Breaking Local News
State regulators plan to conduct more water tests near the Lochgelly injection well in Fayette County that pumps oil and gas drilling waste underground. The Department of Environmental Protection wants to determine whether the well is discharging waste into Wolf Creek. The Register-Herald reports that water samples taken by the Plateau Action Network and a citizen show elevated levels of chloride and other substances consistent with drilling waste. Environmental organizations and some residents say the well poses a threat to health, water resources and property values. The owner says he has operated the well legally.
A special election will be held Nov. 9 that will give voters the choice to support the Kanawha County library in a combined vote with the Kanawha County school levy. If the levy passes, the library would receive $2.9 million in the 2014-15 fiscal year, and higher amounts in following years. The library decided to cancel the West Virginia Book Festival after the state Supreme Court ruled in February that the Kanawha County school board wasn't obligated to pay the library each year. That amounted to a loss of about $3 million -- 40 percent of the library's total budget. This week, the library approved its new budget, with $1 million cut out.
Two men in Dunbar are facing charges for operating or attempting to operate a meth lab. Dunbar police arrested Johnie Mason IV and Jason Edward McClanahan last night after tips came in about suspicious activity in a camper. Police were able to make a traffic stop after learning the license plate was registered to a different vehicle.
The National Park Service plans to begin work this summer on seven new hiking and biking trails in the New River Gorge National River. The trails were proposed in the park's general management plan. The park service says in a news release that it determined the trails won't have any significant impact on the park's resources. The new trails will be located in the northern half of the gorge from McCreery to the park's northern boundary. Members of the Boy Scouts of America and other volunteers will help develop the trails.
Charleston will host a state conference aimed at promoting student health and wellness. The KidsStrong Conference will be held Tuesday at the Charleston Civic Center Little Theater. The conference's organizers are the state Department of Education, the state Department of Health and Human Resources, the West Virginia Immunization Network and Marshall University's medical school. The Department of Education says the Touchdown School Award will be presented during the conference. The award recognizes schools that encourage students to eat nutritious foods and to move at least an hour a day.
A Rand man who pleaded guilty last week to first-degree murder will spend the rest of his life behind bars. 20-year old Brent Burdette has received a life sentence in the shooting death of 21-year-old William Cordle III last July. The sentence came as part of a plea agreement that makes him eligible to apply for parole after serving 15 years, minus the 333 days he has served since his arrest. The trial had been scheduled to start Monday, but the plea deal circumvented the trial. Cordle was a server at Buffalo Wild Wings, and prosecutors say he died from a single blast from a sawed-off 20-gauge shotgun.
A lawsuit alleges a West Virginia doctor ignored a woman's wishes to stop an abortion procedure and botched the procedure by leaving the fetus' head in her uterus. The Family Policy Council of West Virginia, an evangelical Christian group, said Monday the lawsuit was filed on behalf of Itai Gravely against the Women's Health Center of West Virginia in Charleston and Dr. Rodney Stephens. The Kanawha County Circuit Court lawsuit said Gravely was given a sedative but wanted to stop the April 2012 procedure because she was in severe pain. It said Stephens ignored her instructions and had her physically restrained. The pregnancy was near the end of the first trimester. A subsequent exam at a hospital revealed the fetus' head in her uterus, the lawsuit said.
A woman who had lost a job was apparently suicidal led police on a brief chase over the weekend. Dean's Pawn Shop on Route 60 in St. Albans called police Saturday afternoon, and the woman reportedly tried to jump over the counter to grab a gun after the clerk refused to sell her one. She eventually drove off and was seen at another gun store, and she led officers on a chase down a dead end street, according to a press release. Eventually, police had to use a tazer on her to take her into custody.
Those 18 and under can get free meals in Charleston this week as part of a federal program. Those under 18 and in lower-income areas continue to receive free, nutritious meals during the summer at schools, churches, pools, parks, housing complexes and summer camps. There is a kickoff event planned for today at 11:00 a.m. Monday at the Boys and Girls Club in Charleston, and the free meals will be passed out during the week for the next several weeks.
Boone County miners are still dealing with the news of Friday's pending layoffs. 160 mine employees will be laid off from Independence Coal and Spartan Mining, and Boone County Commissioners were notified Friday. The mines are owned by Alpha Natural Resources. The layoffs are expected to start at the beginning of August, and company leaders will meet with employees this week to talk about severance pay and benefits if they lose their jobs. The layoffs will come in waves the first two weeks of August.