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VaNews

VaNews for George Barker



VIRGINIA REDISTRICTING AMENDMENT ADVANCES TO THE SENATE

By DANIEL BERTI, Capital News Service

A constitutional amendment aiming to create an independent redistricting commission in Virginia has reached the Senate floor and may come up for a vote this week. Under the amendment, an independent commission — instead of legislators — would redraw districts for the U.S. House of Representatives, Virginia Senate and House of Delegates in 2021 after the U.S. Census Bureau releases new population and demographic data.

VaNews January 28, 2019



FUNDING SOUGHT FOR MEDICAID 'WAIVERS,' MEDICATION-ASSISTED TREATMENT FOR ADDICTS

By JILL PALERMO, Prince William Times

The list of needs Prince William social services agencies shared with two state senators Friday is long but focuses mostly on one thing: the need for more money. Members of the county’s appointed Community Services Board told state Sens. Jeremy McPike, D-29th, and George Barker, D-39th, the county needs more funding for “Medicaid waivers” and medication-assisted treatment for substance abuse, as well as supportive housing, mental health counseling and workforce services for the intellectually disabled.

VaNews December 21, 2018



PROGRAM LINKING MILITARY MEDICS WITH CIVILIAN JOB OPPORTUNITIES BECOMES PERMANENT

By ALANA DAVITT, Inside Business

Gov. Ralph Northam signed legislation on June 25 making the Virginia's Military Medics and Corpsmen program permanent. The program was previously a pilot initiative administered by the Department of Veterans Services. It provides training and assistance to former military medics and corpsman in obtaining credentials and jobs in the civilian health care system. Northam ceremonially signed the bill in Norfolk at the Veterans Employment Center.

VaNews June 29, 2018



NO BUDGET VOTES AT SENATE FINANCE COMMITTEE

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

There weren’t the votes — and therefore there was not a vote — as a key state Senate panel considered Medicaid expansion and an end to Virginia’s budget impasse. But what members of the Senate Finance Committee said as its health and human resources panel met Tuesday signaled what at least some Senate Republicans want any budget compromise to address — whether they end up voting for Medicaid expansion or not.

VaNews May 16, 2018



A SECOND HOSPITAL TAX EMERGES AS SENATE STRUGGLES WITH BUDGET

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

As the Senate struggles with options for adopting a state budget, its Finance Committee is considering an additional tax on hospital revenues to generate federal dollars for reimbursing their treatment of patients in Virginia’s Medicaid program. The budget plans the House of Delegates adopted almost a month ago would impose a tax on hospital revenues

VaNews May 16, 2018



YOU’LL BE ABLE TO TEXT 911 IN VIRGINIA, THANKS TO THESE TEENAGERS

By DEBBIE TRUONG, Washington Post (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)

Local agencies in Virginia must accept text messages to 911 under a recently passed law that was the brainchild of four Centreville High School students. The measure, sponsored by Sen. George L. Barker (D-Alexandria), emerged as part of a U.S. government class assignment at the Northern Virginia school.

VaNews April 24, 2018



IMPACT OF 2018 VIRGINIA GENERAL ASSEMBLY ON EVERYDAY LIFE

By JORDAN PASCALE , Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)

The Virginia General Assembly wrapped up last weekend with legislators passing 919 bills. Many are narrow carve-outs affecting a small group of people, like staggering the election of City Council members in the small southwestern town of Buchanan. Others deal with rather trivial things that don’t seem like they need a law – such as the one allowing your kids to bring sunscreen to school without a doctor's note.

VaNews March 19, 2018



THIS TUITION-CONTROL BILL PASSED THE HOUSE 99-0. THEN IT WENT TO THE SENATE FINANCE COMMITTEE.

By PATRICK WILSON, Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 5 articles a month)

Del. Jason Miyares worked several jobs in college at James Madison University and graduated in 1998 with little debt. Tuition in Virginia has increased 74 percent from 2006 to 2016, and Miyares, R-Virginia Beach, knows the times you could work your way through college are over.

VaNews February 21, 2018



HOW STUDENTS AT ONE VIRGINIA SCHOOL TURN LESSONS INTO LAWS

By DEBBIE TRUONG, Washington Post (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)

Thu Le landed on the video as she scrolled through her Facebook feed. It told the story of a woman whose boyfriend didn’t believe a text message she sent saying she’d been kidnapped. The woman, Le thought, should have been able to text 911, “to get the help that she needed.” And so an idea was born for legislation that the 18-year-old Le and three other students would steer to the Virginia General Assembly.

VaNews February 9, 2018



SENATE PANEL BACKS EXTENDING SALES TAX TO SERVICES LIKE UBER AND LYFT FOR MASS TRANSIT FUNDING

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

A Senate panel has endorsed extending state and regional sales taxes to ride services such as Uber and Lyft in order to raise more than $21 million a year for mass transit systems across Virginia, replacing the use of state-backed bonds to pay for new buses and other capital needs. The Senate Finance transportation subcommittee also voted separately Wednesday to impose a 2.1 percent motor fuels tax along a 325-mile swath of western Virginia to help pay for improvements to Interstate 81 from Bristol to the West Virginia panhandle.

VaNews February 8, 2018