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Local Coronavirus Closings and Cancellations

Meherrin Regional Library - Brunswick County Library and Richardson Memorial Library

All City of Emporia Offices are Closed to the Public (Municipal Building, Police Department and Public Works)

Greensville County Circuit Court Clerk (Tentative Reopening Date April 6, 2020)

Bruswick County Government is Closed to the Public

During this State of Emergency most Nursing Homes have Cancelled all Visitation

During this State of Emergency most Hospitals have changed their Visitation Policies, Please call ahead

Please check with your destination for current visitation policies during this Public Health Emergency/State of Emergency before leaving home

To include your closing or cancellation on this list, please email news@emporianews.com

Current Weather Conditions

 
Seven Day Forecast for Emporia, Virginia
 

Community Calendar Sponsored By...

 

Update to School Lunches during Coronavirus Emergency

 

Greensville County Public Schools will be providing breakfast and lunch meals, during our emergency closure.  Meals will be provided to all children without charge.  Acceptance and participation requirements for the program and all activities are the same for all regardless of race, color, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, political affiliation, or against otherwise qualified persons with disabilities, and there will be no discrimination in the course of the meal service. Meals will be provided, on a first come, first serve basis.  We will bus meals to certain locations throughout the school district.

In order to decrease exposure time for staff and community, starting Monday, April 6, meals will be provided at our current sites at schools and bus stops in the community on Monday only. Your child(ren) will still receive 5 breakfast meals and 5 lunch meals.

We will not provide meals the week of April 13-17, 2020, our scheduled Spring Break.

We are doing our best to practice social distancing at our sites. Thank you for your patience, support, and understanding.

Please continue to check the division’s media outlets for updates.

Meals will be available for pick up at the sites and times as follows:



Location     

Days of Service

Greensville Elementary School

1011 Sussex Drive, Emporia, VA 23847

 


April 6 - June 12 Monday

Breakfast & Lunch 9:00 am.–12:00 pm


Greensville County High School

403 Harding Street, Emporia, VA 23847


April 6 - June 12 Monday

Breakfast & Lunch 9:00 am.–12:00 pm


Old Brink School

Brink Road, Emporia, VA 23847


April 6 - June 12 Monday

Breakfast & Lunch 10:00 am.–10:15 am


Skippers Post Office

5334 Skippers Road, Skippers, VA 23879


April 6 - June 12 Monday

Breakfast & Lunch 10:30 am.–10:45 am


Cain’s Mobile Home Park

299 Liberty Road, Emporia, VA 23847


April 6 - June 12 Monday

Breakfast & Lunch 10:50am-11:00 am


Brook Ridge Apartments

1325 Skippers Road, Emporia, VA 23847


April 6 - June 12 Monday

Breakfast & Lunch 11:05-11:20 am


Washington Park Ball Park

750 Dry Bread Road, Emporia, VA 23847


April 6 - June 12 Monday

Breakfast & Lunch 10:00 am.­­-10:15 am


Meherrin River Park

1001 Meherrin Park Road, Emporia, VA 23847


April 6 - June 12 Monday

Breakfast & Lunch 10:20 am.–10:30 am

 


Spring Hill Village Mobile Home Park (Both sides)

Lowground Road, Emporia, VA 23847


April 6 - June 12 Monday

Breakfast & Lunch 10:40 am.–10:55 am


Falling Run Apartments

South Main Street, Emporia, VA 23847


April 6 - June 12 Monday

Breakfast & Lunch 11:00 am.–11:15 am


Purdy Store

14 Smokey Ordinary Road, Emporia, VA 23847


April 6 - June 12 Monday

Breakfast & Lunch 10:00 am.–10:15am


Jarratt Ball Park

South Braxton Ave, Jarratt VA 23867


April 6 - June 12 Monday

Breakfast & Lunch 10:30 am.–10:45 am


Blanks Lane

Emporia, VA 23847


April 6 - June 12 Monday

Breakfast & Lunch 10:55 am.–11:10 am


Woodruff Store

5559 Pleasant Shade Drive, Emporia, VA 23847


April 6 - June 12 Monday

Breakfast & Lunch 10:00 am.–10:15 am


Scottsdale Trailer Court

Carter Road, Emporia, VA 23847


April 6 - June 12 Monday

Breakfast & Lunch 10:20 am.–10:35 am


MS 58 Plaza

1001 Pleasant Shade Drive, Emporia, VA 23847


April 6 - June 12 Monday

Breakfast & Lunch 10:40 am.–10:55 am


Reese Village

311 Bond Court, Emporia, VA 23847


April 6 - June 12 Monday

Breakfast & Lunch 10:00 am.–10:15 am


Northwood Village

300 Lewis Street, Emporia, VA 23847


April 6 - June 12 Monday

Breakfast & Lunch 10:20 am.–10:35am


McDonald’s Bus Parking Lot

905 Market Drive, Emporia, VA 23847


April 6 - June 12 Monday

Breakfast & Lunch 10:40 am.–10:55 am


Top Hand Foundation

203 W Atlantic Street, Emporia, VA 23847


April 6 - June 12 Monday

Breakfast & Lunch 11:00 am.–11:15 am


Unkle Odie’s

121 Courtland Road, Emporia, VA 23847


April 6 - June 12 Monday

Breakfast & Lunch 11:25 am.–11:40 am

To file a program complaint of discrimination, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form (AD-3027), found online at http://www.ascr.usda.gov/complaint_filing_cust.html and at any USDA office, or write a letter addressed to USDA and provide in the letter all of the information requested in the form. To request a copy of the complaint form, call (866) 632-9992.

Submit your completed form or letter to USDA by:

(1)    Mail: U.S. Department of Agriculture

Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights

1400 Independence Avenue, SW

Washington, D.C. 20250-9410;

(2)    Fax: (202) 690-7442; or

(3)    Email: program.intake@usda.gov.

This institution is an equal opportunity provider.    

Governor Northam Issues Statewide Stay at Home Order

RICHMOND—Governor Ralph Northam today issued a statewide Stay at Home order to protect the health and safety of Virginians and mitigate the spread of the novel coronavirus, or COVID-19. The executive order takes effect immediately and will remain in place until June 10, 2020, unless amended or rescinded by a further executive order.

The order directs all Virginians to stay home except in extremely limited circumstances. Individuals may leave their residence for allowable travel, including to seek medical attention, work, care for family or household members, obtain goods and services like groceries, prescriptions, and others as outlined in Executive Order Fifty-Three, and engage in outdoor activity with strict social distancing requirements.

The executive order also directs all Virginia institutions of higher education to stop in-person classes and instruction. Private campgrounds must close for short-term stays, and beaches will be closed statewide except for fishing and exercise. 

“We are in a public health crisis, and we need everyone to take this seriously and act responsibly,” said Governor Northam. “Our message to Virginians is clear: stay home. We know this virus spreads primarily through human-to-human contact, and that’s why it’s so important that people follow this order and practice social distancing. I’m deeply grateful to everyone for their cooperation during this unprecedented and difficult time.”

The full text of Executive Order Fifty-Five can be found here.

Last week, Governor Northam issued Executive Order Fifty-Three closing certain non-essential businesses, prohibiting public gatherings of more than 10 people, and directing all K-12 schools to remain closed for the rest of the academic year. A Frequently Asked Questions guide about Executive Order Fifty-Three can be found here.

For the latest information about the COVID-19 outbreak, visit virginia.gov/coronavirus or CDC.gov/coronavirus.

Up-to-Date Information on the Coronavirus/COVID-19

For the most accurate information available please visit any of the following sites:

Remember to Keep Your Social Distance -

  • Remain About 6 Feet Apart
  • No Gatherings of More Than 10 People

Shelter in Place, Leaving Your Home Only for:

  • Groceries
  • Pharmacy
  • Medical Care
  • Exercise/Walking the Dog

Wash Your Hands Thouroughly and Often with Soap and Water for at Least Twenty Seconds (Sing Happy Birthday Twice).

If you are unable to wash your hands, Use Hand Sanitizer with an Alcohol Content of at Least 60%

Tags: 

How can You avoid getting COVID-19?

 The Virginia Department of Health recommends that everyone follow everyday prevention practices:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.

  • Stay home when you are sick.

  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.

  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning product.

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds (sing Happy Birthday), especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.

  • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains 60%–95% alcohol

 

If you do feel ill, please remember that there are many causes of respiratory illness. If you are sick, it is important that you speak with your healthcare provider. They can evaluate your illness and determine if you might need to be tested for the virus that causes COVID-19.

Please be aware that Hospitals and Elder Care Facilities may be restricting visitors to protect at risk populations within their facilities. If you are planning a visit to a hospital or Elder Care Facility (Rehab Facility, Nursing Home, Retiremient Home or Village), please call ahead and ensure that that facility is currently allowing visitors. If you are checking on elderly neighbors, also call ahead to ensure that they are receiving visitrors.

Please visit the Virginia Department of Health's Coronovirus Page for complete and updated information. This information was taken form the FAQ Document on March 12, 2020.

April, 2020,Update from Congressman Donald McEachin

These are incredibly challenging and scary times. We are all having to make great sacrifices to ensure that we defeat COVID-19 as quickly as possible. This means some parents are out of work, children are home from school, and families are isolating from one another to conquer this viral enemy.  I want you to know that while my staff and I are working remotely, we are all still hard at work and we are still here for you.

Most importantly, I want to update you on the legislation Congress recently passed to help people across the country during this pandemic. I was so pleased to be part of advocating for and passing the stimulus bill to help American families and business owners.

Our goal for this legislation – my goal – is to help people. Unfortunately, many Virginians are out of work, some are ill, and small business owners are trying to figure out how to make sure their business survives this pandemic. This bill will make a real difference to struggling families, suffering small businesses, and our overwhelmed health care system. This legislation will:

  • Give hospitals money to help them purchase desperately needed equipment and pay for free testing, which is desperately needed across the country.
  • Provide almost $400 billion for small businesses to survive these trying times. Businesses that maintain employees will be able to turn loans into grants, which will both help businesses stay afloat and keep more workers on the job.
  • Provide $260 billion for unemployment benefits so that out-of-work Americans will know they can pay rent and bills while they must stay home. The unemployment benefits include part time workers and gig workers and increases the benefits currently available.
  • To apply for this, contact the Virginia Unemployment office. Their telephone number is 1-866-832-2363 and they are available 8:15am to 4:30pm. More information is available on their website:  www.vec.virginia.gov.
  • Provide direct stimulus money to the vast majority of Americans. Individuals making less than $75,000 annually will receive $1200 and couples who file jointly and make under $150,000 combined income will receive $2400. Families will receive $500 for each child.  Those who make between $75,000 and $99,000 annually will receive a diminished amount on a sliding scale. This money will allow for folks to buy groceries, pay bills and hopefully ease some of the financial burden this outbreak has placed on individuals.

Our goal is to protect American families, keep Americans safe, while doing what we can to stimulate the economy. Please know that this is not the end. We recognize this is going to be a long haul and we will be vigilant. Protecting the future of this great nation and all Americans is our singular goal. I expect we will see additional legislation to help Americans and to ensure our economy comes back.

Additionally, researchers all over this country and around the world are working diligently to find a vaccine to offer protection from the novel coronavirus. Unfortunately, that is a prolonged process as vaccines require 12 to 18 months of development and testing. We certainly do not want to inject a healthy person with medication that could be harmful. At the same time, research is ongoing for therapeutics that will address the virus, mitigate its impacts, and diminish its severity. Because those medications are given to persons already quite ill and struggling, they do not require as much testing to be approved. When an individual is quite ill, taking chance on a novel drug is the compassionate and humane course if it can potentially save a life or ameliorate the outcome.

Please know that this is not the end. We recognize this is going to be a long haul and we will be vigilant. Protecting the future of this great nation and all Americans is our singular goal. I expect we will see additional legislation to help Americans and to ensure our economy comes back.

 I want to thank all the health care professionals, first responders, grocery and pharmacy workers, mail deliverers, garbage collectors, and all the others who continue to diligently do their jobs for the sake of all Virginians.

Lastly, let me reiterate that my office and I are here to help. If you need help with a federal agency or have a question about the bill, please go to my website at mceachin.house.gov.

Prep continues at old hospital site, precautions a constant at CMH

Editor’s Note: In an effort to inform our communities about changes at VCU Health Community Memorial Hospital, we are releasing this additional information about the stand up of the old hospital building on Buena Vista Circle and precautions taken routinely by CMH in dealing with infectious diseases.

“As VCU Health Community Memorial Hospital continues to prep the old CMH on Buena Vista to possibly accept patients, we felt it was important to let the community know about precautions we at the hospital take daily to help control the spread of this virus and other infectious diseases and to protect our patients, staff and the community as a whole,” said Scott Burnette, CEO of CMH. 

He explained, “At CMH we have taken extensive precautions through the years to protect everyone from the spread of infectious diseases. That was true in 1954and it is true today, although medical research has provided us with many more tools over the years. There are important steps each and every employee takes to reduce the possibility of spreading a disease to patients, other staff members and the community.”

“We practice a strict regimen in what is called donning and doffing of personal protective equipment (PPE). Every employee who works in direct patient care has been specifically trained in this thorough procedure that protects everyone,” he said. 

This protective equipment includes disposable gowns, gloves, masks and eye protection. Further, as staff members put on (don) or take off (doff) the PPE, an observer is to be present to make sure the procedure is followed correctly.

“When infectious diseases are present and those diseases have an airborne component like COVID-19, patients are placed in what is called a negative pressure room or can be managed by leaving the patient room door closed to the hallway at all times,” he added. 

Negative pressure rooms bring in air from the hallway outside the room at all times and then the air in the room is exhausted through the roof at CMH where it dissipates and is no longer an issue. 

Burnette explained that if a COVID positive patient is in a negative pressure room, the airborne virus cannot escape the room except being expelled harmlessly through the roof.

Employees remove their PPE in a very specific manner at the door of the negative pressure room before exiting the room and wash their hands during each step of removing their equipment. This keeps those staff members and others safe from contact with the airborne virus.

Burnette explained that this procedure is utilized at hospitals across the country and is the accepted practice of the World Health Organization and the Centers For Disease Control with the federal government.

But he added that everyone has a responsibility to help slow or stop the spread of infectious diseases.

“The most important thing everyone can do is practice social distancing.  Six feet is the magic number.  Staying six feet away from people, being careful what you touch, avoid touching your face and washing your hands often with soap and water or sanitizer is the best way to slow or stop the progression of this virus,” Burnette said. 

Burnette said that the decision to prepare the old hospital to possibly receive patients was appropriate and necessary.

"Preparing the old hospital for COVID-19 patients is a precautionary step to make sure we have the capacity to handle any and all patients who present at CMH.  If precautions are not put into motion right now there could be a scenario where people in our community, our friends or family, could be in need of health care and CMH would not have room for them.  Having the CMH facility on Buena Vista Circle available as an option is a way to prevent this horrible scenario from taking place.  We are in the business of providing the best possible care for our patients and having this facility available to us will give us the best chance to do just that."  

If anyone has questions about COVID-19 they should visit the CDC website at: cdc.gov.

Spotlight on Jobs by the Virginia Employment Commission

 

General Labor:  Full-time factory worker/production worker positions. Will perform various job duties such as: grinding, polishing, waxing molds, packing, inspection; involves lifting and standing.  Job Order #1936760

 

Maintenance and Repair Workers, General:  Candidate will be moping, sweeping, breaking down boxes, taking out trash and general cleaning of the plant upon direction of the supervisor.  Job Order #1936765

 

Electrician I:  Responsibilities of this job will include providing electrical support in the manufacturing facility. The person holding this position will be a responder to service calls pertaining to electrical malfunctions in automated machinery within the plant. These malfunctions may be in various types of electrical devices, such as switches, electric valves, analog input or output devices, motors, wiring, or PLC/computer anomalies.  Job Order #1935876

 

Registered Nurse:  Work alongside and support technicians, other nurses, dietitians, social workers, physicians and the center manager. Deliver care to patients who are often dealing with multiple co-morbidities which require unique treatment plans and the ability to leverage a broad range of nursing skills and knowledge.   Job Order #1936094

Sales Representative:  Identifies and attracts new customers by introducing new products, services, and technologies while maintaining existing relationships in an effort to increase sales and exceed customer expectations. Sells products for manufacturer or distributor to business and industrial establishments or individuals at the sales office, store, showroom, or customer's place of business, etc.  Job Order #1935370

THESE AND ALL JOBS WITH THE VIRGINIA EMPLOYMENT COMMISSION CAN BE FOUND ONLINE AT

www.vawc.virginia.gov

The Virginia Employment Commission is An Equal Opportunity Employer/Program. Auxiliary aids and services are available upon request to individuals with disabilities.

La Comision de Empleo de Virginia es un empleador/programa con igualdad de portunidades.  Los auxiliaries y servicios estan disponibles a dedido para personas con discapacidades

Jason Billy Vincent

April 18, 1974-April 1, 2020

It is with deepest sorrow that we say goodbye to Jason Billy Vincent, age 45, our beloved son, brother, family member, and friend who passed away suddenly on Wednesday, April 1, 2020 at his home in Skippers, VA.

Jason was born April 18, 1974, in Emporia, VA and he spent most of his life in nearby Skippers. Over the course of his career, Jason served in the US Army in Ft. Benning, GA where he attended Infantry Training and later worked with Bradley Fighter Vehicles.  After discharging from the Army, Jason worked in Computer Science, graduated from Welding School, and most notably in recent years worked in his family’s business, The Good Earth Peanut Company in Skippers, VA.

Those who knew Jason, even just a little, lost a shining light in their lives.

Jason will be sorely missed everyday by his father and mother, Lindsey Somner Vincent and Janet Scott Vincent; his sister, Claire Vincent (Brian Gilligan); his brother Benjamin Vincent; his nephew, Avett Gilligan; his loving aunts, uncles, cousins, and many, many wonderful friends.  Jason will also be greatly missed by his Good Earth Peanut Company “family” who he saw, loved, and worked with closely every day.

Jason is preceded in death by his paternal grandparents Billy Ben Vincent and Frances Somner Vincent and his maternal grandparents William Edmunds Tucker and Della Elder Tucker. 

Some of Jason’s favorite things were his dogs (and animals in general), Sun Drop, motorcycles, Chicken Tetrazzini, video games and listening to music.

Due to COVID-19 a private service will be held now, but a full memorial service is planned to honor Jason’s life once the COVID-19 social distancing bans are lifted.

Because of Jason’s love of animals, contributions in memory of Jason may be made to the non-profit organization, Luv4Pawz Animal Rescue, 552 North Main St., Emporia, VA 23847 or online @ luv4pawzrescue.org

Online Condolences can be sent to: www.wrennclarkehagan.com or echolsfuneralhome.com

Gale Poole Moore

October 24, 1942 - April 2, 2020

Gale Poole Moore, 77, died Thursday, April 2, 2020.

Gale was the daughter of the late Wesley C. “Jimmy” Poole and Ruby Wray Poole. In addition to her parents she was preceded in death by her beloved husband, Edward A. “Arnie” Moore, a brother, Clarence Wesley “Sonny or Little Jimmy” Poole, and a sister, Helen Poole Gibson.

Gale loved her Church and her Church Family, her work at Echols Funeral Home, where she was the Office Manager for over thirty years, she loved the beach, bingo, and travelling, but most of all she loved her daughter and grandson and her extended family.

Gale is survived by her loving daughter and grandson, Kimberly Moore Downing and Morey Ray Downing, both of Virginia Beach, a special grandson Ed Powell,  her brother, William Boyd Poole and his wife Lori of Emporia, cousin, Nancy Poole Reyes, an aunt, Mable Wray Mizzell of Petersburg, her sister in law, Jean Moore Bennett and her husband Alton, special nephews, Dean Moore and his wife Lori, Albert Calvin “Plug” Moore Jr. and his wife Susan, niece, Deanna Moore Babb and her husband Michael, and many more nieces and nephews who she loved dearly and a special friend, Reni Hobbs of Emporia.

A private Graveside Service will be held at Zion Baptist Church, where she will be laid to rest beside her beloved Husband Arnie. A public Celebration of Gale’s life will be held at a later time.

Echols Funeral Home is taking care of the arrangements, and online condolences may be left at echolsfuneralhome.com.

Dottie Williams

April 09, 1937 - April 01, 2020

Dottie Williams, 82, passed away Wednesday, April 1, 2020 at Mary View Hospital in Portsmouth, Virginia after a brief illness. She grew up on the family farm in Skippers that she loved so much.

Dottie was preceded in death by her parents, Thomas and Rachel; brothers, Billy ‘Wimp” and Freddie; her sister, Barbara Little and a nephew, Stacy Little. She is survived by her brothers, The Reverend Kenneth Williams (Shirley) of Newsoms, Virginia and Eddie Williams (Jo Ann) of Emporia; nieces, Nancy Jenkins (Whitey), Kathie Isles (Bobby), Penny Baugham (Lynn) and Tracy Williams; nephews, Wayne Williams (LeeAnn), Marlon Little (Sylvia) and Trent Williams (Dawn). She also is survived by numerous great-nieces and great-nephews; cousins and friends whom she loved dearly. Dottie greatly missed her church and her church family at Forest Hill Baptist Church after she moved to Courtland Health and Rehab. A memorial service will be held at a later date. Online condolences may be shared with the family at www.owenfh.com.

Meherrin Regional Library Remains Closed

Due to the current COVID-19 crisis the Meherrin Regional System will remain closed until further notice. This closure also includes the use of the library's meeting rooms. The library will not charge fines and item due dates will continue to be extended until normal operations resume. Wi-Fi continues to be available in parking spots closest to library entrances. If you have questions concerning your account or other library resources please email the library at mrlsweb@gmail.com. The library appreciates the patience and understanding of the community during this time. The Meherrin Regional Library includes the Brunswick County Library, Lawrenceville and the Richardson Memorial Library, Emporia.

ATTORNEY GENERAL HERRING URGES VIRGINIANS TO COMPLETE CENSUS QUESTIONNAIRE

~ On “Census Day” Herring highlights the importance of the census for things like federal funding for healthcare and transportation, and state and federal legislative districts ~

RICHMOND (April 1, 2020) – On “Census Day” Attorney General Mark R. Herring is encouraging all Virginians to complete their 2020 decennial census questionnaires to make sure that there is an accurate count of Virginia’s population. Hundreds of billions of dollars in federal funds are directly tied to demographic information obtained through the census, including the Highway Trust Fund and other Department of Transportation grants, Child Care Development Grants, and Medicaid. Consequently, inaccurate counts can potentially deprive Virginia of much-needed funds designed to protect low-income and vulnerable communities.

“On this Census Day, most, if not all, households in Virginia should have received a census questionnaire – please make sure to fill it out and send it back to the Census Bureau. While I know most of us are focused on the coronavirus, it is so incredibly important that we all still participate in the census,” said Attorney General Herring. “The census isn’t just a project that the government does every ten years to figure out how many people live in the country. It ensures that Virginia has fair representation both at the state and the federal level and it determines funding for critical things like healthcare, transportation and childcare.

“I successfully fought in court to protect the integrity of the census and block the Trump Administration’s citizenship question from being included on this year’s census. Now all Virginians must do their part and fill out their questionnaire to make sure that everyone living in the Commonwealth is properly counted. An undercount could cost Virginia millions of dollars in federal funding.”

While the census counts Virginians at their permanent residence, people without a permanent residence are counted at the place where they are living on April 1st, which is why that day is known as “Census Day.” The 2020 census is already well underway but, because of the COVID-19 pandemic, response rates have been slower and the U.S. Census Bureau has adjusted the original timeline in response to that. To make things as easy as possible, you can respond to the census online, over the phone or through the mail.

Attorney General Herring successfully protected the integrity of the 2020 census after he sued to block the Trump Administration’s addition of a “poison pill” citizenship question, that the Census Bureau said would likely depress response and compromise the accuracy of the census. Attorney General Herring’s lawsuit emphasized the irreparable harm that would result from inaccuracies in the 2020 Census.

Additionally, the coalition filed official comments in August 2018 urging the Census Bureau to reconsider its decision to include an unnecessary citizenship question that would impair the Bureau’s essential function of counting all people in the 2020 census. The comments explained that demanding citizenship information on the census would depress response rates in cities and states with large immigrant populations, directly threatening those states’ fair representation in Congress and the Electoral College, as well as billions of dollars in critical federal funds.

A total of $700 billion is distributed annually to nearly 300 different census-guided federal grant and funding programs. In FY2015, Virginia received over $953 million in Highway Trust Fund grants, over $131 million in Urbanized Area Formula Grants, and nearly $64 million in Child Care Development grants, all based on census data.

VIRGINIA STATE POLICE ENFORCEMENT PRACTICES OF GOVERNOR’S EXECUTIVE ORDERS AND DIRECTIVES

RICHMOND – The Virginia State Police encourages all Virginians to adhere to Virginia Governor Northam’s directives and do their part by staying home in order to best mitigate the exposure and spread of COVID-19 within the Commonwealth. State troopers, for their personal protection and for the safety of the public, are minimizing their direct contact with the public. All Department recruitment events, public presentations, training, ceremonies, etc., have all been canceled or postponed through June 10, 2020.

Governor Northam has directed state and local law enforcement to initially address violations of the following Executive Order 53 and Executive Order 55 directives with education and warnings. Persistent violation of these Executive Order (EO) directives can result in an individual(s) or business being charged with a class one misdemeanor, which carries up to a year in jail and $2,500 fine:

  • Prohibition of all public and private in-person, indoor and outdoor gatherings of more than 10 individuals – with the exception of the operation of businesses not required to close under EO 53 and the gathering of family members living in the same residence;
  • Closure of all dining and congregation areas in restaurants, dining establishments, food courts, breweries, microbreweries, distilleries, wineries, tasting rooms and farmers markets;
  • Any brick and mortar retail business (not listed in paragraph 5 of EO 53) failing to limit all in-person shopping to no more than 10 patrons per establishment. If any such business cannot adhere to the 10-patron limit with proper social distancing requirements, it must close.
  • Closure of all public access to recreational and entertainment businesses;
  • Closure of public beaches for all activity, except for exercising and fishing;
  • Cancellation of in-person classes and instruction at institutions of higher education;
  • Cessation of all reservations for overnight stays of less than 14 nights at all privately-owned campgrounds

 Virginia State Police have been and will continue to assess Virginia EO violations on a case-by-case basis.

 State police is required to uphold the laws of the Commonwealth and will continue to have a visible presence within our communities and on the roads for the safety of those living, working and traveling in Virginia. The law still requires law enforcement to have reasonable suspicion to initiate a traffic stop on a vehicle. Virginia State Police will not be making random traffic stops on vehicles nor conducting checkpoints to determine if a driver is traveling for a permissible reason, as granted by EO 53 and EO 55.

The current Governor’s Executive Orders related to COVID-19:

  • Do not require an individual to carry documentation related to one’s purpose of travel;
  • Do not close Virginia roads/interstates to Virginia residents;
  • Do not restrict non-Virginia residents from traveling into and/or through Virginia;
  • Do not prevent Virginians from traveling out of the state. State police does encourage any Virginian(s) traveling out-of-state to check, in advance, the other state(s) for any travel restrictions in effect for that state(s). Governor Northam has advised Virginians returning from out-of-state and/or international travel to self-quarantine for at least 14 days.

For any additional questions related to the statewide “Stay at Home” order, please go to www.virginia.gov/coronavirus/faq.

Virginia Legal Aid Society Remains Open During Outbreak

During the COVID-19 outbreak, Virginia Legal Aid Society is remaining open for business, using law to resolve problems affecting the basics of life for low-income families and individuals.  Lawline, our telephone intake and advice system, will remain open during its normal business hours: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., at 866-534-5243 (866-LEGL-AID). VLAS urges everyone to call rather than visit, if possible, to help keep everyone safe.    

VLAS's five offices in Lynchburg, Danville, Martinsville, Farmville and Suffolk will remain open by appointment and during limited open business hours.  Visitors should contact their local office prior to visiting in order to confirm hours of public access. The Lynchburg office is open to the public from 9 a.m.-noon weekdays; the other offices are open from 9-11 a.m. These hours are subject to change.

VLAS’s mission is to resolve the serious legal problems of low-income people, promote economic and family stability, reduce poverty through effective legal assistance, and to champion equal justice.

From Fashion Design to Chemistry, Classes Adapt to Distance Learning

By Jimmy O’Keefe, Capital News Service

RICHMOND -- Students and teachers at all levels of education are transitioning from classroom to computer as the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases continues to rise. Not every subject lends itself to a smooth transition to distance learning, as students and instructors have discovered. 

“I think we’re all really frustrated,” said Jordyn Wade, a fashion design major at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond. “But we know that our professors are doing what they can in a really unprecedented situation.” 

Wade said that she and her classmates are now meeting remotely through Zoom, a video conferencing platform. Zoom allows students to meet virtually during a time when people can’t meet physically, but distance learning poses challenges for courses that require more than a lecture, like art classes and lab components of science classes.

Students like Wade worked mostly with industrial grade equipment.

“We kind of rely heavily on the school for supplies like sewing machines and the industrial equipment that can cost thousands of dollars,” Wade said. “Now we just stare at each other and they ask us,‘What can you guys do? Can you hand sew an entire jacket before the end of the month?’”

Wade said that one of the most frustrating aspects of distance learning is not being able to receive direct feedback from professors.

“We can’t ask our professors what’s wrong with the garment that we’re making, we can just send them pictures and hope they can figure it out from afar,” Wade said. 

Chloe Pallak, a student in VCU’s art program said that many of her projects are being graded on whether or not they are complete. 

“To get a grade for an assignment, you just have to do it,” Pallak said. “It really takes away the motivation of wanting to make art and not just complete the assignment.” 

Courses that include lab components, such as classes in environmental science, also face challenges as classes move online. Griffin Erney, an environmental studies major at VCU, said that distance learning prevents students from accessing lab materials that are typically provided in the classroom. 

“Before the class was online we would just do different activities and be provided with the materials,” Erney said. “Having labs online is more challenging, on top of all the work that we already have.” 

On Monday, Gov. Ralph Northam issued an order that closed down all K-12 schools in the state for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year. 

Davide D’Urbino, a chemistry and organic chemistry teacher at Clover Hill High School in Chesterfield County, said he plans on using computer applications to supplement labs that cannot be completed in the classroom. He said the school division requested that teachers hold off on introducing new learning material.

“The expectation was that you could teach new stuff, but then you have to go back in class and reteach it,” D’Urbino said.

D’Urbino said teachers aren’t allowed to teach new material online because some students may not have internet access. He said he understands why the school division has placed these restrictions but said it “feels weird.” 

Distance learning has also presented challenges to teachers trying to adapt to lecturing online. 

“Some people say teaching is 75 percent theater, you just go out there and do improv. You can’t really do that online,” D’Urbino said. “It’s very difficult to intervene and correct course if you realize something isn’t quite working out.”

Teachers have also scrambled for ways to continue instruction for students that lack access to the internet.

Janice Barton, a 5th grade science teacher at Honaker Elementary School in Russell County, said that about half of the 60 students she teaches have access to the internet. She said the school is using Google Classroom, a web platform that allows teachers to share files with students through the internet. For students without internet access, teachers create physical packets of learning content.

“We’re working as grade levels, we’re going in and working together to put the packets together,” Barton said. “We have pickup days and drop-off days, and that’s how we are working and dealing with this right now.”

Barton said the school uses phone calls, emails, and the app Remind, which allows teachers to send messages to students to keep in contact with parents and students. 

While local school divisions are tasked with making decisions on how to pursue distance learning, the Virginia Department of Education issued guidance to help divisions continue instruction. 

VDOE’s guidance to local school divisions includes offering instruction during the summer of 2020, extending the school term or adjusting the next, and adding learning modules to extended school calendars. 

Superintendent of Public Instruction James Lane issued guidance regarding eight high school senior graduation requirements and will be issuing further guidance for half of those, which can not be waived outright. 

Two other graduation requirements -- training in emergency first aid and the completion of a virtual course -- require action by the General Assembly in order to be waived.

Riparian Woman’s Club Scholarship Applications

The Riparian Woman’s Club is pleased to present two scholarships to qualifying seniors. The club has participated in the scholarship program for many years.

Applications are available via email. Please email news@emporianews.com to have your contanct information forwarded.

To be eligible for consideration, the applicant must:

  • Be a High School Senior;
  • Be a resident of Greensville County, the City of Emporia or the Town of Jarratt, Virginia;
  • Submit a completed Scholarship Application to the Riparian Woman’s Club Scholarship Committee no later than the deadline date specified; Monday, April 27th, 2020 ;
  • Submit a signed Teacher Recommendation Form;
  • Submit a High School Transcript, to include SAT Scores, as well as Class Rank.

Applications may be turned in to guidance counselors by no later than Monday, April 27, 2020.

Help Children by Having Fun Golfing

Help children at Jackson-Feild Behavioral Health Services who suffer from mental health and/or substance use disorders while having fun golfing.

Jackson-Feild will host its 25th Annual Golf Tournament on May 4 at the Golf Club at the Highlands in Chesterfield County.  Over the past 24 years, this tournament has raised $538,520 to meet a variety of operating and capital needs that benefitted its children.

The proceeds this year will be used to improve upgrade much-needed infrastructure projects on campus.

 Jackson-Feild seeks raise $30,000 from the tournament to meet these needs.

The cost to pay is $150 per player, or $600 for a team.  Lunch is provided at noon, and a banquet at the close of play. Play begins at 1:00 p.m.  with shotgun start.

Jackson-Feild’s mission is to provide high-quality evidence-based services for children who have suffered severe emotional trauma, mental illness, and/or struggling with addiction. The goal is to restore wellness so that children can successfully return home to their community.

For more information, call Tod Balsbaugh at 804-354-6929 or tbalsbaugh@jacksonfeild.org.  You may register by phone or on our website at www.jacksonfeild.org.

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