Ashland farmer facing federal lawsuit over wetlands damage

BY: - November 30, 2023

An Ashland man is facing a civil lawsuit from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency over damages to 21 acres of wetlands, a natural resource with numerous environmental benefits, adjacent to tributaries of the Chickahominy and Pamunkey rivers. According to the EPA, Gary Layne, 62, and his company Chameleon, LLC “conducted extensive clearing, grubbing, earth-moving, and […]

High medical marijuana prices driving consumers elsewhere and more Va. headlines

BY: - November 29, 2023

• An increasing number of people are calling for the University of Virginia to release its independent review of the murder of three student athletes by another student last year. “Are they hiding something? I don’t know. But I know one way you can stop speculation on it: Release it to the families like you promised.”—Daily […]

Democratic control of legislature opens up chance for long-delayed SCC appointments

BY: - November 29, 2023

After securing control of both chambers of the Virginia General Assembly in the November elections, Democrats will have a new opportunity during the 2024 session to fill two long-time vacancies on the State Corporation Commission, the state body that regulates utilities, insurance, banking and business in Virginia. Incoming Senate Commerce and Labor Committee Chair Creigh […]

High fees, long waits cast shadow over new criminal expungement laws

BY: - November 29, 2023

More states are making it easier for residents to clear or seal their criminal records. The effort has drawn bipartisan support, as lawmakers across the political spectrum say it will help people find jobs and housing, in turn boosting local economies and reducing reliance on social services. “Folks that get out of jail or prison […]

Va. court: Zoning violation notices must spell out consequences of not appealing to local board

BY: - November 28, 2023

In a case involving a Chesapeake carport, the Virginia Court of Appeals ruled that zoning violation notices issued by a local government must clearly state that the property owner’s failure to contest the violation within 30 days means the decision is legally “final and unappealable.”  “Without the finality language, a property owner might logically conclude […]

High numbers of RSV cases statewide and more Va. headlines

BY: - November 28, 2023

• Virginia’s Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services is reorganizing in an attempt to carry out behavioral health reforms that are part of Gov. Glenn Youngkin’s “Right Help, Right Now” plan to improve services for people in psychiatric or substance use crises. —Richmond Times-Dispatch  • Doctors are seeing high numbers of RSV cases statewide, as well […]

A need for speed? Behind Virginia’s drive to boost auto racing

BY: - November 28, 2023

HAMPTON — In the pit area of Langley Speedway, a racecar comes to a stop. Crystal West pulls herself out of the driver side window, tosses off her jacket and begins changing one of her front tires. It’s Championship Night, Langley’s season-closing event that usually happens every October, and West is the lone female driver […]

Community college enrollment rises in Virginia but remains below pre-pandemic levels

BY: - November 28, 2023

More Virginia students have been taking a full course load at community colleges over the past year, but enrollments are still short of pre-pandemic levels, according to data collected by the Virginia Community College System.  Data shows a 3.36% increase in enrollment statewide from fall 2022 to fall 2023, an increase that VCCS officials attribute […]

A new political coalition in Mathews County and more Va. headlines

BY: - November 27, 2023

• After a ruling by the Supreme Court of Virginia this summer, the state Department of Corrections is extending enhanced sentence credits to more inmates convicted of attempted crimes. The ACLU of Virginia had argued the state was improperly denying the enhanced credits to certain incarcerated people.—Washington Post  • The Virginia NAACP is criticizing Senate Democrats’ choice […]

D.C. region, including NoVa, sets ‘ambitious’ goal for rooftop solar

BY: - November 27, 2023

The Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments passed a resolution this November that sets a goal of having solar panels installed on 250,000 rooftops in the Washington, D.C. metro region, an area encompassing the nation’s capital, Northern Virginia and parts of Maryland, by 2030. Members of the energy industry say meeting the target will take some […]

Worries over secrecy grow as state officials shield records from the public

BY: - November 24, 2023

Just weeks after lawmakers in Little Rock passed legislation shielding certain state records from public disclosure, opponents launched an effort to amend the Arkansas Constitution to protect access to government documents. “The coalition that’s coming together on this is about as broadly bipartisan as you could get — from the extreme, extreme right to the […]

All Virginia wildfires except Matt’s Creek contained, say officials

BY: - November 22, 2023

After an unusually active fall fire season that has seen responders struggle to get multiple blazes under control, all of Virginia’s wildfires except for the Matt’s Creek Fire in Bedford County have been contained.  As of Monday night, the state had “no active wildfires” besides Matt’s Creek, said Virginia Department of Forestry spokesman Greg Bilyeu […]