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VaNews

Friday August 23, 2019

EXECUTIVE BRANCH


VIRGINIA’S FIRST LADY VISITS LOCAL SCHOOLS

By DAVID BROYLES, Carroll News

First Lady Pamela Northam visited early childhood education programs and elementary schools in each of the Commonwealth’s eight Superintendent Regions this week, highlighting the importance of school readiness. Two local locations she visited Aug. 21 were St. Paul Elementary and Independence Elementary.

STATE ELECTIONS


HARDING ISSUES SENATE DEBATE CHALLENGE TO DEEDS

By MIKE BOLLINGER, Highland Recorder (Subscription required)

Independent Elliott Harding, who is challenging incumbent Creigh Deeds (D-Bath) for the 25th district seat in the Virginia Senate, has proposed a series of six debates between the two beginning the week of Sept. 23.

FEDERAL ELECTIONS


TRUMP CAMPAIGN SEEKS TO MOBILIZE WOMEN IN 2020 BATTLEGROUND STATES

Reuters

President Donald Trump's re-election campaign hosted events in 2020 battleground states on Thursday to mobilize and train suburban women, an important voting bloc that defected from Republicans during last year's congressional contests....Jessie Jane Duff, a member of the advisory board for the Trump campaign's women coalition, told about 100 mostly white women packed into the basement of the Fairfax County Republican Party headquarters in Virginia that "the greatest threat to Democrats are right here. Women."

STATE GOVERNMENT


VIRGINIA SUPREME COURT UPHOLDS CIRCUIT COURT DECISION IN HHHUNT LAWSUIT AGAINST HENRICO COUNTY

By C. SUAREZ ROJAS, Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 5 articles a month)

The Virginia Supreme Court on Thursday upheld a circuit court ruling favorable to Henrico County in a dispute with the development arm of HHHunt Corp. The company initially sued Henrico two years ago after Wyndham residents successfully lobbied the county’s Board of Supervisors to abandon plans to extend a road there into a proposed development across the Hanover County line.

ECONOMY/BUSINESS


FAUQUIER MAN AMONG 955 CERTIFIED HEMP FARMERS IN VIRGINIA

By DON DEL ROSSO, Fauquier Now

Eager for a new career, the Marshall-based contractor has plunged into the hemp production business. “I think I’ve had enough of going up to Northern Virginia, making the commute to look for work,” explained Travis Lane, 29, who owns a pool construction and landscaping company.

TRANSPORTATION


‘IT’S A WASTE OF TIME’: WASHINGTON IS NO. 3 IN TRAFFIC CONGESTION, STUDY SAYS

By DANA HEDGPETH, Washington Post (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)

It comes as no surprise to commuters: The nation’s traffic is bad and getting worse. Drivers in the Washington region are feeling their share of road congestion, spending more time sitting in traffic, on average, than anyone outside of California. Washington drivers spend 102 hours each year in traffic delays, the third-highest amount in the nation, according to a report released Thursday by the Texas A&M Transportation Institute.

VIRGINIA OTHER


ACROSS VIRGINIA, BELLS WILL HONOR FIRST AFRICAN ARRIVALS

By MEL LEONOR, Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 5 articles a month)

Bells will toll for four minutes Sunday at Fort Monroe in Hampton and throughout the state to mark the four centuries that have passed since the arrival of the first Africans to English North America.


ENVIRONMENTAL GROUPS SEEK TOTAL HALT TO WORK ON MOUNTAIN VALLEY PIPELINE

By LAURENCE HAMMACK, Roanoke Times (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)

A voluntary suspension of work on parts of the Mountain Valley Pipeline does not adequately protect endangered species, environmentalists say in their latest legal strike against the besieged project. In a motion filed late Wednesday, seven organizations asked a federal appeals court to stay a 2017 approval for the pipeline by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.


REPORT: PENNSYLVANIA CITY RESPONSIBLE FOR SENDING LARGE AMOUNTS OF POLLUTION INTO CHESAPEAKE BAY

By SCOTT DANCE, Baltimore Sun

Baltimore frequently gets the blame for millions of gallons of wastewater that flows from its sewers into waterways, but there is another city responsible for sending large amounts of such contamination and bacteria into the Chesapeake Bay, according to a new report. Overflows from the antiquated sewer system in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, sent more than 1 billion gallons of sewage-tainted wastewater down the Susquehanna River in 2018,

LOCAL


CONTRACTOR WARNED SCHOOL OFFICIALS OF UNCLEANED HVAC UNITS

By JIM MCCONNELL AND RICH GRISET, Chesterfield Observer

Months before the Virginia Department of Health began investigating an increase in cases of Legionnaires’ disease in Chesterfield, the contractor hired to service HVAC units at county schools repeatedly alerted school officials about significant maintenance problems and recommended testing for Legionella bacteria, documents show.


ROANOKE POLICE HAND OUT $250 TICKETS FOR HOLDING A PHONE IN A WORK ZONE

By JEFF STURGEON, Roanoke Times (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)

When the police officer asked Theresa Passeretti, “Do you know why I pulled you over?” she said she honestly didn’t know. Police have been ticketing motorists for driving in highway construction zones while holding a phone, an act that’s now against the law in Virginia.


BOARD TABLES RESOLUTION ON I-81 FUEL TAX

By SHERESE GORE, Smith Mountain Eagle

The Franklin County Board of Supervisors tabled a resolution that would have requested that the Virginia General Assembly re-evaluate Interstate 81 fuel tax legislation.


FRAUD INVESTIGATOR KEEPS EYE ON SOCIAL SERVICES

By LINDA CICOIRA, Eastern Shore Post

The diligent work of fraud investigator Frances Bailey, of the Accomack County Department of Social Services, is saving thousands of dollars for the local agency. Bailey reported Tuesday that she kept $8,350 in cooling assistance benefits from being fraudulently distributed in the last three months by making sure that only those who were eligible received air-conditioning units for their homes.

EDITORIALS


HEARINGS EXTEND INACTION ABOUT GUNS

Virginian-Pilot Editorial (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)

When, in the wake of the deadly shooting at the Virginia Beach Municipal Center that claimed 13 lives, Gov. Ralph Northam called lawmakers to Richmond for a special legislative session on gun violence, many of the bills proposed for consideration were quite familiar to lawmakers.

THE FRIDAY READ


A WOMAN’S QUEST TO DISCOVER WHAT HAPPENED TO HER JAPANESE GRANDFATHER AFTER WORLD WAR II

By DENISE WATSON, Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)

Regina Boone pulled the papers out of the fireproof bag. For more than 20 years, she protected the thick package through her moves from teaching in Japan, to her years as a graduate student in Ohio, then as a photojournalist in Richmond, Norfolk, and now, on this December night in 2016, in Detroit. She'd skimmed the pages before but she was finally ready to make good on her promise.