Governor calls state of emergency to prepare for Category 4 Hurricane Dorian; Virginia is the worst state for workers again and more headlines

Our daily roundup of headlines from Virginia and elsewhere.

• “Gov. Ralph Northam declared a state of emergency Monday as Hampton Roads braced for a storm that experts say could bring punishing winds, coastal flooding and several inches of rain to the region on Thursday and early Friday. Though the forecast could still significantly change by the end of the week, the Category 4 Hurricane Dorian is expected to continue north, churning along just off the U.S. East Coast.” – The Virginian-Pilot

• Oxfam ranked Virginia the worst state for workers for the second year running, citing poor worker protections and a low minimum wage. – VPM

• Despite record spending on overdose antidotes like naloxone, health officials say opioid deaths in Virginia are on track to hit their highest levels ever this year. – Richmond Times-Dispatch

• Donors earmarked a $50 million gift to George Mason University – the state’s largest public university – specifically to “promote the conservative principles of governance.” University officials say there was nothing improper about the requirement, but some faculty members say it raises concerns about academic freedom. – Associated Press

• About two dozen people crowded into a Bland County convenience store to hear Democratic presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke speak. “It’s nice to be in a room with a bunch of Democrats,” said one attendee. “This is all of us,” another joked. – The Roanoke Times

• Many law enforcement agencies aren’t reporting police shootings as required under a new state law. “Of the 85 police shootings in which a civilian was injured or killed between July 1, 2016 and Dec. 31, 2018, just 60 were included in the annual state police reports.” – The News & Advance

• “Del. Dawn Adams, D-Richmond, on Friday responded to a lawsuit filed by a former aide, arguing in court that she doesn’t owe any damages while not denying she accessed the aide’s personal Facebook and Gmail accounts.” – Richmond Times-Dispatch

• In deep-red far Southwest Virginia, a lone Democrat is making a run for office. – The Roanoke Times

• Queen of Virginia Skill & Entertainment hired Democratic Party chairwoman Susan Swecker to look into an announcement by the Charlottesville Commonwealth’s Attorney Office that the company’s “skill games” violate state anti-gambling laws. Swecker said that while she called several Democratic lawmakers, she was acting in her capacity as a private consultant and not lobbying. – Richmond Times-Dispatch

• The only electric scooter operator in Richmond quietly blocked its fleet from entering from a large public housing community. – Style Weekly

• The first standalone public Montessori school in the state opened in Arlington. – ARLnow

• Fairfax police are training emotional support dogs to help “first responders cope with the stress of the job.” – The Washington Post

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