Henrico County VA
General Assembly

Bagby establishes district office


Newly elected 74th District Virginia Delegate Lamont Bagby has established his district office, through which constituents may contact him. Bagby's district encompasses portions of northern and eastern Henrico County, all of Charles City County and two precincts in Richmond. Bagby won a special election earlier this month, easily defeating independent David Lambert, to serve the remainder of former Delegate Joe Morrissey's term, which runs through this year. Bagby and Lambert will face off again in the general election in November for the right to serve a two-year term beginning in January.

Bagby wins special election in 74th House district

UPDATE: JULY 21, 8:45 P.M. – Two-term Fairfield District School Board member Lamont Bagby today easily won a special election for the 74th District Virginia House of Delegates seat.

Bagby defeated independent David Lambert, son of late state senator Benjamin Lambert, 84 percent to 15 percent in a sparsely attended election. Less than 5 percent of eligible voters cast ballots. The district includes portions of eastern and northern Henrico, two precincts in Richmond and all of Charles City County. Nearly 88 percent of the ballots cast came from Henrico.

Dating violence is a growing problem


Married couples are not the only ones affected by domestic violence. A nationwide trend of dating violence is on the rise. Dating violence can take many forms, including psychological, emotional, physical and sexual abuse. This is something Morgan Carey of Richmond knows firsthand.

Carey said the dating abuse she suffered was primarily emotional but started to take a more dangerous turn. So through Meetup.com, she started a support group for women in similar situations.

Starting the group had an unexpected benefit, Carey said. It helped her heal while it provided support for others.

Most domestic violence deaths involve guns


It was a sleepy Tuesday morning in February 2014 when Kevin Dale Palmer broke into the home of his in-laws, Nancy and Terry Griffin, in the town of Glade Spring in far southwestern Virginia.

The day before, Palmer had been served a protective order filed by his wife, Kristin. But the court document could not protect the family from the storm of rage and bitterness that would end four lives.

Kristin Palmer moved into her parents’ home with her son, Griffin, less than a week before her death. In an affidavit, Kristin Palmer chronicled an eight-year saga of fear and abuse imposed on her and her son by Kevin Palmer.

Guns trigger debate at General Assembly


In Virginia, as in most states, you can get a gun without ever having fired one.

A push for new gun laws was one of the hot topics of the General Assembly’s 2015 session. Both the gun lobby and gun control advocates sought legislation regarding firearms.

Second Amendment groups wanted to loosen the laws – to allow, for example, concealed handgun permit holders to carry loaded shotguns or rifles in their vehicles. Gov. Terry McAuliffe vetoed that bill.

Gun control groups wanted to restrict access to firearms. They backed bills to prohibit letting children under 5 fire a gun, and to reinstate Virginia’s prohibition on buying more than one handgun a month. Those bills died in a legislative subcommittee on unrecorded votes.

Guns used in most suicides in U.S., Va.


In 2012, a second lieutenant in the U.S. Army Reserve shot himself in the head at a shooting range in Colonial Heights after renting a .40-caliber Smith & Wesson. The sound of gunshots at shooting ranges is pervasive. But the sound of suicide is becoming more common than anyone would hope for. And it is happening all over the country.

“Every day in the United States, 22 veterans succumb to suicide – losing their personal battle to invisible wounds of war,” U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut said in a news release earlier this year.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the United States – not far behind kidney disease and influenza and pneumonia.

Fresh vegetables and fruits can be hard to find


Twenty-eight percent of Virginians report having a difficult time finding fresh fruits and vegetables to buy in their community, according to a survey released on Monday at the fourth Weight of the State childhood obesity prevention conference.

The survey was conducted by the Virginia Foundation for Healthy Youth between March 2014 and March 2015 as part of its Fresh Spot campaign aimed at increasing the availability of fresh fruits and vegetables in the commonwealth.

Members of Y Street, the foundation’s volunteer group for high school students, surveyed more than 2,700 people in 169 Virginian communities.

Watchdog group blasts Assembly’s ‘murky practices’


Transparency Virginia, a nonprofit, nonpartisan legislative watchdog group, released a report Tuesday highlighting “murky practices” and “disturbing” findings from the 2015 General Assembly session with regard to unrecorded votes and short notices for committee meetings.

The principal author of the report, Megan Rhyne of the Virginia Coalition for Open Government, said the system is devised for insiders and “the short sessions and the rapid-fire scheduling of committee meetings undermine participation by and accountability to the citizens of Virginia.”

Transparency Virginia formed in December to study legislative practices in three areas: advanced notice of committee meetings, consideration of bills and recorded votes on bills.

Assembly rejects McAuliffe’s drone recommendations


The General Assembly has rejected Gov. Terry McAuliffe’s recommendation to give police a freer rein in using unmanned aircraft.

Both the House and Senate rejected changes that the Democratic governor proposed to legislation regarding when law enforcement agencies must get a warrant to use a drone. McAuliffe’s amendments drew opposition from members of both parties.

SB 1301, introduced by Sen. Donald McEachin, D-Richmond, and HB 2125, sponsored by Del. Ben Cline, R-Rockbridge, originally said that government agencies would need a search warrant to use drones for “law enforcement” activities.

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