VaNews

Wednesday May 24, 2017


Today's Sponsor:

Debbie Markel

In support of VaNews and their mission of providing truth and facts.

Executive Branch


MCAULIFFE VISITS ABINGDON, TOUTS CRAFT BEER'S ECONOMIC BENEFITS

By LURAH SPELL, Bristol Herald Courier (Metered Paywall - 12 articles a month)

As Gov. Terry McAuliffe sipped on Olde Icehouse craft beer Monday at Wolf Hills Brewing Co. in Abingdon, he touted the benefits of craft breweries to Virginia’s economy. He estimated that the breweries employ 10,000 people across the state. “It’s great for the economy,” said McAuliffe, who made stops Monday and Tuesday in Southwest Virginia .

State Elections


GUBERNATORIAL CANDIDATE COREY STEWART PLEDGES TO OPPOSE ANY NEW TOLLS IN VIRGINIA

By BROCK VERGAKIS, Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)

Republican gubernatorial hopeful Corey Stewart pledged Tuesday to oppose any new toll roads in Virginia and to pay for new projects by slashing $2.2 billion from elsewhere in the state budget. He did not identify what he would cut.



SOAP OPERATIC GOP RACE FOR VA. LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR TO PLAY OUT IN COURTROOM

By LAURA VOZZELLA, Washington Post (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)

Virginia Republicans have a three-way race for lieutenant governor, much of it overshadowed by a two-way soap opera. For months, a pair of state senators competing for the nomination have waged a deeply personal war, one that will find its way to a courtroom just days before the June 13 primary. Sen. Bryce E. Reeves (Spotsylvania) has accused Sen. Jill Holtzman Vogel (Fauquier) of sending an email under a fake name to spread false rumors that he was having an affair.



3 DEMOCRATS WHO NEVER HELD OFFICE VYING TO BE VIRGINIA’S LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR

By FENIT NIRAPPIL , Washington Post (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)

In the shadow of Virginia’s close-fought Democratic gubernatorial primary, three Democrats from the D.C. suburbs who have never held office are competing to be the state’s next lieutenant governor. Attorney and former federal prosecutor Justin Fairfax, who narrowly lost the 2013 Democratic primary for attorney general, leads in endorsements and campaign cash.



DARK MONEY COMES WITH A TWIST IN VIRGINIA'S STATEWIDE RACES

By ALAN SUDERMAN, Associated Press

n Virginia's closely watched statewide political contests, so-called "dark money" comes with a few ironic twists. Two Republican candidates being attacked by mysterious funds have their own ties to nonprofits that have spent millions of untraceable dollars attacking politicians, often with aggressive ads. And the insurgent candidate in the Democratic primary, a longtime advocate of more transparency in political funding, has received $230,000 in anonymous donations from a nonprofit he helped start, making it one of his single biggest donors.



THE WOMEN ARE RUNNING; BIG JUMP IN FEMALE CANDIDATES FOR VIRGINIA HOUSE

By GREGORY S. SCHNEIDER, Washington Post (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)

Kelly Fowler’s daughter was born on the day Barack Obama was inaugurated in 2009, but this year’s birthday was a downer. Fowler and her daughter, Tessa Anne, had been enthusiastic Hillary Clinton supporters, and they couldn’t bear to see President Trump sworn in on her big day. So Fowler took her little girl to the Women’s March in Washington to salvage their spirits. And in the process, she decided something about herself: She was going to run for office.



MARCO RUBIO RAISES MONEY FOR TIM HUGO, WHO ONCE HELMED HIS PRESIDENTIAL BID IN VIRGINIA

By ALEX KOMA, Sun Gazette

Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., is wading into Northern Virginia politics, appearing at a fundraiser for Del. Tim Hugo, R-40th District, as he readies his bid for an eighth term in the General Assembly. Rubio spoke at a May 15 event at the home of retiring Del. Dave Albo, R-42nd District, to promote the longtime incumbent’s candidacy, according to Michelle Baker, a spokeswoman for Hugo. He doubles as the House of Delegates’ majority caucus chairman, a high-ranking leadership post, and represents parts of Fairfax County and western Prince William County.

State Government


LIBERTY UNIVERSITY REACHES DEAL WITH STATE TOBACCO COMMISSION

By JOSH MOODY, News & Advance (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)

Liberty University announced Tuesday it has finalized the purchase of the Center for Advanced Engineering and Research along U.S. 460 in Bedford County after months of negotiations. Those negotiations appeared to have been slowed by concerns over how revenue for the sale would be split and how the tax base of Bedford County would be affected by selling the facility to a nonprofit, according to comments made by Evan Feinman, executive director of the Tobacco Region Revitalization Commission, at a May 3 Executive Committee meeting of the commission.

Congress


GOP, DEMOCRATIC LAWMAKERS VOW TO DEFEAT TRUMP PLAN CUTTING CHESAPEAKE BAY FUNDS

By JENNA PORTNOY, Washington Post (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)

The budget proposal released Tuesday by President Trump doubles down on his promise to eliminate Chesapeake Bay cleanup dollars, increasing the pressure on key Virginia and Maryland lawmakers to rescue the funding. The region has four lawmakers on the powerful House and Senate appropriations committees — Sen. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) and Reps. Andy Harris (R-Md.), C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger (D-Md.) and Scott W. Taylor (R-Va.).



DAVE BRAT LAUDS TRUMP'S BUDGET PROPOSAL; OTHERS LESS ENTHUSED

By JEFF BRANSCOME, Free Lance-Star (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)

Fredericksburg-area Congressman Dave Brat lauded the president’s controversial budget proposal rolled out Tuesday, calling it a “serious attempt to bring federal spending under control.” Brat, a Republican whose 7th District includes parts of Spotsylvania, Culpeper and Orange counties, took a more positive tone than other skeptical GOP congressmen, not to mention Democrats who strongly oppose Republican President Donald Trump’s recommended cuts to Medicaid and other programs for low-income Americans. The spending plan, Brat stated, would secure the border, build a strong military and “reform welfare programs while protecting the most vulnerable.”



BRAT, KAINE WEIGH IN ON TRUMP’S $4.1 TRILLION SPENDING PLAN

By STAFF REPORT, Culpeper Star Exponent (Modified Pay Wall)

Rep. Dave Brat, R-Richmond, praised President Donald Trump’s $4.1 trillion spending plan released Tuesday for its promises to slash spending while U.S. Senator Tim Kaine, D-Virginia, said it would also cut crucial programs supporting local families, children and seniors. “President Trump’s budget is a serious attempt to bring federal spending under control. During the eight years of the Obama Administration, never once did Democrats even offer a budget that balanced in 75 years or reduced spending,” Brat said in a news release.



TRUMP BUDGET DRAWS SHARP CRITICISM AND SOME MEASURED SUPPORT

By AMELIA LUCAS, Daily Press (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)

President Donald Trump's proposed budget for fiscal year 2018 drew sharp criticism from the Democrats in the Hampton Roads congressional delegation and a tepid endorsement from one of the two Republicans. Trump's proposal slashes student loan programs, the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program and other social safety net programs. Social Security and Medicare remain virtually untouched in the proposal. Military spending would increase by $43 billion in fiscal year 2018.

Economy/Business


COMMUNITY POLLS IN VIRGINIA HELP CREATE FUTURE ECONOMIC PLANS

By LURAH SPELL, Bristol Herald Courier (Metered Paywall - 12 articles a month)

Virginia Chamber officials made a stop in Bristol Tuesday to poll local business, government and health leaders about what they think the General Assembly needs to do to help business and economic development growth in the state. Ryan Dunn, Virginia Chamber executive vice president, said the stop at the Holiday Inn was the 25th so far that he’s made this year to gather information from business leaders to compile Blueprint Virginia 2025 — an eight-year guideline for Virginia’s governor and legislators to follow when considering legislation that affects the state’s businesses. There are 10 more stops to go, he said.

Virginia Other


PRESERVATION EFFORT PRECEDES ANY ORGANIZED PUSH TO REMOVE STATUE

By ONOFRIO CASTIGLIA , Winchester Star (Subscription Required)

A petition to save the statue of a Confederate soldier on the Loudoun Street Mall is circulating online, despite there being no organized effort to remove it. The statue, erected in November 1916, is an image of an unnamed Confederate soldier dedicated to those from Winchester and Frederick County who fought for the South in the Civil War between 1861 and 1865, according to an inscription. It is on the property of the Old Civil War Court House Museum, which is owned by Frederick County.



TRANSFER WILL MAKE FORT MONROE WHOLE

By DAVE RESS, Daily Press (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)

The Fort Monroe Authority's gift to the National Park Service of an area lying between park service-owned land around the fortress and the north beach area will create the unified national monument Gov. Terry McAuliffe has pushed for since 2014, his communications director said. The transfer of beach and the grassy open space to the east of Fenwick Road should be completed shortly. But federal officials, even after McAuliffe's lobbying efforts at the White House, did not want to accept a tract of state-owned land to the west of Fenwick

Local


NORFOLK COUNCIL APPROVES $1.25 BILLION SPENDING PLANS FOR 2018, WITH NO TAX INCREASES

By ERIC HARTLEY , Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)

The city will spend more than $1.25 billion next year without raising property taxes under plans approved Tuesday night by City Council. The fiscal 2018 budget gives Norfolk Public Schools $325.3 million, about a 1 percent increase over 2017. That’s $6 million more for schools than originally proposed by the city manager, but less than the $329.2 million the School Board requested. School officials have said they’ll go back to the drawing board to adjust spending based on the council’s decision.



GLOUCESTER TO RECORD STAFF-CITIZEN EXCHANGES

By FRANCES HUBBARD, Daily Press (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)

Come June 1, Gloucester County will start recording conversations between staff and members of the public, both in person and over the phone. County Administrator Brent Fedors said the new audio recording policy is expected to improve customer service and could result in more polite interactions.

TV/Radio


GOVERNOR MCAULIFFE PROMOTES CLEAN ENERGY JOBS IN VIRGINIA'S COALFIELDS

By JOE DASHIELL, WDBJ

One week after Governor Terry McAuliffe signed an executive order designed to reduce carbon emissions from power plants, he kicked off a clean energy jobs tour in southwestern Virginia. "In southwest and southside we've lost tobacco, furniture, coal, you know we need to do things to make sure those jobs that are gone that we're replacing them," McAuliffe said during a visit to Roanoke on Monday.

Online News


FORMER REP. WOLF CONTINUES CRUSADE AGAINST GLOBAL RELIGIOUS PERSECUTION

By BRIAN TROMPETER, Inside NOVA

Renowned for his human-rights advocacy on behalf of oppressed people around the globe, former U.S. Rep. Frank Wolf (R-10th) did not slip quietly into retirement when he left public office in January 2015. Wolf that same month was named Baylor University’s Jerry and Susie Wilson Chair in Religious Freedom, and he continues to speak out for the disempowered as a distinguished senior fellow with the 21st Century Wilberforce Initiative, a religious-freedom group.


Today's Sponsor:

Debbie Markel

In support of VaNews and their mission of providing truth and facts.

Editorials


IT'S A BRAVE NEW WORLD

Daily Press Editorial (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)

It is a simple fact of life in the 21st century: We increasingly live our lives under surveillance. If you are on the interstates anywhere between Williamsburg and the Oceanfront, you are being monitored by cameras positioned to alert VDOT to any breakdowns or accidents. As you pass through busy intersections, you are watched by cameras placed to catch red-light scofflaws. At the store, at the mall, the bank the gas station, the restaurant — security cameras. There is no major outcry over this. People either don't realize it or they accept it.



WAGNER TALKS SOUTHWEST VIRGINIA

Roanoke Times Editorial (Metered Paywall - 20 articles a month)

There are five candidates running for governor — two Democrats and three Republicans. Of those five, only two who have floated specific proposals for Southwest Virginia to address the region’s slow-growth economy. (Or, in the case of the coalfields, an economy that is contracting). Those two candidates are Republican Frank Wagner and Democrat Ralph Northam.



GOOD SENSE FROM GUBERNATORIAL CANDIDATES ED GILLESPIE AND TOM PERRIELLO

Richmond Times-Dispatch Editorial (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)

As the Democratic and Republican primaries approach, the candidates have been fleshing out their policy platforms. And while a certain amount of poll-tested cant is to be expected in any well-run campaign, Virginia’s candidates for governor also have rolled out a series of proposals that deserve thoughtful consideration and even applause. Monday brought two such developments: one from the GOP’s Ed Gillespie and one from Democrat Tom Perriello.

Columnists


SCHAPIRO: DEMOCRATS SURVIVED - AND THRIVED - AFTER EARLIER NOMINATION FIGHT

By JEFF E. SCHAPIRO, Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)

Virginia Democrats are understandably nervous about their gubernatorial primary next month. History shows that a contested primary — this year, it’s Ralph Northam vs. Tom Perriello — produces a doomed nominee, destined to defeat in November. That happened in 1969, 1977 and 2009. But in 1985, choosing their candidates by caucus and convention, Democrats not only survived a grueling and bitter nomination fight for governor — they thrived, sweeping the three top offices with a historic ticket that included the first African-American and first woman elected statewide in Virginia.