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Local News

  • Grayson restores pool schedule

    INDEPENDENCE — After complaints arose about Grayson County’s swimming pool being open fewer days this summer, supervisors announced last week the pool would be back on schedule immediately.

    Grayson County Board of Supervisors Chairman Mike Maynard announced during the board’s regular meeting June 12 that the pool was back on its regular schedule and would remain that way throughout the summer.

  • Library to host hobby show

    D&J Hobby Center in Galax will hold its 9th Annual Hobby Show on June 21 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m at the Galax Public Library.

    Owner and show organizer Darrell Burris said moving the show to the library was beneficial last year, and the more accessible venue brought in a lot of new people to enter model kits for competition and visitors to look at the works on display.

    The library is on West Stuart Drive in Galax, not far from the hobby shop at 106 Nuckolls Curve Road.

  • School board discusses facility needs

    INDEPENDENCE — Beginning this fall, students at Grayson County High School will have a new cosmetology lab — if plans go as expected.

    During Grayson’s school board meeting June 9, Maintenance Supervisor Roy Anders said a location had been selected for the cosmetology lab.

    “We took some road trips to Wythe and Carroll and are ready to go as soon as we get a layout,” said Anders.

    The new lab will be located in one of the mobile units on the high school’s campus and is expected to have 10 stations that will accommodate 20 students.

  • Independence tax hike draws no opposition at hearing

    INDEPENDENCE — Only two citizens turned out for a public hearing about a proposed tax increase on real estate in Independence — and neither was in opposition.

    Town council held a public hearing Tuesday on a proposed 10.2 percent increase in the real estate tax rate from 12.7 cents to 14 cents per $100 valuation.

    The increase will bring in an estimated $11,000 additional to the town and cover a $10,000 deficit the town faced after deciding not to pull funding from Independence Rescue Squad.

  • County warned to use caution

    HILLSVILLE — Meeting in closed sessions to decide whether to accept a proposal to build the Mayberry Opry Theater on 91 acres of Carroll County land breeds suspicion in the public, one citizen told county officials.

    Mike Goldwasser approached the Carroll supervisors at their Monday meeting, after sending letters to the editors of local newspapers, with concerns about transparency in the process and other steps that he feels need to happen before action can be taken on a proposal to build the theater near the county recreation park.

  • Judge denies camera request for murder trial

    INDEPENDENCE — Cameras will not be allowed during court proceedings for a man charged with three counts of capital murder in Grayson County.

    Roanoke television station WDBJ 7 filed a motion in Grayson County District Court last month requesting permission to cover Frederick P. Hammer’s hearings and trial with video cameras.

    Hammer, 48, was arrested Jan. 26 in connection with the shooting deaths two days earlier of Ronald Hudler, 74, of Mouth of Wilson; his son, Fred Hudler, 45; and tree farm worker John Miller Jr., 25.

  • Four seek appointment to Hillsville Town Council

    HILLSVILLE — Supporters of an unsuccessful mayoral candidate in the May town election believe he should be appointed to Hillsville Town Council when his former opponent — Sulphur Springs Council Member Bill Tate — steps into the role of mayor in July.

    Tate's new position will leave a vacancy on council, and Billy Walls Sr. and his supporters want him to take Tate's place as the representative for the town's Sulphur Springs district.

    Tate got 288 votes in the May 6 election, and Walls got 175.

  • GHS renovation on schedule

    Galax High School Principal Bill Sturgill and Galax School Board Superintendent Sam Cook couldn't hide their excitement as they walked through the hallways of GHS, pointing out each recently restored classroom, rooms that are undergoing construction and the soon-to-be main entrance.

    This is all a part of an $8 million renovation project, which is expected to be complete in October. The school was built in the 1950s and hasn't had much of an update since.

  • Citizens allege wasteful spending

    HILLSVILLE — Besides accusing Carroll supervisors of being late to their public hearing on the fiscal year 2008-09 budget proposal, citizens also slammed the board for wasteful spending.

    The speakers at Monday’s hearing took the opportunity to share with the supervisors their opinions about the budget proposal that features a 59.5-cent real estate tax levy, following close on the heels of a land reassessment that pushed property values higher by an average of 40 percent.

  • Board rejects new school bids

    INDEPENDENCE — After receiving initial bids for the new school to be built in the Volney community of Grayson County, school board members opted to readvertise for construction bids after making some changes to the plan.

    Bids were due on June 3 for constructing the new facility, originally proposed to cost $6 million. The school board received three bids — all of which were far more than the proposed amount.