Good Morning, RVA: More violence, more budgets, more mowing, more heroes

And, dangit, more rain.

Photo by: nodigio

Good morning, RVA! It’s 58 °F, cloudy, and there’s a dang good chance of rain today. Plus, highs might not even top 60 °F. It’s the opposite of yesterday!

Water cooler

Richmond police are reporting the City’s 23rd murder: Hasheen El Slaughter was shot to death on the Southside this past Sunday. You can view our page of 2016’s murder data here.

Yesterday, the City released a draft of the School Investment Funding Plan (PDF). This comes (one business day after this year’s budget had been decided) from the Revenue & Finances workgroup of the Mayor’s “figure out how the heck to fund schools” task force. In it are discussion of debt capacity and revenue options, many of which Council considered during this year’s deliberations and decided not to pursue. It’s worth checking out, especially for the tax comparison graphs that start on page 21. Finally, comparisons between Richmond and peer cities–not just Chesterfield and Henrico (although those comparisons are there, too). The report would also like you to be very aware that the current levels of school funding are historic. While true, you should also remember schools have been historically underfunded for a trillion years. We’re just catching up.

Related: Louis Llovio has the recap from last night’s School Board meeting. They’ve decided to not close any school at all. School Board has a budget gap of $10,670,567. The superintendent’s team presented them with a very long list of balancing options (PPT), but with school closings off the table, the job of closing that budget gap gets more…complicated.

I would have never guessed in a million years that mowing would be this summer’s hot topic of choice for the city, but here we are! Michael Paul Williams has a nice piece about Groundwork RVA working with students at George Wythe to get the grass cut at nearby schools. 2016: The Year Everyone Needs To Pitch In™.

Richmond, don’t ever change.

You need to listen to these audio interviews Susan Howson has put together for National Foster Care Month. Some people out there are real life superheroes that don’t solve their problems by lazily punching each other at an airport. If you’d like for these interviews to show up in the podcast player of your choice, you can subscribe!

ESPN launched The Undefeated today, a news site focused on “the intersection of race, sports, and culture.” Two awesome things: 1) Their about section is a Maya Angelou quote, and 2) they’ve got a Historically Black College and Universities section!


  • Squirrels face Trenton tonight at 7:00 PM tonight and, with some luck, put an end to their double-digit losing streak.
  • Nats and Mets, 7:10 PM.

This morning’s longread

I Made A Linguistics Professor Listen To A Blink-182 Song And Analyze The Accent

Let’s go, don’t wait, this night’s almost over…

I called up a few linguists and music historians to try to get at the heart of the pop-punk voice. But it turns out that when you make a linguist listen to a Blink-182 song, you get more than you expected. Pop-punk vocals are on the forefront of shifting regional dialects and, especially, a major vocal change happening in California in the past few decades. The three-minute pop-punk song, one of the dumbest forms of music ever conceived (in a good way, I’d say), maybe isn’t so dumb, after all.

This morning’s Instagram

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Ross Catrow

Founder and publisher of RVANews.

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