Meet Senator Jennifer McClellan
Jennifer McClellan's legislation is signed into law
Jennifer McClellan at the General Assembly
Senator McClellan Meets with constituents
Jennifer McClellan accepting the VEA Legislative Champion Award

Latest News


One state senator’s impassioned speech in which she identified as a survivor of incest didn’t stop a Senate committee on Thursday from killing a handful of bills that proponents said would have increased access to abortions.

Votes fell along party lines on the bills, which covered topics including changing regulations applying to clinics that perform abortions and preventing women from having to report cases of rape or incest to law enforcement if they are receiving an abortion funded by the state.


In December 2016, then-Delegate McClellan was interviewed by The HistoryMakers, an  organization with the largest African American video oral history collection in the nation. Last week, they they returned to Richmond for a follow-up interview about Senator McClellan's transition from the Virginia House of Delegates to the Virginia Senate, the changing political landscape in Virginia, her legislative work, and the Virginia's Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Commission and its African American Legislators and King in Virginia projects. 


The Richmond Public Schools administration is asking for a 3.2 percent increase in the school division’s operating budget for the next fiscal year, a $9.4 million bump from the current budget.

At Tuesday’s School Board meeting in City Hall, RPS Chief Financial Officer David Myers presented the administration’s “estimate of needs.” The presentation started the monthslong process of adopting a budget.

The division is still struggling to recoup the funding, specifically from the state, that it lost as a result of the Great Recession.

During the 2008-09 school year, the state funded 45 percent of Richmond’s public education budget, according to an analysis by The Commonwealth Institute for Fiscal Analysis, a research organization based in Richmond that focuses on economics and policy. In 2015-16, that share decreased to 39 percent, the analysis showed.

The budget does not include more funding from the state. Instead, the district is at risk of losing approximately $4 million in additional state funding because of changes to the Local Composite Index, a tool used to determine state funding.

Two Richmond representatives — Del. Jeff Bourne and Sen. Jennifer McClellan, both Democrats — have stepped forward to help ensure the division doesn’t lose the funding. The two, at the request of the School Board and the administration, introduced budget amendments to make sure the school division is “held harmless” from LCI calculation updates


Henrico Sen. Jennifer McClellan said her proposed criminal justice reform bill will allow new sentencing hearings for felons convicted of nonviolent crimes.

“It’s something that I’ve always supported as a member and an issue of fundamental fairness,” McClellan said.

The bill provides a new sentencing for any person still incarcerated after being found guilty of a nonviolent felony by a jury before 2000.

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We have reached the halfway point of the 2018 General Assembly Session, known as “Crossover.”  Tuesday was the last day for the House and Senate to complete work on their own bills. On Wednesday, they began hearing bills that passed the other body.  We have just over three weeks left to address nearly 2,000 pending bills. 

This week I’d like to highlight SB 181 (Stanley), which I co-sponsored, to repeal Virginia’s law mandating automatic suspension of driver’s licenses for failure to pay fines and court costs, which passed the Senate last week 33-6. 

Today is "Crossover," the midway point of the Session where the House and Senate must complete work on their bills.  You can follow my bills and their progress through the General Assembly on the LIS website, and you can read a summary of all of my 2018 legislation and view committee hearings for each on my website

I am eager to hear from you on issues you care about. To share your views on legislation, contact my office at (804) 698-7509 or You can also stop by my office in the Pocahontas Building at 900 East Main Street. My offices are located in E512.

Agriculture is Virginia’s largest industry.  Yet many communities in the commonwealth do not have enough places to purchase healthy, affordable food as a wide variety of factors have led supermarkets to disinvest from lower-income areas across the commonwealth, creating a public health crisis.