State Government

It's been two years in the making, but now a public-private partnership between the Virginia Department of Health and Ancestry has allowed the state to digitize the Commonwealth’s vital records-including some that were believed to be lost forever.

State leaders say this is huge: more than 16-million death, birth, and marriage certificates - as well as divorce decrees - have been scanned and digitized and can now be accessed for genealogy and family history research.

Governor McAuliffe has accelerated the timetable set in a 2007 state law that requires a voluntary 10% reduction in state energy consumption—by moving its target date to 2020. 

Now an expert panel established to help achieve that goal has concluded that it needs additional data just to clarify how that should be measured.  It also says the responsibility does not just rest with electric utilities to boost their own conservation efforts.

The Strengths and Challenges of Virginia's State Parks

May 26, 2015

Virginia's Secretary of Natural Resources, Molly Ward, recently finished visiting all 36 state parks as part of a fact-finding tour.

FOIA Bills Examined

May 20, 2015

A number of changes are in the works for Virginia’s open-government laws.  For instance, the General Assembly passed more than a dozen bills earlier this year that would amend the Freedom of Information Act. Other controversial bills were referred to a state advisory council to be studied—and potentially reintroduced in next year's session.

Creative Commons

Hampton Roads has twice the relative sea-level rise of other Atlantic coastal communities, and Virginia is stepping up its efforts to address the associated recurrent flooding. While the General Assembly recently ordered updates to the state’s flood protection plan, the Army Corps of Engineers has rolled out a new, proactive strategic framework. It calls on local, state, regional, and federal governments to work together—due to the enormity of the tasks ahead.