Author

Sarah Vogelsong

Sarah Vogelsong

Sarah is Editor-in-Chief of the Mercury and previously its environment and energy reporter. She has worked for multiple Virginia and regional publications, including Chesapeake Bay Journal, The Progress-Index and The Caroline Progress. Her reporting has won awards from groups such as the Society of Environmental Journalists and Virginia Press Association, and she is an alumna of the Columbia Energy Journalism Initiative and Metcalf Institute Science Immersion Workshop for Journalists. She is a graduate of the College of William and Mary. Contact her at [email protected]

Virginia reports first monkeypox death

By: - December 1, 2022

Virginia reported its first death from monkeypox Thursday, one of only 15 that have occurred nationwide since the most recent outbreak began in May. The Virginia Department of Health said the deceased was an adult resident of the Eastern Health Region, an area encompassing Hampton Roads, the Eastern Shore and the upper peninsulas. No other […]

Virginia reports first pediatric flu death of season as cases remain high

By: - November 30, 2022

Virginia recorded its first influenza-related pediatric death of the 2022-23 flu season Wednesday. According to a release from the Virginia Department of Health, a child between the ages of 5 and 12 in the state’s southwestern region died “from complications associated with influenza.”  “Flu can be a very dangerous illness,” said State Health Commissioner Colin […]

Virginia Rep. Donald McEachin dies at 61

By: - November 28, 2022

Virginia Congressman Donald McEachin, a Democrat who represented the commonwealth’s 4th District, died Monday night, according to a statement from his office. He had recently won re-election Nov. 8. “Valiantly, for years now, we have watched him fight and triumph over the secondary effects of his colorectal cancer from 2013,” said the statement. “Tonight, he […]

After Chesapeake, UVA shootings, Youngkin to propose mental health agenda

By: and - November 23, 2022

Following the second mass shooting in Virginia in as many weeks that left 7 dead as of midday Wednesday, Republican Gov. Glenn Youngkin said his administration plans to propose legislation to the General Assembly this winter to bolster mental health resources.  While offering few details to reporters following an annual Thanksgiving ceremony, Youngkin said his […]

Albemarle court rejects earned sentence credit challenge 

By: - November 22, 2022

After an Albemarle judge struck down from the bench a challenge to the General Assembly’s last-minute change to a program that granted early release for state inmates with a record of good behavior, the American Civil Liberties Union of Virginia said it plans to appeal the ruling to the state Supreme Court.  “You have to […]

Warner, Kaine vote to end COVID-19 national emergency

By: - November 16, 2022

Virginia Sens. Mark Warner and Tim Kaine were among 12 Senate Democrats who joined Republicans Tuesday to vote in favor of ending the national emergency related to the COVID-19 pandemic that was first declared by former President Donald Trump in March 2020.  The resolution, which would need to be passed by the U.S. House before […]

Election Day is today. Here’s what to know. 

By: and - November 8, 2022

As it does every year in Virginia — one of just four states in the U.S. to hold general elections every single year — Election Day has arrived. Campaigns have dragged on for months. Pundits have pontificated. Polls have been cast, collected, analyzed and publicized.  Now it comes down to this: each one of us […]

Virginia has a ‘Victims of Communism Memorial Day’

By: - November 7, 2022

Election Day is this week’s marquee event, but Virginia has another little-known day on its November calendar: the Victims of Communism Memorial Day, which the commonwealth has recognized since 2018 on Nov. 7.  “Based on the economic philosophies of Karl Marx, communism has proven incompatible with the ideals of liberty, prosperity, and dignity of human […]

National Academies report says Virginia gold mining regulations are inadequate

By: - November 1, 2022

With exploration for gold continuing in Buckingham County, a report by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine found Virginia’s current system of regulating gold mining “is not adequate to address the potential impacts” of commercial extraction.  “Virginia’s regulatory framework lacks an adequate financial assurance system, which poses a fiscal and environmental risk to […]

Around Virginia, respiratory illnesses surge among children

By: - October 31, 2022

Hospitals statewide are seeing an uptick in respiratory illnesses, especially among young children, with some pediatric units already full or close to full weeks before the typical season when flu and other respiratory viruses surge.  “The thing that is surprising to all of us is the early onslaught and ferocity of this year’s respiratory season,” […]

Supreme Court of Virginia upholds decision on Dominion carbon market charge

By: - October 28, 2022

Utility regulators met state legal requirements in approving a charge added to Dominion Energy Virginia bills to pay for participation in a regional carbon market, the Supreme Court of Virginia ruled Thursday.  The charge, which equaled roughly $2.39 extra on the monthly bill of the average residential customer, stopped being added to bills in July […]

Virginia Supreme Court upholds ‘open courts,’ narrows FOIA personnel exemption 

By: - October 23, 2022

The Supreme Court of Virginia handed down two decisions Thursday in support of greater transparency in public access to both court hearings and information on government employees.  Megan Rhyne, executive director of the Virginia Coalition for Open Government, called the dual transparency rulings, which were unanimous and penned by two different judges, surprising. “We haven’t […]