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Local News

  • Should landfill money fund unrelated projects?

    HILLSVILLE — Only one member of the regional Solid Waste Authority board voted against including funds for economic development measures in the landfill’s 2014 budget.
    Josh Hendrick, Carroll supervisor and representative on the authority, questioned the practice of the SWA financially supporting efforts of the Wired Road, the regional broadband project.
    The issue came up Friday during the authority’s regular meeting. This is the second time in two months that discussion of the Wired Road funding came up.

  • Grayson facing $1.4M shortfall

    INDEPENDENCE – Grayson County begins its months-long process of balancing its budget with an initial shortfall of $1.4 million.
    County Administrator Jonathan Sweet presented the supervisors with the first budget snapshot during a work session on April 24.
    Sweet said projected revenues for fiscal year 2014 are $16.86 million, a .03 percent increase ($53,277) over last year’s adjusted revenues.

  • Investors want to reopen Grayson Water plant

    INDEPENDENCE – A company wants to get the old Grayson Mountain Water plant in Grayson County up and running again, and has asked the county to rezone an adjacent property for a private campground for the investors.
    Grayson County supervisors approved three zoning changes earlier this month that could lead to further economic development. Each zoning change required a public hearing,

  • AAA finds motorists' breaking point on gas prices

    Half of U.S. adults consider gas prices to be “too high” when it reaches $3.44 per gallon, indicating a potential breaking point on gas prices, according to a new consumer price index developed by AAA.
    Roughly two-thirds of Americans (62 percent) offset high gas prices by changing their driving habits or lifestyle.
    “It was not long ago that motorists were shocked to pay more than $3 per gallon for gasoline, but now that is standard at stations nationwide,” said Martha Mitchell Meade of the American Automobile Association Mid-Atlantic.

  • Carroll holds hearing on tax rates

    By SHAINA STOCKTON, Staff
    HILLSVILLE  — Carroll’s proposed FY 2013-14 budget includes an increase to 68 cents per $100 valuation for the real estate tax rate, to make it “revenue neutral” after the county experienced the first drop in property values in three decades, according to a budget presentation at a meeting held earlier this month.
    Because of this drop in values, the county won’t take in any more revenue from the reassessment, in spite of the higher rate.

  • Hillsville budget to balance with tax hikes

    HILLSVILLE — Changes have come to the way that Hillsville Town Council members plan their budget — they have sworn off dipping into savings to balance the fiscal year 2014 proposal.
    Adjustments to the real estate, meals and lodging taxes are also a part of making the proposal work, according to Town Manager Travis Jackson’s budget message.
    Town officials needed to make up a shortfall of $519,501 in the budget, including the general fund and the water and sewer services.

  • Givens St. residents live with frequent floods

    By SHAINA STOCKTON, Staff
    As the harsh winter weather gives way to the rains of spring, relief is being felt by most of the residents of the Twin Counties... but not everyone.
    Families who live in the low-lying “Bottom” area of Galax — Givens Street and its side streets  — still suffer every time the rain clouds roll in because the water doesn’t just wash away.

  • Natural gas rates set in Carroll

    HILLSVILLE — In a surge of activity on natural gas, Carroll officials continued to build up to the creation of a local utility service at their April 8 meeting.
    With the expected completion of a connection to the Patriot pipeline this month, county officials held a public hearing and get natural gas rates, as well as scheduled a separate business and safety meeting for April 25.

  • Feeding America seeks support from Grayson

    INDEPENDENCE – More than 240,000 pounds of food have been distributed in Grayson County in the last year through the Feeding America program and coordinators are looking for county supervisors to continue their support.
    Jessica Brown serves as the mobile food pantry coordinator and spoke to the board during their regular meeting earlier this month.
    Brown said the Mobile Food Pantry is a partnership between Feeding America Southwest Virginia and community partners in rural Southwest Virginia where communities have limited access to food pantries.

  • Federal budget cuts hit Blue Ridge Parkway

    When the Blue Ridge Parkway announced its seasonal openings for 2013, the big news was about the places that will stay closed because of the federal government’s automatic spending cuts.
    Some campgrounds, picnic areas and visitor centers will remain closed this season, because of an across-the-board 5 percent cut to the National Park Service mandated by the federal sequester.