Virginia’s sales tax covers almost everything you buy, from athletic socks to zippers. But it doesn’t apply to medicine, contact lenses and certain other personal health items. Now, the General Assembly is considering adding feminine hygiene products to the list of exemptions.
Del. Mark Keam (Fairfax County) introduced House Bill 952, which seeks to remove the sales tax on tampons and sanitary napkins in Virginia. Currently these items are taxed at the standard rate, like most other items: 6 percent in Northern Virginia and Hampton Roads, and 5.3 percent in the rest of the state.
“I think that most people, Republican and Democrats, would agree that this is an unfair tax,” Keam said Wednesday in an interview in his office at Capital Square. “It’s not equitable for women to have to pay a tax on something that guys don’t have to spend money on.”
Virginia is one of 40 states that tax tampons and sanitary napkins. Of the 10 states that don’t tax these products, five deliberately changed their laws specifically to end the policy. The other five do not have a sales tax at all.
After an exchange of gunfire Tuesday that left one man dead and another injured, the two brothers who orchestrated the armed occupation of a remote central Oregon wildlife refuge were taken into custody while traveling outside the area, along with six of their followers.
Then, early Wednesday the government shut down the area, initiating what authorities called a “containment” with checkpoints and promising to arrest any unauthorized people attempting to travel into the refuge.
AUSTIN, Texas — A Houston grand jury investigating undercover footage of Planned Parenthood found no wrongdoing Monday by the abortion provider and instead indicted anti-abortion activists involved in making the videos that provoked outrage among Republican leaders nationwide.
David Daleiden, founder of the Center for Medical Progress, was indicted on a felony charge of tampering with a governmental record and a misdemeanor count related to purchasing human organs. Another activist, Sandra Merritt, was also indicted on a charge of tampering with a governmental record. It’s the first time anyone in the group has been charged criminally since the videos started surfacing last year.
In a statement announcing the indictment, Harris County District Attorney Devon Anderson didn’t provide details on the charges, including what record or records were allegedly tampered with and why Daleiden faces a charge related to buying human organs. Anderson’s office said it could not provide details until the documents charging Daleiden and Merritt were formally made public, which was expected later Monday.
“We were called upon to investigate allegations of criminal conduct by Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast,” Anderson’s statement said. “As I stated at the outset of this investigation, we must go where the evidence leads us.”
The anti-abortion Center for Medical Progress has released several covertly shot videos of Planned Parenthood officials discussing the handling of fetal tissue from abortions. The center claims that Planned Parenthood illegally sold fetal tissue; Planned Parenthood officials have denied any wrongdoing and have said the videos were misleadingly edited.
It seems like the grand jury agreed with Planned Parenthood. Sometimes people get so wrapped up in what they believe that they justify altering facts and the truth. Apparently this is what happened here.
Get your mind out of the gutter! Seriously…what do people do who are totally dependent on electricity for all their entertainment if they no longer have electricity? I live with 2 other people. I asked the question. Everyone just sort of dropped in their tracks. What would we do?
We came up with reading, cards and board games to break the boredom. Actually I thought about sleeping. Then I immediately started charging kindles, iPads, tablets, and power chargers. We dug out an old ups or whatever you call them.
So what do adults do when there are no electronics? What forms of entertainment are there to do during blizzards? Your input is needed!
Glen Frey was simply too young to die. What talent. He was an excellent guitarist, talented song writer and his vocals were exceptional. Eagles, the group, have had a following that spans 40 plus years. I simply can’t stop listening to their songs. I even broke down and brought my Eagles best into the house, out of the car.
I really did go to Winslow Arizona about 10 years ago just to see the Standing on the Corner statue. That fire made it unsafe to get up to the actual park.
Winslow is right on route 66. All of those small towns along that route really dried up once the interstate went in. Winslow was just cool.
Thinking about favorite songs, I can’t make up my mind. I guess Lying Eyes, New Kid in Town, Peaceful Easy Feeling, Take it Easy, and of course, Hotel California. I only saw them once. I sat in the nose-bleed section at RFK. I paid a fortune for the tickets also. I wouldn’t trade it for anything though.
U.S. officials stressed that the El Niño pattern alone does not account of the year’s record warmth. “The interesting thing is that 2015 did not start with an El Niño,” Schmidt said. “It was warm right from the beginning.”
Because a strong El Niño still is in place, “2016 is expected to be an exceptionally warm year, and perhaps even another record,” Schmidt said.
The release of the 2015 temperature data prompted statements from leading Democratic presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders. Clinton, in a Twitter posting, said, “Climate change is real. It’s hurting our planet and our people. We can’t afford a president who ignores the science.”
There was no immediate comments from the major GOP contenders, several of whom have been openly skeptical of the mainstream scientific view that human activity is causing the planet to warm. Front-runner Donald Trump has dismissed climate change as a hoax.
According to the NOAA analaysis on Wednesday, every month in 2015 broke previous temperature records except for two: January and April. NOAA also announced Wednesday that for December, the “temperature departure from average was also the highest departure among all months in the historical record and the first time a monthly departure has reached 2°F.”
From a climate policy perspective, the warmth of 2015 is also highly significant. Global leaders in Paris agreed in December that the planet should not be allowed to warm 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial temperatures — and ideally, warming should be limited to 1.5 degrees Celsius if possible.
Which presidential contenders do not believe that there is climate change? Read more…
Prince William Board of County Supervisors Chairman At-large Corey Stewart (R) announced a controversial proposal to eliminate all county concealed handgun permitting fees.
If passed, Prince William County will be the first locality in Virginia to eliminate permit fees, and Stewart expects other jurisdictions may do the same.
According to Stewart’s media release, he believes the proposed policy would benefit all of the law-abiding citizens who pass existing state background checks and meet state statutory requirements for the issuance of the permit.
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — A legislative panel has rejected a bill to decriminalize adultery in Virginia.
Media outlets report that the Senate Courts of Justice Committee killed the measure on a voice vote Monday.
State law classifies marital infidelity as a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of $250. Democratic Sen. Scott Surovell of Fairfax County proposed keeping the $250 penalty but making adultery a civil offense.
Surovell said that in the last decade, there have been just eight successful prosecutions for adultery in Virginia. He said only about a dozen states treat adultery as a crime.
Republican Sen. Ryan McDougle of Hanover County said that while there may not be many convictions, the charge can be a useful tool in prosecuting other offenses.
Give me a break. Virginia still really wants in your bedroom (or motel room or neighbor’s bedroom)
“It needs to be very clear that these buildings will never, ever return to the federal government,” said LaVoy Finicum, one of the leaders of the armed occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge.”
Tinicum’s words sound to be like enemy take over of our lands. They get what they deserve including being shot.yI am all for not making martyrs of these criminals but they also have seized government property.
They need to be removed. Apparently they have free egress to come and go at will. That needs to stop. Let’s see how long they last with limited food and water. They want to play hardball. So do I.
TEHRAN AND VIENNA — Iran will release four detained Americans in exchange for seven Iranians held or charged in the United States, U.S. and Iranian officials said Saturday in a major diplomatic breakthrough announced as implementation of a landmark nuclear deal appeared imminent. A fifth American detained in Iran, a student, was released in a move unrelated to the swap, U.S. officials said.
Washington Post reporter Jason Rezaian, former U.S. Marine Amir Hekmati, pastor Saeed Abedini and Nosratollah Khosravi-Roodsari, whose name had not been previously made public, were to be flown from Iran to Switzerland aboard a Swiss aircraft and then transported to a U.S. military hospital in Landstuhl, Germany, for medical treatment, U.S. officials said.
Rezaian’s wife and mother were expected to be on the plane.
This breakthrough is indeed good news. It is time for Iran to start behaving itself and stop acting like a rogue terrorist nation.
Good for Team America for implementing the release of these captives. Hopefully their health is good and their homecoming uneventful.
Sometimes these international issues take diplomacy. Too many people often want to throw on their proverbial “sh!t-kicker” boots and go barging in, risking the safety of the very people they want to rescue.