What’s News Today: General Assembly returns, redistricting

Here's a look at some of the stories we'll be following today as they make headlines across the country and Southwest Virginia.>

What's News Today (WSLS 10)

ROANOKE, Va. – The Virginia General Assembly will convene in special session today. According to Governor Northam, the session will focus on the budget and criminal and social justice reform. The General Assembly will need finalize the state budget. The process was interrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic. It will also discuss COVID-19 relief measures, including requiring paid sick leave, combating price gouging and prohibiting garnishment of stimulus checks. The body will also explore criminal justice and police reform. 10 News will have a crew in Richmond.

Danville will give its final presentation for the 2020 All-America City Award. Danville is one of 22 cities from across the country competing for the award. The National Civic League recognizes communities that demonstrate innovative, inclusive and effective efforts to tackle critical challenges. Danville plans to highlight the Fit Mobile program, Youth Health Equity Leadership Institute and Community Health Worker initiative. The city of Roanoke made its final presentation yesterday.

The League of Women Voters of Lynchburg will hold an online discussion about the Redistricting Amendment. The proposed amendment to the state constitution will appear on November’s ballot. If passed, a commission of sixteen people will be tasked with redrawing house and senate districts across the Commonwealth, using the most recent census data. The commission will be made up of sixteen people, eight from the legislature and eight citizens. If the commission’s plans are not approved by the General Assembly, the State Supreme Court would take over.

The Department of Health will open a free COVID-19 testing site today in Buena Vista. An appointment is needed to get a test and will be given to those experiencing symptoms or who are in close contact with a person with the virus. Tests will be done from 7:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. at the Rockbridge Regional Communications Center.

If you have a child in Lynchburg City Schools, you can pick up a Chromebook for your child today. They will be issues to those in third through sixth grade, as well as new secondary students. Pickup is between 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. Additional times are scheduled for Wednesday and Thursday. We have a list of sites on wsls dot com.

The mayor and emergency manager in Sparta, N. C., will give an update after the 5.1 magnitude earthquake on August 9th. They will give an update on damage assessments, which they say are worse than initially though, recovery and the availability of money for rebuilding.