Welcome to today’s edition of the Dogwood Daily. We’ve got a round-up of all of today’s Virginia news coming right up. And if you’re a fan, please forward to three friends who need to know what’s going on in the Commonwealth and tell them to subscribe here.
Two former Virginian-Pilot staffers have teamed up to launch The Virginia Center for Investigative Journalism, an independent, nonprofit newsroom. The news is a welcome announcement in a state that has lost 28 newspapers since 2004.
5 Things you need to know today
- Trump to speak at Jamestown on Tuesday; some Democrats to boycott – The White House confirmed that President Trump will deliver a speech before the General Assembly at Jamestown on Tuesday as part of a celebration of the 400th anniversary of representative government in the United States. Several Democrats have said they will boycott the event because of Trump’s divisive policies and racist statements. – The Washington Post
- Opposition grows to Dominion’s “unjustified and unreasonable” push for profits – The Virginia Poverty Law Center, federal and state agencies, and Walmart have joined together to speak out against Dominion Energy’s proposal to increase the profits its shareholders can earn. Dominion has asked the State Corporation Commission to increase its permitted return on equity from 9.2% to 10.75%, as part of its capital expenditure plan. The U.S. Navy has called the proposal “excessive and unwarranted,” while the VPLC called it “unjustified and unreasonable.” If Dominion’s request were approved, it could cause customers to pay roughly $30 more per month by the end of 2023. – The Virginia Mercury
- Advocates push for Virginia to enact mandatory paid sick leave – The Virginia Interfaith Center for Public Policy, a Richmond-based nonprofit, is pushing lawmakers to pass legislation that would provide five paid sick days to full-time employees, while exempting employers with five or fewer employees. An estimated 1.2 million Virginia workers do not have access to paid sick days, according to a 2015 estimate by the Institute for Women’s Policy Research. The Interfaith Center is working with state Sen. Barbara Favola (D-Fairfax), and Del. Lashrecse Aird (D-Petersburg) on the bill. – The Virginia Mercury
- Sen. Warner demands that VA accelerate construction of clinics in Fredericksburg and Hampton Roads – Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) wrote a letter to the leaders of the Department of Veteran Affairs and General Service Administration demanding an expedited timeline on two proposed veterans clinics in Fredericksburg and Hampton Roads. Warner was frustrated by the “glacial pace” of the projects, which the VA and GSA indicated may not be complete until 2023. – The Free-Lance Star
- Republican committee members try to censure colleague for officiating a gay wedding – A handful of members of Virginia’s 5th congressional district Republican Committee tried to censure Rep. Denver Riggleman (R-Va.) because he officiated a same-sex marriage earlier this month. The effort failed, as only four members voted in favor of censuring Riggleman, but the effort highlights the GOP’s internal division on the issue of same-sex marriage. – The Roanoke-Times
From the Gram