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If you have plans to drive this Thanksgiving, you'll have a new road to use. Another section of Corridor H in West Virginia is expected to open by Thanksgiving. Corridor H coordinator Tommy Collins tells The Exponent Telegram that the 1.5-mile segment is near the connector to W.Va. Route 42 and W.Va. Route 93 in the Mount Storm area. Another 4-mile section could open by the end of the year, but it could be early spring because of winter weather. Overall the Corridor H construction is ahead of schedule. When it is completed, it will connect Interstate 79 near Weston with the junction of Interstates 81 and 66 in Front Royal, Virginia.
Kanawha County Delegate and West Virginia Senate candidate Doug Skaff issued a statement over the weekend in response to his DUI arrest Friday night in Monongalia County. Skaff said he was stopped by a Monongalia County deputy Friday night who believed he was intoxicated, and Skaff said he had consumed a couple of drinks earlier in the evening. He took a blood test for alcohol content and it takes some time for the deputies to get those results, but Skaff said regardless of the outcome of the test he should have had a designated driver, and not having one was a mistake. Skaff says he is solely responsible for his actions and will work to rebuild trust. Skaff also apologized to his family, friends and community members who have put their faith in him.
There were some disappointed football players and angry parents over the weekend when a high school football game was called off because no referees showed up for the game. The Charleston Gazette reports the game in Beckley was Woodrow Wilson's homecoming game against the top-ranked team in the state, Capital. In other words, it was a big game. The game was initially delayed and Woodrow Wilson performed its homecoming festivities, but after about an hour the game was canceled and hundreds of fans lined up for refunds.
Woodrow Wilson coach John Lilly says the Mountain State Athletic Conference failed to schedule the referees.
The Freedom Industries site is seeing testing right now, but it's not on the water after the chemical spill and water crisis back in January. It's air monitoring. The tanks are gone after orders required them to be removed, but the dirt contaminated with MCHM remains. WSAZ TV reports in the coming weeks, agencies will begin the process to remove it. The air monitoring machines will make sure the level of MCHM in the air stays below what the EPA says is a safe level - 10 parts-per-billion.
A Jackson County man is facing several charges after he allegedly hit a St. Albans woman in the head with a piece of wood. 25-year old James Pauley Jr. of Kenna, is charged with malicious wounding, burglary and conspiracy to commit a felony. St. Albans police were called to a home on Cody Street Wednesday night and the victim said she was hit with the piece of wood. She complained head and back pain. Wtnesses backed up the victim's statement. Pauley has been in South Central Regional Jail.
Southwestern Energy will spend about $5.38 billion to acquire drilling assets in West Virginia and southwest Pennsylvania now owned by Chesapeake Energy. The acquisition includes 256 operated and producing horizontal wells in the Marcellus and Utica shale regions, and an additional 179 non-operated or non-producing wells in the same areas. Southwestern will also assume part of the transportation and processing capacity commitments from Chesapeake Energy once the deal is finalized.
The West Virginia Racing Commission says it needs the authority to set the number of live racing days at the state's tracks. The Charleston Gazette reports that the commission approved a resolution this week to seek legislation giving it the authority. The resolution aims to reviatlize the state's thoroughbred and greyhound racing industry. Tracks are struggling to meet the number of living racing days mandated by state law. Commissioners approved requests on Wednesday to cancel seven horse racing days at Hollywood Casino in Charles Town in November and December and December's horse races at Mountaineer Casino, Racetrack & Resort in Chester. The tracks sought the cuts because of a lack of purse funds.
West Virginia service members and first responders will be honored later this year by Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin and first lady Joanne Jaeger Tomblin. They are asking state residents to submit photos of service members and first responders for recognition trees that will be displayed in the governor's reception room during the holiday season. Submit your photos by Nov. 14. They should be mailed to the West Virginia Governor's Mansion, attention Tina Amburgey. The address is 1716 Kanawha Blvd. East, Charleston, W.Va. 25305. Photos will not be returned, so photo copies should be submitted.
Senate President Jeff Kessler's office is looking into the state Public Service Commission's decision to approve higher natural gas prices. Kessler tells The Parkersburg News and Sentinel that he'll review rate increases for Mountaineer Gas and Peoples Gas customers. The Public Service Commission announced the rate hikes in a news release last week. They take effect Nov. 1. The commission says Hope Gas customers will see a rate decrease, however. Mountaineer Gas says it will make no profit off the increased purchase price. Since there is ample supply of natural gas, Kessler questioned how the increases make sense under the basic law of supply and demand. Officials say gas rates have dropped for eight straight years.
Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin has named a new director of policy for the governor’s office. It's Lawrence J. Malone, and the Governor says his first day will be Oct. 27. Malone has operated his own communications and marking consulting firm, Malone Consulting Services. Other positions he's held include communications director for the West Virginia Chamber of Commerce, executive director of the West Virginia Oil & Natural Gas Association, along with work in healthcare and technology.