COMMENTARY

By Karla LoebLast month, a broad coalition of clean energy companies including energy efficiency providers, rooftop solar installers and utility scale renewable energy developers joined with leading environmental groups and Democratic lawmakers to unveil the key pillars that will make up the Virginia Clean Economy Act, a bill that...
Shortly after Barack Obama won his first term as president, I was sitting in a courthouse in South Louisiana waiting for the start of a proceeding in a trial I was covering.The sheriff's deputies who patrolled the courthouse were chatting with clerks about the havoc the new president-elect was...
By Sarah Bedard HollandAs the 2020 legislative session begins, a recent study from Virginia’s Department of Medical Assistance Services on emergency department use for dental issues among Medicaid recipients shows an unavoidable truth: Virginians are in desperate need of oral health care. Under Virginia’s current Medicaid program, adults in Virginia...
Climate and energy activists have been pinning their hopes on the 2020 legislative session to produce a framework for transitioning our economy to 100 percent carbon-free energy.After years of talking big but delivering little in the way of carbon reductions and clean energy, the General Assembly is under...
Athletes at Virginia colleges, unpaid stars in one of America’s richest sports entertainment enterprises, could be compensated for the first time for the commercial use of their names, images and likenesses under new state legislation.Three bills, one by a Democrat and two by Republicans, await action in the just-opened...
By Alexa Capeloto In April 2018, the public learned that George Mason University had let the Charles Koch Foundation have a say in the hiring and review of faculty. The revelation confirmed long-held suspicions that Virginia’s largest public university was susceptible to pressure from wealthy people who make big donations...
Good morning from the Mercury! Mercury commentary ICYMI: Guest columnist Joyce Barnes, a home health worker, remembers the moment her teenage grandson, in his first job as a janitor, outstripped her earnings. She says it's time to boost Virginia's minimum wage. Former State Air Pollution Control Board member and retired UVA...
By Joyce BarnesWhen my grandson was 15, he got a job as a janitor. He was so excited to have a few dollars in his pocket. When I asked him how much he was making, I found out he was making $10.50 an hour. That’s $2.25 more than I...
On Jan. 7, 2019, I posed the following question about the Atlantic Coast Pipeline compressor station proposed for Union Hill: “Is an African-American community in rural Virginia the right place to put a massive compressor station for a natural gas pipeline? This is the question the Virginia Air Pollution...
By Kathay FengVoters should choose their representatives. This is the simple notion that forms the foundation of our democratic system.The philosophy is embedded in the United States’ Constitution’s opening three words, “We the People.” It inspired the 17th Amendment that declared that Americans should elect their senators directly....