“As passed by the General Assembly, these bills are an overreach and inconsistent with what other states have done to insure the protection of their citizens,” said Lunenburg Sheriff Arthur Townsend, President of the Virginia Sheriffs’ Association. “Virginia’s sheriffs request the Governor to veto HB 1673 and SB 965, because failure to do so will jeopardize public safety on a number of levels.”
The public safety risks are too great to take a chance on the passage of these two bills. There has been several conflicting interpretations of the effects of these two bills which limit the law enforcement community from collecting not only license plate data, but also any collection of surveillance technology acquired data to solve crime. The words in the bills are important, not just the rhetoric.
Sheriffs join professionals in the legal community in agreement that these bills will significantly limit the ability of the Commonwealth’s law enforcement agencies to respond to crime and apprehend offenders. Furthermore, there have been no credible witnesses to come forward with experiences of abuse because license plates are not currently considered “personal information.”
Therefore, the sheriffs respectfully request Governor McAuliffe to veto HB 1673 and SB 965.