Local News

  • Houston Caldwell: A Life Cut Short

    Houston Caldwell was a leader, and a person who did everything he put his mind to, according to close friend Stevie Barr, Caldwell's first banjo teacher and the manager at Barr's Fiddle Shop in downtown Galax, where Caldwell worked during the summers for the past few years.

    Caldwell, 18, of Galax — a 2009 graduate of Carroll County High School — died as the result of a motorcycle accident last Friday.

  • Carroll IDA seeks school financing

    HILLSVILLE — Carroll educators will try to finish up a 12-year-old facilities program with a $25 million expansion of the high school and $5.55 million renovation of the intermediate school.

    Pinnacle Architects' Randy Baker and Frank Phillips briefly described the plans and presented a detailed feasibility report to the Industrial Development Authority on Monday.

  • Another kind of 'drug deal'

    A National League of Cities prescription discount card program, already used in Grayson and Carroll counties, may soon be offered in Galax.

    The card allows individuals without insurance or those underinsured to save money on prescriptions.

    City Manager Keith Barker told Galax City Council last week that the city would pay $950 to become a member of NLC, which would allow the locality to receive updates about the program and other benefits not pertaining to the prescription discount program.

  • Newcomers elected to Galax, Hillsville councils

    HILLSVILLE — A new member will join Hillsville Town Council in July, after winning a seat in Tuesday's municipal election.

    In the only contested race, Billy Walls Sr. bested incumbent Frieda Jessup to become the Sulphur Springs Ward representative on town council.

    Walls got 59 votes, or 56 percent of all ballots cast, compared to the 45 votes that went to Jessup, according to unofficial results from the Carroll County Voter Registrar's Office.

  • Write-in candidate wins seat in Independence

    INDEPENDENCE — A surprise write-in candidate won one of three Independence Town Council seats in the May 4 election.

    Independence residents elected a mayor and three council members last Tuesday.

    Of the 86 write-in votes cast by citizens, 42 wrote in votes for Jeremy Walters.

    That was enough to oust council member Cecil Adams, who received the lowest number of votes, 36.

    Also elected were W. F. “Buddy” Halsey, former vice mayor, with 43 votes and Tom E. Maxwell, current vice mayor, with 44 votes.

  • Man attacked while sleeping

    HILLSVILLE — Armed robbers broke into a home on Bronco Road early last Thursday, assaulted a resident and took $300 after a struggle, according to Carroll Sheriff Warren Manning.

    Police have 27-year-old Kimberly Ann Edwards, no address given, in custody, but are still searching for 31-year-old Chris Robert Childress of Hillsville in connection with the incident, the sheriff said.

    The break-in occurred during the early morning hours at the home of Robert Caldwell, according to a press release. At the time, Caldwell was at home sleeping.

  • Grayson considers 49 tax levy

    INDEPENDENCE — Grayson County residents will likely see a 44 percent increase in their real estate taxes next year, a decision that came last Wednesday as supervisors began winding down the budget process.

    The board of supervisors welcomed Corbin Stone of Robinson, Farmer, Cox Associates — the firm completing a financial forecast for the county — to its budget work session on May 5.

    Stone presented the board with a draft of the county’s financial forecast, which projects Grayson’s fiscal health over the next five years.

  • Community programs face major cuts

    To June Donithan, it feels like she has just moved into a new home, she says, as a weatherization crew of Rooftop of Virginia Community Action Program and others work to repair her 1970s- model trailer by replacing windows and doors, and putting in insulation, fire and carbon monoxide detectors and energy-efficient lights.

    “It’s like a miracle,” said Donithan, 82, of Galax. “It’s a blessing that God would send these people here so I might have a better way of living and paying for heating and electric bills.”

  • No time to waste on construction loan

    HILLSVILLE — There's a lot to do to qualify for a federal loan, and not much time to do it, said Rural Development's Travis Jackson in a visit to the Carroll Board of Supervisors meeting Monday.

    There's some urgency if Carroll County officials want to qualify for the loan to renovate two schools and get a 35 percent rebate on interest from the federal government, Jackson noted, when joining Carroll Schools Superintendent Greg Smith in a presentation to the county board.

  • Fall opening a slim chance for school


    The Grayson County School Board did not discuss or take any action on the Grayson Highlands School issues at its meeting on May 13.


    It could happen.

    The new Grayson Highlands School could open in August.

    That’s what school officials indicated to parents, community members and other interested citizens attending the school’s first community meeting on May 6.