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

Good morning, RVA: Assessments, new podcast, and beer knowledge

Good morning, RVA! It's 70 °F, and we’ve got a break in the rain! For the entirety of today, there is no significant chance of rain, showers, or thunderstorms. I guess, as a result, the high is back up in the 90s—but still!

Water cooler

Jake Burns at WTVR looks at the rising real estate assessments in the City and talks to the Assessors Office about how they get their job done. I do take a little bit of issue with the chosen headline of “Longtime Church Hill resident moves to Henrico amid property value surge,” which I thought implied that a person moved to Henrico after their property tax bill increased. Instead, this is really a story about the lack of affordable housing in Richmond forcing people to look outside the City when buying a home (necessarily increasing their transportation costs in turn).

Chris Hilbert will host his regularly scheduled 3rd District meeting tonight at the Fourth Police Precinct (2219 Chamberlayne Avenue) from 6:00–7:30 PM. While the proposed Brook Road bike lane is not on the current agenda, this is another chance for you—especially if you’re a 3rd District resident—to get in front of him and let him know your thoughts and feelings on the matter. If you’re in need of talking points, Bike Walk RVA has you covered.

Do you remember a while back when Chesterfield’s Board of Supervisors refused to fund their Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office’s request for more humans to review police body-camera footage? The Board claimed it was an unfunded mandate from the state; the Office responded by no longer prosecuting misdemeanors—which I thought was kind of the ultimate “well, now this is happening.” Vanessa Remmers at the Richmond Times-Dispatch says the Board of Supervisors has caved and approved some funds and clarifies for me what “no longer prosecuting misdemeanors” really meant.

Today, at City Council’s Governmental Operations Standing Committee meeting, Councilmember Agelasto will introduce a resolution (RES. 2018-R072) to request that the state include Richmond in the list of jurisdictions that can prohibit City employees from lobbying up to one year after they quit working for the City. Currently just Bedford, Fauquier, James City, Pittsylvania, Stafford, Charlottesville, and Virginia Beach have this authority. I don’t know the impetus for this bill, but, sure, I will irresponsibly speculate that the proposed Coliseum redevelopment may have something to do with it!

Alert: A new local podcast! Megan Wilson, writing for Style Weekly, lets me know about Valley Haggard’s Life in 10 Minutes project. Folks write stories from their life in 10 minutes and then read them aloud—now in podcast format!

Carl Hott at the RTD has a beer explainer on lagers vs. ales and checks in on some local breweries who buck the all-IPA trend and experiment with some more chill lagers. I’ll tell you one reason why local craft breweries favor ales over lagers: it just takes longer to make a lager.


  • Squirrels split a double header with Erie, snapping their losing skid. They return home to the Diamond tonight at 6:35 PM against Reading. Tickets are available online.
  • Kickers fell, 2-4, to LaLiga’s RCD Espanyol.
  • Nats beat the Brewers, 7-3, and begin a new series against the Marlins tonight at 7:10 PM.

This morning's longread

So Why Not 29?

Journalism—and I guess any specialized field—is full of weird stuff like this.

So where did the term originate? Some say the mark began during a time when stories were submitted via telegraph, with "-30-" denoting "the end" in Morse code. Another theory suggests that the first telegraphed news story had 30 words. Others claim the "-30-" comes from a time when stories were written in longhand — X marked the end of a sentence, XX the end of a paragraph and XXX meant the end of a story. The Roman numerals XXX translate to 30. But these are hardly the only explanations, theories and guesses for the rise of "-30-".

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Good morning, RVA: Sports tourism, pickles, and ways to get involved

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