Join us on         

Craig Carper

Craig Carper's picture

WCVE Public Radio political contributor.

Articles by Craig Carper

Hardywood Goochland Facility to Triple Production, Create 56 Jobs

Governor McAuliffe announced on Monday (7/20) that Hardywood Park Brewery will invest $28 million to build a new brewing and distribution plant in Goochland County.

The new brewery will supplement Hardywood’s Richmond location, where they plan to continue to invest and expand. The new facility will create 56 new jobs and feature an amphitheater, a tap room and beer garden.

Hardywood was founded in Richmond in 2011 and is has quickly gained recognition as a leader in Virginia’s growing craft brew industry.

Parole Review Commission Holds First Meeting

Governor McAuliffe’s Parole Review Commission met for the first time yesterday (7/20) at the State Capitol to examine whether the 1994 decision by the General Assembly and then Governor Allen to eliminate parole, needs a second look.

Republicans say the elimination of parole has worked and lowered the state’s crime rate. They add that parole review hearings are unfair to the victims and their families who must re-live the crime each time an offender is eligible for early release.

Henrico and Chesterfield Back at the Table for Stadium Discussion

Henrico and Chesterfield are back at the table to discuss a new minor league ballpark for the Flying Squirrels.

Richmond Mayor Dwight Jones says the conversation around a freestanding children’s hospital has driven a renewed commitment to regional cooperation and that includes finding a solution to replacing the Diamond.

Richmond and the two counties all prefer Boulevard for the hospital, meaning the Squirrels will need to relocate.

McAuliffe Announces International Trade Alliance

Governor Terry McAuliffe announced on Wednesday (7/15) the creation of the Virginia International Trade Alliance (VITAL).

VITAL will work with the Virginia Economic Development Partnership (VEDP) to increase international trade in Virginia.

Goals of VITAL over the next five years include growing Virginia exports by over $1.5 billion dollars, as well as creating 14,000 new trade-supported jobs.

The Governor says expanding trade is a must.

McAuliffe Recalls General Assembly To Redraw Congressional District

Governor Terry McAuliffe is calling the General Assembly back to Richmond on August 17th for a special session to redraw Virginia’s 3rd congressional district boundaries.

A court had ordered the maps be redrawn by September 1, 2015 after they found the House Republican authored plan packed black voters in the 3rd district, weakening their voting power in surrounding ones.

Coy says the Governor will adjust that date should the court agree to extend the September 1st deadline they issued 2 months ago.

State Expands Green Vehicle Conversion Program to Localities

Governor Terry McAuliffe and the Commonwealth Transportation Board recently expanded access of the ‘Virginia Alternative Fuel Vehicles Program’ to include local governments.

The program provides funding to help cover the costs of switching publicly owned vehicles over to ones that use alternative fuel sources. Funding incentives offered by the program average $10,000 per new vehicle, and are now available in Richmond, Tidewater, Fredericksburg, and Northern Virginia.

Alleyn Harned, Executive Director of Virginia Clean Cities, says the new incentives are promising.

Lobbyist Spending on Entertainment is Down

Virginia lobbyists spent roughly 16 percent less on drinks, meals and entertainment for state lawmakers over the last 6-month reporting period than before Governor Bob McDonnell’s indictment on corruption charges.

A new report compiled by the Virginia Public Access Project found the total number of entertainment dollars down to $456,000 from $541,000 two years ago.

Some lawmakers, staff and lobbyists appear to be taking greater care to report the gifts that they receive.

2 Percent Raises Coming in September for State Employees

State workers will notice a 2% increase in their paychecks starting September 1st, as a result of a half billion dollar year end surplus, the biggest in Virginia history.

That includes classified state employees, college and university faculty, sheriff’s deputies, the judicial branch and local constitutional officers.

The surplus also covers the state share of a 1.5% pay raise for public school teachers, but localities will have to match that.

Virginia Achieves Highest Surplus Ever

Governor Terry McAuliffe and the leaders of the House and Senate money committees announced today (7/13) that Virginia has achieved it’s highest year-end revenue surplus ever, over half a billion dollars.

Much of the money will go to the state’s Rainy Day Fund and Water Quality Fund. The remainder will pay for 2% pay raises for state employees. It’s only the second time they’ve received an increase since 2007.

While he says this is good news, Governor McAuliffe warns that the state faces potential deep cuts in October as a result of sequestration.