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Local News

  • Sawyers development plan finding support

    With at least the support from the public, local developer Charles Cecil said he is confident he will be able to get funding to open a training/manufacturing facility in the former Sawyers Furniture building in Galax — possibly within 30 to 60 days.

    “It's going to happen,” said Cecil. “It's just taking longer than expected.”

  • Carroll Chamber making comeback

    HILLSVILLE — The Carroll County Chamber of Commerce is here to stay, says the acting president, as officials prepare to hold the group's first general meeting in months.

    The chamber's mission to promote Carroll County, its businesses and attractions came to a halt last year as embezzlement charges were filed against its former executive director, said Greg Yonce, who's serving as the chamber's chief official in the interim.

    With that court case settled, the time has come for the chamber to pursue that mission once again.

  • Grayson: savings from closed schools still not enough

    INDEPENDENCE — As the debate continues over how much money Grayson schools should return to the county — savings from the closing of schools — the supervisors may take matters into their own hands.

    During a budget workshop meeting April 14, Grayson Schools' Director of Instruction and Assessment Steven Cornett presented the supervisors with the information they had requested earlier in the month.

  • Carroll's Exit 19 project gets $1.9 million

    HILLSVILLE — Earth Day came a little bit early for Carroll County this year, and with it a $1.9 million check from the federal government to pay for sewer service to Exit 19 and Wildwood Commerce Park.

    Ninth District Rep. Rick Boucher (D-Abingdon) and Rural Development's Travis Jackson on Monday presented the check for a low-interest loan to fund the sewer project that will serve the Interstate 77 area, including the under-development commerce park and 34 homes on Airport Road and Training Center Road, Boucher said.

  • Wired Road connects Twin Counties to world

    The Wired Road broadband project — which is being deployed throughout Galax, Grayson and Carroll counties — will be the first step to re-engineering and revitalizing the economy, announced Sen. William Wampler during a ribbon cutting ceremony at the Rex Theater on Monday for the official launch.

    “It's no longer a theory, but is actually going to happen,” he said.

    State and local leaders explained how the $26 million project will make a significant and positive difference to the regional communities and stabilize the local economy.

  • Citizens appeal county's Spirit Harbor decision

    INDEPENDENCE — The decision whether to allow a proposed 150-site recreational park known as Spirit Harbor is now in the hands of Grayson County Circuit Court.

    According to documents filed April 10, community members — 15 in total, many of whom had spoken in opposition of the plan — petitioned the court to review the decision of the Grayson Board of Supervisors.

  • Grayson budget short by $1.3 million

    INDEPENDENCE — With Grayson County government's expenses rising drastically, leaders have to decide if a tax increase is the only answer to make ends meet next year.

    Preliminary numbers show Grayson's budget short by $2.4 million. Early projections of revenue are $14.3 million, and expenses are expected to total $17.1 million.

    The deficit, however, does not include the money expected to be returned by the school board for savings on school closures — which is good news, as the money could be anywhere from $377,000 to more than $600,000.

  • Feds take over marijuana hauling case

    HILLSVILLE — Two of three suspects arrested after Carroll deputies found 313 pounds of marijuana hidden away in a tractor-trailer now face federal charges.

    Carroll deputies and a Virginia State Police trooper in March searched a suspicious tractor-trailer parked at the Kangaroo Express on Virginia 148 in Fancy Gap.

    They found inside 313 pounds of marijuana packaged in mustard and coffee grounds.

    Deputies also found two men in the trailer after talking to the driver, and the drug dog alerted on the trailer.

  • Red Cross needs emergency funds

    On Christmas Day, one Carroll County family lost everything they had, including their children's presents, when their house caught fire.

    The Woods River Chapter of American Red Cross found them a place to stay and helped with their emergency needs.

    “That lady comes by the office regularly just to say thanks and helps us [by giving to fundraisers] to make our money,” said Joan Isom, Galax chapter director. “We live in a community that is very appreciative of what we do. And I have that to look forward to every day.”

  • Independence police chief calls for backup

    INDEPENDENCE — The Town of Independence Police Department wants more officers, but it appears the only way to fund them is through a tax increase — something town council does not want to do.

    During a budget workshop session April 22, Police Chief James Wagoner pleaded his case requesting an additional $63,932 in his department's 2009-10 budget.

    “I put in money for another officer,” Wagoner told council. “I would like to be ready for the opening of the new prison and be proactive, instead of reactive.”