Breaking Local News
West Virginia has launched the third phase of a project incorporating state agencies under one computer system. The new system, called wvOASIS, will allow agencies to use one system to manage accounts, personnel, and assets. The third phase launched on Tuesday involves financial, procurement, and treasury applications. Governor Tomblin says in a news release that wvOASIS will replace nearly 100 administrative systems. There is a help desk set up to help state employees and vendors learn to use the new system.
A big swim competition starts today at the University of Charleston. More than 500 swimmers are scheduled to compete in the City National Bank Kanawha Valley Summer League Swimmig Championships starting today. Cross Lanes is a heavy favorite to win as it defends its title. The swimmers compete in the evening for the next three days, and the competition starts at 9:30am Saturday on the final day.
A Kanawha County strip mine has been approved and the Keystone strip mine is going up on a mountaintop right next to the Kanawha State Forest. But not without controversy. Nieghbors in the Loudendale area and environmentalists voiced concerns last night at a public meeting, and many pushed to get the mine's permit pulled. WCHS TV reports there is an appeals hearing with the surface mine board scheduled next month. A lawsuit is also in the works.
The Labor Department's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has fined Freedom Industries for two violations. The federal agency fined Freedom $7,000 for keeping storage tanks containing crude MCHM behind a diked wall that was not liquid tight. On Jan. 9, roughly 10,000 gallons of MCHM leaked from one of the tanks and through the riverside diked wall and resulted in the water crisis. OSHA also fined Freedom Industries $4,000 for failing to have standard railings on an elevated platform.
CVS Pharmacy is no longer selling some cold medications that contain pseudoephedrine at its stores in West Virginia. The sales ban applies to medications that have pseudoephedrine as their only active ingredient. Pseudoephedrine also is used to illegally manufacture meth. CVS spokesman Mike DeAngelis tells the Charleston Gazette that the sales ban also is in effect at 40 stores in neighboring states that are within 15 miles of the West Virginia border. There are 50 stores in West Virginia. Ride Aid and Fruth Pharmacy stopped selling single-ingredient pseudoephedrine medications in West Virginia last year.
Democrat Nick Casey raised $332,000 last quarter and has $873,000 in the bank for his West Virginia congressional bid against Republican Alex Mooney. Casey also announced Monday he has raised more than $1.2 million throughout the election cycle. Mooney's campaign did not immediately have updated numbers for April through June. They are due July 15. Casey is the former West Virginia Democratic Party chairman. In Maryland, Mooney served as state Republican Party chairman and as a state senator. This is the seat vacated by Republican Congresswoman Shelley Moore Capito as she runs for U.S. Senate.
Permitted gun owners now have another option. West Virginia has entered into a concealed handgun reciprocity agreement with Nebraska. West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey made the announcement Monday. Under the agreement, each state will honor a valid concealed carry permit issued by the other. West Virginia now has full reciprocity agreements with 31 states. Seven states have been added since July 2013. Five additional states honor West Virginia permits, but concealed carry licenses issued by those states are not currently recognized by West Virginia.
The investigation is on after a baby's body was found and the parents are facing charges. State police are investigating after the infant's body was found buried in the George Washington National Forest in Hardy County. State police spokesman Lt. Michael Baylous says the infant's parents were arrested Saturday in Morgantown, and troopers found the baby in the woods after that. The parents, Joseph Christy and Summer McDaniel, have been charged with child neglect and may face more charges after admitting to the burial. No word yet on a motive or cause of death for the baby.
Former Mingo County prosecutor Michael Sparks is scheduled to be sentenced today after admitting his role in a corruption case. The sentencing has been delayed four times. Former Circuit Judge Michael Thornsbury, Sparks, and former county commissioner David Baisden all admitted to playing part in a plot to deprive a man of his constitutional rights to protect the late sheriff, Eugene Crum, who was accused of buying drugs from him. Prosecutors say Sparks' role wasn't as significant as the others, and his cooperation in the investigation is being taken into account. Sparks has been charged with misdemeanor deprivation of rights, and he faces up to one year in prison.
West Virginia organized labor has created a new independent fundraising arm ahead of the November general election. According to a filing with the Federal Election Commission, the West Virginia AFL-CIO created the new federal political action committee "Honest West Virginians" in late June. AFL-CIO treasurer Josh Sword told the Charleston Daily Mail that the group felt it needed to fight the flow of outside money affecting federal elections in West Virginia. Sword says the amount of money "Honest West Virginians" raises will dictate how active the PAC is and the races it will focus on before the 2014 election.