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Today's News

  • An Affordable Option

    When it comes to construction, the Great Recession has caused the bottom to fall out of the housing market.

    This slowdown has caused surviving construction companies to clamor for work — and increased competitiveness for remaining projects.

    As a result, the construction projects that have gone forward have actually benefitted from lower-than-normal prices.

    The earth-moving project for the runway safe area at the Twin County Airport is a good example, as it came in at about half the initial engineer's estimate, or a little less than $700,000.

  • Airport breaks ground for runway safe project

    HILLSVILLE — The earth shifted in a way for the Twin County Airport last Friday, as government officials broke ground for a project that will launch a new safety effort at the facility.

    Regional and state officials, as well as a representative from 9th District Rep. Rick Boucher's office, converged on the airport in Carroll County to break ground for a runway safe area project.

  • VDOT reduces staff, begins reorganization

    The Virginia Department of Transportation is completing major portions of its reorganization this week to reach a mandated staffing reduction to 7,500 full-time employees by July 1, and to streamline the way it does business.

    VDOT’s restructuring program changes business practices and alters the way citizens, developers, localities, businesses and transportation industry contacts will do business with the agency.

  • Jessup, Walls run for town council seat

    HILLSVILLE — Sulphur Springs ward voters going to the polls May 4 will have the choice of casting ballots for Frieda Jessup or Billy Walls Sr.

    This is the only contested race in Hillsville, where two candidates are vying for the same seat on town council.

    Voters can return to office Jessup, who was appointed to fill the vacancy created when former representative Bill Tate was elected mayor two years ago. Or, they can select Walls, the co-owner of B&T Garage.

  • Arson charge filed in Grayson

    INDEPENDENCE — An Independence man has been charged with arson for allegedly setting fire to his deceased neighbor's home.

    On April 22, deputies from the Grayson County Sheriff's Office responded to a suspected arson at 7052 Carsonville Road in Independence.

    Grayson County Sheriff Richard Vaughan said that the owner of the residence, Oscar Lee Young, had been hospitalized in Winston-Salem, N.C., and passed away that same day from an unrelated illness.

  • Massive tax increase could be required

    INDEPENDENCE — A 120-percent increase in Grayson’s real estate tax levy would be necessary to pull the county out of its financial hole in a 12-month period, supervisors learned last week.

    County officials have cited a possible deficit of $5.5 million by year’s end in previous meetings, so it comes as no surprise that Grayson would need to increase its traditionally low tax levy.

  • Jones indicted on murder charge

    INDEPENDENCE — Danielle Nicole Ilene Jones, 22, of Galax has been indicted on a second-degree murder charge in the fatal shooting of her brother, Mathew Jackson Jones, 18, of Galax.

    A Grayson County Circuit Court grand jury returned the indictment on April 23. It is a formal charge, not a finding of guilt.

    According to report from the Galax Police Department, officers received a call about 2 a.m. on Dec. 14, 2009, to 202 Kenbrook Drive. Police officers found Jones’ body inside the home.

  • Car runs off road, hits house in Carroll

    A vehicle that went out of control at 4825 Buckwoods Road Saturday afternoon caused $30,000 in damage to a home there.

    The accident occurred at about 2 p.m. when a 2002 Dodge Durango, driven by Joy Nicole Lawrence, 27, of Galax ran off of the road to the right, according to a police report by Virginia State Police Trooper K.D. Blackburn.

  • Bond set in high-speed chase case

    HILLSVILLE — A suspect in a drug investigation and high speed chase with officers from five localities got a $100,000 bond in a Carroll General District Court hearing last Friday, but prosecutors are appealing the ruling.

    Donald Scott Vaughan, 52, of Galax allegedly left the scene of a drug buy — set up by the Claytor Lake Drug Task Force near Exit 14 off Interstate 77 on April 15 — before the purchase could take place.

  • WCC enrollment up from 2009

    Students attending Wytheville Community College classes at the Crossroads Institute make up 20 percent of the college's enrollment, said Dr. Charles White, as he updated Galax City Council on April 12.

    WCC has an enrollment of 3,783 students, with 273 students from Galax and 93 Galax High School students enrolled in college credit classes.

    Enrollment at WCC, he said, has gone up 40 percent in four years, and is up 18.9 percent from a year ago.