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Pseudoephedrine sales in West Virginia are down 30 percent this year compared to the same five-month period in 2013. Data from the NPLEx tracking system show pharmacies in West Virginia have sold 145,526 boxes of cold medications containing pseudoephedrine since January. Pharmacies sold 205,113 boxes during the same period last year. And there's a 40 percent decrease in the number of pseudoephedrine purchases that are blocked. Pseudoephedrine is a cold medication ingredient that's used to make meth.
The Clay Center has announced its fall performance schedule. Comedian and talk show host Bill Maher is among those coming to Charleston, and he'll perform stand-up comedy on November 16th. Musicians on the bill this fall include bluesman BB King, classic rockers Three Dog Night, and singers Michael McDonald and Toto, plus former Jethro Tull frontman Ian Anderson. Tickets are on sale at www.claycenter.org.
An American Electric Power subsidiary is asking state regulators to approve a transmission line that the company wants to build in Boone and Raleigh counties. AEP West Virginia Transmission Company, Inc. filed an application for the Bim Tap Project this week with the West Virginia Public Service Commission. The company's filing says the proposed 5.5-mile 138-kilovolt line would replace an existing line on property where Independence Coal Company has mining operations. Independence has asked the company to move the line because it plans to conduct operations in the immediate vicinity. The new line would be located primarily on reclaimed and previously mined land. The project would cost about $6.6 million.
Another round of thunderstorms could be on the way. The National Weather Service issued a Severe Thunderstorm Watch until 9pm today for counties including Boone, Braxton, Calhoun, Clay, Fayette, Kanawha, Nicholas and Roane. The best chance for severe weather seems to be along I-77 and to the east, according to meteorologists.
The West Virginia Supreme Court has approved a fine against a Kanawha County magistrate. Wade Harshbarger admitted to mishandling a domestic violence petition, and sanctions were recommended by the Judicial Investigation Commission. In additions to public censure, Harshbarger faces a $2,000 fine and costs of $3,790 for the investigation. The Charleston Gazette says the judicial investigation commission had accused Harshbarger of not following proper procedures and not giving it a full and fair review, and discussing the petition with police officers who weren't involved in the case. Kanawha County Prosecutor Mark Plants' ex-wife, Allison Plants, petitioned for a domestic violence protective order against him on Feb. 26.
Charleston police looking for a robbery suspect after the Foodland gas station on Spring Street was held up Monday evening. A man wearing a blue hat pulled a revolver style pistol from his pants after walking into the gas station, according to a news release from the Charleston Police Department. He gave the clerk a Go-Mart shopping bag and demanded that he put the whole cash drawer in the bag. The cashier complied, and the suspect left the store with the cash drawer. Spring Street Foodland is offering a cash reward for anyone willing to identify the suspect. If you have information, call Charleston Police.
A three-judge panel in Nicholas County will let the Supreme Court decide on a case involving county commissioners. The panel delayed a decision Tuesday on whether the Nicholas County Commission acted illegally when it hired a county administrator. The Supreme Court is on track to weigh in on the county commissioners’ appeal of a circuit judge’s decision. The circuit judge ruled that the commission’s hiring of the administrator was improper. More than two hundred people signed a petition in opposition of the county commissioners hiring the administrator, claiming there was an open meetings law violation and because the hiring changed the form of government. The petition asked too that the commissioners be removed from office.
West Virginia lawmakers will study 76 wide-ranging topics in committee meetings that lead up to their annual legislative session in January. This year's interim committee topics include a study on the craft beer business, possible commuter rail service and a possible tax break for coal producers selling to in-state buyers who increase their purchases. They will also delve into contamination issues with water supplies and feasibility of toughening campaign finance disclosure requirements. The Legislature's committees meet next Monday through Wednesday.
A caller near Saint Albans on Monday told 911 dispatchers that he'd been stabbed in the chest. The Kanawha County Sheriff's office identifies the victim as Edward McDuffie, and said he was hurt by his 22-year old son, Matthew McDuffie. According to the criminal complaint on file at Kanawha County Magistrate Court, Edward McDuffie, his wife Priscilla, and their son Matthew were consuming alcoholic beverages and an argument began between Matthew and Priscilla, and things escalated to the physical confrontation.
American Electric Power crews worked through the night to restore power to thousands of customers who lost it with last night's storms. High winds up to 60 mph knocked down power lines and trees, and some roads were blocked. There were no confirmed reports of tornadoes. At one point last night, American Electric Power reported more than 3600 in Kanawha County without power.