Study recommends major improvements in Hampton Roads to address sea level rise; Pipeline developers asking judge to remove protesters in trees; Metro shutdown causing huge delays and more headlines

Virginia Mercury

Our daily roundup of headlines from Virginia and elsewhere.

• A first-of-its-kind study of sea level rise in Hampton Roads by the Navy, Norfolk and Virginia Beach recommends major infrastructure improvements to address sea level rise and flooding. “The message is clear: There are bases threatened by climate change,” said Joe Bouchard, former commanding officer of Naval Station Norfolk. – The Virginian-Pilot

• With the two-year anniversary of a deadly white supremacist rally in Charlottesville approaching, more than two dozen criminal and civil trials have been heard or are pending. – The Daily Progress

• A judge in Richmond ruled the city must provide an activist with documents detailing a $1.4 billion plan to build a coliseum spearheaded by Dominion Energy CEO Tom Farrell. – Richmond Times-Dispatch

• After over-enrolling its freshman class, Virginia Tech is offering some incoming students cash scholarships if they agree to take a gap year. – The Roanoke Times

• Developers of the Mountain Valley Pipeline are asking a judge to remove protesters who have been living in trees to block construction since September. Advocates say the 267-day protest is the “longest active blockade of a pipeline on the East Coast.” – The Roanoke Times

• The state has quarantined certain agricultural products in Frederick County to protect against the spread of the spotted lanternfly, a dreaded agricultural pest. – WAMU

• After learning their decision to cut fees for concealed carry permits might reduce operational funding for the sheriff’s department, Bedford County leaders debated reconsidering the move. “We are going to tax other citizens to support a hobby,” said one supervisor. Another shot back that, “Defending my life is not a hobby.” – The News & Advance

• Sen. Tim Kaine said the ceilings of the Virginia Senate and House chambers are “circled by gold-embossed tobacco leaves.” Politifact says he’s wrong on two counts – the ceiling isn’t gold embossed (the state uses much cheaper metal paint) and the leaves are more likely laurel. “Tobacco doesn’t have berries.” – WCVE

• A summerlong shutdown of six Metro stations in Northern Virginia is causing considerable delays, despite replacement buses set up to ferry passengers. “One commuter reported that it took nearly two hours to get from the Eisenhower Avenue station to Crystal City because the driver didn’t know the route, had to backtrack, skipped some stops . . . and then the bus broke down.” – The Washington Post

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