The nation's largest tobacco companies are challenging court-ordered advertisements requiring the cigarette makers to say they lied about the dangers of smoking. A federal judge had ordered the industry to pay for so-called corrective statements in advertisements in newspapers and on TV, websites and cigarette pack inserts. The companies involved include Richmond-based Altria Group Inc., owner of the biggest U.S. tobacco company, Philip Morris USA; No. 2 cigarette maker, R.J. Reynolds , and No. 3 Lorillard Inc.
Articles by Charles Fishburne
Henrico County may be ready to restore a tax relief program for the elderly and disabled. The county had slashed benefits of the Real Estate Advantage Program that reduced or eliminated real estate tax bills of the elderly or disabled who met financial requirements. The program had reduced tax bills by up to $3,000, but the maximum was cut to $1,500 this year to save money.
When Randolph Macon College Professor David Brat stunned Congressman Eric Cantor by defeating him in the Republican primary the campus was swamped, and Randolph-Macon’s newly acquired visibility isn’t about to stop.
School Security grants totaling six million dollars have been awarded to 100 school divisions and six regional educational programs in Virginia. The grant money announced by Governor McAuliffe is intended to protect students and teachers through the purchase of video monitoring systems, metal detectors and visitor ID systems.
The security upgrades will be installed in 373 schools and other buildings across the state.
The awards were based on the schools most in need and those with relatively high numbers of offenses.
Governor McCauliffe says he is agressively pursuing a Stone Brewery for Virginia, including installing a beer dispenser at the executive mansion. The governor says he has installed a kegerator that dispenses beer from the California-based brewery and even shared a brew with company officials at the mansion the other night. He said “it’s between us and Ohio, and we’ve got to get it here in Virginia.”
Virginia State University will have to cut about 19 million dollars, or 10% of its operating budget, to make up revenue as its enrollment drops. Enrollment last fall was 5,900, this year it is 4,900, and officials say that decline alone has cost the university 17.6 million. Another 1.3 million was lost from a reduction in state revenues.
The Richmond Times-Dispatch says the university’s governing board was told yesterday Virginia State will leave vacancies unfilled, cut back food service and make other cuts, about 4.29 million, in academic affairs.
In a motion filed in Richmond Circuit Court, Dalal’s attorneys asked the court to order Judkins to specify the “exact words alleged to be false or defamatory.” Judkins is the former chief administrative officer for finance and administration.
Richmond Commonwealth Attorney Michael Herring reviewed the pension case and found no criminal wrongdoing, but said Byron Marshall made a “mistake” based on bad advice from human resources. Marshall resigned under pressure this month. His reasons for leaving were not disclosed. His severance package is $163,000.
The Illinois Supreme Court granted a review yesterday of a case involving a 10 billion dollar lawsuit against Philip Morris, USA. It appeared the case had been settled in 2005, when the Illinois high court dismissed the $10.1 billion lawsuit against the nation’s biggest cigarette maker.
Former Virginia Senator Jim Webb said yesterday that he is “seriously looking” at a Democratic presidential campaign in 2016. Webb said in a speech to the National Press Club that he has talked to respected advisers about a presidential bid and will continue to have those discussions during the next four or five months. Webb’s potential move would create a challenge to former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, the Democratic front-runner.