Henrico County VA

Law would let Dominion hike electric bills


Dominion Virginia Power would be allowed to avoid state regulation for eight years while having the ability to raise consumers’ electric bills, if the General Assembly passes a bill before the Senate Committee on Commerce and Labor.

The legislation would require Dominion to maintain its base rate for eight years beginning in 2013 – when the state last reviewed the company’s rates – until 2020. While the base rate would stay the same, the company would retain the authority to increase fuel surcharges and other “riders” that are added to customers’ utility bills. > Read more.

O’Bannon to seek re-election as supervisor

Tuckahoe District Supervisor Pat O’Bannon this week became the first member of the county’s Board of Supervisors to formally announce her intention to seek re-election to the board this November.

O’Bannon is currently serving her fifth term on the board, having first been elected in 1995.

“I have worked hard to keep costs low, respecting our citizens’ budgets, while still maintaining public safety service delivery at the levels they want, “ said O’Bannon. “We want our firefighters and police to be able to respond quickly, to have the best training we can give them and to have the best technology available.” > Read more.
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Morrissey reclaims his House seat

Embattled lawmaker wins special election despite serving jail time
Joe Morrissey
UPDATE: Jan. 13, 9:15 P.M. – Embattled – and imprisoned – former Delegate Joe Morrissey tonight won back the 74th District House of Delegates seat that he resigned late last year, defeating Democrat Kevin Sullivan and Republican Matt Walton in a special election that was necessitated by his resignation.

Morrissey earned 42 percent of the vote, to Sullivan’s 33 percent and Walton’s 24 percent. Slightly more than 6,700 of the 53,000 registered voters turned out for the special election. The district encompasses a wide swath of northern and eastern Henrico, all of Charles City County and a portion of Richmond.

For now, the win means that Morrissey will serve the final year of the two-year term and be sworn in Wednesday morning when the General Assembly convenes in Richmond. But Virginia Republicans and Democrats have vowed to do whatever they can to remove him from office, following his conviction last month on a misdemeanor charge of contributing to the delinquency of a minor. > Read more.

Feeling handcuffed

State inmates overcrowding Henrico’s two jails, costing county taxpayers $6.5 million annually
One-fourth of the inmates in Henrico’s jail are under extended temporary custody from the state, costing county taxpayers an estimated $6.5 million per year.

The state reimburses seven times less than what Henrico officials say it costs to house the inmates, and the sheriff’s department will have to repay the state under Gov. Terry McAuliffe’s plan to balance the budget shortfall. County officials worry the problem is likely to get worse following the closing of Powhatan correctional facility.

The county jail, designed to house offenders up to the date of their trial or sentencing and for no longer than one year, is functioning instead partially as a state prison. > Read more.

Melting Pot to donate to Children’s Hospital through Jan. 31

Through the end of January, in honor of The Melting Pot of Richmond’s 20th year in business, it will make a $20 donation to Children's Hospital of Richmond at VCU from the sale of each special three-course anniversary package.

The period began Jan. 11 and will continue through Jan. 31 with a Daddy-Daughter Date Day, during which the restaurant, located in Gayton Crossing in Henrico's Far West End, will be open early (from noon to 4 p.m.). Reservations are strongly encouraged and can be made by calling (804) 741-3120). > Read more.

Adams announces she will seek Farfield School Board seat

Community advocate Tara Adams has announced that she will seek the Fairfield District School Board seat in November's election. The seat is currently held by Lamont Bagby, who intends to seek the Democratic nomination for the 74th District seat in the House of Delegates this June. Bagby has not announced whether he would seek a third term on the School Board should he fail to earn that nomination.

The entire School Board will be up for election in November, along with the Board of Supervisors. > Read more.

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Community

Author, child abuse survivor to speak at Henrico event

To help celebrate twenty years of service to advocating for abused and neglected children in Henrico County, Henrico Court Appointed Special Advocates, Inc. (CASA) will host an evening with bestselling author K.L. Randis on Tuesday, Aug. 26, from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at Belmont Recreation Center in Lakeside.

Randis is best known for her bestselling novel, Spilled Milk, which tells her painful – but ultimately triumphant – personal story of abuse and of child abuse prevention. The book is her first novel.

The event is free to the public, but seating is limited Reservations may be made by e-mailing .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Belmon Recreation Center is located at 1600 Hilliard Road. > Read more.

Philippines ambassador to the US visits Filipino Festival in Henrico


The Ambassador of the Philippines to the United States Jose L. Cuisia, Jr. attended the Ninth Annual Filipino Festival at Our Lady of Lourdes Church earlier this month. Cuisia (pictured above with festival performers) was welcomed by County Manager John Vithoulkas and Brookland District Supervisor Dick Glover (below) at the church, which is located in Lakeside.

While enjoying some of the cultural performances at the festival, the ambassador and his wife had a private lunch with Vithoulkas, Glover, Eldon Burton (an outreach representative from U.S. Senator Mark R. Warner’s Office) and Father James Begley, the pastor of OLL. > Read more.

Dragon boats invade the James

Hundreds of spectators filled the banks of the James River to watch two dozen teams of competitors in the Walgreen’s Richmond International Dragon Boat Festival at Rocketts Landing Aug. 2. The event included a number of races, as well as several cultural performances. The sport is billed as the fastest growing water sport in the world.(Photo by Roger Walk for the Henrico Citizen) > Read more.

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Entertainment

A hero is born

Disney’s ‘Big Hero 6,’ lovable robot Baymax delight
It may be time for Olaf to step down as our nation’s reigning cartoon character. Big Hero 6, the latest animated feature from Disney, contains a challenger to the throne: Baymax (Scott Adsit), another lovably chubby white wonder, who will bring joy to children’s hearts and invade every home in America inside a six-foot pile of Disney merchandise.

Big Hero 6 (based ever so slightly on a Marvel comic of the same name) is the story of Baymax – and also his closest companion Hiro Hamada (Ryan Potter). And then also their four friends, all of whom join together to form the titular superhero team.

At first, though, it’s only Hiro, a young boy and an engineering prodigy, who’d rather spend his time in underground robot fight clubs than do something productive with his gifts. > Read more.

Authentically Italian

Bella’s feels – and tastes – like Italy should
Short Pump is known for its share of chain restaurants and strip malls, but diners looking for something more distinct can certainly find it without heading downtown or to nearby Charlottesville.

In fact, local husband-and-wife restaurateurs Valeria Bisenti and Doug Muir brought a taste of Charlottesville (and Italy) to Short Pump when they took a chance and opened Bella’s second location in the same shopping strip as Wal-Mart and Peter Chang China Cafe. (Bella’s original location is on Main Street in downtown Charlottesville.)

For a local Italian restaurant, Bella’s is as “Mom and Pop” as its gets. Valeria is Mom, and Doug is Pop. Since its opening about six months ago, diners have been eating rich comfort foods and drinking Italian wines. > Read more.

Restaurant watch

Find out how your favorite dining establishments fared during their most recent inspections by the Virginia Department of Health. > Read more.

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