Residents of the Burke area visiting local bagel and coffee shops may have found themselves meeting a busy state legislator over the last couple weeks.
Delegate Eileen Filler-Corn (D-41) has been holding office hours at locations such as Caribou Coffee and Einstein Brothers Bagels in order to connect with constituents and listen to their concerns.
The General Assembly recently passed Crossover Day, when all bills that originated in the House switch to the Senate, and vice versa.
As the legislative session moves on, Filler-Corn said her office hours are a great way to meet with her constituents in person.
“Sometimes they have personal issues that they want to talk about. Other times, if we have four or five waiting, we’ll all sit at one table and talk, but sometime they just want to talk privately,” Filler-Corn said.
Filler-Corn said the topic of conversation really depends.
“I’d say education is a big one in the 41st district. SOL reform has been very big,” Filler-Corn said.
SOL reform and education have been major issues this session and are often brought up by constituents at her office hours, Filler-Corn said.
“We have some of the best schools in Fairfax County,” Filler-Corn said. “I think we are moving in the right direction with our SOL reform. A lot of folks want to talk about education.”
Medicaid Expansion is another major priority for Filler-Corn.
“Closing the coverage gap is really a better way of saying it. Just focusing on individuals- 400,000 working Virginians don’t have insurance. We can do something about it, and we really just need to act now. Why not take the money? We’re losing five million dollars a day by not accepting federal money,” Filler-Corn said. “I would say that’s the number one issue.”
According to Filler-Corn, constituents also bring up ethics reform at office hours.
“We spent a lot of time going over some of the current events of what transpired and specific laws and restrictions. We want to know what we can do to ensure the public’s trust, and what will that take,” she said.
Burke resident Rosemarie Kirwan said that ethics and voting reform are the most important issues in Virginia.
Kirwan, who said she has been in activist mode lately, is a major supporter of having more women elected to office.
“I think more women in government is better for society,” Kirwan said.