GOVERNMENT + POLITICS

WASHINGTON — A second major coronavirus package cleared the U.S. Senate Wednesday and was signed by President Donald Trump.The bill passed 90-8, with overwhelming bipartisan support. The multi-billion dollar measure aims to slow the spread of a new coronavirus and stimulate the economy as a major recession looms.The package...
It may be the height of irony during Sunshine Week — the access and transparency community's annual love letter to open records and open meetings laws across our country — to hear me say that all the rules of open government might not apply right now.I've never been one...
Virginia General Assembly members have an expression for when opposing interests agree on a bill: they call it “peace in the valley.” The phrase comes from a gospel song by Thomas A. Dorsey, written for Mahalia Jackson and then later sung by a bunch of white guys including Red Foley...
The Virginia Department of Elections says voters will be allowed and encouraged to cast ballots by mail in May's municipal elections in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.State law requires voters to have a excuse in order to cast an absentee ballot, but officials have determined that the coronavirus outbreak...
The Virginia Department of Emergency Management, the agency that exists to handle the state's crisis response functions, is relying on telecommuting and limiting access to its emergency operations center after one of its own employees tested positive for COVID-19.VDEM spokesman Dillon Taylor said the unidentified employee is recovering and...
Virginians will see some expansion in their choice of companies to buy electricity from after two proposals killed at the urging of the state’s two largest electric monopolies, Dominion Energy and Appalachian Power Company, were unexpectedly resurrected in the waning days of the session. The bills, which still have to...
WASHINGTON — Property rights advocates and environmentalists are often foes when it comes to federal regulations. But they’ve found some common ground in their shared desire to prod Congress and the courts to overhaul the federal permitting process for natural gas pipelines. Property rights advocates contend that the current system enables...
The second week of March crashed upon an unsuspecting America with a force that only a precious and dwindling handful of Americans can appreciate.In a twinkling, life as we knew it ended, swept away in a global tsunami of panic over COVID-19, a virus that science doesn’t fully understand...
In the 2016 presidential election, almost four million Virginians cast a ballot, a solid 72 percent turnout of registered voters.But another 2.5 million people didn’t vote, according to federal estimates of the voting age population, an eye-opening measure of disinterest and disillusionment.If some non-voters think getting registered, presenting an...
Starting Sunday, Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam banned any public event with more than 100 people — part of new measures to reduce the potential spread of COVID-19, the disease caused by a new strain of coronavirus.But he stopped short of a mandatory statewide quarantine or new restrictions on bars...