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Governor Names New IT Chief

Governor McAuliffe has named the former IT chief of the US House of Representatives to run the Virginia Information Technologies Agency.

Nelson Moe will take over as CIO at a time the state is seeking to restructure its IT services to make them more cost effective, more cutting edge and more secure.

The Governor says Nelson Moe is a high-energy results-driving IT executive with a track record of leadership.

Before he worked for the House, he served as an officer aboard a US nuclear submarine.

McAuliffe to Sign Child Care Bills

Today in Midlothian Governor Terry McAuliffe will sign legislation to increase the regulation of child care centers in Virginia.

The bills will lower from 5 to 4 the number of unrelated children that can be cared for in a facility without requiring the provider to be licensed.

They will also require employees and volunteers to notify their employer if they’re convicted of a barrier crime of neglect or child abuse.

The legislation was inspired by several high profile incidents of child deaths at unlicensed facilities including one in Midlothian.

House Speaker Howell Faces Challenger

Virginia House Speaker William J. Howell faced his first serious Republican primary challenger in a Frederickburg debate yesterday (5/24).

Hoping to capitalize on the same voter dissatisfaction that helped Dave Brat oust Eric Cantor last year, Susan Stimpson is taking on Howell in the House district that includes Stafford County and Fredericksburg.

They clashed over taxes, Medicaid and transportation in their first faceoff.

She tried to paint Howell as out of touch with conservative principals of low taxes and small government.

Jeff Schapiro: Brat's Immigrant Views; Sullivan Extended; Morrissey Saga Continues; 3-way Race May Thwart Dems Takeover Bid

Jeff Schapiro analyzes Dave Brat's immigration comments, UVa Board's extension president's contract, the latest Joe Morrisey soap opera episode, and a three-waqy race for the State Senate in Roanoke.

FOIA Council Rejects Misdemeanor Penalties for Violations

The Virginia Freedom of Information Advisory Council has rejected legislation to criminalize FOIA violations by public employees.

The bill would have made failure to comply with FOIA requests a misdemeanor offense, punishable by up to 12 months in jail and a $2,500 fine.

Megan Rhyne, President of the Virginia Coalition for Open Government says 12 other states provide stricter penalties than fees.

Body Camera Recommendations Expected in August

Virginia’s Secure Commonwealth Panel is now expected to issue recommendations on the implementation of police body cameras in August 2015.

Virginia’s Secretary of Public Safety Brian Moran want’s uniform guidelines for the implementation of body cameras as well as other surveillance technologies used by law enforcement, such as dashboard cameras and license plate readers.

It’s unclear whether funding will be available to assist all localities in paying for the cameras should they wish to use them. They are already in use in Henrico and Chesterfield.

Morrissey to Run for State Senate

Former Delegate Joe Morrissey told reporters yesterday May 21) that he intends to marry the mother of his child and run for the 16th district state Senate seat.

Morrissey said he will file before the June 9th Democratic Primary and he’s eager to begin campaigning in earnest.

A three-way race could be advantageous to Morrissey, who defied all expectations to win as an Independent in a special election for the 74th District House of Delegates seat in December.

Scott Explains No Vote on Human Trafficking Bill

A bill patroned by Republican Senator John Cornyn to crack down on human trafficking is headed to President Obama’s desk. Virginia’s 3rd District Cogressman Bobby Scott issued a statement yesterday (5/19) explaining why he voted no.

Scott says the bill unnecessarily expands mandatory minimum sentencing, which discriminate against minorities, waste money and fail to reduce crime. The legislation requires a 10-15 year sentence for trafficking.

Voter Registration Ends For June Primary With Few New Voters Reported

The June 9th legislative primaries could be a slow day at the polls, based on new voter registration.

Monday (5/18) was the deadline and registrars report just a trickle of new voters.

All 100 seats in the Virginia House and 40 seats in the Senate are up for election November 3rd.

Primary elections are scheduled in 12 house districts, and 8 senate districts. All  primaries are open to all registered voters, regardless of party in Virginia.

Turnout in legislative primaries varies from a low of 1.4% to a high of 16.4% of registered voters.

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