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Economics & Economy
7:58 am
Wed February 19, 2014

What Does the Future Hold for the New River Valley?

Credit Photo by Ivan Morozov.

What will it be like to live in the New River Valley over the next twenty years?

Well, that depends on what happens now that a 3 year study on livability in the NRV is complete and ready to be acted upon.  

More than 3,000 people from all over the New River Valley weighed in on which issues they’re most concerned about for the future of this region; including housing, transportation, energy, environment, and cultural assets which define this part of south western Virginia. 

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VA Mental Health System
7:40 am
Wed February 19, 2014

Mental Health Report Addresses Accountability

There’s new information on the state of the mental health system in Virginia.

A new report issued by the state’s inspector general reveals that Virginia is spending millions of dollars annually to house mental health patients who no longer qualify or need state care. 

According to the latest report by the Office of the State Inspector General, there are mental health patients occupying beds that could otherwise be used by people requiring emergency or long-term psychiatric care.

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Small Farms
5:26 pm
Tue February 18, 2014

Legislation Eases Agritourism Obstacles

If Governor McAuliffe agrees, small farmers could operate agritourism activities under less restrictive regulations … thanks to legislation that has now passed both houses of the General Assembly.  The new law would prohibit local governments from requiring special-use permits and imposing stringent noise regulations unless there’s a substantial impact on public welfare or safety. 

While small farmers embraced this bill, they did not get everything they wanted during the legislative session.

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Thomas Jefferson & His Slaves
5:02 pm
Mon February 17, 2014

Master of the Mountain

It’s been over a year since the publication of a new book about Thomas Jefferson and his slaves.  It won rave reviews from many parts of the country, but in Charlottesville the author is still attacked in certain circles. 

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Gathering & Storing Personal Data
4:21 pm
Mon February 17, 2014

Personal Privacy Protection Caucus

License Plate Reader

A bipartisan group of state senators and delegates has formed the General Assembly’s first-ever “Personal, Privacy Protection Caucus” of lawmakers. 

Their goal is to refine the law to prevent state and local governments from large-scale gathering and storage of personal data—especially if it takes place without individual warrants. 

The members say they're also trying to strike the right balance between public safety and Fourth Amendment protections.

The caucus plans to hold hearings and consult law enforcement this year to craft new legislation.

 

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