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.
Planning a trip to a Virginia state park this year? Check yourself before you wreck yourself — The Department of Conservation and Recreation implemented more than a dozen new regulations that’ll go into effect Oct. 17. Read up!
5 things you need to know today
- Virginia not ready to settle with Purdue Pharma: Several states have settled opioid lawsuits with Purdue Pharma, but not Virginia. Attorney General Mark Herring said in a release that he won’t back down until “it’s in the best interest of Virginians.” Purdue and the Sackler family, he said, “must face real, significant, personal accountability.” -Virginia Mercury
- News organizations sue to allow public to witness executions: News organizations including the Richmond Times-Dispatch are suing the Virginia Department of Corrections to enable citizen and media witnesses to view executions from start to finish. “Some key steps in executions by lethal injection have always been hidden in Virginia. But following a controversial 2017 execution, a state policy change now hides everything except the reading of the death warrant and the inmate’s last words just before the chemicals start to flow,” Frank Green reports. -Richmond Times-Dispatch
- Update on Virginia’s new Student Loan Ombudsman and how he’s doing: Since January, students with college loans have been able to send concerns about confusing rules, ballooning balances and misapplied payments to the federal government to Scott Kemp, the state’s first student loan ombudsman. Kemp has worked on 107 cases in his first nine months. Mechelle Hankerson reports on his progress. -Virginia Mercury
- Shooting victims’ families still waiting on the truth: One hundred sixteen days ago a shooter gunned down 12 people in a Virginia Beach public municipal building. The victims’ families are still waiting for the results of the police investigation into what happened. That means these families still don’t know how their relatives died. -The Virginian-Pilot
- Virginia students fared better on the SAT than anyone else, but participation declined: Virginia students who graduated in the class of 2019 scored, on average, 60 points higher than students nationwide. It’s not all good news, however; the number of Virginia students who took the exam is down from last year, and achievement gaps remain. -The Roanoke Times