Legislative Q and A: As session begins, Wilt prepares for budget, ERA, absentee voting and gun debates
With the 2020 General Assembly session beginning today, Del. Tony Wilt, R-Broadway, answered questions about how he expects to approach key issues, such as the Equal Rights Amendment, the commonwealth’s budget, what’s next with I-81, what it will be like serving in the minority and what he views as a threat of “radicals.”
And so it begins. Hopes for and speculation about the future abound, as does list-making for a fresh year. As we set off for the next 12 months, get ready for plenty of “20/20 vision” references. In that spirit, here are 20 questions (in no particular order) for 2020 that address issues that will likely shape Harrisonburg for the next decade and beyond.
Beneath a political cloud in Richmond, legislators emerged with policy ‘success,’ says Harrisonburg’s delegate
Despite a legislative session that The Washington Post described as “the strangest … in anyone’s memory” amid a trio of scandals in Virginia’s executive branch, Harrisonburg’s state Del. Tony Wilt said it ended up being a “very successful legislative year.”
Ben Cline spent part of December reaching out to his new constituents, starting with the four communities he lost in November as the longtime Republican state delegate from Lexington prepared to go to Congress. But the Washington experience, which officially begins with his swearing in Thursday, will likely get tougher for Cline as he enters the minority party caucus in a divided Congress and amid a government shutdown.
As momentum grows for I-81 upgrades, lawmakers prepare to pick between tolls and taxes to cover the $2 billion cost
Toll or tax? That’s a question that state legislators will begin debating next month when the General Assembly convenes for its 2019 session. At issue is Interstate 81 – the increasingly congested, dangerous and routinely backed-up artery that carries hundreds of billions of dollars in goods each year straight through Harrisonburg and western Virginia.
Hburg council candidates reveal differences over priorities, ‘unpopular’ decisions and even scooters
As the five city council candidates wrapped up a wide-ranging forum Tuesday that veered from scooters and golf courses to schools and I-81, they had to answer one last doozy: What’s an unpopular decision that must be made for Harrisonburg?
The divergent answers to the final question revealed the competing philosophies and approaches of the five, who are vying in the Nov. 6 election for two spots on the council.