Archive for May, 2022

A look at some of the budget proposals lawmakers will take up next week

Credit: NPR

House and Senate leaders may be on the verge of cutting a deal on the budget. Michael Pope reports.

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Lack of referees squeezes youth sports

18-year-old soccer official Riley Palmer (Credit: Christine Kueter)

It isn’t just COVID-19 that’s made it difficult to find referees for youth sports.

Many older refs have quit, and, as Christine Kueter reports, it’s even harder to find replacements willing to put up with rowdy spectators.

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Pope & Schapiro: New calls for gun violence legislation

As often happens, tragedies in other parts of the country can force Virginia to look inward at its own laws and communities.

Jeff Schapiro of the Richmond Times-Dispatch and Michael Pope have more on the impact of the Texas shooting, as well as new movement on a state budget.

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Remote work remains popular in Virginia, so what does that mean for localities?

Credit: Pew

A significant number of workers in Virginia are still working from home. And as Michael Pope reports, that’s creating challenges and opportunities for local governments.

40% percent of days are worked from home in Virginia, according to Census data compiled by the Pew Charitable Trusts.

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Budget standoffs are not without precedence in Virginia

Lawmakers ended the General Assembly session without passing a budget, and a final deal has yet to be struck. Michael Pope has this report on the history of budget standoffs

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State lawmakers could finally vote on a budget proposal next week

Lawmakers have yet to finalize an agreement on the budget. But as Michael Pope reports, they might be on the verge of cutting a deal.

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Full Disclosure Briefing: Context for Wall Street’s drop

It’s been a brutal spring for the stock markets.  They’ve recorded seven straight weeks of declines.

Roben Farzad, host of the Full Disclosure podcast, and Craig Wright offer some context for worried investors.

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Republicans pick some new faces, with more nomination contests to come

Credit: Jahd Khalil

Republicans are now heading into the fall campaign season with two new candidates. As Michael Pope reports, the candidates secured the nominations in conventions over the weekend.

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Va. News: Clean energy vehicle fleets and a new opera

Fredericksburg has joined a multi-state program designed to help local governments switch over to clean energy vehicles.

And the Virginia court case that ended bans on interracial marriage will be commemorated with an opera.

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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Critics say education report paints inaccurate picture of Virginia schools

(Credit: Virginia Dept. of Education)

Thursday’s report from the state education superintendent painted a dire picture of Virginia’s schools.

Michael Pope reports it’s opened a debate about past decisions and the future.

Editor’s Note: The Virginia Education Association is a financial supporter of Virginia Public Radio.

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Groundbreaking Supreme Court case to get opera treatment

Virginia Opera and the Richmond Symphony have announced plans to create an original opera. 

As Mallory Noe-Payne reports, the project will tell the real-life story of the Virginia couple whose relationship paved the legal pathway for inter-racial and same-sex marriage.

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Pope & Schapiro: New Congressional candidates and signs of movement on the state budget

Virginia’s state budget is weeks past due.  But there are some signs an agreement may be coming.

Jeff Schapiro of the Richmond Times-Dispatch and Michael Pope have more on the week in politics and state government.

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New report suggests Virginia schools are falling behind

Governor ⁦Glenn Youngkin says Virginia’s education system suffers from lowered expectations and a lack of transparency. “That all ends today,” he says. (Credit: Michael Pope)

A new report on the state of Virginia schools shows that gaps are widening and scores are dropping. Michael Pope reports.

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Republicans to choose nominees by convention in three Congressional districts Saturday

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Republicans in several parts of Virginia will be choosing their congressional candidates this weekend. Michael Pope has this preview.

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Group retraces enslaved man’s escape route from Virginia to Connecticut

Group at the start of retracing James Lindsey Smith’s escape at Rice’s Hotel /Hughlett’s Tavern in Heathsville. From left: Kathy Schuder, Jonathan Wibberly, Robenson Charlotin, Caleb Roseme, Alexi Valle, Charles Sydnor, Adam Bowles. (Credit: Pamela D’Angelo)

184 years ago, James Lindsey Smith, an enslaved man in Northumberland County on Virginia’s Northern Neck, made his way to freedom and eventually to Norwich, Connecticut.

Inspired by that journey and Smith’s determination, a group of men from a Norwich church attempted to retrace his steps.

Pamela D’Angelo went with them for part of the journey.

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Full Disclosure Briefing: More intrigue in the tobacco biz

There’s new intrigue in the tobacco business, and it connects back to Virginia.

Roben Farzad, host of the Full Disclosure podcast, and Craig Wright have more on this merger news.

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The Virginia debate over security protection for Supreme Court justices

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Virginia’s governor is clashing with leaders in Fairfax County about security precautions at the home of several Supreme Court justices. Michael Pope reports.

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Va. News: Learning through hip-hop and learning to live with elk

A growing elk population is creating some challenges in Southwestern Virginia. And students at Virginia Tech are using hip-hop to promote learning.

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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Federal judge gives preliminary settlement approval for online predatory lending victims

Credit: MBandman / Flickr, Creative Commons: flickr.com/photos/mbandman/23033039562

The World Wide Web can be a fraught place, especially for people looking for quick cash. As Michael Pope reports, all kinds of companies are trying to skirt Virginia’s law against predatory lending.

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Pope & Schapiro: Abortion and work-from-home backlash

There were some surprises this week for state workers and for one potential state employee.

Jeff Schapiro of the Richmond Times-Dispatch and Michael Pope have more about the week in politics and the General Assembly.

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Advocates warn an eviction crisis is looming

Before the pandemic, Virginia had one of the highest rates for evictions in the country. Now, as Michael Pope reports, some are concerned about a coming crisis.

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Student shares the history of free and enslaved Black men at VMI

VMI’s valedictorian did extensive research on the contribution of African Americans to the military institute.

While African Americans fought in every American war from the revolution on, aspiring Black soldiers could not study at the Virginia Military Institute until 1968.  Still one student – this year’s valedictorian — says they made an important contribution to the school.  Sandy Hausman talked with him and filed this report.

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Higher car prices have Virginia localities weighing tax options

Local governments across Virginia are trying to figure out how to handle the rising value of used cars. As Michael Pope reports, what they decide will influence how much tax you pay.

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One year into a new health clinic, the Upper Mattaponi Tribe is expanding and buying back lands

Upper Mattaponi Chief Frank Adams at the tribal center in King William County. (Credit: Pamela D’Angelo)

Four years ago the Upper Mattaponi Tribe received federal recognition.

Since then it has built a health clinic and purchased lands that were recently accepted into federal trust.

Pamela D’Angelo reports on the significance for the Tribe and nearby communities.

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A historical look: abortion access in Virginia

Credit: Wellness GM / Flickr, Creative Commons: flickr.com/photos/130100316@N04/15728773073/

In 1973, the landmark ruling in Roe versus Wade overturned existing laws that restricted abortions to certain kinds of cases. But as Michael Pope reports, the origin of Virginia’s law prohibiting abortion goes back much further.

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Full Disclosure Briefing: Solar’s present and future in Virginia

Seeing fields full of corn, wheat, or tobacco on a drive through Virginia is not unusual.  But the vistas might increasingly begin to include solar farms.   

Roben Farzad, host of the Full Disclosure podcast, and Craig Wright have more on solar’s present and future.

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Thanks to Virginia’s long early voting period, polls are already open in some primaries

Credit: NPR

Virginia’s congressional primary is not until June. But as Michael Pope reports, the polls are already open.

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Va. News: Tech competition prize, 540 area code calls

Credit: VPAP

If your area code is 540 get ready to do some additional tapping on the keypad when you make a phone call. And some creative Virginia high school students went to New York and came back with a six-figure cash prize from a national tech competition.

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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Virginia school boards: striking a balance between transparency and order

School boards across Virginia are dealing with sometimes hostile parents and potentially dangerous situations. But as Michael Pope reports, they also have to manage the legal requirements for open meetings.

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Pope & Schapiro: The state of abortion and abortion politics in Virginia

The future of abortion access has dominated the political discussions in Washington and beyond this week.

Jeff Schapiro of the Richmond Times-Dispatch and Michael Pope have more on where Virginia stands.

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Should state regulators consider the societal cost?

Some lawmakers are starting to rethink the way regulators approach environmental issues. Michael Pope reports.

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Will Roe leak lead to action at the ballot box?

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The politics of abortion are becoming increasingly intense. But as Michael Pope reports, they don’t always play out as expected.

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Virginia reactions to potential SCOTUS abortion ruling roll in

As the United States Supreme Court appears ready to overturn Roe v. Wade, advocates on both sides of the issue are preparing for how to handle state law on abortion. Michael Pope reports.

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Full Disclosure Briefing: The FDA’s phase-out of menthol cigarettes

Menthol accounts for more than a third of cigarettes sold in the U.S.  And the Food and Drug administration now has a plan to phase out production and sale of the mint flavored cigarettes.

Roben Farzad, host of the Full Disclosure podcast, and Craig Wright have more on the health and business implications of the move.

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Director of NPS says Indigenous partnerships can help solve climate change, conservation challenges

National Park Service Director Charles F. “Chuck” Sams III and Nikki Bass (Nansemond Tribe) during a forum at William & Mary
(Credit: Pamela D’Angelo)

A new institute at the College of William & Mary is teaching students to solve conservation challenges around the world.

This year, Indigenous people were invited to share their knowledge, including the head of the National Park Service Chuck Sams.

Pamela D’Angelo reports.

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One state lawmaker hopes to create his own juvenile justice work group after governor’s veto

Advocates for reforming juvenile justice are regrouping after a veto from the governor. Michael Pope explains why.

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Va. News: Boating accidents and a celebrity circus

While boating accidents are down across Virginia this year there’s an opposite trend at Smith Mountain Lake.  And a celebrity civil trial in Northern Virginia has taken on a circus-like appearance, complete with animals.

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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