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Today's News

  • Rates make life difficult for low-income renters

    Ted Bartlett, who owns apartments on Grayson Street in Galax, said he received a huge surprise when he opened his water and sewer bill this month — the bimonthly bill jumped from $210 to $649.

    Galax City Council approved a new water and sewer use ordinance in November 2007 that requires individual apartment and trailer park units, which share a common meter, to be charged a separate minimum fee — the same as those who live in houses in the city.

  • No shock: APCo wants fuel factor increase

    Appalachian Power Co. wants to increase the fuel factor component of its Virginia customers’ bills, a move that could increase the bill for an average residential electricity user by 11.7 percent.

    The company said dramatic increases in the costs of coal, caused by a growing global coal market and a relatively weak dollar, are leading to higher costs to fuel the company’s power plants.

  • Shelter Solutions

    Few topics inspire as much passion as animals and their treatment, and those strong feelings were brought to the surface recently in Galax, when a citizen pleaded the city to extend the amount of time dogs and cats are kept at the regional animal shelter before they are euthanized.

    City officials promised to look into the matter, with assurances that they do indeed care about our four-legged friends and their fates.

    But, there’s a painful reality check coming.

  • Lender looks to help local businesses

    INDEPENDENCE — Grayson County took the first step towards helping prospective small-business owners receive funding to get their businesses running in the Twin Counties.

    Brian Phipps of People Inc. of Abingdon approached the Grayson Board of Supervisors about the business providing a micro-lending program for emerging businesses in the Twin Counties.

    Phipps said People Inc. was looking to form a partnership between Grayson and Carroll counties and Galax.

  • Grayson launches new websites

    INDEPENDENCE — Grayson County launched a brand new — and more interactive — Web site June 26 in hopes of helping local citizens gather information about the county and its governing body.

    The new site — GraysonVirginia.com — has been in the works for about four months and still has some glitches to work out after being launched a few weeks early.

    Grayson Assistant County Administrator Felicia Hash said the old site contracted a virus and was losing information rapidly.

  • Bringing back playtime

    Like most parents, Carrie Phipps — a mother of three and director of the Wellness Center in Galax — has begun to notice how technology has replaced the kind of active play children once knew, the sharp decline in physical activity and the lack of children's fitness programs.

    "There's not a lot offered in the area for this population, except for sports," said Phipps. "And with a lot of sports, heavier kids cannot participate."

  • Grayson SOL scores on the rise

    INDEPENDENCE — Grayson County students made significant jumps in Virginia Standards of Learning scores this year, leaving all but one school fully accredited.

    According to preliminary numbers released at the school board meeting July 14, Grayson County will place three more schools — Baywood Elementary, Providence Elementary and Mount Rogers Combined School — on the fully accredited list.

  • 'Found' money wasn't missing

    HILLSVILLE — Carroll officials are accounting for the differences between a recently released audit report, which showed a fund balance of $10.5 million, and what the treasurer’s report showed.

    The differences are procedural and technical, Supervisors’ Chairman Sam Dickson said in remarks at the outset of the regular July meeting Monday. The county also issued a press release about the audit.

  • 6-year-old dies after near-drowning

    MOUNT AIRY, N.C. — A six-year-old Hillsville, Va., boy died July 13 after an incident at a pool at Beechnut Park in Mount Airy the day before.

    The boy was identified as Mikle Eugene Dixon Jr., said Surry County Emergency Medical Services Director John Shelton.

    EMS received an emergency call at about 11:20 a.m. on July 12 that a young boy was unresponsive at Beechnut Park.

    Dixon apparently had been wearing a floatation device, but took it off, Shelton said. He went underwater after trying to jump into another floatation device.

  • Dove trial date set in Grayson

    INDEPENDENCE — A trial date for a Galax man charged with seven felony counts of taking indecent liberties with a child has been set for Nov. 20 at 9 a.m. in Grayson Circuit Court.

    In July 2007, a Grayson grand jury indicted David Dove, 47, of Cherry Street in Galax, with the seven felony counts.

    A capias was issued for Dove’s arrest that same month and he made his first appearance before Grayson Circuit Court Judge Brett Geisler on Aug. 3, 2007.