News

Virginia moves to restart eviction protections after federal moratorium lapses

BY: - August 3, 2021

Virginia Democrats are moving to restart state-level eviction protections one month after allowing them to lapse. The step comes as a federal eviction moratorium ends and President Joe Biden’s administration chastised states for not implementing their own moratoriums. “There is no excuse for any state or locality not to promptly deploy the resources that Congress […]

A new grant aims to decrease social isolation among Virginia nursing home residents

BY: - August 3, 2021

Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, social isolation and loneliness were a daily reality for many nursing home residents. “It’s hard for us to imagine what it’s like to wake up every morning and think, ‘I don’t belong here,’” said Kristine Theurer, a longtime expert in senior care. As a music therapist (and later a recreation […]

U.S. Civil Rights Trail book shines light on battles to dismantle Jim Crow

BY: - August 3, 2021

TOPEKA — The roadmap of America’s struggle for civil rights runs through southern hotspots of Farmville, Selma, Memphis, Jackson, Little Rock, Montgomery, Greensboro and Birmingham while extending to the western outpost of Topeka and northern crossroads of Washington, D.C. The movement to vanquish Jim Crow segregation is a collage of sit-ins, protest marches, the endurance […]

Virginia Mercury

Spike in meth deaths, new Virginia-specific COVID modeling, Coalfields Expressway, and more headlines

BY: - August 2, 2021

NEWS TO KNOW Our daily roundup of headlines from Virginia and elsewhere. • A Republican House of Delegates candidate in Northern Virginia is under fire for comparing conservative-leaning teachers to Jewish people in Nazi Germany.—Washington Post • Methamphetamine-related deaths spiked last year in Virginia as part of a broader surge in drug overdoses.—Roanoke Times • Some Hampton Roads […]

Virginia legislators are divvying up $4.3B in federal aid. Here’s what’s in the plan.

BY: - August 2, 2021

Democrats are calling it a rare chance to make strategic spending moves that will shape Virginia’s future for years to come, an opportunity to devote big dollars to some of the state’s most pressing problems. Republicans see an exercise in one-party rule, with only Democratic leaders deciding what the top issues are and what to […]

Nonprofit says federal program could be hurting endangered Atlantic sturgeon in James River

BY: - August 2, 2021

A national environmental nonprofit is threatening to sue the federal government over its failure to examine how a program that encourages the use of waterways for shipping affects endangered species, including Atlantic sturgeon in Virginia’s James River.  Increased vessel traffic on major U.S. rivers and coasts resulting from the America’s Marine Highway Program run by […]

Virginia Mercury

Va. Dems could save $1 billion in federal relief funds, some schools keep masks mandatory, disappearing criminal charges, and more

BY: - July 30, 2021

NEWS TO KNOW Our daily roundup of headlines from Virginia and elsewhere. • Democratic leaders are planning to save up to $1 billion of the $4.3 billion Virginia received in federal ARPA relief funds. Leaving some of the money uncommitted, they say, will allow the state to adapt as pandemic recovery efforts continue.—Richmond Times-Dispatch • […]

Coal fuels less and less Virginia electricity. But when should utilities pull the plug on plants?

BY: - July 30, 2021

When Dominion Energy broke ground in 2008 on the largely coal-fired Virginia City Hybrid Energy Center, then-Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling called it “the largest economic development project in the history of Southwest Virginia.”  Today, the facility, the last coal plant to be built in Virginia, remains a local economic force, tipping more than $8.9 million […]

Virginia Mercury

Virginia hits 1,000 new COVID cases, state port rebounds, Roanoke woman enters ‘Miss Wheelchair America,’ and more

BY: - July 29, 2021

NEWS TO KNOW Our daily roundup of headlines from Virginia and elsewhere. • Virginia saw its biggest single-day increase in COVID-19 cases since April.—WVTF • The head of Virginia’s port says business has rebounded since the start of the pandemic.—Virginian-Pilot  • Nearly a decade after Bon Secours struck a deal with Richmond to expand health […]

Anemic start for Virginia’s campaign finance study could delay final report

BY: - July 29, 2021

As both political parties flood supporters with desperate-sounding pleas for money to win the 2021 elections, an effort to study campaign finance reform in Virginia is off to a decidedly less urgent start. A joint General Assembly subcommittee approved in February to study whether Virginia needs stricter laws on money in politics still hasn’t held […]

Federal funding could provide immediate relief to Virginia’s state-run mental hospitals

BY: - July 29, 2021

With Virginia’s state-run mental hospitals in the midst of a self-described crisis, Gov. Ralph Northam is proposing a $485 million investment in behavioral health services. The proposed allotment was announced Wednesday ahead of next week’s special General Assembly session, where lawmakers will decide how to distribute $4.3 billion in federal relief funding. Mental health funding […]

Bipartisan senators and Biden strike a deal on $550B in new infrastructure spending

BY: - July 28, 2021

WASHINGTON — A bipartisan group of U.S. senators say they have worked through the sticking points on a major infrastructure package, and the Senate agreed on a procedural vote on Wednesday night to advance to debate on the proposal. That announcement came a week after Republicans blocked a test vote on the deal, with GOP […]