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VPM Daily Newscast January 28, 2021

VPM's daily newscast contains all your Central Virginia news in just 5 to 10 minutes. Hosted by Benjamin Dolle, episodes are recorded the night before so you can wake up prepared.

Listeners can subscribe through Apple Podcasts, Megaphone, and Spotify.

Here’s a recap of the top stories on the morning of Thursday, January 28, 2021:

  • Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney announced on Wednesday he had tested positive for COVID-19, making him one of more than 12,000 Richmonders who’ve contracted the virus. Stoney says he began experiencing symptoms on Monday. The mayor is now in isolation.


  • Gov. Ralph Northam says the problems Virginia is facing with its COVID-19 vaccine rollout are being seen across the country. He says President Joe Biden has pledged to increase federal vaccine distribution by 16% to address current shortages. Northam also announced the state is hoping to streamline information with a new vaccine dashboard,central website and phone number for people to register for the vaccine. The governor extended COVID-19 restrictions through the end of February and made permanent temporary workplace health standards adopted last year.


  • On Wednesday, the Virginia Senate voted to censure Sen. Amanada Chase (R-Chesterfield). The censure is a rare move, formally reprimanding the senator, but instituting no punishment. Chase, who’s running for governor, has cast her lot with former President Donald Trump, echoing his claims of voter fraud in the 2020 general election. That’s one of eight listed reasons the Senate voter for her censure 24-9.  


  • The body also rejected Sen. Joe Morrisey’s (D-Richmond) bike safety reforms, citing concerns over a provision that would allow bicyclists to treat stop signs as yield signs. States that have adopted similar provisions have seen a decrease in cyclist-involved accidents.


  • Soon, the state Senate will vote on the future of the death penalty in Virginia, something proponents say could save the state millions. Some lawmakers have voiced opposition, saying ending the penalty would be unfair to victims of violent crimes. But, some families of victims say it’s time for capital punishment to go.


  • The statewide coalition Virginians for Paid Sick Days is calling on the state legislature to mandate paid sick leave for essential workers. Three paid sick leave proposals were rejected  last year, but advocates say they’ve added hardship provisions to address concerns. They would provide exemptions to businesses if they can’t financially support it.


  • Another Republican businessman has thrown his hat into the race for Governor. Glenn Youngkin is the former CEO of the Carlyle Group, a private equity firm. He cites his lack of political experience as a positive, echoing claims by Pete Snyder, who entered the already-crowded field yesterday. Five Republicans have now declared for the race.
VPM News is the staff byline for articles and podcasts written and produced by multiple reporters and editors.
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