Dogwood Daily: New budget, who this?
By Matt Blair
February 21, 2020

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.

But first…

I’m dreaming of a white… February. The Richmond Times-Dispatch has some great photos of Virginians out and about enjoying the snowy weather.

Five things you need to know today …

  1. New budget, who this?— House and Senate Democrats voted to adopt new budgets on Thursday. They roll back some policies implemented by Republicans and focus instead on Democratic priorities, like funding education, public employee compensation, transportation, and climate change. Both chambers voted to approve both the two-year budget beginning July 1 and to revise the current budget ending June 30. The House and Senate will now begin negotiations to iron out the difference between their proposals. -Richmond Times-Dispatch
  2. Science wins the day— Score one for common sense. Last week, the House approved legislation that would bring Virginia’s immunization requirements up to speed with federal guidelines. GOP lawmakers repeatedly blocked efforts to include vaccines recommended by the CDC, including hepatitis A and meningitis. House Republicans voted against the measure despite it being backed by virtually every professional medical group in the state. The bill is now making its way through the Senate. Virginia Mercury  
  3. The long wait continues– The already delayed Silver Line extension is going to be delayed some more. Metro officials said Wednesday the line to Dulles International Airport and Loudoun County will not be ready until spring or summer 2021. Metro GM Paul Wiedefeld said he is waiting for the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority, which is responsible for the construction, to come back with a start date. The new line will add six new stations and 11.4 miles of track. -WTOP
  4. Man arrested for threatening Filler-Corn— A Norfolk man was arrested Thursday for threatening Virginia House Speaker Eileen Fuller-Corn (D-Fairfax) on Facebook. He now faces a felony charge and up to ten years in prison for threatening to burn or bomb. The state Capitol Police Chief released a statement saying they “cannot emphasize strongly enough how seriously we take threats such as these.” -Richmond Times-Dispatch
  5. Massive wait list for families awaiting state disability services— Eight years after a federal investigation found Virginia was failing to provide adequate services to people with severe disabilities, demand has had only increased. About 13,000 people, including more than 3,000 with intense needs, are on a wait list to receive services through a Developmental Disability Medicaid waiver. The current House and Senate budgets allocate over $100 million to increase support, but advocates say it doesn’t go far enough. -VPM
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