Lawmakers to vote on gas-tax hikes, other Northam proposals

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Virginia lawmakers are set to return to the state Capitol to vote on gas-tax hikes, a proposed ban on holding cellphones while driving and other vetoes and amendments proposed by Gov. Ralph Northam.

The Wednesday session could see the GOP-led General Assembly knock down some of Northam’s more noteworthy proposals while failing to overturn his vetoes.

The Democratic governor has been trying to recover since a blackface scandal almost forced him to resign two months ago. He’s won praise from black lawmakers for focusing his legislative agenda on efforts to address longstanding racial inequities.

But Republicans have signaled opposition to some of Northam’s other proposals, including raising gas taxes to help fund improvements on Interstate 81 in the western part of the state and to limit smartphone usage by drivers.

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