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How Fairfax police handled a 34-hour barricade on a busy highway

By OLIVIA DIAZ, Washington Post (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)

When a 29-year-old woman, who authorities say was armed with a handgun, locked herself in a Jeep SUV on the side of Richmond Highway on Tuesday, Fairfax County police officers opted to wait her out. Police blocked off about a mile stretch of the six-lane roadway in both directions and urged her to come out of her vehicle over a loudspeaker, according to the department. At one point, an officer brought her a pack of cigarettes in an attempt to earn her trust, police said. Authorities said they also gave her doughnuts in exchange for a magazine of bullets.

VaNews March 31, 2023

Uncertainty surrounds nearly $30M solid waste shortfall

By DAVID MCGEE, Bristol Herald Courier (Metered Paywall - 15 articles a month)

Pending any possible financial assistance from the state or federal governments, city leaders may be forced to borrow $30 million to fund additional landfill remediation work. At its meeting on Tuesday, the Bristol Virginia City Council reviewed the details of a nearly $29 million funding shortfall in its solid waste operating budget for the upcoming fiscal year. That includes work underway now and scheduled to occur during the next fiscal year, which begins July 1.

VaNews March 31, 2023

Delays in elite Virginia high school awards not deliberate, investigation finds

By SARAH RANKIN, Associated Press

A third-party investigation into delays by a Northern Virginia public school district in recognizing student achievements on a standardized test found no evidence the delays were deliberate, the superintendent said this week. Fairfax County Public Schools Superintendent Michelle Reid also said in a letter to the community that the probe found “no evidence of any inequity or racial bias” in the way schools handled notification to those designated “commended students” by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation.

VaNews March 31, 2023

A court of dreams

Virginian-Pilot Editorial (Metered Paywall - 2 articles a month)

This could be a very special weekend for two groups of outstanding women in Virginia, one that could echo in gyms and blacktop courts across the commonwealth. The Virginia Tech women’s team will compete in their school’s first Final Four at 7 on Friday evening, with a chance to make Sunday’s national championship game. The Christopher Newport University women’s team will play for the Division III national title at noon on Saturday.

VaNews March 31, 2023

Sen. Hanger sends campaign-style mailing to new district but says he hasn’t decided whether to move yet

By MARKUS SCHMIDT, Cardinal News

One week before the April 6 filing deadline, Sen. Emmett Hanger, R-Augusta, has yet to make up his mind whether he will seek his party’s nomination in a newly created 3rd state Senate district. But on Thursday, some residents in Botetourt County and Roanoke County, which are located in the new district but outside Hanger’s current district, received a mailer from Hanger’s campaign boasting the headline “Senator Emmett Hanger – Honest Conservative Leadership.”

VaNews March 31, 2023

Lynchburg electoral board member resigns

By ANNA BRYSON, News & Advance (Metered Paywall - 18 articles a month)

Carolyn Sherayko, chair of the Lynchburg Electoral Board, has resigned from her position on the board effective immediately, she told The News & Advance this week, citing her concern over attempts to not reappoint the city’s registrar at the end of her term. Sherayko has served on the board since January 2021 as a Democratic representative, and previously served as the city’s general registrar until 2015.

VaNews March 31, 2023

Virginia Beach School Board reinstates class ratings, recognition for top students

By KELSEY KENDALL, Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 2 articles a month)

Five years after doing away with valedictorian and salutatorian designations for graduating seniors, the School Board voted to bring the titles back. Members voted Tuesday night 10-1 to bring back class rankings and recognize the top academic-achieving students. Board member Victoria Manning and several public speakers advocated for the change to honor academic achievements. Manning said emails from the community have shown “overwhelming support.”

VaNews March 31, 2023

Virginia Mirror Company fined $40,000 by the Va. Department of Environmental Quality

Martinsville Bulletin (Metered Paywall - 5 articles a month)

Today is the final day of a public comment period on an enforcement by the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) on Virginia Mirror Company Inc. (VMCI). An enforcement action has been proposed for Virginia Mirror Company Inc. for violations of the Virginia Waste Management Act and the applicable regulations at the Martinsville facility that occurred as part of the silvering and painting operations performed in the manufacturing process of mirrors and glass, according to the DEQ. The Department of Environmental Quality proposes to issue a consent order with a penalty in the amount of $40,000 to address the noncompliance.

VaNews March 31, 2023

More attend Roanoke gun violence meeting; youth curfew unpopular

By MOLLY HUNTER, Roanoke Times (Metered Paywall - 5 articles a month)

Expanding and focusing on enforcing Roanoke’s youth curfew were unpopular among those who spoke at Thursday evening’s meeting on youth safety at Patrick Henry High School. It was the second of two community meetings organized by the city of Roanoke to discuss the youth curfew as a solution to gun violence.

VaNews March 31, 2023

Data center group asks DEQ to withdraw policy change proposal for backup generators

By COY FERRELL, Loudoun Times (Metered Paywall - 5 articles a month)

Last year, Dominion Energy revealed that it had failed to upgrade its electric transmission infrastructure quickly enough to keep up with future demand for power data centers in eastern Loudoun County. In January, the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality proposed a stopgap measure, a temporary regulatory “variance” that would have allowed data centers to use their emergency-backup generators in limited, non-emergency situations to take pressure off the grid while Dominion works to build more transmission infrastructure.

VaNews March 31, 2023