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Local News

  • $10 billion budget increase proposed

    RICHMOND — Your household budget may not be growing in this era of flat wages, but Virginia’s is.
    Gov. Bob McDonnell’s proposed budget for the next biennium totals nearly $96 billion, an increase from the $86 billion for the current two-year cycle that runs through June 2014.

  • More water work on the way at Exit 1

    HILLSVILLE — More water supply work will take place at Interstate 77 Exit 1 soon, after the Carroll Public Service Authority recently requested bids for an improvement project there.
    Authority officials have issued advertisements seeking sealed bids for two components in this effort:
    • for installation of lines and a pump station.
    This will include 16,100 feet of pipe up to eight inches in diameter.
    • for a 105,000 gallon water storage tank, which includes an access road and piping.

  • Grayson disbands rec board

    INDEPENDENCE — The Grayson County Board of Supervisors made a surprising move on Dec. 12 with the decision to disband the Grayson County Parks and Recreation Policy Committee.
    The vote was a controversial one, with citizens and two supervisors protesting the decision. Supervisor David Sexton brought the recommendation to the board, saying there had been discussion for some time about the fate of the committee leading up to that night.

  • PSA ponders what to do with leftover grant money

    HILLSVILLE — Carroll Public Service Authority members indicated their preference for using leftover project funds towards reaching out to new users at their Dec. 9 meeting.
    County County Administrator Gary Larrowe introduced the topic of unspent funds from the sewer project at Interstate 77 Exit 19 sewer, regional water projects and Fancy Gap water, and then turned the discussion over to engineer Kevin Heath to make recommendations on what could be done with that money.
    All funds come from Rural Development in the form of loans and grants.

  • Woodlawn now property of county

    HILLSVILLE — The Carroll County supervisors accepted the former Woodlawn School on Dec. 9, and they will ask the public for input on the facility’s future use in January.
    A lot involving Woodlawn has taken place this fall after the school that taught students for more than a century closed, Supervisor Sam Dickson said in a report at the county board meeting.
    The Carroll County School Board declared the school and its grounds surplus earlier this fall in a 3-2 vote.

  • Law would keep fast lane from slowing down

    RICHMOND — One of the quickest proposals to emerge for the 2014 General Assembly tells slow drivers to stay out of the left interstate lane.
    Early filings from Del. Israel O’Quinn (R-5th District), who represents Grayson County, authored House Bill 51.
    The proposal adds a line into the section of state law covering minimum speed limits, according to a filing made Dec. 3.
    No person shall operate a motor vehicle “at less than the posted maximum speed limit in the left-most lane of any interstate highway,” according to the text of HB 51.

  • Galax must come up with stormwater funding plan

    By SHAINA STOCKTON, Staff
    City officials are still reviewing options for a new stormwater program that is required of all state localities by next summer.
    Carolyn Howard of Draper-Aden Associates paid a visit to Galax City Council in November, where she proposed a utility fee for city residents to cover the costs of the Virginia Stormwater Management Program (VSMP). This fee would not only pay for the project, but it would also allow city workers to repair and strengthen an aging stormwater system.

  • Women's shelter in the works

    The Galax Hope House of the Good Shepherd, a faith-based ministry that offers a men’s shelter and a variety of other services to anyone in need, will soon have a refuge for women, as well.
    Construction on a new women’s shelter has been confirmed by the group, and they are hoping to have it finished and ready for occupants by March 2014. At this time, crews and volunteers are working to bring the three-bedroom house up to code.

  • Governor proposes mental health reforms

    RICHMOND — Gov. Bob McDonnell plans to revamp Virginia’s mental health system by lengthening the time a person in crisis can be held for evaluation, providing $38 million more for support services over two years, and creating a task force to recommend changes in the aftermath of a shocking tragedy.
    He announced those plans Tuesday during a news conference held weeks after the son of state Sen. Creigh Deeds stabbed his father before taking his own life at their Bath County home on the morning of Nov. 19.

  • Federal agency refuses to return money to Carroll

    HILLSVILLE — Rural Development officials, after clawing back approximately $280,000 from the Fancy Gap sewer project for an overlooked environmental report, have so far refused to return the money to the Carroll Public Service Authority.
    After the authority members went into a closed session at their regular December meeting on Monday to discuss the situation with Rural Development, they talked about continuing their appeal to the federal funding agency.