Roanoke jury awards landowners affected by Mountain Valley $430K, Chesterfield sheriff moves inmates out of Riverside, Bristol’s landfill problem, and more headlines

Our daily roundup of headlines from Virginia and elsewhere.

• “With just 3.5% of standard nasal swab tests coming back positive for the coronavirus last week, Virginia is experiencing its lowest rate of new infections since the pandemic arrived.”—Virginian-Pilot

• “Strap in, Virginia: The 2021 governor’s race is suddenly at full speed. It’s already clear that this year’s contest — which will help define the national political landscape heading into the 2022 midterm congressional elections — is likely to be a strange, expensive, surprising affair.”—Washington Post

• Presenting himself as a descendant of Robert E. Lee, the Rev. Robert W. Lee IV became a prominent voice in support of taking down Confederate statues. But it turns out there’s no evidence the two are actually related, and it appears likely he’s actually descended from a different family of Lees.—Washington Post

• The General Assembly is likely to convene for a special legislative session in late July or early August to appoint appellate judges and direct spending of federal emergency aid.—Richmond Times-Dispatch

• A Virginia Tech professor was among the scientists who struggled to convince the World Health Organization it was wrong about the spread of COVID-19 via aerosols.—Wired

• In a Democratic primary debate for the attorney general’s office, Del. Jay Jones again accused Attorney General Mark Herring of only apologizing for having worn blackface in college to salvage his political future. Herring accused Jones of sponsoring legislation that would have salvaged the payday lending industry.—Richmond Times-Dispatch

• A jury in Roanoke awarded a couple whose land was seized by developers of the Mountain Valley Pipeline $430,000, more than double what the company had been willing to pay.—Roanoke Times

• “A memorial honoring the women who fought for their right to vote was dedicated in Fairfax County, Virginia, on Sunday.”—WTOP

• “Chesterfield County Sheriff Karl Leonard announced that he’s moving incarcerated people out of the Riverside Regional Jail, which was investigated after a series of deaths in 2019 and 2020.”—VPM

• Bristol is struggling to contain odors at its landfill, which is built in an old rock quarry. “We don’t want air to ooze out of the top. That’s the biggest part.”—Bristol Herald Courier

• It’s strawberry season, and, for the most part, the weather is cooperating. “As temperatures warm there should be plenty of berries.”—News & Advance

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