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Kristen Vieweg is an attorney who has worked in Kanawha County Magistrate Court for the past five years, and officially took over the slot vacated for by Carol Fouty yesterday. Fouty resigned Aug. 3 after 26 years. Fouty faces ethics violations, and submitted a resignation last week citing health reasons and a desire to spend more time with family. Vieweg has been sworn in as a new magistrate and will fill the rest of Fouty’s term - five months.
A new report from the Institute for a Competitive Workforce gives a failing grade to West Virginia colleges and universities. Mountain State was one of only four in the nation that received an "F" for not meeting the standards employers demand from four-year institutions. Two-year colleges didn't do a lot better, receiving "D's." College graduates in West Virginia who receive a bachelor's degree earn just $12,700 more annually than those who just graduate from high school. And the report shows college graduates here have an unemployment rate that is a mere two points better than those high school graduates. The West Virginia Legislature has already increased its oversight of higher education with a new bill passed in the 2012 session.
Those without power should have it back soon if they do not already. Frontier Communications said yesterday at noon power would be restored within thirty hours, or 6pm tonight. As many as 3,000 customers from Bigley Avenue to the Mink Shoals area lost service Wednesday after a contractor involved in a construction project at Spring and Bullitt streets severed two underground cables, according to a news release from the company. Repair crews are working around the clock to fix the problem.
No charges will be filed after a 75-woman pumping gas was struck and killed in Charleston Wednesday morning. Joyce Kendall was putting gas in her car at the 7-11 at 4929 MacCorkle Avenue. She dropped the gas cap and was reaching down to pick it up, when another driver didn't see her and clipped her with his back tire, according to Charleston police. Kendall was rushed to the hospital, but died from her injuries. It's still under investigation, but appears to be a tragic accident.
An accused murder attempts suicide in jail. Officials at the South Central Regional Jail say Charles March tried to jump off the second tier of a cell block Wednesday morning, and although his injuries turned out to be non life threatening it was a suicide attempt. March is accused of killing his co-worker, Kathy Goble in 2010 and burying her remains in his yard. March is scheduled to be arraigned next week.
Information sessions continue at the Beckley campus of Mountain State University this week. Mountain State loses accreditation December 31 and the University of Charleston takes over the Beckley and Martinsburg campuses. UC representatives are in Beckley this week to help students with the transition. Mountain State students are expected to continue with their professors this fall, and a UC representative told the Daily Mail after that, UC will use the Mountain State course material and add UC professors. Beyond next spring, it's unclear what Mountain State courses will continue.
City leaders in Beckley will decide later this month whether a residential property will be rezoned. Rep. Nick Rahall wants Beckley officials to allow him to subdivide the property he owns and lease part of it to a commercial business. Two lots rezoned from a one-family district to a general commercial district and Enterprise Rent-A-Car would build a new office there. The Register-Herald says the Beckley Planning Commission approved Rahall's request Tuesday and recommended it to City Council, which hold a public hearing Aug. 28 and then make a final decision.
Sissonville is getting a new Senior Center, and the grand opening will be held this Saturday at 10am at Aldersgate United Methodist Church. The center will be open from 10am to 2pm beginning next week in the Multipurpose Community Center at Aldersgate United Methodist. The center becomes the permanent location for Kanawha Valley Senior Services and the Putnam Aging Nutrition Program in the Sissonville area.
Kanawha County magistrate Carol Fouty was absent from the Judicial Hearing Board meeting Wednesday, but an agreement was presented on her behalf that promises she will not seek public office in November, and she'll reimburse the state for the costs associated with its investigation into her misconduct, which will total near $6300. The letter presented by her attorney also says she would resign from office, which she did last week. The agreement must be accepted by the board and then by the Supreme Court.
The state Election Commission on Wednesday set an emergency meeting date for Aug. 15, thinking that the Kanawha County Republican Executive Committee will submit a request to replace former magistrate Carol Fouty on the November ballot. August 20th is the deadline for vacancies to be filled on the general election ballot. Fouty, who has been suspended without pay since April after the Judicial Investigation Commission charged her with violating the magistrate's ethics code. She resigned last Friday, and her attorney submitted an agreement to the Judicial Hearing Board yesterday that states she'll not seek election this fall.