THE BULLETIN — News to know

Quick hits on the news of the day, odds and ends and commentary.

Virginia’s era as a swing state may be over, districts refuse to reveal schools’ COVID case counts, Danville grapples with its identity, and more headlines

NEWS TO KNOW Our daily roundup of headlines from Virginia and elsewhere.• Don’t expect any presidential candidates to come calling in Virginia this year. Our era as a swing state appears to be over. “There’s really no discussion about the state being in play.”—Washington Post• Voters stood in line for hours Friday as early voting locations opened. On Saturday, a group of Trump supporters waved flags and chanted “four more years” outside Fairfax County's government center, prompting concerns from election officials about voter intimidation.—Washington Post, New York Times• “Sen. Emmett Hanger, a moderate Republican who bucked his party to expand Virginia’s Medicaid program, is launching...

Virginia politicians react to death of Supreme Court justice, political battle over filling her seat

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the longest-serving member of the court's liberal minority, died Friday night after a struggle with pancreatic cancer, touching off both tributes and a war of words about filling her seat in a fraught election year.Virginia Sens. Tim Kaine and Mark Warner, both Democrats, called her a "giant."Warner said history would remember her as a "trailblazer and a voice for liberty and equality."https://twitter.com/MarkWarner/status/1307115344012738560?s=20Kaine, in a statement, said she left behind a "legal system far fairer than the one she found as one of only nine women in her first-year Harvard Law class."Kaine added:...

A child died of COVID-19, health officials say — the first in Virginia

The Virginia Department of Health confirmed the first death of a child in Virginia due to COVID-19, according to a Friday news release.The patient was "an adolescent resident in the Southside Health District" — which includes Boydton, Lawrenceville, and Halifax — who tested positive for the virus. VDH listed the patient's age as between 10 and 19, but declined to release more specific information to protect the privacy of the family, according to the release.“We were extremely saddened to learn of the loss of the state’s first adolescent with COVID-19," state Health Commissioner Dr. Norman Oliver said in a...
Virginia Mercury

In-person voting begins, Kanye remains booted from Va. ballot, Culpeper County sheriff shares debunked Facebook post, and more headlines

NEWS TO KNOW Our daily roundup of headlines from Virginia and elsewhere.• In-person voting begins in Virginia today.—Roanoke Times• A month in, the General Assembly’s special session is still going and House and Senate lawmakers are getting increasingly testy about the slow pace of work. Lawmakers promised to present their proposed revisions to the budget “very soon.”—Virginian-Pilot• Kanye West’s presidential ambitions in Virginia hit a dead end when the Supreme Court of Virginia denied the rapper’s request to put him back on the ballot. A judge in Richmond booted him after hearing testimony that voters were duped into signing his petitions.—WVTF• College leaders in...
Virginia Mercury

COVID cases rising faster in SW Virginia, Senate approves oversight of private detention centers, VCU researcher touts fecal transplants as potential alcoholism treatment, and more headlines

NEWS TO KNOW Our daily roundup of headlines from Virginia and elsewhere.• COVID-19 cases are rising faster in Southwest Virginia than any other region in the state. “The most concerning thing about Southwest, and I’ll repeat this, is we just don’t have the hospitals and especially the ICU capabilities,” said Gov. Ralph Northam.—Roanoke Times• “Senate lawmakers on Wednesday approved legislation that would establish state oversight of Virginia immigration facilities, allowing the state to inspect and require health safety standards of privately owned federal detention centers such as those in Caroline County and Farmville.”—Richmond Times-Dispatch• The CDC says testing delays and errors made it...

Senate approves 12-month utility debt repayment plans with bipartisan support

The Virginia Senate passed legislation Wednesday that will require all utilities except those controlled by municipal authorities to offer 12-month payment plans to residential customers who have been unable to pay their bills due to the COVID-19 pandemic.The measure passed 24-12, garnering support from four Republicans. All Democrats except Sen. Creigh Deeds of Bath County, who abstained, voted in favor of the plan.Sponsored by Sen. Jennifer McClellan, D-Richmond, the proposal codifies an order by the State Corporation Commission made in June as part of an extension of a ban on utility disconnections resulting from nonpayment of bills due to...

In-person school districts quarantine exposed students, civilian review boards clear Senate, no takers for Newport News Confederate monument, and more headlines

NEWS TO KNOW Our daily roundup of headlines from Virginia and elsewhere.• Campbell County Public Schools says 43 adults and students are quarantined after possible exposure to COVID-19. In Prince George County, 24 elementary students were moved to online-only classes after administrators say they came in contact with the virus.—News & Advance, Progress-Index• In Northern Virginia, where school districts are holding online-only classes, teachers and parents say it’s working, but it’s weird. “Sometimes,” said one teacher, “you feel as if you’re speaking to thin air. Or to no one at all.”—Washington Post• The Virginia Senate passed legislation that would empower local governments to establish...

Northam requests another extension on Virginia’s utility shutoff ban

With no clear end in sight to the Virginia General Assembly’s ongoing special session, Gov. Ralph Northam is again asking the State Corporation Commission to extend an existing moratorium on utility disconnections.The current ban is set to expire on Wednesday. But in a letter sent earlier this week, Northam asked SCC commissioners to extend the moratorium through at least Oct. 5, citing its importance in protecting public health throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.“My request for an extension will give the General Assembly the time they need to address this issue, finalize their budget and complete their important work during this...

Virginia Lottery approves sports betting rules, leaves Olympics ban intact

The Virginia Lottery Board voted Tuesday to approve the state's first-ever regulations on sports betting, making some changes in response to feedback from big gambling platforms but maintaining a ban on wagers involving the Olympic Games.Tuesday's move clears the way for the state to begin accepting applications from sports betting operators in mid-October ahead of an anticipated launch in early 2021. Sports betting is expected to begin through online platforms and mobile apps, though it could eventually expand to brick-and-mortar casinos planned in the state.After the General Assembly voted to legalize sports betting earlier this year, the Lottery was...

DC region employers foresee teleworking through summer 2021, COVIDWISE app hits 12% adoption rate, more newsroom layoffs, and more headlines

NEWS TO KNOW Our daily roundup of headlines from Virginia and elsewhere.• A federal judge in Virginia issued an arrest warrant for a neo-Nazi podcaster who promoted and attended the 2017 white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, finding the man was in “total disregard” of court orders issued in a lawsuit stemming from the event.—Associated Press• Major employers in the Washington region say it could be next summer before their workers return from teleworking.—Washington Post• Researchers at Virginia Tech are monitoring sewage on campus in an effort to detect early outbreaks of COVID-19. “It gets a little gross when you start thinking about it.”—Roanoke...