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Local News

  • Ground broken for major Carroll utility project

    WOODLAWN — Winter weather cut down on the warmth with which the ground breaking of the Woodlawn sewer might have received on a more mild day than Dec. 9.

    Moisture-laden winds on that overcast day made the temperatures seem cooler than the 40s, which prompted Rep. Rick Boucher (D-Abingdon) to keep his remarks brief.

    The U.S. Congressman, as well as local officials, stressed the broad swath of Carroll County to which the $5.26 million project will provide wastewater treatment services.

  • FMS renovation bids lower than expected

    INDEPENDENCE — In November 2008, Grayson Schools' Superintendent Dr. Elizabeth Thomas pleaded her case to the board of supervisors that the budget for Phase I of the new school project was still within the 10 percent margin allowed.

    In December, the low bid was way off from the school system's prediction of $6.4 million for renovations at Fries Middle School — but, on the positive side this time.

  • Wreck a reminder of deadly explosion

    Almost a year to the day after a tragic propane tank explosion that killed two and injured three others at a laundromat in Fries, a chillingly similar accident occurred in Galax.

    After a car struck the Fries tank on Dec. 10, 2007, leaking gas was ignited by spark from a clothes dryer. The result was a fireball that set a fire station ablaze and a shockwave that heavily damaged a building.

    This time, thankfully, no one was injured.

  • Carroll connection fee raises question

    HILLSVILLE — County subsidized water connections for citizens will no longer be offered, starting with a possible project in western Carroll, Public Service Authority members decided at their Dec. 8 meeting.

    Circumstances have changed since the days that Carroll County covered connection fees when citizens who signed up prior to project construction got free hook-ups, authority members discussed.

  • Court denies Dutton's murder convition appeal

    An appeals court has upheld the murder conviction against a 57-year-old Ivanhoe man in the Jan. 3, 2007, shooting death of his estranged wife.

    Robert Allen Dutton was convicted in the first-degree murder of his wife, 41-year-old Sandra, by a seven-man, five-woman jury in a Carroll County Circuit Court trial.

    Dutton was also found guilty of burglary and use of a firearm. He was sentenced to two life terms plus three years in prison.

  • Road added to utility project

    HILLSVILLE — The Woodlawn sewer project — already intended to cover a huge swath of western Carroll County — grew by one road at the Public Sewer Authority's meeting in December.

    Carrollwood Drive property owner and businessman John Nobili had been persistent in lobbying for his road's inclusion in the $5.26 million wastewater project.

  • Boucher prepares for 2009

    Looking into the new year with a new president, Rep. Rick Boucher (D-Abingdon) said president-elect Barack Obama will have a cooperative U.S. Congress that will serve in confronting the nation's challenges.

    Boucher discussed future plans, legislative agenda and the previous year's successes during his annual stop at The Gazette on Dec. 31.

    The Democratic “super delegate” was an Obama supporter from early on, sticking to his endorsement even though his district went for Hillary Clinton in 2008's Virginia Democratic primary.

  • Carroll named agricultural 'disaster area'

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — Farmers in Carroll County felt the heat over the summer, but federal representatives say that relief is on the way.

    On the last day of 2008, Sen. Jim Webb (D-VA) and 9th District Rep. Rick Boucher (D-Abingdon) announced that parts of Southwest Virginia have been designated agricultural disaster areas, meaning that farmers who suffered crop losses due to the drought and excessive heat may be eligible to receive assistance from the federal government.

  • Stolen Escalade found in Grayson

    A 2008 Cadillac Escalade allegedly stolen in Fancy Gap has been recovered on a rural road in Grayson County.

    A motorist called the Grayson County Sheriff’s Department Dec. 22 to report a vehicle parked on the shoulder of Greenhouse Road, off Powerhouse Road about 2.5 miles from U.S. 58.

    Grayson sheriff’s deputies, Independence Police Chief James Wagoner and Virginia State Trooper Alan Vaughan went to the scene and had to ford a creek to reach the abandoned vehicle.

  • Turman ordered to remain in hospital

    HILLSVILLE — A Dugspur woman found not guilty by reason of insanity in the 2006 beating death of her mother will remain in a state hospital at the order of a Carroll County judge.

    Rene Loving Turman was charged after her mother, Susan Sprinkle Clark, 79, was found dead in a trailer on Double Cabin Road by Carroll deputies.

    Turman had called authorities herself to report the incident, saying that she had "bludgeoned" her mother to death.

    Asked why by a dispatcher, Turman responded that it was because her mother was "a demon."