Replacing Lee-Jackson Day with Election Day, a look at Farmville’s ICE detention center, and more headlines

Virginia Mercury

NEWS TO KNOW
Our daily roundup of headlines from Virginia and elsewhere.

• Two delegates from Virginia Beach filed legislation to establish a 21-member commission to investigate the mass shooting last year at a Virginia Beach municipal building. It would be the third such investigation, but the first to take place at the state level.—The Virginian-Pilot

• An organizer of the 2017 white supremacist rally in Charlottesville has been jailed for contempt of court after a federal judge ruled he failed to turn over evidence in a civil lawsuit accusing him and other participants of orchestrating a violent conspiracy.—The Daily Progress

• Leaders in Richmond, home to the largest display of Confederate iconography in the state, passed a symbolic resolution asking the General Assembly to give local governments the authority to remove the statues. The City Council has previously voted down a similar resolution twice.—Richmond Times-Dispatch

• Gov. Ralph Northam endorsed legislation to ditch a state holiday celebrating two Confederate generals, Lee-Jackson Day, in favor of making Election Day a holiday. “It’s in honor of two individuals that fought to prolong slavery, which is not a proud aspect of Virginia’s history,” Northam said.—VPM

• Northam, acknowledging that some Democrats are having second thoughts about a redistricting constitutional amendment, said the issue could be addressed with legislation instead. “I will make sure we have a nonpartisan redistricting bill.”—Daily Press

• “The city of Alexandria plans to buy and restore Freedom House, the site of one of the nation’s most notorious pre-Civil War slave pens, and expand exhibits inside the building that showcase its cruel history.”—The Washington Post

• ICE officials gave a look inside their detention center in Farmville, which holds between 500 and 800 men and is their largest facility in the state.—WVTF

• Former Virginia Beach congressman Scott Taylor announced that he was officially dropping his run for U.S. Senate and would instead seek the Republican nomination to run for his old House seat against Democratic Rep. Elaine Luria, who beat him in 2017. He referred to her as one of “these girls that have national security backgrounds” as he discussed his bid in a radio interview.—The Washington Post

• Democratic lawmakers say they’ll consider general raises for state employees, which are not included in Northam’s budget.—Richmond Times-Dispatch

• Virginia colleges and universities awarded 122,168 bachelor’s degrees last year, the most ever and a 50 percent increase from a decade ago.—Associated Press

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