Once upon a time I ran a news site, now I just have opinions on the news. 

Good morning, RVA: Election results still pending, school funding, and cheap(er) booze

Good morning, RVA! It's 40 °F and a bit rainy. Later this morning, the rain should clear up and temperatures will top out around 50 °F.

Water cooler

Alright, what is UP with last week's state-level election results? Michael Martz and Patrick Wilson at the Richmond Times-Dispatch has the update, and the path forward most likely involves courts and judges. It sounds like we won't really know which party controls the House of Delegates for a good, long while.

Mark Robinson at the RTD talks to some of our local elected officials about what Richmond will ask for from the newly-much-more-liberal General Assembly, and school funding tops the list. I will admit, I am continually under-informed about how the Local Composite Index (and its bestie the Standards of Quality) works and how tinkering with the formula will impact state funding to schools in Richmond, the region, and across the state. Regardless of how it works, though, you can see how a 16% percent decrease in state funding would have a major impact on the City's ability to pay for schools. While I've got you, check out this report the Commonwealth Institute put out last year about changes to the SOQ funding formula, which I just now remember reading and thinking "Dang!"

City Council meets tonight for their regularly scheduled meeting at 6:00 PM. Remember, the published agenda is more a suggestion of an agenda than any hard-and-fast indicator of what Council will talk about tonight, but you can still give it a look-see. Some items of note: Funding for the 1st & 2nd (and now 3rd) Street bike lanes, updates to the City's open data policy, rezoning of 904 & 908 Oliver Hill Way from industrial uses to the more residential-friendly Central Business District, reducing the speed limit on Grove Avenue (!), and some towing contract stuff. Also interesting is that ORD. 2017-087, the one that would use a bit of Larus Park to expand water facilities so the City could sell more water to Chesterfield County, is now "Awaiting Withdrawal by Patron."

Gasp! What is this? The Virginia ABC will put several of its best selling products on sale this week—today through Wednesday! Sounds good, but I'm more interested in their Cyber Monday sale, when they will offer "20% off select products" including specialty Scotches. Mmmm Scotch.

Did you watch the "Claire from HR" skit on SNL this past weekend?


  • Rams ground up Grambling State, 94-65, and take on North Florida tonight at 7:00 PM.
  • Spiders (roundball) fell to Delaware, 63-76, and will welcome Jacksonville State to the Robins Center today at 12:00 PM.
  • Hokies (roundball) handled The Citadel, 132-93.
  • Wahoos (roundball) took care of business against UNC Greensboro, 60-48, and tip off against Austin Peay tonight at 7:00 PM.
  • Spiders lost at JMU, 13-20.
  • Hokies stumbled against Georgia Tech, 22-28.
  • Wahoos couldn't get it done against Louisville, 21-38.
  • Washington fell to the Vikings, 30-38.

This morning's longread

The 13-year-old boy who stole a bus to help his family

Oh man, please let this be true.

After two years of preparation I really felt I had enough confidence to do this, though of course there was some angst there. My heart was beating fast as I sat in the driver's seat and started the engine. I was awestruck at how large it was. I had a fleeting moment of doubt but then set off, telling myself: "I need to do this for my family." When I pulled out of the bus depot, there was a maintenance truck parked on Broadway - I misjudged my first turn and the back of the bus caught the mirror of the truck. The security guard took notice and came towards the bus, I thought he wanted to tell me about the back mirror, still thinking I was a real driver. I panicked and I just floored the bus, going about 45 to 50 miles an hour down Broadway. Then they rang the phone that was on the bus. I picked it up and I think they quickly realised that I wasn't a bus driver so they contacted the other buses down on the street to look for me. Every time I passed another bus I'd I hear the drivers call in and say: "Hey you know, that bus just drove past me on 45th on Broadway and I looked over there and it looks like a kid!"

This morning's Instagram

Good morning, RVA: CAFR, a bigger park, and dang teens

Good morning, RVA: A new Coliseum, the marathon, and believing women