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Proposed VA laws could affect your pocketbook and your pet

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RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) -

In one week, Virginia lawmakers will battle over bills that could affect issues ranging from your pocketbook to your pets.

On January 8, Republicans and Democrats will meet at the Capitol and begin debating more than 300 proposed laws.

For example, House Bill 212 bans drivers from holding a pet while behind the wheel.

"I actually think it's a good law because they distract you from driving," said Richmond resident Hernan Contreras. "It will keep you safe and the pet safe."

Another proposed bill would impose a five cent tax on every disposable bag, plastic or paper. That tax would fall to either the consumer or the retailer, which would have to pay five cents for every bag it gives away for free.

One person we spoke to says while the bill aims to protect the environment, it hurts the consumer or retailer.

"I'm always scared of regulations because I know they mean well but it always ends up hurting the people they don't intend to," said shopper Ben Knotts.

House Bill 21 requires at least one person in every school to have a concealed weapons permit and be trained on how to handle a gun.

"I understand the safety of the teachers and I do understand there's a growing epidemic but I still don't feel comfortable knowing there's going to be a gun where my children are getting their education every day," said Richmond resident Sherhonda McLean.

Another bill would get rid of the $64 tax on hybrid vehicles and provide refunds to those who paid the tax after the law was passed just last year.

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