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VPM Daily Newscast: September 17, 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.           

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Here’s a recap of the top stories on the morning of Friday, September 17, 2021: 

  • In Chesterfield County schools, the number of positive Covid-19 cases and kids in quarantine continue to rise. As Ian Stewart reports, one preventive measure the district could take is out of reach. 

  • The commission drawing Virginia’s new General Assembly and congressional maps voted unanimously this week that it won’t be guided by political data or where incumbents live. According to the Virginia Mercury, the Redistricting Commission will have map-drawers ignore that information in an attempt to make the process as neutral as possible. The commission will also keep in mind city, county and town boundaries, as well as communities with shared interests. Finalized General Assembly maps are expected early next month and will face a vote from the legislature. If the proposals fail, the state Supreme Court will draw the districts. 

  • Nearly three-quarters of Virginia voters view the health of the Chesapeake Bay as important. And majorities believe in protecting its wildlife and preserving it for future generations. That’s according to a new poll from multiple non-profits including the Chesapeake Conservancy. The Chesapeake Bay has historically suffered from pollution. Virginia and other mid-Atlantic states are trying to clean it up by a 2025 federal deadline. This story was reported by partner station WHRV. 

  • In-person voting begins today in Virginia’s November election. Additionally, it's when the state Department of Elections will begin sending out absentee ballots. Those ballots must be postmarked by Election Day – November 2nd – or dropped off by 7 p.m. on Election Day. The last day to request an absentee ballot is October 22nd. Voters do not need a reason to vote absentee. In person early voting ends October 30th. On the November ballot are the races for Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Attorney General, and the House of Delegates. For more information call the Department of Elections at (800) 552-9745, or visit elections.virginia.gov. 

  • Petersburg has appointed a new Deputy City Manager. Tangela Innis, who has worked with the city for nine years, was promoted to the position, according to The Progress-Index. She was previously the Director of Public Works and Utilities. Innis was hired from a pool of 30 applicants, according to the city. City Manager Stuart Turille Jr. said Innis “demonstrated strong innovative leadership, professionalism and dedication to Petersburg.”