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Charles Fishburne

Charles Fishburne's picture

Charles Fishburne is a correspondent for WCVE Public Radio. He brings over 40 years experience as a broadcast journalist and news executive in Richmond, Washington D.C. and New York. Charles was also a long-time television news anchor and news director in Richmond.

Articles by Charles Fishburne

Virginia Will Pay 520 Thousand To Lawyers Who Fought Same-Sex Marriage Ban

Virginia will pay more than half a million dollars to the lawyers who successfully challenged its gay marriage ban. 

The attorneys for two same-sex couples had sought more than 1.7 million dollars, but agreed to $520,000 in a settlement filed yesterday (1/29) in US District court in Norfolk.

Court papers showed attorneys for the two firms logged 2,372 hours. Their fees will be paid by the state Department of Treasury’s Division of Risk Management.

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.”

Army Corps Of Engineers Sets Blueprint For Flood Control

The US Army Corps of Engineers has just released a massive report on flood risks along the North Atlantic Coast, including Virginia and says there are some “tough choices ahead.” The study assesses the vulnerability of 31 thousand miles of coastline along 10 states.

Yesterday the Army Corps of Engineers put out a framework to help manage flooding risks, but said it has to be done among all levels of government and the private sector, and it can’t come soon enough.

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.

UVA Hires Security Firm To “Walk Students Home”

The University of Virginia has hired an international security firm to escort vulnerable students to safety in Charlottesville neighborhoods near campus.

UVA says the unarmed security guards will now patrol the popular strip of restaurants and bars known as the Corner and also be stationed near fraternity houses and off-campus apartments.

Under the new program, guards may help walk students home, call a safe ride or wait with them at a bus stop and will have a communications link to an emergency dispatch center.

The service begins Monday, February 2nd.

State Population Growth Lowest In Decades, Richmond Metro Up 3.9%

Virginia’s population growth has slowed to its lowest rate in decades. 

UVA’s Weldon Cooper Center says the state’s population has increased by less than 1% since 2010, and is now estimated at 8.3 million  residents as of last July (2014).  

Northern Virginia continues to account for most of the growth at 7.5%, but Richmond Metro is above average at 3.9% and 1.2 million people.

Chesterfield is up 4.4% at 330 thousand, Henrico up 3.6% at 318 thousand, Richmond is up 4.5% at 213 thousand, and  Hanover is up 2.9% at 103 thousand.

Obama Administration Reveals Offshore Drilling Plans

The Obama administration yesterday (1/27) announced an unprecedented plan to allow drilling for oil and gas in federal waters off four Southeast states, including Virginia.

Under the plan, the government would lease an area at least 50 miles offshore in a wide swath off Virginia , North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia.

Oil companies believe there is an energy bonanza, an estimated 3.3 billion barrels of oil, and 31 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.

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.