RICHMOND, Va. (AP) – Off-track betting may soon be coming to the Richmond area. The Richmond Times Dispatch reports that the Virginia Equine Alliance recently won approval from the Virginia Racing Commission to open a satellite wagering facility in Henrico County. The alliance says it also hopes to open an off-track betting site as part of a planned brewpub in downtown Richmond. The facilities would be the first to operate in the state since Colonial Downs closed its track and off-site betting sites in 2014. Debbie Easter is president of the equine alliance, which will operate the new sites. She says they could bring in $5 million or more per year in gross revenue. The alliance hopes that will revive the industry in the state.
Efforts to create a Virginia Lewis and Clark historic trail in Virginia are changing direction — away from the National Park Service toward a state-supported version. The goal is create a marked route that remembers the Virginia travels of Meriwether Lewis and William Clark before and after their historic expedition to the Pacific. WFIR’s Evan Jones has the story.
HUNTINGTON, W.Va. (AP) – U.S. communities hard hit by coal industry layoffs in eight Appalachian states and Texas are being promised more than 3,000 jobs in several industries through a multimillion-dollar federal grant. Officials for the Appalachian Regional Commission and other agencies announced the 29 projects totaling nearly $39 million at a news conference in Huntington, West Virginia, on Wednesday. The funding comes from a job-creation organization involving multiple federal agencies, including the U.S. Commerce and Labor departments and the regional commission. Officials say the investments are expected to create or retain more than 3,400 jobs in agriculture, manufacturing and other industries. Appalachian states involved in the projects are Alabama, Kentucky, Mississippi, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia. The commission says about 23,000 Appalachian coal jobs were lost between 2011 and 2015.