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Peace reigns between House, Senate as joint rules panel acts on deferred appointments

Peace reigns between House, Senate as joint rules panel acts on deferred appointments

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Amigo Wade has been leading the General Assembly’s critical legislative services division for 16 months, but the legislature is finally getting around to making him the agency’s full-time director.

The Joint Rules Committee met on Monday for the first time since January 2020 and briskly acted on legislative appointments to 12 public bodies, including a number of advisory committees and authorities that are critical to Virginia’s economic development and research programs.

Appointing Wade as director of the Division of Legislative Services was top priority, after feuding between the House and Senate over leadership of the Joint Rules Committee delayed his appointment through two regular and two special General Assembly sessions.

The assembly still would need to confirm his appointment, as well as that of former Virginia Secretary of Finance John Bennett to the Virginia Retirement System Board of Trustees for a five-year term.

Wade joined the division in 1997 and has served as deputy director or acting director for 10 years.

“Amigo is an invaluable resource for so many issues,” said House Speaker Eileen Filler-Corn, D-Fairfax, who is chair of the joint panel, despite the Senate’s desire to share the leadership role.

Sen. Mamie Locke, D-Hampton, chair of the Senate Rules Committee, said, “He does a yeoman’s task.”

Filler-Corn and Locke negotiated appointments to 31 unfilled seats on a dozen public bodies, including the Economic Development Partnership Authority and the new Virginia Innovation Partnership Authority.

It took 30 minutes to complete the work.

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