Drug Manufacturer Announces $12.5 Million Packaging Center in Virginia

Pharmaceutical manufacturer Granules India, Ltd., announced a $12.5 million investment to create a drug packaging and shipping center in Prince William County. The India-based company manufactures off-patent drugs like ibuprofen and acetaminophen and said the center would help them be more vertically integrated, starting with the initial pharmaceutical component and going to final steps in the process.

“The addition of a U.S. packaging facility will result in Granules being among the few pharmaceutical companies to be vertically integrated from API [active pharmaceutical ingredient] to packaging, which will bolster the robustness of Granules’ supply chain while also enabling the company to react even faster to consumers’ growing needs for pharmaceutical products,” company Founder Dr. Krishna Prasad Chigurupati said in a press release from the governor’s office

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Outgoing Georgia Lieutenant Governor Duncan Says He Didn’t Vote for Either Herschel Walker or Raphael Warnock

Outgoing Lieutenant Governor Geoff Duncan (R) told CNN on Wednesday that he couldn’t bring himself to vote for either Senator Raphael Warnock (D-GA) or Herschel Walker.

“I showed up to vote this morning. I was one of those folks who got in line and spent about an hour waiting. And you know, it was the most disappointing ballot I’ve ever stared at my entire life since I started voting. You know, I had two candidates that I just couldn’t find anything that made sense for me to put my vote behind and so I walked out of that ballot box, showing up to vote, but not voting for either one of them,” Duncan said.

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Warnock Continues to Hold Advantage in Fundraising And Spending

Senator Raphael Warnock (D-GA) continues to out-raise and out-spend Republican Herschel Walker in the race for Senate, having $29.7 million cash on hand against Walker’s $9.8 million by a November 16 report.

Outside spending is also playing a big role: Open Secrets reports about $60 million in spending for both candidates in the runoff alone, and on Wednesday, pro-Warnock group Georgia Honor announced a $5.83 million ad buy featuring an attack ad aimed at Walker, according to NBC. The same day, another pro-Warnock group Majority Forward announced $11 million in spending on a massive door-knocking operation ahead of the December 6 vote, according to The Washington Post.

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U.S. Department of Education Finds Fairfax Schools Didn’t Provide Necessary Services to Students with Disabilities During Remote Learning

The U.S. Department of Education found that Fairfax County Public Schools didn’t take needed steps to ensure that students with disabilities received a legally-guaranteed free appropriate public education (FAPE) during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Based on the evidence obtained through the Division’s documents and data, as well as interviews of administrators, OCR [Office for Civil Rights] found that the Division failed or was unable to provide a FAPE to thousands of qualified students with disabilities in violation of Section 504,” OCR District of Columbia Regional Director Emily Frangos wrote in a Wednesday letter to FCPS Superintendent Dr. Michelle Reid.

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‘Mega MAGA Bus Tour’ Bus Tour Launches to Support Walker, Lift Republican Turnout

A “Mega MAGA Georgia Bus Tour” to boost Republican turnout in the runoff election between Herschel Walker and Senator Raphael Warnock (D-GA), a continuation of GOP efforts to get supporters to embrace early voting. The tour has nine scheduled stops beginning Tuesday morning on the outskirts of Atlanta before heading north, and organizers confirmed that Walker will attend some stops, although specific details are still pending.

The tour comes after the same organizers supported Trump-endorsed former Senator David Perdue in his efforts to primary Governor Brian Kemp, who easily defeated Perdue. That’s left some antipathy in the Georgia GOP at a time when the party can’t afford to lose either moderates or MAGA voters. Kemp has appeared at rallies for Walker, and both are supporting Walker while maintaining distance from each other. Fredericks sees the tour as a chance for party unity.

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Virginia Department of Education Delays Implementation of New Transgender Policies While Trying to Review 71,298 Public Comments

A required minimum 30-day period for the Youngkin administration to review public comment on new draft transgender model policies ended, but the Virginia Department of Education is taking more time to review the 71,298 comments, according to Director of Communications and Constituent Services Charles Pyle.

“The model policies and guidance document has not been finalized and will not be – as stated by Superintendent of Public Instruction Jillian Balow – until the department has reviewed all of the comments received during the public comment period,” Pyle told The Virginia Star.

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Pamunkey, Mattaponi Tribes Present Tribute in 345th Ceremony Since 1677 Treaty

Representatives of the Pamunkey and Mattaponi tribes presented Governor Glenn Youngkin with a tribute of deer and tribal gifts, the 345th time tribes have presented tribute to the Virginia governor since the 1677 signing of the Articles of Peace, later known as the Treaty of Middle Plantation.

“At this time we’re here honoring our treaty obligations that I am so proud that the Pamunkey and the Mattaponi have been able to continue for over three centuries doing this. It’s a great honor,” Pamunkey Chief Robert Gray said in the Wednesday ceremony. “And we also thank the Commonwealth of Virginia for what they’ve done for us over the years.”

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Big Weekend Early Voting Turnout Seems Hopeful for Warnock but Republicans See Strong Monday Rural Turnout

Georgia voters are turning out in high numbers for early voting in the runoff election between Senator Raphael Warnock (D-GA) and Herschel Walker. 181,711 voters turned out over the weekend, including 166,325 early-in-person voters according to data from the Secretary of State’s Office updated early Monday morning.

The election started last week in some counties that opted into earlier voting including Saturday, but all counties were required to begin early voting by Monday. Twitter pundits noted that many rural counties didn’t embrace the earlier start of voting, an apparent strategic blunder for Republicans who are trying to shift GOP voter culture to embrace early voting, placing Walker behind in the turnout battle. But Georgia Republicans expect their voters to make up for that with turnout going forward, reporting strong rural turnout on Monday.

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Hyundai’s Electric Vehicle Systems Supplier Announces $926 Million Facility in Bryan County

Automotive parts manufacturer Hyundai Mobis plans a $926 million Electric Vehicle (EV) Power Electric system plant in Bryan County; the plant will supply systems to Hyundai factories in Bryan County and in Alabama, and to the Kia Georgia plant in West Point.

“Hyundai Mobis’ investment project in Bryan County reflects an acceleration in the development of the EV supply chain in Georgia’s auto industry,” Hyundai Mobis Electric Powertrain Business Unit Vice President H. S. Oh said in a press release. “We’re going to be a major production player in the EV market, and that’s going to trigger more growth within the sector. Mobis is looking forward to providing high-quality work opportunities to the growing local workforce.”

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Virginia Rep. Good Commits to ‘No’ Vote on Kevin McCarthy for Speaker

Congressman Bob Good (R-VA-05) said he won’t vote for Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA-21) for Speaker of the House when Republicans take the majority in the upcoming congressional session.

“Is there anything that Kevin McCarthy or the folks around him could do to persuade you to flip your vote to a yes,” Steve Bannon asked Good in a Friday interview on War Room.

“No, sir, because there’s a lot of good quality candidates, and again, there’s  half a dozen of us or so who have come out in public, I believe there’s man more that will come out public and will stand strong and vote with us on January 3,” Good said.

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Georgia Supreme Court Allows State Abortion Ban to Temporarily Stay in Place

The Georgia Supreme Court has allowed the state’s six-week abortion ban to remain in effect, issuing a Wednesday order staying a lower court order blocking the ban while the state appeals the injunction against the ban.

The law was originally passed in 2019, effective beginning January 2020. But pro-choice organizations sued, and courts blocked the law from taking effect pending a U.S. Supreme Court decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization.

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Former Rep. Tom Garrett Announces Campaign for GOP Nomination in House District 56

Former U.S. Representative Tom Garrett has announced his campaign for the GOP nomination in Virginia’s House of Delegates district 56, where he’ll face Jennie Wood, a marketing director and fundraising consultant with experience in the Goochland GOP unit and Senator Mark Peake’s (R-Lynchburg) legislative office.

In 2018, Garrett announced he wouldn’t seek reelection to Congress, citing problems with alcoholism, according to Politico, which reported the congressman and his wife had used official staff for personal errands and chores. At the time, Garrett partially denied the allegations, but said, “there’s one area where I haven’t been honest. The tragedy is that any person Republican, Democrat or independent who’s known me for period of time and has any integrity knows two things: I am a good man and I am an alcoholic.”

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Georgia Republicans Push Their Voters to Early Voting

Georgia Republicans are pushing their supporters to embrace early voting in the December 6 runoff election between Senator Raphael Warnock (D-Georgia) and Herschel Walker. Early voting began Wednesday in DeKalb County, and some other counties will have early voting on Saturday after a Georgia Supreme Court decision, but all counties must offer early voting beginning November 28.

“If you are a conservative you should VOTE EARLY IN PERSON in Georgia. Don’t trust the Election Day madness. Learn from Maricopa and vote early and securely,” Turning Point USA founder Charlie Kirk tweeted Tuesday.

“Absolutely right,” Georgia Republican Party Chair David Shafer responded.

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Miyares Launches ‘One Pill Can Kill’ Campaign Warning of Dangers of Counterfeit Drugs

Attorney General Jason Miyares announced a “One Pill Can Kill” awareness campaign over the risks of fentanyl and counterfeit drugs to try to launch conversations among families ahead of the holidays.

The opioid epidemic has had a devastating effect on our Commonwealth. There isn’t a corner of our state that hasn’t been touched by its pain and destruction. Tragically, overdose deaths are now not limited to addiction, but to counterfeit pills laced with a highly potent, deadly substance – fentanyl,” Miyares said in a press release Tuesday. “Unfortunately, we’ve seen too many young people overdose and die after experimenting with these powerful drugs. As a father, this new threat terrifies me. That’s why I launched ‘One Pill Can Kill,’ a public awareness initiative aimed at generating conversations around the dangers of counterfeit drugs and fentanyl.”

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First Lady Youngkin Presents Spirit of Virginia Award to William King Museum of Art

First Lady Suzanne Youngkin and Governor Glenn Youngkin presented a Spirit of Virginia award to the William King Museum of Art located in Abingdon. An announcement from the First Lady highlighted women leaders at the museum, which aims to provide arts education and preserve the culture of the southwest Virginia and northeast Tennessee region.

“William King Museum of Art serves as a shining example of the positive intersection of art, history, culture, education, rehabilitation, workforce readiness and community engagement,” the First Lady said in a Thursday press release. “I am so proud of the women who shepherd this organization and brighten the lives of Virginians living in Southwest Virginia and beyond.”

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Sen. Warner: Trump Right About Threat from TikTok

Senate Intelligence Chair Mark Warner (D-VA) told Fox News that former President Donald Trump “was right” in his warnings about social media platform TikTok.

“TikTok is a enormous threat,” Warner said. “It’s a threat on two levels.  One, it is a massive collector of information, oftentimes of our children. They can visualize even down to your keystrokes. So if you’re a parent and you’ve got a kid on TikTok, I would be very, very concerned. All of that data that your child is inputting and receiving is being stored somewhere in Beijing.”

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Del. Hudson Announces Primary Challenge Against Sen. Deeds

Delegate Sally Hudson (D-Charlottesville) announced her campaign for Senate District 11 on Monday, pitting her against Senator Creigh Deeds (D-Bath). That sets up a dynamic of a progressive challenger against a more moderate Democrat incumbent that is likely to typify the 2023 Virginia State Senate Democratic primaries, according to CNalysis Executive Director Chaz Nuttycombe.

“The Dems aren’t as united as they were back in the Trump era or even in 2021. So I think the left sees the opportunities they can make this year, especially with redistricting, because if not now, when,” Nuttycombe told The Virginia Star.

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Virginia Second in Nation in Leapfrog Hospital Safety Ranking

Virginia scored second in the Fall 2022 Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade rankings, after scoring second in the Spring 2022 ranking and first in the Fall 2021 ranking.

“Hospitals across Virginia are unique in many ways including where they are located, the communities and patients they serve, and the types of medical care they most commonly provide. But what each hospital has in common is an unparalleled commitment to giving each patient high-quality care in a safe environment,” Chair of the Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association (VHHA) Board of Directors Peter Mulkey said in a press release. “It is an honor to be part of a hospital community that prides itself on achieving exceptional patient care and safety.”

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U.S. Western District Attorney Announces Sentences in Three Cases, Including One Prosecuted by Attorney from Miyares’ Office

U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Virginia Christopher Kavanaugh announced sentences in three separate drug dealing cases on Friday, including a case prosecuted by an attorney cross-designated between the Office of the Attorney General and the U.S. Attorney’s office.

Special Assistant United States Attorney M. Suzanne Kerney-Quillen prosecuted the case against Pedro Loza, who was sentenced to 72 months after he was convicted on charges related to the distribution of methamphetamine as part of an organization that trafficked drugs from Texas and Indiana into Southwest Virginia, according to a joint press release from Miyares and the U.S. Attorney’s office.

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Youngkin Announces Make Virginia Home Plan to Address Housing Shortages

Governor Glenn Youngkin announced a plan to address Virginia housing shortages, including encouraging local cooperation on zoning, simplifying regulations, and placing housing at the center of economic development plans. He told attendees at the Governor’s Housing Conference that the plan is the result of concerns expressed by individual Virginians and roundtable sessions with developers, local leaders, and advocates.

He said, “What we’ve heard from Virginians over and over again is this sense of frustration. They’re tired of searching far and wide for that ‘For Sale’ sign, only to see that it’s out of their reach. They’re deterred by the cost. Virginians are also seriously worried that ongoing inflation and rising interest rates will make the American dream of owning a home not something they can’t have today, but something they may never have.”

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Virginia Board of Education Asks Youngkin Administration to Combine History and Social Sciences Draft with Previous Draft Begun Under Northam

RICHMOND, Virginia – The Virginia Board of Education voted unanimously to delay advancing a November draft of the History and Social Science Standards of Learning until January, and instructed Superintendent of Public Education Jillian Balow to change the draft to include content from an August draft presented to the BOE.…

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Virginia to Get $10.7 Million in Settlement over Google Location Tracking

Virginia is set to receive $10.7 million as part of a $391.5 million multistate settlement with Google over allegations that the tech company misled users about location tracking related to their Google account settings. “It is imperative that companies take customers’ personal data protection seriously and are transparent and direct…

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Special Election to Replace Sen. Kiggans Expected to Be Close

Governor Glenn Youngkin and Senate President Pro Tempore Louise Lucas (D-Portsmouth) have called a January 10 special election for Virginia’s seventh state senate district, filling a vacancy that will be left by Senator Jen Kiggans (R-Virginia Beach) after she takes office as representative of Virginia’s second congressional district.

Local nominations for the race will be made this weekend, with a Republican canvass and a Democratic caucus scheduled for Saturday. Two Democrats have filed for the nomination: former NFL player Aaron Rouse who is a Virginia Beach City Council member, and former Delegate Cheryl Turpin who was the first Virginia Democrat to flip a Trump district in 2017, according to her city council campaign website.  So far, only one Republican has filed for the nomination, Navy veteran Kevin Adams, but candidates can file by 4 p.m. Thursday.

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Virginia Expects $60 Million in Tentative Opioid Crisis Settlement with Walmart

Virginia is expected to receive $60 million as part of a tentative $3.1 billion settlement agreement with Walmart after allegations of insufficient oversight of opioid dispensing at the chain’s pharmacies.

“Companies who facilitated the dispensing of opioids contributed to the opioid epidemic that has devastated millions of lives. This significant settlement will help us fight back against the epidemic and provide abatement and rehabilitation resources to suffering Virginians,” Attorney General Jason Miyares said in a press release.

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Adjusted for Tax Relief, Virginia Revenue Up 8.3 Percent Year-to-Date

Virginia’s tax revenues four months into Fiscal Year 2023 are down 3.1 percent compared to Fiscal Year 2022, although when adjusted for timing and $250 tax rebates sent to Virginians, revenues are up 8.3 percent compared to the previous year, according to a presentation Secretary of Finance Stephen Cummings prepared to share with legislators.

Adjusted for $88 million paid out in October as part of the rebates, Virginia’s October revenues hit a 10.3 percent year-over-year increase, ahead of forecasts.

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Virginia Land Conservation Awards $14.9 Million for 40 Projects

The Virginia Land Conservation Foundation (VCLF) is awarding a record $14.9 million in grants to help protect 13,955 acres in 40 projects across Virginia, according to the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR).

“The board of the Virginia Land Conservation Foundation is excited to make the most of this record funding and focus on significant land conservation efforts that will protect our natural resources,” acting secretary of Natural and Historic Resources Travis Voyles said. “Through these new local parks and recreation areas, Virginians will have more opportunities for outdoor recreation such as public access to waterways, fishing – and even elk viewing or hunting.”

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Kentucky Derby Owner Acquires Colonial Downs, Rosie’s Gaming Emporiums

Churchill Downs Incorporated (CDI), the owner of the Kentucky Derby, acquired the Colonial Downs horse racing venue and Rosie’s Gaming Emporiums as part of a $2.75 billion purchase of most of Peninsula Pacific Entertainment LLC (P2E).

With most of Virginia’s casinos not yet open, the P2E properties are one of the top options for gambling in Virginia. There are six Rosie’s locations in Virginia, with about 2,700 historical horse racing machines (HRM) that provide a slots-like game. As part of the purchase finalized at the beginning of November, CDI acquired rights to open two more HRM facilities: one in Dumfries, and one in Emporia, both scheduled to open in 2023. Virginia law potentially allows for three additional HRM locations.

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VDOE Releases New Draft of History and Social Science Standards

The Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) has published an updated draft of the History and Social Science Standards ahead of a Thursday Board of Education meeting. Beginning in the summer, Governor Glenn Youngkin’s administration called for multiple delays to address technical concerns and to get input from voices that may not have contributed to the document under the previous Democratic administration.

“Every graduate from Virginia’s K-12 schools will possess a robust understanding of the places, people, events and ideas that comprise the history of Virginia, the United States and world civilizations. Our students will learn from the rise and fall of civilizations across time, so that we may pursue and maintain government and economic systems that have led to human achievement. The Virginia standards are grounded in the foundational principles and actions of great individuals who preceded us so that we may learn from them as we strive to maintain our political liberties and personal freedoms and thrive as a nation,” states an introduction to the standards.

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Virginia Passenger Rail Ridership Exceeded Pre-Pandemic Levels in September

Virginia’s Amtrak service ridership hit 105,689 in September, up from the pre-pandemic 76,793 riders in September 2019, for 37.6 percent growth. That’s also an improvement from September 2021 ridership at 50,776.

In a Thursday press release, the Virginia Passenger Rail Authority said “the numbers show the strong rebound in post-pandemic travel with every route seeing an increase.”

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Pacific Legal Foundation Argues Against Thomas Jefferson High School’s Admissions Policy in Video

The Pacific Legal Foundation (PLF) released a new video supporting its legal efforts to fight new admissions policies at Thomas Jefferson (TJ) High School for Science and Technology; the video argues that efforts to change the policy amount to a racist effort to reduce the number of Asian students at the school.

School officials instituted a merit lottery in 2020 to expand the student base to under-represented groups. In response, the Coalition protested the decision, and the PLF began representing the coalition in a drawn-out legal battle aimed at blocking the new policy. A district court agreed with the PLF and said the process was discriminatory, but the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit stayed the lower court’s order, allowing the school to use its new admissions policy for the 2022-2023 school year.

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Virginia Department of Education Announces $12 Million in School Security Equipment Grants

Virginia’s schools will get $12 million from the commonwealth’s School Security Equipment Grant program; the money will go to schools in 90 divisions to help purchase security systems including surveillance cameras, two-way radios, visitor ID badges, security card access systems, and radios for buses.

“The systems and equipment purchased through these grants will help school divisions control access to school buildings, respond quickly to emergencies and maintain orderly learning environments for students,” Superintendent of Public Instruction Jillian Balow said in a Thursday Virginia Department of Education announcement. “Every student and every teacher should feel safe in their classrooms, during school activities and when traveling to and from school. In many cases, the equipment purchased addresses vulnerabilities identified in annual school security audits.”

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Lieutenant Gov. Earle-Sears Won’t Support Trump If He Runs

Lieutenant Governor Winsome Earle-Sears said Thursday that she won’t support Donald Trump in another presidential campaign. She credited Trump for low Black unemployment, funds to historically black colleges and universities, and pressure on NATO members to increase their financial participation in the alliance, but she called for Trump to step aside amid a lack of voter support.

“As a Marine, we’re looking at the mission, and you know, the voters have spoken, and they have said that they want a different leader, and a true leader understands when they have become a liability. A true leader understands that it’s time to step off the stage and the voters have given us that very clear message,” Earle-Sears said in an appearance on Fox Business.

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Report: Virginia Financial Aid Insufficient and Hard to Apply For

Virginia students who graduated from public four-year schools in the 2020-2021 academic year had on average $30,000 in debt, for a total of $357 million in the Commonwealth, the Joint Legislative Audit and Review Commission found in a review of financial aid.

“We found that financial aid has not kept pace with rising costs and students’ declining ability to pay, causing substantial unmet need for students,” JLARC Principal Legislative Analyst Lauren Axselle told commission legislators on Monday.

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Delegate Tim Anderson: Trump Presidential Campaign Would Be ‘Absolute Worst’ for Virginia Republicans

Delegate Tim Anderson (R-Virginia Beach) is calling for his fellow Virginia Republicans to break with Donald Trump after Republicans only flipped one of three competitive Democrat-held congressional districts in Virginia.

“While it appears likely Trump will announce he is running for President – I will not be supporting him,” Anderson said in a Facebook post on Wednesday morning. “While Trump was President, we lost a supermajority in the House of Delegates, a majority in the Senate and in 2019 Democrats controlled all state government for two years — radically changing Virginia. After Trump lost, the GOP gained Delegate seats back and won all three statewide offices. I call this the Trump effect. One thing Trump does very well in Virginia is mobilizing the left to vote against him and anyone who supports him.”

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Kiggans Flips VA-02, Spanberger Holds On in VA-07

State Senator Jen Kiggans (R-Virginia Beach) defeated Representative Elaine Luria (D-VA-02) 51.99 percent to 47.86 percent in preliminary results. Also, Representative Abigail Spanberger (D-VA-07) won her race against Prince William County Supervisor Yesli Vega 51.93 percent to 48.07 percent, and Representative Jennifer Wexton (D-VA-10) defeated Hung Cao 52.95 percent to 47.05 percent in preliminary results, according to the Virginia Public Access Project.

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Virginia Gets $346K in Settlements over 2015 Equifax/T-Mobile Data Breach

Virginia will get $346,085.82 of more than $15 million from multi-state settlements with Experian and T-Mobile after a 2015 data breach of information from the companies’ customers.

“The 2015 data breach affected hundreds of thousands of Virginians, putting their personal information at risk. Companies like T-Mobile and Experian have a responsibility to ensure the safety of consumers’ information, and when they fail, they have to be held accountable,” Attorney General Jason Miyares said in a Monday press release.

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Student Behavioral Problems Top Concern for Virginia Educators

In a survey, Virginia’s school staff rated a rise in student behavior problems the most serious problem they’re facing. The Joint Legislative Audit and Review Commission (JLARC) conducted the survey as part of a study of the impact of COVID-19 on K-12 education.

“The pandemic was an unprecedented disruption for K through 12 students and staff, ” JLARC Chief Legislative Analyst Joe McMahon told a General Assembly committee on Monday. “As students returned to in-person learning, chronic absenteeism, classroom behavior, and reported mental health issues have worsened.”

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Youngkin Makes Final Pitch for Republican Challengers in Virginia

Governor Glenn Youngkin stopped at four rallies supporting five Virginia Republican candidates for Congress on Monday, making a final pitch alongside Lieutenant Governor Winsome Earle-Sears and Attorney General Jason Miyares for continued GOP wins in Virginia begun with Youngkin’s own victory a year ago.

“They said last year that no Republican could win statewide in Virginia. ‘I mean it’s too blue, suburbs are too strong,'” Youngkin said at a morning rally for Karina Lipsman, running for VA-08, and Jim Myles, running for VA-11.

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Poll: Republican Vega Tied with Incumbent Democrat U.S. Rep. Spanberger at 47 Percent Each

Representative Abigail Spanberger (D-VA-07) and Prince William County Supervisor Yesli Vega are tied at 47 percent, according to a poll released Saturday by RRH Elections.

“In #VA07 we found Youngkin very popular (+17) and Biden not (-11). Spanberger leads with those who have already voted; Vega will be relying on strong Election Day turnout. Spanberger leads in Stafford County, Vega in Spotsylvania,” RRH reported on Twitter.

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11,000 Vacancies in Virginia Health Care, with Hospital Contract Labor Costs Up 154 Percent

There are over 11,000 open positions in healthcare in Virginia, and hospitals in the Commonwealth saw their costs for temporary contract labor increase a combined 154 percent between January 1, 2021, and June 30, 2022, the Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association (VHHA) said in an announcement of a new “On Board Virginia” website promoting healthcare employment.

“The past few years have been especially trying for health care providers, with workforce issues and staff burnout among the challenges we have faced,” Centra Health President and CEO Amy Carrier said in the press release. “Having a robust workforce with trained and caring clinicians is pivotal to meet the medical needs of the families and communities we serve, now and in the future. With the launch of On Board Virginia, we are taking action to shore up the health care workforce in the Commonwealth.”

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Richmond Ambulance Authority Donates Ambulance to Ukraine

The Richmond Ambulance Authority (RAA) is donating an ambulance as part of the national U.S. Ambulances for Ukraine program, announced Friday at an event with Senator Mark Warner (D-Virginia) and Virginia Secretary of Health and Human Resources John Littel.

Virginia healthcare providers coordinated by the Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association are also donating medical supplies to Ukraine through the program created by Christopher Manson, Vice President of Government Relations at Illinois-based OSF Healthcare.

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Emails to Youngkin Education Tip Line Include Both Frustration and Praise

After a legal battle, Governor Glenn Youngkin’s administration agreed to release about 350 emails from an education tip line the administration instituted early in the governor’s term. According to media reports, many of the emails were duplicates and some of the emails contain positive feedback about teachers, but others include concerns, including criticism of virtual learning, anger over mask mandates, and concern from one student over a feminist approach to Beowulf.

“A review of the 350 released records shows the majority do not address critical race theory or any other curriculum concern,” The Virginian-Pilot reported.

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Miyares Touts Enforcement in Robocalls Investigation Against Telecoms Providers

Attorney General Jason Miyares announced that the national Anti-Robocall Litigation Task Force is taking enforcement action against two telecoms providers over their alleged involvement in illegal robocalls. The two companies Avid Telecom and One Eye, LLC have stopped cooperating with the task force’s investigation.

“The enforcement action against Avid Telecom details several instances in which the task force believes Avid Telecom knowingly accepted and routed illegal robocalls. Further, the task force believes Avid Telecom’s CEO, Michael Lansky, helped another telecom provider hide its suspect traffic,” Miyares’s release states. “The enforcement action against One Eye details how an individual closed another voice service provider, PZ Telecommunication, LLC, and became the apparent CEO of One Eye. This transition occurred after the Federal Communications Commission sent PZ Telecom a cease-and-desist letter.”

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Youngkin Announces Partnership with HBCU Students to Tutor Students in Hampton Roads and Petersburg

Governor Glenn Youngkin announced a tutoring partnership between four Richmond and Hampton Roads-area historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) to employ their students as tutors and mentors for high school and middle school students. “Sadly last Monday, Virginians woke up to the next of many alarm bells that were ringing…

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Hemp Fiber Company to Build Headquarters in Virginia

Textile technology company FyberX will invest $17.5 million into locating its headquarters in Mecklenberg County. The company develops technology to create textile fiber out of industrial hemp.

That’s a product that Virginia and North Carolina farmers who are seeking new crops are already suited to grow CEO Ben Young told The Virginia Star.

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RPV Wins Injunction Blocking Appointment of Elections Officers in Prince William

A court granted a temporary injunction blocking appointment of over 30 elections officers in Prince William County after the Republican Party of Virginia alleged problems including that some of the officers were self-designated Republicans — not nominated by the RPV.

Additionally in the October filing, the RPV argued that in other precincts, both the chief and assistant chief officers were from the same party. Finally, the RPV said that the county elections board had sought to appoint non-partisan officers in some precincts even though the RPV could provide nominees.

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Virginia NAACP Pays $20,000 for FOIA Request of Records from Miyares’ Election Integrity Unit

The Virginia NAACP says it is paying $20,000 for a FOIA request into Attorney General Jason Miyares’ Unit of Election Integrity. On Monday, the organization issued a press release suggesting that the unit is unnecessary and that the high price for the requested information is meant to protect the unit…

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Site Selection Magazine: Virginia Top State for Business Climate

Site Selection Magazine says Virginia is the top state in its business climate ranking, beating out Georgia, Texas, North Carolina, and Arizona for the top spot. Although the commonwealth only ranked 11th in a survey of executives, one of the indicators in the index, it performed well in the other…

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Miyares, Dominion Energy Tout Potential New Deal over Offshore Wind Project Costs

Dominion Energy, the Office of the Attorney General, and other stakeholders have announced a tentative settlement agreement over how the utility will pay for the Coastal Virginia Offshore Wind (CVOW) Project. The agreement, which still needs approval from the State Corporation Commission, would allow the utility to bill some cost overruns in the project to consumers, but sets a cap along with some protections for the utility’s shareholders who would otherwise bear the burden. Attorney General Jason Miyares said that’s a win for consumers, and the utility said the agreement balances financial impacts.

“I am pleased that we have achieved consumer protections never seen before in modern Virginia history,” Miyares said in a press release. “For the first time Dominion has significant skin in the game to ensure that the project is delivered on budget. Should the project run materially over budget, it will come out of Dominion’s pocket, not consumers’. If approved by the State Corporation Commission [SCC], this agreement provides first-of-its-kind protections for Virginia consumers. A wide range of stakeholders support this agreement. I especially want to thank the Sierra Club and Appalachian Voices for joining, as well as Virginia’s largest private employer, Walmart. This landmark agreement means that Virginia will be a national leader in offshore renewable energy for years to come and most importantly in a fiscally responsible way.”

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