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HOW COURT-DRAWN MAPS COULD ALTER PARTISAN LEAN OF AT LEAST 21 HOUSE DISTRICTS

The Virginia Public Access Project

A court-hired expert says he did not take election results into account when redrawing 11 House districts found to have been shaped with an arbitrary concentration of African-American voters. But the proposed changes to the maps would lead to major political consequences for some incumbent delegates who now represent the 21 to 26 affected districts

VaNews December 8, 2018



FEDERAL COURT RELEASES PLANS FOR POSSIBLE REDISTRICTING IN VIRGINIA, REFUSES TO DELAY PROCESS

By GREGORY S. SCHNEIDER, Washington Post (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)

A federal court on Friday night released proposals for drawing new House of Delegates districts in Virginia to repair 11 that were found to be racially gerrymandered. The 131-page report, prepared by California professor Bernard Grofman, contains several proposals for drawing new districts that the court will review ahead of a hearing scheduled for Jan. 10.

VaNews December 8, 2018



EXPERT REVEALS PROPOSAL TO REDRAW VA. HOUSE MAP

By GRAHAM MOOMAW, Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 5 articles a month)

An expert appointed to redraw the Virginia House of Delegates map released his proposal Friday after a federal court rejected a Republican effort to stop it. Bernard Grofman, a political science professor at the University of California-Irvine, filed his 131-page report late Friday afternoon outlining his suggestions for how Virginia could fix 11 House districts found to be racially gerrymandered.

VaNews December 8, 2018



VA. HOUSE DEMOCRATS TO PICK NEW LEADER SATURDAY

By GRAHAM MOOMAW, Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 5 articles a month)

Democrats in the Virginia House of Delegates will meet in Richmond this weekend to select a new leader. But no clear front-runner has emerged to succeed current Minority Leader David Toscano. Toscano will step aside from leadership at the end of the year, though he intends to seek re-election to the House next year. The shift will allow a new Democrat to take charge heading into a pivotal election year.

VaNews December 8, 2018



HERRING TO RUN FOR VIRGINIA GOVERNOR IN 2021

By LAURA VOZZELLA, Washington Post (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)

Virginia Attorney General Mark R. Herring will make a run for governor in 2021, attempting to use his perch as the state’s top lawyer as a springboard to the Executive Mansion. Herring, a Democrat who surprised many by taking a pass on the 2017 governor’s race, has been spreading the word to allies and donors in recent weeks. He confirmed his plans to The Washington Post on Friday.

VaNews December 8, 2018



AFTER 700 MEETINGS, DICK HARMAN TO SIGN OFF AS RICHMOND CITY COUNCIL’S PUBLIC ANNOUNCER

By MARK ROBINSON, Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 5 articles a month)

Roy West was Richmond’s mayor when Dick Harman attended his first meeting of the Richmond City Council as its new public announcer. The year was 1988, and Harman, a journeyman broadcaster who preferred sports over news, took the job on a trial run. “I said, ‘OK. Let’s give it 30 days. We’ll see how I like it.’”

VaNews December 8, 2018



AFTER AMAZON VICTORY, NORTHAM PLEDGES NO REGION WILL BE 'LEFT BEHIND'

By MICHAEL MARTZ, Richmond Times-Dispatch (Access to this article limited to subscribers)

After scoring a coup with Amazon’s decision to build a $2.5 billion corporate headquarters in Northern Virginia, Gov. Ralph Northam promised Friday to share prosperity with every region of the state under a new plan for building Virginia’s economy. Speaking to an overflow business audience with Amazon’s top economic development official at the front table, Northam said his native Eastern Shore, as well as Southside and Southwest Virginia, deserve the same kinds of opportunity that the project will bring to Northern Virginia.

VaNews December 8, 2018



MUSLIM ELECTED TO CONGRESS TELLS E.W. JACKSON TO 'JUST DEAL' AFTER HE COMPLAINED ABOUT HIJABS

Washington Post (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)

A Virginia pastor and political figure began his radio program Wednesday with an outraged rant about a rule change that congressional Democrats are proposing that would reverse a headwear ban on the floor of the House of Representatives. ...“The floor of Congress is now going to look like an Islamic republic,” E.W. Jackson, a socially conservative minister from Chesapeake, said on the show.

VaNews December 8, 2018



VIRGINIA BEACH TO STUDY REFORESTING SOUTHERN PARTS OF CITY TO BATTLE FLOODING

By PETER COUTU, Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)

Barbara Henley is excited about trees. Specifically, their ability to act like a pump — capturing, storing and removing water from the environment. Those traits could make them a key player in the fight against flooding. The Princess Anne councilwoman is spearheading an effort to examine how forests could help with an issue that's plaguing the southern, rural part of the city.

VaNews December 8, 2018



VCU BOARD APPROVES 14 PERCENT BONUS FOR UNIVERSITY PRESIDENT BEHIND CLOSED DOORS

By BRIDGET BALCH, Richmond Times-Dispatch (Access to this article limited to subscribers)

The Virginia Commonwealth University board of visitors approved a 14 percent bonus for President Michael Rao — already one of the highest-paid public university presidents in the U.S. — in a vote made behind closed doors Friday. The vote occurred while a sign placed in front of the doors of the meeting room prohibited public entry because the board was meeting in closed session. But Virginia’s open meetings law requires public boards to reconvene in an open session before voting on anything discussed in a closed meeting.

VaNews December 8, 2018