Capital News Service

Medicaid expansion debate rages on social media

Capital News Service

Social media acts as the latest mouthpiece to the General Assembly stalemate, which has left the state budget in limbo and 400,000 Virginians wondering if Medicaid expansion will grant them access to health care.
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Senate budget reinstates Marketplace Virginia

Capital News Service

The battle for a passable Virginia budget continues in the General Assembly after the Senate passed a budget bill Tuesday that the House of Delegates likely will reject, replacing Medicaid with Marketplace Virginia.
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Legislation restricting fox pens awaits governor’s signature

Capital News Service

Anyone erecting or maintaining an enclosure for the purpose of pursuing, hunting or killing fox or coyote with dogs will face Class 1 misdemeanor charges if Senate Bill 42 is signed by Gov. Terry McAuliffe.
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Sunday hunting bill signed into law

Capital News Service

Virginians will have the right to hunt on Sunday beginning July 1, 2014 according to a bill signed into law this week by Gov. Terry McAuliffe.
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GOP House leaders request special session on Medicaid expansion

Capital News Service

Republican leaders in the Virginia House of Delegates have proposed a special legislative session to address the debate on Medicaid expansion just three days before the General Assembly is scheduled to adjourn.
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CVS readies for future, will stop selling tobacco Oct. 1

Capital News Service

The giant U.S. pharmacy chain CVS announced it will stop selling all tobacco products nationwide as of Oct. 1, 2014.
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GA delaying individual school grading system

Capital News Service

The House Education Committee approved a bill delaying the implementation of a new grading system for schools this past week, but some delegates are questioning if the new system meets the needs of Virginia schools, parents and communities.
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Medicaid expansion battle foreshadows potential Va. government shutdown

Capital News Service

Virginia’s Republican-dominated House of Delegates and Democratic Senate both passed competing versions of a two-year, $96 billion state budget bill this past week, but not before the GOP reinforced its stern opposition to Medicaid expansion.
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Bill gives officers more options, dogs more chances

Capital News Service

A bill giving animal control officers flexibility in dealing with livestock-injuring dogs is heading to the desk of Gov. Terry McAuliffe for signature, after passing the Senate unanimously this week.
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Herring supports court’s gay-marriage decision

Capital News Service

The fight for marriage equality for same-sex couples in Virginia continues to progress through the courts this week after a federal judge ruled the state’s ban on gay marriage as unconstitutional. Federal District Judge Arenda Wright Allen struck down the law used in the controversial Bostic v. Rainey case as unconstitutional.
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Women’s health divides General Assembly

Capital News Service

The Republican-sponsored law that presently mandates ultrasound tests for women seeking abortion services may face repeal after Senate Bill 617 narrowly passed this week through the Senate’s Health and Education Committee.
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Sunday hunting bills progress through General Assembly

Two bills seeking to allow Sunday hunting of deer and wild animals on private Virginia property and state waters are progressing through the General Assembly. However, hunting with dogs or hunting within 200 yards of a house of worship would be prohibited.
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Bill proposes animal cruelty registry for Virginia

Capital News Service

An online animal cruelty registry will be established in the Commonwealth of Virginia this month if Senate Bill 32 is passed. Sen. William Stanley, R-Richmond, says now is the time for Virginia to pass its own registry bill
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Senate rethinks uranium exploration guidelines

Capital News Service

Senate Bill 547 is being tabled until the 2015 General Assembly session. The bill would have required Virginia Uranium Inc. and other permit holders to reimburse the State Department of Health for periodically providing a nontechnical analysis of water supply samples to residents within 750 feet of uranium exploration activity.
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Virginia lawmakers introduce anti-human trafficking bills

Capital News Service

Virginia General Assembly members have introduced multiple anti-human trafficking bills for the current legislative session.
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Ethics bill aims to reform FOIA again

Capital News Service

Among the flurry of ethics reform bills being proposed throughout the Virginia General Assembly is Senate Bill 212, which would remove Freedom of Information Act exemptions for legislators and their aides.
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House kills bill limiting overdose prosecution

Capital News Service

Legislation protecting Virginians reporting drug overdoses was introduced earlier this month after years of lobbying by a Virginia Commonwealth University student organization, but the bill will have to wait to be heard during next year’s General Assembly.
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Legislators revisit mental health services

Capital News Service

A proposed joint subcommittee stands at the center of a clearly defined focus on mental health services in Virginia less than two months after tragedy shook the state capital.
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Lt. governor race may reshape Virginia Senate

Republican officials may be smiling even if E.W. Jackson, their candidate for lieutenant governor, loses on Tuesday as polls predict. That’s because Democratic nominee Ralph Northam would have to give up his seat in the now-evenly-divided Virginia Senate – opening the door for Republicans to capture an outright majority in that chamber.
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No ‘dangerous dogs’ roam Rapp

You may have your own definition of what constitutes a dangerous dog. But Virginia law lays out a clear legal definition of what a dangerous dog is, and there are four in Richmond.
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Home schooling on the rise in Virginia

Amy Wilson, left, director of governmental affairs at Organization of VaHomeschoolers, sits with the organization’s president, Parrish Mort, at a recent conference. Photo by VCU CNS.

The number of home-schoolers in Virginia has increased by more than 50 percent over the past decade, to more than 32,000 children. If they were a school district, it would be the ninth-largest in the state – with almost as many students as the Norfolk Public Schools.
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Ex-felon’s voting rights, and hopes, restored

Michael Maupin. Photo by CNS/VCU.

About 12 years ago, Michael Maupin lost his right to vote in Virginia because of a felony drug conviction. But Maupin has hope for the future because he just received a letter from Gov. Bob McDonnell restoring his civil rights.
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For Virginia inmates, little hope of parole 

The Virginia Parole Board last year granted parole in less than 4 percent of the cases it considered. Even old men – prisoners in their 70s and 80s who have served decades behind bars – were routinely denied parole.
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Groups, legislators tackle human trafficking

Human trafficking survivors and support groups are speaking out and working with state legislators to combat the problem of human trafficking in Virginia.
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Virginia’s suicide rate highest in 13 years

Virginia’s suicide rate is the highest it’s been in 13 years, according to the state’s chief medical examiner. Experts say the causes may include the poor economy and lack of mental health services.
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Legislative issues fueled partisan ill will

Governor Bob McDonnell signing the budget bill. Photo courtesy Gov. McDonnell’s office.

An ominous “MLK Day plot.” A proposed overhaul of the Electoral College system. Voter ID legislation. Those are issues that fueled partisanship at the Virginia Capitol this year and turned the bad blood between Republicans and Democrats into one of the most talked-about topics of the General Assembly’s session.
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Transportation creates rift among lawmakers

Traffic backup on I-95 north in Richmond. VDOT photo.

No General Assembly session is without its ups and downs, quarrels and disputes. However, the 2013 session may have taken the trophy for the most sparring between Democrats and Republicans – especially when it came to transportation.
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Law against texting will save lives, group says

By
April 26, 2013

A new state law to stiffen penalties for Virginians caught texting while driving will save countless lives, the head of a nonprofit driving safety organization says.
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Poor pay more to fund roads, report says 

By
April 23, 2013

Virginia’s multibillion-dollar transportation funding package will put a heavier burden on lower-income households than on more affluent families, according to a Richmond-based think tank.
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Democrats slam Republicans over corporate ties

By
April 19, 2013

The spotlight continues to stay on Gov. Bob McDonnell and Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli over their dealings with Star Scientific Inc., which has been accused of trying to curry favor with state officials.
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Debating the math on education funding

By
April 18, 2013
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During the General Assembly’s 2013 session, state legislators debated how much to spend on public education. But has education funding been going up or down? It depends on whom you ask.
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Board OKs strict rules for abortion clinics

By
April 18, 2013

The Virginia Board of Health voted Friday to require abortion clinics to meet hospital building-code standards – rules that abortion rights activists said would force many of the state’s 20 clinics to close.
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Nuclear authority generates controversy

By
April 18, 2013

Virginia is creating a new agency to support development of nuclear power – a move that has upset environmentalists and open-government advocates, because the entity won’t have to comply with the state’s Freedom of Information Act and other laws.
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Pawnshops to require more ID from sellers

By
April 18, 2013

To curb the sale of stolen property, pawnshops soon will keep a photo of people who sell the stores items. And pawnbrokers will be prohibited from receiving or re-selling goods if the original serial number has been altered or changed in some way.
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Assembly approves anti-abortion amendment

The General Assembly on Wednesday narrowly approved an amendment by Gov. Bob McDonnell that will prohibit certain health insurance companies in Virginia from providing coverage for women seeking an abortion.
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State budget increases funding for education

During the final hours of Wednesday’s reconvened session, the General Assembly approved a state budget that boosts funding for Virginia’s public schools next year.
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New law declares parental rights ‘fundamental’

By
March 31, 2013

Starting July 1, parents in Virginia will have “a fundamental right to make decisions concerning the upbringing, education, and care” of their children.
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VaHomeschoolers celebrates 20th anniversary

By
March 29, 2013
VaHomeschoolers celebrates 20th anniversary

Interested and anxious parents and rambunctious and excited students packed the Cultural Arts Center last weekend to share a common interest: home schooling. The Organization of Virginia Homeschoolers celebrated its 20th anniversary while providing introductory information for interested attendees and a new perspective for home-schooling parents and students.
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Governor signs law designating Shakespeare Festival

By
March 29, 2013
Governor signs law designating Shakespeare Festival

All’s well that ends well, Shakespeare’s own words, as the Virginia Shakespeare Festival at the College of William and Mary will become the official Shakespeare Festival of Virginia starting July 1.
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‘Siri, how will the texting law work?’

By
March 26, 2013

Virginia drivers should get used to hitting “send” on their phones before they get behind the wheel. Beginning July 1, a new state law cracks down on texting while driving. Gov. Bob McDonnell approved the law Monday but recommended the proposed fines be reduced.
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