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.
Go, Meteor, go! Meteor, the yak who escaped en route to the slaughterhouse, continues to evade capture in the Virginia mountains.
5 things you need to know today
- Virginia Democrats lead Republicans in cash reserves
With 48 days remaining in the race for control of the General Assembly, Virginia Democrats lead Republicans in total fundraising numbers, but it’s close. State and national donors are going all-in on the Nov. 5, 2019, elections, when all 140 General Assembly seats up for grabs and the House and Senate majorities are on the line. Democratic candidates for the House of Delegates reported $8.6 million in cash versus Republican House candidates’ $7.7 million. In the Senate race, however, the Republicans $5.3 million in cash reserves bests the Democrats’ $5 million. -The Washington Post
- Election officials urge overseas voters to send ballots back early
Election officials are urging overseas voters, including deployed service members, to send their absentee ballots back early in case the U.S. leaves the Universal Postal Union. President Trump has signaled the U.S. may withdraw from the union, which is a part of the United Nations, when it meets next week in Switzerland. Although overseas absentee voters have until Oct. 29 to request a ballot, the U.S. may stop receiving international mail on Oct. 17 if the Trump administration chooses to exit the union. -Virginia Mercury
- Northam shares green energy goals
Governor Ralph Northam announced that he wants Virginia’s electric grid to be entirely carbon-free by 2050. Northam outlined the plan in an executive order laying out goals for statewide energy production in the near future. Amongst the most pressing of his goals is a push for 3,000 megawatts of solar and onshore wind by 2022, and a call for state agencies to reduce electric consumption by 10%. The order “meets the urgency of the challenges brought on by climate change,” Northam said in a statement. -Richmond Times-Dispatch
- September amongst hottest ever in Roanoke
This start of September is amongst the hottest on record in the Roanoke region. The average temperature in the area for the first 15 days of the month was 76.9 degrees, the warmest since 1961. In Blacksburg, it was the hottest first half of September dating to 1952 when the town first started taking records. The warm weather continues the upward trend in recent years, with two of the last three Septembers, 2016 and 2018, ranking amongst Roanoke’s 10th hottest on record. -The Roanoke Times
- New mental health hospital in Norfolk
Governor Northam and Mental health officials broke ground to signify the start of construction on a $224 million mental hospital being built to serve children and teenagers in Norfolk. The facility located near the Children’s Hospital of The King’s Daughters will help children living with conditions including eating disorders, autism, anxiety, and depression. CHKD reported that it has seen a 300% increase in the number of therapy and mental health visits in recent years. Officials say the facility will allow them to admit 2,500 patients annually and serve 5,600 a year through outpatient treatment. -Virginia Mercury
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