HD36 - Space Technology, Infrastructure, Privacy, Electronic Government and Critical Infrastructure

Executive Summary:
To continue the work begun by the Task Force on Science and Technology established under House Joint Resolution 390 (1993), the 1996 General Assembly adopted House Joint Resolution 195, which created a joint legislative subcommittee to study science and technology. The subcommittee reported to the Governor and the 1997 General Assembly in House Document No. 81 (1997). The creation of the Joint Commission on Technology and Science ("JCOTS" or "Commission") was included among the recommendations of the subcommittee. Created by the 1997 General Assembly through House Bill 2138, JCOTS is a permanent legislative commission charged to study all aspects of technology and science, to promote the development of technology and science in the Commonwealth of Virginia through sound public policies, and to report its findings annually to the Governor and the General Assembly. (See Chapter 11 of Title 30 of the Code of Virginia, § 30-85 et seq.) JCOTS, which consists of twelve legislators (seven Delegates and five Senators), submitted its first report to the Governor and the 1998 General Assembly in House Document No. 89 (1998) and submits its fifth report today. JCOTS maintains a website at http://jcots.state.va.us/.

At its meeting on June 21, 2001, JCOTS adopted its 2001-2002 work plan. (See Appendix 1). The workplan identified six issues for study through the establishment and work of advisory committees, co-chaired by JCOTS members: Infrastructure (Senator Newman and Delegate Plum, co-chairs); Privacy (Senator Ticer and Delegate May, co-chairs); Electronic Government (Senator Howell and Delegate Nixon, co-chairs); Critical Infrastructure (Senator Bolling and Delegate Bennett, co-chairs); Intellectual Property (Senator Wampler and Delegate Christian, co-chairs); and Emerging Technologies (Delegates O'Brien and Purkey, co-chairs).

JCOTS' workplan also identified new issues to be introduced at full commission meetings through testimony and presentations, possible field trips, and other issues to be monitored throughout the year. To accomplish these objectives and establish its legislative agenda, JCOTS met as a full commission three times from June 2001 to December 2002. During the period from August to December 2001, advisory committees held 11 meetings. (See Appendix 2) Approximately 75 people participated in JCOTS' work through membership on advisory committees. (See Appendix 3) JCOTS received and adopted advisory committee reports and finalized its legislative recommendations for the 2002 Session at a meeting of the full Commission on December 18, 2001.