Archive for category Uncategorized

Virginia Cavaliers Ready for Final Four

Virginia Athletics Logo

The University of Virginia men’s basketball team is getting ready to play Auburn in the Final Four Saturday night.

Greg Echlin  has more from Minneapolis.

UVA coach Tony Bennett isn’t far from his roots at the Men’s Final Four in Minneapolis.

Greg Echlin explains why.

Leave a comment

General Assembly Agrees to End License Suspensions for Unpaid Court Costs



Credit: Patrick Feller via / CC

More than half a million people in Virginia with outstanding court fines are about to get their driver’s licenses back.

That’s thanks to a budget amendment from Democratic Governor Ralph Northam that was approved yesterday by a Republican-led General Assembly.

Michael Pope reports.

Leave a comment

Va. News: Virginia Lottery faced 1990’s controversy, new rules for Roanoke dog owners


Rental property owners are bringing 21st-Century technology into the battle against dog poop…and we take a look back at the time the Virginia State Lottery was at the center of an intercontinental controversy. 

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.

Leave a comment

Data Shows Steady Decline of Virginia Manufacturing Jobs


Source: Weldon Cooper Center for Public Service

Manufacturing in Virginia is suffering, according to data from the University of Virginia’s Weldon Cooper Center for Public Service.

Michael Pope looked into the numbers.

Leave a comment

Virginia’s First Green Cemetery


An old dairy barn greets visitors to Duck Run. (Credit: Sandy Hausman)

The National Funeral Directors Association reports a typical viewing and burial can cost more than seven-thousand dollars on average, and that doesn’t count the price of a spot in the cemetery.

That’s one factor feeding a growing trend toward cremation and natural burials.

Sandy Hausman stopped by Virginia’s first green cemetery and filed this report.

Leave a comment

Northam Proposes Regional Gas Tax, Fee Increases to Fund Interstate 81 Improvements


  Traffic on Interstate 81 near Salem (Credit: David Seidel)

The governor and state transportation officials are making a second run at funding improvements on Interstate 81.

David Seidel explains how.

Leave a comment

Fields Pleads Guilty to Federal Charges, Will Not Face Death Penalty



U.S. Attorney Thomas Cullen announces a plea deal. James Fields admits guilt in the Charlottesville car attack and will not be sentenced to death. (Credit: Sandy Hausman)

After a conviction in state court earlier this year, James Fields has pleaded guilty to federal charges in connection with the death of Heather Heyer and the injury of 28 others after a racist rally in Charlottesville.

As Sandy Hausman reports, the U.S. Attorney and Heyer’s mother are both satisfied that Fields will spend the rest of his life in prison.

Leave a comment

Northam Moves to Restore 627,000 Licenses Suspended Over Court Fees and Fines


Governor Ralph Northam says he’s added language to the budget that would end the practice of taking away a driver’s license if someone is unable to pay court fees or fines. (Credit: Sandy Hausman)

More than 620,000 Virginians have lost their driver’s license, because they couldn’t afford to pay court fines or fees that had nothing to do with driving.

Tuesday, Governor Northam announced a plan to restore driving privileges as Sandy Hausman reports.

Leave a comment

Va. News: Bath County school buses offer WiFi, Establishing a Line between two Va. Counties


Two Virginia counties now know exactly where one of them ends and the other begins, something that hasn’t been clear for almost 200 years. And elementary school students in another county are getting a chance to make better use of their time on the bus.

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.

Leave a comment

Study Shows Many Virginia Communities Suffer from Poor Air Quality


Credit onnola/

Virginia’s air quality has been a topic of debate in recent years, as environmentalists have clashed with business interests.

Meanwhile, as Michael Pope reports the quality of Virginia’s air has suffered.


Leave a comment

Virginia Democrats split on Medicare for All Proposals


(Credit: Rog Cogswell/Creative Commons)

The Democratic Party seems to be moving to the left with most of its high-profile presidential candidates embracing proposals like Medicare for All.

But Virginia Democrats are resisting the trend, as correspondent Matt Laslo reports from Washington.  

Leave a comment

“I thank God every day” — Exhibit Traces Impact of Immigrants on Virginia


More than a million Virginians were born in another country.


Those immigrants are just the latest in a long line of people who have shaped the state.


As Mallory Noe-Payne reports, their stories are being highlighted in an exhibit at the Library of Virginia.


Leave a comment

How Forests Help Mitigate Flooding


Trees are big money in Virginia, generating some $21 billion each year, according to the state department of Forestry.

Another $6.6 billion is attributed to forest contribution to air and water quality.


Now, the city of Virginia Beach is looking at the value of the city’s forests as one solution to their flooding problems caused by climate change and the region’s sinking lands.


Pamela D’Angelo reports.

Leave a comment

Study: Virginia Bucks National Trend for School Spending


Credit: dcJohn / Flickr

Many school districts across the country remain largely segregated by race.

Nationally, nonwhite school districts get $23 billion less in funding than white districts do.

But as Mallory Noe-Payne tells us, Virginia actually bucks that trend.

Leave a comment

Public Protest Casts a Shadow on Solar Arrays

Rooftop PV panel installation

  A Utah company hopes to cover about 3,500 acres in Spotsylvania County with solar panels like these.   (Credit National Renewable Energy Lab)

A group called Conservatives for Clean Energy recently surveyed 500 Virginia voters and found 72% want more emphasis on solar power here.

But as developers share plans with the public, they’re finding plenty of resistance.

Sandy Hausman reports on why some people object to solar arrays and whether their fears are founded.

Leave a comment

VT Biologists Find Cancer Connection to Our Body Clock


  Carla Finkielstein and Xianlin Zou compare notes in the laboratory.
(Credit Virginia Tech)

A new discovery finds that timing is everything when it comes to preventing and treating cancer.

Scientists at Virginia Tech are the first to confirm the important role our body’s internal clocks play in whether we are more prone to develop the disease.

Robbie Harris reports.

Leave a comment

Va. News: Public investment in privately owned rail, Coal-fired power plants go off line


Two more coal burning power plants have gone offline in Virginia as producers move toward other fuels…and passenger rail service is growing in the state thanks largely to public investment in private companies. 

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.

Leave a comment

Virginia Lawmakers find Common Ground Fighting Financial Crime


(Credit: John Brighenti / Flickr)

Washington gets a lot of bad publicity for partisan gridlock, and there’s certainly a lot of that.

But two freshman Virginia lawmakers from different parties are working together to crack down on financial crimes.

Michael Pope reports.

Leave a comment

How Have Local Real Estate Taxes Changed Over the Years?

Real Estate Taxes

Richmond’s Mayor is proposing a hike in the city’s real estate tax. He says the money is needed for schools and infrastructure.

And as Mallory Noe-Payne reports, in recent years real estate taxes have risen across the state.

Leave a comment

Changes in State Law Pave the Way for more Solar Jobs


  Our Lady Queen of Peace Catholic Church parishioner Luc DeWulf shows Bill Larme how the solar generator meter works.  The church recently installed solar panels on its roof.
(Credit Michael Pope)

Virginia hasn’t traditionally had a great reputation for renewable sources of energy.

But the solar industry is now booming in Virginia.

Michael Pope sheds some light on the numbers.

Leave a comment

Democrats want to send Message with HR 1


(Credit: Rog Cogswell/CC via

Virginia’s newly elected Democrats in Congress are hoping to re-write the rules for elections and campaign finance.

Michael Pope reports.

Leave a comment

Report Details the Potential Danger of Toxic Floodwaters


A map of at-risk sites in the James River watershed
(Credit: Center for Progressive Reform)

In Richmond late last month, the James River flooded to more than 16 feet, its highest since 2010.

A new report looks at another danger to communities when the James floods –contaminants from industrial areas along the river.
Pamela D’Angelo reports.


Leave a comment

Scott: Raising Minimum Wage would have Postive Local Impact


Rep. Bobby Scott

Lawmakers in Richmond rejected efforts to raise the minimum wage this year. But now Congress is considering raising the federal minimum wage.

And as Michael Pope, a Virginia congressman is leading the effort.

Leave a comment

Northam Makes First Public Appearances Since Scandal


Gov. Ralph Northam

Governor Ralph Northam is slowly and quietly getting out and about.

Mallory Noe-Payne was at his latest public appearance in Richmond Tuesday and has this report.

Leave a comment

After 2019 Session, Can Virginia Republicans Maintain the Majority?


Republicans have controlled Virginia’s House of Delegates for almost two decades.  At the height of their power they outnumbered Democrats two-to-one.

But shifting demographics and a fierce backlash to President Trump has put the party on defense.

Mallory Noe-Payne has this look at what Republicans did with what some predict may be their final year in the majority.

Leave a comment

Virginia AG says he wants to Repair Harm from Blackface

Herring Official

Attorney General Mark Herring (Credit: Commonwealth of Virginia)

Attorney General Mark Herring says he did not call on Governor Ralph Northam to resign because of blackface, but because the Governor flip-flopped on his story.

Mallory Noe-Payne has more.

Leave a comment

Va. News: Amazon impacts Real Estate cost in Northern VA, More Bears in Southwest Virginia City


There are two places in Virginia dealing with invasive outsiders this winter. One is being inundated by bears while legions of real estate speculators have come to the other.

Those have been among the most frequently read stories over the past week at the Virginia Public Access Project’s Va. News link.

More now from Fred Echols.


Leave a comment

More Democrats than Republicans Face Primary Challenges in 2019


Credit: justgrimes / Creative Commons

Don’t look now but another election is coming in just three months.

Michael Pope has this preview of the primary season.

Leave a comment

Blue Ridge Bucha Wins National Sustainability Award


Ethan Zuckerman, co-founder of Blue Ridge Bucha, in the brewery’s taproom (Credit: Sandy Hausman)

Virginia is for drinkers – or so it seems with all the wineries, breweries and cideries that have opened here.

And when you’re tired of those beverages, a company in Waynesboro is offering an award-winning alternative.

Sandy Hausman reports on Blue Ridge Bucha.

Leave a comment

Analysts: Republicans Energized at Start of 2019 Campaign


The end of the General Assembly session last weekend means the beginning of the campaign season.

Michael Pope has this preview.

Leave a comment

What Passed, and Didn’t, When it Comes to School Safety



Credit: alamosbasement / Flickr

School safety was at the top of everyone’s minds this legislative session.

Mallory Noe-Payne has this roundup of what passed and what didn’t.

Leave a comment

How Northam’s Eastern Shore Contributed to Scandal and Might Provide a Path Forward


Gov. Ralph Northam

We’ve heard from many voices about the racist photos on Governor Ralph Northam’s medical school yearbook page and his use of blackface.

Civil Rights advocates on the Eastern Shore, where Northam grew up, say the peninsula’s history and community shed light on what happened and how Northam might move forward.

Pamela D’Angelo talked with several leaders in the African American community there.

Leave a comment

Bipartisan Redistricting Amendment Still has Hurdles to Cross

2339958760_cba3816253_zPartisan gerrymandering in Virginia politics may soon be a thing of the past.

But as Michael Pope reports, the long fight to get there still has at least another year to go.

Leave a comment

Virginia Lawmakers Adjourn Scandal-marked 2019 Session

general assembly coverage 2019

It was a quiet end to anything but a quiet 2019 General Assembly session.

Mallory Noe-Payne reports.

Leave a comment

Va. News: Survival of Chesapeake Bay blue crabs, Halifax Schools ban cell phone recording


New research indicates that at least one Chesapeake Bay species could benefit from warmer temperatures… and the school superintendent in Halifax County has seen more than enough student videos on social media.

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.

Leave a comment

Civil Rights Icons, Richmond 34, Honored at Capitol

Richmond 34

Some of the Richmond 34 are honored on the floor of the House of Delegates.

In 1960 a group of teenagers from Virginia Union University staged a sit-in at a downtown Richmond department store. Thirty-four of them were arrested.

As Mallory Noe-Payne reports, the group was honored Friday and their records were finally expunged.

Leave a comment

Budget Neogitations could push General Assembly past Saturday Calendar Deadline

general assembly coverage 2019

Lawmakers in Richmond are putting the final touches on a budget deal as the General Assembly session comes to an end this weekend.

Michael Pope reports.

Leave a comment

How a Group of Teens Helped Convince Lawmakers to Close a Youth Prison


  Kidaya with RISE for Youth speaks with Delegate Aird. (Credit Mallory Noe-Payne)

At Virginia’s state house, lobbyists are everywhere. They meet with lawmakers, help draft bills and testify in committees.

Reporter Mallory Noe-Payne spent one day this week with a surprising group of lobbyists: Teenagers who have successfully convinced lawmakers to close one of the state’s juvenile prisons.

Leave a comment

After Scandal, Virginia’s Maternal Mortality Disparity Gets New Attention


Credit: Wellness Corporate Solutions / Flickr /

The blackface scandal may end up derailing the political career of two statewide elected officials.

But it may also end up changing policy in Virginia.

Michael Pope explains how.

Leave a comment

Confronting Climate Change Through Sound


  UVA Professor and composer Matthew Burtner is recording the sounds of melting glaciers, then composing memorial music. (Credit: UVA)

When they hear statistics about climate change or see graphs and charts, many people shut down – unwilling to think about one of the most serious issue of our times.

To draw them back into a conversation about our warming planet, two faculty members at UVA are using something called ecoacoustics – sounds that illustrate the relationship between humans and their environment.

Sandy Hausman reports from the Eastern Shore.

1 Comment

Va. News: Chesapeake’s old Trick or Treating law, costs end Norfolk Recycling program


Chesapeake is working on changes to law that has made the city a national punch line.  And shrinking profits are making it hard for many cities to keep their recycling programs alive.

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.


Leave a comment

Virginia Institiute of Marine Science gives Tidewater Neighborhoods a Flood-predicting Tool


This screenshot from shows area covered by Tidewatch Map Viewer tool.

For neighborhoods along the Atlantic Coast and the Chesapeake Bay, recurrent flooding that comes with climate change makes it hard to navigate, especially during seasonal high tides and more frequent extreme wind events like Nor’easters.

Now, the Virginia Institute of Marine Science has a tool to help people throughout the region prepare for a flood.

Pamela D’Angelo reports.

Leave a comment

With Time Running Out, ERA Advocates Pull Out All the Stops


Supporters of the ERA say the effort to get the General Assembly to pass the constitutional amendment are down but not out.

Michael Pope explains.

Leave a comment

The Politics of Alpacas at the General Assembly


Alpacas were not included in the Code of Virginia’s listing of livestock. (Credit: James Preston via / Creative Commons)

Alpacas are becoming increasingly popular across Virginia, although state laws have not kept up with the trend.

Now, as Michael Pope reports, one lawmaker has a bill to do just that.

Leave a comment

Bill to Require ICE Notifications Headed to Senate Floor


(Credit: ICE)

How closely should local jails work with federal immigration officials?

That’s an issue that lawmakers are debating in Richmond.

Michael Pope has the story.

Leave a comment

Virginia Legislature Formally Apologizes for Violent Racist Past


  The 1893 public lynching of black teenager Henry Smith in Texas.
(Credit Wikimedia)

Virginia lawmakers are expressing profound regret for lynching, the brutal murders of black men and women by white mobs in the decades after the Civil War.

As Mallory Noe-Payne reports, a joint resolution passed by the General Assembly comes amidst a messy and public debate about racism in Virginia.

Leave a comment

African-American Lawmakers Decry $21 Million Cut to Education

general assembly coverage 2019

The blackface scandals have caused lawmakers to approach a number of policy issues in new ways.

As Michael Pope tells us, that includes the budget.

Leave a comment

UVA Expert Says Plenty of Physicians Harbor Racist Attitudes


Dr. Irene Mathieu chairs the Equity and Inclusion Committee at UVA’s Department of Pediatrics. (Credit Irene Mathieu)

During his campaign for governor, Ralph Northam appeared in a TV ad, holding an African-American baby.

The message was that Doctor Northam – a pediatric neurologist – cares deeply for kids, regardless of race.

That made the picture in his medical school yearbook doubly shocking.

But a fellow doctor told Radio IQ’s Sandy Hausman that racism is not uncommon in the medical profession.

Leave a comment

Party-line Votes Clear the Way for Legislation Keeping Virginia Out of RGGI


Should Virginia join a regional effort to cut back on carbon emissions?

Party affiliation likely shows where your lawmakers stands on this issue.

Michael Pope reports.

Leave a comment

Could a “Special Committee” Investigate Claims Against Fairfax?


Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax (Credit: Lburke007 / Creative Commons via flickr

Lawmakers in Richmond are trying to figure out a way to handle the sexual assault allegations against Lieutenant Governor Justin Fairfax, although at this point there are more questions than answers.

Michael Pope explains.

Leave a comment