Va. News: Trouble on the courts

Pickleball was once seen as an easygoing exercise opportunity for seniors but it’s gotten a little too loud for some people. And a Virginia high school basketball team had its season canceled after a coach took to the court.

Those have been among the most read stories over the past week at the Virginia Public Access Project’s Va. News link.

More now from Fred Echols and Edie Gross.

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A bill protecting bus drivers advances to the Virginia Senate

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Mandatory minimum sentences have been controversial for years, and Democrats have tried to give judges more autonomy to make decisions about individual cases. But Michael Pope reports there’s at least one area where Democrats want mandatory minimum sentences.

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Pope & Schapiro: Education miscalculation, crossover day and utility regulation

News of an accounting error shortchanging Virginia’s public schools sent shockwaves through Richmond this week.

Jeff Schapiro, political columnist at the Richmond Times-Dispatch, and Michael Pope discuss and the week that was in politics and state government.

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State lawmakers say Virginia needs a unified approach to gambling regulation

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Recent years have seen an explosion of legal gambling options in Virginia. And, as Michael Pope tells us, lawmakers are now talking about creating a gambling commission to oversee the industry.

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New report: Many Virginians are moving to other states and rural communities

The University of Virginia is out with another analysis of the state’s population – nearly 8.7 million people.  As Sandy Hausman reports, many of them are leaving expensive, congested areas like northern Virginia and Hampton Roads for other states or for rural communities.

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Virginia abortion-rights opponents march for the first time post-Roe

Thousands of people standing in opposition to abortion rights gathered at the Capitol today. Michael Pope reports.

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State lawmakers are scrambling to balance the budget following education accounting error

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Senior members of the money committees and the House and Senate are working to fix a budgeting mistake that has lawmakers scrambling to balance the books. Michael Pope has the latest.

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Bill requiring safe storage of firearms clears Senate, faces uphill battle in House

The recent shooting at a Newport News elementary school has some calling for safe storage requirements for firearms. Michael Pope reports on one piece of legislation at the General Assembly.

Also Tuesday, the Senate approved legislation banning the sale of assault-style weapons.

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House Democrats blast into Youngkin administration over Department of Education error

Lawmakers are preparing to release budget details this weekend, although as Michael Pope reports, they’re having a hard time balancing the books, especially for schools.

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Full Disclosure Briefing: The growth of AI chatbots

People are experimenting with AI chatbots in all sorts of situations– classrooms, writers’ rooms, even newsrooms.

Roben Farzad, host of public radio’s Full Disclosure, and Craig Wright talk about the technology’s impact.

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Full Senate, committee decide some gun related bills

Lawmakers in Richmond are debating the presence of guns in public places.

Michael Pope reports the bills aren’t likely to make it to the governor’s desk.

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Va. News: Green Book markers, Rocket Lab’s Wallops Island launch

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The latest private company to venture into space has launched a rocket from Virginia’s Wallops Island for the first time. And the Commonwealth is considering a new series of roadside historical markers to commemorate the iconic Green Book.

Those have been among the most read stories over the past week at the Virginia Public Access Project’s Va. News link. More now from Fred Echols and Edie Gross with VPAP.

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The momentum around banning solitary confinement in Virginia continues to grow

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Once again, lawmakers in Richmond are talking about banning the practice of holding incarcerated people in solitary confinement. But, as Michael Pope reports, this year the effort has new momentum.

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Where will Virginia’s next casino project end up?

Lawmakers are about to roll the dice on casinos, and a bill to allow for a referendum in Petersburg has already cleared an early hurdle. Michael Pope has the story.

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Pope & Schapiro: Tax cuts, abortion restrictions & the Parole Board

A divided General Assembly is proving to be a hurdle for two of the governor’s biggest legislative priorities.

Jeff Schapiro, political columnist at the Richmond Times-Dispatch, and Michael Pope recap the week in politics and state government.

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State lawmakers consider regulations for payday lending apps

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Opponents of payday lending are worried about a bill making its way through the House of Delegates. Michael Pope explains why.

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It doesn’t look likely state lawmakers will expand ranked choice voting this year

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Lawmakers will be on the ballot this year and, as Michael Pope tells us, they’ll also be making decisions about how the ballot is organized.

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State lawmakers are debating several bills related to public school libraries

Public school libraries are the focus of several bills in the General Assembly this year. Michael Pope reports.

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High school students launch drive to supply period products

Avery Bruen and Weining Ding formed a group called EmpowerHer to supply fellow students with free tampons and pads. (Credit: Radio IQ)

Three years ago, Virginia’s legislature voted to make free tampons and pads available to girls in middle and high school, but the measure did not provide money for that expense. 

Now, young women in Albemarle County have mobilized to ensure access to period products, as Sandy Hausman reports.

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Full Disclosure Briefing: Virginia’s big data center deal

Digital economies still require brick-and-mortar infrastructure.  And a big new announcement from Amazon and the state is a good example.

Roben Farzad, host of public radio’s Full Disclosure, and Weekend Edition host Craig Wright have more on the plans and the push-back.

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Smart thermostat legislation cools in Virginia Senate

Smart technology is leading to new fears among lawmakers. Michael Pope reports.

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Gun control legislation moves forward in Virginia Senate, faces tough odds in the House

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Lawmakers in Richmond are not expected to pass any new legislation to crack down on gun violence this year. But, as Michael Pope tells us, that doesn’t mean they won’t try.

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Va. News: Microtransit & cutting class

Albemarle County will use a new grant to try out what it hopes will be a better way of providing public transportation.  And it seems quite a few college students who got used to remote education during the pandemic are less than enthusiastic about going class.

Those have been among the most read stories over the past week at the Virginia Public Access Project’s Va. News link.

More now from Fred Echols and David Poole.

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UVA announces new biotech center

The University of Virginia has announced plans for a new $300 million biotech center that will produce and test new treatments for many diseases. 

The center could break ground in a matter of months and is already recruiting the first of 100 new scientists as Sandy Hausman reports.

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Senate committee strikes down several abortion-related bills

Governor Glenn Youngkin campaigned on a platform of limiting abortions with a 15-week ban. But Democrats in the Senate are rejecting any new restrictions. Michael Pope reports.

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Efforts to roll back voting access have already been struck down

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Democrats appear to be poised to reject Republican efforts to roll back access to voting. Michael Pope reports.

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Pope & Schapiro: Youngkin, Ford and the CCP

An about-face on a potential economic development win and a tabloid-style scandal are making headlines at the capital.

Jeff Schapiro, political columnist at the Richmond Times-Dispatch, and Michael Pope recap the week in politics and state government.

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Virginia Senators defeat effort to further cut the grocery tax, House bills remain

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Last year, members of the General Assembly got rid of the state portion of the grocery tax. Now, as Michael Pope reports, lawmakers are considering several bills to get rid of the rest of it.

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Some lawmakers want to limit data center spread

Loudoun County is known throughout the world for its concentration of data centers, although as Michael Pope reports several lawmakers are trying to prevent them from spreading out into new areas.

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Could Virginia drop voter drop boxes?

Credit: Jahd Khalil / Radio IQ

In the last few years, Virginia has made many changes to how elections work. Michael Pope has this report on efforts to roll back some of those changes.

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Full Disclosure Briefing: What is tipflation?

We’re used to tipping for certain services like meals or haircuts.  But more and more digital checkout screens are now suggesting a tip.

Roben Farzad, host of public radio’s Full Disclosure, and Craig Wright talk about the growing trend.

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An effort to punish drug dealers in fatal overdose cases may already be over

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The governor wants to crack down on dealers who supply drugs that result in fatal overdoses. But, Michael Pope reports some recovery advocates fear that might backfire.

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Va. News: Rare Virginia postage stamp, rural hospitals in trouble

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Hospitals in rural Virginia are facing an uncertain financial future. And, a 10-cent postage stamp made in Virginia is expected to sell for quite a bit more than that at auction in New York.

Those have been among the most read stories over the past week at the Virginia Public Access Project’s Va. News link. More now from Fred Echols and Edie Gross.

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An effort to ban solitary confinement in Virginia is moving forward

State Senator Joe Morrissey

Lawmakers in Richmond are considering a bill that would prohibit people who are incarcerated from being held in solitary confinement. Michael Pope has the story.

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Pope & Schapiro: Recapping the first few days of the General Assembly session and what might come next

The first few days of the 2023 General Assembly session are in the books. 

Jeff Schapiro, political columnist at the Richmond Times-Dispatch, and Michael Pope recap what’s happened so far and what might come next.

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Federal authorities making headway in drug battle, but stress continued public health threat

U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Virginia Christ Kavanaugh

The drug war continues in Virginia, with the U.S. Attorney for the Western District declaring two victories, but conceding fentanyl and other narcotics are still a major threat to public health.  Sandy Hausman has that story. 

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Abortion will be a hot topic in Richmond this year, just don’t expect much to change

Governor Glenn Youngkin lays out his 2023 agenda during his annual State of the Commonwealth address. (Credit: Michael Pope)

Abortion is likely to be one of the hottest topics the General Assembly will consider this year. But, as Michael Pope tells us, don’t expect much to happen as a result.

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In State of the Commonwealth address, Youngkin calls for tax cuts, 15-week abortion ban

Gov. Glenn Youngkin

Governor Glenn Youngkin says Virginia needs to catch up. 

David Seidel has details from Youngkin’s State of the Commonwealth address,

Governor Glenn Youngkin’s State of the Commonwealth address touched on a number of areas.

But, as Michael Pope reports, one part of the speech had lawmakers buzzing.

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The 2023 General Assembly session is now underway

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Lawmakers are back in Richmond for the 2023 General Assembly session. And as Michael Pope reports, sparks are already flying.

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Changes to Virginia’s behavioral health system will be a major focus of this year’s session

Lawmakers will return to Richmond Wednesday, where they will be debating hundreds of bills. As Michael Pope tells us, one issue that is likely to be central to the General Assembly session is transforming Virginia’s behavioral health system.

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Full Disclosure Briefing: The high stakes competition of recruiting businesses to Virginia

Virginia’s governor says the Commonwealth is not keeping pace with its peers.  And he’s proposed a number of changes he says will make the state more competitive.

Roben Farzad, host of public radio’s Full Disclosure, and Craig Wright talk about the high-stakes competition of recruiting businesses to Virginia.

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What impacts could special elections have on this year’s General Assembly session?

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Voters in three parts of Virginia will be heading to the polls Tuesday to select new members of the General Assembly. Michael Pope reports.

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General Assembly may expand remedial reading program to middle schools

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Kids who were in kindergarten when the pandemic hit will enter fourth grade next year, and many still struggle with reading.  Sandy Hausman reports that lawmakers in Richmond will consider a bill to help those students catch up. 

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Virginia lawmaker calls for roll-back of electric car legislation over cobalt mining

A lawmaker from Virginia Beach is attacking the requirement that more electric cars be sold here because he says a component of their batteries is mined by slave labor. Sandy Hausman reports.

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Wilder to Youngkin: The people will tell you if you should go further

Former Gov. Douglas Wilder

The General Assembly session begins Wednesday, with a State of the Commonwealth speech from the governor.

Michael Pope has this insight on the moment from a former governor.

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Va. News: Daylight Saving Time & saving historic documents

A Roanoke County delegate wants to find out more about how switching to Daylight Saving Time every spring impacts Virginians and whether that should continue.  And some of the nation’s oldest historical documents may be at risk of damage from material that was meant to protect them.

Those have been among the most read stories over the past week at the Virginia Public Access Project’s Va. News link.

More now from Fred Echols and Edie Gross.

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Children’s Hospital of Richmond helps schools prepare for emergencies involving cardiac arrest

At the Children’s Hospital of Richmond Dr. John Phillips is working with schools to win certification from Project Adam. (Credit: Children’s Hospital of Richmond)

When an NFL player collapsed on national TV, it raised public awareness about cardiac arrest.  

A hospital in Richmond is helping schools to prepare for a similar event as Sandy Hausman reports.

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Panel that regulates utilities down to one member

State lawmakers were already looking at a busy session when one member of the State Corporation Commission announced her resignation. 

That will leave just one person on an essential regulatory board, and as Sandy Hausman reports, making new appointments through the legislature could be a challenge.

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Pope & Schapiro: What’s at stake in Tuesday’s special elections and the General Assembly session

Virginia’s General Assembly gets down to work on Wednesday.  But before that a couple of new members will be elected.

Jeff Schapiro, political columnist at the Richmond Times-Dispatch, and Michael Pope have more on what’s at stake.

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The governor wants to cut “unnecessary regulations,” but could that hurt housing development?

Lawmakers are about to return to Richmond for the General Assembly session, and one of the items they’ll be talking about is expanding the stock of new housing. Michael Pope has this preview.

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