by Stephani Simmons
October 13, 2016
Commonwealth of Virginia
Terry McAuliffe is the 72nd Governor of Virginia. Since being sworn-into office, Governor McAuliffe has aggressively focused on building a new Virginia economy.
Whether traveling to Bedford or Beijing, Governor McAuliffe has made it clear that his number one priority is economic development and he is working hard to create and maintain jobs throughout the Commonwealth.
The Governor is also working to restore trust in government. On his first day in office, he signed an executive order imposing a $100 gift ban on himself, his family, and members of his administration and their families. He established through executive order the Commission on Integrity and Public Confidence in State Government, which will focus on ethics oversight and enforcement, limits on gifts and loans, rules on conflicts of interest, disclosure requirements and post-public service restrictions.
McAuliffe has proven that his administration will be smart stewards of Virginia’s transportation dollars. Demonstrating his commitment to bipartisanship, he worked with Republican leadership on House Bill 2 to prioritize transportation projects based on what is best for Virginia’s commuters not politicians. He followed through on his commitment to lowering the downtown/midtown tunnel tolls to alleviate the burden on Hampton Roads residents, commuters, and businesses. He eliminated the EZ Pass maintenance fee for all Virginia commuters, and suspended work on Route 460, because he does not believe that Virginia taxpayers should be spending hundreds of millions of dollars on a road when we don’t have permits to ensure its completion. Governor McAuliffe also worked with the Governor of Maryland and the Mayor of the District of Columbia to invest $75 million in our regional metro system – taking cars off the roads and relieving congestion.
Governor McAuliffe understands that in order to compete for the jobs of tomorrow, it is essential that we make key investments today. The Governor signed legislation increasing the amount of Virginia qualified research and development expenses that can now be claimed as a tax credit. This legislation is important because it encourages private companies to invest in the jobs of the future.
In order to ensure that Virginia continues to have the best workers in the world, Governor McAuliffe understands that Virginia must continue to have a world-class education system. This year, he was proud to sign standards of learning reform legislation, to make Virginia’s education system work better for students, teachers, and our schools.
Virginia is home to approximately 800,000 veterans, and the Governor is committed to fighting for those who have so bravely served our country. He expanded the Virginia Values Veterans initiative, which encourages employers to recruit, hire, train, and retrain our veterans. He also signed legislation to provide unemployment compensation to military spouses who leave their job to accompany their spouse to a new military assignment in another state, as well as legislation that will expand access to higher education for eligible veterans’ family members.
In July 2014, Governor McAuliffe signed Executive Order 23 Establishing the New Virginia Economy Workforce Initiative. With a goal of an additional 50,000 credentials, aligning the workforce supply with demand and giving experience credit to our veterans, Governor McAuliffe wants to redesign our current workforce system to work with the needs of our communities and businesses.
The Governor’s administration has made unprecedented progress on the restoration of rights to rehabilitated felons who have served their time. People who have paid their debt to society should be able to work, pay taxes and vote.
Governor McAuliffe ran for office to fight for uninsured Virginians and that is why he took bold executive action to expand health care. His plan, A Healthy Virginia, will help improve the lives of more than 200,000 Virginians by expanding access to care, improving care for veterans and for those with severe mental illness, and enhancing value and innovation across our health system.
Governor McAuliffe previously served as Chairman of the Democratic National Committee from 2001 to 2005, was co-chairman of President Bill Clinton’s 1996 re-election campaign, and was chairman of Hillary Clinton’s 2008 presidential campaign.
He and his wife Dorothy were married in 1988 and have five children.
The Governor attended Catholic University and Georgetown Law School.