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February 2018

GREENSVILLE/EMPORIA DEPARTMENT OF SOCIAL SERVICES

LOCAL BOARD MEETING

The Greensville/Emporia Department of Social Services Administrative Board will hold its regular meeting Thursday, July 18, 2019, at 3:30 p.m. The meeting will be held at the Greensville/Emporia Department of Social Services located at 1748 East Atlantic Street.

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  1. Veteran's Representative Available at VEC

    There is a Veterans Representative located at The Virginia Employment Commission in Emporia, VA. Jobs for Veterans State Grant provide services to disabled veterans and those that have significant barriers to employment. Those barriers may include: disabled, incarcerated or released from incarceration, between the ages of 18-24, no high school diploma or GED, homeless, low income, recently separated and unemployed for 27 weeks, eligible spouse or family caregiver, fleeing violent or life threatening situations, or a situation a veteran may interpret as a barrier to employment. Mr. Ellsworth is the Veterans Representative and may be contacted at 434-634-3762 or stop by The Virginia Employment Commission located at 1300 Greensville County Circle in Emporia.

  2. WARNER SPONSORS RESOLUTION TO HONOR BUFFALO SOLDIERS

     ~ Bipartisan resolution honors contributions of African-American soldiers who served in the United States Army following the Civil War ~

    WASHINGTON –  In celebration of the achievements and contributions that African-Americans have made as part of Black History Month, U.S. Sen. Mark R. Warner cosponsored a bipartisan resolution to honor the “Buffalo Soldiers,” African-American soldiers who served in the United States Army following the Civil War and made invaluable contributions to the fabric of our nation’s history.

    Following the conclusion of the Civil War, the United States Army allowed African-Americans to serve in segregated units. Two of these units, the 9th and 10th Horse Cavalry, produced the “Buffalo Soldiers.” The soldiers received their nickname from Native Americans as a testament to their fearlessness in battle. In spite of being allocated inadequate resources and facing prejudice, the Buffalo Soldiers earned more Congressional Medals of Honor and had the lowest desertion rate of any unit in the Army. Five of those Medal of Honor recipients hailed from Virginia – Isaiah Mays (Carters Bridge, Va), Fitz Lee (Dinwiddie County, Va), Henry Johnson (Boydton, Va), Clinton Greaves (Madison County, Va), and Benjamin Brown (Spotsylvania County, Va).

    "These brave Americans were among the first to answer the call to service at a time when African-Americans frankly weren’t treated as full members of our society,” said Warner. “We owe a debt of gratitude to the Buffalo Soldiers, and this resolution is an important way to honor their service to the United States.”

    The resolution was introduced by Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) and Sen. Roger Wicker (R-MS) and is cosponsored by U.S. Sens. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), Bob Menendez (D-NJ), Chris Coons (D-DE), Thom Tillis (R-NC), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Ben Cardin (D-MD), Tom Cotton (R-AR), Ron Wyden (D-OR), Tim Scott (R-SC), Mazie Hirono (D-HI), Claire McCaskill (D-MO), Tom Carper (D-DE), Bill Nelson (D-FL), and Bernie Sanders (I-VT).

    The text of the Senate resolution follows and can also be viewed here

  3. Connecting With Social Security

    By Jacqueline Weisgarber, Social Security Public Affairs Specialist in Richmond, Virginia 

    Every day thousands use it to do business with Social Security. We strive to offer the kind of services that meet people’s needs.  And sometimes you want fast and direct answers over the phone. We have that option.

    You can call us toll free at 1-800-772-1213. Social Security offers some automated services that allow people to receive service without waiting to speak to a representative. The automated services are available 24 hours a day and include some of the most popular services that people need. With automated services, you can request a benefit verification (proof of income) letter, replace a lost SSA-1099 (tax summary needed for taxes), request a replacement Medicare card, ask for form SSA-1020 to apply for help with Medicare prescription drug costs, or request an SS-5 application for a Social Security card.

    When our automated services ask such things as, “How can I help you?” Just say, “Get a proof of income letter” or “Replace Medicare card.” Next, you will be asked for some personal information to identify yourself, then we will respond to your request. We will mail you the document or form you requested. It takes less time to use automated services than to reach a representative by phone on a busy day. 

    Sometimes, you just need Social Security information such as, “What date will my check arrive?” or “What is the SSI program?” Automated services feature some informational messages about these popular topics. If payment delivery date is the type of info you need, when asked “How can I help you?” just reply “Payment delivery date.” You will hear a recorded message stating the current month and the future month’s payment dates. Other topics include direct deposit, SSI messages, the cost-of-living adjustment, Medicare prescription drug program, tax information, representative payee, and fraud. Dial, and listen — what a simple way to stay informed.

    Whether you use our automated services, speak to a representative by phone, use our website, or visit an office, Social Security wants to connect with you. Connection is a vital part of helping you secure your today and tomorrow. To connect with us through our automated services, visit http://www.socialsecurity.gov/agency/contact/phone.html.

  4. The End of an Era - Virginia Pork Festival Coming to an End

    The Virginia Pork Festival is coming to an end. Below is the text postedon the Virginia Pork Festival Website:

    "After 44 years, we have reluctantly decided that it is time to say good-bye to the Virginia Pork Festival. This has been a very painful decision to make, however, we would like to end this run on a positive note. This festival would never have existed without the support of hometown, Emporia and the Emporia/Greensville Ruritan Club, the County and all law enforcement. For that, we say thank you. There are so many people that have been a part of the festival throughout the years, that it would be impossible to list them all and not miss someone. To all the bands , especially Craig Woolard and the Embers, thanks for the many years of great entertainment that you brought to the festival. Boars Head, Gunnoe’s, Steven’s Sausage and Smithfield Meats, you deserve applause and our taste buds thank you for the  quality pork products throughout the years.

    ​To the Sadler family, the Pecht Family and Pecht Distributing, we truly appreciate your years of dedication and loyalty.

    Our non-profit organizations and other groups that prepared all of the pork dishes, we love you and will truly miss each of you. The long hours of preparation and your dedication to this festival are not to be forgotten.  

    Last, by definitely not least, we’ll miss our attendees. You guys came from all over. We’ve even  had people from Hawaii. We hope that you have enjoyed our hospitality has much as we enjoyed seeing you walk through those gates and there were a lot of you! We understand that this festival was a yearly tradition for many and we are truly humbled that you choose to spend your valuable time with us.  

    ​It has become to difficult for our group, of the last three years, to operate, raise adequate funds and sustain enough volunteers to carry on an event of this magnitude to make it what it deserves to be and should be, after the festival suffering many years before. Always remember, we came together for a common cause on a hot, June afternoon, once a year, only for a few short hours, to eat great pork dishes, drink some cold beverages, dance to some good music and be a part of the Virginia Pork Festival one more time. We did it together, all of us.  So we are choosing to go out gracefully as the sun sets once more, on the pond in the middle of the festival grounds, we wave farewell to you and we thank you for the many years of good times and great memories." 

  5. Bill Banning Sanctuary Cities Heads to Senate Floor on 7-6 Vote

  6. Lawmakers, Northam, lobbyists go to court — for a good cause

  7. Exxon-Mobil Grant to Brunswick Academy

    Brunswick Academy received a $1,000 grant from the Exxon Mobil Educational Alliance.  This grant is given to selected schools across the country in communities served by Exxon or Mobil stations.  The grant was made possible by funding from Exxon Mobil Corporation in conjunction with Parker Oil Company.  Mr. Ed Low of Parker Oil Company presented the check to our Head of School, Mrs. Cheryl Bowen.

     

  8. VCU Health CMH Team Member of the Month for February 2018

    (Left to Right) W. Scott Burnette, CEO, VCU Health Community Memorial Hospital presented Linda Wilkins, Environmental Services Technician, the VCU Health CMH STAR Service Team Member of the Month Award for January.  There to congratulate Linda was Todd Howell, VP of Professional Services and Gary Perry, Director of Environmental Services.

    Linda has been employed at VCU Health CMH for 17 years.  Her dedication and attention to detail are just two of the qualities that make her a wonderful asset to VCU Health CMH.  The nomination form submitted on her behalf stated, “Linda went beyond what is outlined in her job description to help a nurse.  She demonstrated a level of teamwork that embodies the true feel of a community hospital. Service that shows you care is a great quality that Linda shows each day.  She cares about the patients on her hall and doesn’t hesitate to speak up for them! ” 

    In addition to the award certificate, Linda received a STAR Service lapel pin, letter of commendation from Administration, a $40 gift certificate, and a parking place of her choice for the month.

  9. Greensville Schools to host Child Find

    Greensville County Public Schools will sponsor Child Find on Friday, March 16, 2018 from 10 am until 5 pm at Greensville Elementary School.

    Child Find is registration for Head Start or Virginia Preschool Initiative.

    Head Start is a federal preschool program which provides comprehensive services and learning experiences to prepare children for Kindergarten and move families toward self-sufficiency. The program also operates in compliance with IDEA to include children with special needs. All Head Start services are free to children and families.

    The Virginia Preschool Initiative, established in 1995, distributes state funds to schools and community based organizations to provide quality preschool program for at-risk four-year-olds. The program offers full day Pre-kindergarten, parent involvement, child health and social services, and transportation to families with four-year-olds at risk of school failure.

    Parents of all children who are or will be four years old on or before September 30thand are residents of Emporia or Greensville County are encouraged to attend. There will be NO TESTING. Children do NOT need to attend!

    To apply, you must bring your child’s OFFICIAL birth certificate (NOT a hospital certificate), immunization record, PROOF of residency (for example: a current water/electric bill with YOUR name and address) and, because of NEW state guidelines, verification of household income (for example: paystub, W-2, Medicaid card, TANF, SNAP, WIC, SSI).

  10. VCU Health CMH Star Service Team Member of the Year for 2018

    W. Scott Burnette, CEO, VCU Health Community Memorial Hospital presented Nellie Hawkins, Licensed Practical Nurse, the VCU Health CMH STAR Service Team Member of the Year Award for 2017. There to congratulate Nellie was (left to right) Mellisa Black, Acute Care Nursing Director, and Linda Norman, RN, Assistant Director of Medical-Surgical Telemetry.

    Nellie has been employed at VCU Health CMH for 31 years.  Her dedication and work ethic are just two of the qualities that make her a wonderful asset to VCU Health CMH.  The nomination form submitted on her behalf stated, “One of my very close friends had a scare with her child and she was admitted to CMH overnight for observation.  The couple was so complimentary of every staff member they came into contact with, however, one really stood out.  The parents were emotionally and physically drained.  The nurse caring for the baby told the mom and dad that when she got off from work she would come back to the room and rock the baby so they could rest, grab dinner, and a change of clothes.  The mom had tears in her eyes telling this story.  It meant so much to them that she offered and they knew she meant every word.  They said that this nurse was focused on their child’s wellbeing and it was obvious she was passionate about caring for babies.  This nurse was Nellie Hawkins.”  “What an excellent example of STAR Service! Nellie’s dedication to her patient and family made a tremendous impact on them showing how much she cared.  I am so proud to have a nurse of her caliber working with me and being a role model to her peers.”

    In addition to the award certificate, Nellie received a STAR Service Team Member of the Year lapel pin, a gift certificate worth $200.00 for hotel accommodations to any location of her choice and $300.00 of spending money.

  11. GROW CAPITAL JOBS WORKS TO BOOST OUR REGION'S ECONOMY

    As robust economic growth returns to the U.S., few Virginians realize that economic growth across our state continues to lag.  While most areas have now recovered all of the jobs lost during the Great Recession, statewide economic growth is far lower to that being experienced in other states.  In fact, in 2016, Virginia grew only 0.6% - ranking us 40th in the nation.  As a state used to economic prosperity, such data should be alarming. Even here in the Richmond area where the economy appears strong, we are performing just below the national average.

    The reasons for this lagging growth are many – fewer federal contracts, less defense-related spending, and population declines in many Virginia localities.  At the core of these declines however, is the loss of higher paying jobs in the state.  In fact, last year, for the fourth year in a row, Virginia saw net out-migration of talented people to other states where better job opportunities exist.  When job growth does occur, it is often in lower-paying jobs, which reduces economic growth.

    Fortunately, our elected leaders have recognized that to reverse these trends, we need to take a hard look at the way we have traditionally done business in Virginia by encouraging cooperation, instead of competition, among our localities to tackle the many challenges our state faces. 

    In 2016, the General Assembly enacted the Virginia Growth and Opportunity Act, also known as GO Virginia, to provide incentives for cooperation to boost the state’s economy.  Since that time, working through regional councils like our own GROW Capital Jobs, hundreds of business and community leaders have now started to develop innovative projects to again accelerate economic growth across Virginia.

    GROW Capital Jobs has been working for the past year to first identify challenges to economic growth in our region and then prioritize the opportunities to reverse those trends.  That study identified innovation and entrepreneurship in the areas of advanced manufacturing, life/biosciences, and logistics as keys to our region’s economic future.  Projects to spur the development of new small businesses, develop new industrial sites, and to focus worker-training programs around these key industries, are now being advanced. Recently, both the VCU Pharmaceutical Commercialization Program andtheCommonwealth Center for Advanced Manufacturing Apprentice Academy were approved for funding by the GO Virginia Board. These projects have the potential to stimulate job creation and economic development throughout our entire region. Over the coming months, GROW Capital Jobs will continue to seek out projects that that will benefit our region and meet the council’s funding criteria.

    Already, over $5 million of state incentive funds have been approved statewide since December to advance projects to help create more higher-paying jobs through regional cooperation, and additional grants are expected in the near future. These funds have also leveraged over $9 million dollars in additional monies that augment the state’s initial investments.

    Similar to the fact that these economic problems didn’t emerge overnight, the solutions will also take time. It will take years of focused determination and additional funding to put Virginia’s economy back on the right track.

    Over the coming weeks, it will be important that members of the General Assembly, along with Governor Northam, hear about how to continue the good work of GO Virginia.  Such additional funding is necessary to sustain the progress we have already made and to restore Virginia’s competitiveness. Go to www.govirginia.org to learn more and to convey your support for the program. 

    William H. Goodwin Jr., Chair, and John A. Luke Jr., Vice Chair, GROW Capital Jobs Council of GO Virginia, Info@growcapitaljobs.org.

    Goodwin is Chairman Emeritus of CCA Industries, and The Riverstone Group, whose holdings include Kiawah Island Golf Resort, The Jefferson Hotel, Sea Pines Resort and Dynamic Brands. Luke is Non-Executive Chair of West Rock, a leading manufacturer of packaging and paper products.

    GO Virginia is a business-led initiative to provide state incentives for localities to collaborate to strengthen our private sector economy by increasing higher paying jobs.

    Region Four, or as it is called GROW Capital Jobs, includes the counties of Charles City, Chesterfield, Dinwiddie, Goochland, Greensville, Hanover, Henrico, New Kent, Powhatan, Prince George, Surry, and Sussex; and the cities of Colonial Heights, Emporia, Hopewell, Petersburg, and Richmond. The Region Four Council is led by William Goodwin Jr. as chair and John Luke Jr. as vice chair and supported by the GROW Capital Jobs Foundation, led by Mark Hourigan, Chair of Region Four GROW Capital Jobs Foundation and Chief Executive Officer Wilson Flohr.

  12. AmeriGas Bestows School Days Check

    L-R in front: Corey Lee, Autumn Dickens, Zahria Aziz, Jhamanus Futrell, Caleb Moseley, Roy Claiborne; Back: Principal Nicole Coker, Guidance Counselor Kendra Floyd and Amerigas Representative  Amy Moseley

    Greensville Elementary School participates in “School Days”, a program sponsored by AmeriGas where you can turn your propane bills into cash for our school.  Schools can receive up to $2,000 per school year to purchase books, computers, equipment and more with the AmeriGas School Days Program.

    Customers of AmeriGas in the area can drop their vouchers  off by the office, send them in with their payment or give them to the school office, Attention Kendra Floyd. They can also be mailed to your local office at 1141 North Main Street, Emporia, VA  23847.  The vouchers come in the envelope with you bill. AmeriGas donates back to the school  .02 cents for each gallon delivered and turned in.

  13. Jackson-Feild Mourns the Passing of Robert G. Neuville

    Robert Neuville recently departed this earth but his legacy lives in the lives of the children he helped at Jackson-Feild and in the Neurotherapy/biofeedback program he helped to refine and grow.

    Robert was born and raised in Wisconsin. He enlisted in the Marine Corp and fought in the Korean War. Returning home he attended and graduated from the University of Richmond after which he has a successful 25 year career with AT&T.

    Robert returned to college and received a Master’s in Social Work degree from Norfolk State University. He stated a second career as a professor at Norfolk State and working with underserved children in Norfolk.

    He became a pioneer in the field of Neurotherapy/Neurofeedback. Neurofeedback began on the late 1950’s. It focuses on brain activity and uses and EEG. Robert was passionate about the treatment of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and revolutionized its treatment.

    Jackson-Feild began using Neurotherapy in the 1990’s to help treat children who have suffered severe emotional trauma. Robert and his business partner and beloved friend Patty Graydon began providing this service for the children at JFBHS. They made a meaningful difference to countless children for years.  Robert’s health began to fail and he and Patty discontinued their efforts. Dr. John Griffin, local neuro-psychologist has picked up where they left off.

    His goal was to depart this world leaving it a better place than he found it. He did through the lives of the children he helped at Jackson-Feld.

  14. Brian Trent Clary

    Brian Trent Clary, died Tuesday February 20, 2018, at his home in Hope Mills, N.C.

    Trent was born on December 8, 1969, to Eileen Hallingshead Clary and Roger Clary. He was a talented professional musician, specializing in Christian music, and along with his parents was a longtime member of Faymont Baptist Church in Fayetteville. He was preceded in death by an uncle, James E. Hallingshead.

    In addition to his parents, Trent is survived by a brother, Herbert Balquet Jr., of North Augusta, S.C., an aunt, Nancy Ann H. Mckee and her husband Leonard, of Fayetteville, uncles, Rev. Arthur David Hallingshead and his wife Glenda of Palmyra, VA, Ray Justice and his wife Nancy of Gasburg, VA, and Delaine Wilkey of Marietta, S.C.

    Graveside Services will be held Wednesday, February 28, 2018 at 1:00 P.M. at the Pleasant Hill Christian Church Cemetery in Gasburg, VA with Pastor James Cunningham officiating. The family will receive friends at Wrenn, Clarke, & Hagan Funeral and Cremation Service from 11:00 A.M. until 12:00 Noon Wednesday before the service.

    Online condolences may be left at wrennclarkehagan.com.

  15. New VP of Practice Management & Business Development for VCU Health CMH

    Brenda T. Palmore, DHA, FACMPE, FASPR

    South Hill – VCU Health Community Memorial Hospital in South Hill would like to announce that Dr. Brenda T. Palmore is the new Vice President of Practice Management and Business Development.

    The VP of Practice Management and Business Development will have administrative oversight to the operations side of all CMH physician practices and hospital based physician services.  In addition, the role will involve the development of new regional practice and business opportunities for VCU Health CMH.  The role will also entail coordinating any new VCU Health System regional population/community health initiatives developed in our service area. 

    Dr. Palmore has been employed with VCU Health CMH since 1999. She has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with a concentration in Management from Longwood University and a Master of Business Administration from Averett University. She received her Doctorate of Health Care Administration and Leadership from the Medical University of South Carolina.

    Dr. Palmore is a Fellow of the American College of Medical Practice Executives and a Fellow of the Association of Staff Physician Recruiters (FASPR).  Additionally, she earned Lean Six Sigma Certification, Yellow Belt.

    Dr. Palmore was born at Community Memorial Hospital (now VCU Health CMH) and raised in the South Hill, VA area. She still resides in South Hill with her husband, Wilson, and her seven year old daughter, Addison. She is also very active in the community volunteering with the following local organizations:  Board Member, Lake Country Young Professionals; Board Member, First Christian School; Board Member, FEAT (Families Embracing Autism Together); Mecklenburg County Relay for Life/American Cancer Society; Co-Organizer Annual Adopt-a-Child Christmas program through social services/HALO.

    Dr. Palmore resides in South Hill, VA

  16. Co-Developers of Meherrin Solar Project to Host Public Meeting

    (Emporia, VA)-Co-Developers of the Meherrin Solar Project, Brookfield Renewable and SolUnesco, have extended an invitation to the public and local media outlets to attend a meeting taking place on February 27th from 6-8pm at the Brink Ruritan Club in Emporia (5926 Brink Rd. Emporia, Va.)

    The meeting is being held to offer a forum for the public to learn more about the project and the benefits it offers to the community, as well as to ask any questions.

    Brookfield Renewable Stakeholder Relations Manager, Brian Noonan said, “Brookfield Renewable has a reputation and track record of successfully integrating ourselves as community partners in the areas where we operate. There are tremendous benefits to this project, and we look forward to discussing these benefits with local residents as well as answering any questions or working to address any concerns that they may have.”

    SolUnesco Co-Founder & CEO Francis Hodsoll said, “Over the last year, we’ve worked with local landowners to locate the project and utilize setbacks and buffers that will ensure that neighbors enjoy the same view before and after the project is operational.  We believe the Meherrin Solar project will provide many benefits to the community including jobs, tax revenue and revenue for local businesses. . We are excited to talk about the benefits with the local community as well as answer any questions.”

    If you are interested in the project and have further questions, Noonan and Hodsoll are encouraging you to visit MeherrinSolarProject.com to learn more, or contact Francis Hodsoll at (703) 672-5097 or e-mail him at info@solunesco.com.

  17. SVCC Regional Job Fair in Emporia

    Southside Virginia Community College (SVCC) and Greensville County/City of Emporia community partners will once again host a Regional Job Fair at Southside Virginia Education Center (SVEC) at 1300 Greensville County Circle, Emporia, Virginia.  Crater Regional Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) and First Media Radio , WPTM, WWDW, WYTT, WDLZ, WTRG, WSMY, WWDR  will support this exciting event.

    This event will be open to the public from 2:00 pm until 4:30 pm on Wednesday, March 28, 2018.  All job seekers are welcome during this timeframe.

    This Regional Job Fair has invited over 70 employers who have participated in the past.  Job seekers have even been hired “on the spot”!  Employers who have participated in this job fair previously include: Georgia Pacific, Oran Safety Glass, Toll Brothers, Boars Head, Virginia Staffing Services, ProLabor Temps, Southside Virginia Regional Medical Center, GEO Group, Greensville Correctional, etc.

    SVCC will host a private luncheon for participating employers who have open job vacancies.  Hiring employers will enjoy networking with other local business and industry.

    Job seekers should come dressed to impress with several copies of quality resumes.  Job seekers who have earned a WorkKeys Career Readiness Certificate (CRC) can be admitted 15 minutes early at 1:45 pm with photo ID and copy of WorkKeys CRC.

    To learn more about how to earn a WorkKeys Career Readiness Certificate, please contact SVCC Workforce Development.

    Employer space is limited! Deadline for employers to reserve a booth is March 16, 2018.  Employers who have job vacancies may reserve a booth by contacting SVCC Workforce Development at 434-949-1026 /angela.mcclintock@southside.edu or 434-949-6614/Yolanda.hines@southside.edu

  18. KAINE JOINS COLLEAGUES TO INTRODUCE BILL THAT EXPANDS FUNDING FOR STATES FIGHTING OPIOID EPIDEMIC

    WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Tim Kaine (D-VA) joined Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) to introduce the Opioid Response Enhancement Act to help states better fight the opioid epidemic that has put a strain on communities in Virginia and across the country. This bill would expand a grant program that was created as part of the bipartisan 21st Century Cures Act of 2017 and ensure states have access to additional funding for the next five years under this program.
     
    “This bill will help expand federal funding for states fighting the opioid epidemic, providing much-needed support for Virginians combatting addiction,” Kaine said. “The federal government has an important role to play in addressing this crisis that is hurting communities across the country.”
     
    In 2017, Congress provided $1 billion over two years of additional funding for state efforts to combat the opioid epidemic under the bipartisan 21st Century Cures Act. As the opioid epidemic continues to strain local resources, Congress needs to continue to fund this important program to help communities combat this crisis beyond 2019, so that states, localities and tribal communities have adequate resources to help prevent and treat substance use disorders and addiction.
     
    The Opioid Response Enhancement Act would provide an additional investment of $12 billion over five years for the State Targeted Opioid Response (STR) Grant, including a new Enhancement Grant for states that have been hit especially hard by the epidemic, including those with high opioid mortality rates. It would also provide an additional $1.5 billion for the remainder of Fiscal Year 2018 under new resources made available in the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018.
     
    Kaine has been a leader in the Senate on efforts to address the opioid epidemic and support disease research. In December, Kaine co-sponsored the The International Narcotics Trafficking Emergency Response by Detecting Incoming Contraband with Technology (INTERDICT) Act to provide U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) tools including hi-tech chemical screening devices to help detect and interdict fentanyl and other illicit synthetic opioids. Kaine has pushed for funding to support health education initiatives to combat the opioid epidemic in vulnerable communities in Virginia. In October, Kaine introduced the Combating the Opioid Epidemic Act, which would invest $45 billion for prevention, detection, surveillance and treatment of opioids and opioid addiction. 
     
    In addition to Kaine, Shaheen, and Baldwin, Senators Maggie Hassan (D-NH), Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND), Tina Smith (D-MN), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Joe Manchin (D-WV), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Bill Nelson (D-FL), Angus King (I-ME), Ben Cardin (D-MD), Jon Tester (D-MT), and Tom Udall (D-NM).
     
    Specifically, the bill would:
     
    • Provide $10 billion over five years for the current STR Grant program under 21st Century Cures Actbeginning in FY19.
    • Add a new STR Enhancement Grant for $2 billion over five years for at least ten states and tribal entities with high needs, including high opioid mortality rates, to enhance and expand opioid abuse efforts under the STR program.
    • Include Tribal entities as eligible for the STR Grants, funded by a 10 percent set aside.
    • Require the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) to provide technical assistance to states and tribes through the Tribal Training and Technical Assistance Center, for application procedures, outreach and support to underserved communities, and data collection.
    • Provide flexibility to allow states and tribes to use some of the funding to help address other substance use issues that are similar or substantial public health threats, in addition to carrying out opioid abuse efforts.
    • ·         Direct states to prioritize providing funding directly to local community organizations and counties to ensure that local leaders have access to critical resources to help them address areas of unmet need.
  19. Athletes’ Artwork Scores Big at ‘Abstract’ Exhibit

  20. As College Tuition Rises, Senate Panel Kills Bill Mandating Public Input

  21. Virginia Prisoners a Step Closer to Free Feminine Hygiene Products

  22. Dr. Grace Harris Is Remembered for ‘Her Spirit of Hope’

  23. Vida Rodgester Fajna

    Vida Rodgester Fajna, 73, passed away Thursday, February 22, 2018. She was the daughter of the late Charlie Lee and Mabel Rodgester and was also preceded in death by two sisters, Dot Hobbs and Nellie Bradley. Mrs. Fajna is survived by her husband, Wayne Fajna; daughter, Kathy Fajna; brother, Cliff Rodgester and wife, Jane; two sisters, Emma Bradley and Linda Tuck and husband, Steve; and a large loving extended family including sisters-in-law, brothers-in-law; cousins and numerous nieces, nephews and great-nieces and great-nephews. She also leaves behind her beloved family of furbabies.

    The funeral service will be held 2 p.m. Monday, February 26 at Zion Baptist Church, 974 Zion Church Rd, Emporia, Interment will follow in the church cemetery. The family will receive friends at church prior to the service beginning at 12:30 p.m.

    Online condolences may be shared with the family at www.owenfh.com.

  24. Senate Panel Votes to Ban ‘Lunch Shaming’ in Virginia

  25. Virginia Teenagers May Rescue Volunteer Fire Departments

  26. Delegate Tyler Sponsors Bill to Protect Correctional Officers

    Correctional Officers from across the Commonwealth gathered for a Press Conference and lobbying day on Capitol Hill in Richmond to Voice their concerns for increased salaries, improved working conditions and officer’s turnover along with Delegate Roslyn Tyler (Sussex) and Delegate John Bell (Loudon). Delegate Tyler’s District includes the following state correctional centers in Greensville County, Sussex I and II, Deerfield, Lunenburg and the private prison in Lawrenceville.  HB 1418 introduced by Delegate Tyler for the Creation of Procedural Guarantee Act for Correction Officers has passed the House of Delegate’s and has now crossed over to the Senate. Additionally, she was recently appointed to serve on the House of Appropriations, Sub-Committee on Public Safety which funding allocations are recommended for public safety officers including the state police, sheriffs, deputies, emergency services and state correctional officers.

    In the budget released this week, the Correctional Officers are winners. The House of Appropriations budget includes a $1,100 salary adjustment in January 2019 and 2% increase in salary in July 2019 and 1% merit pay in July, 2019. This funding will increase the starting salaries of Correctional Officers to approximately $33,000. This is one giant step towards funding correction officers for the work they do in protecting our community from harm and danger.

    The officers, Donald Baylor, the NCPSO representative and I have addressed this issue for a long time and we are pleased of our accomplishment. Our work is not over. The final budget has not been passed by the House and the Senate. The two budgets will be in conference before final passage for negotiations. Therefore, contact the House and Senate Conferee to maintain funding in the budget for final approval.  Please feel free to contact me in Richmond at 804 698-1075.

  27. Delegate Tyler is a Member of the Sportsman's Caucus

    Pictured from the left:  Delegate Barry Knight, Senator Emmett Hanger, Senator John Cosgrove, Delegate James Edmonds, Delegate Robert Bloxom, Delegate Roslyn Tyler, Delegate Tony Wilt, Delegate Buddy Fowler, Jr., and Delegate John McGuire

    Delegate Roslyn Tyler is a member of the General Assembly Sportsman Caucus in Richmond, Virginia. Pictured are members Senators and Delegates who enjoy hunting and outdoor recreation over the Commonwealth. Each Thursday morning at 7:00 AM the caucus meets for updates on certain topics such as Chesapeake Bay Foundation, World Life Foundation, Bear and Deer hunting and proposed sportsman rights legislation HB564, HB1328 and HB1414 all passed through the House and are in the Senate for vote.  If you are in Richmond, feel free to stop by and see us in room E321 in the Pocahontas Building on Main Street.  Delegate Tyler can be reached via email atDelRTyler@house.virginia.gov or (804) 698-1075.

  28. Attorneys Launch Group to Boost Free Legal Services to Low Income Clients

    SUFFOLK, Va., Feb. 20, 2018  – Virginia Legal Aid Society is pleased to announce the creation of the Suffolk Pro Bono Task Force, a  group of influential and successful attorneys who are recruiting their colleagues to provide volunteer, free legal help to VLAS clients.

    The attorney members of the task force are calling, writing and visiting with other attorneys in the area to encourage them to take on pro bono cases for VLAS clients. In addition to this work, the attorney members of the task force all accept representation of VLAS clients on a pro bono basis. 

    Private attorneys who agree to work pro bono allow VLAS to help many additional low income clients who otherwise would not be able to hire an attorney for representation in their civil legal case. VLAS staff attorneys in Danville, Lynchburg, Farmville and Suffolk close about 3,000 cases each year; pro bono attorneys close an additional 150 or so cases for VLAS clients. VLAS seeks to greatly increase the numbers of attorneys providing pro bono representation to its clients, and the Suffolk Task Force members are an invaluable asset in this endeavor.

    The Suffolk Task Force members are:

    • Nicole Harrell
    • Jeanette Ojeda
    • Andrew Page
    • Richard Railey
    • Whitney Saunders
    • Martin Speroni
    • Daniel Vinson
       

    For More Information Contact: Kristine Smith, Pro Bono Director (434) 846-1326, ext. 413

    Virginia Legal Aid Society is a nonprofit law firm that provides legal information, advice and representation in civil cases to underprivileged individuals and families. Since 1977, VLAS has been the only institutional provider of such services in Central, Southside, and Western Tidewater Virginia. VLAS attorneys and paralegals use legal skills to solve problems in housing, access to health care, income and public benefits, family issues, consumer lending and assets. Our mission is to resolve serious legal problems of vulnerable people, promote economic and family stability, reduce poverty through effective legal assistance, and to champion equal justice. For more information on our services, to get involved, or to make a donation, please visit us at www.vlas.org and follow us on Facebook, www.facebook.com/VaLegalAidSociety, and Twitter @VA_LegalAid

  29. Margaret Ann Turner Conley

    Margaret Ann Turner Conley, 76, of Kilmarnock, Virginia  passed away Tuesday, February 20, 2018.  She was born June 12, 1941 in Emporia, Virginia,  daughter to the late Joe Turner and Josephine Sopko Turner.  She retired after 20 years with VIMCO and enjoyed her retirement from gardening to traveling along with spending time with her children, grandchildren, family and friends.

    She is preceded in death by her husband of 51 years, Samuel Roy Conley for whom she greatly missed.  She is survived by her two sons, David Lee Conley of Rockville, Va. and Jeffrey Scott Conley and wife Diana Lynn of Glen Allen, Va.; four grandchildren, Curtis Lee Conley and wife Laura, Lindsey Paige Conley, Jessica Blair Conley and Amber Lynn Conley and two great grandchildren Cason and Adalyn Conley as well as her two favorite grand dogs Gypsy and Panda.

    Mass will be held 11:00 a. m. Monday, February 26, 2018 at St. Francis de Sales Catholic Church, Kilmarnock, Va.  Interment will follow the service at Morattico Baptist Church Cemetery, Kilmarnock, Va.  The family will receive friends 2:00 to 4:00 p. m. Sunday, February 25th at Currie Funeral Home, Kilmarnock, Va.

  30. Margaret Lee Williams Edwards

    Margaret Lee Williams Edwards of Greensville County, died February 19, 2018. She was the daughter of the late George Thomas Williams and Olive Rawlings Williams. In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her husband Raymond Floyd Edwards; brother, Reeves Williams; three sisters, Frances Wagner, Ida Barnes, and Audrey Blalock.

    She was a homemaker and lifetime member of Monumental United Methodist Church. “Maggie”, as she was called by her grandchildren and great grandchildren, was a devoted wife, mother, grandmother, great grandmother, and sister. She is survived by two daughters, Merilyn E. Newsome (Wesley) of Roanoke Rapids, NC and Judy E. Rushing (Leon) of Cary, NC; sister, Agnes Murrill of Newport  News, VA; five grandchildren, Cynthia Browder, Ray Poole, Tripp Nunnally, Bryan Rushing, Megan Hare; and eight great grandchildren.

    A service will be held at Monumental United Methodist Church on Saturday, February 24, 2018 at 2:00 P.M. with Rev. Rick Franklin and Rev. Rachel Plemmons officiating. Interment will follow at Emporia Cemetery. A reception will be held at the church one hour prior to the service.

    The family would like to offer a special thanks to the staff of Greensville Manor.

    In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Monumental United Methodist Church/Organ Fund.

    Online condolences may be made at www.echolsfuneralhome.com.

  31. KAINE CO-SPONSORS BIPARTISAN CHILDHOOD CANCER BILL

    Bill complements Kaine’s Gabriella Miller Kids First Research Act to further expand pediatric cancer research and treatment 

    WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Tim Kaine, a member of the Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, joined a bipartisan group of colleagues as a co-sponsor of the Childhood Cancer Survivorship, Treatment, Access, and Research (STAR) Act. This bipartisan legislation will advance pediatric cancer research and child-focused cancer treatments, while also improving childhood cancer surveillance and providing resources for survivors and those impacted by childhood cancer. 

    “While we have made advances and breakthroughs in many fields, childhood cancer treatment has been left behind,” said Senator Kaine. "The Childhood Cancer STAR Act would help us right that wrong so one day we can ensure that no family has to lose a child to this terrible disease.” 

    Childhood cancer research has progressed in recent years, but cancer is still the leading cause of death by disease past infancy among children in the United States, according to NIH’s National Cancer Institute (NCI). In 2017,  NCI estimated that nationwide, more than 10,000 children and adolescents up to 14 years of age would be diagnosed with cancer and that more than 1,190 would die from the disease.

    Senator Kaine has consistently supported legislation funding pediatric cancer research. In 2014, he championed the bipartisan Gabriella Miller Kids First Research Act to support pediatric medical research at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), which passed Congress and was signed into law by President Obama. The legislation honors the memory of Leesburg, Virginia’s Gabriella Miller, who was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor the size of a walnut at age 9. He also voted for the RACE for Children Act of 2017 to support the development of innovative and promising cancer drugs for children.

    The Childhood Cancer Survivorship, Treatment, Access, and Research (STAR) Act would:  

    • Expand opportunities for childhood cancer research
    • Improve efforts to identify and track childhood cancer incidences
    • Enhance the quality of life for childhood cancer survivors
    • Ensure pediatric expertise at the National Institutes of Health (NIH)

    Expanding Opportunities for Childhood Cancer Research:  Due to the relatively small population of children with cancer and the geographic distance between these children, researching childhood cancer can be challenging.  The Childhood Cancer STAR Act would authorize the National Cancer Institute (NCI) to expand existing efforts to collect biospecimens for childhood cancer patients enrolled in NCI-sponsored clinical trials in order to maintain relevant clinical, biological, and demographic information on all children, adolescents, and young adults with cancer.

    Improving Childhood Cancer Surveillance:  Building upon previous efforts, this bill would authorize grants to state cancer registries to identify and track incidences of child, adolescent, and young adult cancer.  This funding would be used to identify and train reporters of childhood cancer cases, secure infrastructure to ensure early the reporting and capture of child cancer incidences, and support the collection of cases into a national childhood cancer registry.

    Improving Quality of Life for Childhood Cancer Survivors:  Unfortunately, even after beating cancer, as many as two-thirds of survivors suffer from late effects of their disease or treatment, including secondary cancers and organ damage. This legislation would enhance research on the late effects of childhood cancers, including a study on insurance coverage and payment of care for childhood cancer survivors; improve collaboration among providers so that doctors are better able to care for this population as they age; and establish a new pilot program to begin to explore innovative models of care for childhood cancer survivors. 

    Ensuring Pediatric Expertise at the National Institutes of Health (NIH): The Childhood Cancer STAR Act would require the inclusion of at least one pediatric oncologist on the National Cancer Advisory Board and would improve childhood health reporting requirements to include pediatric cancer.

  32. Exhibits Commemorating WW I Reflect Contemporary Concerns

  33. Activists Oppose Drilling Off Virginia’s Coast

  34. Aubrey Neil Temple

    Aubrey Neil Temple of Emporia, died February 20, 2018. He was the son of the late Johnnie Mercer Temple and Olivia Clyde Ferguson Temple. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his wife Sarah Klugel Temple.

    He was the General Manager of Sadler Travel Plaza for 40 years and a member of Calvary Baptist Church. He is survived by two sons, Aubrey Neil Temple, Jr. (Nancy) of Emporia and Thomas M. Temple, Sr. of Emporia; brother, Glenn Temple (Arlene) of Valdosta, GA; four grandchildren, Thomas Mason Temple, Jr.(Amanda) of Emporia, Star Temple Nienaber (Brent) of Denver, CO, Nicholas Evan Temple (Margaret) of Emporia, and Jonathan Eli Temple (fiancé Brittanie Jones) of Emporia; seven great grandchildren, Cassidy, Nicholas, Gracey, Sarah Breelyn, Easton Neil, Naomi, and Eli.

    A memorial service will be held at Calvary Baptist Church on Friday, February 23, 2018 at 1:00 P.M. with Rev. Andy Cain and Rev. Brad Barbour officiating. Family will receive visitors on Thursday, February 22, 2018 from 6:00 P.M. to 8:00 P.M. at the residence of Aubrey Neil Temple, Jr., 312 Miles Circle, Emporia, VA 23847.

    In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Greensville Volunteer Rescue Squad, 513 South Main Street, Emporia, VA.

    Online condolences may be made at www.echolsfuneralhome.com.

  35. Sherry Woodruff Gay

    Sherry Woodruff Gay, 55, of Emporia, passed away Sunday, February 18, 2018. She was the daughter of the late Cecil and Lilly Woodruff. She is survived by her husband, William Richard Gay; son, Christopher Michael Gay and fiancée , Amanda Candice Harris; two grandsons, Christopher Michael Gay, Jr. and Jace Alexander Gay and a brother, Albert Cecil Woodruff, Jr. “Bo”.
    The family will receive friends 1-2 p.m. Saturday, February 24 at Owen Funeral Home, 303 S. Halifax Rd., Jarratt, Virginia. In lieu of flowers, the family requests contributions be made to the funeral home to assist with final expenses. Online condolences may be shared with the family at www.owenfh.com.
  36. Comcast Completes Upgrades in Emporia

    X1 On Demand: Browse thousands of On Demand TV shows, movies and more across X1

    Recently Comcast custoemrs in Emporia got letters in the mail with news that we would all need to replace our cable boxes and cable modems. This letter was the first notice that long needed upgrades were coming to Emporia (and Greensville County)

    It has been a few months since those letters were received, and all of us with Comcast service got to change the boxes. In that time you may have noticed new channels and services. If you opted to sign up for the HD package, you have noticed that there are many more choices there.

    Comcast has completed the network enhancements and now offers an all-digital platform in Emporia.  Local residents now have access to more than 70 new HD channels (including all local broadcasters – WTVR/CBS HD, WRIC/ABC HD, WWBT/NBC HD, WRLH/FOX HD, WUPV/CW HD and WCVE/PBS HD – NBC Sports HD, ESPN HD, NFL Network HD, Bravo HD and HBO HD, among others); the latest selection of On Demand movies, TV shows and more; faster Internet speeds (the speed of Comcast’s popular Blast! internet service increased from 150 to 200 Mbps, at no additional cost); and Comcast’s X1 platform.

     

    Voice Remote: Speak and see – we’re constantly adding new commands to the voice remote, include “Restart this program (if you happen to jump in during the middle of show or movie) and “what song is playing?” (X1 will analyze and provide artist/song names for any tune from a TV show, movie or even commercial)

    X1 uses IP technology and the cloud to integrate the world’s largest collection of video with social media features and an expanding selection of interactive tailed-for-TV apps (Netflix, YouTube, Pandora,  iHeartRadio, Twitter, Facebook, sports, weather, traffic and more), as well as web content, smart search and voice technology and personalization tools – all in one easy-to-navigate, modern viewing experience.

    Outside the home, Xfinity Internet customers have complimentary access to nearly 18 million Wi-Fi hotspots nationwide, including dozens of outdoor hotspots in the Emporia area along Main Street near shopping destinations and restaurants; at the Emporia Shopping Center; along Atlantic Street; and near the Greensville County High School.

    “We are proud to continue investing in our network to bring our customers in Emporia more choice and more speed,” said Mary McLaughlin, Senior Vice President of Comcast’s Beltway Region.  “All of our services are designed to work together, making it easier than ever for our customers to stay connected to the things they love. Combined with our recent launches of Xfinity Mobile and Xfinity xFi, and our partnerships with Netflix, Pandora and You Tube on our X1 platform, we’re continuing to add significant value for customers across our product portfolio.”

    YouTube on X1: Access to apps like YouTube, Netflix, iHeartRadio and Pandora right on X1.

    Editor's Note: In the spirit of full disclosure, I have been a Comcast Customer since the company started operating in Emporia; before that, I was an Adelphia customer. I use my Comcast high speed internet to connect to the server where Emporia News is hosted. I also utilize the wi-fi hotspots, and can stay coneted to wi-fi on my phone along most of Main Street.

  37. Two Bills May Save Babies’ Lives

  38. Delegate Aims to Rein in ‘Predatory Loans,’ to No Avail

  39. Citizen Groups Voice Concerns Over Medicaid Expansion

  40. Joseph “Joe” McCrae Allen

    Joseph “Joe” McCrae Allen of Emporia, died Sunday, February 18, 2018. He was born in Franklinton, N.C. and was the son of the late Archie Brown Allen and Cornelia Barbour Allen. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his first wife, Peggy Dutton Allen; two brothers, A.B. Allen and Bill Allen; and sister, Cornelia Allen Hite.

    He was a retired supervisor at Weldon Mills. He is survived by his wife, Rachael Wall Allen; two daughters, Karen A. Epting (Patrick) of Trinity, FL, and Kelli A. Harrell (David) of Jarratt, VA; stepdaughter, Darlene Woodard (Dennis) of Branchville, VA; stepson, Bruce Acree (Sharon) of Jarratt, VA; six grandchildren, McCrae Bennett (Samantha) of Tampa, FL, Bryan Murphy, Jr.(Allyssa) of Gaston, NC, Keith Harrell of Jarratt, VA, Andrew Acree of Emporia, VA, Scott Acree of Jarratt, VA, and Austin Falwell of Emporia, VA; and great grandchild, Liam Murphy of Gaston, NC.

    A memorial service will be held in the chapel of Echols Funeral Home on Wednesday, February 21, 2018 at 6:30 P.M., with Pastor Troy Green of Grace Community Fellowship Church officiating. Family will receive visitors, following the service at daughter, Kelli A. Harrell’s residence, 11330 Henry Road, Jarratt, VA.

    In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Grace Community Fellowship Church, 8014 Little Lowground Road, Emporia, VA 23847.

    Online condolences may be made at www.echolsfuneralhome.com.

     

  41. SVCC Welding Students Enjoy Learning

    Two women, claiming each other as kin, take Southside Virginia Community College welding class together at the Lake Country Advanced Knowledge Center in South Hill.  Heather McComb (Left to Right), John Evans, Instructor, and Diane Boaz make quite a team in the welding facility of SVCC in South Hill. 

    With a total of three women currently enrolled in the Lake Country Advanced Knowledge Center,  Southside Virginia Community College’s Arc Welding I class, intergenerational learning and nontraditional are not simply “buzzwords.”  SVCC instructor John Evans’ class at Lake Country Knowledge Center in South Hill notes that two of the women weld in booths side by side, but, in age, they are 50 years apart. 

    These women enjoy learning together and supporting the efforts of one another.  And, it goes without saying that women enrolled in a welding class are not the norm.  Typically, one thinks of men as welders; and, women in this field are the minority.  But wearing their protective clothing of a cap, helmet, coat, gloves and boots, they fit right in.

    Diane Boaz and Heather McComb are both from Lunenburg County.  Another interesting thing about Diane and Heather is that they are grandmother and granddaughter “by choice.”  They found each other when Heather and her family moved across the road from Diane several years ago.  From the beginning the two were of the same mind. Heather said, with emotion, that she wouldn’t be where she is today if it weren’t for Diane and her husband, David.

    The Boaz’s have a farm where Diane has been actively working for some years.  Heather has helped with the cows and the farm duties.  For both of them, welding is something they can use to keep the equipment working and in good shape.  Heather will be graduating from high school in May and hopes to find work that offers a great deal of variety.  She knows she doesn’t want to sit behind a desk and really enjoys working outdoors. Ultimately her goal is to farm full-time. Her thinking is that welding skills will give her an employment edge.

    A great deal of variety is what Diane has in her work history and a significant amount has been in work that is nontraditional for women.  She once applied for a position as fire fighter for the City of Charlotte, North Carolina.  Unfortunately, she was an inch too short to qualify, but she was the first woman to ever apply.  While her employment in a hospital operating room was more traditional, she was again in the minority as a Pinkerton Security Guard in Charlotte and as a member of a field surveying team in Mecklenburg County. 

    Diane began welding in 2015 in two classes also at Lake Country Advanced Knowledge Center.  She heard about the offering through Heather’s uncle and took the classes with him.  Heather came to observe.  By January 2018 Heather was enrolled as well and Diane signed up to hone her skills. 

    Both women have high praises for Evans, “He is a wonderful, patient, kind person and a great instructor.”

    For Diane Boaz, welding is more than just a skill to be used to maintain the tillage tools and other farm equipment.  “It means being more self-reliant and self-sufficient as a woman.”  And it certainly isn’t every woman who receives a Lincoln Stick Welder and a welding table as Christmas gifts from her husband!

  42. Virginia Honors MLK with Community Conversations

  43. MLK III Speaks Out Against Gun Violence

  44. At Session’s Midpoint, Black Lawmakers Hail Success

  45. House Panel Next to Consider Senate Coal Ash Legislation

  46. Hockey Player Has Chance for Own ‘Miracle on Ice’

  47. Homeland’s Record Spending Boosts Economy, Highlights VA’s Film Incentive Programs

  48. New Law Would Bring Public Meetings into the Digital Age

  49. After Shooting, Democrats and Republicans Mourn But Disagree Over Guns

  50. ​​Schools Still Need State’s OK to Open Before Labor Day

  51. At Session’s Midpoint, 40% of Bills Are Still Alive

  52. Virginia May Create Ombudsman to Help with Student Loans

  53. High Schools May Offer American Sign Language As Foreign Language Credit

  54. Bill Would Provide More Resources to Help Those With Spinal Cord Injuries

  55. Civil Liberties Groups Oppose Agreement on Theft Threshold

  56. W.K. Kellogg Foundation Reinvests a Second $1,000,000 to Continue Support for Unique Dual-Generation School Readiness Initiative

    VECF-led effort builds communities’ capacity to support parents & young children

    Richmond, Va. (Jan. 25, 2018) – The W.K. Kellogg Foundation of Battle Creek, Mich., awarded a grant of one million dollars to the Virginia Early Childhood Foundation (VECF) to renew support for Smart Beginnings for Southside Families (SBSF) – a unique dual-generation initiative that began in 2015.

    The initiative serves families with young children in the cities of Danville, Emporia and Martinsville along with Brunswick, Greensville, Henry, Pittsylvania, and Sussex counties. In 2017, SBSF expanded to serve families in the Petersburg/Prince George County region. The new grant will support further expansion to the East End of Richmond, testing the strategies in both rural and urban localities.

    Smart Beginnings for Southside Families takes a holistic approach, responding to the needs and challenges of both the adult and the young child in a home. Parents taking part in the initiative may have limited education and are either expecting their first child or have given birth to their first child within the past 12 months. The families being served often have limited income with limited access to resources which could help them to break out of the cycle of poverty.

    VECF’s full-time project coordinator will continue supporting a set of coaches who provide case management services for the participating families, along with the assistance of local Smart Beginnings partners, including Smart Beginnings Danville Pittsylvania, Smart Beginnings Martinsville & Henry County, Smart Beginnings Southeast and Smart Beginnings Greater Richmond.

    Over the next three years, the initiative will embed “family ombudsman” strategies in the participating communities to ensure the durability of community-level changes in processes and policies for helping young families thrive. These strategies will guide the families as they navigate community resources and systems of support, as well as service providers to help problem-solve when systems work against families, rather than for them.

    “Thanks to the generosity of the Kellogg Foundation, Smart Beginnings for Southside Families has opened doors of opportunity for families in high-risk communities in Virginia,” said Kathy Glazer, president of the Virginia Early Childhood Foundation. “This initiative is helping Virginia identify and trouble-shoot the gaps, barriers and policy issues that threaten families’ success. We are demonstrating and cultivating a problem-solving orientation for service providers, coaching families to advocate for themselves, and documenting our experiences to inform local, regional and state level policy reform.”

    “In order to significantly impact school readiness for children in high-risk localities, we must address both quality of and access to services in a way that is relevant for today’s families,” said Senator Frank M. Ruff, Jr. (R-15th District). “This innovative initiative offers a collaborative, transformational approach that will ultimately strengthen the future workforce of Virginia.”

  57. VIRGINIA STATE POLICE AVIATION HANGAR DEDICATED IN HONOR OF FORMER COMMANDER

     

    Chesterfield Aviation Base Named for Lt. H. Jay Cullen

    RICHMOND – Close to 200 family, friends and colleagues gathered Wednesday (Feb. 7, 2018) at the Virginia State Police Chesterfield Aviation Base to honor the life and sacrifice of Lt. H. Jay Cullen III. Cullen and his co-pilot, Trooper-Pilot Berke M.M. Bates, became the Department’s 64th and 65th Virginia State Police line of duty deaths when their helicopter crashed Aug. 12, 2017, in Albemarle County.

    Former Governor Terry McAuliffe and former First Lady Dorothy McAuliffe attended the ceremony, during which the state police officially dedicated and renamed the hangar to the “Lieutenant H. Jay Cullen Hangar.” Cullen spent 18 of his 24 years with the Virginia State Police assigned to the Department’s Aviation Unit. When he was promoted to sergeant in 2005, he reported to the Chesterfield Aviation Base and remained at that facility as he advanced through the ranks to become the unit commander.

    “Lt. Cullen had one goal as the Aviation Unit Commander and that was to make the unit the best it could possibly be,” said Col. Gary T. Settle, Virginia State Police Superintendent. “And he succeeded through his exemplary leadership, professionalism, integrity and fortitude. Dedicating his name to this Chesterfield Aviation Base hangar is just one more way for the Department to demonstrate its sincere appreciation for the sacrifices Jay and his family have made all these years in order to support and fulfill the missions of the Aviation Unit and Virginia State Police.”

    State police initiated an aviation program in 1946 with four trooper-pilots who voluntarily worked on as an-needed basis and the acquisition of three Aeronca Chief 11AC airplanes. Helicopters were added to the fleet in 1970. The Department established an official Aviation Unit in 1984, which was the same year the Virginia General Assembly authorized funding for the creation of the Med-Flight program. Today the Virginia State Police Aviation Unit has 16 trooper-pilots, 13 flight nurses, 12 flight paramedics and four full and part-time mechanics assigned to its bases in Chesterfield, Lynchburg and Abingdon. The unit is equipped with three Bell 407 helicopters, two Airbus EC-145 helicopters, two Cessna 182 Skylanes and one Cessna 206 Stationair.

    In March, the Department will dedicate and name its helipad at the Virginia State Police Administrative Headquarters in Chesterfield County to honor and pay tribute to Trooper-Pilot Berke M.M. Bates.

    The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigation into the fatal helicopter crash remains ongoing at this time.

     

    Lieutenant H. Jay Cullen (1969 – 2017) Bio:

    Lieutenant Cullen was born in Winchester County, N.Y., and graduated from Germantown High School in Memphis, Tenn., in 1987. Prior to joining the Virginia State Police in 1993, he worked as a flight instructor in Front Royal, Va. and Winchester, Va. He held a bachelor’s degree from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.

    He graduated from the Virginia State Police Training Academy as a member of the 90th Basic Session on May 13, 1994. His first patrol assignment upon graduation was in Virginia State Police Fairfax Division’s Area 9 Office in Fairfax. In 1999, he joined the Aviation Unit as a Trooper-Pilot at the Virginia State Police Aviation Base in Manassas and has been assigned to Aviation Unit ever since.

    The following year he was transferred to the Lynchburg Aviation Base, where in 2003 he achieved the rank of Senior Trooper. He was promoted to the rank of Sergeant in 2005 and assumed his new role at the Virginia State Police Aviation Base in Chesterfield County.

    In 2007, he was named acting First Sergeant at the Chesterfield base. He was promoted to the rank of First Sergeant in 2012 and then became acting Lieutenant at the base that December.

    He was a 2014 graduate of the National Criminal Justice Command College at the University of Virginia. In February 2017, he attained the rank of Lieutenant and became commander of the Aviation Unit. 

    Lt. Cullen is survived by his wife and two teenage sons.

  58. Powhatan Bobsledder Represents Team USA

  59. Young Lawmakers Form Group to Address Millennials’ Concerns

  60. VCU Athletics Highlights Sexual Assault Resources After Nassar Trial

  61. "Be My Valentine"

    It seems that I have waited
    For ever for this day to come
    I have some words to say to you
    And I'm sure that you have some.
     
    We've been together for so long
    Yet the times went swiftly bye
    I've seen you smile with pure delight
    And have also seen you cry.
     
    Yes life goes on with or without
    Us making special plans
    It's best that we some patience show
    And the rest leave in God's hands.
     
    I've loved you from the very start
    And more and more each day
    It seems like you do feel the same
    For you sure do act that way.
     
    You are quite special in my life
    And with you I love to share
    I'm sure you know, but I will remind
    That I do truly care.
     
    Yet I still have one questin
    For this sweet love of mine
    Tell me darling you'll say yes
    And be my Valentine.
     
    Roy E. Schepp
  62. Russell Ashby Lundy, Sr.

    Russell Ashby Lundy, Sr., 82, of Emporia, passed away peacefully on February 12, 2018. He was predeceased by his parents, William and Lelia Lundy; three brothers, Turner Lundy (Louise), R.J. Lundy, and Moses Lundy; six sisters, Irene Brown (Vernon), Fannie Bowen (Frank), Kathryn Sadler (Younger), Cora Britton (Russell), Ellen Buckner (Ben), and infant Mable Lundy.  He is survived by his wife of sixty years, Betty Bradley Lundy of the home, sons Russell A. Lundy, II, and his wife Bria, of Houston, Texas; and W. David Lundy of Emporia, and sister-in-law’s, Shirley (Moses) and Trude (RJ).  He leaves behind four grandchildren to cherish his memory:  R. Ashby Lundy, III, and his wife, Polly, of South Hill; Cameron Clarke Lundy and his wife, Sarah, of Raleigh; Hunter Mitchell Lundy of South Hill, and Sadler Hastings Lundy of Emporia.  To be sure, he will be missed by a host of extended family, friends, and former co-workers.

    Russell began his retail career with Peebles Department Stores in Greer, South Carolina in 1954.  After management positions in Kenbridge and South Hill, Virginia, Winston-Salem, North Carolina, and finally, Woodbridge, Virginia, he returned to the Peebles Corporate Office in South Hill, Virginia.  He retired in 2003 as Senior Vice President of Stores. 

    He was a loyal member, Sunday School teacher, and former Deacon of Main Street Baptist Church in Emporia, an active Ruritan, and volunteer administrator of the Samaritan Helping Hands Ministry where he remained involved until his passing.  He had a love for music and enjoyed playing the bass guitar with friends.  Luncheon and Visitation will be from noon until 1:30 pm on Thursday, February 15, 2018 at Main Street Baptist Church in Emporia with Celebration of Life beginning at 1:30 pm.  Graveside service will immediately follow at Greensville Memorial Cemetery, Emporia.  

    In lieu of flowers, the family respectfully requests that memorials be made to Main Street Baptist Church Youth Ministry.  Condolences may be sent directly to the family home.  Echols Funeral Home, Emporia, is in charge of the funeral arrangements.

  63. Richmond City Council Votes 7-2 to Increase Meals Tax

  64. Proposals seek to spur growth in Virginia distillery industry

  65. Trailblazing Educator Dr. Grace Harris Dies at 84

  66. Senate OKs Raising Fuel Tax in Western Virginia to Improve I-81

  67. Virginia Skier Prepares for her Third Olympics

  68. Lovings’ Story Provides Inspiration for Valentine’s Day

  69. 6 Months After Charlottesville, Mother of Slain Activist Shares Message of Tolerance

  70. They Served the Nation That Often Refused to Serve Them. Finally See Them the Way They Saw Themselves.

     

    True Sons of Freedom, a photographic exhibition at the Library of Virginia, explores the stories of Virginia’s African American soldiers who served during World War I. Exhibition runs through November 9, 2018

    Richmond, Virginia – True Sons of Freedom, a new exhibition at the Library of Virginia running January 16–November 9, 2018, uses photographs from the World War I History Commission Collection to highlight 20 African American soldiers from Virginia who fought overseas to defend freedoms they were denied at home.

    The original photographs, reproduced in the gallery at nearly life-size dimensions, place visitors at eye level in front of the soldiers. The monumental scale allows viewers the opportunity to examine rich details not seen in the original photo postcards.

    World War I recruitment efforts aimed at African Americans brought new soldiers into the armed services, providing them with opportunities to travel, to work, and, in many cases for the first time, to face cameras—all outside the restrictions of the Jim Crow South. These pocket-size portraits, made outdoors or in makeshift studios, became mementos for families and sweethearts. More importantly, these photographs challenge the crude and demoralizing cultural products of an era that often reduced African Americans to stereotypes and denied them full participation as citizens of the United States. They pose in uniform, some in casual stances, others with a rifle to show their combat readiness. Here were African Americans presented as they wanted themselves seen.

    Reflecting the pride and determination of African American World War I servicemen, the images were submitted by these veterans with their responses to military service questionnaires created by the Virginia War History Commissionas part of an effort to capture the scope of Virginians’ participation in the Great War. The series of questions about the veterans’ experiences provides invaluable genealogical information about the soldiers, their families, and their service records.

    African Americans from all parts of the commonwealth served in the army and navy during World War I. The soldiers highlighted in True Sons of Freedom came from locations across Virginia—with concentrations in the Eastern Shore/Hampton Roads, Central Virginia, and Southside regions of the state—and most worked as farmers or laborers before the conflict.

    An online component will allow viewers to see all 140 of the photographs of African American soldiers submitted to the Virginia War History Commission and to add comments and information they might have about the soldiers. A future addition to the website will allow users to transcribe text from the questionnaires to help the Library make these records more easily searchable for researchers. Those interested can visit www.virginiamemory.com/truesons.

    If you are descendants of—or have any information about—these soldiers, the Library would like to hear from you. Members of the public can contact Barbara Batson, exhibitions coordinator (804.692.3518 or barbara.batson@lva.virginia.gov) or Dale Neighbors, Visual Studies Collection coordinator and exhibition curator (804.692.3711 or dale.neighbors@lva.virginia.gov).

  71. Educating Leaders for Tomorrow

    By Dr. Al Roberts

    Every February, people across the United States observe a holiday commonly known as Presidents’ Day. The official federal designation is George Washington’s Birthday. Virginia and a few other states preserve the original focus on Washington, but many states honor an expanded slate that includes additional presidents.

    Washington was an advocate for education. In his first annual address to Congress on January 8, 1790, the president exhorted lawmakers with these words: “There is nothing which can better deserve your patronage than the promotion of science and literature. Knowledge is in every country the surest basis of public happiness.”

    Since Washington’s time, many of his successors have reiterated similar sentiments regarding the role education plays in maintaining the freedoms outlined in the U.S. Constitution and other founding documents. They have observed that educational institutions are a fundamental ingredient for a properly functioning democracy.

    Thomas Jefferson envisioned “a system of general instruction, which shall reach every description of our citizens, from the richest to the poorest.” Jefferson authored the Declaration of Independence and served as our nation’s third president. He also worked to establish the University of Virginia.

    Abraham Lincoln, the 16th president, talked about the importance of education from his very first political speech. When running for a seat in the Illinois General Assembly, he told the people about his vision for a country where “every man may receive at least, a moderate education, and thereby be enabled to read the histories of his own and other countries, by which he may duly appreciate the value of our free institutions.”

    In 1938, Franklin D. Roosevelt, our 32nd president said, “Democracy cannot succeed unless those who express their choice are prepared to choose wisely. The real safeguard of democracy, therefore, is education.”

    And, more recently, our 44th president, Barack Obama noted that “gutting our investments in innovation and education is like lightening an overloaded airplane by removing its engine. It may make you feel like you're flying high at first, but it won't take long before you feel the impact."

    At Southside Virginia Community College, we honor the legacy of our nation’s historic leaders by educating and training leaders for the future. Academic and workforce classes prepare students with the knowledge necessary to develop their roles and responsibilities as participants in our ever-changing society. Classroom and extracurricular activities provide opportunities to expand leadership skills. Through counselors and clubs, we provide mentors who help students develop their intellectual, personal, and social skills while gaining a greater self-awareness of their own values and directions.

    Tomorrow’s leaders are in classrooms today. If you would like to be among them, visit southside.edu or call 434-949-1000 for more information.

    Dr. Al Roberts is president of Southside Virginia Community College, an institution of higher learning that provides a wide variety of education opportunities to a diverse student population within a service area that spans ten counties and the city of Emporia. He can be reached via email at al.roberts@southside.edu.

  72. Reston Teen Skates Her Way to Olympic Winter Games

  73. New Book Honors Legacy of 2 Civil Rights Lawyers

  74. Bipartisan Deal Will Raise Felony Theft Threshold

  75. Fight against gerrymandering advances at Capitol

  76. House Panels Reject LGBTQ Anti-Discrimination Bills

  77. Senate Bill Passes Quietly, Allowing Drunken Driving on Private Property

  78. CONGRESS PASSES WARNER MEASURES TO IMPROVE CARE FOR MEDICARE PATIENTS

    ~ Bills heading to the President’s desk include bipartisan efforts to improve health outcomes for those living with chronic conditions ~

    WASHINGTON — Today, a package of bipartisan healthcare provisions introduced by U.S. Sen. Mark R. Warner (D-VA), a member of the Senate Finance Committee, were included in a funding bill passed by Congress and signed by the President. Among the five bipartisan legislative proposals is the CHRONIC Care Act, legislation aimed at improving health outcomes for Medicare beneficiaries living with chronic conditions.

    “It is no surprise that this package of cost-effective, evidence based proposals received broad bipartisan support,” said Sen. Warner. “These commonsense fixes will streamline the way Medicare patients living with chronic conditions receive care, helping those with diabetes or renal disease access high quality and affordable healthcare services.”

    Bipartisan legislation passed by Congress today includes:

    • Creating High-Quality Results and Outcomes Necessary to Improve Chronic (CHRONIC) Care Act– This bill will permanently reauthorize and strengthen Medicare Advantage Special Needs plans to ensure that Medicare beneficiaries with chronic conditions or other significant health needs have continued access to quality care that is tailored to their personal needs. It also expands telehealth services offered through different providers of care that will benefit seniors in rural areas and increase access to primary care services and telestroke care. In addition, it extends the proven “independence at home” model that allows seniors to receive care from primary care teams, thereby decreasing hospital readmissions and allowing seniors with multiple chronic conditions to receive care in their own home.
    • Medicare Home Infusion Therapy Access Act– This bill will create a transitional reimbursement for Medicare home infusion services. While legislation sponsored by Sen. Warner to restructure the way Medicare beneficiaries who need intravenous medication receive their infusion treatments from the comfort of their home has already passed Congress, this bill properly aligns the change in payments with the new benefit, avoiding a four-year gap during which patients would have challenges securing these life-saving treatments. Companion legislation was introduced in the House of Representatives.
    • Dialysis Access Improvement Act– This bill will allow dialysis providers to seek outside accreditation from organizations approved by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to participate in the Medicare program, streamlining the accreditation process for dialysis facilities and improving access for Medicare patients with end-stage renal disease (ESRD). Companion legislation was introduced in the House of Representatives.
    • Protecting Access to Diabetes Supplies Act– The bill will strengthen patient protections included in the Medicare National Mail Order program for Diabetic Testing Supplies (DTS), ensuring that Medicare beneficiaries are able to continue accessing familiar diabetes supplies and test systems through DTS. Companion legislation was introduced in the House of Representatives.
    • Medicare Orthotics and Prosthetics Improvement Act– This bill will apply accreditation and other standards for orthotics and prosthetics, such as prosthetic limbs, under Medicare, helping to guarantee access to quality products for beneficiaries. Companion legislation was introduced in the House of Representatives.
  79. Archie Bolling Newsome

    Archie Bolling Newsome, 84, of Emporia, died February 10, 2018 at Greensville Manor. He was preceded in death by his parents, William Thomas Newsome, Sr. and Pattie Thorpe Newsome; sisters, Virginia Renner, Frances Newsome, Eloise Drummond, and brother William Thomas Newsome, Jr.

    He is survived by a sister, Fannie N. Doyle; and numerous nieces and nephews. The family would like to offer special thanks to the staff of Greensville Manor.

    A graveside service will be held on Wednesday, February 14, 2018 at 2:00 P.M. at Emporia Cemetery with Rev. Brad Barbour officiating.

    Memorial donations may be made to Greensville Volunteer Rescue Squad, 513 South Main St. Emporia, VA 23847.  

    Online condolences may be left at www.echolsfuneralhome.com

  80. Kay J. Callahan

    Kay J. Callahan, 70, passed away suddenly on Thursday, February 8, 2018. She is survived by her husband, Pat Callahan; daughter, Heather Kay Lackey and husband, Keith; granddaughter, Hayden Claire Lackey, sister, Dale Jones, half-sister, Lorene Ferguson and a loving extended family of brothers-in-law, sisters-in-law; nieces; nephews and her loving canine companions, Izzie and Bella.
    Kay was a lifelong member of Calvary Baptist Church having served in numerous capacities where she could help. She recently retired after 50 years of service with the Greensville County Circuit Court Clerk’s office, many of which were as Chief Deputy Clerk. Mrs. Callahan was also active in her community, particularly with the Virginia Peanut Festival Committee, serving many years as chairperson.
    The funeral service will be held 2 p.m. Tuesday, February 13 at Calvary Baptist Church, 310 N. Main St, Emporia, Virginia where the family will receive friends 12-2 p.m. prior to the service. Interment will follow at Emporia Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorial contributions be made to Calvary Baptist Church. Online condolences may be shared with the family at www.owenfh.com.
  81. Milton “Gerald” Harvey

    Milton “Gerald” Harvey, 71, died peacefully at his home on February, 7, 2018.Gerald is survived by his wife, Angela; his son, Kevin Harvey and wife, Natalie; his daughter, Kelly Settipani and husband, Leo. He was preceded in death by his parents, Ernest Milton Harvey and Mary Allen Harvey.

    A memorial service and visitation will be held on Saturday, February 10th, at 1pm at Fountain Creek Baptist Church, 8099 Brink Road, Emporia, VA 23847.

  82. Drug Use Among Adolescents and Young Adults Growing

    As frequently reported by the news media and backed by statistics published by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMSHA), a common misconception of adolescents and young adults is that prescription drugs are safer and less harmful to the body than stimulants and opioids.  The number children using prescription drugs without a prescription is out of control.  

    The impact is very harmful to the child’s developing brain and body. In  adolescence, the brain continues to develop enabling them to set priorities, formulate strategies, focus attention, control impulses, process information and understanding rules, laws and tenets of social conduct.  Drugs impact perception, fracture neural pathways, and affect judgment and inhibition.        

    Jackson-Feild's Addiction and Recovery Treatment Can Help

    Male and female adolescents and young adults ages 11 to 21 referred to our Addiction and Recovery Treatment Program have not been able to function in the community despite external structure and extensive treatment services.

    Treatment is covered by Medicaid and many private insurance providers. Therapies utilized in this program include:

    • Motivational Interviewing
    • Addiction Relapse Prevention Individual and Group Therapy
    • Practical Skills in Living Substance Free
    • Self-Regulation and Coping Skill Building 
    • Trauma Informed and Focused Treatment
    • Neurotherapy
    • Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR)
    • Variations of traditional 12 Step Program
    • Faith-based practice and spiritual growth 

    Inquiries or Referrals for Services
    admissions@jacksonfeild.org
    Office: (434) 634-3217 Ext. 3027
    Cell Phone: (434) 637-0995

  83. Louise J. Wells

    Louise J. Wells, 81, widow of Nelson Wells, passed away Wednesday, February 7, 2018. She is survived by two sons, Charles Wells and wife, Frances and Shane Wells and wife, Sherri; five grandchildren, Emma Lou Wells, Kristen Wells, Nicholas Wells, Ashley Hawkins and Tiffany Ricks; seven great-grandchildren sister, Becky Newsome and husband, Dennis and brother, Leroy Jarratt and wife, Loretta. The funeral service will be held 2 p.m. Monday, February 12 at Owen Funeral Home, 303 S. Halifax Rd., Jarratt, Virginia where the family will receive friends one hour prior to the service. Interment will follow at Emporia Cemetery.

  84. Nonpartisan Initiative Targets ‘Legalized Corruption’ In Virginia Politics

  85. Talking to Students, Former CIA Director Criticizes Trump’s Foreign Policy

  86. House OKs Limiting School Suspensions to 45 Days

  87. Panel Nixes Using Cameras to Catch Speeders in School Zones

  88. 2018 Black History Month Proclimation

    Mr. George E. Morrison III, Secretary of the Greensville Emporia NAACP and Emporia's first Appointed Black City Manager, and Deacon Cornell Hines of the Executive Board accept the 2018 Black History Month Proclimation from Emporia's first Black Mayor, Mary L. Person

    Proclamation

    Black History Month

    February 1-28, 2018

    Whereas,February is recognized nationally as Black History Month and Dr. Carter B. Woodson, a distinguished African American author, editor, publisher and historian, is acclaimed “Father of Black History Month”.  Dr. Woodson believed that African Americans should know their past in order to participate in the affairs of the country; and

    Whereas,Black History Month acknowledges both past and present African and African-American icons whose courage, sacrifices, and relentless efforts have sought to improve the quality of life for all in the name of justice, honor and freedom; and

    Whereas,such noted African-American icons as Ida B. Wells, the renowned writer, teacher, women’s suffragist and anti-lynching crusader; and Rosa Parks, whose famous decision to remain in her seat symbolized the spirit of the Civil Rights Movement, have made imperative contributions to our society; and notable local African Americans as Joseph C. Bond, a mortician, was the first African American to serve on Emporia City Council and a founder of the local NAACP branch; Dr. Willie Joyner, a physician and entrepreneur, owned a medical building, a movie theatre, and rental properties; Dr. Joseph Macklin, a pharmacist, was the first African American druggist to manage his own business; Charles Harris, a mechanic, was the first African American to own and operate a service station; Edward Westwood Wyatt, an advocate for improved school conditions for African Americans and a zealous educator, legacy lives on as the first African American High School (E.W. Wyatt High School) was named in his honor; Charlie Stephen Thomas, a businessman and a founder of the local NAACP branch, operated a grocery store across from Greensville County Training School to provide snacks for the students, since there were no cafeterias at that time; Etta Reavis, a homemaker, provided hot meals and shelter for local teachers at R.R. Moton Elementary School; Elizabeth R. Allison, Reverend and Mrs. Willie Curley, Sr., Annie Green, and Helen Kindred provided shelter and meals for the teachers on the North side of town; George C. Williams, a local farmer, purchased a bus to transport students and teachers to school that resided in the county; and

    Whereas,the Honorable Mary L. Person was elected as the first African American female to serve on Emporia City Council, made history again when she was elected on  November 6, 2012, as the first African American and first female to serve as Mayor for the City of Emporia; and

    Whereas,it is essential to learn from the many lessons of history from world renowned leaders as well as the contributions of local African Americans to continue the pursuit of our Founding Fathers’ vision of liberty, justice and equality for all; and

    Now, Therefore, I, Mary L. Person, by virtue of the authority vested in me as Mayor of the City of Emporia, Virginia do hereby proclaim February 1-28, 2018 as Black History Month in the City of Emporia.

    Done this 6th day of February in the year 2018.

  89. Clayton Winfield Morris

    Clayton Winfield Morris, 91, passed away at home on Tuesday, February 6, 2018 after a lengthy illness. He was a retired farmer. Mr. Morris was the son of the late Joseph Winfield Morris and Daisy Jean Morris and was also preceded in death by an infant son, Richard Jean Morris; sister, Edna Hobbs; three brothers, Gilbert E. Morris, L. V. Morris and Dallas Morris. He is survived by his wife, Sylvia Cullins Morris; son, Winfield Morris and special friend, Mary; daughter, Terry Anne Morris Joyner and special friend, Terry Pulley; grandsons, Clayton Earl Boles, Jerry Mcintyre and Joseph Mcintyre; granddaughter, Libby Mullins; sisters, Bernice M. Ligon and Evelyn M.Wiley; brother, Jean Neal Morriss; devoted friend and caregiver, Tammy Simmons and numerous nieces and nephews. The family will receive friends 6:30-8 p.m.Thursday, February 8 at Owen Funeral Home, 303 S. Halifax Rd., Jarratt, Virginia and at other times at Mr. Morris’ home, 7700 Little Lowground Rd. The funeral service will be held graveside 2 p.m. Friday, February 9 (which would have been Mr. Morris’ 92 birthday) at Greensville Memorial Cemetery. The family requests casual dress by those attending. Online condolences may be shared with the family at www.owenfh.com.

  90. Tethering Bill Moves Forward From Senate.

  91. House Considers Allowing Guns in Places of Worship

  92. Virginia Likely to Expand Medical Marijuana

  93. 2 Rare Diseases May Be Added to Newborn Screenings

  94. Experts Call for More Resources in Fighting Opioid Epidemic

  95. Bipartisan Senate Committee OKs Anti-tethering Bill

  96. C.A.R.E. Building Opens on February 12th

    With the generous donations from the people in our community, employees, and the financial commitment from VCU Health, we are pleased to announce that VCU Health Community Memorial Hospital’s C.A.R.E. Building will open its doors to the public on Monday, February 12, 2018. 

    The name C.A.R.E. reflects the services offered in this modern comprehensive medical center; Clinics, Administration, Rehabilitation and Education.

    The C.A.R.E building will be home to the following VCU Health CMH physician practices:  CMH Cardiology Services; CMH ENT & Pulmonology Services; CMH Family Care Center; CMH Orthopedic Service; CMH Pain Management Services; CMH Surgical Services; CMH Urological Services; and CMH Women’s Health Services.  The new facility will also house a new family dental clinic that is set to open late 2018.

    The C.A.R.E. Building is adjacent to the new hospital which is located at 1755 N. Mecklenburg Avenue in South Hill, VA.

    Providers of the eight practices that are moving will begin seeing patients in the C.A.R.E. Building on February 12th; the practices’ previous locations will be closed.  The new phone number for each practice will be (434) 584-CARE (2273).

    An open house event is scheduled for Tuesday, March 6, 2018 from 4:00 – 6:00PM.  Attendees will get the opportunity to tour the new facility, meet the providers and staff, enjoy refreshments, receive giveaways and register for door prizes.  There will be two door prizes given away, one an Apple iPad and the other a photo session with Robert Harris Photography including one 16x20 Gallery Canvas Portrait valued at $895.00 (once registered, you do not have to be present to win).

  97. House Panel Rejects ‘Net Neutrality’ Bill

  98. House Panel Rejects Suicide Prevention Resolution

  99. Bill to Remove ‘Tampon Tax’ Clears First Hurdle

  100. STUDENT OF THE MONTH HEATHER DIANNE THOMPSON JANUARY 2018

    Brunswick Academy is pleased to announce that Heather Dianne Thompson has been chosen the January 2018 Student of the Month.  Heather, a senior, is the daughter of Chris and Kristine Thompson of Emporia. Her father is also a graduate of Brunswick Academy.   She has one sister, Lauren, a Brunswick Academy graduate.   She is the Granddaughter of Mrs. Judy Houchins, Billy Houchins and William C. (Bug) and Dianne Thompson of Emporia. 

    Heather is in the Brunswick Academy Honors Program, which is the most rigourous and challenging program of studies.  This year she has been taking dual-enrollment classes at Southside Virginia Community College, as well as her upper-school classes at Brunswick Academy. 

    Regarding academics, she is a member of National Honor Society, Student Council Organization, Brunswick Academy Honor Council and the Hi-Y, where she currently serves at Vice-President.   Heather has attended Model General Assembly for three years and has been a House Representative and a bill presenter. 

    Heather has been a member of the Junior Classical League (Latin Club).    Within this group, she has held the position of philanthropic chair for two years, Vice President and now President.  Her classmates have recognized Heather’s Leadership abilitities by selecting her to be their Class Vice-President for 3 years.  At the graduation ceremonies for the Class of 2017, she was a Brunswick Academy Junior Marshal.  At the annual awards assembly held in the spring of 2017, Heather received the William Mary Leadership Award. 

    In addition to excelling in academics, throughout her years of attending Brunswick Academy, Heather has participated in athletics, both at the JJV, Junior Varsity and Varsity levels.  She has been a member of the JJV, JV and Varsity Basketball teams.  She has been a captain and has received the Most Improved Award, Coach’s Award, All Tournament Team, Second Team All-Conference, All Academic as well as Most-Improved. 

    Heather joined the volleyball team in the 6th grade and has played for seven years, serving also as Captain.  She has received Most Improved Award, Coach’s Award, Second Team All-Conference, All Academic, Coach’s Award and First Team All-Conference. She has also played JV Softball and Varsity Soccer. 

    Since the Fourth grade, Heather has participated in programs of the Brunswick Academy Theatre.  For nine year she has acted in the follow productions:  Footloose, Grease, Signin’ in the Rain, Cinderella, Little Shop of Horrors (Audrey), Little Women (Marmee), Once Upon a Mattress (Larkin) and Shrek (Fiona).  She has also participate in the Association of Virginia Academies (AVA) Forensics Program, Field Day and Arts Festival.  

    Heather has applied to James Madison University, The University of Virginia, The University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, The College of William and Mary, Liberty University and George Mason University.  

    Heather enjoys dance, piano, the beach and spending time with her family and friends. 

    CONGRATULATIONS! WAY TO GO HEATHER

  101. Kenneth Wayne Simmons

    Kenneth Wayne Simmons, age 55, originally of Emporia, Virginia went home to his Heavenly Father on February 4, 2018.

    He was preceded in death by his dad Sam Simmons, stepdad Bobby Clark, brother Calvin Simmons and sister Linda Newsome.

    Kenneth is survived by his wife Pamela Simmons, son Gavin Simmons, daughters Mary Carlson (fiancé Bradley Berardo), and Kala Carlson. His mother Grace Clark, brothers Sammy Simmons, Donnie Simmons (wife Tammy), Billy Simmons, Bruce Simmons (wife Teresa), and sister Tammy Simmons (husband Gerald). Also, his many nieces, nephews, cousins, aunts and uncles.

    Funeral services will be held at Lebanon United Methodist Church on Wednesday, February 7, 2018, at 1:00 P. M. with Rev. Bob Clyde and Rev. Randy Martin officiating. Burial will follow at Spring United Methodist Church Cemetery. The family will receive friends at the church from Noon until 1:00 P.M.

    Online condolences may be left at wrennclarkehagan.com

  102. From Home, Virginians Can Keep an Eye on Legislators

  103. Advocates Will Seek Improvements in Mental Health Services

  104. David L. Allen, Jr.

    David L. Allen, Jr., 74, of Emporia, passed away Saturday, February 3, 2018. He was the son of the late Fairy B. Allen Grizzard and David L. Allen, Sr. and was also preceded in death by a sister, Carrie R. Grizzard. David served honorably in the Virginia Army National Guard and retired from Georgia-Pacific. He is survived by his wife, Evelyn H. Allen; daughters, Lisa R. Allen and Staci A. Musselman and fiancé, William King; grandchildren, Victoria Auton (Mikeal), Tyler Wrenn, Brandon Wrenn and Ashley Musselman; great-grandchildren, Zoe Gayle and Zane Daniel Auton; sisters, Betty A. Baker and Joan A. Ligon; special nieces and nephews and numerous cousins. The funeral service will be held 2 p.m. Tuesday, February 6 at Owen Funeral Home, 303 S. Halifax Rd., Jarratt, Virginia where the family will receive friends one hour prior to the service. Interment will follow at Harrell Family Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorial contributions be made to Greensville Volunteer Rescue Squad. Online condolences may be shared with the family at www.owenfh.com.

  105. House OKs ‘Stop Gun Violence’ License Plate

  106. Panel Won’t Remove Sales Tax on Gun Safes

  107. Sexual Consent Remains Optional Topic for Family Life Education

  108. House Passes Sexual Harassment Policy

  109. Virginia House Democratic Delegates Promote Criminal Justice Reform Initiatives

  110. Hot Glass Studio Raises Money for Leukemia & Lymphoma Society

  111. Herring Joins 11 State Attorneys General in Opposing Offshore Drilling

  112. Stafford High School Athlete Playing in Super Bowl

  113. Schools May Get Authority to Open Before Labor Day

  114. GOP Lawmaker Wants Governor’s Support to Ban ‘Sanctuary Cities’

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