• General Assembly 2018 reaches halftime

    RICHMOND — We’ve reached crossover, the halfway point of the General Assembly session when each chamber finishes its own bills and hear bills from the other chamber.
    The budget bill is the lone exception that doesn’t have to be complete yet – that has to be done by Sunday.
    Major agreements have come together around raising the felony threshold and reducing red tape in certain state departments.

  • Stricter seat-belt laws shelved for 2018 session

    RICHMOND — Virginia legislators have rejected all bills expanding seat-belt requirements in privately owned vehicles this session. The last two bills, requiring back-seat passengers to wear seat belts, were dismissed by a House subcommittee vote Jan. 23.

  • Carrico proposes salary funding for sheriffs

    Sen. Bill Carrico is petitioning for the creation of a salary fund for deputy sheriffs during this year’s meeting of the Virginia General Assembly.
    According to the state’s Legislative Information System (LIS), a bill for the creation of a “Deputy Sheriff Supplemental Salary Fund,” labeled SB #495, was prefiled Jan. 9 and offered Jan. 10. It has since been referred to the Committee on Finance for further consideration.

  • Citizens guide to the General Assembly

    Professional lobbyists aren’t the only ones who can have a voice at the General Assembly in Richmond. Thanks to the internet, you can see what legislators are up to and share your opinions.
    Here’s a guide to the basics for this year’s session, which runs through February:

    Do Your Homework
    Become familiar with the legislation beyond what you read or hear.

  • O’Quinn joins fight to save SWVA Training Center

    Del. O’Quinn has joined Sen. Campbell’s efforts to halt the impending closure of the Southwestern Virginia Training Center in Carroll County.  
    A pre-filed bill introduced Jan. 9, by Del. O’Quinn in this year’s General Assembly, labeled HB #806, seeks to prohibit the closure of the Southwestern Virginia Training Center (SWVTC) and the Southeastern Virginia Training Center (SEVTC).
    Del. Todd E. Pillion, R, of District 4, is also a patron of the bill.

  • McAuliffe’s budget aims to pad state reserves

    RICHMOND — One last shot at Medicaid expansion.
    That’s the big $584 million line item in Gov. Terry McAuliffe’s final two-year budget before he leaves office this month. He presented it to the General Assembly’s money committees in December.
    The governor has included expansion in every one of his budgets, but the Republican-controlled legislature has refused.

  • County plans various initiatives

    The Grayson County Board of Supervisors has approved a list of county-wide initiatives proposed by County Administrator Bill Shepley, for further study by a selection of committees. The initiatives directly align with the county’s comprehensive plan, and, according to Shepley, are ideas that will be explored by not just county officials and staff members, but the community as well.

  • Legislators prepare for General Assembly

    The time has come for our local legislators’ proposals to be proposed, heard and debated by the Virginia General Assembly, which is scheduled to begin today, Wednesday.
    Legislators representing the Twin County region (all or in part) have wasted no time preparing for this year’s session; and several have already filed bills for consideration.
    Here is a quick look at what has been filed so far:

    Del. Jeffrey L. Campbell
    R — Carroll, Smyth (part) and Wythe Counties

  • Supervisor warns successor of ‘super coyotes’

    INDEPENDENCE — Outgoing county board member Eddie Rosenbaum gave his final address to constituents during the Board of Supervisors’ December meeting, and used the time to address an issue that he has been passionate about during his time on the board.
    Rosenbaum vacated his seat on the board last month, after announcing in months prior that he would not run for another term due to health reasons. Thomas “Rex Revels took the seat representing the Wilson District on Jan. 1.

  • Efforts to save Training Center continue


    WOODLAWN — The Southwestern Virginia Training Center is slated to close in June 2018, but those who want to save the mental health facility have not given up hope.