My name is Payton. I enjoy Batman and BBQ chicken pizza.
Virginia Lawmakers Look to Address Mandatory Arbitration in Financial Contracts
Several members of the Virginia congressional delegation are calling the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to take swift action against mandatory arbitration clauses. Those are provisions tucked away into consumer financial contracts that allow corporations to avoid lawsuits. Michael Pope reports.
Menhaden Fishing Limits are Swimming in Controversy
A fish crucial to Chesapeake Bay crabbers and Virginia’s omega-3 oil industry is proving to be one of the most controversial, as Atlantic fisheries managers struggled this week at their summer meeting to determine how much should be caught. Pamela D’Angelo reports.
Confusion Reigns on Transgender Bathrooms as Schools Prepare for Fall
As schools across Virginia prepare for the end of summer and the first day of classes, superintendents and principals will be waiting to hear the outcome in a dramatic court case that could have a lasting influence for transgender students across the country. Michael Pope reports.
CubeFest to Crank the Sound Way Beyond ’11’
Posted in Virginia's News on August 4, 2016
“Spatial Music” is an immersive roomful of sound that is so new it can be heard in only a few places on the planet. One of them is Blacksburg, Virginia, where you’ll find a venue called “The Cube” at the Moss Arts Center at Virginia Tech. This week, a three-day “spatial music festival” will explore the new medium with a concert series and workshops. Robbie Harris has more on what this new venue, and its 2 tons of audio equipment, can do.
Virginia Republicans React to This Week’s Trump Controversies
Posted in Virginia's News on August 3, 2016
Republican leaders across Virginia are grappling with how to handle the latest round of controversy from Donald Trump. And, as Michael Pope tells us, they’re taking a variety of approaches.
McAuliffe Office Rushes to Fulfill Promise by Individually Restoring Voting Rights
Elections officials across Virginia are about to cast aside thousands of voters in the wake of a Virginia Supreme Court decision last month. It’s the latest in an ongoing drama that could have drastic consequences on Election Day. Michael Pope has the story.
Va News Topics: Hybrid Buildings in D.C., Phantom Parking Spaces
A Northern Virginia developer is placing a big bet on the future of hybrid buildings in the DC suburbs…and it turns out that quite a few parking spaces in Norfolk are simply figments of the city’s official imagination. Those have been among the most read stories over the past week at the Virginia Public Access Project’s Va News link at vpap.org. More from Fred Echols:
McAuliffe Pushes Forward with Rights Restoration Despite Supreme Court Ruling
Posted in Virginia's News on July 29, 2016
The Virginia Supreme Court may have overturned Democratic Governor Terry McAuliffe’s executive order restoring voting rights to 200,000 former felons. But as Michael Pope reports, that’s not stopping him from moving forward with the plan.
The Legacy of Anne Holton, Former Secretary of Education and Potential Future Second Lady
Hillary Clinton’s selection of Tim Kaine includes more than the junior senator from Virginia. It also includes the senator’s wife, who was until recently the Secretary of Education — the only person to ever grow up in the Executive Mansion and then return as an adult. Michael Pope has this profile of the woman who may be the next Second Lady.
Minnesota Senator Reflects on Tim Kaine’s Newfound Celebrity Status
Virginia’s junior senator made such a splash at Wednesday’s convention of Democrats that other states are laying claim to him and offering advice to Virginia’s senior senator. Sandy Hausman reports.
Get to Know the Virginia Delegation at the DNC
Virginia Delegates to the Democratic national Convention are a diverse group with diverse backgrounds. Matt Laslo is in Philadelphia and sent along this audio postcard so you could get to know some of the delegates and the reason they’re in Philadelphia this week.
An Audio Postcard from the Republican National Convention, Part Two
Posted in Virginia's News on July 22, 2016
Our Congressional reporter Matt Laslo has spent the week in Cleveland with Virginia’s delegates to the Republican National Convention. He sent us this audio postcard from Ohio.
An Audio Postcard from the Republican National Convention
Posted in Virginia's News on July 21, 2016
Virginia’s delegation at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland this week has a range of diverse backgrounds, but they’re all diehard conservatives who are active in politics. VPR congressional reporter Matt Laslo is in Cleveland and sent us this audio postcard from some of our delegates.
Fundraising for Gubernatorial Campaign Getting Head Start One Year Out
Posted in Virginia's News on July 20, 2016
Most of the delegates to the Republican National Convention are focused on the election this year. But delegates from Virginia are also in Cleveland setting the stage for next year. And, as Michael Pope reports, the fundraising efforts for the next campaign for governor are already heating up.
Summering in Cleveland or Philly? Delegates Say ‘Yes, Please!’
Cleveland and Philadelphia don’t make the list of America’s top 25 vacation destinations, but this month more than 7,000 people are excited to be going there – delighted by the idea of spending hours in a convention center talking politics. Sandy Hausman spoke with some of those representing Virginia at the Republican and Democratic National Conventions.
Constitutionality of Felon Rights Restoration Questioned in Virginia Supreme Court Hearing
Members of the Virginia Supreme Court are considering a challenge to Democratic Governor Terry McAuliffe’s executive order restoring voting rights to more than two hundred thousand former felons. Michael Pope is at the Supreme Court with the latest.
Divisiveness Over Trump Means No-Shows for Republican National Convention
Posted in Virginia's News on July 18, 2016
The majority of Virginia Republican members of Congress are skipping their party’s convention in Cleveland this week. Matt Laslo has the details on a party that remains divided over Donald Trump.
Concerns about Airbnb Could Lead to Stronger Regulations
Posted in Virginia's News on July 15, 2016
CREDIT CREDIT OPEN GRID SCHEDULER / GRID SCHEDULER / CREATIVE COMMONS
New technology is disrupting all kinds of industries, everything from newspapers and taxis to music and now hotels. The latest technology allows homeowners to rent out rooms of their house, or sometimes the entire house. That’s causing alarm among lawmakers, who are now engaged in an effort to craft new kinds of regulations. Michael Pope reports.
New Bill Would Prohibit Flying of Confederate Flag over Confederate Cemeteries
The debate over the Confederate flag is still raging in Washington, where elected officials are clashing over where and when it’s appropriate to display the Confederate flag. Michael Pope reports.
Not All Felons Want to Vote: A Community Worn Down by Politics
Virginia’s Governor made national headlines in April, when he restored voting rights to more than 200,000 ex-felons. But the backlash was quick and fierce. Republicans accused the Governor of misusing his power to sway presidential politics. Reports revealed rapists and murderers still in prison, whose rights had been restored, accidentally.
Since then, the debate has ramped up. But stuck in the middle are thousands of Virginians — not all of whom are excited to vote. Mallory Noe-Payne has this story, of a community worn down by politics.
Va News Topics: Virginia Trump Products, Water Park Uncertainties
Among the many products that bear the Trump name, one of the most successful is made in Virginia…and public concerns about revenues and land use are raising questions about the future of a popular Northern Virginia water park. 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 from Fred Echols.
Republican Delegate Files Anti-Trump Lawsuit Ahead of Convention
As Republicans prepare to gather in Cleveland for their convention, a legal challenge in Virginia threatens to upend the process. The lawsuit comes from a Northern Virginia supporter of Ted Cruz who says he should be able to vote his conscience. Michael Pope reports.
Virginia Home to Some of the Youngest Communities in the Nation
Posted in Virginia's News on July 7, 2016
Virginia may be one of the oldest states. And its history may stretch back into the past more than other states. But new numbers from the federal government are revealing a surprising twist about Virginia.
‘It Really Hurts When You Know How Hard You’re Working’: Veteran Teacher Reflects on Career
More than 8,000 teachers and administrators are currently gathered in the country’s capital for the National Education Association‘s annual conference. Among them is Meg Gruber, president of Virginia’s Education Association.
Gruber is the outgoing president of the VEA, and a veteran teacher of more than 30 years. Before she headed up to D.C., Gruber sat down with reporter Mallory Noe-Payne to talk about how education, at its heart, is a local issue not a national one.
Legislators Working to Challenge Civil Asset Forfeiture Laws
Police agencies in Virginia get most of their money from local governments. But in recent years, they’ve been increasingly tapping another source of cash – seizing it directly from people they suspect of wrongdoing. The program, known as civil asset forfeiture, has become increasingly controversial in recent years. And now, efforts are moving forward at the state and national level to reform the program. Michael Pope reports.
Senator Tim Kaine Leads Virginia Awareness Campaign for Zika Virus
Virginia Senator Tim Kaine met today with doctors from VCU and the Red Cross, along with state health officials, to gather information and raise awareness about the health threat posed by the Zika virus. Mallory Noe-Payne reports.
Northern Virginia Poised to Become Leader in Driverless Cars
It’s been more than a century since horseless carriages started revolutionizing transportation across America. Now driverless cars are about to reshape the American landscape, and a new report from George Mason University says Virginia is poised to become a leader in the industry. Michael Pope has the story.
Virginia Team Finds Possible Connection between Plant Fossils and Ancient Dragon Lore
According to research coordinated by a pair of Roanoke College professors, fossils common to coal seams may be responsible for dragon tales all around the world. Tim Thornton has more in this report.
VaNews Topics: Signs and Speech, Town Services
A Supreme Court ruling on free speech is forcing some localities to change how they regulate public signs, and another city Virginia says it may have to become a town because it can’t afford the cost of providing services for its residents. Those have been among the most read stories over the past week at the Virginia Public Access Project’s Va News link at vpap.org. Fred Echols has more.
State Trooper Sends Support Home to West Virginia
Federal officials are stepping in to aid the thousands without power, homes, or basic needs following devastating flooding in West Virginia last week. But one Virginian is stepping up and doing what she can to help those recovering, loading up a tractor trailer with supplies, and heading home. Mallory Noe-Payne has her story.
Gov. McAuliffe’s Latest Executive Order is a Product of Partisan Gridlock
This week, Democratic Governor Terry McAuliffe issued yet another executive order, this time to bypass the General Assembly and take a look at ways the commonwealth can respond to climate change. It’s the latest example of a governor who has increasingly taken to using executive power to accomplish his agenda, a trend that’s causing alarm among Republican leaders in the General Assembly. Michael Pope has the story.
Virginia Democrats Face Uphill Battle for Gun Control
Posted in Virginia's News on June 29, 2016
Democrats are hoping to make gun-control a central plank in this year’s elections, but Virginia Republicans say it’s a bad idea. Matt Laslo has the details from the Capitol.
The Contributors to Bob McDonnell’s Legal Defense Fund
Former Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell’s political career may be over. But his days raising money are not. Michael Pope has this look at the fundraising effort to pay McDonnell’s legal bills.
Virginia Republicans Respond to the Supreme Court’s McDonnell Ruling
With Monday’s Supreme Court ruling, many Virginia politicians are speaking up in support of the state’s ex-Governor. But they’re also thinking about what the ruling means for politics in the Commonwealth. Mallory Noe-Payne reports.
McDonnell Decision: Legal Consequences
The Supreme Court decision today overturning the corruption case against former Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell could have far-reaching legal consequences. Michael Pope has the story.
Michael Pope continues his report on the legal consequences of the McDonnell ruling:
VaNews Topics: Chesterfield Summer Reading, Virginia Textbooks
Some of the entries on the Chesterfield County Schools’ summer reading list have drawn sharp criticism from parents, while there are concerns being raised about the age of textbooks in other locations in Virginia. Those have been among the most read stories over the past week at the Virginia Public Access Project’s Va News link on vpap.org. Fred Echols has more.
Loopers: Traversing the ‘Appalachian Trail on Water’
The Great Loop of the Eastern United States is like a safari or sea-fari if you will. There are bears, manatees, bald eagles and mountain lions all while boaters cruise through 6,000 miles of waterways. They travel the Atlantic up to Canada then to inland waterways, down to the Gulf Coast and back to the Atlantic. Pamela D’Angelo met up with a pair of so-called Loopers from Maine as they followed the route of Captain John Smith up the Rappahannock River.
Supreme Court Unanimously Overturns Former Gov. Bob McDonnell’s Corruption Convictions
Former Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell and his wife are breathing a sigh of relief today, after the United States Supreme court threw out their convictions for corruption and conspiracy. Michael Pope is at the Supreme Court with the latest.
Virginia Readies to Take Guns from Abusers
As Congress once again fails to make any headway on gun control, Virginia is set to implement a new measure of gun control.
In 2014, 66 people in the state were killed by a spouse or partner, using a firearm. The new measure seeks to lower that number. Mallory Noe-Payne reports.
Football Hall of Fame Visits Richmond
Posted in Virginia's News on June 24, 2016
Looking for something to do with a young football fan this summer? The Virginia Historical Society in Richmond may not known for its young audience, but a new special exhibition this summer could change that. Mallory Noe-Payne reports.
Gov. McAullife Signs New Measures to Prevent Addicts from Acquiring Drugs
In 2014, almost 1,000 people died from opiate overdose in Virginia — and that number is trending upwards, not down. A state task force created a number of proposals to help stem the epidemic, and Governor Terry McAuliffe signed three of those measures into law today. The primary goal? To help prevent addicts from acquiring drugs. Mallory Noe-Payne explains how.
A Tale of Two Governments
The sit-in launched by Democrats in the House of Representatives may be over, but the gridlock in Washington over the gun debate offers a stark contrast with what happened in Richmond earlier this year. That’s when leaders from opposing parties were able to craft a sweeping compromise on the issue. Michael Pope has this tale of two governments.
Virginia Attorney General’s Office Says Fairfax Schools Can’t Redact Disclosure Forms
Virginia’s largest school system may also be its most secretive. Leaders at the Fairfax County School system have a history of redacting information from financial disclosure forms of School Board members. Now, as Michael Pope reports, a new opinion from the Virginia attorney general says they should hand over the information.
State Gives Housing Grants to Richmond, Blacksburg
The Governor announced Wednesday the first of a new type of grant, state dollars going towards housing and community development projects. The first two recipients of the Vibrant Community Initiative are in Richmond, and Blacksburg. Mallory Noe-Payne has this report.
ACA Financial Guaranty Sues City of Buena Vista over Unpaid Municipal Bonds
The long-running legal battle involving bonds issued by the City of Buena Vista and the company that insures those bonds has taken a new turn. Fred Echols reports.
Sen. Warner: ‘Short-term-ism’ is Undermining Capitalism
Is corporate America too focused on the short term? Virginia Senator Mark Warner thinks so, and he’s hoping the Federal Reserve is keeping an eye on the trend. Michael Pope reports.
Virginia Lawmaker Fights to Outlaw Forced Arbitration Clauses
Major corporations across the country are increasingly adding language to contracts to prevent lawsuits, a controversial practice that is coming under increased scrutiny. The provisions, known as “forced arbitration clauses,” apply to everything from getting a credit card to accepting a job offer. And now one Virginia lawmaker says these provisions should be outlawed. Michael Pope has this report.
Virginia State Parks’ 80th Anniversary to Coincide with National Parks Centennial
You may have heard it’s the 100th anniversary of the National Parks System. What you may not know is that Virginia’s State parks are celebrating their own anniversary — 80 years. Virginia was the first state to open an entire system, 6 parks, in one day. Mallory Noe-Payne tells the story.
ACLU Report Claims Majority of Virginia Prosecutor Elections Are Uncontested
Prosecutors in Virginia are elected to four-year terms. But that doesn’t necessarily mean they have to do much campaigning. As Michael Pope tells us, a new report from the ACLU of Virginia says the vast majority of these elections are uncontested.
Minorities Underrepresented in Virginia Legislature
A new analysis out today from the Associated Press shows that across the country many minorities are severely underrepresented in their states’ legislatures. Virginia is no exception, ranking high for black and Latino under-representation. Mallory Noe-Payne reports.