Allison Winter

Allison Winter

Allison Winter is a Washington D.C. correspondent for States Newsroom, a network of state-based nonprofit news outlets that includes the Virginia Mercury.

USDA’s climate grants for farms and forests run into Republican buzzsaw

By: - August 10, 2023

WASHINGTON — The Biden administration is spending more than $3 billion to cultivate more American farmers and forest landowners as partners to mitigate climate change — even while some Republicans on Capitol Hill try to stop the program entirely. The administration launched a new farm program, Partnerships for Climate Smart Commodities, this year. It is […]

U.S. Supreme Court justices cast doubt on affirmative action in college admissions

By: - November 2, 2022

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Supreme Court’s conservative majority on Monday questioned the legality of race-conscious policies in college admissions, as the justices weighed two cases that could upend the admissions process many schools use to try to boost diversity on campus. At issue are two cases that challenge the lawfulness of affirmative action at Harvard University, […]

Farm bill season arrives: What’s the outlook for 2023?

By: - August 15, 2022

WASHINGTON — Over the course of the next year, lawmakers on the U.S. House and Senate agriculture committees will draft a new federal farm bill that will shape food, farm, conservation and nutrition programs across the country for the next five years. The omnibus law that began 90 years ago as crop support legislation now […]

Federal lawmakers aim to crack down on ‘dark patterns’ that trick users online

By: - June 28, 2022

WASHINGTON — Tech companies sometimes lure users to sign up for a service or share information they might not have agreed to otherwise by using subtle tactics and marketing on their websites and apps, like surveys that mine for personal information or designs that hide privacy settings. But these practices — commonly called “dark patterns” […]

As insulin costs soar, diabetics say a $35 federal cap on co-pays is not enough

By: - June 15, 2022

WASHINGTON — Lacy Mason was a 21-year-old graduate student in Atlanta when she started rationing her insulin. As a Type 1 diabetic, she needs to take insulin every day for survival. But when the cost surged to $960 a month, Mason could no longer afford it. She had aged out of Medicaid and her student […]

Virginia, other states win federal grants to expand affordable high-speed internet

By: - June 7, 2022

WASHINGTON —  The U.S. Treasury Department on Tuesday announced the first state awards will go to Virginia, Louisiana, New Hampshire and West Virginia in a massive federal effort to bring affordable, high-speed internet to all American homes and businesses. Projects in the four states are the first to receive funding as part of a $10 billion […]

Kaine wants to bring ‘Virginia Plan’ for gun violence prevention to federal level

By: - June 6, 2022

ARLINGTON —  In a talk with high school students Monday, Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine said that after years of congressional inaction on gun violence, he is hopeful lawmakers may be able to make some progress this month.  It was the second time in the past five years that Kaine has visited Wakefield High School. The […]

New federal programs offer Virginia households a subsidy for affordable high-speed internet  

By: - May 17, 2022

Federal and state officials are rolling out a fleet of new programs in an expansive effort to bring faster and less expensive internet to all Virginians, especially those who have had trouble connecting in the past. The Biden administration announced last week an agreement with internet providers that will effectively offer free internet access to […]

State Supreme Court vacancies remain unfilled during political standoff

By: - May 9, 2022

Two vacant seats in the Virginia Supreme Court hang in the balance in the political standoff in the Virginia Assembly.  State lawmakers said in interviews this week that their negotiations over the justices continue but indicated they are no closer to resolution. “We do not have an agreement on how to proceed with the Senate,” […]

Navy, lawmakers investigate after suicides among crew at carrier in Newport News

By: - May 4, 2022

The Navy is investigating three apparent suicides that happened last month among the crew of the aircraft carrier USS George Washington, currently docked for an extensive maintenance and overhaul in Newport News. The recent spate of suicides, which happened within one week in April, add to the tragic toll of the ship. Nine crew members […]

Upcoming U.S. Supreme Court cases could curb colleges’ use of affirmative action

By: - March 31, 2022

WASHINGTON — A U.S. Supreme Court dominated by conservative justices could fundamentally reshape the college admissions process later this year when it takes up two landmark cases challenging affirmative action in higher education. The court recently agreed to hear two cases that challenge race-conscious admissions programs at Harvard University the nation’s oldest private university and the University of […]

Cabinet pick to ‘change the trajectory of the commonwealth’

By: - January 15, 2022

Kay Coles James, Gov.-elect Glenn Youngkin’s new secretary of the commonwealth, is a staunch conservative with an unconventional origin story in Virginia.  James was born in Portsmouth, grew up in public housing with a family she has described as “dysfunctional” and was eventually raised by her aunt and uncle. As a seventh grader, she was […]