions. We appreciate his honesty and willingness to address this issue in a forthcoming manner. This is an important step toward regaining the trust and confidence of the people of Virginia.

"The events of recent weeks have raised a number of questions about Virginia's financial disclosure system. Our system relies on the principles of full disclosure and complete transparency. We believe those principles must be upheld by all elected officials.

"As leaders in the General Assembly, we have already begun a thorough review of our disclosure system. We plan to seek strong reforms including new and rigorous reporting requirements on gifts to immediate family members, synchronizing and simplifying reporting periods, and instituting disclosure compliance training for elected officials. We look forward to addressing these issues during the rapidly approaching 2014 Session."


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