A $1,000 reward for a blackface photo; new information on the Amazon deal; two Republicans say they won’t run for reelection and other headlines

Virginia Mercury

Our daily roundup of headlines from Virginia and elsewhere.

• The Republican Party of Virginia says it will give $1,000 to anyone who turns up a photo of Attorney General Mike Herring in blackface. Asked for comment, Herring’s spokesman responded, “Seriously?” – The Washington Post

• A video archive of Charlottesville’s last City Council meeting was replaced with an anti-abortion video that included a shot gun, an attack on a doctor and kidnapping. Officials blamed a technical glitch. – The Daily Progress

• The chief of police in Roanoke apologized for his remarks during a presentation on rape statistics that “too many young women put themselves at risk when alcohol and social behavior goes bad.” One council member said, “he blamed the victims, and we should never blame the victims.” – The Roanoke Times

• Arlington County released the terms of its $23-million local incentive deal with Amazon, which primarily requires them to fill a certain amount of office space. Activists had hoped it would include living wage requirements for construction workers and provisions to address affordable housing. – The Washington Post

• New rules from the Trump administration mean the Virginia Department of Health will no longer be able to help patients secure an abortion and limits who can provide pregnancy counseling. – WCVE

• State lawmakers set aside more money for school counselors, but it’s just a fraction of the $85 million that advocacy groups say is needed to fully staff public schools. – WVTF

• Elder abuse cases rose 9 percent over the last fiscal year, “with some 11,924 Virginians suffering some kind of neglect or physical, mental or financial abuse.” – Daily Press

• The Virginia Beach jail is getting an extra $1 million from the state to improve treatment of mentally ill inmates. – The Virginian-Pilot

• A former state delegate from Virginia Beach is facing federal charges that he helped game procurement contracts. – The Virginian-Pilot

• State officials say construction is complete on $132 million in upgrades to a CSX rail yard in Richmond that will allow passenger trains to bypass what had been a bottle neck. – Richmond Times-Dispatch

• Sen. Bill Carrico, R-Grayson, says he’s not running for reelection. He’s among the state’s most socially conservative lawmakers, championing legislation this year that would have required public schools to offer bible study as an elective. And he is one of two senators who walked off the floor this year to avoid voting on the appointment of an openly gay judge. – The Roanoke Times

• And Del. Steve Landes, R-Weyeres Cave, a ranking member of House appropriations, announced he’s instead planning to run for Augusta County clerk of court. – News Leader

• Republicans say they’re hopeful they’ll be able to hold onto their majority in the General Assembly despite swift headwinds. “Republicans showed leadership at a time where there was a lot of lack of leadership and chaos and embarrassment from the executive branch,” said House Speaker Kirk Cox. – WVTF

From The Bulletin, the Mercury’s blog, where we post quick hits on the news of the day, odds and ends and commentary.