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VPM Daily Newscast: September 2, 2021

VPM's daily newscast contains all your Central Virginia news in just 5 to 10 minutes. Episodes are recorded the night before so you can wake up prepared.           

Listeners can subscribe through NPR One, Apple Podcasts, Megaphone, Spotify and wherever you get your podcasts.       

Here’s a recap of the top stories on the morning of Thursday, September 2, 2021: 

  • If you want to legally buy marijuana in Virginia, medical dispensaries are your only option. But a product called Delta-8 has many of the same effects, and it’s flying off the shelves at local stores. Ben Paviour has more

  • While Virginia once again won the title as the top state for business by CNBC this year, the commonwealth still has room to grow as a place for workers according to Oxfam’s new rankings. Oxfam, a non-profit working to end poverty around the world, annually assesses each state’s wage policies, labor laws, and worker protections to come up with its index. In 2020, Virginia wound up at the very bottom of the heap, but in 2021 made great strides. The commonwealth came in at 23rd overall, thanks to the increased minimum wage, as well as new state policies that include protections for domestic and pregnant workers. 

  • If you’re going to the beach this weekend you may face a hazard you haven't thought about: Your beach umbrella. As Paul Bibeau, from our partner station WHRV, reports, lawmakers are trying to make them safer. 

  • In the same week that Chesterfield County Public Schools announced pay raises for its school bus drivers, Henrico schools announced a similar hourly rate increase yesterday.  Starting with their first paycheck later this month, new hires and current drivers will see a 15% jump in pay to just over $17. Drivers who are already receiving that amount will see an additional increase of just over two percent. The district is looking to fill about 100 vacancies. School starts for Henrico students September 8. 

  • Starting tomorrow, all 12 state-run mental health hospitals will move to a restricted visitor policy. The Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services says the change is due to high community transmission rates of COVID-19.  Restricted visitation means visitors, including family and friends, will not be allowed into the facilities. There are exceptions for patients who are minors.  Officials say hospitals should be contacted directly if there are questions about who can visit and when.