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VaNews

Wednesday November 20, 2019

FROM VPAP


AUDIO, PHOTOS FROM 'AFTER VIRGINIA VOTES - HAMPTON ROADS'

The Virginia Public Access Project

How will the General Assembly elections impact Hampton Roads? A panel of considered that question yesterday at a luncheon in Norfolk attended by 160 business and community leaders.

EXECUTIVE BRANCH


ATTORNEY GENERAL MARK HERRING TO HOST ‘CANNABIS SUMMIT’ AHEAD OF 2020 SESSION

By GRAHAM MOOMAW, Virginia Mercury

Attorney General Mark Herring has invited state lawmakers to a “Cannabis Summit” next month that will feature policymakers from states that have legalized or decriminalized marijuana and academics who study cannabis-related issues.

GENERAL ASSEMBLY


'OUR JOB IS TO PROTECT THE POCKETBOOK' - OUTGOING VIRGINIA HOUSE BUDGET CHAIRMAN CAUTIONS DELEGATES

By MICHAEL MARTZ, Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 5 articles a month)

House Appropriations Chairman Chris Jones, R-Suffolk, opened his final budget retreat Tuesday with a warning to members of a committee that will convene in January with nine new faces, a steep learning curve and a towering responsibility.


OUTGOING DEL. CHRIS JONES URGES APPROPRIATIONS COMMITTEE COOPERATION

By DAVE RESS, Daily Press (Metered Paywall - 5 articles a month)

Retirements and election losses have cost the House of Delegates’ Appropriations Committee a century and a half of budget-writing experience, outgoing chairman Chris Jones, R-Suffolk, told the panel’s annual retreat Tuesday. And, as he himself prepares to leave office after losing his House seat to Democrat Clinton Jenkins, Jones said “there’s going to need to be a lot of holding up your colleagues.”


SENATOR EXPECTS MAJOR CHANGES IN RICHMOND IN 2020

By STAFF REPORT, Inside NOVA

As she prepares to take the helm of one of the state Senate’s most powerful committees, Sen. Janet Howell says Democratic rule in Richmond will differ from that of Republicans. “We’re going to see more emphasis on early-childhood education and family leave. Education at every level will be a high priority. I think you’ll see more compassion for the working poor and efforts to help their situation,” Howell (D-32nd) told the Sun Gazette in a recent interview.

STATE GOVERNMENT


HOW RICHMOND’S GUARDIANSHIP PROCESS LEAVES VULNERABLE PEOPLE UNPROTECTED

By BRIDGET BALCH, Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 5 articles a month)

Guardianship, the legal process of taking away an adult’s rights to make life decisions, is intended to protect vulnerable people from neglect and abuse. In Richmond, VCU Health System and other health care providers have used the process to remove poor patients from hospital beds, sometimes against the wishes of family members, with the help of a local law firm.


VIRGINIA’S STATE PSYCHIATRIC HOSPITALS SAY THEY’RE IN “CRISIS,” WITH BEDS FILLED AND NOT ENOUGH MONEY

By DAVE RESS, Daily Press (Metered Paywall - 5 articles a month)

The day after the state’s top health official clashed, again, with legislators over plans to add beds at a western Virginia state mental hospital to ease overcrowding, the head of Eastern State Hospital thought she’d caught a break. A couple of patients had done well enough to be discharged, freeing up a couple of beds. But a couple more had slipped into a mental health crisis, with nowhere else to go, and the mental health safety net for Tidewater Virginia was once again full to capacity — 302 people for 302 beds.

ECONOMY/BUSINESS


REPORT: VIRGINIA’S APPALACHIAN COUNTIES LAGGED BEHIND STATE IN POST-RECESSION JOB GROWTH

By TIM DODSON, Bristol Herald Courier (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)

Although Virginia experienced statewide employment growth in the years after the Great Recession, the state’s portion of the federally designated Appalachian Region lagged behind the rest of the state, and there was a slight decline in employment between 2012 and 2017, according to recently released research.

VIRGINIA OTHER


FIFTEEN VA. SUPERFUND SITES THREATENED BY CLIMATE CHANGE, WATCHDOG AGENCY SAYS

By ROBIN BRAVENDER, Virginia Mercury

Fifteen of the most contaminated sites in Virginia are vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, according to a new report from a government watchdog agency. The Government Accountability Office, an independent agency that works for the U.S. Congress, assessed how impacts of climate change — including flooding, storm surge, wildfires and sea level rise — might affect some of the most dangerous hazardous waste sites around the country.

LOCAL


HOMELESS FACILITY IN ALEXANDRIA GETS $300,000 BOOST FROM AMAZON

By ANTONIO OLIVO, Washington Post (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)

A nonprofit that is building a $2 million facility for the homeless in Old Town Alexandria says it has reached its fundraising goal after receiving $300,000 from Amazon, Inc., which is opening a headquarters campus in nearby Crystal City. The donation from Amazon is the latest example of how the retail giant is trying to be a good corporate citizen in Northern Virginia.


PRINCE WILLIAM SUPERVISORS VOTE 5-3 TO NAME PARK AFTER CONTROVERSIAL FORMER COUNTY CLERK

By EMILY SIDES, Prince William Times

The Prince William Board of County Supervisors voted 5-3 on Tuesday to name a proposed Woodbridge park after Michele McQuigg, a former Occoquan District Supervisor and county clerk who was on the front lines in her opposition to same-sex marriage while in office in 2014.


FORMER NORFOLK SHERIFF BOB MCCABE PLEADS NOT GUILTY TO CORRUPTION CHARGES, TRIAL SCHEDULED FOR MAY

By JANE HARPER, Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)

Former Norfolk Sheriff Bob McCabe appeared before a federal magistrate judge on Tuesday and pleaded not guilty to all 11 corruption charges that a grand jury issued against him last month.


SURF PARK DEVELOPMENT APPROVED FOR FORMER DOME SITE IN VIRGINIA BEACH

By STACY PARKER, Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)

For 25 years, Virginia Beach has been searching for the right developer to transform the old Dome site at the Oceanfront into a vibrant entertainment hub. The city finally found it.


NEW STUDY DETAILS IMPACT OF CASINO IN DANVILLE WITH JOBS, REVENUES, TAX BENEFITS

By JOHN R. CRANE, Danville Register & Bee

A destination resort casino could bring in about $363.5 million in gaming revenues in 2022 if located at a highway site in the area, according to the results of a study presented to Danville City Council during a work session Tuesday evening.


WHEATON WELCOMED BACK TO AMHERST TOWN COUNCIL

By JUSTIN FAULCONER, News & Advance (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)

With a “welcome back” greeting at the start of Amherst Town Council’s Nov. 13 meeting from Mayor Dwayne Tuggle, Councilwoman Janice Wheaton retook her seat with a friendly nod of thanks. Four months earlier, she was expelled from her position on a 4-1 vote following a closed session. On Nov. 5 she was elected again to the post with 60% of the vote and was sworn into office prior to last week’s meeting.


AMHERST COUNTY RESIDENTS COME OUT IN DROVES TO LOBBY FOR SECOND AMENDMENT SANCTUARY STATUS

By JUSTIN FAULCONER, News & Advance (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)

A few hundred people swarmed Amherst County’s government headquarters Tuesday to blitz county officials with their passionate support of a measure to make the county a “Second Amendment Sanctuary” county, a hot topic among some Virginia counties following the Nov. 5 election.


FRANKLIN COUNTY CROWD URGES SUPERVISORS TO SUPPORT GUN RIGHTS

By MIKE ALLEN, Roanoke Times (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)

More than 350 people wearing “Guns Save Lives” badges came to Tuesday’s Franklin County Board of Supervisors meeting to demand the county declare itself a “Second Amendment sanctuary.” Supervisors reassured the packed meeting room that they were all on the same side.


WITH CHEERS FROM CROWD, PITTSYLVANIA COUNTY SUPERVISORS OFFICIALLY BACK 'SECOND AMENDMENT SANCTUARY' DESIGNATION

By CALEB AYERS, Danville Register & Bee

Joshua Jennings, who runs a gun store in Cascade, is nervous about the prospect of additional gun regulation that has been proposed by Gov. Ralph Northam amid Democrats seizing control of the General Assembly next year. “Gov. Northam has insisted on attacking our way of life here in Pittsylvania County,” Jennings, the owner of Guns, Gear, and Ammo, said during the Pittsylvania County Board of Supervisors meeting Tuesday night.


LITTLE FANFARE ACCOMPANIES PUBLIC PRESENTATION ON REVERSION

By BILL WYATT, Martinsville Bulletin

The long-awaited presentation of Martinsville reverting to town status finally occurred Tuesday night with little fanfare. A gathering of about 50 people filled most of the available seats in Martinsville City Council chambers. Among those in attendance were former mayors Gene Teague and L.D. Oakes. Contitutional officers whose jobs would be eliminated should Martinsville revert to a town were also in attendance.

EDITORIALS


PRUDENT PLANS REQUIRE PUBLIC INPUT

Daily Press Editorial (Metered Paywall - 5 articles a month)

This week, Portsmouth city leaders announced their intentions to partner with a developer to build a casino and entertainment district near Victory Village. On the Peninsula, the fate of real estate at Riverview Farm Park became even more complex as Hampton Road Sanitation District revealed it wants to buy nearly 10 acres nearby to build a treatment facility. The park’s future has been the topic of ongoing debate.


NO EASY ANSWERS TO GUN VIOLENCE

Free Lance-Star Editorial (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)

In June, when Gov. Ralph Northam called a special session on gun control after the mass shooting by a municipal employee in Virginia Beach, he pointedly challenged the Republican-led General Assembly to come up with “votes and laws, not thoughts and prayers” to end gun violence in the commonwealth.


WHO WILL SPEAK FOR THE SMALL CITIES THAT MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL WANTS TO STRIKE OUT?

Roanoke Times Editorial (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)

It’s a tale we’ve heard many times before. A major corporation consolidates its operations in the name of ruthless efficiency, pulling out of small communities across the country altogether. It’s why the railroad that Roanoke helped birth is now based in Atlanta, and the downtown offices that company once occupied here have long since been sold. It’s why major banks boast of their international reach but are often absent from small towns.


MINOR LEAGUE BASEBALL PROPOSAL WOULD BE NO SMALL LOSS FOR VIRGINIA

Richmond Times-Dispatch Editorial (Metered Paywall - 5 articles a month)

Only so many Americans are fortunate enough to have Major League Baseball in their backyard. New York and Chicago have crosstown rivalries, while California has five pro teams from San Diego to San Francisco. While live TV coverage is ubiquitous, small towns support minor league teams to showcase their passion for America’s pastime.

COLUMNISTS


POLITIFACT: WITTMAN'S IMPEACHMENT SUBPOENA CLAIM GETS IT WRONG

By WARREN FISKE, WCVE

U.S. Rep. Rob Wittman took aim at House Democrats during a recent radio interview, claiming they have spent more time pursuing President Donald Trump’s impeachment than legislating. "The critical business of the nation is not getting done,” he said during a Nov. 11 interview with Jeff Katz on NewsRadio WRVA, “Everything has ground to a halt and everything becomes these hearings on impeachment. The ridiculous thing about this is there’s actually been more subpoenas issued by the majority than bills passed.”

OP-ED


PAASCH: VIRGINIA IMPROVES BUT MUCH WORK REMAINS TO DECREASE CONFLICT AFTER DIVORCE OR SEPARATION

By CHRISTIAN PAASCH, Published in the Roanoke Times (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)

What would you do if your child, who had been getting a D- on report cards, brought one home with a C- instead? Would you rejoice and say that’s good enough? Or would you view it as a decent start with plenty of opportunity for improvement? That is exactly the kind of improved position Virginia is in, based on recent legislative action by your Virginia affiliate of the National Parents Organization (NPO).

Paasch is a member of National Parents Organization of Virginia and has been appointed to the Trauma-Informed Care Working Group of the Governor’s Children’s Cabinet