Local News

  • Armstrong: end state's dependence on foreign oil

    RICHMOND — Virginia should eliminate use of foreign oil in state government-owned vehicles, says House Bill 2113.
    In another sign the search for alternative fuels continues to gain momentum, Del. Ward Armstrong (D-Henry County) introduced two bills with different paths to wean both the state's fleet and private trucks off imported oil.
    The second bill, numbered 2109, would direct the state to provide a tax credit of up to $3,500 for trucks to be converted to using natural gas as fuel.

  • Gun laws targeted from both sides

    RICHMOND — It’s one of the most heated debates of our time: Would fewer guns equal fewer killings, or is it just the opposite?
    In the shadow of the recent shootings in Arizona, the argument is as contentious as ever. Both sides came to the capital last week to air their starkly different views to lawmakers.

  • Legislators: 'Internet cafes' are same as gambling

    RICHMOND — If Internet sweepstakes cafes use a gambling device for games, then that business probably promotes gambling, according to a bill before the General Assembly.
    Three legislators have submitted identical bills to answer the sudden influx of Internet sweepstakes cafes in Virginia — Carroll County alone now has five of the businesses.

    Legislators from Harrisonburg, Front Royal and Newport News have weighed in with clarifications on what entails illegal gambling in the state.

  • Water project construction bid awarded

    HILLSVILLE — The Sylvatus-Mitchell's Crossroads water extension will begin to tap overflow monies from other projects soon, after the Carroll Public Service Authority awarded a construction bid Jan. 13.
    Carroll officials and Rural Development's Travis Jackson gathered in Sylvatus in spring 2010 to share the news that cost savings in other projects would cover the costs of extending public water service to the communities of Sylvatus and Mitchell's Crossroads.
    About eight months later, the public service authority held a bid opening Jan. 6.

  • Grant would provide emergency animal shelter

    The City of Galax is seeking a grant that would allow for the purchase of a cargo trailer and equipment to shelter and transport pets during natural and man-made disasters.
    Brenda Marrah, the city's grant administer, identified the $31,000 grant from Homeland Security that would pay for a 7-by-16-foot cargo trailer with a small generator, 70 kennels and supplies.
    The grant, which requires no local matching funds, would require two more localities to partner with Galax. The city will act as the lead partner with Carroll and Grayson counties participating.

  • 3-way races emerge from primary filings

    HILLSVILLE — Two three-way races for constitutional offices and a contested county supervisors' race highlight the Carroll County Republican Primary.
    Three candidates — law enforcement officers all — had already indicated their intention to seek the party nomination for sheriff through the upcoming preferential primary in May.

  • House fire's cause still unknown


  • Extension changes explained

    BLACKSBURG — Carroll County residents have expressed worries about the loss of access and services should Virginia Tech's plan to restructure the Cooperative Extension Service proceed, but Alan Grant, dean of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, says the plan faces budget realities with the goal of improving customer service.
    While the Extension restructuring plan would go to a more regional network of offices, lots of local offices are already short staffed, Grant noted in a phone interview with The Gazette.

  • Family loses home, belongings in fire

    INDEPENDENCE — A Grayson County couple and their four children lost their home, a family pet, clothes and possessions in a Tuesday night fire.
    Independence Volunteer Fire Department responded at 9:55 p.m. to a fire at the home of Aaron and Samantha Davis on Wilson Highway.
    Nearly 20 firefighters were on the scene until around 3 a.m. Wednesday, an IVFD spokesman said.
    Tankers from Piney Creek, N.C., Fire Department and Rugby Volunteer Fire Department also responded. Elk Creek Volunteer Fire Department was on standby.

  • Authority to wait on fluoride decision

    INDEPENDENCE — The Virginia/Carolina Water Authority agreed last week not to take any action concerning fluoride until the new recommended levels could be decided.
    A handout from Jerry Brooks of the People for a Cleaner Environment stated that the nation’s top health official, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, had announced plans to lower the agency’s maximum recommended fluoride level from 1.2 milligrams per liter of water to 0.7.