News

Speaker of the House of Delegates, Kirk Cox, R-Colonial Heights, stands in the chamber. (Ned Oliver/Virginia Mercury)

GOP leader cancels redistricting floor session

BY: - October 5, 2018

Virginia House of Delegates Speaker Kirk Cox, R-Colonial Heights, canceled a floor session scheduled for Oct. 21 and 22 after Gov. Ralph Northam, a Democrat, announced plans to veto a Republican-drafted map to fix 11 House districts a court has ruled were racially gerrymandered. Cox filed a status report with the Eastern District Court “noting […]

Virginia sees surge in West Nile virus

BY: - October 5, 2018

So far this year there have been 38 cases of West Nile virus in Virginia, a new record for the state. On average, Virginia reports only about nine cases per year, according to the Department of Health. The cases have been spotted in 17 health districts across the state, with Fairfax seeing the most at […]

Banning the Confederate flag in schools; free camping in the pipeline’s path; a record-setting watermelon and more

BY: - October 5, 2018

NEWS TO KNOW Our daily roundup of headlines from Virginia and elsewhere. School board considers changing dress code to ban Confederate flag images  The Charlottesville School Board has shown some support for a resolution that would change the dress code to ban images of the Confederate battle flag, Nazi swastikas and any “images associated with […]

VCU Professor Kathryn Howell, who co-founded the RVA Eviction Lab, presented research on the link between evictions and instability in public schools in Richmond during a recent meeting of the statewide Campaign to Reduce Evictions.

Among fixes to reduce evictions: more pro-bono lawyers, plain-English legal forms and poverty simulation for judges

BY: - October 5, 2018

When it comes to doing something about the highest-in-the-nation eviction rates in Virginia’s cities, advocates say there’s no silver bullet. Instead, they’re pursuing dozens of possible policy fixes. Some would require legislative action and possibly state funding, such as a proposed eviction diversion program. Others would not. Among them is a proposal for district court […]

Northam’s new ‘Conservation Cabinet’ aims to coordinate environmental protection across state agencies but probably won’t tackle pipelines

BY: - October 5, 2018

Gov. Ralph Northam announced the creation of a “Governor’s Conservation Cabinet” Thursday intended to better protect the state’s natural resources and improve environmental quality. But there’s one thing that the group likely won’t deal with: the two major pipeline projects that have become the most contentious environmental issues in Virginia. “I think that we have […]

Report estimates Medicaid work requirement will cost state $25 million

BY: - October 4, 2018

The price tag attached to the proposed Medicaid work requirement that is making its way through a public comment period now could be as high as $25 million, according to the Commonwealth Institute for Fiscal Analysis. And meanwhile, the institute, a liberal-leaning nonprofit that performs fiscal and policy analysis, estimates that 21,600 people could be […]

Virginia Mercury

A dream of a new bridge to Maryland; Norfolk Southern’s possible new headquarters; a man lost in a landfill and more

BY: - October 4, 2018

NEWS TO KNOW Our daily roundup of headlines from Virginia and elsewhere. Local Virginia leaders are ready for a new bridge into Maryland Loudon County leaders are ready to find another way across the Potomac River into Montgomery County, Md. Loudoun leaders picked two future crossing locations out on Tuesday, but will hold off making […]

Professional wrestler Ric Flair in 2010. (Wikimedia/Creative Commons)

Meet the state regulators who keep the blood out of pro wrestling

BY: - October 4, 2018

Better Know a Board is an occasional series exploring some of Virginia’s more obscure state boards and commissions. Name: Boxing, Martial Arts and Professional Wrestling Advisory Board. Purpose: To provide guidance on the regulations of fighting sports, both real and scripted. Meeting location: An office park in Henrico County. Regulating boxing and martial arts make […]

The Virginia House of Delegates met Thursday to discuss redistricting, but didn't get far. (Ned Oliver/Virginia Mercury - Aug. 30, 2018)

GMU professor relaunches 41-year-old almanac with focus on women in Virginia politics

BY: - October 4, 2018

A George Mason University professor is reviving a 41-year-old record book of state government information, this time online and with a focus on women in Virginia politics. Toni-Michelle Travis, along with seven GMU students in the Schar School of Policy, is working on a new and improved digital version of the Almanac of Virginia Politics that she […]

Virginia Mercury

State awards $6 million to organizations to increase contraception access

BY: - October 3, 2018

In an effort to improve access to family-planning options, the state has awarded $6 million to 12 health care organizations across Virginia so they can provide long-acting reversible contraceptives (LARCs) to their patients through May 2020. The program, dubbed the Virginia LARC initiative, is meant to help reduce unintended pregnancies, according to a Virginia Department […]

Virginia Mercury

Stewart goes all-in on unsubstantiated claims; slot machines coming; Liberty’s assets top $3 billion; cattle rustling in Augusta and other news

BY: - October 3, 2018

NEWS TO KNOW Our daily roundup of headlines from Virginia and elsewhere. In last debate, Stewart goes all-in on unsubstantiated sexual assault claim Corey Stewart really wants you to know that Congress has paid $17.2 million to federal employees to settle violations for employment rules, in some cases for sexual harassment. He repeated the figure […]

Most teens who age out of foster care have trouble getting a driver’s license and it affects everything they do

BY: - October 3, 2018

When Allison Gilbreath held a work group in 2016 on youth aging out of foster care without a driver’s license, every single person — all young adults who had turned 18 while still in the foster care system — showed up 30 or 45 minutes late because they were relying on someone else for a […]