Virginia Gov. Northam addresses Bristol businesses as Tennessee begins phased reopening


RICHMOND, Va. (WJHL)- As Tennessee begins a phased reopening of restaurants and retail across the Volunteer State, Virginia Governor Ralph Northam addressed a question Monday about reopening certain parts of the Commonwealth sooner than others.

Governor Northam answered the question by saying, “A great example is in Bristol and I suspect most of you are familiar with Bristol but on one side of the line is Tennessee and on our side is Virginia. So again to try to be consistent, is it really fair for Tennessee’s businesses to be open and Virginia’s not to be? and so this is one of the things we’ll be discussing this afternoon with our businesses. How can we do this? Is this being able to open certain regions of Virginia possible? I’m open-minded to all of that and I would say stay tuned,” Governor Northam said.

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Virginia State Senator Todd Pillion released a statement Monday afternoon, in response to Governor Northam.

Pillion was part of the group which asked the governor on Friday to consider reopening Southwest Virginia since Tennessee was doing so.

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“This is exactly what we meant when our delegation sent the letter to the Governor on Friday,” said Senator Pillion. “It’s encouraging to hear that he is now taking this into consideration and acknowledging the unique circumstances we’re in with our region surrounded by four other states. We all have an interest in coming up with a measured approach that keeps Virginians safe while getting back to business.” 

You can watch the entire news briefing on our WJHL Facebook page below.

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