Tommie McNeil

Reporter, Richmond Bureau

Tommie McNeil is a State Capitol reporter who has been covering Virginia and Virginia politics for more than a decade. He originally hails from Maryland, and also doubles as the evening anchor for 1140 WRVA in Richmond.

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General Assembly
4:37 pm
Thu February 26, 2015

Virginia Lawmakers Pass State Budget

No post session per diems, last-minute deals, and burning of the midnight oil this year. While the votes were not unanimous, Senate and House lawmakers have passed a state budget that includes pay raises for state employees, college faculty, state police, and teachers.

House Minority Leader David Toscano argued that law enforcement, school faculty, and other employees are still without the support they need.

"The budget doesn't go far enough, but it is a process and we'll continue to make it---push to make it better, not just this year, but in years ahead."

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General Assembly
4:18 pm
Wed February 25, 2015

Lawmakers Consider Tighter Guidelines on Home Daycare Providers

Recent tragedies where children have died under the care of unlicensed daycare providers have prompted the General Assembly to pass measures to strengthen Virginia’s licensing guidelines.

Delegate Bob Orrock's bill would require licensed home daycare providers to be fingerprinted and undergo a background check. His bill also lowers the requirement for licensure from 6 children to 5. A Senate version leaves it at 6, but counts the provider's own children.  Orrock says some proposals have been far-reaching.

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12 Months & 1 Day
4:24 pm
Fri February 20, 2015

Maureen McDonnell Sentenced

Credit File Photo

Virginia's former First Lady spoke publicly for the first time since both she and her husband were indicted and subsequently convicted on federal corruption charges. Tommie McNeil explains, her testimony not only elicited a tearful reaction from some in the courtroom, but also prompted the judge to give her a better sentencing deal than her husband’s. 

Maureen McDonnell expressed remorse and apologized for "letting the serpent into the mansion"—referring to Jonnie Williams, the businessman whose testimony led to the convictions of both Maureen and former Governor Bob McDonnell.

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General Assembly 2015
8:34 am
Thu February 19, 2015

Lawmakers Crack Down on Cigarette Smuggling

Flickr user Fried Dough
Credit Creative Commons, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

A Republican state senator is trying desperately to crack down on cigarette trafficking from Virginia to the Northeast, which evidence suggests is so profitable that it’s funding terrorist organizations and fuels organized crime. But several members of his own caucus in the House are standing in the way of one bill that’s passed the Senate. 

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General Assembly
4:00 am
Mon February 16, 2015

Reining in Restraints of School Kids

When a special needs child is a bit fussy or has a history of violent outbursts in a classroom setting, who has the right to restrain them or put them into seclusion—and who decides when that goes too far?  In Virginia, that’s not clear.  But  a bill that's sailed through both chambers of the General Assembly will soon change that.

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