Good Morning, RVA: School closing secrets, speed limit decreases, and 7th District open seats

Is it done raining for today?

Photo by: pasa47

Good morning, RVA! It’s 60 °F, and what’s that tip tapping on the window? Just some more rain, no big deal–or, wait, super annoying deal! Looking at the radar map, though, I think most of the heavy weather will slip around us, and we should dry out sometime before lunch. Let’s keep our fingers crossed, OK?

Water cooler

Police are reporting that one of the victims; Rashawn A. Brathwaite, 23; of yesterday’s double shooting has died. At 11:13 AM yesterday, officers were called to the 4000 block of Midlothian Turnpike for a report of a double shooting. They arrived to find two adult males outside of the apartment complex each suffering from an apparent gunshot wound. This is the 21st murder in 2016, and the first in May.

Teresa Cole gets heart-eyes emojis for this absolutely. incredible piece on why Richmond Public Schools would want (or need) to close schools in the first place. This is the most informative thing I’ve read in a long time and is definitely a thing you must read. A must-read, if you will.

Last night’s City Council meeting was a breeze, with almost everything of note getting continued until future meetings. One citizen commenter brought up the low quality of the region’s piecemeal paratransit system–GRTC’s CARE covers some of the area, Access Chesterfield works for Chesterfield residents, plus there are a bunch of other options out there. It’s a very complicated and expensive problem to tackle, so it was good to hear Councilman Agelasto say that the Richmond Regional Planning District Commission is working on a truly regional plan for paratransit, which I will do my best to find and report back about! Other than that, speed limits were reduced on Riverside Drive to 25 mph. A similar ordinance for Semmes Avenue was amended to reduce speeds to 30 mph (instead of 25 mph), and was continued–but that speed reduction is totally in your future, Southsiders! Check out The Boring Show later today for audio from the formal and informal meetings (where council heard a BRT presentation).

As of right now, the 7th District has no candidate for School Board. You have until June 14th to get your name on the ballot.

Did you hear about how King & Queen County shut down their school system this past Friday after the high school principal resigned? It’s a curious situation, one that isn’t really made all that more clear by this piece in the RTD by Louis Llovio. Because the school board doesn’t have a video system in place (Richmond Public Schools uses BoardDocs, which I’m sure is expensive but allows us to see exactly what happens at each meeting), we’re left to wonder what in the world’s going on out there.

The GWAR B-Q has announced the first couple bands playing this year’s weekend of debauchery (direct quote). Lamb of God, American Nightmare, and Lagwagon make for a pretty compelling lineup…

Both the federal government and the state of North Carolina have sued each other over the latter’s bathroom bill. To the courts we go!


  • Squirrels got blanked, 0-4, by Harrisburg. They’ve now lost four straight, but will valiantly try again tonight at 6:35 PM (assuming the weather holds).
  • Nats got back to their winning ways with a 5-4 victory over the Tigers. That series continues tonight at 7:05 PM.
  • Caps and Penguins face off at 8:00 PM in another must-win for Washington.

This morning’s longread

Is It Okay to Use White Emoji?

Ahhhh complicated!

But this effect may also signal a squeamishness on the part of white people. The folks I talked to before writing this story said it felt awkward to use an affirmatively white emoji; at a time when skin-tone modifiers are used to assert racial identity, proclaiming whiteness felt uncomfortably close to displaying “white pride,” with all the baggage of intolerance that carries. At the same time, they said, it feels like co-opting something that doesn’t exactly belong to white people–weren’t skin-tone modifiers designed so people of color would be represented online?

This morning’s Instagram

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Ross Catrow

Founder and publisher of RVANews.

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