FARMVILLE, Va. (AP) _ Virginia’s Longwood University will host the 2016 vice-presidential debate. The Commission on Presidential Debates announced Wednesday that the sole vice-presidential debate will be held Oct. 4, 2016, at the small public school in Farmville, which is in central Virginia. School president W. Taylor Reveley IV said Longwood’s selection was a “proud juncture” for the university, which was founded in 1839. The school said its efforts to host the debate received strong support from Gov. Terry McAuliffe and Virginia’s congressional delegation. Other Virginia schools have hosted similar events. The University of Richmond hosted a presidential debate in 1992 and the College of William and Mary hosted one in 1976.
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) _ Gov. Terry McAuliffe says the state has received a $300,0 federal grant to help implement his administration’s energy goals. One of those goals is to lower energy consumption in Virginia by 10 percent in 2020. The U.S. Department of Energy awarded the grant to the Virginia Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy. The money will provide additional expert support for the work of a 12-member panel the governor appointed in May to work toward achieving the energy reduction goal.
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) _ Attorney General Mark Herring says Virginia has joined a seven-state task force to combat heroin distribution and overdose deaths. The other states in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic Heroin Task Force are New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Maryland, and Maine. Herring says that by sharing information and collaborating on leads, authorities in the participating states will be better equipped to dismantle large-scale drug operations that are trying to profit off of addiction. According to the attorney general, Virginia’s geographic location and makeup of large cities, ports, and busy highways and transportation hubs make it vulnerable to drug trafficking.
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) _ A federal court has appointed a special expert to assist it in redrawing Virginia’s congressional boundaries. Judge Albert Diaz of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said in a court filing Wednesday that a judicial panel has selected Dr. Bernard Grofman, an economics and political science professor at the University of California, Irvine. In June, the panel concluded for a second time that legislators in 2012 illegally packed black voters into one district in order to make adjacent districts safer for Republican incumbents. The three-judge panel ordered the General Assembly to redraw new maps by Sept. 1, but lawmakers balked and the court is going to redraw the boundaries itself.
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) _ The Virginia Court of Appeals has dismissed prosecutors’ efforts to retry a felony case against a former Virginia state lawmaker who pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor in a sex scandal involving a teenager. The court upheld Tuesday an earlier dismissal of four felony counts accusing ex-Virginia Del. Joseph D. Morrissey of fabricating court documents. The appeals court said it lacked the authority to review the immunity provisions that were part of the plea deal Morrissey signed in December. A Henrico County judge also dismissed perjury charges in June against the mother of the young woman. Morrissey, who fathered a child with the young woman and said he intends to marry her, recently dropped out of a state Senate contest for health reasons.
Here’s the news release from the department: The Lynchburg Police Department has been awarded $205,486 to assist us with the purchasing and implementation of a body worn camera system. This grant will require a $213,692 match for a total of $419,178. Though these funds have been awarded by the Office of Justice Programs/Department of Justice they still need to be accepted which will require City Council action. It is slated to be brought to Council on Tuesday, October 27th. If this award is accepted it will assist the Lynchburg Police Department with the purchase of 175 camera systems, mounting kits, docking stations, assurance program and storage fees. This will allow for every Lynchburg Police Department officer to be assigned a body-worn camera.
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) _ A panel formed after the violent arrest of a student by Virginia’s liquor agency has declined to recommend stripping the agency of its arrest powers. Gov. Terry McAuliffe appointed the panel after a March arrest by Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control agents left a college student bloodied. Video and photos of University of Virginia student Martese Johnson were widely distributed on social media. Johnson, who is black, could be heard on the video calling the officers racist. Charges against him were dropped. One of the issues considered by McAuliffe’s panel was whether ABC’s law enforcement powers should be shifted to state or local police. In its report issued Tuesday, the panel said “the public safety of Virginia is best served by Virginia ABC.” However, the panel recommended that the agency emphasize regulatory activities over law enforcement.
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) _ Forty-five local tourism initiatives will share more than $796,000 in state matching grants. Gov. Terry McAuliffe announced the funding from the Virginia Tourism Corporation’s Marketing Leverage Program on Monday. The local organizations match the state grant funds by a minimum of two to one. The governor’s office says the result will be more than $3.3 million in new marketing to increase visitation to Virginia. Grant amounts range from $1,700 for the Southwest Virginia Lavender Trail to $50,000 for six programs: The Half-Mile of Mayhem at Martinsville Speedway, The Lynchburg Regional Convention and Visitors Bureau Website Development, Wytheville … There’s Only One, New Ways to Market America’s Historic Triangle, Millennial Marketing Campaign in Abingdon and Mercy Street in Alexandria.
LEXINGTON, Va. (AP) _ Virginia Military Institute says a cadet died after he collapsed during routine physical training. The Lexington school says the first-year cadet collapsed on Monday afternoon. He was treated at the scene by emergency medical technicians and taken to the VMI Infirmary. He then was taken to Stonewall Jackson Hospital in Lexington, where he was pronounced dead shortly after 6 p.m. Monday. The cadet’s name hasn’t been released, pending notification of family members. VMI says in statement posted on its website that the cadet’s death is under investigation.
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) _ Two Powerball tickets bought in Virginia each have won $2 million. The Virginia Lottery says each ticket matched the first five numbers but missed the Powerball number in Saturday’s drawing. Each ticket’s $1 million prize was doubled because the purchasers paid an extra dollar for Power Play. The winning numbers were 12-17-26-43-48 and the Powerball number was 24. One ticket was bought at Mick or Mack IGA in New Castle. The other ticket was bought at a Wawa store in Virginia Beach. Each store will receive a $10,000 bonus from the Virginia Lottery. No ticket sold for Saturday’s drawing matched all six numbers. The Lottery says the Powerball jackpot will grow to an estimated $235 million for Wednesday’s drawing.