Thursday, October 25, 2007


KY,WV and VA Agree to Cleanup Big Sandy River.

Officials from Kentucky, West Virginia and Virginia gathered at the Breaks Interstate Park and announced that the three states are committed to cleaning up the Big Sandy River.

The agreement pledges to manage wastewater, monitor water quality and share information. The goal is to keep each other accountable for the clean up effort.


Halloween Tips

Halloween will be observed in Pike and Mingo Counties on Tuesday, Oct, 30th from 6pm-8pm. The flowing are safety tips for motorists, children and homeowners.

For Motorists

Don’t drive impaired by drugs or alcohol

Stay alert for increased pedestrian and bicycle traffic on Halloween night

Be patient and slow down. Give children plenty of time to cross the street.

Excited kids may forget to stop, look and listen before crossing the street.

Drive defensively . Don’t assume that a pedestrian will move in a predictable manner.

Be extra cautious in areas where vehicles are parked along the side of the street. Trick or treaters may dart into traffic from between parked cars.

Watch for children walking in the street, especially if there are no sidewalks in the neighborhood.

Also watch for children walking in the street, especially if there are no sidewalks. Also watch for children walking on medians and curbs.

Enter and exit driveways and alleys carefully.

For Parents and Caregivers

Trick or treaters should carry flashlights or glow sticks.

Dress children in costumes that are light-colored and clearly visible to motorists.

Costumes should be no longer than ankle-length to prevent tripping, entanglement or contact with flame.

Use face paints or make up rather than masks that could impair vision.

Wear light colored clothing or add reflective tape to costumes and trick or treat bags.

Children should wear comfortable , well fitting, sturdy shoes.

Children should wear flame resistant costumes. Avoid paper costumes.

Younger children should be accompanied by an adult.

Older children should stay in a group.

Avoid capes that could pose strangulation risks by getting caught on structures or yard decorations your child may encounter.

Make sure props such as swords, scythes, pitchforks, spears, wands or knives are flexible with smooth or rounded tips to prevent eye injuries if fallen upon.

If driving children to trick or treat, make sure they exit vehicle on the curb side and not the traffic side.

Instruct your children not to eat any candy until they bring it homeand you examine it thoroughly..
Do not permit children to bicycle, roller-blade or skateboard while wearing a costume.

Secure identification ( name, address, phone number) on or within a child’s costume.

Teach children their home phone number and how to call 9-1-1 if they become lost or have an emergency.

For Trick or Treaters

*Don’t assume the right of way when crossing a street. Motorists may have trouble seeing you.

Be very cautious of strangers.

Trick or treaters should only visit houses that have porch lights on

Never enter a stranger’s house or vehicle.

Stay on well lit streets and always use the sidewalk. If no sidewalk is available, walk at the farthest edge of the roadway facing traffic.

Never cut across yards or use alleys

Don’t run. Always walk when crossing streets or going from house to house.

Cross streets only at corners and crosswalks.

Remove mask or any item restricting eyesight before crossing streets.

Cover one side of the street at a time no crisscrossing.

Don’t play near jack-o-laterns, the candle inside could start a fire.

Stay with the adult who is leading the group.

Stay away from and don’t pet animals you don’t know.

For Homeowners

Turn on your porch light

Eliminate tripping hazards on your porch, yard and walkway.

Remove wet leaves from steps and sidewalks.

Use battery powered jack-o-latern candles or light sticks. If candles are used . place pumpkin away from area where children will be walking or standing.

Never drape a fabric ghost or other decoration over a light bulb

Make sure that paper or cloth lawn decorations do not blow into a burning candle.

Do not overload electrical outlets or extension cords with lighting or special effects.

Pets can be frightened by Halloween activities. Restrain them or bring them indoors to protect them from cars or from accidentally hurting trick or treaters.


Authorities Working Leads in Three Week - Old Bank Robbery Case.

Kentucky State Police Trooper Scott Hopkins informed us that the KSP is continuing their search for the suspect that robbed the Robinson Creek Branch of the BB&T Bank. A male suspect entered the bank back on October second and got away with an undetermined amount of cash. The male used a motorcycle to get away. The motorcycle was found abandoned about a mile from the bank.

Hopkins says that although they have made no arrests they are working several good leads.


15 Suspected Drug Dealers Arrested in Pike County.

An investigation by Operation UNITE into the illegal sales of prescription drugs in Pike County resulted in the arrests of 15 suspected drug dealers. Assisting UNITE detectives in the roundup were officers from the Pikeville Police Department, Kentucky Vehicle Enforcement, Pike County Sheriff’s Department, Kentucky State Police, Kentucky Probation and Parole and the Kentucky Bureau of Investigation.

Iain Dalrymple noted the most common drugs purchased were Oxycontin, Oxycodone, Hydrocodone, and Suboxone. After being processed at the Marrowbone Fire Department, the suspects were taken to the Pike County Detention Center.

Those arrested were :
Josh Adams, 29, Pikeville, first degree trafficking in a controlled substance, trafficking in a controlled substance within 1,000 yards of a school and persistant felony offender.

Charles R. Bowling, 46, Lookout, second degree trafficking in a controlled substance.

Crystal Bowling, 35, Lookout, first degree trafficking in a controlled substance and two counts second degree trafficking in a controlled substance.

Dell Bowling, 51, Lookout, second degree trafficking in a controlled substance.

John J. Clevenger II, 31, Rockhouse, second degree trafficking in a controlled substance.

Danny D. Fleming, 56, Lookout, first degree trafficking in a controlled substance.

Brandon Holbrooks, 21, Lookout, first degree trafficking in a controlled substance, second degree trafficking in a controlled substance, persistent felony offender.

Edith M. Holbrooks, 33, Rockhouse, first degree trafficking in a controlled substance and second degree trafficking in a controlled substance

Bertha Little, 45, Lookout, second degree trafficking in a controlled substance.

Billy R. Little, 71, Hellier, two counts second degree trafficking in a controlled substance, one count third degree trafficking in a controlled substance, persistent felony offender.

Roger D. Little, 46, Lookout, second degree trafficking in a controlled substance, persistent felony offender.

Eddie D. Newsome, 58, Hellier, second degree trafficking in a controlled substance.

Harold Price, 58, Hellier, second degree trafficking in a controlled substance, third degree trafficking in a controlled substance.

John D. Buck Williams, 42, Hellier, first degree trafficking in a controlled substance

Tommy D. Williams, 37 Hellier, first degree trafficking in a controlled substance.


Mine Tracer System Unveiled in Mingo County.

The new Mine Tracer Tracking system was unveiled this morning during a press conference which was held at the Southern West Virginia Resources Mine at Naugatuck.

The GPS unit allows the location of underground miners to be identified in the occurence of an accident inside of a underground mine. Minetracer becomes the eyes and ears for communicating and locating mining personnel.Information regarding the location of each miner at the time of the event will provide rescue teams the guidance needed for efficient rescue plans.

Each miner has the ability to communicate with the mine office by pressing an alert button on their personal mobile communicator. The mine office communicates with miners via wireless access points. Should power need to be cut off in the mine. Minetracer continues to operate for days on its integrated backup power.

The use of mesh communicators enable Mine Tracer to extend the wireless communicators range throughout the mine. Redundancies built into the system ensures no single point of failure.

" We are extremely pleased with the Mine Tracer System being available for our coal mines,"
stated Senate Majority Leader Truman Chafin. " This will provide a vital form of communication necessary to complete rescue attempts should a mine disaster occur."
" The safety of our miners is of the upmost concern for legislators within our state, and we are proud to be a part of this exciting announcement," commented the senator.

The state legislature passed a law requiring all underground miners to wear this device on their belt.


Funding Secured for Construction of Community Center.

Residents in the Bent Branch area for years have been attempting to get funding for the construction of a community center in there area. That perseverence has paid off. The Pike County Fiscal Court presented community members with the first of two $50,000 coal severence checks for the construction of the Open Fork/Bent Branch Community Center. The facility will be built adjacent to Bent Branch Park. District Five Magistrate Hilman Dotson says that this project has been in the works for years. Dotson added that the new community center will serve to greatly benefit and enhance the quality of life of residents in the community. The center is scheduled to open in mid 2008.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007


KSP Recover Stolen Safe. No Arrests Have Been Made.

Last week vandals broke into the Coal Run Dairy Cheer and made off with a safe. Kentucky State Police Trooper Scott Hopkins told us that detectives have recovered the safe. Hopkins told us that the safe was found in Floyd County at Mud Lick. The safe was broken into and the contents were taken. Authorities have information on the truck that was used during the alleged crime. No arrests have been made, however authorities are working several leads.


Three People Arrested in Paintsville Charged With Sexual Abuse.

The Kentucky State Police made three arrests on the same street in Paintsville. All three are accused of sexually abusing children.

According to Kentucky State Police Trooper Scott Hopkins, after a two month investigation, Larry Hayden was taken into custody and charged with sexual abuse, sodomy and rape. Hopkins says that two victims were involved.

In a separate investigation that had been ongoing since last month, the KSP arrested Larry and Florene Stambaugh. They were charged with sexual abuse of a minor, rape and sodomy.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007


18 Wheeler Hauling Coal Overturned at Belfry.

According to the Kentucky State Police ,an 18 wheeler hauling coal overturned in the Belfry area. The accident is affecting the northbound lanes near the Speedway. Emergency crews are on the scene cleaning the coal from the highway. Motorists can expect delays. No injuries are reported


Consol and Contiga Partner Together in Construction on Portion of King Coal Highway

The King Coal Highway project in Mingo County took another step forwasrd today as Mingo County Redevelopment Authority Director Mike Whitt announced plans for a segment of the roadway.

The project involves a five mile segment of the 93 mile long planned highway in southern West Virginia with coal mining planned by Consol Energy and future post-mine development plans held by Cotiga Development Company.

Consol Energy has developed a long range plan for its Miller Creek Complex which calls for mining to continue in the Belo and Delbarton area. A part of that plan, identified as Buffalo Mountain Surface Mine project, proposes to mine the coal and to construct a rough grade, a section of the King Coal Highway as part of its post mine land use.

A memorandum was signed Monday morning at the Williamson Fire Station.

" Consol Energy is pleased to play a part in helping Mingo county and the State of West Virginia realize their goals of establishing this section of the King Coal Highway," said Consol Energy Group COO Bart Hyita.

West Virginia Governor Joe Manchin attended the announcement. " This project provides a substantial boost to help us move along construction of the King Coal Highway, and we're thankful that Consol and Cotiga for making it possible ," said Gov. Manchin." This donation of land and services will benefit West Virginia in many ways by saving millions of dollars in construction costs and by facilitating construction of this much needed highway."

By combining post mine land use plans with plans to build the King Coal Highway, WV Department of Transportation Secretary Paul Mattox Jr, noted the cost of the develop the road will be significantly reduced.

" This initiative is of tremendous value as an innovative public private partnership that produces significant savings to the taxpaying public," Mattox said. " Typical grade/drainage projects in southern West Virginia may cost as much as $25 million per mile and it is anticipated that this initiative will save as much as $110 million in the cost to construct the roughbed to rough grade for future highway construction."

Monday, October 22, 2007


U of L President Visits Pikeville High School. School to Receive Additional Computers.

Dr. James Ramsey, President of the University of Louisville visited Pikeville High School Monday . Pikeville High is in partnership with U of L and the Kentucky Data Seam Initiative.

Ramsey toured the school and spoke with students. Ramsey says that Pikeville High School is very important to his institution. Thirteen Pikeville High Graduates attend U of L. also he told students on how important attending college and receiving an education is.

The KY Data Seam Initiative is an economic development program that is based out of Louisville.

The company has been in existence since 2003. CEO Bryan Gupton told us that Data Seam has put in 60 computers in the Pikeville School District. Gupton says that Pikeville high will soon receive another 100 work stations. Data Seam has put in over 7,000 computers in schools across Kentucky.

Data Seam main focuses are to use research to motivate students in science and technologies and to create jobs and opportunities for Kentucky residents that reflect the 21st century economy.

Dr. Ramsey added that all of the computers that are in the schools are linked to the cancer research center at U of L.

Data Seam receives funding through the multi county school severance fund.


Stopover Man Sentenced to Prison.

Pike County resident Rudy Owens was sentenced to a five year prison term by Pike County Circuit Court Judge Eddy Coleman.

The 63 year-old Stopover man was charged with first degree sexual abuse. Judge Coleman denied Owen's request for probation.

According to Commonwealth Attorney Rick Bartley, the defendant had improper contact with a child under 12 years of age.


Outdoor Burning Ban Lifted in Pike County.

Monday, Pike County Judge Wayne T. Rutherford lifted the outdoor burning ban. The fall forest fire season continues until Dec, 15th.

Outdoor burning is permitted from 6 pm until 6 am.

Rutherford says that drought conditions still exist and all care should be taken with any outdoor fires.

Rutherford rescinded the ban upon the recommendation of State District Forester Dexter Conley.


Unemployment Rate in Southern WV Coalfields Decrease.

Despite having unemployment figures above the state average of four percent. Counties in our listening area reported less residents out of work. McDowell has the highest unemployment rate. Mingo County has the eighth highest. Here are the following figures for the month of September for counties in the listening area.

Mingo: 5.3 % = -1.5 %

Logan : 5.0% = -0.8 %

McDowell : 7.4% = -1.1%

Wayne : 4.1% = -1.1%

Monongalia and Hampshire had the lowest at 2.9 %


Chapmanville Man Sentenced to Seven Year Prison Term

A Logan County man will spend seven years in a federal prison. 30 year-old Troy Jarrell of Chapmanville pleaded guilty to one count of being a felon in possession of a firearm. The sentence was handed out by US District Judge John T. Copenhaver


Fatal Motorcycle Accident This Weekend.

A Mingo County man died from injuries sustained in a motorcycle accident. 36 year-old larry Fields of Varney lost control of the bike and struck a tree. When he was ejected his head hit a rock . The accident happened in Pike County.

Sunday, October 21, 2007


Two Escaped Inmates Captured in Floyd County.

The Kentucky State Police captured two inmates that escaped from the Frankfort Career Development Center, a minimum security facility. The two men were arrested Saturday at a McDowell residence without incident.

23 year -old John Case was serving time for robbery,and 21 year -old Joey Collins was serving time for burglary and theft.

The pair walked away from the facility on October 13th.

The Frankfort career Development Center trains inmates with the goal of helping them return to the workforce.


ARH and Nurses to Resume Contract Negotiations Next Week

Officials from Appalachian Regional Hospital, Kentucky and WV Nurses' Association will meet with a federal mediator on October 29th to resume contract talks. Over 600 nurses have been on strike for three weeks.

ARH officials halted negotiations a few days before the October 1st deadline, presenting the nurses' union with its final offer. ARH offered a pay raise and flexible schedules.

The nurses day said that the proposed contract reduces holiday pay and increases insurance premiums. The nurses also said that they have to work too many double shifts. ARH officials told us that the weekly call in rate was very high.


Mingo County Teacher Wins National Award.

Doug Martin, a teacher at the Mingo County Career Center recently received the American Stars of Teaching Award.

Martin a 1990 graduate from Burch High School went on to work as a graphics designer for Disney before turning to teaching.


President of U of L to Speak at Pikeville High School Monday.

Dr. James Ramsey, President of the University of Louisville, will visit Pikeville High School on Monday from 1:30 pm to 2:30 pm. Dr. Ramsey will be speaking with students and touring the school. The Kentucky Datastream Initiative will also be presenting the school with computers.


Former Floyd County Bank Employee Sentenced to Prison.

A Floyd County woman was sentenced to four months in federal prison after she admitted to embezzling nearly $43,000 from the Prestonsburg Branch of Community Trust Bank. Maria Danielle Scott admitted that she would take money from her cash drawer for her personal use and would then alter bank records.

Scott agreed to immediately pay restitution back to the bank. After her release from prison she will serve four months of home confinement and five years probation.


KY Division of Water Issues Water Shortage Warning for Portion of Area.

The Kentuckty Division of Water has issued a water shortage warning for the Elkhorn Creek watershed in Pike County and all of Letcher and Harlan Counties.

Our area is about 18 inches below normal in precipatation, resulting in low - flow conditions in creeks that are the source for many local water supplies.

A water shortage warning means the availability of water has reached a critically low level.


$48 Million Dollar Project Approved for Mountain Parkway,

Governor Ernie Fletcher joined state and local officials in breaking ground for a $48 million dollar project to widen a section of the Mountain Parkway east of Campton. Other than pavement resurfacing and bridge deck replacement no noteworthy improvements have been made to Kentucky’s first parkway since it opened in January 1963.

The project will include the widening of the Mountain Parkway to four lanes between exits 43 and 46. It will also include the addition of a ramp from northbound KY 15 at Campton to the eastbound lanes of the parkway. Special drainage features will be added to control runoff from the roadway surface to improve the quality of water in Campton Lake.

The section that is being widened has been the scene of 18 accidents in the last three years, resulting in eight serious injuries and one fatality.


KY Gov Ernie Fletcher to Campaign in Pike, Johnson and Martin Counties.

Kentucky Governor Ernie Fletcher will be back in the local area Monday as he kicks off his “ Victory 2007” Barnstorming Tour. The governor will be at the following locations.

Downtown Inez from 2:45 pm till 3:30 pm

Paintsville at the W.R. Castle Fire Department from 4:30 to 5:15 pm

Pikeville at the East Kentucky Expo Center from 6:30 pm to 7:30 pm.

Fletcher will continue the bus tour until election day


WV Gov Joe Manchin to Visit Williamson Tuesday

West Virginia Governor Joe Manchin will make an appearance at 9am Tuesday morning at the Williamson Fire Station. There will be an announcement by Consol Energy, in cooperation with Cotiga Development Company, regarding the King Coal Highway in Mingo County. Consol will agree to construct and to rough grade another section of roadbed for the I – 73/ I 74 highway from Buffalo Mountain to Belo through its Miller’s Creek reserve area as a post mine land use project.

In addition to Consol’s signature, the Memorandum of Understanding will be signed by the West Virginia Dept of Transportation, the WV Division of the Federal Highway Administration, Cotiga Development Company and the Mingo County Redevelopment Authority.

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