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Local News

  • Campaign workers attacked

    Two people were arrested Monday afternoon after an altercation led to five Republican campaign workers being sprayed with Mace at their headquarters in Galax.

    Galax Police Chief Rick Clark said officers were dispatched shortly before 1 p.m. to the Galax Republican headquarters on East Grayson Street when a caller reported someone had sprayed office workers with Mace.

    Responding officers arrested Daniel Cason Meinecke, 29, and Cara Annis Hindman, 26, both of Galax.

  • Manslaughter, DUI charges dropped in triple fatality

    HILLSVILLE — Three reckless driving convictions against a 47-year-old Pilot Mountain, N.C., man were the legal conclusion on Tuesday in his preliminary hearing in connection with a March 22 wreck that killed three people instantly on Interstate 77.

    Virginia State Police had charged Gary Edward Hicinbothem with driving under the influence of alcohol, reckless driving and three counts of involuntary manslaughter in the crash not far from the Fancy Gap exit in Carroll County.

  • Water projects making progress

    INDEPENDENCE — A site has been chosen for the new regional water system in Independence — but the land purchase must still be negotiated.

    Bobby Lane of Lane Engineering updated Independence Town Council Oct. 14 on the progress of both the new water system and the upgrades to the town's wastewater plant — both of which will serve the new state prison being built just outside Independence.

    Lane said a site has been chosen for the new water plant, but the land had not been secured yet.

  • Art school renovation to begin

    After several delays and more than two years after purchasing a building, USDA Rural Development has given Galax the go-ahead to solicit bids for renovating the old First National Bank building downtown into Chestnut Creek School of the Arts by mid-2009.

    Bids for construction will be opened Oct. 30, and are expected to be presented to Galax City Council on Nov. 10. After the bidder is chosen and the contract awarded, construction should begin before the end of the year.

  • Free clinic to hold fundraiser

    An extravaganza fundraising event for the Free Clinic of the Twin Counties will be held Friday and Saturday at the Grover King VFW Post 1115 in Hillsville.

    Friday night starts at 7 p.m. and will feature bluegrass and old-time music with JoAnn Redd & Friends, Kilby Spencer & Friends, The Heritage IV, James Marshall and The Highlanders.

    Hot dogs and drinks will be available, with $5 admission.

  • Mandatory water draws fire

    HILLSVILLE — A Dugspur man told two Carroll County boards last Tuesday that he doesn't want to be left high and dry on the issues of water in his community and on mandatory connections.

    Citizen Arden Huff has been working to raise interest in water supplied by the Carroll Public Service Authority to Dugspur, and he now feels that the rules have changed in midstream.

    Mandatory connections would require, under certain conditions, imposing a fee for a residence that's not hooked up to the water system.

  • Town sets conditions on airport proposal

    INDEPENDENCE — The Twin County Regional Airport Commission received another vote in favor of restructuring on Oct. 9 — but may have a fight left with Independence.

    Town council members discussed a plan to give up Independence's seat on the commission only if members from Galax, Carroll and Grayson give up theirs and new members are appointed.

  • State grants two AEP hikes

    State regulators last week approved two rate increases sought by Appalachian Power Co., and later this month will hold a public hearing on a third proposal that could increase customers' electricity costs by an average of nearly 24 percent.

    The approved rates were less than the company originally requested, but spokesman Todd Burns said the electric utility supported the State Corporation Commission's decisions.

    One case involved Appalachian's request for a fuel rate increase.

  • Grayson school behind schedule

    INDEPENDENCE — Grading is nearly complete, a source of water has tentatively been agreed upon and rebar is on the ground at the site of the new Grayson Highlands School in the Volney community of Grayson.

    Grayson Schools' Director of Personnel Chad Newman updated the school board at its regular meeting Oct. 13 and said he expected the concrete building pad to be complete in the near future.

    “I was told we were a month behind,” said Board Member Shannon Holdaway.

  • VDOT planning leaner operation

    Virginia officials expect state and federal transportation revenues to decrease by as much as $2.6 billion over the next six years, leading to more cuts in the state's road-building plan and reduced services at the Virginia Department of Transportation.

    "Every county, every city, every town will have reduced services, fewer projects and, arguably, fewer opportunities as a consequence of this," said Secretary of Transportation Pierce Homer in an Oct. 15 presentation to the Commonwealth Transportation Board.