Breaking Local News

Appalachian Power assesses damage

Appalachian Power says it could be as late as this Friday, July 6 before power is completely restored, although the general consensus seems to be it will be earlier than that. In a press release, the company said crews have been out most of the weekend assessing damage to its electrical facilities. More than 50 substations were knocked out and more than 1500 tree removal workers, damage assessment specialists, company line mechanics and outside line contractors have been called in. All power companies in West Virginia are affected, not just AEP, since 85 percent of the state lost power with the storms. Since local power companies can't rely on others across the state for help, the help may come from Louisiana, Oklahoma and Texas.

Power companies don't estimate quick restoration

Appalachian Power says it could be as late as this Friday, July 6 before power is completely restored, although the general consensus seems to be it will be earlier than that. In a press release, the company lists the anticipated restoration date for Kanawha County as July 6th, with more than 75,000 people without power. The company estimates Lincoln County could have power restored by July 3, Logan County by July 5, and Putnam County by July 6. All power companies in West Virginia are affected, not just AEP, since 85 percent of the state lost power with the storms. Since local power companies can't rely on others across the state for help, the help may come from Louisiana, Oklahoma and Texas.

New housing unit considered, before West Side council

The Charleston-Kanawha Housing Authority has a proposal on the table for a seven-building, 28-unit housing complex along Washington Street West. That's near two existing public housing projects, and some worry the new project would only segragate a portion of the population that struggles financially and close it off to some extent. The agency may apply for tax credits by the end of July, and construction could be finished by the end of 2013. It's before the West Side City Council now.

Charleston man injured in plane crash

A Charleston man is in the hospital after a small plane crash in Ohio. 51-year old Charles W. Stevens of Charleston was a passenger in the small plane that went down in Holmes County with engine trouble. The plane crash landed in a field. Stevens is said to be in serious condition in intensive care at the hospital. 60-year old Floyd Pierson of Milton was the pilot, and is also in serious condition. The plane was apparently on its way to Charleston when it went down.

Youtube video shows Putnam County judge's outburst

A Putnam County family law judge is the subject of a youtube video that surfaced this week. Judge William Watkins is seen screaming and yelling at preacher Arthur Hage and threatened him with jail. Hage was in court for a divorce hearing that involved the sale of their home. Watkins accused Hage of leaking a picture of his home to a blogger. Hage denies knowing the blogger. Judge Watkins has recused himself from the case, and Hage says he wants Watkins removed from the bench.

Attorney keeps his license

Hiram Lewis can still practice law. The former US Senate and Attorney General candidate is accused of shooting Stephen Bogart earlier this month, and while Lewis works his way through his own court case, the State Supreme Court has withdrawn their petition to suspend Lewis' law license. Lewis says Bogart was breaking into his home at the time of the shooting. Bogart says he lived there. At this point, Lewis can still practice law, but the Office of Disciplinary Counsel continues their investigation.

Hurricane City Council member faces accusations

A member of the Hurricane City Council faces accusations that he solicited a minor. 31-year old Scott Cunningham was arrested Wednesday and charged with two felony counts of soliciting a minor via computer. Reports say sexually explicit text messages were sent to a 13-year old girl whom he was acquanited with. Cunningham resigned from the city council shortly after his arrest, and is free on bond.vvCunningham was elected to Hurricane City Council in June 2011 as a member of the Citizens Party.

High temps this weekend bring caution

The National Weather Service says not to expect any break in the heat this weekend. Kanawha County Emergency Management sends the reminder to avoid strenuous activity in the heat and make sure you drink lots of water. If you start feeling even a little bit bad, get out of the heat right away.

Lawsuit filed over 2011 city election

A lawsuit has been filed against Charleston government leaders and two newspapers in Kanawha County over the 2011 city election. The lawsuit was filed in US District court by former mayoral candidate Janet Thompson, claiming the election was unfair. She contends the machine that was supposed to add up and confirm the ballots was not used, which made the outcome unofficial. The suit also says she's suffered humilation and emotional distress, aggravation, inconvenience, and has lost her belief and trust in democray. Numerous local leaders are named in the suit, includig Kanawha County Commissioners Kent Carper, Dave Harper, and Hoppy Shores. It also names the county commission on the whole, plus the county clerk's office and the city of Charleston.

More West Virginia students are in Advanced Placement classes now

West Virginia was recognized this week for getting more students into the Advanced Placement Program. State education officials received the 2012 AP Beacon Award this week in Charleston. An effort that started two years ago seems to be paying off, getting more students involved in the classes the will give them a boost in college with a targeted focus on low income and minority students. Nine percent of students in West Virginia were part of Advanced Placement classes ten years ago, and last year the rate had surpassed twenty percent.

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