U.S. Energy Secretary applauds Biden’s climate bill

U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm

Senator Tim Kaine and the U.S. Secretary of Energy were in Lexington this week to talk-up the Inflation Reduction Act.

They promised it would be a good deal for consumers and businesses selling solar, wind and other energy sources… that don’t contribute to climate change.  Sandy Hausman spoke with them and filed this report.

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Pope & Schapiro: Governor Youngkin hits the campaign trail… again

Governor Glenn Youngkin is again stumping for candidates in this year’s mid-term elections.

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

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School divisions get uneven support from the state

As students across Virginia head back to school, Michael Pope reports those schools are not receiving the same amount of financial support from the state.

You can find the Commonwealth Institute analysis here.

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Spotted lanternflies are spreading in Virginia. These three things will help save vineyards

Spotted lanternfly on a tree near Winchester, Virginia on August 17, 2022. (Credit: Theresa Dellinger, Insect Identification Laboratory at Virginia Tech)

Virginia winemakers are under a new threat. An insect called the Spotted Lanternfly is spreading throughout Virginia. In July, the state Department of Agriculture issued a quarantine for 12 counties and 10 cities.

The insect originated from China, and has wreaked havoc for some vineyards in Pennsylvania. There is a silver lining, however: people can prevent the spread of the insect. Roxy Todd tells us how.

If you see one of these insects, the state Department of Agriculture asks that you kill it immediately, and contact your local extension office.

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Environmental groups bemoan regulatory MVP extension

Environmental groups are raising the alarm after federal regulators granted another extension to a natural gas pipeline. Michael Pope reports.

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Virginia Tribes work with state officials on correct history education standards

From left: May Edwards, Chairperson VTEC (Chickahominy Tribe); Owen Adams, VTEC administrator (Upper Mattaponi Tribe); Deborah Wilkinson, Secretary VTEC (Upper Mattaponi Tribe) (Credit: Pamela D’Angelo)

A delay in Virginia’s overhaul of state standards for history and social studies learning standards has some concerned, but one minority group is confident changes they’ve made will stick. Pamela D’Angelo reports.

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RC Poll: Consumer sentiment is on the rise

A new survey shows consumer sentiment in Virginia is on the upswing. Michael Pope reports.

You can see the rest of the poll’s findings here.

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Full Disclosure Briefing: Inflation vs. Investors

High inflation and several factors – like the war in Ukraine – make for uncertain economic times.

Roben Farzad – host of the Full Disclosure podcast – and Weekend Edition host Craig Wright discuss what all that means for investors.

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Immigrant candidates will likely make immigration a big focus of congressional races

Credit: NPR

Immigration is likely to be an issue on the campaign trail this year. And, as Michael Pope reports, the Republican candidates will have their own immigration stories to tell.

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Commission to consider consolidating or repurposing juvenile detention facilities

Virginia’s juvenile justice system is about to get a makeover.

Michael Pope explains.

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Va. News: Invasive plans & Lewis, Clark and York

The names Lewis and Clark are famous in U. S. history. But only a few people have heard the name of one of their most important companions.  And invasive plant species are serious problems in Virginia, especially where they’re being locally sold.

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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Youngkin proposes new round of tax relief

Governor Glenn Youngkin addresses the General Assembly’s money committees. (Credit: Virginia General Assembly livestream)

Virginia is flush with cash, which means you might be getting a check in the mail.

Michael Pope explains why. 

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Pope & Schapiro: Abortion, History & Election Denial

Abortion is becoming a prime topic in two Virginia Congressional races.

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

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Help (still) Wanted, even as schools reopen

Across Virginia, schools are struggling to find enough teachers for the upcoming fall semester.

Michael Pope explains why.

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SOL test scores rebound, but still behind pre-pandemic performance

Student performance on Virginia Standards of Learning tests rebounded in the last school year.

But it’s still well-behind the performance logged before the pandemic.

David Seidel has a snapshot of the result.

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State officials have so far denied a request to ban conversion therapy among Virginia adults

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

State regulators are not barring medical professionals who want to perform what’s known as conversion therapy from doing so. Michael Pope has details.

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Can natural history and national history co-exist?

Thousands of gulls and terns have taken up residence at the historic Ft. Wool site.
(Credit: Meagan Thomas/Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources)

When the Virginia Department of Transportation started work on the Hampton Bridge and Tunnel Project, construction equipment displaced sea birds that had been nesting there for years. 

The situation alarmed bird lovers who lobbied the state to create a new place for terns and gulls. Experts identified a piece of land nearby and turned it into suitable habitat – removing trees and adding sand. 

The birds returned from their winter homes and happily settled in, but there’s a problem with the new arrangement as Sandy Hausman reports.

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New lawsuit challenges sentence credits budget amendment

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

Incarcerated people across Virginia are hoping a new lawsuit from the ACLU might help them get out of prison when they expected to instead of unexpectedly serving more time.  Michael Pope explains why.

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With ‘Raising Lazarus’, Roanoke author Macy finds positives amid the opioid crisis

After covering the nation’s opioid crisis in the book and streaming series ‘Dopesick,’ Roanoke journalist and author Beth Macy has checked in with a second book on the issue. 

‘Raising Lazarus’ updates efforts to treat people struggling with addiction rather than send them to jail, and seek justice against drug manufacturers.

Macy talked with Jeff Bossert.

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Full Disclosure Briefing: The Inflation Reduction Act

We’ve all felt the sting of high inflation over the past few months.  So can federal legislation slow the climb of consumer prices?

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

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Va. News: Stafford County outdoor event fallout, a Centerville cold case

Credit: VPAP

Police are hoping the public will provide more than just information to help solve a Centerville cold case from the 90’s. And, Stafford County school division leaders are apologizing for holding an outdoor event in weather that left many people struggling in the heat.

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 with VPAP.

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For many across Virginia, dental health care is still out of reach—these programs are trying to bridge the gap

Until last summer, nearly 5 million Virginians lacked dental insurance.

Expansions to Medicaid in the past year have helped, but as Roxy Todd reports, there’s still a shortage of dentists in parts of the Commonwealth who are willing to accept low-income patients.

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Charlottesville residents reflect five years after Unite the Right

Nichole Flores (L), Mariana Teles, Hudson Galino and Thais Teles observe a moment of silence at UVA for the victims of Unite the Right. (Credit: Sandy Hausman)

Five years after neo-Nazis and other white supremacists marched in Charlottesville, the city is still reflecting on what happened.

Several residents shared their stories and their conclusions with Sandy Hausman.   

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Pope & Schapiro: Virginia governors with presidential aspirations

Many Republicans are encouraging Glenn Youngkin to run for president, but he’s not the first Virginia governor to consider a campaign for the White House.

Jeff Schapiro of the Richmond Times-Dispatch and Michael Pope take a look at governor’s who have considered hitting the campaign trail for national office.

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Cville photographer presents The Story of Us

Photos of those who stood-up to Unite the Right and their stories will be featured on Charlottesville’s downtown mall through September. (Credit: Eze Amos)

As Charlottesville observes the fifth anniversary of Unite the Right, a photographer who documented the Summer of Hate five years ago presents a show in the trees along the city’s downtown mall.

Rather than focus on right-wing extremists, it features those who stood up to them.  Sandy Hausman has that story.

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1 in 10 children in Virginia suffer from anxiety or depression, study finds

Newly released data shows that about 1 in 10 Virginia children are experiencing mental health problems. As Mallory Noe-Payne reports, those numbers are on par with the national average. 

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Get up close with Virginia’s first offshore wind turbines

Dominion Energy has studied these test turbines and is ready to build 176 more. (Credit: Sandy Hausman)

State regulators have now approved plans for the largest offshore wind farm in the nation.

Already, Dominion Energy has completed testing of two turbines off the coast of Virginia Beach.  

Sandy Hausman joined other journalists on a trip to see how those windmills are working, when we can expect to see more, and how much this might cost consumers.

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“Cups and Claws” offers a relaxing environment for potential adopters

Credit: Sandy Hausman / RADIO IQ

The market for coffee shops is highly competitive, but a Virginia couple may have an edge at their new café.  It’s called Cups and Claws, and allows customers to hang out with cats.  Sandy Hausman has that story.

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Full Disclosure Briefing: The Misery Index

In the dictionary of economic terms, “misery index” sounds particularly menacing.  So what exactly is it?

Roben Farzad, host of the Full Disclosure podcast, and Craig Wright explain it and its impact.

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Va. News: Charlottesville plastic bag tax, Virginia Beach police encrypt communications

Credit: VPAP

Virginia Beach police will no longer allow the public to listen in on radio communications. And, Charlottesville has joined the effort to reduce plastic bag pollution with a targeted tax.

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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Electric bike-share program in New River Valley abruptly shuts down

Outside the Christiansburg Recreation Center, near the Huckleberry Trail, a sign is posted beside an empty bike rack that reads: “Do not attempt to rent/use the bikes.” The bikes themselves appear to have disappeared. Aug 2, 2022. (Credit: Roxy Todd / RADIO IQ)

Several electric bike and scooter sharing programs across Virginia have stopped abruptly after the company, Bolt Mobility, has seemingly stopped operations. Roxy Todd reports that it’s caught local officials in the New River Valley off guard, and without a plan to move forward.

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Pope & Schapiro: Kansas abortion vote, Youngkin listening tour and classroom cameras

What impacts could the Kansas abortion vote have here in Virginia?

Jeff Schapiro of the Richmond Times-Dispatch and Michael Pope discuss that and all of this week’s political happenings.

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AG Miyares joining effort to cut down on scam robocalls

Credit: Jason Miyares’ Facebook Page

Attorney General Jason Miyares is working with a bipartisan group of AGs from across the country to crack down on robocalls. Michael Pope reports.

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Should Virginia teachers be allowed to bring guns into the classroom?

As concern over school shootings increases, some say teachers should be able to bring guns to the classroom. Michael Pope reports.

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After a years-long effort, Virginia will soon do away with a tax on menstrual products

Sometimes the path between an idea and a law takes years of effort as advocates try and fail multiple times before they achieve success. Michael Pope reports on the six-year effort to remove Virginia’s tax on menstrual products.

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Virginia’s Moton Museum added to Brown v. Board of Education National Historic Park

In 1954, the Supreme Court did away with legal segregation of schools in Brown versus the Board of Education.  Today, there’s a national park in Kansas celebrating that case, but there were other places involved in the lawsuit – one here in Virginia – and Congress has now made it part of the park, as Sandy Hausman reports.

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Full Disclosure Briefing: JetBlue and Spirit announce plans to merge

Last week, JetBlue and Spirit announced plans to merge. The new company would become the country’s fifth largest airline – if federal regulators approve.

Roben Farzad, host of the Full Disclosure podcast, and host Craig Wright discuss the potential merger and what it could mean for Virginia travelers.

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Environmentalists worry climate legislation may lead to weakened permitting process

The Mountain Valley Pipeline has encountered a number of setbacks from courts and regulators throughout the permitting process. Michael Pope reports environmentalists are worried Congress may soon take action to weaken that process.

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Va. News: South American rodents, historic flour mill closure

Credit: VPAP

The imminent closing of a historic Virginia flour mill has caused a run on its products. And, the state is gearing up to deal with an invasion of South American rodents.

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 with the Virginia Public Access Project.

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One Virginia congressman wants to put cameras into classrooms

Cameras are used to monitor security in many schools.  But what about cameras to monitor what’s being taught? As Michael Pope reports, that’s become a topic of discussion in a congressional race.

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Pope & Schapiro: Chips, approval ratings and an old scandal

An old, alleged scandal is back in the news.

Jeff Schapiro, political columnist at the Richmond Times-Dispatch, and Michael Pope discuss the week in politics and the General Assembly.

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Could Virginia play a role in the national semiconductor push?

Virginia already has one manufacturing facility for semiconductors.  It’s in Prince William County in northern Virginia.

But, as Michael Pope reports, new federal money to encourage fabrication plants could be coming to Virginia.

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Virginia Aquarium expecting endangered crocodile eggs to hatch this summer

A tomistoma eyes the camera. (Credit: Virginia Aquarium / Wendy Nelson)

Staff at the Virginia Aquarium are keeping a watchful eye on over a dozen white eggs expected to hatch this summer.

It will be cause for celebration since they were laid by an animal that’s threatened worldwide, but the rest of us might feel a little nervous as 14 baby tomistomas arrive. Sandy Hausman has that story.

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Blue Ridge Poison Center: Delta-8 THC edibles driving jump in calls

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

The Blue Ridge Poison Center at UVA Health is fielding a significant influx of calls over adverse reactions to a substance derived from hemp and marijuana plants. Nick Gilmore reports.

You can reach the Blue Ridge Poison Center at 1-800-222-1222.

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Buchanan County flooding reignites debate over Virginia’s RGGI membership

Recent flooding in Southwest Virginia is reopening debate about Virginia’s participation in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative. Michael Pope reports.

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New tourism grants seek to keep Virginians in state for their vacations

Communities across Virginia are about to launch new tourism initiatives. As Michael Pope reports, they’ll be encouraging people to drive to destinations in Virginia rather than flying out of state for vacations.

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A call to ban menhaden fishing from a surprising place

(Credit: VIMS)

For more than a decade, environmentalists and sportsmen have asked the state to ban industrial fishing for menhaden – a tiny, oil-rich fish that feeds striped bass, bluefish, marine birds and mammals. 

This year, a company that uses menhaden in fish oil supplements gave some $2,700 dollars in campaign contributions to Democrats — and ten times that much to Republicans, according to data from the Virginia Public Access Project. 

But as Sandy Hausman reports, a member of the GOP is now leading the charge to end menhaden fishing in the Chesapeake Bay.

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Full Disclosure Briefing: The labor force squeeze

Virginia saw a big drop in unemployment in June.  But the Now-Hiring signs are still out for all sorts of businesses and industries.

Roben Farzad, host of the Full Disclosure podcast, and Weekend Edition host Craig Wright explore the work force squeeze.

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State economy shows signs of growth, but many Virginians are still outside the labor force

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

The economy may be on the threshold of recession, depending on what metric you want to use to define recession. But, as Michael Pope tells us, Virginia’s economy is showing strong signs of growth.

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Book explores memories of Appalachians forced to leave their land to build National Parks, dams and roads

Hankin family: The home of Harriet Hankins in the area of the proposed town at Norris Dam, 1933. (Credit: Lewis Hine Photographs for the Tennessee Valley Authority, Records of the Tennessee Valley Authority, Record Group 142, National Archives, Atlanta)

Imagine being told the government needed your land and you had a few weeks or months to move. This happened to thousands of people, to make room for national parks, and hydroelectric dams. Roxy Todd spoke with the editor of a new book, called “Lost in Transition,” about those who were forced to leave home.

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