In support of VPAP which shines light on Prince William County politics and beyond.
The Virginia Public Access Project
VPAP presents a traditional red/blue map showing results from last week's Senate election, but with each locality resized based on its number of registered voters. The presentation illustrates how a relatively small number of densely populated cities and counties play a major role in the Virginia electoral map.
The Virginia Public Access Project
Some local officials were prepared last Tuesday for heavy midterm turnout that could rival a presidential election. VPAP's latest map shows just how close each locality came to matching turnout in November 2016. The city that came the closest -- 97% of 2016 turnout -- is home to a major state university.
By CHRIS MARKHAM, NBC 29
New school policies could be coming to Virginia in efforts to prevent discrimination in the classroom. State lawmakers are working with students and activist organizations across the state to come up with solutions. The group on Saturday for a forum to stop school push-out when it comes to students of color, specifically girls, in Virginia.
By LIZ ANDERSON, WTOP
Black girls and other girls of color are more likely to be suspended from school than their white peers in Virginia, according to the National Women’s Law Center. It’s a nationwide trend, and there’s a move in the commonwealth to tackle those disparities in discipline.
By PETER VIETH, Virginia Lawyers Weekly (Paywall for some articles)
Lawyers and legislators in Fairfax County have stepped up pressure on Del. Tim Hugo to drop his tacit opposition to election of lawyers endorsed for Fairfax County judgeships. Hugo, R-Fairfax, is dismissive of the 30-year procedure for vetting Fairfax County judicial candidates, with screening by the Fairfax Bar Association and interviews with the county’s legislative delegation.
By MALLORY NOE-PAYNE, WVTF
Activists are pushing for Virginia’s lawmakers to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment this year, potentially changing the United States Constitution. To help raise awareness, a group is driving around the state. The 10-day bus tour to support the Equal Rights Amendment kicked off in Williamsburg Friday. The bus will be in Charlottesville, Lexington and Roanoke later this week.
By PETER VIETH, Virginia Lawyers Weekly (Paywall for some articles)
The Boyd-Graves Conference says it’s time to end the confusion over the different meanings ascribed to the word “shall” in Virginia statutes and rules. The solution the panel offers is to eliminate that word altogether in new law and use a precise intended term, such as “must” or “may.”
By AMY FRIEDENBERGER, Roanoke Times (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)
The special election to fill the seat of Del. Ben Cline, who this week was elected to Congress, will take place Dec. 18. House of Delegates Speaker Kirk Cox, R-Colonial Heights, announced the date for the 24th House District election Friday morning. The district represents the cities of Buena Vista and Lexington as well as Bath and Rockbridge counties and parts of Amherst and Augusta counties. Five Republicans have announced they are seeking the nomination
By SHANNON KEITH, News & Advance (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)
Amherst County Supervisor Jimmy Ayers on Friday announced his candidacy for the Virginia 24th District House of Delegates seat. The seat is being vacated by Del. Ben Cline
By GRAHAM MOOMAW AND PATRICK WILSON, Richmond Times-Dispatch (Access to this article limited to subscribers)
Democrats have not lost a statewide contest in Virginia in a decade and more jeopardy could loom for the GOP next year following Tuesday's midterm elections, which went about as well for Democrats as they could have hoped. The lineup at the Democrats' party in Falls Church Tuesday night illustrated the party's dominant political standing in the commonwealth. The jubilant crowd included three former governors, two of whom now serve in the U.S. Senate, and a third who might run for president by pointing to what’s happening in Virginia.
By NED OLIVER, Virginia Mercury
Virginia Democrats’ continued post-Trump electoral gains suggest Republicans face an uphill battle in next year’s General Assembly races as they campaign to maintain their razor-thin majorities in the state House and Senate.
By ONOFRIO CASTIGLIA, Winchester Star (Metered Paywall - 5 articles a month)
Following a solid victory in Tuesday’s midterm election, congresswoman-elect Jennifer Wexton says she is focused on pursuing bipartisan policies and providing a check on presidential power. “I don’t believe in opposition for opposition’s sake,” Wexton said. But the country voted for an “independent and strong branch of the federal government” when voting to return the House of Representatives to Democratic control.
By NATALIE DELGADILLO, WAMU
Jennifer Wexton, the newly-elected House representative of Virginia’s 10th district, publicly announced her support for D.C. statehood on WAMU’s The Kojo Nnamdi Show Politics Hour on Friday.
By EMILY KOPP, Roll Call
A special prosecutor will press on with his investigation into allegations of fraud by Virginia Rep. Scott Taylor’s re-election campaign, but for now, he’s gratified. “There’s no hurry,” attorney Don Caldwell told the Virginian-Pilot. “It looks to me like there already was some poetic justice served down there in Virginia Beach to Mr. Taylor.”
By DAVID ALAN, WVEC
When the 116th United States Congress convenes in January, its members may find an increasingly toxic mood in the nation's capital. Democratic control of the House of Representatives could mean a flurry of indictments and investigations, and stifle any spirit of bipartisanship. On Thursday, I sat down with Second District Congresswoman-elect Elaine Luria
By PATRICK WILSON, Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 5 articles a month)
A day after she won election to a seat in Congress, Abigail Spanberger and her father were picking up Chinese food for dinner at a restaurant near her Henrico County home. “Are you Abigail Spanberger?” a woman asked. Other people in the restaurant, realizing their congresswoman-elect was there, began congratulating her. A father took her picture with his son. “That was the real moment of reality that we’ve definitely entered a different place,” said Spanberger
By OLIVIA UGINO, NBC 12
Chances are you’ve seen the viral pictures of Abigail Spanberger the night she won a seat to Congress. Her 4-year-old daughter, Catherine, stole the show during her victory speech. “Well first, I could hear my husband in the background saying ‘Catherine, Catherine,’ trying to get her back. There’s always that moment where you put them on your hip and you continue stirring the pasta, or trying to type out your work email, you know any of those things.
By TYLER HAMMEL, Daily Progress (Metered Paywall - 5 articles a month)
Analysts and candidates don’t quite agree on the effect of gerrymandering following the election for Virginia’s 5th Congressional District seat. The largest congressional district geographically in the state, the 5th District has been considered a Republican stronghold since the lines were redrawn in 2011, following the 2010 Census. Democrat Leslie Cockburn hoped to change that, but underperformed in more rural localities.
By BRIAN FUNG, Washington Post (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)
Nearly 140 West Virginians living abroad in 29 countries have cast their election ballots in an unprecedented pilot project that involves voting remotely by mobile device, according to state officials. The statewide pilot, which covers 24 of West Virginia’s 55 counties, uses a mixture of smartphones, facial recognition and the same technology that underpins bitcoin — the blockchain
A federal appeals court will take another look at a Virginia law that lets police arrest people designated as "habitual drunkards" if they are caught with alcohol. In August, a three-judge panel of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a lower court ruling that dismissed a lawsuit challenging the law. On Thursday, the full court agreed to reconsider the case in January.
By JACK JACOBS, Virginia Gazette (Metered Paywall - 5 Articles per Month)
Though Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation executive director Philip Emerson hasn’t announced a firm retirement date, the foundation’s board of trustees has appointed a search committee to find his successor. The appointment of the committee is the first step in the process of finding a successor for Emerson, who’s served as executive director of the agency for 28 years, according to a foundation news release.
By MARIE ALBIGES, Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)
Richmond Commonwealth’s Attorney Mike Herring remembers the fatal shooting of man in the Gilpin Court housing project last summer because of one characteristic: A transcript of the defendant’s interview with police showed the defendant laughing repeatedly while discussing the crime. But when he watched the police interview video, Herring found the laugh was actually more of a low chuckle
By GREGORY S. SCHNEIDER, Washington Post (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)
Virginia air pollution regulators on Friday unexpectedly delayed voting on a permit for a natural gas pumping facility in the historical African American community of Union Hill, after raising questions about how environmental justice issues were considered in the state’s review of the project.
By MICHAEL MARTZ, Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 5 articles a month)
Virginia’s Air Pollution Control Board is waiting a month to act on a proposed permit for a natural gas compressor station to serve the Atlantic Coast Pipeline in Buckingham County because of unresolved concerns about whether it would have a “disproportionate impact” on the majority-black community of Union Hill.
By ROBERT MCCARTNEY, Washington Post (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)
Democrats’ takeover of the U.S. House in Tuesday’s election instantly strengthened the Washington region’s deep blue congressional delegation, a change that may advance local goals such as Metro funding, statehood for the District and protecting federal workers and the Chesapeake Bay.
By AARON GREGG, Washington Post (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)
The companies that make jets, bombs and aircraft carriers for the U.S. military are telling investors that the defense business will still be booming under a Democrat-controlled House of Representatives, even as a split Congress threatens a return to partisan gridlock. The reason, one defense executive said, is that the Democratic takeover of the House could weaken Republican deficit hawks in Congress at a time when their influence is already diminished.
By TERRENCE MCCOY, Washington Post (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)
What happens during an eviction couldn’t seem more straightforward: A tenant doesn’t have the money to make rent, so the landlord gives him or her the boot. New research, however, is complicating that picture of eviction in America. It’s not only a matter of poverty. It’s also a matter of race. That’s the striking conclusion of researchers at Virginia Commonwealth University,
By STAFF REPORT, Bristol Herald Courier (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)
Contura Energy announced Friday the successful closing of its previously announced business combination with ANR Inc. and Alpha Natural Resources Holdings Inc. In conjunction with the transaction closing, Contura common shares were listed today on the New York Stock Exchange and began trading immediately under the symbol CTRA, according to a written statement.
By KIMBERLY PIERCEALL, Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)
Days after reporting a losing third quarter and as it entertains bids to buy its newspapers, Tribune Publishing is planning to offer buyouts to full-time non-unionized workers who have been with the company for at least 10 years. The company, which owns The Virginian-Pilot and the Daily Press, is offering an “enhanced” package of incentives
By ANA LEY, Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)
Tolls at the Midtown and Downtown tunnels are about to go up again. Beginning Jan. 1, rates for passenger vehicles will climb by 11 cents during peak hours and 6 cents the rest of the time for drivers with an E-ZPass transponder. The new rates will be $2.20 and $1.79, respectively. Commuters who cross the tunnels twice per day during peak hours five times per week with an E-ZPass would spend about $1,144 each year
By JACOB DEMMITT, Roanoke Times (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)
Virginia colleges are beginning to embrace the idea of blockchain diplomas, as Virginia Beach-based ECPI University has joined a group of early adopters that distribute student degrees through the same kind of decentralized computer networks that power Bitcoin. Virginia Tech, meanwhile, is in the early stages of considering its own launch, according to Tech spokesman Mark Owczarski.
By RUTH SERVEN SMITH, Daily Progress (Metered Paywall - 5 articles a month)
A University of Michigan at Flint professor has complained about eight University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business scholarships, saying they discriminate against men. Mark Perry, a professor of economics, sent a complaint to UVa’s Title IX office last week about the single-gender, women-only scholarships at Darden
By HALLE PARKER, Danville Register & Bee
While the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision won’t come out for months, the argument hearing instilled a feeling of optimism in those who support Virginia’s moratorium on uranium mining.
By RACHEL WEINER, Washington Post (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)
Former prosecutor and Justice Department staffer G. Zachary Terwilliger was sworn in as U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia on Friday, bringing together DOJ leaders for a rare moment of unity in a chaotic week. ... Terwilliger was appointed to the position in May and confirmed by the Senate in August, but Friday marked his formal investiture.
By LUANNE RIFE, Roanoke Times (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)
Doctors are writing fewer prescriptions for powerful painkillers than they did a year ago, and fewer Virginians are dying and overdosing from opioids, according to reports filed by the state Department of Health. If the fatal overdose trend holds through the final quarter, 2018 could mark a turning point in Virginia’s opioid epidemic.
By TAMARA DIETRICH, Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)
Hampton Roads is getting more than $3.7 million in federal grants for projects to strengthen coastlines against the impacts of storms and sea level rise. The grants to the James River Association, the city of Norfolk and the Virginia Institute of Marine Science will go to build living shorelines in Hampton and Norfolk and bolster the resiliency of Virginia’s barrier islands.
By MAX SMITH, WTOP
Alexandria is set to allow dockless bike-share and scooters under a program that would mirror neighboring Arlington County’s pilot....Alexandria city staff believe the close-knit nature of Arlington and Alexandria neighborhoods makes similar rules the best bet.
By ANN E. MARIMOW, Washington Post (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)
The day before she was sworn in to public office (in Loudoun County), Phyllis J. Randall created a new Facebook page and encouraged citizens to share criticism and compliments. A month later, Randall deleted what she deemed a “slanderous” accusation delivered anonymously and aimed at someone other than her. She blocked the commenter from her page. The ban was brief, no more than 12 hours. But the fallout sparked a novel federal case that has implications for how President Trump manages his active Twitter account
By ANTONIO OLIVO, Washington Post (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)
Democrats are having increasing success in once-conservative Prince William County — most recently on Tuesday, when voters went heavily for U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine over Republican Corey A. Stewart, chair of the Board of County Supervisors, as part of a local Democratic sweep. Now a Democrat has thrown his hat in the ring for a county sheriff’s race that is 12 months away,
By MIKE PLATANIA, Richmond BizSense
After eight months of delays, City Council appeared finally set to decide the future of the Intermediate Terminal building at its meeting this week. But a last-minute request by Stone Brewing Co. has thrown yet another wrench in the process.
By JEFF BRANSCOME, Free Lance-Star (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)
Stafford County has received its third AAA bond rating since 2015. The latest top credit rating came last week from Moody’s Investors Service, which cited Stafford’s healthy financial position and emphasis on “strategic planning for the future,” according to a county press release. Stafford previously received a bond rating of Aa1 from Moody’s
In support of VPAP which shines light on Prince William County politics and beyond.
Daily Progress Editorial (Metered Paywall - 5 articles a month)
If authorities can get into your house for a search, why not into your cellphone, too? Privacy is at stake in both instances, but citizen privacy and the integrity of the law enforcement system are supposed to be protected by the requirement to obtain a search warrant — most of the time. Police are supposed to prove to a judge that a search is necessary — although there are exceptions — and to conduct searches only after a warrant has been obtained. Charlottesville police have just gotten permission to buy a system that will allow them to break through personal security passwords and access information in iPhones and Apple operating systems.
Daily News Record Editorial (Subscription Required)
West Virginia is receiving international attention for the precise opposite of the voter suppression we hear alleged during every election season. Call it unleashing the vote. The state’s chief election officer, Secretary of State Mac Warner, is recognized for technological leadership, including that involved in election security. He is employing it to make it easier to cast ballots, too. For the general election held Tuesday, nearly 140 West Virginians living abroad in 29 countries were able to vote using remote electronic devices such as smartphones.
Roanoke Times Editorial (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)
Today we take a broom and sweep up the loose ends of last week’s election: Turnout was good, not great Voter turnout was high, but not at record levels and certainly not at presidential levels. In Virginia, 59 percent of registered voters went to the polls. That was the highest turnout in mid-term elections since 1994, when 69 percent voted in the three-way Senate race between Charles Robb, Oliver North and Marshall Coleman.
Virginian-Pilot Editorial (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)
Virginia should make it easier to restore the voting rights of convicted felons who have served their time in prison. The commonwealth has recently moderated its unreasonable, permanent denial of voting rights for felons. But more needs to be done so that citizens who have paid their debt to society can then participate fully in that society.
By WAYNE JONES AND DAWN OLESKY, Published in the Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)
You see the chasing arrows on the bottom of that Styrofoam cup and the tiny number that sits inside the little triangle. It appears to be recyclable, so you toss it in your recycling cart with hopes that it will soon be transformed into a useful, eco-friendly product. Without realizing it, you have just contaminated the recycling stream — and your city or county recycling provider would like for you to brush up on what is acceptable, and what is not, when it comes to recycling.
Wayne Jones, with the City of Suffolk, and Dawn Oleksy, with James City County, lead the Recycling & Beautification Committee of askHRgreen.org.
By IRENE LEECH, Published in the Roanoke Times (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)
When you make a big investment in your home — say a new roof or a heating and cooling system — it’s usually because you have carefully considered your options and decided that there’s a real need and that the benefits outweigh the costs. And as smart consumers, when we do invest in our home’s infrastructure, we ‘right size’ it for our house, our budget, and our needs. Common sense tells us that the same should be true of investments in infrastructure intended to serve the public interest—including natural gas pipelines.
Leech is president of Virginia Citizens Consumer Council and associate professor of Consumer Studies at Virginia Tech.
By HARRY LESTER, Published in the Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)
With his recent executive order, Gov. Ralph Northam wisely directed the commonwealth to prepare for the inevitable impacts of climate change. He also told us to learn from places such as New Orleans and the Netherlands. We can’t just build bigger levees, dikes or other one-dimensional solutions. To protect lives and property in Virginia, and to save taxpayer money, we must, as Northam said in his executive order: “Employ natural and nature-based solutions to the maximum extent possible.”
Harry Lester is chairman of the Board of Trustees for the Chesapeake Bay Foundation
By SAM RASOUL, Published in the Roanoke Times (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)
Nearly every day a mass shooting or high profile sexual harassment story breaks the news. Gun violence is nothing new for Americans, and only recently has our society started to acknowledge how prevalent domestic violence and sexual harassment are,
Rasoul represents most of Roanoke and part of Roanoke County in the House of Delegates. He is a Democrat.
By JULIE COONS, Published in the Washington Post (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)
The Washington area has some of the worst traffic in the nation. Washingtonians spend an average of 2.5 days a year looking at red tail lights. That congestion creates more problems – more pollution, more wasted time, more accidents, more frustration. Every daily commuter knows we cannot leave on the table any ideas for easing congestion.
Julie Coons is president and chief executive of the Northern Virginia Chamber of Commerce.
By STEPHEN J. FARNSWORTH & STEPHEN HANNA, Published in the Free Lance-Star (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)
There's an old saying that there is not much one can learn from the second kick of a mule. In Virginia’s 2018 Senate race, the commonwealth’s voters provided the Republican Party of Virginia with its ninth mule kick in a row.
Stephen J. Farnsworth is professor of political science at the University of Mary Washington. Stephen Hanna is professor of geography at UMW.
By ROBIN STOMBLER, Published in the Washington Post (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)
Arlington is a national leader in many areas, from digital prowess to millennial meccas, but a recent project to revitalize a historically African American community dulls the shine. A flawed public-engagement process illuminates what governments and civic volunteers should avoid.
Robin Stombler is vice chair of the Four Mile Run Valley Initiative Working Group.