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Local News

  • Fancy Gap looks to cash in on parkway

    FANCY GAP — Public water or no, Fancy Gap business owners and community members will do what they can to get visitors to detour off the Blue Ridge Parkway.

    Owners continue to invest capital in their own business. Plans to re-open a visitor center should come to fruition by April.

    Interested parties want to organize new community events, put together a brochure about Fancy Gap, do beautification and improve curb appeal — anything they can do to get the millions of travelers that pass through the area to stop.

  • Grayson approves early retirement plan

    INDEPENDENCE — To the pleasure of several eligible school division employees in attendance last Thursday night, the Grayson County School Board approved a plan that will allow nearly 30 employees to retire years early from the division.

    The early retirement program was first discussed at last month's meeting, but the school board wanted more time and information to be sure it would save the school system money.

    Grayson Schools Superintendent Dr. Elizabeth Thomas told the board that the program would not only benefit the school system, but also the employees.

  • Public record for 2/4/09 edition

    Editor’s Note: This information is taken from open court records and is a matter of public record. The listings are complete. The newspaper, as a matter of fairness, will not honor requests to omit any listing. 

    For information on this column or questions, call Terri King at 236-5178, ext. 213.

    District Court

    These sentences were recorded in October in the Carroll County General District Court Office, Hillsville. Sentences may be appealed:

    Virginia A. Stanley of Galax, guilty of bad check larceny of $200; pay $71 costs.

  • AmerLink files for bankruptcy

    RALEIGH, N.C. — Log home manufacturing company AmerLink filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection last week, counting among its more than 200 creditors including Carroll County, Va., a total debt of $20 million.

    The Battleboro-based company that makes and sells log houses petitioned the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in the Eastern District of North Carolina in Raleigh Feb. 11.

  • Carroll pins hopes on stimulus funds

    HILLSVILLE — Hoping that federal stimulus funds might trickle down to Carroll County, the Public Service Authority made a cascade of decisions Feb. 9 on water and sewer projects.

    One of the goals of the federal stimulus package is creating jobs through "shovel-ready" projects.

    Authority member David Hutchins — fresh from visits with federal and state legislators in Washington, D.C., and Richmond — said nobody knew yet how the federal funds would be disbursed.

  • VDOT cuts go deeper in Grayson

    INDEPENDENCE — In an effort to keep from giving county residents false hope that more projects on the Virginia Department of Transportation's six-year plan will be complete within that time frame, VDOT has opted to not hold a public hearing regarding Grayson's plan this year.

    Matthew Cox of VDOT gave the Grayson Board of Supervisors more grim news regarding the state budget cuts at the Feb. 12 meeting.

    Cox estimated that VDOT will see a reduction of more than $2 billion in state funding for fiscal year 2009.

  • Sturgill named new Galax school chief

    The Galax School Board named Bill Sturgill as the division's new superintendent on Monday, and the former Galax High School principal began his new job the next day.

    The board also appointed Bill Sutherland, formerly assistant principal, as GHS's new principal during a short board meeting on Monday.

    Sturgill succeeds Sam Cook, who retired in December and returned to his hometown in Franklin County.

    Sturgill signed the contract for the superintendent's job during the meeting.

  • Galax unemployment among highest in state

    RICHMOND — Galax was one of the Virginia localities posting double-digit unemployment figures for December 2008, according to a report issued last week by the Virginia Employment Commission.

    The city’s rate for that month was 10.9 percent — the sixth-highest in the state.

    Unemployment rates for the counties also rose from November to December, putting Carroll at 9.6 percent and Grayson at 9.1 percent.

    Virginia merchants reported the worst holiday sales since 1969 in December, the VEC reported.

  • Bid awarded for water intake plant

    INDEPENDENCE — A Martinsville company was recently awarded the bid to construct the intake for the new water treatment plant that will eventually serve the towns of Independence and Sparta, N.C., as well as the new state prison being built in Grayson County.

    According to the Virginia/Carolina Regional Water Authority Chairman Bryan Edwards, a total of six bids were received on the intake.

    Prillaman & Pace, Inc., of Martinsville, submitted the low bid of $129,888 (including a base bid of $85,546 and an additional alternate bid of $44,342.)

  • Crime down overall in Galax

    Galax's overall crime rate for 2008 was down by 15 percent from the previous year, but property crimes rose by 15 percent and violent crimes — including assault, rape and murder — increased by 25 percent,

    Galax Police Chief Rick Clark presented his annual report to Galax City Council on Feb. 9.

    Violent crimes, Clark told council, are typically in relation to alcohol-related activity. The number of violent crimes reported last year totaled 206, with increases in aggravated assault, sexual assault and assault by threat.