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NEWS
Justin Ward and WDBJ7 Reporter | July 26, 2012
The chairman of the board of supervisors in Pittsylvania County says he's sorry for what he said. A day after the annual Pittsylvania County Board of Supervisors State of the County address, the chairman has taken back his wording in part of his speech. It was meant to boost the morale of business leaders and local politicians in Pittsylvania County. And for the most part, the board's chairman, Tim Barber's State of the County did just that. But one small reference in his speech Wednesday at the Community Center in Chatham now has the chairman retracting his comments.
NEWS
Justin Ward and News 7 Reporter | December 13, 2011
A Pittsylvania County plant is expanding and adding jobs. Amthor International is adding about 50 new jobs at its facility near Gretna. Amthor makes truck mounted tanks. This is the second time the company has expanded since it open in 1992. Currently they have about 60 employees.
NEWS
March 20, 2010
Fire burned a home in Pittsylvania County Thursday night. It broke out around 11:30 in the 2700 block of Sandy River Road in Axton. The fire appeared to have started in the basement of the home. No one was injured but there was heavy damage to the single-story home. The cause is under investigation.
NEWS
Justin Ward and Reporter | February 24, 2012
People in Southern Virginia could soon be handing over more tax dollars to local government. Both Danville and Pittsylvania County have proposed a tax increase because of a growing debt and they're getting less funds from the state. The Pittsylvania County administrator proposed the board increase the real estate tax by four cents, a $1 personal property tax increase, and a $4 solid waste fee. "The citizens of Pittsylvania County are no different from anywhere else they are suffering.
NEWS
Justin Ward and Reporter | August 25, 2011
Our hometowns want you to be prepared if storms threaten flooding or potential damage to homes. Severe weather is something meteorologists are always watching and a warning system couldn't arrive at a better time. Pittsylvania County is introducing an Emergency Alert Notification. It's similar to what your hometown station provides but it focused on community in their region. The system sends text alerts, phone calls and emails when a storm could produce flooding and gives advanced warnings for people to take shelter.
NEWS
Web staff | January 1, 2013
A local teenager, who was missing for more than half a day, is now safe with family members.    They'd last seen 17 year old Cori Franklin around 12:30 Tuesday afternoon.    By five Tuesday night, they called the Pittsylvania County Sheriff's Office for help.    Deputies, police dogs, and a State Police helicopter searched for Franklin all night.    They finally found her around 5:30 a.m. Wednesday in a heavily wooded area...
NEWS
Justin Ward and Reporter | October 14, 2011
A scary wake-up call for one family in Pittsylvania County Friday morning. A mother and son woke up to what sounded like an explosion in their home in Axton around 5 a.m. Their living room furniture was on fire and a window -- broken. Deputies say someone tossed a homemade bomb into the room. They're investigating video from a home security system. Another homemade bomb was found outside the home. The son fired one shot to scare away whoever threw the bombs. The homeowner tells News 7 she couldn't believe what was happening.
NEWS
Justin Ward and Reporter | January 9, 2012
We've all wished the rain to go away, but a group in Pittsylvania County says we need lots more. A lack of rain last summer and a warm winter isn't producing enough water for farms in the region. Rainfall totals for the beginning of this year fall about five inches below average. The low amount isn't serious enough to call it a drought but is "abnormally low" according to a national drought monitor.     Of course farmers aren't planting or harvesting crops now, but agruicultural experts there could be problems down the road.
NEWS
WDBJ7 Web Staff | August 11, 2012
A Henry County man involved in a motorcycle crash earlier this week has died. The accident happened on Monday. State Police say Demetrius Thomas was driving his motorcycle on Route 614 in Pittsylvania County when he ran off the road, hit a ditch, and flipped several times before striking a tree. He was flown to a hospital in Winston-Salem, North Carolina where he died Friday. Troopers say he was wearing a helmet.    Thomas was 31 and from Axton.
NEWS
Justin Ward and WDBJ7 Reporter | February 18, 2013
If the train tracks could talk, they'd tell days worth of stories about Pittsylvania County's transportation mecca. Glenn Giles, a historian and a Pittsylvania Historical Society board member, knows their history. "A model train diorama depicting the town of Chatham in 1930," Giles said. "The line was built in 1874. " Though the train tracks at the old station are mostly silent now, a much welcomed sight will get the building bustling once again. "We'll be moving all of the current resources that are at located in the county's main public library in here," Giles said.
ARTICLES BY DATE
NEWS
Web staff | June 21, 2013
The Pittsylvania County Sheriff's office has gotten calls from people about a telemarketing scam. Scammers are calling people andusing the popular "Life Alert" commercials to get personal information. They start off by saying a family member has signed them up for the serivce.  From there they try to get a social security number and date of birth and sometimes credit card information. Again, this has been going on for the past several days.
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NEWS
WDBJ7 Web Staff | June 19, 2013
A raccoon has tested positive for rabies in Cascade. The raccoon was found near Martinsville Highway. The Virginia Department of Health asks pet owners to vaccinate their pets immediately. Rabies can be deadly to humans to animals and humans. Here is the news release from the Virginia Department of Health: To all residents of Martinsville Highway, Cascade, Virginia A  Raccoon in your neighborhood recently tested positive for Rabies.  Rabies is a deadly disease caused by a virus that lives in the saliva and brain and nerve tissue of the infected animal.  Rabies is transmitted through a scratch, bite or by getting saliva or brain tissue in an open wound or in the eye or mouth.  Rabies is preventable in animals through vaccinations, but fatal to both animals and humans once contracted.
NEWS
June 7, 2013
Farmers in southern Virginia are keeping one eye on the sky, as a wet spring continues to complicate their operations. The moisture has been a benefit for crops already in the ground, but the frequent rains have put many of the area's tobacco farmers behind.   Stephen Barts is an Extension Agent in Pittsylvania County. "The concern now is not so much the tobacco crop is late being planted, but that puts you butting up against a frost at the end of the year," Barts told us. "We've been fortunate to see frost in October and November the last couple of years, but an early frost on a late-planted crop is not good.
NEWS
Justin Ward and WDBJ7 Reporter | May 22, 2013
Six, not 16 positions for school resource officers are open in Pittsylvania County. It's a small move in a large school safety plan the sheriff wanted installed immediately. Supervisors voted to apply for a grant that will fund half a dozen officers. The sheriff hoped to have the armed deputies in all 20 county schools before the start of next school year. He's now pushing for a Department of Justice grant that he predicts could pay for part of the $1.7 million  project for three years.
NEWS
Hollani Davis and WDBJ7 Anchor/Reporter | May 20, 2013
The Virginia Cooperative Extension wants to make sure homeowners who rely on wells, know whether their water is safe to drink. "We've got that rotten egg smell," says Linda Oliver, a homeowner in Roanoke County. Oliver, like an estimated 22 percent of Virginians, gets her water from a well.  Because the Environmental Protection Agency doesn't regulate wells, cisterns or springs, her concern has grown over the years. "We were curious or mostly I, to know the quality of the water my children and I were drinking," says Oliver.
NEWS
Justin Ward and WDBJ7 Reporter | May 17, 2013
Tobacco farmers are wishing today's rain never came. Recent storms have kept them from planting on time, now they're using all farm hands before it's too late. Ray Emerson and his crew were out early this morning planting rows of tobacco at his Pittsylvania County farm. The job is supposed to be finished by now, but rain and cold weather delayed planting by three weeks. "You like a soft, mellow soil, but this year with all the rainy weather clots and knots and it's just not conducive to good planting," Emerson said.
NEWS
Justin Ward and WDBJ7 Reporter | May 16, 2013
An all girls school in Pittsylvania County is losing its longest working employee. Curtis Jackson is retiring from Chatham Hall after working there for 62 years. He started in the 1950's when he was 22, milking cows then moved to maintenance where he kept up the landscaping. Jackson planted thousands of flowers in his career and saw even more students graduate. He decided to retire now at age 84 after a knee injury. "If I can't keep up with what I'm supposed to do you don't need me let somebody else do it. I'd be there now but I just wasn't holding up. See it was too much for me. That walking and all that," Jackson said.
NEWS
Justin Ward and WDBJ7 Reporter | May 16, 2013
A new program in southern Virginia is helping students get ready for the real world, even before graduating high school. Pittsylvania County schools are introducing a new Academy for Engineering and Technology this fall. Students can earn college credit or a work certificate starting next year. Juniors and seniors who complete upper level calculus classes are qualified. "Indeed it helps us to keep at the forefront for our school community that at the core of economic development is education.
NEWS
Justin Ward and WDBJ7 Reporter | May 15, 2013
Mold and water damage forced county workers out of their offices last year in Pittsylvania County. Now renovations are underway to make the building safer and ready to handle more foot traffic. The Pittsylvania County Sheriffs Office is expanding its offices from the basement and second floor to the third floor of the Moses Building in Chatham. The building used to house several county departments until workers started complaining of sinus issues. A study revealed part of the building was in bad shape due to a leaky roof.
NEWS
Hollani Davis and WDBJ7 Anchor/Reporter | May 2, 2013
Do the crime, pay the fine.  But a new report shows a lot of fines in Virginia go unpaid causing the state to lose out on nearly $171 million dollars a year. "My husband and I both got my traffic ticket back in November and about two weeks later we paid it," says Kelsey Schmidt. However a recent state audit shows many Virginians aren't that diligent.  In fact, it reports, nearly half of all court fines and fees in the state go unpaid. In Roanoke City, there's more than a million dollars in outstanding fees since the Virginia Supreme Court started collecting the data.  This is just for local offenses.  Roanoke County's current balance also hovers around the million mark.  Bedford, Pittsylvania and Franklin Counties debt all adds up to hundreds of thousands in unpaid fines.
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