Va. watchdog group blasts assembly’s murky practices

Transparency Virginia, a nonprofit, nonpartisan legislative watchdog group, released a report Tuesday highlighting “murky practices” and “disturbing” findings from the 2015 General Assembly session with regard to unrecorded votes and short notices for committee meetings.

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Marijuana OK’d For Epilepsy Treatment in Va.

Two types of medical marijuana extracts would be legal to possess and recommend for epilepsy treatment in Virginia under legislation passed by the state Senate on Wednesday and sent to the governor for his signature. The Senate voted 37-1 in favor of HB 1445, which would allow Virginians suffering from epileptic seizures relief in the…

More Crimes May Trigger DNA Collection

RICHMOND – “Hannah Graham would be alive today if Delegate Bell’s law had been passed 10 years ago. She would be alive and be a happy, successful student at the University of Virginia today.” In a tense, late-night committee meeting, Delegate Jackson Miller, R-Manassas, used that frank invocation of a still-fresh wound to sway his colleagues…

RICHMOND – Virginia could see a surge in charter schools in coming years as a proposed constitutional amendment begins the long journey toward passage. On a 21-17 vote, the Virginia Senate approved a joint resolution that would amend the Constitution of Virginia to allow the state Board of Education to establish such semi-autonomous specialty schools.

Don’t start school before Labor Day, group says

Virginia schools should not be allowed to start classes before Labor Day, a coalition of state legislators and tourism officials said Wednesday. They voiced support for the current law requiring schools to begin after Labor Day, the traditional end of the tourism season, unless they get permission from the state.

Bill denying in-state tuition to ‘DREAM-er’ college students fails

The Virginia Senate this week narrowly defeated a bill to deny in-state tuition to so-called “DREAM-ers” – young adults who immigrated illegally to the U.S. as children. Senate Bill 722 failed by a vote of 19-20 after Republican Sen. John Watkins of Midlothian joined with the 19 Democratic senators in opposing the measure.

House Kills Bill to Legalize Selling Switchblades

RICHMOND – Any Virginians using this week’s snow days to start planning a “Warriors”-style gang – complete with throwing stars and switchblades – must now put the jean jacket back in the closet and go back to the drawing board.