Welcome to today’s edition of the Dogwood Daily. We’ve got a round-up of all the Virginia news that’s been happening coming right up.
The royal baby is finally here. Britain’s Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, the Duchess of Sussex, welcomed a baby boy into the world on Monday morning. They’ve yet to choose a name, so feel free to send us any suggestions. We’ll do our best to pass them along.
Top 5 things you need to know today…
1.Trump ratchets up trade war with China — In a move that could have grave consequences for the American economy, President Trump ratcheted up tensions with China, threatening to increase tariffs from 10% to 25% on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods. He also said he’d add a new 25% fee on all remaining Chinese imports “shortly” thereafter. American markets plunged in response on Monday, before recovering some of their losses. An extended trade war could have dire consequences for many in Virginia, especially farmers.
2. Amazon says HQ2 won’t worsen housing problems in Arlington — In an attempt to reassure some concerned locals, Amazon said its second headquarters in Arlington won’t aggravate housing issues in Arlington as much as it did in Seattle because the company will be able to plan for growth. This comes on the heels of the release of emails and text messages that show Arlington County officials made every effort to smooth the path Amazon’s arrival in Northern Virginia.
3. Virginia AG tries to block Dominion from customers $247 million for upgrades — The Virginia Attorney General’s office is trying to prevent Dominion Energy from charging customers $247 million to recover money spent on environmental upgrades at its Chesterfield County power plant. Dominion said in December that the upgrades to four coal-burning energy units were needed to meet federal and state regulations. But the AG’s office says Dominion knew, or should have known, that these units would need upgrades and saved accordingly, instead of trying to charge customers for something that will “provide little or no value” to them.
4. Northam to hire equity, diversity and inclusion officer — Gov. Ralph Northam’s administration is looking to hire the state’s first “chief equity, diversity and inclusion officer” to aid the Governor through the rest of his term. Whoever fills the role will be expected to promote inclusive practices across the state government and help Northam determine the best ways to tackle racial inequity in the Commonwealth.
5. Virginia Congressional Democrats push to double Metro funding — Three members of Virginia’s Democratic delegation in Congress are pushing to extend and double the Metro’s federal subsidy, from $150 million to $300 million a year, on the condition that the agency strengthen its the Inspector General office and meet performance goals. The bill’s lead sponsor is Rep. Gerald E. Connolly (D-Va), and Rep. Don Beyer (D-Va) and Rep. Jennifer Wexton (D-Va) are also co-sponsoring the legislation, along with six other representatives from the D.C. region.