Archive for October, 2015
As we’ve been hearing this week — Tuesday’s state-wide elections will determine Virginia’s lawmakers for the next two years. Also at stake: which party will control Virginia’s State Senate. But just what is the effect of who controls the state senate? As Mallory Noe-Payne reports, maybe not all that much.
Spiders get their ‘fifteen minutes of fame’ every Halloween as one of the scary symbols of the holiday, but there’s nothing to be frightened of in this report. As Robbie Harris tells us, the webs they weave may hold the key to some new, environmentally safe products.
We’ve been looking this week at critical political races happening in the state this election year — races that could determine which party has control of the state senate. What happens with those seats will depend largely on who comes out to vote. Mallory Noe-Payne reports on the struggle to get people to the ballots.
Virginia’s congressional delegation is divided over a bipartisan budget deal that greatly reduces any chance of a government shutdown for two years. Matt Laslo has this report from Washington on what’s dividing Virginia lawmakers.
Voters across Virginia will be heading to the polls next week. At stake? Each of the state’s 140 lawmakers that make up the General Assembly. You may not have heard much about it though, because many seats are uncontested and not generating much attention. But some state senate races are the exception. Who wins these races could determine the shape of Virginia politics for the next two years.
Virginia Beach schools are facing a growing debt because of student lunches that are served but not paid for…and a Northern Virginia woman believes a specialty license plate approved and issued by the state should be recalled. Those have been among the most read stories over the past week at the Virginia Public Access Project’s VaNews link on vpap.org. Fred Echols has more.
The Virginia Department of Corrections has more than 30-thousand people locked up in state prisons, local and regional jails, each costing taxpayers an average of more than $32,000 a year. Those who committed crimes after 1994 are not eligible for parole, but Governor Terry McAuliffe has appointed a commission to study that situation and make recommendations. Sandy Hausman reports on the issues that group may tackle during its final meeting today.
If it’s been a while since you voted, you may notice some changes this Election Day. Most precincts in Virginia on November 3rd will be using a mix of new machines-and one old tradition to count your ballot. Joe Staniunas reports.
Last March Sweet Briar College’s then Board and President announced that due to insurmountable financial challenges the school was closing. The news not only shocked the small Amherst County liberal arts school but alumnae from across the country. They rallied, formed Saving Sweet Briar, and through legal action and a new board and president the school stayed open. Tab O’Neal reports that while the doors are open, the future holds a lot of challenges.
Doctors at the University of Virginia have developed a new test that can predict, at an early age, who is most likely to develop heart disease or diabetes, perhaps making it possible to head off those problems. Sandy Hausman has that story.
Governor McAuliffe predicts Virginia will have 1.5 million job openings in the next decade — fueled by the retirement of 900,000 baby boomers. He hopes to see 600,000 new positions but says it isn’t always easy to attract new business to the Commonwealth. Sandy Hausman has that story.
With two weeks left before election day… candidates for Richmond’s contested 10th district Senate seat Tuesday night. But as Mallory Noe-Payne reports, with this critical seat, behind every student who follows local elections…there are a couple more who don’t.
Environmental projects in Virginia are getting a big boon. The state is receiving nearly $8 million in funding to help clean the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries. In Richmond, Mallory Noe-Payne reports.
Virginia’s chapter of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws met this weekend to plot a strategy for decriminalizing the drug and legalizing it for medical use. As Sandy Hausman reports, they hope to tip the balance in Virginia’s senate by targeting one lawmaker who opposes their cause.
Virginia Republican Congressman Bob Goodlatte is pushing bipartisan legislation to overhaul the nation’s criminal justice system. Matt Laslo reports on the effort which has the support of the White House.
There’s controversy in Fairfax over cars being ticketed for expired inspection stickers while waiting to be inspected…and some Virginia community college students have found a way around the high cost of textbooks. Those have been among the most read stories over the past week at the Virginia Public Access Project’s VaNews link on vpap.org. Fred Echols has more.
Governor Terry McAuliffe signed an executive order today… giving local law enforcement more resources to prosecute gun crimes. It’s part of a push by the governor to do what he can to crack down on gun violence in the state. Mallory Noe-Payne reports.
One year after a massive climate march in New York, thousands gathered in 170 cities across the nation – including Richmond, Roanoke, Warrenton and Charlottesville, where Sandy Hausman was listening.
For the first time in years the health of Virginia’s largest river is considered above average. That’s the word from the The James River Association. The non profit advocacy group released its annual State of the James Report. Mallory Noe-Payne has more.
The James River Association has made the report accessible and interactable online — you can visit www.stateofthejames.org
Virginia recently celebrated farm-to-school week, highlighting the connection between farmers around the state and what’s on the tray in the lunch line. But for one private school in Richmond, farm-to-table is more than just one week out of the year. Mallory Noe-Payne has the story of a lunch program that could be the model for something big.
Science plays a growing role in crime detection and prosecution, but experts at four universities say a lot can go wrong in the lab, and many people may be wrongly convicted based on bogus claims. Now, the University of Virginia is joining three other schools to do research and share findings on the subject as Sandy Hausman reports.
The recent death of an American Airlines pilot on a flight from Phoenix to Boston made headlines. Medical emergencies on board commercial flights are rare, but when they occur, treatment can be difficult. A University of Virginia physician thought it might be helpful to write an article on the subject. Sandy Hausman looks at some key points he makes in the New England Journal of Medicine.
Last week, Richmond County Board of Supervisors delayed their vote on whether to grant Diatomite of America rezoning to build a commercial resort, championship golf course and more than 700 houses on 975 acres of pristine forests cliffs that overlook the Rappahannock River. Pamela D’Angelo reports.
There’s been strong public opposition to plans for a pipeline to carry natural gas 560 miles — from the fracking fields of West Virginia to customers in Virginia and North Carolina. Now, Dominion Virginia Power says it will change the path of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline — a change that could affect property owners in Augusta County. Mallory Noe-Payne reports.
Organizers and shoppers at one of Virginia’s biggest gun shows make their feelings known in the wake of a mass shooting in Oregon….and a new sport looking for room to grow is meeting some resistance from a more established one in Virginia. Those have been among the most read stories over the past week at the Virginia Public Access Project’s VaNews link at vpap.org. Fred Echols has more.
Fones Cliffs along the Rappahannock River in Richmond County is a favorite place for bald eagles to gather, to sleep, and to watch for their next meal in the river and marshes below. But a plan for a commercial development is pitting conservationists against entrepreneurs.
Virginia lawmakers say one topic that will again be discussed during the upcoming General Assembly session is improving healthcare in the Commonwealth. But that goal remains difficult when a large portion of the bright students who attend the state’s six medical schools are forced to move elsewhere due to a lack of residency slots. One critical point of discussion will be how to open up more slots AND pay for them.
With a changing of the guard afoot at the U-S Capitol, Speaker John Boehner’s sudden resignation is revealing deep disagreements within the Republican Party…and it’s on display in the Virginia congressional delegation. Matt Laslo reports.
In one month, Virginians will head to the polls to elect all 140 members of the House of Delegates and state Senate. But according to a recent Christopher Newport University survey, only 34 percent of voters say they have followed news about the General Assembly candidates—even though partisan control of the closely divided Senate is at stake. Although some of the seats are fiercely contested, a lack of competition throughout the state may be part of the problem.
Arlington recently opened a state-of-the-art homeless shelter. The facility occupies two floors of a county-owned building next to the courthouse. As Armando Trull with WAMU reports, the shelter reflects a compromise between Arlington’s goal to end homelessness and nearby property owners’ concerns about quality of life.
Virginia has begun distributing the funds from a $17.5 million federal grant to expand and enhance the Commonwealth’s early childhood education efforts. As Virginia Public Radio’s Tommie McNeil reports, Governor McAuliffe toured one of the schools that received money for its program and explained that the funds will be awarded to 11 high-need school divisions.
Amherst County supervisors have some decisions to make about allowing gunfire in residential neighborhoods…and a futuristic solution is being offered to ease highway congestion in traffic-choked Arlington. Those have been among the most read stories over the past week at the Virginia Public Access Project’s VaNews link on vpap.org. More on that from Fred Echols.
Virginia has begun distributing the funds from a $17.5 million federal grant to expand and enhance the Commonwealth’s early childhood education efforts. Governor McAuliffe toured one of the schools that received money for its program and explained that the funds will be awarded to 11 high-need school divisions.