January 2013

You are browsing the archives for January 2013.
31 Jan 2013

Senate Bans Smoking in Cars with Kids

The Senate today passed a bill to prohibit smoking in a vehicle when a child under 15 is present.

31 Jan 2013

Governor Rejoices as Transportation Plan Moves Forward

Gov. Bob McDonnell has reason to celebrate after the House Finance Committee on Wednesday approved a key part of the transportation plan that he hopes will define his term.

31 Jan 2013

College Students Lobby for Education Funding

Nearly 100 college students gathered at the state Capitol on Wednesday to advocate for affordable, quality education.

30 Jan 2013

VCU Students Lobby During Rams Day on the Hill

VCU students urged state legislators Wednesday to invest in higher education during Rams Day on the Hill, an annual lobbying event at Capitol Square.

30 Jan 2013

Committee Sends ‘Boneta Bill’ to Full House

The grassroots-supported “Boneta Bill,” meant to protect farmers’ rights, won overwhelming approval from a House committee on Wednesday and moves on to its first reading in the full House of Delegates on Thursday.

29 Jan 2013

Live-blog: Public Square about Guns

Here is Sam Isaac’s live-blog of the Richmond Times-Dispatch’s Public Square community forum about gun issues.

29 Jan 2013

Bicyclists Push for Share-the-Road Laws

Brantley Tyndall, a Richmond bicyclist since 2007, used his only form of transportation to show up in support of Bicycle Action Day at the Capitol. This session, Virginia legislators have introduced bills that would make biking safer for both cyclists and drivers across the Commonwealth.

29 Jan 2013

NOVA May Get More Road Maintenance Funds

Northern Virginia would get a bigger share of the state’s highway maintenance funds under legislation being sponsored by Delegate Jim LeMunyon, R-Oak Hill. House Bill 1884 would allocate the funds “on the basis of vehicle miles traveled in each highway construction district compared to vehicle miles traveled in the Commonwealth as a whole.”

29 Jan 2013

Panel Amends, OKs ‘Boneta Bill’

Supporters of the so-called Boneta Bill, aimed at protecting the rights of farmers, came to Capitol Square wearing pitchfork buttons with stickers that said, “Stay out of grandma’s kitchen.” They lined the wall of a conference room where the House Agriculture Subcommittee met Monday to decide whether to recommend approval of the measure. Virginians in support of the bill and lobbyists against it came from all over the state to share their perspective. After an hour of debate, the subcommittee voted 6-1 in support of the legislation.

29 Jan 2013

Virginia Inmate Granted Hearing for Sex Change

A Virginia prison inmate seeking a sex-change operation won a legal victory Monday when a federal appeals panel ordered a lower court to hear the case.

28 Jan 2013

Congressmen Asked to Oppose Tolls on I-95

A bipartisan group of 10 Virginia House members has sent a letter to the state’s congressional delegation, urging the federal legislators to join in opposing the Virginia Department of Transportation’s plans to charge tolls on Interstate 95.

28 Jan 2013

Senate OKs Soccer Goal Safety Law

A bill that aims to prevent death or injury from falling soccer goals has cleared the Senate and is now being considered by the House.

27 Jan 2013

I-64 May Get Millions to Ease Congestion

Gov. Bob McDonnell’s transportation budget would provide millions of dollars for road and rail projects along Interstate 64 from Newport News to Richmond to ease traffic congestion.

27 Jan 2013

Panel Nixes Tax Credits for Hiring Va. Graduates

Students receiving degrees from Virginia’s public colleges and universities may struggle to find employment, after a House subcommittee killed legislation that would have given small businesses a $2,500 tax credit for hiring such graduates.

26 Jan 2013

Sidebar: In Gun Debate, Legislators Target Mental Health

Virginia’s General Assembly is also focused on preventing campus shootings like the one at Virginia Tech, but gun control is only one segment of the issue.

26 Jan 2013

Vice President Biden Discusses Guns at VCU

Vice President Joe Biden held a round-table discussion about gun violence Friday at Virginia Commonwealth University, saying “we cannot remain silent” on the issue.

25 Jan 2013

Biden Invites VCU into National Discussion

While Virginia Commonwealth University isn’t the center of the gun debate triggered by December’s school shootings in Connecticut, Vice President Joe Biden got VCU’s help Friday in continuing the national dialogue on the matter.

25 Jan 2013

Democrats Blast Senate Committee Appointments

In January, Norfolk Democrat Kenny Alexander replaced the late Yvonne Miller in the Virginia Senate. On Thursday, Alexander finally got his committee assignments: He received seats on three of the four committees on which Miller served. But Miller’s most important assignment – a seat on the Senate Finance Committee – was given to a Republican, in what Democrats called partisan politics.

24 Jan 2013

Live Blog: Vice President Discusses Guns at VCU

Here’s our live-blog of Vice President Joe Biden’s visit to VCU.

24 Jan 2013

Critics Say Bills Would Suppress Voting Rights

Virginia New Majority, a citizens’ group that supports “the progressive transformation of Virginia,” said Republican legislators are pushing bills that would suppress voting rights.

23 Jan 2013

Governor Stirs the Pot at Capitol Square

Brunswick County’s best stew master and crew warmed state officials, including Gov. Bob McDonnell and other visitors, at Capitol Square on Wednesday for the 13th annual Brunswick Stew Day at the General Assembly.

23 Jan 2013

Rally Marks Anniversary of Roe v. Wade

Abortion rights supporters made their way to the state Capitol grounds on Tuesday to mark the 40th anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade decision and to look to the future of women’s rights in Virginia.

22 Jan 2013

Students Attend Obama’s Inauguration

Students from Virginia Commonwealth University and colleges and high schools throughout the country were among the hundreds of thousands of spectators who heard President Barack Obama deliver his second inaugural address.

22 Jan 2013

Area Lawmakers Divided by Redistricting Controversy

Sen. Creigh Deeds, D-Bath, and Sen. Emmett Hanger Jr., R-Mount Solon, are friends. And they’ll remain friends, Deeds says, even if a controversial measure Hanger voted for costs Deeds his seat in the Virginia Senate.

22 Jan 2013

Restroom Access Act Killed by Subcommittee

A legislative panel has killed a bill designed to give Virginians suffering from Crohn’s disease or similar medical conditions immediate access to a toilet.

22 Jan 2013

House OKs Extending Excise Tax on Peanuts

The Virginia House of Delegates has voted to extend the state’s excise tax on peanuts – a move that will help promote the sale and marketing of one of the commonwealth’s top cash crops.

21 Jan 2013

A Rally for Those With Mental Disabilities

About 100 people, led by the Coalition for Virginians with Mental Disabilities, rallied at the Bell Tower on Capitol Square on Monday to encourage legislators to improve services for people with mental disabilities.

21 Jan 2013

Voting Reform Bill Killed in Senate

Democratic leaders are speaking out after a Republican-led Senate committee killed a bill that would allow for more convenient voting options, later hours at the polls and easier absentee voting.

20 Jan 2013

VPA Opposes Moving Public Notices Online

At their annual lobbying day, members of the Virginia Press Association opposed two House bills that would let local governments post their public notices on their websites instead of publishing them in local newspapers.

20 Jan 2013

Bills Would Ban Smoking in Cars with Kids

A bill to forbid smoking in cars carrying children is dead in the House, but a similar proposal remains alive in the Senate.

19 Jan 2013

Virginia Mulls In-State Tuition for Undocumented Immigrants

Six bills – two in the Senate and four in the House – seek to change Virginia law so that undocumented immigrants meeting certain criteria would be able to pay in-state college tuition.

19 Jan 2013

Bills Would Let Schools Start Before Labor Day

Lawmakers from across Virginia are pushing a half-dozen bills this legislative session to let public schools start classes before Labor Day.

19 Jan 2013

Caroline Delegate Supports Transportation Plan

Delegate Bobby Orrock, R-Caroline, has announced his support for Gov. Bob McDonnell’s transportation plan.

19 Jan 2013

Tech Professor Named Outstanding Scientist

Virginia Tech professor Patricia Dove was honored Thursday as a one of Virginia’s Outstanding Scientists of 2013.

17 Jan 2013

Review: ‘Ready Virginia’ App Isn’t ‘Ready’

Gov. Bob McDonnell, in conjunction with the Virginia Department of Emergency Management, released an emergency preparedness app for Virginians to use during disasters. The free application for iPhone and Android phones is called Ready Virginia.

17 Jan 2013

A Toast to Virginia’s Record Wine Sales

Gov. Bob McDonnell has good reason to break open a bottle of Virginia wine and celebrate: Wine produced by the state’s vineyards posted record sales last year.

17 Jan 2013

Day of Service ‘Not Just This One Day’

This Saturday will be a day dedicated to community service across the United States, with 16 events in the Richmond area. The National Day of Service precedes the holiday honoring Martin Luther King Jr. and the presidential inauguration.

17 Jan 2013

Survey from Students: No guns on campus

Eight out of 10 college students in Virginia are against allowing guns on campus, according to a statewide survey conducted by the advocacy group Virginia 21.

17 Jan 2013

Gubernatorial Candidates Even in Fundraising

Less than $150,000 separates Virginia’s two candidates for governor, according to campaign finance reports filed by Republican candidate Ken Cuccinelli and his Democratic challenger, Terry McAuliffe.

17 Jan 2013

Sidebar: Don’t Lift Ban, George Mason Student Says

As a freshman at George Mason University in Fairfax, Samantha Parsons became involved in the campus’ Environmental Action Group because she’s always cared about the environment.

17 Jan 2013

Is Uranium Mine Scaring People from Southside?

Delegate Don Merricks, a Republican from Pittsylvania County, said real estate agents are having trouble selling homes in Southside Virginia because prospective buyers are worried about legislative proposals to allow uranium mining there.

16 Jan 2013

Shakespeare Festival May Get Boost from State

A bill introduced by Sen. Thomas Norment, R-Williamsburg, would designate the Virginia Shakespeare Festival in Williamsburg as the official Shakespeare Festival of Virginia, in hopes of increasing tourism to the area.

16 Jan 2013

Cuccinelli Backs Human Trafficking Legislation

Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli called human trafficking one of the fastest-growing criminal enterprises in the country. He said Tuesday that Virginia was feeling the effect.

16 Jan 2013

Committee Will Consider Restoring Felons’ Rights

A Senate subcommittee tied 3-3 Tuesday on proposed constitutional amendments to restore the voting rights of nonviolent felons who’ve completed their sentences.

16 Jan 2013

Democrats Reveal Plans for Assembly

The Virginia Senate Democratic Caucus is calling for higher taxes to boost funding for transportation, education and other services.

15 Jan 2013

House Confirms Openly Gay Judge

The Virginia House of Delegates voted 66-28 today to confirm the permanent appointment of Tracy Thorne-Begland as a judge of Richmond’s Manchester General District Court. He is the first openly gay judge to serve in Virginia.

15 Jan 2013

Conservative Caucus Concerned About Roads Plan

Members of the General Assembly’s Conservative Caucus today detailed its concerns about Gov. Bob McDonnell’s transportation overhaul plan, which would eliminate Virginia’s gasoline tax and raise its state sales tax.

15 Jan 2013

Gov. McDonnell’s Roads Plan Evokes Mixed Responses

Legislators representing the city of Franklin have mixed feelings over Gov. Bob McDonnell’s plan to boost funding for transportation in Virginia by replacing the long-standing gas tax with an increase in the state’s sales tax designated for transportation.

15 Jan 2013

Court Won’t Delay Gleason Execution

The 4th U.S. Circuit Court Appeals denied a request for an emergency stay filed Monday to prevent the execution of Robert C. Gleason Jr.

14 Jan 2013

School Safety Panel Will Be ‘Reasonable, Not Reactionary’

Members of Gov. Bob McDonnell’s School and Campus Safety Task Force vowed Monday that their recommendations on keeping Virginia’s schools safe would be based on fact and not emotion.