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VPM Daily Newscast: July 13, 2021

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

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Here’s a recap of the top stories on the morning of Tuesday, July 13, 2021: 

  • Yesterday, Governor Ralph Northam announced his latest plan for how he wants to spend some of the more than $4 billion in federal funds headed to the commonwealth. Northam and top Democrats say they want to set aside $250 million of the money toward the Rebuild Virginia program. The fund gives grants of up to $10,000 to Virginia small businesses and nonprofits harmed by the pandemic. The spending still has to be approved by the General Assembly when they meet in August. 

  • Virginia school districts are required to adopt policies about harassment-free treatment of transgender students ahead of the upcoming school year. Religious groups including the Virginia Family Foundation filed lawsuits earlier this year seeking to delay the policies from going into effect.  VFF says on its website, the language crosses the line into mandatory promotion of politicized ideology. But as VPM’s Megan Pauly reports, a coalition led by Equality Virginia and the ACLU is fighting back in court. 

  • The City of Charlottesville removed two Confederate statues on Saturday. The statues became a flashpoint for the far right, whose 2017 Unite the Right rally ended in the death of Heather Heyer. Ben Paviour has more

  • Work crews in Charlottesville also removed a statue that depicted explorers Lewis and Clark towering above Sacajawea after a unanimous city council vote on Saturday. The statue was taken to an undisclosed location.  On Sunday, the University of Virginia removed a statue of George Rogers Clark, a soldier during the Revolutionary War era. It depicts him attacking a Native American family. Officials haven’t decided what to do with the statues yet. 

  • Richmond Museums and cultural sites are working together to reopen over the coming months. 22 local museums made a joint statement about the protocols being considered for reopening, according to the Richmond Times-Dispatch. Some of the museums included in the agreement are Agecroft Hall, the Children’s Museum of Richmond, and the Black History Museum and Cultural Center of Virginia. Steps being taken include requiring masks for staff and visitors, limiting hands-on exhibits, and encouraging contactless payment methods. 

  • Richmond’s James River Park Trail landed a top spot as one of the best running trails in the country, according to Men’s Journal Magazine. The over six mile loop is a popular spot for mountain bikers, hikers and families looking to see some of the best views of the city. Sections of the trail go past Maymont, the Hollywood Cemetery and part of the James River called Buttermilk Springs. 

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