The Virginia Public Access Project
Statewide, Virginia's unemployment rate in July fell to 3.1 percent. People are classified as unemployed if they do not have a job, have actively looked for work in the prior 4 weeks, and are currently available for work. VPAP has mapped the rate by locality, ranging from a low of 0.9 percent in Arlington County to a high of 6.3 percent in Petersburg.
By DIANA MCFARLAND, Smithfield Times (Paywall)
Isle of Wight County schools installed a series of locking door barricades on the division’s interior doors only to go back and disable the devices at the request of the fire marshal. “The division has removed the parts necessary to be in compliance with state fire codes,” said schools spokesperson Lynn Briggs.
By LAURA VOZZELLA, Washington Post (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)
A human rights lawyer hoping to pull the Virginia Senate to the left announced Thursday that she will challenge the chamber’s Democratic leader, Sen. Richard L. Saslaw, in a primary next year. Yasmine Taeb said she would swear off corporate campaign cash, push for a $15-an-hour minimum wage and oppose the death penalty
By GRAHAM MOOMAW, Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 5 articles a month)
Virginia lawmakers on Thursday sharply questioned the costs of the state’s preparations for Hurricane Florence, saying they were shocked to learn officials committed to spend up to $60 million to set up shelters and deploy response teams for a storm that ultimately veered south.
By LUZ LAZO, Washington Post (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)
Thousands of motorists are choosing to pay tolls to get ahead on the Washington region’s traffic-choked highways. On Interstates 495 and 95, where more than 45 miles of toll lanes have opened within the past six years, users selectively choose when to take the express lanes with only a small share — 5 percent of D.C.-area drivers — choosing to use the lanes every day, according to a new survey.
By JEFF BRANSCOME, Free Lance-Star (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)
Virginians overwhelmingly support expanding a federal health insurance program for the poor, according to a recent poll commissioned by the University of Mary Washington. Several months after a divided Virginia General Assembly voted to expand Medicaid with work requirements, the survey found that 76 percent of Virginians favor expansion
By ROBBY KORTH, Roanoke Times (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)
A former Virginia Tech researcher who left for the University of Virginia will get a pay raise and avenues to pursue other researchers to work with him, according to a copy of his job offer letter. He’s already been successful in coaxing at least seven of his former faculty colleagues to join him, according to a Tech spokesman. More could follow.
By JOSH MOODY, News & Advance (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)
Republican Corey Stewart was on friendly turf at conservative Liberty University Thursday evening, but it was Sen. Tim Kaine’s crowd that turned out. Kaine received overwhelming applause — and a few jeers — from an audience of around 500 at a town hall with Stewart, who received a polite ovation.
By PATRICK WILSON, Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 5 articles a month)
Yasmine Taeb, a Northern Virginia human rights lawyer and a member of the Democratic National Committee, announced Thursday that she’s launching a primary challenge to the most powerful Democrat in the Virginia Senate. Her challenge to Senate Minority Leader Dick Saslaw of Fairfax County, who represents the 35th state Senate District, pits an activist from the progressive wing of the party against a lawmaker who has served in the legislature since 1976 and is close with some of the state’s most influential lobbies.
By JEREMY LAZARUS, Richmond Free Press
After nearly a decade of using its own pricing list to purchase supplies from local companies and save money, Richmond City Hall last year shifted to using the state’s electronic purchasing system, known as eVA, after Mayor Levar M. Stoney took office. While it is not clear the shift further reduced city costs, the change has been shattering to black-owned businesses who previously supplied the city.