General Assembly

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 2015
8:16 am
Wed February 18, 2015

Home School Sports Bill Advances in General Assembly

Flickr user Mack Male
Credit Creative Commons, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Some Virginia students who are home-schooled may be able to participate in public school interscholastic programs under legislation that has passed both houses of the General Assembly.  Lawmakers also sought to alleviate some concerns raised by school divisions.  

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General Assembly
7:59 am
Wed February 18, 2015

Exotic Weapons Ban Debated in General Assembly

Ballistic Knife

In Richmond, lawmakers are taking action to overturn a longstanding ban on selling blackjacks, brass knuckles, throwing stars and ballistic knives. 

Opponents of the effort say the law was originally created to undermine gang activity in Virginia, and they wonder who would want such exotic weapons.

"This bill is straight out of a Victorian crime novel."

That's Arlington Delegate Alfonso Lopez, a Democrat, who was one of the 42 votes against the bill.

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General Assembly 2015
8:38 am
Tue February 17, 2015

Senate Debates Junk Food in School Fundraisers

Flickr user Salim Virji
Credit Creative Commons, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Virginia schools could hold numerous fundraisers per year selling food that doesn’t meet nutritional guidelines under legislation that has passed both houses of the General Assembly.  The bill requires the Board of Education to craft regulations that would be more permissive than current state policy, and permit the sale of what some call “junk food” during school hours.  The Senate made its decision only after lengthy debate about what’s really best for the students. 

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General Assembly
4:35 pm
Mon February 16, 2015

Parents Call on Lawmakers for Access to Autism Treatment

Kate, Matthew & Wesley Fletcher

One of every 68 children in this country has now been diagnosed with some degree of autism – a disability that makes it difficult for them to communicate and learn.  Virginia requires insurance companies to pay for an intensive treatment called Applied Behavior Analysis until the age of seven, but parents say care should be available for as long as a child needs it, and a bill making its way through the legislature could lift the age limit.

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