Petersen Senate Sentinel: What's a Normal Day During Session?

Friends, Virginians, Citizens of Fairfax:

We are now on the back half of the 46-day session, which moves at a frantic pace. (We'll return in April briefly). What's an average day during session? Not too many average days but try this ...

5:45 a.m. Wake up. It's dark and windy. Perfect for a 5 mile run down Grove Avenue through the West End of Richmond. Then shower. Off to work.

7:15 a.m. Hosting The John Fredericks radio show ("Truckin' the Truth!") at my office in the General Assembly Building. In walks Governor Terry McAuliffe. Responding to an on-air question, he states "I support Chap" on my electricity reform bill. (Yes, SB 1095 is dead for now). Ok, that's actually news.

8:00 a.m. Down the stairs to the Education and Health Committee meeting. A couple hundred people there to testify and watch. We vote on 75 House bills in approximately three hours.

11:30 a.m. Walk over to the State Capitol. (Thanks Virginia Cattlemen for the free steak sandwich). Meeting of Democratic Caucus.

Noon. Session begins. We spend four hours debating Senate amendments to the state budget. Note that the Senate has a 3% pay raise for state workers and 2% pay raise (with local match) for teachers. That's good. On the bad side, we still have an unfunded Circuit Court judgeship in Fairfax County. I vote "yes' on the overall budget proposal.

5 p.m. Back in my office. The GAB building starts to empty. I'm answering emails and drafting letters to go out tomorrow.

6:30 pm. A rare treat. I drive out to Chesterfield to join Rev. David Anderson and his wife Eun Joo for a Korean-style dinner with other lawmakers. David is our chaplain in the Assembly.

8:00 pm. Back in the GAB. I have a conference call with an international client. (Yes, our real work goes on.).

9:15 pm. I'm finally out the door. Meet a friend at a local pub. Watch the end of UNC-Duke game. Grayson Allen is balling. The Caps win again.

10:30 pm. Home to Grove Avenue. Dead asleep in minutes.

JCP NOTES: We have our last town hall this Saturday, February 11, 9:00 a.m. at Fairfax City Hall with Delegate David Bulova. Hope you can make it.

During session you can reach my office at We're located at Room 329 in the Assembly Building. Our office phone number during session is 804-698-7534.

Let us know how we can represent you better.

– Chap