CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) _ The University of Virginia’s president says she has asked Charlottesville police to investigate allegations that a female student was raped by several men at a fraternity house. President Teresa A. Sullivan announced the investigation in a statement posted Wednesday evening on the university’s website. She says she issued it in response to a Rolling Stone article in which a student describes an assault by seven men in September 2012. Sullivan says the article includes details that weren’t disclosed to university officials previously. The article says U.Va. administrators and students keep sexual assaults at the school quiet. Sullivan says the university takes sexual misconduct seriously. Charlottesville police Lt. Steve Upman tells The Daily Progress that the investigation is in in the preliminary stages. He declined to comment further.
Campbell County is working on real estate reassessments. The Board of Supervisors has discussed the possibility of changing to a three-year or two-year cycle but recently approved keeping the reassessment cycle at four years. The process updating county records of all taxable real estate property to current fair market value began in 2013 with the mailing of nearly 18-thousand residential questionnaires. Once property owners receive their reassessments in mid-January they’ll have the opportunity to contest the values in office hearings through March.
CVCC is adding raised crosswalks and a concrete island to slow down traffic and make it safer for students to cross the road. The contractor will be performing the final phase of construction to the intersection of Wards Road and Harvard Street next week. During this time, CVCC will be installing traffic calming measures on Harvard Street. CVCC traffic will have to enter from Wards Road and travel through a student parking lot to reach campus. The work is expected to take approximately 60 days.
Dominion Virginia Power customers are concerned that their power bills could increase in the next ten years. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has proposed rules cutting carbon emissions from existing power plants in an effort to provide affordable energy. The No. 1 question the nearly 600,000 member-customers of the state’s 13 electric cooperatives have? Is the cost impact for complying with the proposal. Some experts say customers could see their electricity bills go up as much as 30 percent by 2025. But the EPA says the proposal is a clean energy job creation bill likely generating 62,500 jobs in the Commonwealth.
Congressman Bob Goodlatte is likely to take on an increasing national role at the forefront of the immigration debate, now that President Obama plans to announce executive action tonight expected to shield millions of illegal immigrants from deportation. Goodlatte chairs the House Judiciary Committee, which oversees immigration laws. WLNI’s Evan Jones has the story.
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) _ Federal prosecutors in Virginia collected more than $27.8 million in criminal and civil fines and penalties in the last fiscal year. The numbers were reported Wednesday by the U.S. attorney’s offices in the eastern and western districts of the state. U.S. Attorney Dana Boente (BEN’-tay) said the eastern district collected more than $23.6 million, including more than $15.4 million in criminal actions. In the western district, U.S. Attorney Timothy J. Heaphy said more than $4.2 million was collected. About three-fourths of that came in criminal cases.U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder aid the Justice Department collected $24.7 billion nationally in the 2014 fiscal year that ended Sept. 30.
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) _ State lawmakers are expressing concerns that proposed federal regulations to cut carbon emissions will hurt Virginia’s economic competiveness. The Senate and House held a joint committee meeting Wednesday to hear from state officials, energy companies and environmentalists on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan. Lawmakers said it was unfair the targets set by the EPA do not give greater weight to Virginia’s robust nuclear energy production, which do not produce carbon dioxide emissions. They said the current target rate of carbon emission by energy production set by the EPA for Virginia is unfair in light of the higher target rates for neighboring states. Democratic Gov. Terry McAuliffe expressed similar concerns last week, though he said supports the EPA plan’s goals of lower emissions.
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) _ The Virginia Department of Transportation is lifting lane closures during the Thanksgiving holiday period. VDOT will end the closures on most interstates and other roads starting from noon Wednesday through noon Monday. The idea is to keep the highways obstruction free during the busy holiday travel period. VDOT also advises that based on past traffic data, the heaviest periods of congestion on most roads occur after noon on Wednesday and after noon on both weekend days. Officials are encouraging Virginians to plan for a safe trip by avoiding distractions, wearing your seat belt, obeying the speed limit and being courteous to other travelers.
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) _ Several groups, businesses and state leaders are kicking off efforts to prevent drunken driving this holiday season. Mothers Against Drunk Driving, Nationwide Insurance and AAA Mid-Atlantic will be joined Thursday by Attorney General Mark Herring and Virginia State Police Superintendent Col. Steven Flaherty to discuss the issue. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, more than 1,0 people were killed in drunken driving crashes nationwide between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Eve in 2012 _ the most recent year for national data. New Year’s Day is the deadliest day of the year for drunken driving on roadways. A total of 140 people were killed by drunken driving crashes during the holiday that year. Officials remind Virginians to have a designated driver if they’re planning to drink during the holiday season.