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Local News

  • School board begins superintendent search

    The Galax School Board announced that it will begin the search for the next schools superintendent.

    After 43 years as an educator and more than 12 years with Galax City Public Schools, Superintendent Sam Cook, who will turn 65 in November, will retire at the end of 2008 and return to his hometown in Franklin County.

  • Closed meetings standard practice in Carroll

    HILLSVILLE — Closed session practices by Carroll County governments have been called into question recently, but county boards are not necessarily meeting behind closed doors more than they have in the past.

    With concerns about use of closed sessions persisting in Carroll County, The Gazette recently checked into the record of executive sessions.

    State law allows governmental bodies to meet behind closed doors in some situations where the hearing of matters in public meeting would be detrimental to a board’s position.

  • Airport proposal causes turbulence

    FRIES — The Twin County Regional Airport Commission appears to be bumping non-paying members — including the towns of Fries, Hillsville and Independence.

    Interim Airport Manager Tim Brown approached Fries Town Council at its regular meeting Sept. 2, asking members to accept or reject the commission's request to change its charter membership.

  • Behind closed doors

    HILLSVILLE — Even after a developer who sought 91 acres of Carroll-owned land for the Mayberry Opry property has ended acquisition attempts, a citizen continues to question county officials about other deals in the works and the methods used.

    Citizen Mike Goldwasser appeared at both the Industrial Development Authority meeting Sept. 3 and the Carroll Board of Supervisors meeting Sept. 8 to express continuing concerns.

  • 'Person of interest' in suspected arson found dead

    FRIES — A man described by police as a “person of interest” in a suspected arson at 142 Sunrise Lane in Fries was found dead at his house Friday afternoon.

    According to Grayson Sheriff Richard Vaughan, Thurman Davis was named a person of interest in a suspicious fire at his son-in-law's house on Sept. 11. He was found dead of an apparent gunshot wound at his own home on Providence Road the next day.

    The fire occurred last Thursday afternoon, and after a preliminary investigation by the Fries Volunteer Fire Department, it was determined to be suspicious.

  • New bridge would cost $10.2M

    The Virginia Department of Transportation proposes a new design and location for replacing the aging J.P. Carrico Memorial truss bridge on Virginia 94.

    Representative from VDOT were on hand Tuesday during a public hearing to give citizens an opportunity to offer comments or submit written material concerning the proposed construction.

    The new bridge will replace the 81-year-old J.P. Carrico Memorial truss bridge over the New River.

  • Hillsville asked to annex property

    HILLSVILLE — When the Town of Hillsville last annexed property from Carroll County in 1995, the deal approved by the state included a 15-year moratorium on further annexation.

    Now, two years before that ban is lifted, a group of Carroll property owners on the town's western border want Hillsville to take them in.

    Town Attorney Greg Goad explained that this procedure, because it was initiated by citizens instead of the town, is allowed before the moratorium expires.

  • Carroll fair to feature pageant, carnival rides

    HILLSVILLE — Two staples of the revived Carroll County Agricultural Fair will return after a year's absence.

    Fair committee chairman Kevin Semones hopes there will be something for everyone at the fair, running this year from Sept. 18 -21, Thursday through Sunday.

    Here's a hint about one event that will return, thanks to the sponsorship of the Grayson National Bank:

    "Here she is, Miss Carroll County Fair," as sung to the tune used in the Miss America pageant.

    And, fair organizers have secured Cole Amusements to bring rides on the midway.

  • Three Carroll County schools miss the mark

    HILLSVILLE — Carroll County schools missed four of their testing targets under No Child Left Behind, but educators pointed to some significant gains in math scores in this year’s results.

    The federal educational accountability effort sets up 29 standards for each school and the entire school division to meet as part of “adequate yearly progress.” Director of School Improvement Beverly Parker noted that each of the schools and the division met 313 out of 319 of those standards.

  • Woman dies in crash

    An 18-year-old Carroll County woman died as a result of a single-vehicle crash on Pleasant View Road late Tuesday.

    Bethanie Coulson, 18, was a passenger in a 1997 Toyota 4Runner that ran off the road near Stones Ridge Road, overturned and struck a tree, according to a Virginia State Police accident report by Trooper J.R. Alderman.

    Coulson was not wearing a seat belt.

    The report identified the driver as Amanda Gail Lester, 25, of Laurel Fork.