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Some say new regulations proposed by the State Fire Commission would be too expensive for volunteer fire departments, and could hurt their ability to function. The proposed rules would force adoption of more than 90 standards and require stricter training and certification processes. Late last week the Charleston Civic Center hsoted a forum for concerned volunteer firefighters to speak out against the proposed changes. The state code is not something that can be ignored. Each violation is a misdemeanor crime that costs $100 per infraction per day.
If you have good photos of wildflowers, those could end up in a new state calendar. The latest "Roadsides in Bloom" calendar is being put together now, and the state departments of Environmental Protection and Transportation are sponsoring. Photos should be submitted by October 1, and then judges will pick 12 for the calendar. The grand prize winner will get the front cover.
The rules of the contest are available through the Adopt-a-Highway program.
West Virginia's most popular small game animal is the squirrel, and hunters will have the chance to target them beginning September 8. The West Virginia Division of Natural Resources announced this is the year the season is opening earlier. Mild weather conditions in September and longer days make hunting condtions prime. The daily bag limit will remain at six and the possession limit at 24. The season ends Jan. 31.
A heads up for drivers in Charleston. In South Hills this week, Louden Heights Road from the South Side Bridge to Grosscup Road will be closed. Crews will be paving the street Tuesday and Wednesday from 6:30 p.m. until 6:30 a.m. Drivers druing that time will be detoured onto Bridge Road. Ferry Street from the South Side Bridge to MacCorkle Avenue will also get new asphalt this week. Crews are scheduled to start working that section today, and it will probably take until Thursday, with most of the work done overnight. In some cases the roads will be closed, and in some cases traffic will be down to one lane. It's best to avoid those areas all together.
A Putnam County man died in a traffic accident over the weekend. Police say 36-year old Gary Alan Massey of Hurricane was headed south on WV 62 Saturday morning when he apparently went off the road and hit a utility pole and was ejected. Paramedics took him to the hospital, where he was pronounced dead. The Putnam County Sheriff's office is still investigating.
Because transactions have declined and business is down, the Members Choice WV Federal Credit Union will close it's branch office in the Charleston Newspapers building. The August Press Scene newsletter reminds us that the Charleston Newspapers Federal Credit Union voluntarily merged into Members Choice WV Federal Credit Union last year. The closure becomes effective September 28.
A man from Hollywood, CA has been indicted in Charleston after an extortion attempt. 25-year old Vivek Shah was indicted Thursday by a federal grand jury, stemming from an incident where he's accused of sending a prominent West Virginian a letter threatening to kill his relatives if he didn’t wire money to an offshore bank account. Investigators say Shah targeted five wealthy people in all, but in this case Christopher Cline of Beckley was the victim. He owns Foresight Reserves. If Shah is convicted on all counts, he faces up to 40 years in prison.
The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration is investigating the June death of a worker at the AC and S Inc. chemical plant in Nitro. The Nitro city council talked more about the incident this week, and learned a man inhaled dangerous gases on the job June 25th and died several days later. The worker was sandblasting at the time and had a breathing mask on, so OSHA is trying to determine whether something malfunctioned with the mask or if there was some other medical emergency that led to his collapse. Any citations would come from OSHA within the next six months.
For some students, heading back to school not only means a brand new year, it means a brand new school. As students at Buffalo High School headed back to class in Putnam County, they got to enjoy a brand new building. The new high school includes upgrades like a bigger gym, new auditorium, and larger classrooms. The new school building replaces one that was about fifty years old.
Police continue to investigate a murder-suicide in Hurricane. It happened Wednesday night around 10pm at a home along Kelly's Cove, and police say 41-year old Christopher Kinder stabbed his girlfriend, then shot himself. 33-year-old Katherine "Kate" Taylor died. The couple had 1-year old daughter, who was home at the time, who is now with another relative. There are reports that police had responded to domestic violence calls at the home in the past.