State Government

Government & Politics
4:57 pm
Wed February 12, 2014

General Assembly Update

Virginia House Speaker Bill Howell and other GOP members of that chamber are characterizing the first half of the General Assembly session as a success.

Howell says many of their key initiatives have passed, and they worked well with Democrats. But when asked if the House will work with the Senate on passing Medicaid expansion, GOP leaders still say they just don't see that happening.

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Snow Storm Preparations
8:46 am
Wed February 12, 2014

State of Emergency: What Does It Mean?

The season’s first major snow storm is well on its way and as a result, Governor Terry McAuliffe has declared a state of emergency. 

A state of emergency means that state agencies are at the ready to assist local governments, and provide a quick response wherever and whenever they are needed in the state.

State agencies include the Virginia Department of Emergency Management, the Department of Transportation and the Virginia National Guard, just to name a few. It also means electric, phone and cable utility companies are standing by to assist with any and all outages.

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Government & Politics
8:35 am
Wed February 12, 2014

Virginia Lawmakers Tackle Debt Ceiling Issue

Credit www.patriotstatesman.com

Virginia lawmakers voted largely along party lines on the deal to raise the nation's debt ceiling. 

Conservatives are upset that House Speaker John Boehner moved a bill to raise the debt ceiling that didn’t include any Republican policy priorities.

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Lieutenant Governor as Tie-Breaker
4:43 pm
Tue February 11, 2014

VA Senate Votes Down Ultrasound Mandate

The Virginia Senate has approved legislation to repeal the state law passed two years ago that requires women to have an ultrasound before undergoing an abortion.  The measure was initially defeated—then in a dramatic reversal, was revived.

Bill sponsor Senator Mamie Locke said ultrasounds may not be medical necessary, and those that are can be performed without this law.

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General Assembly
8:43 am
Tue February 11, 2014

Mental Health Custody Issue Moves Forward

Sen. Creigh Deeds

A person in a mental health crisis may be kept in custody for evaluation for up to 24 hours under legislation that has cleared the Virginia Senate. 

The new, 24-hour limit passed over the objections of some in the law enforcement community, who worried that such a lengthy period may divert deputy sheriffs who are detaining the patient from other public safety priorities.

But the bill passed unanimously after an impassioned plea from the Senator who was most recently impacted by flaws in the state’s mental health system.

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