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Senate Committee Votes Legal Use Of Marijuana Derivative To Treat Epileptic Seizures

A proposal to legalize two marijuana derivatives for treating epilepsy has cleared its first hurdle in the General Assembly.

The legislation was offered by Senator David Marsden, a Fairfax County Democrat, to allow the legal possession of an oil derivative of marijuana when a doctor determines that a patient has a debilitating epileptic condition, even though a state police spokesman testified it couild put Virginia in conflict with federal law.

Mayor Jones Says Richmond Is Resurgent, Calls For End To Infighting In Annual Address

Mayor Dwight Jones called Richmond a “resurgent city,” in his annual State of the City address last night (1/29). 

The major listed among the city’s biggest wins in 2014, the successful campaign to lure Stone Brewing company to town.

The mayor also talked about a 25 million dollar federal transportation grant for rapid transit bus service from Henrico to downtown.

He did not name a new police chief, saying that announcement would come next week, nor did he say anything about baseball, promising an update on that when “the time is right.”

Dominion Wants End To Biennial Rate Review By SCC Through 2020

Dominion Virginia Power wants fewer state controls over what it charges customers and says it would be better for everybody.

Dominion says the move will actually help protect its customers from possible steep increases in their electric bills, brought on by federal efforts to curb carbon emissions, and that it would help avoid the premature closing of several coal-powered plants.

Critics say it would hurt consumers and amount to a giveaway to Dominion.

Convention of States Resolution Passes House and Senate Committees

A joint resolution that would ask congress to call a convention of the states to propose new amendments to the U.S. Constitution has passed both the House and Senate Rules Committees.

Supporters of the convention held a rally at the Capitol this week.

The proposal has picked up high profile support from conservative lawmakers such as Speaker of the House Bill Howell.

House Rules Committee Passes Resolution Calling For US Constitutional Convention

There is a move in the General Assembly to call a constitutional convention to reduce both the federal deficit and federal powers over the states.

The House rules committee passed two resolutions backed by conservative republicans, libertarians and constitutionalists.

It would take a minimum of 34 states to petition congress. So far only Alaska, Florida, and Georgia are looking at similar proposals.

Legislators Seek Pay Raise for Corrections Officers

Several lawmakers have submitted budget amendments for a 5% increase in salary for state corrections officers.

These officers are paid disproportionately less than other law enforcement officers in federal corrections facilities and sheriff’s deputies in local jails. A recent study ranked Virginia as the 48th lowest for corrections officer compensation. Several studies show that corrections officers have even higher levels of PTSD than combat veterans.

Measure to Repeal Same Sex Marriage Ban Dies in Senate Committee

The state Senate Privileges and Elections Committee has killed a measure that would start the process to repeal the 2006 constitutional amendment banning same-sex-marriage.

The U.S. Supreme Court legalized same sex marriage in Virginia when it refused to intervene following a lower court decision overturning the state’s ban on the practice in October.

The bill’s patron, Democratic Senator Adam Ebbin of Alexandria, says the constitution and the code need to accurately reflect the law of the land.

Voter Registration Bill Fails in Senate

A bill that would require voters to register by party was killed in the Senate on a vote of 19 to 21.

The bill’s patron Republican Senator Mark Obenshain of Harrisonburg says the legislation would give each party the flexibility to set the rules of participation for each nominating cycle.

Should a voter choose not to register with a particular party, they could register as an independent.


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