Tuesday September 01, 2015
Compiled by Bernadette Kinlaw
By REX SPRINGSTON, Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 20 articles a month)
Gov. Terry McAuliffe’s climate change commission on Monday endorsed five top recommendations for addressing the issue, ranging from creating a special bank to finance alternative energy projects to forming a clearinghouse of climate information.
Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 20 articles a month)
The day before today’s court-imposed deadline to redraw Virginia’s 3rd Congressional District, there were no signs of reconciliation between Democrats and Republicans in the legislature. That will almost certainly put the map in the hands of a federal court.
By ROBERT BARNES AND MATT ZAPOTOSKY, Washington Post
Former Virginia governor Robert F. McDonnell will avoid prison while the U.S. Supreme Court considers whether to review his conviction on corruption charges, the justices decided Monday. The one-paragraph order was a dramatic — perhaps unprecedented — reprieve for the Republican former governor.
By FRANK GREEN , Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 20 articles a month)
In a surprise to some observers, the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday allowed former Gov. Bob McDonnell to remain free while the justices decide whether to take up his appeal. In a one-paragraph order, the high court told the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to hold off on making its July 10 ruling upholding McDonnell’s 11 corruption convictions final, permitting McDonnell to remain on bond.
By LARRY O'DELL, Associated Press
Former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell will not have to go to prison while the U.S. Supreme Court considers whether to review his public corruption convictions, the justices ruled Monday. The brief order overturned a lower court’s decision that would have required McDonnell to report to prison soon to begin serving his two-year sentence. McDonnell has until early November to file a petition asking the Supreme Court to consider his case.
By ALEX ROHR, News & Advance
Regardless of what they call the three events during which two Virginia House District 24 candidates meet on stage before the Nov. 3 election, they already are debating. While Del. Ben Cline, R-Rockbridge County, announced Monday the three independently hosted events as “debates,” his Democratic challenger Ellen Arthur argues they are only “forums.”
By TREVOR BARATKO, Loudoun Times
As expected, national political groups are starting to pour cash into some key 2015 General Assembly races in Loudoun. On Friday, the Republican State Leadership Committee's Future Majority Project and the Right Women, Right Now organizations announced a $100,000 pledge before Labor Day to several regional races, including the Virginia House 86th and 87th districts.
By DAVID MCGEE, Bristol Herald Courier
Former Virginia Attorney General Jerry Kilgore has joined the presidential campaign of Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker.
By LAURA VOZZELLA AND JENNA PORTNOY, Washington Post
Virginia’s highest court will cram four days of oral arguments into three, allowing it to wrap up its September session before time runs out on Gov. Terry McAuliffe’s embattled Supreme Court pick. Republicans regarded the move as a win in their pitched battle to keep Justice Jane Marum Roush off the bench, and confirmation that McAuliffe (D) lacks the power to keep her there much longer. But McAuliffe said he still plans to reappoint Roush when her temporary appointment expires in about two weeks.
By TRAVIS FAIN, Daily Press (Paywall for certain articles)
The state of Virginia seems to have undercut a basic tenet of its Freedom of Information Act with a personnel policy that forbids state officials from releasing all but the most basic employee information. FOIA itself says that release is up to the government, and the employee. Neither has to release personnel records to the public, but if either chooses to, they will be released.
By KATHERINE CALOS, Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 20 articles a month)
The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts created a $145 million economic juggernaut when it reopened in 2010 after an extensive expansion project. Between fiscal year 2008, the last full year before the museum closed for the final stages of construction, and fiscal year 2014, five years after it reopened, VMFA’s total economic impact around the state has more than doubled
By JOEY MATTHEWS, Richmond Free Press
jDevon Simmons said he gets deep satisfaction from helping inmates leaving local jails gain a new lease on life.... The 30-year-old Buffalo, N.Y., native has that opportunity in his position as the first state re-entry coordinator in the office of Virginia Attorney General Mark R. Herring.
By SALLY VOTH, Winchester Star (Subscription Required)
Onetime history major Kevin Callanan will bring his enthusiasm for the past to the board of trustees of the Frontier Culture Museum. Callanan, the executive director of the Winchester Medical Center Foundation, has been with Valley Health for 10 years.
By JOHANNA SOMERS, Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)
Portsmouth forced out its general services director over his purchase of nearly $900,000 worth of mulching equipment, and city staff members still struggle to figure out what to do with it.
By TRACI MOYER, News Leader (Metered Pay Wall)
After more than a year of discussions and meetings about fresh eggs and chicken waste, city leaders have finally legalized hens within city limits. But the vote, made during a packed council meeting, was close.
Richmond Times-Dispatch Editorial (Metered Paywall - 20 articles a month)
Four months ago, police officers arrested Jamycheal Mitchell for stealing a Snickers, a 2-liter bottle of Mountain Dew and a snack cake from a 7-Eleven. They took him to the Hampton Roads Regional Jail, where he remained until Aug. 19 — when he was found dead in his cell.
By BOB STUART, News Virginian Editorial
The interim executive director of the Virginia State Conference of the NAACP said Monday the organization does not support having schools named after Confederate generals. But Executive Director Jack Gravely said the organization does not have an official position on Confederate monuments or highways named after Confederate generals.
Virginian-Pilot Editorial (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)
The Virginia Beach City Council is set tonight to vote — again — on a resolution opposing uranium mining in Virginia. The issue is still, thankfully and for all practical purposes, dead. Mining uranium is still illegal in the commonwealth.
Free Lance-Star Editorial
A utility as large as Dominion Power that enjoys a monopoly in the marketplace and remarkable clout in the state legislature shouldn’t be surprised when even a minor financial aspect of its operations raises public eyebrows.
Daily Progress Editorial
The Amtrak train now serving Charlottesville daily is one of the most successful trains in the country. Over six years of high ridership, it has proven that people want an alternative to driving or flying.
By POLITIFACT, Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 20 articles a month)
Again and again, U.S. Rep. Dave Brat places himself in the vanguard of congressmen opposed to the Iran nuclear deal. "I was one of the few, very few, who voted `no’ on the Iran deal," Brat, R-7th, said during an Aug. 10 breakfast with Henrico County business leaders.
By ROGER CHESLEY, Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)
Something is wrong when a mentally ill man dies in jail - after being charged with stealing the princely sum of $5 worth of junk food - while awaiting space in a state treatment center. The Aug. 19 death of 24-year-old Jamycheal Mitchell at the Hampton Roads Regional Jail, reported by The Pilot and The Guardian news organization, raises troubling questions for the criminal justice and mental health systems in Virginia.
The Virginia Public Access Project
In 1992, the General Assembly sought to comply with U.S. Department of Justice guidelines aimed at giving African-Americans a better opportunity to elect a congressman of their choice. That year, Bobby Scott became Virginia’s first black congressman since Reconstruction. But the 25-year effort to create and maintain a minority-majority district twice has run afoul of federal judges, who ruled in 1998 and 2014 that Virginia unconstitutionally made race the predominant factor in drawing the lines.