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

Good morning, RVA: Snow Day 3, with a vengeance

Good morning, RVA! It's 31 °F, and, today, temperatures will hit the mid 40s . Theoretically this should be enough to finally clear up the roads. Fingers crossed!

Other than public schools, it seems like most things are open for business today. Depending on the makeup of your household and the level of your introvertedness, your patience with other humans may or may not be wearing thin.

Water cooler

Yesterday, just three days after the March for More, the Governor announced that his proposed budget will include $268.7 million new dollars for K-12 education. This includes a 2% teacher raise, $35 million to Virginia’s At-Risk Add-On program, $35 million to boosting the state’s per pupil allocation, and $80 million that can be used for “low-interest loans for school construction.” I am dumb at education funding, but it seems like Richmond Public Schools could take advantage of all of those new monies. At the moment, though, I am unclear if this proposal meets the current need (I doubt it), and I’m not super sure where all this money comes from—I hope it’s not sucking up all of the new internet sales tax revenue, some of which should pay for stuff like public transportation. Michelle Hankerson at the Virginia Mercury has a few more details about how the Gov plans to pay for all of this. Here are Mayor Stoney’s comments “This is a significant step toward getting our students and teachers the support they need and deserve, but we still have more work to do. We need to make our voices heard in January to protect these investments and continue fighting for our students. More money means better schools and stronger students.” This is a good point! The budget bill must still past the General Assembly, so there is still advocacy work to be done!

Sarah King at Richmond Magazine says Chesterfield County could, gasp, entertain a public transportation pilot program on Route 1. They’ll hear a presentation on some of the options and discuss a bit today at their Board of Supervisors meeting. The goal, as it has been for the last forever: Hourly, fixed-route bus service on Route 1 provided by GRTC from the city limits to John Tyler Community College. It’s not rocket science—or even bus science! It’s just common sense.

A bunch of folks writing for Style Weekly have put together a year-in-review piece. I love scrolling through these sorts of things, mostly because, dang, look at all of the great stuff that happened in 2018! Can you believe the whole meals tax situation was an entire year ago?

State government: It is interesting! Jeff Schapiro at the Richmond Times-Dispatch has a long piece about Eileen Filler-Corn, the newly elected House Democratic leader. She’s the first woman to hold that title, and should the Democrats find a way to keep all of their existing seats and grab a couple more, she’d be the first woman to hold the gavel as Speaker of the House. Side note: I could do without some of the Olde Time Virginian Gentleman cruft in this piece. There’s no need to remark on her hyphenated last name, and can we just ban “come-here” from our collective vocabulary? We don’t need to dunk on someone who’s lived in Virginia for three decades as if they were an inexperienced visitor.

Via /r/rva today, not a beautiful picture of Richmond, but an aerial drone tour of a snowy James River. I love this! We live in a wonderous place.

This morning's Patron longread

Why do we work so hard?

From Patron Caitlyn: A real interesting take on the contemporary culture of nonstop work. While I fully recognize that rest is good and that I should get more of it, I do relate to a lot of this. I am lucky enough that my work really is fun and I enjoy doing it.

Not all work, of course. When my father was a boy on the family farm, the tasks he and his father did in the fields – the jobs many people still do – were gruelling and thankless. I once visited the textile mill where my grandmother worked for a time. The noise of the place was so overpowering that it was impossible to think. But my work – the work we lucky few well-paid professionals do every day, as we co-operate with talented people while solving complex, interesting problems – is fun. And I find that I can devote surprising quantities of time to it. What is less clear to me, and to so many of my peers, is whether we should do so much of it.

If you’d like your longread to show up here, go chip in a couple bucks on the ol’ Patreon.

Good morning, RVA: Chesterfield’s bizarre take on buses, Medicaid expansion is powerful, and show flyers from the past

Good morning, RVA: Snow Day 2, Secret of the Ooze