How the McDonnell Case Could Impact the Impeachment Process

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Credit: Gage Skidmore / Wikimedia Commons

The case of former Governor Bob McDonnell might end up playing an important role in the impeachment inquiry now playing out in Washington. Michael Pope explains.

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Opponents Think Now is a Good Time for State Lawmakers to Abolish the Death Penalty

virginia_flag_map_0Death penalty opponents are hopeful this is the year they can convince Virginia lawmakers to abolish the death penalty. As Mallory Noe-Payne reports, they’ve spent a decade building a network of support.

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What Research Shows Works, and Doesn’t, With Gun Control

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Credit: Stephen Z / Flickr

This week lawmakers gaveled in, and gaveled out, of a reconvened special session. It was an example of how Republican leaders, since losing the majority in November’s elections, have abandoned efforts to pass legislation addressing gun violence. Mallory Noe-Payne reports.

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New Website Aims to Document Effects of Eastern Shore Poultry Houses

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A truckload of birds is delivered to Tyson’s Temperanceville plant. (Credit: Pamela D’Angelo)

As older chicken houses on the Eastern Shore are being replaced with much larger operations, neighbors and environmental groups have a lot of questions about air and water pollution.

 

Now, a new data tool will give the public a little more information about how the industrial byproduct – poultry manure – is being used.

 

Pamela D’Angelo reports.

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Could State Democrats Bring Back the Estate Tax?

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Credit: Wikimedia Commons

About a decade ago, Virginia abandoned the estate tax. Now, some are hoping Democrats bring it back. Michael Pope reports.

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A Night at the Museum: Hopper Exhibit at the VMFA

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(Credit: Mallory Noe-Payne)

The newest exhibit at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts in Richmond takes experiential art to a new level.

The museum has recreated a famous painting of a hotel room, where guests can actually spend a night.

Mallory Noe-Payne checked it out and has this report.

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Tax Analysts to Congress: Consider Helping Low-Income Families in Year-End Budget

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Credit: Rog Cogswell / Creative Commons

As the calendar draws to a close, federal officials in Washington are trying to close out the books. And, that’s creating a whirlwind of jockeying for dollars. Michael Pope reports.

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The Public Expects More from Female CEOs

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  Professor Nicole Montgomery explains findings of two studies showing the public expects more of female CEOS.
(Credit UVA)

As we approach the 2020 presidential election, some scholars are still speculating over why Hillary Clinton lost her 2016 bid.

At the University of Virginia, two professors at the undergraduate business school have a theory, based on a study of how consumers think about female CEO’s.

Sandy Hausman has that story.

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Va. News: Greene County prosecution seen as Political, Ag tradition upsets some in Floyd County

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A criminal prosecution viewed by many as purely political was called off after Election Day in Greene County.  And the latest culture clash over agricultural tradition in Virginia is happening in Floyd County.

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.

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Virginia Fights Back Against Trump Administration Climate Change Rollbacks

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  Recent so-called sunny day flooding is happening more frequently around the Chesapeake Bay.
(Credit Pamela D’Angelo)

Rollbacks in environmental protection and flood risk management by the Trump administration is forcing states to come up with their own solutions.

On Friday, Virginia Governor Ralph Northam mandated one of the country’s strictest standards for state-owned properties in an effort to steer development away from flood-prone areas.

Pamela D’Angelo reports.

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Youth Advocacy Group Points to Racial Disparities in Juvenile Justice

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Credit: David Nakayama / Creative Commons

Is justice equal for youth offenders who find themselves caught up in the court system?

Michael Pope has more about a new report that calls attention to some disparities in the system.

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New Democratic Majority Could Work to Give Local Governments More Authority

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Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Many General Assembly Democrats campaigned on changing the way guns and environmental issues are regulated. Michael Pope reports part of that change may mean giving more flexibility to local governments.

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To Combat Trade War, Northam Announces State-Led Plan

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In Norfolk, Virginia officials announced a long-term plan to increase the state’s international exports.

Governor Northam called it the first ever statewide strategic plan for international trade.

Mallory Noe-Payne has details.

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Youth Advocacy Group Points to Racial Disparities in Juvenile Justice

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Is justice equal for youth offenders who find themselves caught up in the court system?

Michael Pope has more about a new report that calls attention to some disparities in the system.

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Virginia Students in Subsidized Housing Often Have to Attend Low-Performing Schools

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Credit: Weldon Cooper Center for Public Service

As the price of housing skyrockets in areas with good schools, children who live in areas with low-cost housing are stuck with low-performing schools. Michael Pope reports.

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Immigrants Look Poised to Play an Increasingly Important Role in Virginia’s Economy

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Credit: Commonwealth Institute

Virginia’s population has one of the largest percentages of immigrants in the country. And, they play a key role in the economy of the Commonwealth. Michael Pope reports.

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Statehouse Elections: Uncontested Races had Lowest Turnout

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According to numbers from the Virginia Public Access Project, turnout in last week’s election was record setting for an off year – nearly 40% of registered voters came to the polls. But those numbers vary across the state. Mallory Noe-Payne reports.

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Va. News: Food Deserts in poor neighborhoods, an order for Free Dirt prompts a Lawsuit

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Owners of a grocery store are finding that providing opportunity in an underserved neighborhood isn’t as simple as just showing up… and a homeowner who says she ordered a little dirt ended up with more than she knew what to do with.

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.

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Virginia Democrats’ Speaker Pick Would be First Woman in Job

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Del. Eileen Filler-Corn (center) and Del Charniele Herring (right) listen to Governor Ralph Northam on Election Night. (Credit Michael Pope)

Virginia is about to get its first female speaker of the House of Delegates.

Michael Pope reports.

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How Much is Too Much for Virginia’s New Democratic Majority?

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Democrats haven’t controlled the House of Delegates for 20 years, so they have a long list of agenda items for the upcoming General Assembly session. (Credit: Michael Pope)

Democrats have a long list of agenda items they want to tackle when the next General Assembly gavels into session. But, they are going to have to think carefully about what they want to accomplish and when. Michael Pope reports.

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Saxis Looks for Solutions to Rising Seas

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Structures made of concrete and oyster shells, like the one in the foreground, are placed in the harbor to create an artificial reef. A homeowner has created their own breakwater in the background, using bricks and concrete debris.
(Credit Pamela D’Angelo)

The tiny Town of Saxis on Virginia’s Eastern Shore is learning to live with water.

Like other communities around the Chesapeake Bay, residents are looking at solutions to the erosion and frequent flooding that comes with climate change.

In part two of her report, Pamela D’Angelo finds out how the town is trying to become resilient.

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Waynesboro’s Bringing Back Wetlands

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Residents can walk along mowed paths and learn about this rich wildlife habitat. (Credit: Sandy Hausman)

Wetlands go by many names — marshes, bogs, swamps and bayous. But whatever they’re called, the fact is they’re disappearing here in Virginia.

More than half have been drained and developed since the first settlers arrived.  Now, however, some communities are reversing that trend.

Sandy Hausman visited one and filed this report.

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Almost an Island, the Eastern Shore Town of Saxis is Fighting Rising Seas

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Yvonne Hickman points out erosion along the shoreline.
(Credit Pamela D’Angelo)

You’ve probably heard of Tangier—the island of 450 residents in danger of being swallowed by the Chesapeake Bay.

But just a few miles away, the tiny Town of Saxis, whose population is about half of Tangier’s, is quietly facing many of the same problems.

Pamela D’Angelo went there to find out how climate change is affecting the community.

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Following a Big Night for Democrats, Governor Northam Looks Ahead

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Governor Ralph Northam addresses members of his cabinet following Tuesday’s statehouse elections. He outlined some of his key priorities for the General Assembly, which Democrats now control for the first time in decades. (Credit: Mallory Noe-Payne / RADIO IQ)

Now that Democrats have unified power in Virginia, they’re looking forward to their legislative agenda. Governor Ralph Northam laid out his priorities at a cabinet meeting Wednesday. Mallory Noe-Payne reports.

The Democratic governor believes his party’s gains on Election Night were largely powered by voters who want common-sense gun laws.

Northam said he plans to push the same gun safety laws he proposed during a special session of the General Assembly earlier this year – a direct response to a May mass shooting in Virginia Beach. Here he is talking about some of those proposals:

Republicans dismissed that special session almost immediately – without deliberating gun safety proposals from Northam and other lawmakers.

The true test for how progressive this new agenda will be comes in January — when the first Democratic-led General Assembly in decades convenes in Richmond.

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Democrats Now Reign Supreme in Northern Virginia

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Credit: NPR

Tuesday’s election swept Democrats into power in both chambers of the General Assembly. But, it also wiped Republicans off the map in Northern Virginia. Michael Pope has details.

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Virginia Democrats Win Control of State Senate and House of Delegates

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  Governor Ralph Northam leads enthusiastic Democrats in a “blue wave” chant, promising action on “common sense gun control.”
(Credit Michael Pope)

Democrats are promising swift action on a host of policy proposals now that they’ve taken control of the General Assembly for the first time in more than two decades.

Michael Pope and Mallory Noe-Payne have reaction from motivated Democrats and also Republicans who say they’ll be watching closely.

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Local Races Tuesday? It Depends

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Voters in counties will see sheriffs and prosecutors on the ballot this year. But voters in cities will not.

Michael Pope explains why.

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A Tip for Election Day: Look Up Your Ballot

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Credit: justgrimes via flickr.com / Creative Commons

Virginians head to the polls Tuesday but many may not recognize the names on their ballot.

As Mallory Noe-Payne reports, hundreds of thousands of voters are in a new district this year.

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Va. News: Daily Progress Newsroom staff vote to Unionize, Washington County Courthouse ballot issue

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Washington County supervisors are finding that a possible relocation of the county court is more complicated than they may have imagined.  And news staff at one newspaper is hoping unionizing will give them greater job security.

 

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.

 

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The One that Didn’t Get Away: The Atlantic’s Largest Menhaden Fishing Fleet Faces Penalties

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Omega Protein’s fleed tied up at Reedville (Credit: Pamela D’Angelo)

Weather is always a factor for fishermen.

So this year, Omega Protein Corporation, which has the largest menhaden fishing fleet on the Atlantic Coast, followed the fish into the Chesapeake Bay rather than risk heavy seas. But in doing so they overstepped harvest limits.

Pamela D’Angelo reports.

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Some Campaigns Report Last-Minute Six-Figure Donations

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Credit: Chris Dlugosz via flickr.com / CC

Last minute money is streaming into some campaigns across Virginia.

Michael Pope has a look at the numbers.

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Mussels in Trouble: Nature’s Water Filters in Massive Die-Off

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  The mighty Pheasantshell mussel, the workhorse water filter of rivers (center) is experiencing mass die-offs in VA and other parts of the world. (Credit Kurt Holtz)

The freshwater mussel is nature’s river cleaner.  But every autumn, for three years running, there’s been a mass die off of one of the most important species.

Biologists say if this continues, it could be a warning sign for global river ecosystems.

Robbie Harris reports from the Virginia Tennessee border.

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A Look at Some Million-Dollar State Senate Races

StateSeal00Voters from across Virginia will head to the polls next week in high-stakes races for the state Senate. Michael Pope has this look at their fundraising efforts.

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With GOP Majority on the Line, Abortion Opponents are Mobilizing in Virginia

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There’s a lot at stake this November — when all 140 state lawmakers are up for election. One issue that’s energizing voters is abortion. Democrats say if they win the majority they’ll push to improve access to healthcare, including abortions.

As Mallory Noe-Payne reports, that has opponents of abortion rights working overtime for Republican candidates.

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Spanberger Drug Prices Bill Likely to Become Law

479px-Abigail_Spanberger,_official_116th_Congress_photo_portraitHow much should the public know about how drug prices are calculated? One Virginia congresswoman is hoping to increase transparency. Michael Pope reports.

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National Interest in Virginia’s Statehouse Elections is Drawing Big Fundraising Numbers

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Credit: NPR

New campaign-finance numbers show certain races for the House of Delegates attracting outsized interest and campaign cash. Michael Pope reports.

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Pre-School: It’s Not Babysitting Anymore

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  Jenna Conway, Virginia’s first Chief Readiness Officer
(Credit Sandy Hausman)

A statewide study found forty percent of Virginia’s 5-year-olds were not ready for kindergarten.

The governor – a pediatric neurologist – and his wife– a teacher– knew some of those kids would fall behind in school and never catch up.

That’s why they hired a chief school readiness officer and launched a 10 million-dollar program to study and fix the problem.

Sandy Hausman has that story.

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Fairfax Scandal Could Soon Play a Role In General Assembly Campaigns

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The sexual assault scandal surrounding Lieutenant Governor Justin Fairfax has now become part of the election campaign for the General Assembly this year. Michael Pope reports.

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Va. News: 80-year old Charges tied to Alexandria Protest dropped, Chesapeake Bay Center closing

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A criminal case that grew out of attempts to integrate a public library has been resolved after 80 years. And an educational center on an island will close as the island goes under water.

Those 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.

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Will Higher Interest Lead to Higher Turnout on Election Day?

voting_rights_3002112985_80b5a719b1It’s election season, but many voters are not tuned into their local races for House of Delegates and state Senate. Michael Pope has this look at what that means for turnout.

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VCU Grant: Helping Doctors Tackle Dangerous Drinking

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(Credit: Edson Hong via flickr.com / CC)

Unhealthy alcohol use is the third most common preventable death in America. And yet studies show that just a 90-second conversation with a doctor could make a difference.

Now Virginia Commonwealth Uuniversity will study how family doctors can do a better job addressing dangerous drinking.

Mallory Noe-Payne reports.

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Two Years Ago This Statehouse Race Was an Exact Tie, Now it’s a Rematch

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  Mailers from the Shelly Simonds and David Yancey campaigns. (Credit Mallory Noe-Payne)

Virginia made national headlines two years ago when a General Assembly race ended in a perfect tie. The state delegate was chosen by pulling a name out of a bowl.

Now that race is a rematch.

Mallory Noe-Payne visited the district to see if voters are following along.

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Online Advertising Continues to Be An Important Tool for Virginia Candidates

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Credit: NPR

If you’ve been on Facebook or YouTube lately, you might have noticed something about an election here in Virginia. Michael Pope explains why.

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Whistleblower: Archeologist Minimized ‘Cultural Richness’ of Site Planned for Water Project

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Credit: Mallory Noe-Payne / RADIO IQ

For centuries, a site in central Virginia was capital of the Monacan Indian Nation. Today it’s owned by Fluvanna and Louisa Counties and officials plan to build a water pump there. They say the infrastructure is needed to provide water to residents and businesses in Zion Crossroads.

Now those plans could be derailed by allegations of misconduct lodged by a former employee of the archaeological firm that tested the site. Mallory Noe-Payne reports.

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A Look at This Year’s General Assembly Political Ads

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A screenshot from the “Chasing Chase” ad. It’s from a California-based political action committee known as Fund Her. (Credit: Fund Her)

If you’ve spent any time in front of a television or a laptop recently, you’ve probably noticed it’s campaign season. Michael Pope reports.

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Census Data: Older Virginians Maintain a Significant Influence Over Elections

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Credit: U.S. Census Bureau

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Credit: U.S. Census Bureau

Voters will head to the polls next month for General Assembly seats all over Virginia, although not all age groups are expected to participate at the same rates. Michael Pope reports.

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So… When Will Those Fall Colors Peak?

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Early in October, a maple leaf shows fall color, on a tree that has already changed for the season. (Credit: Mike Tripp)

Some of the heaviest traffic on Skyline Drive through Shenandoah National Park happens around this time of year, when the leaves begin to turn. But the colors are a little later this fall. Mike Tripp from partner station WMRA took a short hike to find out why.

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Va Sec. of Finance Warns Lawmakers to Be ‘Cautious’ with Budget

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Credit: NPR

In a briefing in Richmond Monday, Virginia’s Secretary of Finance Aubrey Layne told state lawmakers that revenues aren’t keeping pace with expenditures. Mallory Noe-Payne reports.

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Conference in Richmond Brings Together Transgender Community

Logo-With-Date-600x240Hundreds of members, and allies, of the transgender community will be in Richmond this weekend for one of the only trans conferences on the East Coast. Mallory Noe-Payne has details.

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What State Senate and House of Delegates Races Will Be the Most Noteworthy?

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Credit: NPR

Voters will be headed to the polls next month in elections for every seat in the General Assembly. Michael Pope has this preview of some competitive House of Delegates races.

All 40 seats of the Virginia state Senate will also be on the ballot next month, but just like in the House, some seats have little or no competition. Here’s a look at some of the more competitive races in the House.

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