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Local News

  • Town manager busy in first month on job

    HILLSVILLE — The message that the new town manager wants to send is that Hillsville remains open for business, as officials make plans to build up commerce and activity.
    Travis Jackson began working as the town manager Feb. 1, and quickly found lots to do.
    Even as budget planning for the 2013-2014 fiscal year has been ramping up, Jackson began working with not only other Hillsville officials, but also Carroll County representatives in order to build on past successes and try new things with the goal of benefiting both town and county citizens.

  • Windmill ban too close to zoning for some

    HILLSVILLE — Some residents of the Sulphur Springs District are of two minds: they don’t want windmills, but they also won’t support zoning to keep them out, according to a discussion at the Carroll supervisors’ February meeting.
    That’s making the way to address the windmill issue complicated, county officials discussed after Chairman David Hutchins shared with fellow supervisors the feedback he has received from citizens.

  • Garbage fee, tax increase unpopular but profitable

    INDEPENDENCE—Grayson County’s financial situation continues to improve, as the county once again saw its ending year fund balance grow over the year before.
    Deanna Cox of Robinson, Farmer, Cox Associates provided the county board of supervisors with the 2012 audit report earlier this month and pointed out that the county is continuing its “financial rehealing” process.

  • AmeriPumps pays back incentive funds

    HILLSVILLE — State incentive funds of $150,000  to create jobs with AmeriPumps in Hillsville has been paid back to the Governor’s Opportunity Fund, according to the company owner and the Virginia Economic Development Partnership.
    In an effort to attract the maker of industrial strength pumps from Chattanooga, Tenn., to Hillsville, the state economic development fund provided $150,000 in 2008.
    The goals involved creating 125 new jobs and investing a total of $4.6 million in the community.

  • Thrift shop, food bank making changes

    By SHAINA STOCKTON, Staff
    The months of hard work put into the Willing Partners thrift store in Galax can be seen in every corner.
    Clothes on racks are color-coded and sorted by type in one area, while books are arranged neatly on a wall of shelves in another. Electronics are stacked in one section, and an impressive selection of furniture lines the back wall.

  • Mabry inspires others to fight multiple sclerosis

    SYLVATUS — Loved ones of Joe Mabry feel certain he would lead the charge to raise money for multiple sclerosis research, if he could.
    Mabry, who died of complications from the congenital heart disease Aug. 11, 2012, will be there in spirit as participants in the New River Valley Walk in Radford for the Blue Ridge chapter of the National MS Society will walk in his honor and memory.
    Mabry had already signed up to help the team that Regina Dalton of Sylvatus organized, despite coping with his own history of medical challenges.

  • Grayson shooting range search reloaded

    INDEPENDENCE — Grayson County is reloading its search for a shooting range location after a previously identified site was deemed to be unsuitable.
    County Administrator Jonathan Sweet updated the board of supervisors on the proposed location at the closed Grayson County landfill across Cornerstone Road, during the board’s regular meeting earlier this month.
    Sweet also said the county has found additional funding above the $25,000 grant the National Rifle Association has provided the county for building the range.

  • 1908 Courthouse to improve accessibility

    INDEPENDENCE — The University of North Carolina School of the Arts was set to hold its second concert of a winter concert series this month at the Historic 1908 Courthouse in Independence until handicapped accessibility issues with the building were brought to light by an activist for the disabled.
    The regional arts council has now moved the concert and all other upcoming events scheduled at the 105-year-old courthouse’s Baldwin Auditorium to new venues, and the courthouse foundation is preparing to address Americans with Disabilities Act compliance issues.

  • Gas prices soar 35¢ in 30 days

    Gas prices have soared 35 cents in the past 30 days in Virginia.
    In fact, prices went up a whopping 11 cents from Friday to Monday, and were at an average $3.61 for a gallon of self-serve regular gasoline.
    According to the American Automobile Association, the high prices drivers are seeing at the pump are a function of the age-old tension between supply and demand, and strangely enough, both are down.
    Crude oil supplies are also down in the wake of OPEC’s decision several months ago to lower production by nearly one million barrels per day.

  • Real estate values take historic dive

    HILLSVILLE — Carroll real estate values decreased during the recent reassessment for the first time in decades, Assessor Janie Harrison reported to the county supervisors on Feb. 11.
    Harrison began working in the assessor’s office in 1983, she said at the monthly county board meeting. “In 30 years, I have never seen a decline in market until now. Our overall decline was about 12.23 percent — that’s the overall land book total.”