Archive for September, 2017

Congressman Garrett Helps Resettle Sudanese Refugees in Virginia

Thomas Garrett, Mark Meadows

Representative Thomas Garrett, R-VA, is currently in Sudan on a diplomatic mission to resettle two Christian pastors and family members. (Credit: AP Photo / Manuel Balce Ceneta)

A Congressman from Virginia is in Africa this week, working to secure the release of two Sudanese pastors imprisoned by their government. Seven of the pastors’ family members have already arrived in Virginia as refugees. Mallory Noe-Payne has details.

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Amazon is Just the Latest Topic of Discussion for Virginia’s Gubernatorial Candidates

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Credit: AP Photo / Michel Spingler

Will Virginia become home to a second headquarters for Amazon? That’s a question that’s consuming economic development officials right now. But it’s also become an issue on the campaign trail for the Executive Mansion. Michael Pope has the story.

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Just Like Any Other Candidates, Gillespie and Northam Have Distinct Weaknesses to Overcome

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Republican Ed Gillespie (left) and Democrat Ralph Northam at a televised debate in Northern Virginia earlier this week. (Credit: Bonnie Jo Mount / The Washington Post via AP, Pool)

Every candidate has a something to overcome. So what are the weaknesses the two major party candidates for governor have heading into the fall election season? Michael Pope has the story.

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Lawmakers Consider Public Awareness Campaign on Childhood Trauma

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Adverse Childhood Experiences can lead to increased health risks as an adult. (Credit: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention / Robert Wood Johnson Foundation)

Virginia’s lawmakers are preparing for another busy legislative year. One topic on the agenda: how to better serve children who face violence or trauma at home. Mallory Noe-Payne reports.

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Northam, Gillespie Spar Over Taxes, Healthcare, Confederate Monuments

Ralph Northam, Ed Gillespie

Ralph Northam (left) and Ed Gillespie shake hands before Tuesday night’s debate in McLean. (Credit: Bonnie Jo Mount / The Washington Post via AP, Pool) 

The major party candidates for governor met for a televised debate Tuesday night.  They sparred over taxes, healthcare and Confederate monuments, among other topics. Michael Pope reports on the candidates’ tax plans.

Both candidates appeared to dodge some issues. Northam’s apparent support for two proposed controversial natural gas pipelines was an issue that dogged him during the primary, when Tom Perriello offered clear opposition to the plan. Gillespie also struggled with a question about the healthcare proposal now under consideration in Congress. Michael Pope reports on the candidates’ responses about pipelines, healthcare and Confederate monuments.

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The Latest Episode in the On-Going Soap Opera of Health Care Providers in Virginia

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After announcing it would be leaving Virginia’s ACA marketplace, Anthem has now reversed course and will offer coverage next year. (Credit: AP Photo / Michael Conroy, File)

Following the latest twists and turns in the ongoing saga of the Affordable Care Act can be difficult. As Michael Pope reports, that’s because the story has more twists and turns than a soap opera.

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Education Programs Aim to Keep Migrant Families Together

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Museum Director Monika Bridgforth meets with children role-playing at the exhibit of the Cobb Island Hotel front desk. (Credit: Pamela D’Angelo)

Each year migrant workers travel up the coast spending part of the season in Virginia’s tomato and potato fields and poultry houses. Moving means their children miss school, so federal grants allow states to fund summer school programs to keep them caught up. The Eastern Shore has Virginia’s largest population of migrant workers, but a majority are no longer able to bring their families. Pamela D’Angelo reports.

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Northam Holds Slight Edge Over Gillespie Ahead of Prime-Time Debate

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Credit: AP Photo / Steve Helber

Virginia’s two major party candidates will go head to head Tuesday night in a prime-time face off, a televised debate that indicates the official start of the hottest part of campaign season. Libertarian candidate Cliff Hyra will not be participating in the debate, but he will be on the ballot in every jurisdiction. Michael Pope reports.

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‘This is the Beginning of Bringing People Together,’ Residents Express Optimism After Richmond Rally

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Adria Scharf of the Richmond Peace Education Center hosting a unity rally at Richmond’s Maggie Walker statue. (Credit: Mallory Noe-Payne / RADIO IQ)

About half a dozen Neo-Confederates came from out of state to Richmond Saturday, stirring tensions and drawing hundreds of counter protesters. Many of the anti-racism protesters began their day at a unity rally at the city’s Maggie Walker monument. Mallory Noe-Payne covered the rally and has this report.

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Va News Topics: Declining Hunting Interest in VA, Passport Applications

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Credit: Virginia Public Access Project

Interest in hunting appears to be on the decline in Virginia. And, when local government offices decide to stop processing passport applications things get less convenient for people planning to travel. Virginia’s Augusta County is a recent example. 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.

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Portraying the Real Appalachia: New Kids’ TV Show Explores Arts and Science in Our Backyard

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A still from the Penny P trailer.

A Blacksburg film maker says that for too long, the media’s represented Appalachia only in negative stereotypes. He wants to change that image with a new children’s television show that explores the region’s assets. It’s a blend of arts, science, and Appalachian culture that teaches kids about the amazing things you can find in your own backyard.  Robbie Harris visited the set and prepared this report.

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Richmond Preps for Pro-Confederate Monument Rally

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Richmond Police Chief Alfred Durham at a community meeting Thursday night ahead of Saturday’s planned rally. (Credit: Mallory Noe-Payne / RADIO IQ)

Richmond is preparing for a pro-Confederate monument rally organized by an out-of-state group. The event is scheduled for this Saturday at at the Robert E. Lee Monument. Organizers have refused to cancel despite a ban from the state. Mallory Noe-Payne reports.

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Bay’s Osprey Population in Decline… Again

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Osprey family at Lynnhven Inlet, VA (Credit: Reese Lukei)

The Chesapeake Bay is host to the largest breeding population of osprey in the world. They tell us when spring is here and give us clues about the bay’s health. Now, as osprey begin their annual migration to Central and South America, biologists say there’s been a decline in population during the last few years. Pamela D’Angelo reports for Chesapeake: A Journalism Collaborative.

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.

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Wildlife Academy to Instruct the Public

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Director Ed Clark hopes to train thousands of people in how to care for injured animals.

The Wildlife Center of Virginia has trained thousands of people over the years at its high-tech veterinary clinic in Waynesboro, and now the center is branching out – offering to train animal lovers around the world. Sandy Hausman has details.

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Percentage Of Virginians With Health Insurance Continues To Increase

The latest round of Census numbers includes some positive news about health insurance in Virginia. Those gains are threatened by uncertainty in Washington, though. Michael Pope reports.

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Guilty Pleas End 42-Year-Old Cold Case

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Sheila (left) and Katherine Lyon (Credit: Montgomery Co., MD Police)

One of the oldest cold case prosecutions in the country’s history ended Tuesday in Bedford when Lloyd Welch, Jr. pleaded guilty to the abduction and murder of two sisters. David Seidel reports.

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Money Continues to Roll Into this Year’s Statewide Election

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Billionaire environmentalist Tom Steyer announces a new partnership with the Democratic National Committee and several immigrant rights groups at a press conference in Falls Church. (Credit: Michael Pope)

Election 2017 may end up being one of the most expensive races in Virginia history. This week, Democrats are receiving a major infusion of cash. Michael Pope has details.

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Dealing With A Confederate Past is Nothing New to Lexington

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A statue commemorating Stonewall Jackson on VMI’s campus in Lexington. (Credit: Rob / Flickr)

Cities across the country are grappling with removing Confederate symbols. And perhaps nowhere is Confederate past and present more intertwined than in Lexington. Jessie Knadler looks at how the issues that spilled over into violence in Charlottesville last month have been playing out in Lexington for years.

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Arlington Remembers 9/11 Attacks

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A U.S. flag unfurled at the Pentagon earlier today on the 16th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. (Credit: AP Photo / Jacquelyn Martin)

This year marks the 16th anniversary of the 9/11 attack, which is still quite raw in Arlington. Michael Pope is on the scene with the story.

 

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Va News Topics: New Richmond High School, Amazon to Virginia Beach?

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Credit: Virginia Public Access Project

Despite some apparent disadvantages, Virginia Beach has joined the competition for Amazon’s new headquarters. And, a new high school in Richmond is breaking with tradition to try and give its students a head start on the future. 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.

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Gillespie Floods Airwaves, Outspends Northam in Television Time

Ed Gillespie

Republican gubernatorial candidate Ed Gillespie, who is outspending his opponent Ralph Northam in television ad spots. (Credit: AP Photo / Steve Helber)

If you’ve been watching TV, you’ve probably noticed it’s election season. This fall, candidates for governor have been flooding the airwaves with commercials. But as Michael Pope reports, one candidate is spending more than the other.

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Ahead of November Election, Virginia Scraps Use of ‘Hackable’ Voting Machines

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Hackers participate in the computer science conference DefCon in Las Vegas in 2011. At this year’s conference, hackers attempted to break into various voting machines. (Credit: AP Photo / Isaac Brekken)

With only two months until election day, officials in Virginia have decided fully-electronic voting machines aren’t safe. Amid growing cyber-security threats, the Board of Elections is forcing localities to stop using the of the touch screen machines that leave no paper trail. Mallory Noe-Payne reports.

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Education Takes Center Stage at NAACP Governor’s Forum

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Credit: Flickr / Creative Commons

Two of Virginia’s candidates for Governor were in Richmond Thursday at a forum hosted by Virginia’s NAACP. Mallory Noe-Payne was there and filed this report.

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Should Undocumented Suspects Be Held Without a Warrant? Candidates for Governor Disagree

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Credit: AP Photo / Steve Helber

Virginia may not have any local governments that are willing to defy federal immigration law. But that doesn’t necessarily mean the commonwealth doesn’t have any sanctuary cities, depending on how that term is defined. And, as Michael Pope reports, the debate has become a flashpoint in the race for governor.

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Optima Pulls Out of Rural Virginia, Leaving 62,000 Marketplace Enrollees Without Insurance Options

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Credit: Optima Health

This week, yet another insurer pulled out of the marketplace for subsidized health insurance created by the Affordable Care Act. As Michael Pope reports, this announcement has more drastic consequences than the previous ones.

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My Purpose Here is to Get an Education: More than 1,200 DACA Recipients Attend Virginia Colleges

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Yanet speaks at a rally supporting DACA students at VCU. (Credit: Mallory Noe-Payne / RADIO IQ)

More than 1,200 DACA students are enrolled in Virginia’s colleges. Officials at VCU, UVA and Virginia Tech have all spoken in support of those students after President Trump decided to suspend the amnesty program that allowed many of them to go college in the first place. Students at VCU in Richmond protested that decision this week. It was there that we met one DACA recipient. Mallory Noe-Payne reports.

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Record Number of Openly LGBTQ Candidates Seek Virginia House Seats

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House of Delegates candidates Dawn Adams and Ben Hixon. Adams and Hixon are two of five openly lesbian, gay or transgender candidates running across the state. (Credit: Brad Kutner)

Virginia has a record number of openly lesbian, gay and transgender candidates running for house seats this November. It could offer a dramatic change of policy… if they can get constituents to come to the door. From Richmond and Culpepper, Brad Kutner has more.

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If Approved, Virginia’s Gubernatorial Candidates Support the Pipelines

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Pipeline opponents outside of an environmental forum in Richmond Wednesday, where both candidates for governor say they’ll support two controversial natural gas pipelines. (Credit: Mallory Noe-Payne / RADIO IQ)

Two of Virginia’s candidates for Governor were in Richmond Wednesday at an environmental forum hosted by the Chesapeake Bay Foundation. Republican Ed Gillespie and Democrat Ralph Northam talked rising oceans, energy and oysters. Mallory Noe-Payne reports.

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Women Demand Better Care Behind Bars

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Sherry Richburg with her new puppy, Prissy.

In 2014, the Fluvanna Correctional Center for Women agreed to settle a lawsuit over its failure to provide adequate medical care for prisoners, but the Legal Aid Justice Center is back in court this week – asking a judge to step-in.  Sandy Hausman met one of the plaintiffs – a 63-year-old woman from Lynchburg – and filed this report.

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What the Loss of DACA Will Mean For Virginia

Carlos Esteban

Carlos Esteban, 31, of Woodbridge, Virginia, a nursing student and recipient of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, known as DACA, rallies with others in support of DACA outside of the White House Tuesday. (Credit: AP Photo / Jacquelyn Martin)

President Trump’s decision to rescind the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program will have major consequences to Virginia’s economy. Michael Pope has this look at the numbers.

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Social Media and Lawmakers: What is Public Record and What Isn’t?

foia_stockAre social media posts public records? That was the question in a recent legal case that could have far reaching consequences for public records in Virginia. Michael Pope has the story.

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Va News Topics: Oak Trees Cut Down, Theme Park Closure

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Credit: Virginia Public Access Project

Residents of a Norfolk neighborhood were taken by surprise when the city cut down a stand of 200-year-old oak trees. And, Virginia’s tourism industry convinced the state to change the law decades ago so theme parks and hotels would have enough teenage workers to stay open every day through Labor Day, but this year one of those parks shut down for part of the final week of August. 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.

 

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Salary Growth in Virginia is Lagging Behind National Average

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The Rockingham County Courthouse in Harrisonburg. Cities like Harrisonburg and Staunton are seeing the largest hourly wage growth across Virginia, while Roanoke and Charlottesville are lagging behind. (Credit: Taber Andrew Bain / Flickr)

Virginia may have emerged from the recession, but that doesn’t mean it’s out of the woods yet. New numbers from the federal government show paychecks are still lagging behind. Michael Pope reports.

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Republicans and Democrats Use Muslim Holiday to Campaign

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Muslim men pray at the All Dulles Area Muslim Society Center in Sterling. (Credit: AP Photo / Sait Serkan Gurbuz)

The Labor Day weekend marks the beginning of fall and the start of an intense political season culminating in the November election. But it also represents a major milestone for Muslims, one that Republicans and Democrats are both using to help get their message across to an important voting constituency in Northern Virginia. Michael Pope reports.

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Republicans Aim to Keep Governor’s Race Local

Ed Gillespie

Republican candidate for governor Ed Gillespie has kept his distance from the president while Democrat work actively to tie the two together. (Credit: AP Photo / Steve Helber)

Only 38% of Virginians approve of President Donald Trump’s performance in office. His low approval rating has the state GOP in a bind, as they look towards a tight governor’s race this fall.

Pundits across the country are billing the race as the next referendum on the President. But Virginia’s Republican Party is trying to keep the focus on the state.

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