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First Lady Suzanne S. Youngkin Joins Women-focused Roundtable on Workforce Apprenticeships 

~ The First Lady engaged in a roundtable discussion about The Apprentice School at Newport News Shipbuilding’s women-focused programs and example for unique training opportunities ~

The First Lady greets students at The Apprentice School at Newport News Shipbuilding.

NEWPORT NEWS, VA – The First Lady today visited The Apprentice School at Newport News Shipbuilding for a roundtable discussion as part of her newly announced Women+girls (W+g) campaign. The First Lady joined Dr. Latitia McCane, director of education at The Apprentice School at Newport News Shipbuilding, and panelists with an audience with female high schoolers and their school counselors to learn more about the school’s training programs.

“The Apprentice School at Newport News Shipbuilding is a shining example of best-in-class training programs and educational opportunities for Virginia’s workers. Led by a remarkable woman and providing tools to girls seeking sustainable work in in-demand jobs, we celebrate its positive impact on workforce preparedness here in the Commonwealth,” said the First Lady Suzanne S. Youngkin.

“The Apprentice School at Newport News Shipbuilding develops future shipyard leaders,” said Dr. Latitia McCane, director of education for The Apprentice School at Newport News Shipbuilding. “As the First Lady focuses on opportunities for young women, I hope many will consider the skilled trades we are hiring for right now. There are more opportunities now than ever before for women with technical skills to not only secure high-paying jobs today, but to advance into leadership roles over the course of their careers. Having a diverse workforce comprising a wide variety of skills, abilities, experiences and perspectives is essential to our shipbuilding success at HII.”

“Apprenticeships, and other work-based learning opportunities, are vital to preparing Virginians to fill current and future workforce needs. We must reimagine how we do workforce development in the Commonwealth, and apprenticeships provide a proven alternative pathway to high paying five and six figure successful careers in the high-demand jobs of the future, with little or no student debt,” said Secretary of Labor Bryan Slater.

“I credit my experience as one of the first women to enter The Apprentice School at Newport News Shipbuilding with giving me the courage to take a path less travelled – one leading to a long and fulfilling career,” said Secretary of Administration Lyn McDermid.

Through Women+girls (W+g), the First Lady is focused on connecting, celebrating and championing Virginia’s women and girls through two, primary pillars of focus: Wellbeing and Workforce. Learn more about the First Lady’s Women+girls (W+g) initiative by visiting her new web page. Check the First Lady’s website for updates and sign up for her monthly newsletter for more information in the coming months.

The First Lady sat among the panelists at The Apprentice School at Newport News Shipbuilding’s roundtable.

Dr. Latitia McCane gave a tour of The Apprentice School at Newport News Shipbuilding to the First Lady, Secretary of Administration Lyn McDermid and Deputy Secretary of Commerce and Trade Chelsea Jenkins.

High school students and their teachers joined the First Lady at The Apprentice School at Newport News Shipbuilding.

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Governor Glenn Youngkin and Senator L. Louise Lucas Set Special Election for 7th Senate District

RICHMOND, VA – Governor Glenn Youngkin and Senate President Pro Tempore L. Louise Lucas today concurrently issued writs of election declaring a special election in the 7th Senate District for January 10, 2023. The seat was previously held by Senator Jen A. Kiggans, who resigned on November 15, 2022.

The full writ of election from Governor Youngkin is available here.

The full writ of election from Senator Lucas is available here.

The last day for candidates to file as a candidate is November 21, 2022. Information regarding candidacy requirements can be found on the Department of Elections website.

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Virginia Tax Bulletin 22-12

Reduced Retail Sales and Use Tax Rate on Food Purchased for Home Consumption and Essential Personal Hygiene Products

Effective January 1, 2023, groceries (food purchased for home consumption and essential personal hygiene products) will be taxed at a reduced 1% rate.

Background

Under prior law, groceries were subject to a reduced 1.5% state sales tax rate and 1% local option sales tax rate for a total rate of 2.5%. With this change, they’ll remain subject to the 1% local option retail sales and use tax, and will continue to be exempt from all regional and additional local tax rates.

View the Tax Bulletin

If you have additional questions, go to www.tax.virginia.gov, or contact 804.367.8031 for individual income tax questions and 804.367.8037 for business tax questions.

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Governor’s Environmental Excellence Awards

Apply for the 2023
Governor’s Environmental Excellence Awards

Has your company been working to reduce its environmental footprint? Do you have a stellar sustainability initiative?

Did you develop an innovative strategy that benefited the environment?

Consider applying for the 2023 Governor’s Environmental Excellence Awards. The awards acknowledge successful
and innovative programs and projects throughout the Commonwealth in the following categories:

Environmental project

Land conservation

Implementation of the Virginia Outdoors Plan

Sustainability Program

Commonwealth Greening of Government

Applications are due Dec. 8, 2022

Learn More Here

 

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Dominion shared solar minimum bill to remain $55.10 per month

Dominion Energy customers who enroll in a new shared solar program will be required to pay a monthly minimum bill that critics say is too high. But those interested in a different solar program for people who live in multifamily housing like apartments will see a lower administrative fee than initially proposed by the utility.

The State Corporation Commission issued two decisions Thursday that will affect utility customers who face barriers to installing rooftop solar on their own home. One keeps the minimum monthly bill for shared solar customers at $55.10. The other decision lowers an administrative fee for the multifamily solar program from $87.68 to $16.78.

Both programs were created by legislation in the 2020 session to expand options for solar use, with the shared solar program intended for those with solar restrictions like shady yards. The multifamily solar program was intended to be used by those living in apartments.

The decisions were made after the commission was asked to reconsider an earlier decision on the monthly minimum bill for the shared solar program and reject an administrative charge proposed by Dominion for the multifamily program.

Read More…

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Governor Glenn Youngkin Releases Virginia’s Energy Plan

RICHMOND, VA — Today, Governor Glenn Youngkin unveiled the 2022 Virginia Energy Plan in Lynchburg, Virginia. The plan focuses on an all-of-the-above approach that harnesses nuclear, natural gas, renewables, and new energy sources to satisfy the increasing energy needs of the Commonwealth. The Plan also outlines an increase in nuclear energy and an objective to make Virginia the world’s leading nuclear innovation hub.

“A growing Virginia must have reliable, affordable and clean energy for Virginia’s families and businesses. We need to shift to realistic and dynamic plans. The 2022 Energy Plan will meet the power demands of a growing economy and ensures Virginia has that reliable, affordable, clean and growing supply of power by embracing an all-of-the-above energy plan that includes natural gas, nuclear, renewables and the exploration of emerging sources to satisfy the growing needs of Commonwealth residents and businesses,” said Governor Glenn Youngkin.

“Energy is a key driver of economic productivity and growth. Existing businesses are reliant on the grid to deliver energy on-demand every second of every day. Businesses considering Virginia as a state to open or relocate their businesses expect energy ready sites and choice of energy generation sources. All Virginians and businesses deserve access to reliable, affordable, clean and abundant energy. As we explore various pathways to managing the energy transition underway, we look forward to supporting innovative thinking across the Commonwealth to support the Governor’s goal of making Virginia the best place to live, work and raise a family,” said Secretary of Commerce and Trade Caren Merrick. 

“I am thrilled that the 2022 Virginia Energy Plan recognizes Virginia’s unique nuclear advantage. Two of the nation’s largest nuclear manufacturing companies are located here in Lynchburg. They offer exciting opportunities to research and develop cutting-edge nuclear generation technologies that will create new, high-paying jobs in the Commonwealth while delivering reliable energy to Virginians. I am also glad Governor Youngkin’s plan includes actions to protect our natural resources, including farmland, rivers, and streams,” said House Commerce and Energy Chair, Delegate Kathy Byron. 

“The Plan’s strong support for an all-the-above energy approach is a meaningful step to ensure that Virginia has a reliable energy grid into the future. Virginians deserve an energy portfolio that prioritizes affordability, innovation, and makes real investments in nuclear power generation,” said Republican Leader Pro Tempore, Senator Steve Newman. 

“The Virginia Energy team is excited to have the opportunity to work with the Governor and his Administration on pursuing an energy plan for Virginia that explores all of the many options as well as challenges in the transition of existing energy supply resources to clean energy resources. Existing assets represent significant consumer investment and are a critical component of a clean energy transition in order to maintain reliability and affordability. Acknowledging all of the emerging clean energy technologies as compliments to wind, solar, and storage offers flexbility and the opportunity to advance those that align with the Virginia advantage. Stakeholder outreach has been extensive and offered a wide range of forums to facilitate feedback in the development of the 2022 Virginia Energy Plan. Our team understands the hard work will begin after the Plan is released and looks forward to the next phase of planning and implementation,” said Virginia Department of Energy Director John Warren. 

Read the 2022 Virginia Energy Plan here.

Watch the roll out of the 2022 Virginia Energy Plan here

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ACC: CERCLA Listing is an Expensive, Ineffective and Unworkable Means to Achieve Remediation

The Proposed CERCLA Designation Would Impose Tremendous Costs on These Parties Without Defined Cleanup Standards, Making It Impossible for These Entities to Prepare for The Impact of This Rule

WASHINGTON (August 26, 2022) — The American Chemistry Council (ACC) released the following statement on the proposed Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) listing for PFOA and PFOS:

“We support strong, science-based regulations that are protective of public health and the environment, but a new proposed CERCLA listing is an expensive, ineffective and unworkable means to achieve remediation for these chemicals.

“CERCLA is complicated, results in extensive delays and is fraught with unintended consequences. There are other more effective and timely means to address potential site remediation through existing regulatory processes.

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Virginia Manufacturing Development Commission Elections

We are pleased to congratulate Delegate Kathy J. Byron for being unanimously elected Chair of the Virginia Manufacturing Development Commission. We also congratulate Jeremy McPike for being elected Vice Chair. Really looking forward to working with them both!

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Youngkin administration outlines plan to withdraw Virginia from carbon market by regulation

Gov. Glenn Youngkin’s administration announced their newest plans for how they intend to withdraw Virginia from a regional carbon market Wednesday, a move critics say is not allowed by law, would drain important state programs of funding and would hurt the fight against climate change.

Acting Secretary of Natural and Historic Resources Travis Voyles said at a State Air Pollution Control Board meeting that the administration plans to withdraw Virginia from the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative through changes to the regulations that govern the state’s participation in the market.

The regulatory process typically takes 18 to 24 months from start to finish, after which the air board will vote on repealing the regulation.

The move is a pivot from the approach outlined in an executive order Youngkin issued at the start of his term. That plan called for a two-track approach that would first repeal the regulation through an emergency provision and then eliminate it permanently through the normal regulatory process.

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Virginia Taxpayers to Receive Rebates This Fall

Qualifying Taxpayers Eligible for Up to $250 for Individual Filers; Up to $500 for Those Filing Jointly

RICHMOND, VA—This fall, approximately 3.2 million eligible taxpayers will receive one-time tax rebates of up to $250 if they filed individually, and up to $500 if they filed jointly. To be eligible, taxpayers must file by November 1, 2022 and have had a 2021 tax liability. Starting September 19, taxpayers can go to tax.virginia.gov/rebate and check their eligibility for this one-time tax rebate. We are processing the rebates “first in/first out.” Those who filed by July 1 should expect their rebate to arrive in late October. Those who file between July 1 and November 1 will receive their rebate within 4 months of their file date.

Taxpayers who received a state tax refund by direct deposit this year will likely receive their one-time tax rebate by direct deposit in the same bank account. All other eligible taxpayers will receive their rebate by paper check in the mail.

“As Virginians face high inflation and prices coming from policies set in Washington, these one-time tax rebates will help families lower the cost of living,” said Governor Glenn Youngkin. “Past administrations have overtaxed Virginians and by returning taxpayer money to Virginia’s taxpayers we are ensuring that hard working Virginians get to keep more of their paycheck during these difficult economic times.”

Debt Setoff Rules Required for Rebates

If a taxpayer owes money to Virginia Tax, or another state or local agency, the Commonwealth will use their tax rebate to satisfy that debt before sending the taxpayer the remainder of the rebate (along with contact information for the agency that was owed). In the event a taxpayer owes more than the amount of the one-time tax rebate, Virginia Tax will send the taxpayer a letter explaining the use of the rebate toward the debt as well as contact information for the agency that was owed.

Full Article

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