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Editorial: Effort to kill a farmland preservation program that helps all of Virginia Beach must be stopped

That ending the agricultural reserve program was proposed at all — then argued with questionable logic — shows a troubling division between Virginia Beach government and the rural communities it takes for granted. THE INDEPENDENT NEWS PUNGO — Two years ago, following his appointment as… Continue Reading

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Agriculture: I am a 12th generation farmer who knows killing the ARP threatens our industry

BY SCOTT MORRIS PLEASANT RIDGE — I am a 12th-generation farmer of land in the Pungo area, and I would like for my son to have the option of being the 13th.   We sat at the Virginia Beach Excellence in Agriculture… Continue Reading

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Letter: Ending farmland preservation in rural communities a dishonest idea

Dear Editor: Virginia Beach City Manager Dave Hansen believes that the agricultural reserve program, or ARP, is no longer needed. That statement in itself should set off flares.  Remember that City Councilmember Barbara Henley, who represents the Princess Anne District,… Continue Reading

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Column: Differing General Assembly approaches to Medicaid expansion

BY J.R. HOEFT CHESAPEAKE — In Virginia, we ask 141 people of tremendous skill – and tremendous ego – to come to an agreement after a period of only sixty days on thousands of bills, how to collect and spend tens… Continue Reading

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Farmer John: Benefits of a beloved fowl mean it might just be time for a chicken in every Virginia Beach yard

BY J.D. WILSON VIRGINIA BEACH — Why did the chicken cross the road?  To rule the world, of course.  There are some 20 billion chickens in the world, plus or minus a few. This dwarfs any other bird species. Next in… Continue Reading

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Column: In the wake of Florida shooting, a promise to act in the name of preventing gun violence

Ed. – The following is adapted from remarks delivered last month at Town Center during a vigil organized by local members of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America following the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School… Continue Reading

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Hoeft: We have much in common, Virginia Beach — and much to discuss

BY J.R. HOEFT CHESAPEAKE — We live in an era that seems to reward the sound bite and the tweet. The more staccato and abrasive you are with your language, the more you are rewarded with attention. I am not that… Continue Reading

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Farmer John: I learned to love the land, what it gives us — and sustaining it

BY J.D. WILSON SIGMA — I can still remember the smells of my first garden back home in small town Indiana. I walked into the garden, saltshaker in hand. I was heading to the big boy tomatoes. My bare feet remember the… Continue Reading

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Column: Celebrating the season of engagements while avoiding stress

BY KENDRA LOUKA PUNGO — Valentine’s Day surely rerouted the planned paths for some people. Only two years ago, the U.S Census Bureau reported $2.6 billion in jewelry merchandise sales in February.  Such as engagement rings.  Valentine’s Day is a marked… Continue Reading

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Column: A football upbringing leads to enduring gridiron appreciation

BY LISA VERSPRILLE BURKETT VIRGINIA BEACH — I am in front of the television for hours on Saturdays during the fall. I’m a college football fanatic. I can watch any team play – usually not rooting for any particular team but hoping… Continue Reading