By AUSTIN WRIGHT AND MARTIN MATISHAK, Politico
Sen. Mark Warner couldn’t believe what his Republican counterpart on the Senate Intelligence Committee had just done. With no advance notice, Chairman Richard Burr (R-N.C.) declared to reporters that his panel wouldn’t look into possible collusion between Donald Trump’s campaign and Moscow as part of its investigation of Russian interference in the election. So Warner, a Virginia Democrat who is the panel’s ranking member, promptly enlisted every Democrat on the committee to oppose Burr’s move and presumably boycott the investigation if he didn't reverse himself, according to congressional sources.
By GREGORY S. SCHNEIDER , Washington Post
Bedfellows don’t get much stranger than the left-leaning Virginia Poverty Law Center and former state attorney general Ken Cuccinelli (R), the lightning-rod conservative who ran for governor and defied Donald Trump at the Republican National Convention. But Cuccinelli has filed a legal brief on behalf of the VPLC in fighting one of the most powerful corporations in the state: Dominion Power.
Virginian-Pilot Editorial (Metered Paywall - 15 articles a month)
Recent figures show that abortions in the U.S. have fallen to the lowest level since the Supreme Court legalized the procedure in its landmark Roe v. Wade case. That’s good. Bill Clinton was right when he said, in 1992, that abortion should be “safe, legal — and rare.” The Alan Guttmacher Institute, which studies abortion, attributes the decline to two factors: wider availability of better contraception, and more legal restrictions on abortion in the states. There’s a third, intriguing potential explanation called the Roe Effect.
By PETER VIETH, Virginia Lawyers Weekly (Paywall for some articles)
The 2017 General Assembly is expected to be a battleground for medical providers divided over the state’s tight regulation of medical start-ups. Some physicians say they should have the right to open a surgery center or other facility without having state regulators weigh the need.
By JORDAN PASCALE AND STACY PARKER , Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 15 articles a month)
The three largest cities in Hampton Roads are opposing a bill in the legislature that their leaders say would limit municipal control of their broadband infrastructure and maybe hamper their ability to bring faster internet speeds and lower prices to residents. Virginia Beach and Chesapeake passed a resolution this week coming out against HB2108, known as the Virginia Broadband Deployment Act. Norfolk is scheduled to vote on a resolution rebuking it Tuesday. The bill, introduced by Del. Kathy Byron, R-Campbell, has met significant criticism – which she argues is misguided.
Roanoke Times (Metered Paywall - 20 articles a month)
Legislation introduced this week would establish an authority to oversee online education in the state. The bill, introduced by Dels. Kirk Cox, R-Colonial Heights, and Ben Cline, R-Rockbridge, would create the Online Virginia Network Authority as an educational institution. The authority would coordinate and administer the delivery of all online courses and degree and credential programs offered by public colleges and universities or by a consortium of state schools.
A bill advancing in the Virginia General Assembly would require restaurants with a liquor license to serve food at all times alcohol is served. The bill’s sponsor, Sen. Bill DeSteph, R-Virginia Beach, said Friday the measure is intended to clarify existing rules. If a restaurant is operating properly, the bill wouldn’t cost them money, he said.
By TRAVIS FAIN AND DAVE RESS, Daily Press (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)
After the failure to build U.S. 460 and the lopsided Midtown/Downtown tunnel deal, much of Hampton Roads is wary of public-private road deals. But nationally they may be on the cusp of heyday. President Donald Trump's $1 trillion infrastructure proposal isn't built on $1 trillion in federal spending. Much of it relies on tax credits and other incentives to bring private money to the table.
By PATRICK WILSON , Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 20 articles a month)
Rep. Robert C. “Bobby” Scott of Newport News is considered liberal. Radio show host John Fredericks was pulling for and predicting a Donald Trump presidency long before most. Conservatives attack Scott over his political positions. Someone once chastised Fredericks — who served as co-chairman, then chairman of Trump’s Virginia campaign — in a store because he wore a red “Make America Great Again” hat. But politics doesn’t always have to be so mean.
By MARY BETH GAHAN, ALISSA SKELTON AND JORDAN PASCALE , Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 15 articles a month)
Now that the majority of voters have said they don’t want light rail, the city is trying to figure out what to do with a nearly 11-mile strip of railroad line that was bought for that purpose. Virginia Beach was told to find a way to use the corridor for high-capacity transit or pay back $20 million the state pitched in to help buy the land.