Breaking Local News
Democratic Senator Jay Rockefeller laid out some targeted thoughts on the coal industry yesterday. Rockefeller called for an end to "scare tactics" by coal companies from the U.S. Senate floor and announced he'll oppose a Republican resolution seeking to block the Obama administration's rules to curb mercury and other toxic air emissions from coal-fired power plants. Rockefeller said that concerns about coal's pollution and its impacts on global warming are real, and trying to block new regulations is a waste of time and resources.
Governor Earl Ray Tomblin has announced a Japanese auto maker has plans to expand its West Virginia truck assembly plant. The expansion by Hino Motors manufacturing would add 20 jobs and pump $3 million into the economy. U.S. Sens. Jay Rockefeller and Joe Manchin were on hand for the announcement since they helped bring Hino to West Virginia. Earlier this month the Governor was on a 10-day trade mission to Japan, and said then he hopes to have more announcements about Japanese companies setting up shop and expanding in West Virginia.
Kanawha County leaders are moving closer to a decision on whether to move the county recylcing center or leave it where it is. The recycling center sits now on Slack Street, and officials are considering moving that to a warehouse in Sissonville. The Slack Street building is a century old and is in a state of disrepair. A final decision could come by the end of the month.
Governor Earl Ray Tomblin has extended the tax relief to the counties hardest hit by flooding in February and March. That includes Lincoln, Logan, and Wayne counties, and they'll receive the extension until July 14. There are eleven counties affected in all, and residents in some of those counties are still not back in their homes. They'll have some relief from the state, since the extension suspends sales tax on housing supplies for those affected residents. The West Virginia State Tax Department has more information.
27-year old Larry Wayne Conley of Sissonville was killed Monday night when the mini-bike he was driving hit a truck head-on. A news release from the Kanawha County Sheriff's office says Conley was driving on the wrong side of Derricks Creek Road and going too fast for the area when the accident happened. A passenger on Conley's bike was thrown from the vehicle and was taken to the hospital with serious injuries. Based on the preliminary investigation, deputies say it doesn't appear the driver could have avoided the accident.
Some who live on Charleston's west side have concerns about a construction project that's sending smoke their way and causing traffic congestion. It's happening in the area of Edgewood Drive and Wood Road where the site preparations are underway for a new school. Brush and trees are being burned to clear the area for the foundation, and some worry it's a health issue. There were also concerns about a fire that burned through the night last weekend, which would be a violation of the permit, but the Department of Environmental Protection is said to have given verbal approval. The school board encourages anyone with a complaint to come forward.
Some locals may be headed to the Olympics. 17-year old Nathan Carr and his sister, 15-year old Morgan Carr , qualified for the US Olympic trials in swimming. Both attend Charleston Catholic High School and accomplished the feat together last Friday in Nashville. They'll compete in the Olympic trials in Omaha, Nebraska June 25 through July 2. At age 15, Morgan is the youngest Olympic qualifier in West Virginia history. She qualified in the 200 meter butterfly. Big brother Nathan makes it in the 200 meter breaststroke.
Two people in Nitro have entered guilty pleas to charges that they devised a scheme to get hundreds of thousands of dollars from American Electric Power. 42-year-old Mark Ingram and 32-year-old Crystal Ingram pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud in a case where they're accused of submitting false power surge damage claims. A claims adjustor pleaded guilty in April to helping in the process. Sentencing for the Ingrams is set for September 18.
The case against a former candidate for West Virginia Attorney General and the U.S. Senate is headed to a grand jury. Hiram Lewis had his preliminary hearing yesterday after a shooting last week where he was charged with wanton endangerment. Stephen Bogart was shot in the leg after working his way into Lewis' home, but Bogart claimed to live there too. The magistrate yesterday found probable cause to send the case to a Clay County grand jury, which meets next in July.
Officials with Putnam County schools have been analyzing the number of graduates that go on to college, and while the numbers aren't bad, Putnam county schools want more students to seek higher education. This fall, Putnam county students will see a greater emphasis on work ethic and communication skills, and that'll count toward the students' grades. Academics will still have the greatest emphasis, but schools will be able to target life skills outside of that as well, like tardiness.