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Local News

  • Grayson prepares new voting machines

    INDEPENDENCE — The Grayson County Electoral Board in Independence is busy preparing for the Nov. 7 general election; which includes a full test of new voting machines that will be used throughout the districts this year.

    The new machines will replace the county’s former electronic touchscreen machines — an upgrade that was planned for the county prior to the State Board of Election’s decision earlier this month to decertify touchscreen voting machines.

  • Cana house fire investigated

    CANA — The Carroll County Sheriff’s Office and the Virginia State Police investigated a structure fire in Cana on Tuesday.

    The fire, at 11:05 a.m. on Brushy Fork Road, destroyed a trailer but left no injuries or casualties, according to Cana Fire Capt. Matthew Fink.

    “No one was living there that we know of, because there was no power to the house,” said Fink.

    The trailer was completely destroyed by the time the Cana Volunteer Fire Department was able to put out the fire.

    Carroll Fire and Rescue assisted.

  • Carroll could combine Oakland voting precincts

    HILLSVILLE — When Dennie Shockley, chairman of the Carroll County Electoral Board, spoke to Carroll County supervisors on Monday, he noted that the agency is usually there to ask for money.

    Instead, Shockley said he was there to save the county money.

    The board, which oversees all elections in the county, had a proposal to combine two voting precincts at Oakland Elementary School, created due to a previous realignment of districts.

  • School officials address football field questions

    After a city council member raised questions about the need for a new artificial turf football field at Galax High School, given the $879,000 cost, school officials decided to address the issue directly in an interview with The Gazette.

    “I think it’s time we attempt to answer the football field [question], but in the attempt, we’re going to answer some other things,” said Schools Superintendent Bill Sturgill.

    The field is already completed and was dedicated last month.

  • GHS launches $650K campaign for fitness center

    Good things came from the life of Curtis Bartlett.

  • I-77 center helps out Floridians fleeing Irma

    LAMBSBURG — The Virginia Welcome Center at Lambsburg saw high traffic this past weekend as many people fleeing Hurricane Irma passed over the Virginia border.

    For the weekend, several portable toilets and pallets of bottled water were brought in to help handle the extra people. The water was free for anyone who came through.

    A welcome center employee said that the facility on Interstate 77 in Carroll County saw evacuees as early as Sept. 4, but the traffic picked up as the week went on.

  • Free Market opens in Independence

    INDEPENDENCE — The Free Market, a new community resource offered by Grayson LandCare, is now open to the public and accepting items and monetary donations.

  • Police: sex offender used library Wi-Fi to contact kids

    INDEPENDENCE — An Independence man has been arrested and charged with soliciting a minor through social media, allegedly through the abuse of public internet access at the local library.

    According to a news release from Grayson County Sheriff Richard Vaughan, deputies arrested James Michael Fantazier, 25, on Sept. 1.

  • Find legal assistance for DACA, but watch out for fraud

    Staff Report

    The Better Business Bureau (BBB) is concerned about fraudsters taking advantage of confusion over the latest news on DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals).

    “We know from long experience that whenever a new government program is introduced, or when there are changes to an existing program, there is some confusion about what exactly is happening,” the bureau said in a news release. “Scammers take advantage of that confusion in order to defraud consumers.”

  • Future uncertain for young DREAMers

    “I think most of our parents brought us here for a better life, for the American Dream,” says Gustavo Mar of Galax, who came to America from Mexico with his family in 1999.

    He was 9 years old, and Mar and his two sisters were accepted into the federal Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program as soon as it was created. They’re among about 800,000 young people in the U.S. — from toddlers to millennials — often called “Dreamers.”