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.
College football season is here and if you’re going to a UVA game, make sure to check out this video from alumni and community members (including Tina Fey!) imploring attendees not to participate in any homophobic chants at games.
5 things you need to know today
- Virginia amends Purdue Pharma lawsuit to include allegations against Sacklers – Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring announced Wednesday that the state has amended its 2018 lawsuit against Purdue Pharma, adding language accusing the Sackler family of continuing to promote the company’s drugs despite knowledge that they were “dangerous, deadly and addictive.” The lawsuit also alleges the Sackler family illegally transferred billions of dollars to shield their assets. – The Washington Post
- George Mason fights to keep donor records private – The Virginia Supreme Court heard oral arguments on Wednesday on whether foundations established by public universities should be subject to freedom of information laws. The case comes from George Mason University, where a student organization called Transparent GMU sued to access university records of agreements with private donors. Transparent GMU is hoping the Court will reverse a circuit court judge’s earlier ruling that George Mason has the right to keep such records private. Transparent GMU filed the suit after an AP report revealed that the school received a $50 million donation specifically to “promote the conservative principles of governance.” – Virginia Mercury
- Culpeper County solar farm proposal withdrawn – Cricket solar has called off its plans to install 380,000 solar panels in Culpeper County after pushback from the community. Some residents and historians opposed the project, saying that the land Cricket was planning to install the panels on was too historically valuable. Cricket said it had been working to protect valued wetlands and address the community’s concerns, but ultimately decided a withdrawal was “necessary.” The company has yet to decide if it will return with an updated proposal. – The Free Lance-Star
- Virginia to add railway tracks between Richmond and D.C. – The federal government approved Virginia’s plan to add additional train tracks between Washington D.C. and Richmond. The director of Virginia’s Department of Rail and Public Transportation said the project is fully funded and should increase the number of seats available for commuters, improve reliability and see a slight increase in train speeds in the future. Despite this progress, the more significant obstacle of expanding Long Bridge from two tracks to four tracks remains, as that project is still in the environmental review stage. – WAMU 88.5
- Catawba Hospital to add 56 beds for mental health patients – Virginia’s mental health agency will add 56 beds to Roanoke County-based Catawba Hospital. The Virginia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services is increasing the number of beds as a response to increased demand placed on the public psychiatric hospital by a law requiring that they turn away no one in need. – The Roanoke Times
From the Gram