Michael Thompson on Health Care, Energy, and Cigarettes

Michael Thompson of the Thomas Jefferson Institue for Public Policy stops by the podcast to talk about the current state of conservative policy and discourse in the commonwealth.

Dr. Klaus Moeltner, Virginia Tech, on the Economics of Electricity

This week, my guest is Dr. Klaus Moeltner of Department of Agriculture and Applied Economics at Virginia Tech University. He has been researching the effects of power outages and consumers’ willingness to pay for grid improvements and uninterrupted electricity supply.

Interesting and important research, given the context of recent wintry weather in the Mid-Atlantic, a spike in natural gas prices due to the cold snap, and the debate over rate caps and reinvestment with Appalachian Power and Dominion Energy.

Over the course of our conversation, we discuss the impacts of weather and climate change on electrical distribution, differences in preference due to regional or geographic location (urban, suburban, rural), preferences due to age, gender, education, and a myriad of other factors. We also talk about the importance of electricity in the delivery of critical infrastructure services, like banking, communication, medical, transportation, sanitation, wastewater management, and food distribution services.

Key point: “From a public policy perspective, our findings are perhaps best interpreted as strong evidence that a widespread loss of power harms residential customers through more than just the interruption of front-door service. Protecting vital elements of the public infrastructure may be just as important, if not more so, than assuring adequate power flow to the neighborhood grid.”

Links of note:
Shifting temperatures to alter household electricity expenses, researchers find
Effect of global warming on willingness to pay for uninterrupted electricity supply in European nations
Valuing electricity-dependent infrastructure: An essential-input approach
Governor Northam Statement on Rate Freeze Repeal Legislation
HB 1558 Electric utility regulation; grid modernization, energy efficiency programs.
Cold snap renews need for pipeline
Dr. Moeltner’s Bio

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Blacks Denied Conventional Mortgages More Often

This report should make blacks angry. But not the way I fear it might be construed.

Former Virginia Attorney General Jerry Kilgore of Cozen O’Connor

Former Attorney General Jerry Kilgore talks about the law firm Cozen O’Connor and its role here in Virginia. The firm will help businesses navigate Virginia’s political and legislative process.

Congressman Wittman Reacts to the State of the Union Address, New National Security Strategy

Rep. Rob Wittman (R-VA), who serves on the House Natural Resources Committee and the House Armed Services Committee, where he is the Chairman of the Seapower and Projection Forces Subcommittee, joined the podcast to talk about the president’s State of the Union address, continuing resolutions, threats to our national security, Navy readiness and shipbuilding, offshore energy, and Virginia tribes.

Julian Walker, Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association, on Medicaid Expansion

This week’s guest is Julian Walker of the Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association (VHHA) to talk about Medicaid Expansion in Virginia.

Americans For Prosperity-Virginia Talks 2018 Legislative Agenda

J.C. Hernandez, state director of Americans for Prosperity – Virginia (AFP-VA), and Lauren Toomey, deputy director, joined J.R. on the podcast to talk about AFP, their legislative priorities, and grassroots engagement for 2018.

David Poole, Executive Director, Virginia Public Access Project

J.R. interviews David Poole, executive director of the Virginia Public Access Project (VPAP). David describes VPAP and how they have grown into the central source for political data in Virginia.

Santa Claus

Joining J.R. for a very special holiday episode to close out 2017 is our good friend, Santa Claus! Santa gives us straight answers about what’s going on at the North Pole with the elves, reindeer, how he prepares for the big day, working with North American Air Defense, and more!

Dr. Alice Louise Kassens on the Health of the Virginia Economy

Dr. Alice Lousie Kassens, John S. Shannon Professor of Economics at Roanoke College and Senior Analyst for the Institute for Policy and Opinion Research gives an overview of the Virginia economy as we close out 2017.