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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) Public workers in Virginia will be getting an extra day off Christmas week, thanks to Gov. Bob McDonnell. McDonnell has sent out an e-mail out informing the workers that they'll be getting Dec. 23 off what he calls a small token of thanks for their hard work throughout the year.

ROANOKE, Va. (AP) State police have issued an Amber Alert for a 12-year-old Roanoke County girl named Brittany Mae Smith. Authorities say they believe the child was taken against her will after her mother was found dead in their home in Salem.

BALTIMORE (AP) Environmentalists are urging authorities to put the Chesapeake Bay on a tighter "pollution diet" against the chemical called phosphorous. Phosphorous is found in manure and sewage sludge but there worries too much of is harming the Chesapeake.

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) A new authority to promote the development of wind farms off Virginia's coast has met for the first time, in suburban Richmond. The offshore wind authority's eight members met today with power company officials and those who would like to build wind farms off the coast.

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) Gov. McDonnell is getting into the holiday spirit by giving public employees a gift an extra day off Christmas week. McDonnell informed Virginia's public employees by e-mail yesterday they will get Dec. 23 off.

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (AP) Military and civilian officials will honor the memory of the Pearl Harbor attack at a ceremony in Virginia Beach. The 69th anniversary of the attack is being marked at the Pearl Harbor Monument at the Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek-Fort Story.

BLACKSBURG, Va. (AP) Engineering documents suggest Blackburg High school's gymnasium had growing cracks and foundation settlement issues years before the gym's roof collapsed. Engineers recommended work be done on the problems as early as 1999, but they went unchecked from 2004 until the roof collapsed in February. The gym was demolished in May.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

NPR

Tabasco And Beer-Flavored: Not Your Easter Bunny's Jelly Beans

On the eve of Easter and National Jelly Bean Day, let us probe the mysterious origins and unexpected ascendency of the humble candy. And to celebrate, we've sampled Jelly Belly's newest flavors.
NPR

Tabasco And Beer-Flavored: Not Your Easter Bunny's Jelly Beans

On the eve of Easter and National Jelly Bean Day, let us probe the mysterious origins and unexpected ascendency of the humble candy. And to celebrate, we've sampled Jelly Belly's newest flavors.
NPR

President Obama's Favorite County — At Least When it Comes to Giving Speeches

President Obama has visited Prince George's County, MD, four times this year. It is the most affluent county with an African American majority, and also happens to be very close to the White House.
NPR

Ohio's Law Against Political Lying Heads To Supreme Court

Can a state law prevent political campaigns from doling out misinformation? Guest host Celeste Headlee learns more from The Plain Dealer's Sabrina Eaton.

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