Timber theft; accounting, penalty. (SB1469)

Introduced By

Sen. Ben Chafin (R-Lebanon) with support from co-patron Sen. Roz Dance (D-Petersburg)


Passed Committee
Passed House
Passed Senate
Signed by Governor
Became Law


Timber sales; theft; accounting; penalty. Provides that a person who buys and removes timber from a landowner's property is guilty of timber theft if he fails to pay the landowner by the date specified in their agreement or, if there is no written agreement, within 60 days of removing the timber. The bill provides that a person who is convicted of timber theft is guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor and shall be ordered to pay three times the value of the timber removed in addition to any penalties imposed by the court. The bill provides that, following the passing of the payment deadline, a buyer's failure to pay within 10 days of receiving a demand for payment shall constitute prima facie evidence of the buyer's intent to violate the timber theft provision. An exception exists for a purchaser who made payment to a person he believed in good faith to be the rightful owner of the timber. The bill requires a timber buyer, in certain cases, to furnish at the request of the landowner an accounting of each load removed from the property, with all supporting documentation. A person who fails to provide such information, or who provides false information, is guilty of a Class 3 misdemeanor. The bill extends from 30 days to 90 days the period during which the owner of land on which a person encroached and cut timber has the right to notify such trespasser and to appoint a timber estimator to determine the amount of damages and directs the State Forester to assist landowners and law-enforcement agencies with regard to reported cases of timber theft. Finally, the bill excludes from the mandatory disclosure provisions of the Virginia Freedom of Information Act those records of the Department of Forestry that are composed of confidential commercial or financial information supplied to the Department in the course of a timber theft investigation. This bill is identical to HB 2411. Read the Bill »


Bill Has Passed


01/08/2019Prefiled and ordered printed; offered 01/09/19 19104311D
01/08/2019Referred to Committee on Agriculture, Conservation and Natural Resources
01/10/2019Impact statement from VCSC (SB1469)
01/17/2019Reported from Agriculture, Conservation and Natural Resources with amendments (12-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
01/17/2019Rereferred to Finance
01/22/2019Impact statement from DPB (SB1469)
01/30/2019Reported from Finance with substitute (16-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
01/30/2019Committee substitute printed 19106124D-S1
01/31/2019Impact statement from VCSC (SB1469S1)
01/31/2019Constitutional reading dispensed (40-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
02/01/2019Read second time
02/01/2019Reading of amendments waived
02/01/2019Committee amendments rejected
02/01/2019Reading of substitute waived
02/01/2019Committee substitute agreed to 19106124D-S1
02/01/2019Engrossed by Senate - committee substitute SB1469S1
02/04/2019Read third time and passed Senate (40-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
02/06/2019Placed on Calendar
02/06/2019Read first time
02/06/2019Referred to Committee on Agriculture, Chesapeake and Natural Resources
02/08/2019Impact statement from DPB (SB1469S1)
02/13/2019House committee, floor amendments and substitutes offered
02/13/2019Reported from Agriculture, Chesapeake and Natural Resources with substitute (22-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
02/13/2019Committee substitute printed 19106962D-H1
02/14/2019Impact statement from DPB (SB1469H1)
02/14/2019Read second time
02/15/2019Read third time
02/15/2019Committee substitute agreed to 19106962D-H1
02/15/2019Engrossed by House - committee substitute SB1469H1
02/15/2019Passed House with substitute BLOCK VOTE (94-Y 0-N)
02/15/2019VOTE: BLOCK VOTE PASSAGE (94-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
02/15/2019Reconsideration of House passage agreed to by House
02/15/2019Passed House with substitute BLOCK VOTE (95-Y 0-N)
02/15/2019VOTE: BLOCK VOTE PASSAGE #2 (95-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
02/19/2019House substitute agreed to by Senate (40-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
02/19/2019Title replaced 19106962D-H1
02/22/2019Bill text as passed Senate and House (SB1469ER)
02/22/2019Impact statement from DPB (SB1469ER)
02/22/2019Signed by President
02/22/2019Signed by Speaker
02/25/2019Impact statement from VCSC (SB1469ER)
03/04/2019Enrolled Bill Communicated to Governor on March 4, 2019
03/04/2019G Governor's Action Deadline Midnight, March 26, 2019
03/12/2019G Approved by Governor-Chapter 353 (effective 7/1/19)
03/12/2019G Acts of Assembly Chapter text (CHAP0353)