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Richmond Roundup

A look at some Virginia General Assembly highlights with a Reston connection.

A bill co-sponsored by Del. Ken Plum (D-36) that would make fox and coyote penning a misdemeanor was tabled in committee last week, but the Virginia Senate will vote on a similar bill on Thursday.

Plum was a co-sponsor of HB695. He said the issue was brought to his attention by several Reston-based members of The Humane Society.

Fox pens are fenced enclosures where dogs are released in competitions to chase down and torment captive foxes, often killing them. In just three years, nearly 4,000 foxes were subjected to these events, says the Humane Society of the United States. 

 Plum says the Senate version (SB202), sponsored by Sen. David Marsden (D-37), has a good chance of passing. The Senate Agriculture, Conservation and Natural Resources committee votes on it on Thursday.

“Fox pens are the last legal blood sport in Virginia,” said Marsden said in a statement last month. “They represent a fundamental departure from the wildlife policies in the commonwealth, and I look forward to working with my colleagues in the Senate to deal with this serious problem.”

Said Plum: “It is clear that as Virginians learn about the practice of fox penning, most decide, as I have, that it is a repulsive practice that should be outlawed,” said Del. Plum.   

Plum added while fox penning isn't a huge problem in his Northern Virginia district, he wants to see penalties statewide.

"This reflects the values of the state, no matter where you live," said Plum. "I talk to people who are sportsmen, hunters here in Northern Virginia. They find fox penning disgusting."

Talking parental notification - a group of Fairfax County education advocates went to Richmond on Monday to testify in support of House Bill 1080 . The bill, sponsored by Tim Hugo (R-40), and requires the school principal to take certain procedures, including parental notification and the issuance of due process warnings, prior to questioning a student in the case of a serious violation.

Speaking on the issue: Reston lawyer John Farrell; Elizabeth Schultz, new FCPS School Board member from the Springfield District; and South Lakes High School parent Caroline Hemenway, director of Fairfax Zero Tolerance Reform.

 The bill passed subcommittee with a 5-1 vote and now goes to the full House Education Committee for a vote.

Chipperson February 09, 2012 at 12:36 PM
Delegate Plum, I suggest that if you disagree with the practice of fox pens, then you need to go after the beef and poultry industry as their practices are just as inhumane in this state. Why stop with foxes, are chickens and cows not important to you or do you just love consuming them so much that you won't interfere.
Rod's Sharpening Service February 11, 2012 at 02:32 PM
I think Ken has a very unrealistic view of the world and real Virginians
Rod's Sharpening Service February 11, 2012 at 02:40 PM
I wanted to comment in reply to the person who criticised my spelling in my efforts to focus on Deligate Plum. I spell poorly as a result probally of dislexia. I and people who have similiar disabilities have suffered a lifetime from this disability. I would spell better if I did not have dislexia. I think it is a poor point to try and minimize my arguement just because of mispellings. There are actually many famous people who similarily spell poorly as a result of this dixlexia: Here are the names of some of the many talented and accomplished individuals who are dyslexic, or had traits associated with dyslexia or related learning styles: Actors and entertainers Harry AndersonOrlando BloomHarry BelafonteCharley BoormanTom CruiseDanny GloverWhoopi GoldbergSusan HampshireJay LenoChristopher LowellKeanu Reeves.Kiera KnightleyOliver Reed.Billy Bob Thornton.Tom SmothersVince
Rod's Sharpening Service February 11, 2012 at 02:42 PM
VaughnHenry WinklerLoretta YoungArtists et alLeonardo da Vinci.Ansel Adams, Photographer.David Bailey, Photographer.Chuck Close.Ignacio Gomez, Muralist.Tommy Hilfiger, Clothing Designer.Ian Marley, Contemporary Artist, South Africa.Pablo Picasso.Robert Rauschenberg.Auguste Rodin.Bennett StrahanRobert TothJørn Utzon (architect, designed Sydney Opera house) Andy Warhol.Willard Wigan, micro sculptor.Inventors & Scientists: Ann Bancroft, Arctic Explorer.Alexander Graham Bell.John Britten, Inventor.Pierre Curie, Physicist (1903 Nobel Prize).Thomas Edison.Albert Einstein.Michael Faraday.Carol Greider, Molecular Biologist, awarded 2009 Nobel Prize in Medicine.Jack Horner, Paleontologist.Dr. Peter Lovatt, psychologist and dancer.Dr. James Lovelock.Paul MacCready "Engineer of the Century."Archer Martin, Chemist (1952 Nobel Laureate)Matthew H. Schneps, AstrophysicistJohn R. Skoyles, Brain ResMilitary Heroes: Thomas Jonathan "Stonewall" Jackson.George Patton. Musicians & Vocalists: Cher.Brad Little.John Lennon.Nigel Kennedy, Violinist.Bob Weir, Grateful Dead Guitarist.Writers & Journalists: Scott Adams, Cartoonist (Dilbert)Hans Christian AndersenAviJeanne Betancourt, (Author of "My Name is Brain Brian").Stephen Cannell, television writer & novelist.John Corrigan, novelist.Larry Chambers.Agatha Christie.John Edmund Delezen, author of Eye of the Tiger and Red Plateau.Andrew Dornenburg, award-winning author and chef.
Rod's Sharpening Service February 11, 2012 at 02:43 PM
.Fannie Flagg (Author of "Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe").F. Scott Fitzgerald.Gustave Flaubert.Terry Goodkind fantasy writer, author of The Sword of Truth series.Byron Pitts, CBS News Correspondent.Patricia Polacco, Children's Author and Illustrator.Eileen Simpson (Author of "Reversals").Natasha Solomons, contemporary novelist.Philip Schultz, winner of 2008 Pulitzer Prize for poetry.Elizabeth Daniels Squire(author of mystery novels).Bernie Taylor, author of Biological Time.Victor Villaseñor, author of bestselling novel, Rain of GoldWilliam Butler Yeats, poet.Political Leaders: Winston Churchill.King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden.Michael Heseltine.Andrew Jackson.Thomas Jefferson.John F. Kennedy.Gavin Newsom, Mayor of San Francisco.Nelson Rockefeller.Paul Wellstone, U.S. Senator.Woodrow Wilson.George Washington

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