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Salvation Army Kettle Kick-Off

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When:
November 13, 2020 @ 11:00 am – 1:00 pm
2020-11-13T11:00:00-05:00
2020-11-13T13:00:00-05:00
Where:
Rural King
465 South St | Front Royal VA 22630
Contact:
Lt. Michael Fadler
540-635-4020

Salvation Army Front Royal Corps’ new lieutenant, Michael Fadler, will make a special announcement at the Corps’ annual Kettle Kick-Off, which will be held at 11:00 am on Friday, November 13, in front of Rural King. This year’s Kick-Off will also be streamed live via the Corps’ Facebook page.

“I can’t reveal the specifics of this announcement, but I will say that it is very timely and relevant, given these difficult times,” said Lt. Fadler.

Each year, the Kick-Off begins the Salvation Army’s Kettle Campaign. This year’s theme is “Rescue Christmas.” With the current pandemic causing economic hardship for many families, the need for assistance is greater than ever. The Kettle Campaign is an opportunity for individuals, organizations, and businesses to come alongside the Salvation Army and make a real difference in the local community, as funds raised throughout the season go directly back to the local community, to support those in need.

The public is invited to attend the Kick-Off and show their support. Those who cannot attend but still wish to support the Salvation Army Red Kettle Campaign online can make a gift HERE.

The Salvation Army Front Royal Corps supports the counties of Warren, Page, and Rappahannock, as well as the city of Strasburg. For more information, contact Lt. Michael Fadler at 540-635-4020, or go to the Corps Office at 357 Cloud Street.

Regional News

Marriage equality bill heads to Biden’s desk following bipartisan U.S. House vote

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When:
November 13, 2020 @ 11:00 am – 1:00 pm
2020-11-13T11:00:00-05:00
2020-11-13T13:00:00-05:00
Where:
Rural King
465 South St | Front Royal VA 22630
Contact:
Lt. Michael Fadler
540-635-4020

WASHINGTON — The U.S. House overwhelmingly approved a marriage equality bill Thursday that would ensure same-sex and interracial couples continue holding many of the rights they have now, should the U.S. Supreme Court overturn the cases that established those constitutional protections.

The measure now heads to the desk of President Joe Biden, who plans to sign it.

The 258-169-1 vote included the backing of 39 Republicans, though many GOP lawmakers argued during the debate there was no reason to pass the legislation since the justices had not agreed to take up any cases that would end legal marriages for interracial or same-sex couples.

All four of Virginia’s Republican congressmen — Reps. Rob Wittman, Bob Good, Ben Cline, and Morgan Griffith — voted against the legislation, while all six of its Democratic representatives voted in favor of it. (Virginia’s 11th representative, Democrat Donald McEachin, died last month.)

Virginia GOP Rep. Bob Good spoke out against the U.S. House passing the bill, saying the legislation did not comply with his religious views on marriage as a union between one man and one woman.

Good argued the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in the 2015 Obergefell v. Hodges case that legalized same-sex marriage nationwide was incorrect, saying the justices were “overriding the will of the people and their elected representatives.”

“Almost everything that plagues our society is a failure to follow God’s design for marriage, morality, and the family,” said Good in a floor speech. “The perfect, omniscient, immutable God knows what he’s doing.”

Democrats countered the legislation is essential to assure Americans that should the conservative-leaning court take up such a case in the future, as it did with abortion rights, same-sex and interracial marriages will still be recognized federally.

They also said religious liberty protections added in the Senate should assuage concerns about potential impacts on people and organizations.

“I’m standing here today because, in the year 2022, families like mine are once again concerned that an activist out-of-step Supreme Court is going to take those rights away,” Minnesota Democratic Rep. Angie Craig said during a floor debate.

Wisconsin Democratic Rep. Mark Pocan argued that his marriage to his husband, Phil, shouldn’t be any different from any other marriage regarding taxes, visiting a spouse in the hospital, Social Security benefits, or retirement.

Pocan urged his colleagues, including Republicans, to back the bill, saying, “it’s never too late to do the right thing.”

He later added that he was sure “no one here would intend to discriminate against my spouse and me, as I would never against you and yours.”

Repeal of Defense of Marriage Act

The bill approved Thursday by the U.S. House would repeal the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act that had defined marriage as between one man and one woman. The law also allowed states to ignore legal same-sex marriages that were performed in states where the unions were legal.

The current measure would ensure that if the U.S. Supreme Court overturns the cases that legalized same-sex and interracial marriages, the federal government will continue recognizing those unions. It would also require states to recognize legal same-sex or interracial marriages between two people performed out-of-state.

The U.S. House voted 267-157 in July to approve the bill’s original version, with 47 GOP lawmakers supporting the measure.

A bipartisan group of U.S. senators — Tammy Baldwin, a Wisconsin Democrat; Susan Collins, a Maine Republican; Rob Portman, an Ohio Republican; Kyrsten Sinema, an Arizona Democrat; and Thom Tillis, a North Carolina Republican — then began working behind the scenes to add religious liberty protections into the bill and to get the backing of at least 10 Republicans to clear that chamber’s legislative filibuster.

After a few months of negotiations, senators voted 61-36 in late November to send the measure back to the House for final approval.

Following the Senate passage of the bill, Biden said in a written statement that “the United States is on the brink of reaffirming a fundamental truth: love is love, and Americans should have the right to marry the person they love.”

“For millions of Americans, this legislation will safeguard the rights and protections to which LGBTQI+ and interracial couples and their children are entitled,” Biden wrote. “It will also ensure that, for generations to follow, LGBTQI+ youth will grow up knowing that they, too, can lead full, happy lives and build families of their own.”

 

by Jennifer Shutt, Virginia Mercury


Virginia Mercury is part of States Newsroom, a network of news bureaus supported by grants and a coalition of donors as a 501c(3) public charity. Virginia Mercury maintains editorial independence. Contact Editor Sarah Vogelsong for questions: info@virginiamercury.com. Follow Virginia Mercury on Facebook and Twitter.

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Local News

Town Talk: A conversation with Shane Goodwin, Danelle Sperling, Robert Hupman – Reaching Out Now, Christmas Meal at Skyline HS

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When:
November 13, 2020 @ 11:00 am – 1:00 pm
2020-11-13T11:00:00-05:00
2020-11-13T13:00:00-05:00
Where:
Rural King
465 South St | Front Royal VA 22630
Contact:
Lt. Michael Fadler
540-635-4020

In this Town Talk, our publisher Mike McCool speaks with  Shane Goodwin, Danelle Sperling, and Robert Hupman about the Linda Kroll Community Meal Program.

On December 15, 2022, at 4:30 pm, Reaching Out Now and its partners will host a Christmas meal for families with children in our local school system at Skyline High School School.

This event will feature a traditional Christmas menu with turkey, ham, shepherd’s pie, vegetable medley, rolls, and dessert,  all prepared by Chef Devin and the Blue Ridge Technical Center’s Culinary Arts program students.


Town Talk is a series on the Royal Examiner where we will introduce you to local entrepreneurs, businesses, non-profit leaders, and political figures who influence Warren County. Topics will be varied but hopefully interesting. Let us know if you have an idea or topic or want to hear from someone in our community. Send your request to news@RoyalExaminer.com.

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State News

Virginia State Police won’t release job records of ex-trooper who killed 3 in California

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on

When:
November 13, 2020 @ 11:00 am – 1:00 pm
2020-11-13T11:00:00-05:00
2020-11-13T13:00:00-05:00
Where:
Rural King
465 South St | Front Royal VA 22630
Contact:
Lt. Michael Fadler
540-635-4020

Virginia State Police acknowledged “human error” caused them to miss a violent incident in the past of a former state trooper who killed three people in California last month, but the agency is refusing to release 247 pages of personnel records that could shed more light on his time as a state employee.

The Virginia Mercury filed a public records request for all documents related to State Police administrative investigations and background checks of former trooper Austin Lee Edwards, whom authorities say “catfished” a 15-year-old California girl online before traveling there and killing three members of her family.

Edwards’ 15-month stint as a State Police trooper ended Oct. 28, when he left his state job to join the Washington County Sheriff’s Office in Southwest Virginia. According to California authorities, Edwards killed the girl’s mother and grandparents on Nov. 25 and tried to kidnap her before dying by suicide during a shootout with police.

State Police spokeswoman Corinne Geller said the agency was choosing to “exercise its statutory discretion” to keep the employment records confidential. Asked if the agency could explain that choice given the significant public interest in the murders Edwards committed and his background as a police officer in Virginia, Geller said the state’s transparency laws don’t require the agency to comment further.

Edwards’ behavior as a State Police officer never triggered any internal investigations, according to the agency, and there was no potentially troubling information in his background that the agency would have been legally required to pass along to his new law enforcement employer in Washington County. Under Virginia law, the State Police would have had to tell the county sheriff’s office about any alleged criminal activity, excessive force, or other misconduct in Edwards’ law enforcement background.

However, State Police say their own hiring process was flawed because they were unaware that a court-ordered Edwards to be hospitalized for a mental health episode in 2016, years before he became a state trooper, in which he threatened to kill himself and his father, according to the Los Angeles Times.

In a news release Wednesday night, State Police said, “human error resulted in an incomplete database query during Edwards’ hiring process.” The hiring process, the agency said, includes a background check “that requires passage of written, psychological and physical testing, as well as a pre-employment polygraph.”

“Although we believe this to be an isolated incident, steps are currently underway to ensure the error is not repeated going forward,” the agency said. “The department is also proactively auditing existing personnel records and practices.”

The agency said it is conducting a “forensic review” of Edwards’ state-issued laptop and cell phone.

Geller made clear the agency would not be releasing any personnel information related to Edwards, including his monthly job performance evaluations.

“The materials you are seeking constitute personnel information of this agency concerning identifiable individuals,” Geller said, pointing to a longstanding exemption in the Virginia Freedom of Information Act that allows state and local governments to shield a wide array of records dealing with the hiring, firing, and performance of public employees.

However, the Supreme Court of Virginia recently narrowed the exemption in an October opinion that concluded government agencies don’t have a blanket right to shield all personnel records. Instead, the court found, the exemption only applies to truly private information, defined as anything that, if disclosed, would appear to be an “unwarranted invasion of personal privacy” to a reasonable person.

Federal FOIA guidance says that “after death, a person no longer possesses privacy rights.” But that interpretation doesn’t bind state agencies or state courts.

 

by Graham Moomaw, Virginia Mercury


Virginia Mercury is part of States Newsroom, a network of news bureaus supported by grants and a coalition of donors as a 501c(3) public charity. Virginia Mercury maintains editorial independence. Contact Editor Sarah Vogelsong for questions: info@virginiamercury.com. Follow Virginia Mercury on Facebook and Twitter.

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Livestream - WCHS

Warren County High School vs Park View High School – Boys Varsity Basketball, December 8th

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When:
November 13, 2020 @ 11:00 am – 1:00 pm
2020-11-13T11:00:00-05:00
2020-11-13T13:00:00-05:00
Where:
Rural King
465 South St | Front Royal VA 22630
Contact:
Lt. Michael Fadler
540-635-4020

Joins us on Thursday, December 8, 2022, when the Warren County High School Boy’s Varsity Basketball team takes on Park View High School. The game starts at 6:00 pm.

Catch all the action right here on the Royal Examiner.

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State News

Loudoun superintendent fired after grand jury report and more Va. headlines

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on

When:
November 13, 2020 @ 11:00 am – 1:00 pm
2020-11-13T11:00:00-05:00
2020-11-13T13:00:00-05:00
Where:
Rural King
465 South St | Front Royal VA 22630
Contact:
Lt. Michael Fadler
540-635-4020

The State Capitol. (Ned Oliver/ Virginia Mercury)

 

• The NCAA is granting another year of eligibility to all University of Virginia football players who were playing in their final year this season. The move comes in response to the mass shooting last month that left three players dead and led the team to cancel several games.—Daily Progress

• The Loudoun County School Board voted to fire Superintendent Scott Ziegler following the release of a grand jury report that concluded he lied about a sexual assault that took place in a high-school bathroom.—WTOP

• The average gas price in Virginia has fallen back to $3.21 per gallon, the same price as a year ago, after hitting a high of $4.86 in mid-June.—Richmond Times-Dispatch

• Virginia will get $16 million as part of a $434 million national settlement with Juul Labs, the e-cigarette maker accused of marketing its products to minors.—WRIC

• “Dozens of members of Congress and other Virginia dignitaries paid their respects to Rep. A. Donald McEachin at his funeral in Richmond on Wednesday morning, including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.”—Washington Post

 

by Staff Report, Virginia Mercury


Virginia Mercury is part of States Newsroom, a network of news bureaus supported by grants and a coalition of donors as a 501c(3) public charity. Virginia Mercury maintains editorial independence. Contact Editor Sarah Vogelsong for questions: info@virginiamercury.com. Follow Virginia Mercury on Facebook and Twitter.

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Regional News

Attempt to help states ease banking for marijuana businesses stumbles in Congress

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When:
November 13, 2020 @ 11:00 am – 1:00 pm
2020-11-13T11:00:00-05:00
2020-11-13T13:00:00-05:00
Where:
Rural King
465 South St | Front Royal VA 22630
Contact:
Lt. Michael Fadler
540-635-4020

The annual Defense Department policy bill members of Congress released late Tuesday did not include measures to loosen federal marijuana restrictions, to the disappointment of advocates.

That leaves few avenues to pass marijuana measures seen as boons to states where the drug is legal before Congress adjourns for the year.

As one of the last must-pass bills Congress would consider while Democrats still control both chambers, the defense bill was a potential target for advocates of legalizing marijuana interested in attaching two bills.

One would clarify that banks lending to legitimate marijuana businesses in states with legal markets do not violate federal law. The other would provide federal funding to help states expunge criminal records of people convicted of offenses before the substance was legalized in the state.

Though most defense bills deal with authorizing Pentagon programs, they are often filled with additional policy measures.

But when 4,400 pages of text for the 2022 bill were released Tuesday night, neither marijuana proposal was included.

With less than two weeks left in the session, the path to passage is now either as part of a year-end spending bill — another popular target for legislation — or on its own, Morgan Fox, the political director for the cannabis advocacy group National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, said in an interview.

“I’m glad that we still have other options,” Fox said Wednesday. “It’s pretty disappointing.”

A vote on a standalone marijuana bill is unlikely, with the Senate in session only a handful of days this year and a list of priorities remaining, including the year-long government funding bill and a measure to clarify election laws.

Split with states

Though the federal government places marijuana on its list of most restricted controlled substances, 21 states have legalized recreational use.

That policy split leads to unique challenges for state-legal businesses in areas like banking, where some financial institutions refuse to work with the marijuana industry out of fear they will violate federal law.

The banking bill, introduced by U.S. Rep. Ed Perlmutter, a Colorado Democrat retiring at the end of the year, would clarify that federal regulators could not penalize banks for doing business with marijuana retailers operating in compliance with their states’ laws.

The banking bill has passed the House seven times since its first introduction in 2019, but the Senate has never passed it.

The streak in the House may be in danger as Republicans take over next year. Despite its bipartisan support and a 321-101 vote in favor last year, the legislation could face long odds next year if Ohio Republican Jim Jordan becomes chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, as expected. Jordan has consistently voted against marijuana legalization efforts, including against the banking bill.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, an advocate of liberalizing marijuana laws, told reporters before the defense bill’s text was released Tuesday he was working on getting the banking measure passed.

“It’s a priority for me,” Schumer said. “I’d like to get it done. We’ll try and discuss the best way to get it done.”

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, a Republican from Kentucky, opposed including marijuana provisions in the defense bill, listing the banking bill as an item that did not belong there.

“We’re talking about a grab bag of miscellaneous pet priorities — making our financial system more sympathetic to illegal drugs,” he said. “If Democrats wanted these controversial items so badly, they had two years to move them across the floor.”

Colorado support

The bill is a priority for states where legal marijuana businesses constitute major industries, such as Colorado, where marijuana sales started in 2014 and reached $2.2 billion last year.

In a written statement, Conor Cahill, a Colorado Gov. Jared Polis spokesman, commended Perlmutter for his work and predicted passage this year.

“Governor Polis has long advocated for the passage of the SAFE Banking Act, and has repeatedly called upon Congress to pass this important legislation to protect cannabis-related businesses, support minority, women, and veteran-owned small businesses owners, create jobs, and strengthen public safety in Colorado communities and in the states,” Cahill wrote in a Tuesday email. “We hope and expect to see the final passage of his decade-long effort by the end of the lame-duck session.”

Schumer resisted bringing the banking bill to the floor this Congress as he sought to pass instead a broader federal legalization measure he introduced with fellow Senate Democrats Cory Booker of New Jersey and Ron Wyden of Oregon.

“Although the SAFE Banking Act is a common-sense policy that I support, it has to be coupled with strong restorative justice provisions that seek to right the many injustices experienced by Black and brown communities as part of our nation’s failed war on drugs,” Booker said in a statement last year.

A spokesman for Booker did not return a message seeking comment Wednesday.

Fox said Schumer’s advocacy would be crucial to the passage, though the deference to a more comprehensive bill may have hurt its chances this year.

“Having the support of Senate leadership, I think, was really important,” Fox said. “I wish they’d gotten the ball rolling on this way earlier in the session instead of waiting until after the (Schumer-Booker-Wyden bill) was introduced.”

 

by Jacob Fischler, Virginia Mercury


Virginia Mercury is part of States Newsroom, a network of news bureaus supported by grants and a coalition of donors as a 501c(3) public charity. Virginia Mercury maintains editorial independence. Contact Editor Sarah Vogelsong for questions: info@virginiamercury.com. Follow Virginia Mercury on Facebook and Twitter.

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Upcoming Events

Dec
10
Sat
10:00 am 10th Virginia Infantry Encampment @ Sky Meadows State Park
10th Virginia Infantry Encampment @ Sky Meadows State Park
Dec 10 @ 10:00 am – 4:00 pm
10th Virginia Infantry Encampment @ Sky Meadows State Park
Historic Area Journey back in time and immerse yourself in the sights, sounds and smells of a Civil War Encampment during the holidays. Interact with the 10th VA Infantry, also known as the Valley Guards,[...]
Dec
14
Wed
6:30 pm Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Dec 14 @ 6:30 pm – 9:30 pm
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Bingo to support the American Cancer Society mission, organized by Relay For Life of Front Royal. Every Wednesday evening Early Bird Bingo at 6:30 p.m. Regular Bingo from 7-9:30 p.m. Food and refreshments available More[...]
Dec
17
Sat
1:00 pm The Nutcracker 2022 @ Skyline High School
The Nutcracker 2022 @ Skyline High School
Dec 17 @ 1:00 pm – 5:00 pm
The Nutcracker 2022 @ Skyline High School
Italia Performing Arts is pleased to announce its own student production of the seasonal ballet The Nutcracker, to be presented in Front Royal, VA, on Saturday December 17th 2022. Tickets: $35 and $25 Under 16:[...]
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21
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6:30 pm Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Dec 21 @ 6:30 pm – 9:30 pm
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Bingo to support the American Cancer Society mission, organized by Relay For Life of Front Royal. Every Wednesday evening Early Bird Bingo at 6:30 p.m. Regular Bingo from 7-9:30 p.m. Food and refreshments available More[...]
Dec
28
Wed
6:30 pm Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Dec 28 @ 6:30 pm – 9:30 pm
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Bingo to support the American Cancer Society mission, organized by Relay For Life of Front Royal. Every Wednesday evening Early Bird Bingo at 6:30 p.m. Regular Bingo from 7-9:30 p.m. Food and refreshments available More[...]
Jan
1
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5:30 am First Day Hikes at Sky Meadows @ Sky Meadows State Park
First Day Hikes at Sky Meadows @ Sky Meadows State Park
Jan 1 @ 5:30 am – 3:00 pm
First Day Hikes at Sky Meadows @ Sky Meadows State Park
Historic Area. While the American tradition of celebrating the New Year occurs at midnight on New Year’s Eve, other cultures celebrate by enjoying the sunrise on New Year’s Day. As part of the continuing American[...]
Jan
4
Wed
6:30 pm Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Jan 4 @ 6:30 pm – 9:30 pm
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Bingo to support the American Cancer Society mission, organized by Relay For Life of Front Royal. Every Wednesday evening Early Bird Bingo at 6:30 p.m. Regular Bingo from 7-9:30 p.m. Food and refreshments available More[...]