Bill Allowing Grants to Religious Nonprofits Advances in General Assembly

A bill supported by the Loudoun Board of Supervisors that would allow localities to make grants to faith-based nonprofits is advancing in the General Assembly.

House Bill 377, introduced by Del. Suhas Subramanyam (D-87), would allow localities to make appropriations to nonprofit faith-based organizations that provide community services in the locality for nonreligious purposes.

On Thursday, a subcommittee of the House Committee on Counties, Cities and Towns voted 8-1 to recommend sending that bill to the House floor for a vote, after adding a passage clarifying that nondiscrimination regulations, such as protections from discrimination for religious reasons, would still apply to those organizations. Only Del. Dave A LaRock (R-33), who serves on that subcommittee, voted no. Loudoun’s other representative on the committee, Del. Irene Shin (D-86) voted in favor.

Another bill requested by the county board is finding less support in the House.

Filed as Senate Bill 35 by Sen. Barbara A. Favola (D-31) and House Bill 855 by Del. David A. Reid (D-32), the legislation would allow a Planning Commission to extend deliberations beyond the existing 60-day limit to make a recommendation on a comprehensive plan amendment, if an applicant agrees to that extension. It also extends the time in which a government may consider an appeal of a Planning Commission decision from 60 to 100 days.

A subcommittee of the House Committee on Counties, Cities and Towns, including LaRock, voted unanimously to recommend striking that bill. The companion Senate bill has already passed the Senate on a 26-14 vote, including yes votes from every Loudoun senator except Sen. Jill Holtzman Vogel (R-27).

4 thoughts on “Bill Allowing Grants to Religious Nonprofits Advances in General Assembly

  • 2022-01-27 at 3:43 pm
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    “after adding a passage clarifying that nondiscrimination regulations, such as protections from discrimination for religious reasons, would still apply to those organizations.”

    I’d like clarity on this statement and what it means.

  • 2022-01-27 at 4:19 pm
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    I am a practicing Catholic, but I’m also an American (as well as an Irish citizen) and I strongly support the Constitution. I agree that places of worship should be free from tax because of the Separations Clause. Likewise, I do not believe they deserve any benefit of tax dollars.

  • 2022-01-27 at 4:27 pm
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    If a faith-based nonprofit will accept all comers, there’s no reason why it shouldn’t receive these grants.
    However, safeguards should be in place to ensure that undue proselytizing doesn’t take place. Clients shouldn’t be pressured to adhere to a particular religion in order to access the nonprofit’s services. Otherwise, everything should be good to go. To the Land of Love: Happy Valentine’s Day Loudoun!

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