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Pope & Schapiro: Tax cuts, abortion restrictions & the Parole Board

A divided General Assembly is proving to be a hurdle for two of the governor’s biggest legislative priorities.

Jeff Schapiro, political columnist at the Richmond Times-Dispatch, and Michael Pope recap the week in politics and state government.

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Full Disclosure Briefing: Virginia’s big data center deal

Digital economies still require brick-and-mortar infrastructure.  And a big new announcement from Amazon and the state is a good example.

Roben Farzad, host of public radio’s Full Disclosure, and Weekend Edition host Craig Wright have more on the plans and the push-back.

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Va. News: Microtransit & cutting class

Albemarle County will use a new grant to try out what it hopes will be a better way of providing public transportation.  And it seems quite a few college students who got used to remote education during the pandemic are less than enthusiastic about going class.

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 David Poole.

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UVA announces new biotech center

The University of Virginia has announced plans for a new $300 million biotech center that will produce and test new treatments for many diseases. 

The center could break ground in a matter of months and is already recruiting the first of 100 new scientists as Sandy Hausman reports.

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Pope & Schapiro: Youngkin, Ford and the CCP

An about-face on a potential economic development win and a tabloid-style scandal are making headlines at the capital.

Jeff Schapiro, political columnist at the Richmond Times-Dispatch, and Michael Pope recap the week in politics and state government.

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Full Disclosure Briefing: What is tipflation?

We’re used to tipping for certain services like meals or haircuts.  But more and more digital checkout screens are now suggesting a tip.

Roben Farzad, host of public radio’s Full Disclosure, and Craig Wright talk about the growing trend.

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Pope & Schapiro: Recapping the first few days of the General Assembly session and what might come next

The first few days of the 2023 General Assembly session are in the books. 

Jeff Schapiro, political columnist at the Richmond Times-Dispatch, and Michael Pope recap what’s happened so far and what might come next.

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In State of the Commonwealth address, Youngkin calls for tax cuts, 15-week abortion ban

Gov. Glenn Youngkin

Governor Glenn Youngkin says Virginia needs to catch up. 

David Seidel has details from Youngkin’s State of the Commonwealth address,

Governor Glenn Youngkin’s State of the Commonwealth address touched on a number of areas.

But, as Michael Pope reports, one part of the speech had lawmakers buzzing.

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Full Disclosure Briefing: The high stakes competition of recruiting businesses to Virginia

Virginia’s governor says the Commonwealth is not keeping pace with its peers.  And he’s proposed a number of changes he says will make the state more competitive.

Roben Farzad, host of public radio’s Full Disclosure, and Craig Wright talk about the high-stakes competition of recruiting businesses to Virginia.

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Wilder to Youngkin: The people will tell you if you should go further

Former Gov. Douglas Wilder

The General Assembly session begins Wednesday, with a State of the Commonwealth speech from the governor.

Michael Pope has this insight on the moment from a former governor.

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Va. News: Daylight Saving Time & saving historic documents

A Roanoke County delegate wants to find out more about how switching to Daylight Saving Time every spring impacts Virginians and whether that should continue.  And some of the nation’s oldest historical documents may be at risk of damage from material that was meant to protect them.

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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Children’s Hospital of Richmond helps schools prepare for emergencies involving cardiac arrest

At the Children’s Hospital of Richmond Dr. John Phillips is working with schools to win certification from Project Adam. (Credit: Children’s Hospital of Richmond)

When an NFL player collapsed on national TV, it raised public awareness about cardiac arrest.  

A hospital in Richmond is helping schools to prepare for a similar event as Sandy Hausman reports.

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Panel that regulates utilities down to one member

State lawmakers were already looking at a busy session when one member of the State Corporation Commission announced her resignation. 

That will leave just one person on an essential regulatory board, and as Sandy Hausman reports, making new appointments through the legislature could be a challenge.

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Pope & Schapiro: What’s at stake in Tuesday’s special elections and the General Assembly session

Virginia’s General Assembly gets down to work on Wednesday.  But before that a couple of new members will be elected.

Jeff Schapiro, political columnist at the Richmond Times-Dispatch, and Michael Pope have more on what’s at stake.

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Va. News: Saving bee populations & a banner year for libraries

One Virginia city is looking to slow the alarming decline in honeybee populations.  And there are still plenty of people who use the public library even if they don’t go there.

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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New year brings elimination of state sales tax on groceries

The first day of the new year will see some changes to Virginia law, including one very important change at the grocery store.

Michael Pope explains.

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Pope & Schapiro: Campaigns in 2023 and far beyond

2022 is nearly over.  And political observers are looking to campaigns in 2023 and far beyond.

Jeff Schapiro, of the Richmond Times-Dispatch, and Michael Pope discuss the week in politics and state government.

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Virginia’s minimum wage will increase to $12 an hour, January 1

On January 1st Virginia’s minimum wage will move from 11 to 12 dollars an hour.

Mallory Noe-Payne has details. 

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Advocates find reasons to like Youngkin’s behavioral health plan

Gov. Glenn Youngkin announces his Right Help Right Now plan. (Credit: Governor’s Office livestream)

Lawmakers are preparing to return to Richmond and gavel into session next month.

And as Michael Pope reports, one issue they’ll be discussing has widespread support on both sides of the aisle. 

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Many equestrian helmets don’t protect against brain injury, new study says

To develop the ratings for equestrian helmet ratings, researchers from the Virginia Tech Helmet Lab conducted testing under real-world conditions at the Alphin Stuart Livestock Area on Virginia Tech’s Blacksburg campus. (Credit: Eleanor Nelsen/Virginia Tech)

Horseback riders are at a high risk of getting a brain injury.

The first study that tests equestrian helmets for their ability to protect riders has just been released by Virginia Tech’s helmet laboratory.

Roxy Todd has more.

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Virginia nursing homes are struggling to stay staffed

(Credit: Virginia Health Care Association)

2021 was not a good year to work in a nursing home. But it turns out 2022 was worse.

According to a recent survey, 4 in 5 nursing home facility directors say they’re still facing difficulty in filling jobs and shifts.  Mallory Noe-Payne reports.

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In Indigenous communities, some Two-Spirit people are reclaiming their roles

For hundreds of years, Europeans systematically tried to wipe out Indigenous cultures. On the frontline were tribal members who held a sacred status because they had both feminine and masculine qualities. Today, they call themselves Two-Spirits.

VCU professor Gregory Smithers has written about the history of gender and sexual fluidity in Native American history and culture in his new book, “Reclaiming Two-Spirits.”

Pamela D’Angelo reports.

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Republican delegate on legislation to remove prohibition on gay marriage

Lawmakers in Virginia are about to return to the Capitol and consider new laws and constitutional amendments.

Michael Pope reports one of those constitutional amendments could be about marriage.

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Pope & Schapiro: No holiday slowdown for politicians this year

Virginia’s political machines are not coasting into the holiday season.

Jeff Schapiro, political columnist at the Richmond Times-Dispatch, and Michael Pope recap a fast-moving week in politics and state government.

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In budget presentation, Youngkin says Virginia can afford both tax cuts and investments in services

Gov. Glenn Youngkin speaks to the General Assembly money committees Thursday. (Credit: General Assembly livestream)

Governor Glenn Youngkin is kicking off the budget process.

During a presentation to the House and Senate money committees Thursday, Youngkin said he wants to transform behavioral health services, invest in site readiness to attract economic development and cut taxes for individuals and businesses.

Michael Pope has some of the details and reaction.

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The price of life in prison

Virginia spends big money to run its prison system. 

The state provides many of the necessities to incarcerated people.  But those inmates and their families have to spend sizeable sums for snacks, hygiene products and even phone calls.

The charges have gotten so big, the General Assembly is now trying to review contracts and price lists.

Sandy Hausman begins a series of reports on the issue with this story about conditions at the Fluvanna Correctional Center for Women.

When state lawmakers met in Richmond nearly a year ago, prisoner advocates asked them to regulate the price of goods and services offered behind bars. 

They complained of high costs for food from the canteen and noted Virginia prisoners pay four times as much as inmates in another state to make phone calls.

Legislators were concerned and decided to set up a committee that could investigate. 

Sandy Hausman reports on their findings.

People locked up in local and regional jails also have to pay similar fees for phone calls and other items.

And Michael Pope reports it’s been even harder for a General Assembly work group to get a clear picture of costs.

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Youngkin to propose income tax changes in budget plan

Gov. Glenn Youngkin

Virginia’s governor will outline his proposal for the state budget Thursday morning.

Michael Pope has this preview.

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State recommendation: Make dual enrollment classes free

(Credit: Jahd Khalil)

Last school year almost 50,000 Virginia students took one or more college courses while still in high school.

Dual enrollment is a way for those students to get ahead before even starting college.

Now lawmakers are considering how to make access more equitable.

Mallory Noe-Payne has more. 

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Youngkin outlines changes to Virginia’s mental health system

Governor Glenn Youngkin announces his new mental health plan at Parham Doctor’s Hospital in Richmond. (Credit: Governor’s office livestream)

Governor Glenn Youngkin is hoping to transform Virginia’s behavioral health system.

Michael Pope has the details on his plan.

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Unemployment: How low is too low?

Virginia’s unemployment rate has now returned to pre-pandemic levels.

And as Michael Pope reports, the rate is so low it’s raising concern among some economists.

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Full Disclosure Briefing: The business side of RGGI

Virginia’s Air Pollution Control Board took another step last week toward pulling Virginia out of a Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative. And while a lot of the debate has become political, there are also business considerations involved.

Roben Farzad, host of Public Radio’s Full Disclosure, and host Craig Wright have more on that.

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Poll: Virginians feel just as safe after criminal justice changes

A new poll shows voters support recent changes to criminal justice in Virginia.

Michael Pope has the details.

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Pope & Schapiro: Antisemitism report, COVID changes & Spanberger’s new clout

A new outline to fight antisemitism in Virginia and changes to COVID policies top this week’s action in Richmond.

Jeff Schapiro, of the Richmond Times Dispatch, and Michael Pope recap the week in politics and state government.

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Immersive exhibit brings the words and images of Frederick Douglass to life

Isaac Julien: Lessons of the Hour—Frederick Douglass, a new exhibit at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts.
(Credit: Mallory Noe-Payne)

Abolitionist Frederick Douglass was known for his captivating physical presence and compelling public speaking. He was the most photographed person of the 19th century. 

Now an immersive exhibit at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts uses actors, screens, and sounds to bring his presence to the 21st century.

Mallory Noe-Payne got a sneak peek and filed this report.

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Girl Power demonstrates the art of the lineman

Mariella Kern learns to scale an electrical pole. (Credit: Sandy Hausman)

With the approach of winter, some jobs clearly have more appeal than others.  Utility linemen, for example, will be on call through the winter – ready to battle ice and snowstorms to keep the power on. 

It’s not for everyone, and demand is high. 

That’s why the Central Virginia Electric Cooperative held a special event this month called Girl Power. 

Sandy Hausman was there and filed this report.

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Deer hunting season extended to March in some areas to control spread of chronic wasting disease

(Credit: Meghan Marchetti/Va. Department of Wildlife Resources)

Deer hunting season is in full swing for much of Virginia. This year, hunters are being called on to help reduce the spread of a fatal deer disease, called Chronic Wasting Disease.

The hunting season has been extended to late March in counties where the disease is spreading, as Roxy Todd reports.

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Full Disclosure Briefing: Inflation’s impact on holiday spending

Inflation has changed the financial equation in many parts of life.  But how is it impacting holiday shopping?

Roben Farzad, host of public radio’s Full Disclosure, and Craig Wright have more on the early indicators.

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Pope & Schapiro: McEachin’s legacy and what happens next

Rep. Donald McEachin

Virginia’s political world was shaken by the sudden death of Congressman Donald McEachin this week.

Jeff Schapiro, political columnist with the Richmond Times-Dispatch, and Michael Pope discuss McEachin’s legacy and what might happen next.

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Richmond couple reflects on 20 years leading the fight to memorialize Shockoe Bottom

Phil Wilayto and Ana Edwards pose with a piece of the asphalt that was once a parking lot over the burial ground in Shockoe Bottom. (Credit: Phil Wilayto & Ana Edwards)

Richmond’s Shockoe Bottom was once the epicenter of the Virginia slave trade, the second largest site of human trafficking in North America.

Experts estimate the majority of Black Americans can trace their ancestry to this spot.

Today politicians and local leaders have thrown their support behind a memorial park and museum here. But two decades ago, this history was buried under a parking lot.

Mallory Noe-Payne caught up with the husband and wife team who have spent 20 years leading the grassroots movement to get this site memorialized.

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UVA, Chesapeake shootings renew calls for action on gun violence

Chesapeake officials hold a press conference on Wednesday, Nov. 23 to discuss a mass shooting at the Sam’s Circle Walmart the night before. (Credit: Ryan Murphy)

The latest mass shootings in Virginia are prompting yet another round of soul searching. 

And, as Michael Pope reports, they’ve renewed calls for action.

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Full Disclosure Briefing: Food banks face impact of inflation

Food banks often get added attention around holidays.  And they, like all of us, are dealing with the impact of inflation.

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

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Pope & Schapiro: Primary season is underway

There’s an old adage that in Virginia, you’re never more than a few months away from the next election.

Jeff Schapiro, political columnist at the Richmond Times-Dispatch, and Michael Pope have more on the upcoming primary season that’s been shaken up by redistricting.

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Housing advocates like some of what they’ve seen in Youngkin’s housing plan, but want to see more

Gov. Glenn Youngkin

Affordable housing might take a bigger role in the upcoming General Assembly session.

Michael Pope reports on the new plan proposed by the governor.

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Full Disclosure Briefing: Thanksgiving inflation

Many of us are putting the finishing touches on holiday menus today.

Roben Farzad, host of the Full Disclosure podcast, and Craig Wright explain how inflation is hitting the Thanksgiving table this year.

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Federal report calls for improvements in pipeline inspections and investigations

A new watchdog report says the federal government should do a better job inspecting pipelines and investigating accidents.

Michael Pope reports.

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Va. News: DNA revelations and write-in candidate success

A teenager who wasn’t on the ballot has been elected to the Timberville Town Council.  And DNA research has produced some stunning news for a Fredericksburg man.

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 lawmakers may weigh what to do about precious metal mining next session

Members of the General Assembly are getting ready for another session.

Michael Pope says one of the issues on the agenda this year is what to do about the potential mining of precious metals.

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Criticism, confusion swirl around changes to history standards

Zowee Aquino, alongside members of the Hamkae Center, spoke at Thursday’s Board of Education meeting.
(Credit: Mallory Noe-Payne)

Virginia’s Board and Department of Education continues to struggle through a divisive and confusing process of re-writing the state’s history and social studies SOL standards.

Mallory Noe-Payne was at an hours-long meeting of the Board of Education today and has this report. 

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Aging in prison: Elderly population may triple in 20 years

Last year, Virginia spent well over a billion dollars on corrections – keeping nearly 24,000 people in prison.  And the bill is about to get much bigger as that population ages. 

Sandy Hausman reports on what we can expect in the years to come and how the state is preparing to care for elderly inmates behind bars.

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Pope & Schapiro: Questions about the UVA shooting & fallout from the November election

The fallout from the November election was quickly overshadowed by the shooting at the University of Virginia.

Jeff Schapiro, political columnist at the Richmond Times-Dispatch, and Michael Pope recap the week in politics and state government.

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