Local News

  • Three towns in Grayson will hold elections

    Independence, Fries and Troutdale will hold town council elections on May 6, from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m.
    Polling locations are the Independence Fire Department, Fries School and the Troutdale Fire Hall. Voters are required to be a citizen of the town they are voting in, and must present a valid ID. Absentee voting can still be done through May 3 at the Grayson County Registrar’s Office.
    “We encourage everyone to get out and express their right to vote,” said Registrar Cody Wingate, who also noted it was possible for write-in candidates to win.

  • Webb to seek 20th District nomination

    Effective today, Wednesday, Bill Webb will retire as manager of the Virginia Employment Commission (VEC) office in Galax, and will seek election for the role of state senator for the 20th district.
    Webb is in the middle of his second term as a member of Galax City Council, and said he doesn’t plan on seeking a third term when it expires in 2016.
    “I expect to win the state senate,” Webb said.

  • Baywood man in contest for wheelchair-accessible van

    BAYWOOD – While several Grayson County residents seek votes for membership on town councils in May, one Grayson County resident will seek votes in a national contest.
    Baywood resident Eric Higgins, diagnosed with Friedreich’s Ataxia when he was 13 and since confined to a wheelchair, is competing for one of three custom wheelchair-accessible vans to be awarded in a National Mobility Awareness Month contest.

  • Hillsville hires new town manager

    HILLSVILLE — A new town manager who already has a close bond with the official she’s replacing will start her work in Hillsville during mid-May.
    After a two-hour closed session Monday, a divided council selected Retta Nichole Jackson as the new town manager on a motion by council member Billy Walls Sr.
    She is the daughter of the current town manager.
    Walls and council member David Young voted to hire Jackson, council member Ed Terry voted no and Greg Yonce abstained.

  • Opinions mixed on new subdivision ordinance

    HILLSVILLE — One Carroll County supervisor had concerns about road standards for a new kind of subdivision and a citizen made several objections at the April 14 board meeting, but all other speakers and county officials addressing proposed changes to the subdivision ordinance supported the new ideas.
    Carroll supervisors dealt with several subdivision ordinance modifications at the March meeting, but put on hold decisions involving the creation of a class C subdivision and flag lots.

  • New bleachers needed, but replacing could be costly

    INDEPENDENCE – Grayson County School Board members will decide whether to put any funds towards new bleachers at the aging football complex during next month’s regular meeting.
    Division Superintendent Kevin Chalfant spoke about the need to make a decision on where the board planned to spend the roughly $206,000 in leftover grant funds from the school division’s recent athletic field and facilities renovations project.

  • Fire burns home in Carroll


  • Med-Fit looking at options for plant's future

    INDEPENDENCE — Med-Fit Systems Inc. is reviewing its options for the fitness equipment company’s future, following layoffs at its Independence plant last week.
    California-based Med-Fit, which makes Nautilus equipment, laid off a total of 94 workers at the local plant — 61 last week and 33 that were initially furloughed in March.
    Workers at some other Med-Fit locations were affected, as well.
    Med-Fit owner Dean Sbragia outlined the plans for the company in a letter to employees that was shared with The Gazette.

  • Christian school could open in Fries


    FRIES — Members of Fries Town Council gathered on April 17 to hear a special presentation from Mountaintop Community Schools, a group that is interested in developing a non-denominational Christian private school in the town with a one-room schoolhouse structure.
    In addition to seeking the town’s support, the group has requested that the school be allowed to use either the old Fries firehouse or the bingo hall as the schoolhouse.

  • VDOT adds 'rural rustic' roads to highway plan

    HILLSVILLE — Adding several rural rustic road improvement projects to the Carroll County six-year plan may be the way to go, as the Virginia Department of Transportation sees a new influx of funding for roads.
    VDOT’s Dan Huff, Hillsville area land use engineer; and Lisa Hughes, regional residency administrator over Carroll, appeared at the Carroll Board of Supervisors’ meeting April 14 to share a draft of the secondary road six-year plan and the 2014-2015 project priority list.