McDonnell’s son arrested for DUI in Va. Beach

Robert Ryan McDonnell

Robert Ryan McDonnell

Virginia Beach police say one of former Gov. Bob McDonnell’s sons has been arrested for driving under the influence. Police say 23-year-old Robert Ryan McDonnell was arrested in the Sandbridge section of Virginia Beach early Thursday morning. Police say he refused a breath test and is not currently in custody. Police say Ryan McDonnell lives in Glen Allen, a suburb of Richmond. Last year, McDonnell’s other son, Sean McDonnell, was found guilty of public intoxication in Charlottesville near the University of Virginia.

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Va. shortens process for felons to seek rights restoration

STATE-NEWSRICHMOND, Va. (AP) _ Virginia is taking additional steps to make it easier for convicted felons to regain their voting rights. Gov. Terry McAuliffe announced policy changes Thursday that will shorten the application process for people convicted of more serious crimes. The changes include eliminating notarization, letters to the governor and other requirements. The application was reduced from 13 pages to one. In April, McAuliffe reduced the waiting period for violent felons to apply for restoration of rights from five years to three. He also removed drug offenses from a list of violent crimes that are subject to the waiting period. McAuliffe says more than 5,100 ex-offenders have regained voting rights this year.  The Virginia Department of Elections says 71 percent of Virginians who regained their voting rights this year have registered to vote.

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McAuliffe Announces New Jobs, Meat Processing Facility for Lynchburg

WLNI---local-business-2From Governor Terry McAuliffe’s office: – Governor McAuliffe announced today that Seven Hills Food, LLC will revitalize and open a meat processing facility in the City of Lynchburg.  The company, a locally-sourced meat processing operation, will invest $3 million and create 43 new jobs in Lynchburg, while committing to purchase 100 percent Virginia-grown beef and pork.  The Commonwealth of Virginia is partnering with the City of Lynchburg and Seven Hills Food on this project through the Governor’s Agriculture and Forestry Industries Development (AFID) Fund. Speaking about today’s announcement, Governor McAuliffe said, “I am pleased to announce Seven Hills Foods’ new investment in Lynchburg, which creates new jobs and provides an important new market for agricultural producers across the state.  It also allows a long-shuttered meat processing facility to come back to life, generating additional tax dollars for Lynchburg and new revenue streams for the region.  Indeed, this operation and its statewide impact represent the type of investments we continue to leverage to build the New Virginia Economy and capitalize on the significant economic impact that Virginia agriculture has throughout the Commonwealth.”

(Continue reading for the rest of the news release.)

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Va. lawmaker to resign, then seek seat in special election

Joseph Morrissey

Joseph Morrissey

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) _ A Virginia Democratic state lawmaker is resigning from office after recently entering a plea in connection with accusations that he had an improper sexual relationship with a teenager. Del. Joseph D. Morrissey sent a letter Thursday to the House speaker saying he will resign, effective Jan. 13. Morrissey entered the Alford plea last week in Henrico County Circuit Court on a misdemeanor count of contributing to the delinquency of a minor. In an Alford plea, a defendant acknowledges there is sufficient evidence for a conviction but doesn’t admit guilt. According to prosecutors, the 57-year-old Morrissey and a 17-year-old girl who worked for him had sex multiple times at his law office in August 2013 and texted their friends about it.

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Another bitter Medicaid battle looms in Richmond

STATE-NEWSGovernor McAuliffe will once again attempt to tie Medicaid expansion to the state budget, setting the stage for another likely bitter and partisan General Assembly session. Last year’s battle nearly shut down state government until Republicans regained control of the Senate. WLNI’s Evan Jones has the story.

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Gifts to governor toned down under McAuliffe

Gov. Terry McAuliffe

Gov. Terry McAuliffe

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) _ Gov. Terry McAuliffe says he has not received any big-ticket gifts since taking office this year, a notable departure from what was commonplace under past administrations. A list of gifts received by McAuliffe was included in the governor’s recently filed statement of economic interest. The list shows the governor accepted mostly trinkets related to trade missions. The statement says he didn’t receive access to vacation homes or tickets to sporting events that were frequently given to previous Virginia governors. McAuliffe instituted a $100 gift limit shortly after taking office. He said it was part of an effort to clean up Virginia’ reputation. McAuliffe’s predecessor, former Gov. Bob McDonnell, was found guilty in September of illegally accepting more than $165,000 in gifts and loans in exchange for promoting dietary supplements.

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