Archive for May, 2017
Virginia Lawmakers React to Trump’s Latest Budget Proposal
President Trump unveiled his budget this week and it’s being met with mixed reactions from Virginia lawmakers. Matt Laslo has the story from the Capitol.
Virginia Employment Numbers: Charlottesville Leads, Bristol Trails
New numbers from the Bureau of Labor statistics show Virginia is steadily adding jobs, although some parts of the Commonwealth are growing much faster than others. Michael Pope is digging into the numbers.
Reversing Centuries of Logging Damage at the Great Dismal Swamp
Previous presidents weren’t exactly environmentally friendly. Roosevelt’s Civil Conservation Corps dug ditches to drain pristine New England marshes so farmers could harvest salt marsh hay. Here in Virginia, George Washington drained the swamp, literally, to log the Great Dismal Swamp. Now, slowly, the damage is being undone with the help of Hurricane Sandy funding. Pamela D’Angelo reports.
Accidental Shooting Prompts Questions Over Virginia’s Gun Laws
The death of a 4-year old in Orange County is sparking a new discussion about gun safety. Michael Pope has the story.
Health Insurance Providers Face Tough Decisions Amid ACA Uncertainties
Until this week, Virginia’s marketplace for subsidized health-insurance has been relatively healthy, with seven providers offering plans next year in all parts of the state. But as Michael Pope reports, that all could change in the next few weeks.
Bay Advocates Fear Federal Cuts Could Jeopardize Progress
Chesapeake Bay advocates got a shock when President Donald Trump proposed zeroing EPA’s Chesapeake Bay program out of the federal budget. That shock eased some when Congress agreed to a stopgap spending measure that saved the money for now. But, that’s only good until September. Reporters from Chesapeake: A Journalism Collaborative decided to see what the loss of that money would mean in practical terms for the Bay clean-up. Joel McCord, from WYPR in Baltimore, starts with a look at stream restoration efforts.
Chesapeake: A Journalism Collaborative is funded with grant support from the Clayton Baker Trust, The Bancroft Foundation, Michael and Ann Hankin, The Jim and Patty Rouse Foundation, The Rob and Elizabeth Tyler Foundation, and the Mid-Shore Community Foundation.
Fluvanna County Officials are Looking Into Adding to Confederate Monument, Not Removing
Local governments across Virginia are reconsidering their Confederate memorials — trying to figure out if they should be removed or relocated. But, as Michael Pope reports, one county is engaged in a different kind of discussion — adding a new monument to an existing Confederate statue.
New Video Looks to Help Stop Opioid Epidemic, But Is It Enough?
Democratic Attorney General Mark Herring is trying to help law enforcement officers across Virginia combat opioid abuse with a new video. But will it do any good? Michael Pope has details.
Untold and Overlooked: Remembering the Stories of Jefferson’s Poplar Forest Slaves
This past weekend, Poplar Forest paid tribute to the lives and stories of the 95 African-Americans enslaved by Thomas Jefferson there, and the legacies they left behind. At the center of it all was Joseph McGill, founder of the Slave Dwelling Project. Jordy Yager has this report.
Va News Topics: Richmond Interest Questions, Montgomery County Biblical Decals
Richmond officials are questioning a state law that’s costing the city nearly a half-million dollars in interest on a business tax overpayment. And, the Sheriff of Montgomery County says he will remove a Biblical quote from his department’s patrol cars. Those have been among the most read stories over the past week on the Virginia Public Access Project’s Va News link at vpap.org. Fred Echols has more.
Virginia Hospitals Prepared for Computer Virus
After a cyber attack paralyzed Britain’s public healthcare system, Virginia’s Hospital and Healthcare Association rushed to assure patients that their information is safe. Sandy Hausman reports on nearly two dozen recommendations designed to prevent hackers from getting into medical information systems here.
Virginia Gov. Proposes Cap and Trade Program, Praised for “Standing Up to Trump”
As the federal government looks to roll back the Clean Power Plan, Virginia’s Governor is stepping in. Terry McAuliffe says the state will plow forward on its own to lower pollution, and combat climate change. Mallory Noe-Payne reports.
Early 20th Century African American Portraits Tell a Tale of Two Worlds
15 years ago a stash of African American photographic portraits taken in the early 1900’s were discovered on a farm in the Northern Neck region of the Chesapeake Bay. And while they have not been identified, they provide clues to life in a rural, African American community 40 years after the Civil War. Now, there’s an effort to put them into a permanent exhibit. Pamela D’Angelo reports.
Is the FBI Hacking Your Computer From A Server In Virginia?
Is the FBI hacking your computer? That’s not an unreasonable question considering recent actions of bureau. Michael Pope has this look at how a server in Virginia was used to hack into hundreds of computers.
Bill to Recognize Virginia Indian Tribes Passes House
Virginia Indian tribes have been working to gain federal recognition since the 1970’s, so far unsuccessfully. But this week in Congress both the House and Senate took action that is giving supporters of the effort new hope. Michael Pope has the story.
Historically Black Cemeteries to Receive State Funding
Every year since 1997, Virginia taxpayer money goes to repairing and restoring the graves of Confederate soldiers. Now, for the first time, the state has approved funding for history that has long been ignored: African-American cemeteries. Mallory Noe-Payne has more.
Democratic Candidates Debate in Norfolk
Lieutenant Governor Ralph Northam and former congressman Tom Perriello met in Norfolk last night for another debate before the June primary. As Michael Pope reports, a number of topics ranging from President Donald Trump to marijuana decriminalization were discussed.
Northam and Perriello also discussed the War on Drugs, something they both agreed needs reform.
Corey Stewart Denounces His Opponents, Not White Nationalist Rally
This weekend an alt-right group, widely associated with white nationalism, marched to a Confederate statue in Charlottesville — carrying torches and chanting. The rally made national headlines and now Virginia’s candidates in the upcoming race for governor are weighing in. Mallory Noe-Payne reports.
Charlottesville City Council, Mayor Respond to Weekend Rally: “We Have Work to Do”
Charlottesville City Council on Monday evening expressed outrage at a white nationalist rally over the weekend that received international attention. Jordy Yager reports.
Here’s What Virginia’s Lawmakers are Saying About Trump’s Tax Plan
President Trump has dropped an ambitious overhaul of the nation’s tax system. As correspondent Matt Laslo reports, Virgnia lawmakers are giving the plan mixed reviews.
Counter Protest in Charlottesville to “Take Back Lee Park” Follows Alt-Right Rally
Three people were arrested Sunday night after a mostly peaceful protest in downtown Charlottesville turned momentarily violent, spilling out into the streets. Jordy Yager has details.
Va News Topics: Rural Internet Access, Gun Sales
High-speed internet has been slow to arrive for rural residents in most states and Virginia is no exception. And, gun sales were off sharply in the first three months of 2017. The change of administrations in Washington could be one reason for that. Those have been among the most read stories over the past week on the Virginia Public Access Project’s Va News link at vpap.org. Fred Echols reports.
Will Virginia’s Governor Take More Action to Protect Environment?
As Democratic Governor Terry McAuliffe faces his final few months in office, environmental groups are pushing him to take action on climate change. Michael Pope reports.
A Look Into Virginia’s Candidate Selection Process
Posted by Nick Gilmore in Virginia's News on May 12, 2017
Democrats and Republicans will head to the polls in June for a primary for statewide offices. But voters in 26 House of Delegates districts will also be selecting candidates. It’s part of a patchwork of different nominating methods, including conventions and caucuses. Michael Pope has this look into how this all came about.
Dueling Tax Plans: GOP Candidates for Governor Lay Out Proposals
The three Republicans running for governor have each outlined a tax plan, and they couldn’t be more different. Michael Pope looks into the numbers.
Democratic Candidates for Governor Talk College, Taxes and Trump
The two Democrats running for governor are engaged in a tough battle for the nomination to take on Republicans. But during a televised debate this week, both were eager to take the fight to the Republicans.
One point of agreement between the two candidates is that students should receive two free years of community college. However, Tuesday night’s debate revealed sharp disagreement over how to pay for it. Michael Pope reports.
Archaeologists Warn Climate Change Is Eroding Historic Sites
Climate change has taken a toll on Virginia coasts, but property owners aren’t the only ones losing ground. Archaeologists say clues to Virginia’s early history are rapidly disappearing. Sandy Hausman has details.
Republicans Welcome Large Number of Democrat Challengers in House of Delegates Races
Democrats are having a banner year fielding candidates in House of Delegates races, including many challenges to incumbent Republicans in deeply red parts parts of Virginia. Leaders in the GOP say bring it on. Michael Pope reports.
Va News Topics: Kentucky Traffic Citations, Virginia Beach Black Neighborhood
A town mayor in Virginia coalfields caused a flap when he appeared to suggest people from nearby Kentucky were being targeted for traffic citations. And, a few dozen families in Virginia Beach are trying to hold on as their historically black neighborhood is slowly disappearing. Those have been among the most read stories over the past week on the Virginia Public Access Project’s Va News link at vpap.org. More now from Fred Echols.
Shenandoah Valley Program Aims to Share Life-Saving Overdose Drug
In response to Virginia’s opioid crisis, which the State Health Commissioner declared a “public health emergency” last year, counties across the Commonwealth are stepping up their efforts to wage war against fatal overdoses. A new program in Central Shenandoah makes it easier for locals to stop an overdose in its tracks. Jessie Knadler reports.
Democratic Candidates for Governor Debate Taxes and Education in Roanoke
The two Democrats running for governor met in Roanoke Thursday night for a debate. Michael Pope reports that the two have differing viewpoints on tax reform.
The pair also got in a back and forth over about expanded higher education and how to pay for it.
Republican Candidate For Lieutenant Governor Launches TV Ad Featuring Terrorists
The Republican primary for lieutenant governor is heating up, and one candidate is hitting the airwaves with a commercial aimed at frightening voters. Michael Pope reports.
Sunscreen: Necessity or Nuisance?
Beach weather approaches but don’t reach for that sunscreen just yet. An Amherst County scientist found that a common ingredient in sunscreen may be killing all kinds of marine life and poses a risk to humans as well. Jessie Knadler reports.
Republicans Have Lowest Number of House Candidates in Years
Voters are only weeks away from selecting General Assembly candidates in the June primaries. And Republicans are fielding the smallest number of candidates for House of Delegates races in more than a decade. Michael Pope has the story.
Economic Development Effort in Southwest to Be Funded With Private Funds Rather Than State Money
Lawmakers from the Southwest corner of Virginia are disappointed this week after Governor Terry McAuliffe vetoed a bill that would have created a new economic development initiative to help out-of-work coal miners. Michael Pope has the story.
Va News Topics: Bringing Back the Bay Scallop, Restoring Hampton Roads Oysters
The internet is playing a part in bringing back the Bay Scallop, a shellfish that had disappeared from Virginia while another preservation effort is restoring wild oysters in the inland waters of the Hampton Roads area. Those have been among the most read stories over the past week on the Virginia Public Access Project’s Va News link at vpap.org. Fred Echols has details.
White House Pushes Healthcare, and Some Virginia Lawmakers Change Their Tune
Virginia Republicans are coming around on the new plan to revive the effort to repeal and replace Obamacare. Matt Laslo has the details from Washington.
Democratic Primary Reveals New Fault Line in Virginia Politics: Millennials Versus Establishment
The hotly contested Democratic primary for governor this June is exposing a fault line, a growing generational divide inside the party. Michael Pope talked with millennial Democrats to get their view of the primary, and what they want from politics.