Legislative Action

The Sierra Club Virginia Chapter’s legislative work is critical to our mission of a just, clean energy future. The Chapter’s Legislative Committee meets periodically to determine our legislative agenda and is composed of volunteer leaders from across the Commonwealth that cover an assigned issue area of their choosing. These volunteer leaders help educate the committee of their peers on the legislative work happening representing their area of expertise. 

Virginia State Capitol

Doug Kerr from Albany, NY, United States, CC BY-SA 2.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0>, via Wikimedia Commons

In conjunction with the Chapter’s Legislative and Political Director, the Chapter Legislative Committee votes to take positions on legislation before the Virginia General Assembly, engages with elected members of the General Assembly, testifies before subcommittee and committee meetings in support of our priorities, and works to hold legislators accountable through award programs and our annual Climate, Energy, and Justice Scorecard.

The Sierra Club Virginia Chapter legislative scope of work is wide ranging. The Chapter is consistently engaged in legislation related to clean renewable energy, environmental justice, energy efficiency, water, toxics, plastic pollution, clean and reliable transportation, and good government among many others. 

The Chapter Legislative Committee consists of voting members, who are required to be an issue area lead, and meetings are open to other Chapter volunteers and leaders to view and participate. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Virginia House Chamber

Antony-22, CC BY-SA 4.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0>, via Wikimedia Commons

How do I contact the Sierra Club Virginia Chapter with questions about legislation? 
Send an email to Connor.kish@sierraclub.org.

I would like the Sierra Club Virginia Chapter to support/oppose a bill that is a priority for me/my group, what do I do? 
Send an email to connor.kish@sierraclub.org and include at least: the bill, the background information, reasoning for your position, timelines/deadlines.

How does the Sierra Club Virginia Chapter decide to support or oppose a bill? 
By a majority vote of the voting members of our Chapter Legislative Committee.

Does the Sierra Club Virginia Chapter ever change its legislative positions, and why? 
Yes, the Chapter Legislative Committee often directs the Legislative Director to issue a change of position on a bill. This can be due to amendments that improved the bill, or a number of other factors.

Can I request the Sierra Club Virginia Chapter lobbyist speak on behalf of my bill in committee? 
Only if the Chapter Legislative Committee has issued an official position on the bill in question. 

Can I invite the Sierra Club Virginia Chapter legislative staff to speak to my organization, class, or group about environmental policy?
Yes! Please send all event invitations to connor.kish@sierraclub.org. 

I am a reporter, and would like to request a comment from the Sierra Club on a bill.
We are glad to respond to media inquiries. Please email Tim.Cywinski@sierraclub.org with your request. 

Does the Sierra Club Virginia Chapter support bills introduced by both parties?
Yes! Our Legislative Committee takes positions on legislation by the bill’s merit.

I would like to be involved in the Sierra Club Virginia Chapter Legislative Committee, what do I do?
Great! We would love to have you there. Please send an email to the Chair of the Legislative Committee, Bob Shippee, at rsoxbob@gmail.com to express your interest. 

I want to work with the Sierra Club on a bill in the next legislative session. What are the steps? 
Contact us early on in the process. There are a tremendous number of factors that will need to be considered to determine our level of involvement, if able, in any legislative efforts originating from outside the Sierra Club.