The purpose of this chapter is to promote public involvement in the development, amendment or repeal of the regulations of the
Department of CorrectionsState
The following words and terms when used in this chapter shall have the following meanings unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:
"Administrative Process Act" means Chapter 40 (§ 2.2-4000 et seq.) of Title 2.2 of the Code of Virginia.
"Agency" means the
Department of CorrectionsState Board of Local and Regional Jails, which is the unit of state government empowered by the agency's basic law to make regulations or decide cases. Actions specified in this chapter may be fulfilled by state employees as delegated by the agency.
"Basic law" means provisions in the Code of Virginia that delineate the basic authority and responsibilities of an agency.
"Commonwealth Calendar" means the electronic calendar for official government meetings open to the public as required by § 2.2-3707 C of the Freedom of Information Act.
''Negotiated rulemaking panel'' or ''NRP'' means an ad hoc advisory panel of interested parties established by an agency to consider issues that are controversial with the assistance of a facilitator or mediator, for the purpose of reaching a consensus in the development of a proposed regulatory action.
"Notification list" means a list used to notify persons pursuant to this chapter. Such a list may include an electronic list maintained through the Virginia Regulatory Town Hall or other list maintained by the agency.
"Open meeting" means any scheduled gathering of a unit of state government empowered by an agency's basic law to make regulations or decide cases, which is related to promulgating, amending or repealing a regulation.
"Person" means any individual, corporation, partnership, association, cooperative, limited liability company, trust, joint venture, government, political subdivision, or any other legal or commercial entity and any successor, representative, agent, agency, or instrumentality thereof.
"Public hearing" means a scheduled time at which members or staff of the agency will meet for the purpose of receiving public comment on a regulatory action.
"Regulation" means any statement of general application having the force of law, affecting the rights or conduct of any person, adopted by the agency in accordance with the authority conferred on it by applicable laws.
"Regulatory action" means the promulgation, amendment, or repeal of a regulation by the agency.
"Regulatory advisory panel" or "RAP" means a standing or ad hoc advisory panel of interested parties established by the agency for the purpose of assisting in regulatory actions.
"Town Hall" means the Virginia Regulatory Town Hall, the website operated by the Virginia Department of Planning and Budget at www.townhall.virginia.gov, which has online public comment forums and displays information about regulatory meetings and regulatory actions under consideration in Virginia and sends this information to registered public users.
"Virginia Register" means the Virginia Register of Regulations, the publication that provides official legal notice of new, amended and repealed regulations of state agencies, which is published under the provisions of Article 6 (§ 2.2-4031 et seq.) of the Administrative Process Act.
A. In considering any nonemergency, nonexempt regulatory action, the agency shall afford interested persons an opportunity to (i) submit data, views, and arguments, either orally or in writing, to the agency; and (ii) be accompanied by and represented by counsel or other representative. Such opportunity to comment shall include an online public comment forum on the Town Hall.
1. To any requesting person, the agency shall provide copies of the statement of basis, purpose, substance, and issues; the economic impact analysis of the proposed or fast-track regulatory action; and the agency's response to public comments received.
2. The agency may begin crafting a regulatory action prior to or during any opportunities it provides to the public to submit comments.
B. The agency shall accept public comments in writing after the publication of a regulatory action in the Virginia Register as follows:
1. For a minimum of 30 calendar days following the publication of the notice of intended regulatory action (NOIRA).
2. For a minimum of 60 calendar days following the publication of a proposed regulation.
3. For a minimum of 30 calendar days following the publication of a reproposed regulation.
4. For a minimum of 30 calendar days following the publication of a final adopted regulation.
5. For a minimum of 30 calendar days following the publication of a fast-track regulation.
6. For a minimum of 21 calendar days following the publication of a notice of periodic review.
7. Not later than 21 calendar days following the publication of a petition for rulemaking.
C. The agency may determine if any of the comment periods listed in subsection B of this section shall be extended.
D. If the Governor finds that one or more changes with substantial impact have been made to a proposed regulation, he may require the agency to provide an additional 30 calendar days to solicit additional public comment on the changes in accordance with § 2.2-4013 C of the Code of Virginia.
E. The agency shall send a draft of the agency's summary description of public comment to all public commenters on the proposed regulation at least five days before final adoption of the regulation pursuant to § 2.2-4012 E of the Code of Virginia.