Breaking Local News
The Capitol Building Commission gave it's approval to renovation plans at the Capitol Complex Building 3. Contractor bids back in 2011 came in about $6 million over the $27 million budget so plans were scaled back, and these were the revised plans getting approval. The Charleston Gazette reports the new plans eliminated things like conference rooms with floor-to-ceiling teleconferencing screens. The plans will keep some of the historical elements of the current design. The next step is for the project to go out to bid, and there's no firm date for that yet.
Both lanes of I-64 were shut down last night in Charleston because of an accident. A tractor trailer lost control and hit a car near the Charleston Civic Center, according to dispatchers. There were no serious injuries, but the driver of the tractor trailer was taken to the hospital as a precaution.
A Putnam County woman wasn't arrested, but she was stopped and questioned after she tried to take a loaded handgun onto a flight at Yeager Airport Wednesday morning. The federal Transportation Security Administration said the woman was from Scott Depot and had a .380 caliber semi-automatic handgun loaded with seven rounds, including one in the chamber. A screener found the gun in via x-ray as the bag was passing through on the conveyor belt. The gun was confiscated, but the woman wasn't arrested. She did miss her flight to Atlanta.
A St. Albans woman got a lengthy prison sentence Wednesday after pleading guilty to killing her mother. 36-year old Jessica Lee Woods was sentenced to up to 70 years in prison for strangling her mother to death and then hiding her body in the shed of her home on West Main Street. Woods also used her mother's bank card to steal money. She told judge Duke Bloom that she killed her mother February 10th and hid the body in the shed. She admitted to telling Shawn Legg what she had done. He was her boyfriend at the time. Legg pleaded guilty to being an accessory after the fact and was sentenced in November to one to three years in prison.
The U.S. Department of Labor says natural gas drilling contractors have agreed to pay nearly $4.5 million in back wages to 5,310 natural gas workers in Pennsylvania and West Virginia. The department says an investigation found significant violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act, including improper payment of overtime. The Department of Labor says the initiative is now looking at potential violations in other parts of the country.
The Kanawha County Sheriff’s Office in conjunction with the Governor’s Highway Safety Program has plans for a high visibility sobriety checkpoint on Friday from 9:00 p.m. to 2:00 a.m. on W.V. Rt. 21 (Sissonville Drive) near Charleston. The sheriff's office says it has a zero tolerance policy when it comes to impaired driving, and randomly conducts the check points.
The West Virginia Governor’s Highway Safety Program and Mobile Life Solutions have created two free apps to help fight drinking and driving and distracted driving. The first app is called “Driver Sober West Virginia” and is available at http://www.DriverSoberWV.com. The other is called “TextLimit” and is available at http://www.textlimit.com. The app is free for one year with the coupon code NOTEXTWV.
The Kanawha County Sheriff’s Office conducted a warrant sweep on Tuesday, with help from the U.S. Marshal’s Service’s CUFFED Task Force. Fifteen people were arrested on warrants for failure to pay child support, domestic assault and battery, violation of a protective order, and intimidation of a public official. This warrant sweep focused primarily on domestic violence and family court related offenses.
State regulators have scheduled a public hearing on a company's application to renew permits for two underground injection wells in Fayette County. Danny E. Webb Construction Inc. operates the wells at a facility near Lochgelly. The wells pump oil and gas drilling waste underground. The Department of Environmental Protection says it will host a public hearing on the company's permit renewal applications on Jan. 7 at Oak Hill High School and they'll take witten public comments through Jan. 17. Environmental organizations and some residents have said the company has a history of violations and the wells pose a threat to health, water resources and property values. Webb has said he operated the wells legally.
A former West Virginia lawmaker is being tapped to become the 22nd clerk of the House of Delegates. In January, Steve Harrison is set to replace Greg Gray, who has been House clerk since 1996 and is the third-longest serving House clerk in state history. Harrison served in the House from 1993-2002 and served one term in the Senate from 2003-06. The Charleston Gazette reports that Harrison is leaving his position as an executive at Poca Valley Bank at the end of the year, ending an 18-year career there.
Drivers beware...The West Virginia State Police is increasing patrols on U.S. 119 in four counties. The targeted enforcement, called Operation 119, began Friday and will continue through Dec. 31. State police say troopers in Boone, Lincoln, Logan and Mingo counties will patrol the highway during the morning and evening rush hours looking for aggressive driving and speeding violations, along with distracted drivers.