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Organizers say a new initiative will give students in McDowell County access to preventive dental services. Reconnecting McDowell says the pilot program will begin with kindergarten and pre-K students in the 2015-2016 school year. Older students will be enrolled in the following three school years. Students who say they haven't had an oral examination by the beginning of the school year will get virtual x-rays, and a mobile dental van or a regional dental provider will provide follow-up care.
Appalachian Power is shutting down its Kanawha River Plant in Glasgow, along with a plant in Mason County and another in Marshall County. WCHS TV reports it's part of Appalachian Power's long-range plan to abide by tougher air-quality regulations. There are concerns over the reliability of the grid with three power plants shutting down, but preparations have been in the works since 2011, and the company says it has reinforced the transmission infrastructure. The 150 employees that have been affected by the closures have all been offered either jobs at other Appalachian Power facilities, severance packages or retirement.
West Virginia's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate rose two-tenths of a percentage point to 6.1 percent in February. WorkForce West Virginia says the number of unemployed state residents increased by 1,600 last month.
Among the employment losses last month were 900 in mining and logging and 600 in leisure and hospitality. Employment gains in February included 400 in trade, transportation and utilities. Nationally, the unemployment rate fell two-tenths of a percentage point to 5.5 percent in February.
Former Freedom Industries owner Charles Herzing entered a guilty plea at a hearing Monday in federal court in Charleston to causing an unlawful discharge of a coal-cleaning agent into the Elk River. Each faces up to a year in prison when sentenced June 22. Former owner William Tis also pleaded guilty Monday in a separate hearing. Plea hearings are scheduled Wednesday for Freedom environmental consultant Robert Reynolds and tank farm plant manager Michael Burdette, and on March 23 for the company itself. All are charged with federal Clean Water Act violations and are expected to plead guilty.
Timothy Coleman of Cross Lanes is facing charges after deputies say he stabbed his father after an argument over a locked door. Coleman couldn't get into the house and forced his way in, and his 77-year old father suffered cuts on his face and hands after a fight in the front yard. Coleman also suffered injuries, and has been charged with malicious wounding.
AT&T says it has upgraded its wireless and wired networks in West Virginia to improve reliability, coverage, speed and performance. The company said Monday in a news release that it invested nearly $300 million in upgrades between 2012 and 2014. The projects included construction of 27 cell sites, 217 wireless network upgrades, and expansion of network and mobile Internet capacity. AT&T says the upgrades are part of its Project Velocity IP investment plan.
A former owner of Freedom Industries has pleaded guilty to charges stemming from last year's chemical spill in Charleston. William Tis entered the plea on Monday in federal court in Charleston to federal Clean Water Act violations. Tis faces up to a year in prison when sentenced June 22. Plea hearings are scheduled Wednesday for Freedom environmental consultant Robert Reynolds and tank farm plant manager Michael Burdette, and on March 23 for the company itself. All are charged with federal Clean Water Act violations and are expected to plead guilty. Ex-Freedom owner Dennis Farrell and former President Gary Southern face trial later this year on spill-related charges.
Two former executives at Freedom Industries are due in court for plea hearings today on charges stemming from last year's chemical spill in Charleston. Ex-Freedom owners Charles Herzing and William Tis will enter pleas today, and plea hearings also are scheduled on Wednesday for Freedom environmental consultant Robert Reynolds and tank farm plant manager Michael Burdette and on March 23 for the company itself. All are charged with federal Clean Water Act violations and are expected to plead guilty.
While confident having been there before, Varun Kukkillaya nervously spelled the word "requisite" on Saturday to become the 2015 Gazette-Mail Regional Spelling Bee champion for the second year in a row. The Charleston Daily Mail reports the 14-year-old John Adams Middle eighth grader will now advance to the Scripps National Spelling Bee in Washington, D.C. Varun will now advance to the Scripps National Spelling Bee, taking place May 26-28.
A woman called 911 Sunday to say she was being held against her will by a man named Robert Bonds of the Cabin Creek area. The Kanawha County Sheriff's office says the victim, Anessia Hicks was able to get away and meet with deputies, and said Bonds had used a stun gun on her and that he had physically assaulted her with other items inside their home. Deputies had reason to believe he might have a gun inside so the SWAT team responded, and after warrants were issued the SWAT team went inside. They found Bonds there and he was taken into custody without incident. Once in custody he complained of chest pain and was taken to the hospital to be checked out, and from there he was to appear before a magistrate or be taken to the South Central Regional Jail.