After a labor dispute that's lasted a year- and- a- half, union employees at Rubatex approve a new contract.
A live report, coming up.
And a bomb threat at Amherst High School turns out to be a hoax.
Sunshine and warmer temperatures today but we could be looking at the exact opposite by tomorrow. Our weather forecast is ahead.
Stay where you are-- News 7 at noon is next.
Rubatex and its striking union workers come to an understanding...
[GRAPHIC=Rubatex Contract Vote]
A contract for Rubatex Union workers has been officially ratified by the union.
[DOUBLE BOXES=Kim / Jen Microwave;]
It's the first time union members will be working under a contract since September 1999.
News 7 Business Reporter Jennifer Miele is live in Roanoke this afternoon?
Jen what did you learn down there today?
((ROLLCUE:...RBX officials are very excited about today's developments))
(///// SOT /////)
[DOUBLE BOXES=Kim /Jen Microwave;]
Commercial truck market slowdowns are forcing a Botetourt County manufacturer to make cutbacks.
(muh-TAHL-suh) Metalsa -- formerly Tower Automotive is letting 18 production workers go.
The company produces frame rails for class "A" trucks.
It's main customers, Volvo, Peterbuilt, and Kenworth, are cutting back as well.
(muh-TAHL-suh) Metalsa says its been struggling with a continuous downturn in sales throughout 2000.
But, the company says it may call the furloughed employees back to work by the end of the year, if the truck market picks up significantly.
A bomb hoax at Amherst High School disrupted classes for about half an hour this morning.
A note found in the school library yesterday said a bomb would go off at 11:07 today.
Officials searched the building and found nothing suspicious.
But as a precaution, they evacuated the school from 10:45 to 11:15.
As expected, nothing happened.
Many students decided to stay home anyway.
The charges against the suspect in Monday's assault on a Virginia Tech student have been bumped up to attempted murder...
Twenty-year-old James Lee Harris is being held without bond in the Montgomery County Jail, accused of attacking a 19-year old female student.
The Pembroke man was originally charged with malicious wounding after police say he severely beat the
freshman in the basement of Henderson Hall
Harris was working as a janitor on the campus after being contracted from an outside staffing company.
The victim, an art major, had been using a computer lab Monday afternoon.
She was found in a bathroom.
Hospital officials can't release information on her condition.
[GRAPHIC=US Supreme Court]
[**NOTE ANCHOR TAG!!]
The Supreme Court is hearing arguments today on whether marijuana should be legalized for medicinal purposes.
Diana Olick profiles a California man who's made it his business to provide POT for pain sufferers.
(///// SOT /////)
[SUPER=03-Oakland, CA; :00]
[SUPER=01-Jeff Jones/Cannabis Buyers Cooperative; :27]
[SUPER=01-Gerald Uelman/Jones' Attorney; :47]
[SUPER=01-Irv Rosenfeld/Cancer Survivor; 1:14]
[SUPER=01-Diana Olick/Reporting; 1:39]
[OUT Q=marijuana with impunity.]
JEFF JONES REMEMBERS WATCHING HIS FATHER DIE A SLOW, PAINFUL DEATH
NAT: "Good morning Oakland CBC"
VO THAT'S WHY WHEN CALIFONIA LEGALIZED MEDICAL MARIJUANA IN 1996, HE
OPENED THE CANNABIS BUYERS COOPERATIVE.
NATSOT "You need to bring in a doctor's note dated within the last six
VO BUT WHILE HE STILL REGISTERS MEMBERS, FEDERAL LAW BARS HIM FROM
SUPER: JEFF JONES/CANNABIS BUYERS COOPERATIVE
"We believe that the federal policies are outdated unjust and are
indifferent to the compassionate needs of these patients."
VO THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT TOOK HIM TO COURT, CITING THE CONTROLLED
SUBSTANCES ACT, WHICH PROHIBITS THE SALE AND POSSESSION OF MARIJUANA.
TODAY, FOR THE FIRST TIME, THE SAME CASE WILL GO BEFORE THE U-S SUPREME
SUPER: GERALD UELMAN/JONES' ATTORNEY
"Our position is, if you can do it, then we can do it if you're not
going to do it."
VO JONES' ATTORNEY IS TALKING ABOUT A FEDERAL PROGRAM THAT GAVE POT TO
PATIENTS DEEMED TO HAVE A MEDICAL NECESSITY, LIKE BONE CANCER SURVIVOR
IRV ROSENFELD, SEEN HERE IN 1996. HE IS ONE OF EIGHT PEOPLE ALLOWED TO
STAY IN THE PROGRAM, WHICH WAS SUSPENDED IN 1992, SOME SAY DUE TO THE
FLOOD OF AIDS PATIENTS.
SUPER: IRV ROSENFELD/CANCER SURVIVOR
"There is no more hope period. The program was shut down and the
government is hoping the eight of us to die."
GRAPHIC MAP IN
(VO) DESPITE THE FEDERAL LAW, 8 STATES HAVE NOW VOTED TO LEGALIZE
GRAPHIC MAP OUT
"They're changing the climate and they're sending a message, and that
message is that more and more people, from personal experience, are
realizing this can be a helpful medication."
VO STILL, UNLIKE COCAINE, WHICH CAN BE PRESCRIBED MEDICINALLY, THE
FEDERAL GOVERNMENT PUTS POT IN ITS MOST DANGEROUS CATEGORY, THAT
INCLUDES HEROIN AND LSD.
"Where's the fallout from the operations that we're involved in?
where's the bad backlash to society from us being here?"
GRAPHICS IN : VEIL OVER SCOTUS SHOT WITH FONT OF QUOTE
THE JUSTICE DEPARTMENT ARGUES THAT IF THE LAWS ARE CHANGED "DRUG
TRAFFICKERS, ACTING UNDER THE GUISE OF 'MEDICAL NECESSITY' WILL BE ABLE
TO MANUFACTURE AND DISTRIBUTE MARIJUANA WITH IMPUNITY."
That was Diana Olick reporting.
Comair pilots remain on the picket lines, INSTEAD of in the air.
The ongoing strike against the airline means all Comair flights are canceled through NEXT Wednesday morning.
Meanwhile, THIS video was taken aboard Comair flight 50-54 last week.
A new federal report says ICE on the wing and propeller caused the plane to roll from side to side, and take a steep dive.
One of the passengers, who's also a pilot, captured the intense turbulence on tape.
(///// SOT /////)
[SOT 10:14:27 ]
[IN Q=A strange thought]
((ALAN GOURNALL/PASSENGER: A STRANGE THOUGHT RAN THROUGH
MY HEAD THAT IF I'M GOING TO DIE HERE...I'M GOING TO AT LEAST GET IT ON
VIDEO....MAYBE A BIT MORBID...BUT IT SPRUNG TO MIND. I WAS A LITTLE BIT
LATE ACTUALLY. THE PANIC HAD SET IN FIRST AND I HADN'T QUITE GOTTEN MY
[OUT Q=gotten my act together.]
The plane, which had taken off from the Bahamas, landed safely in West Palm Beach.
No one was hurt.
There will be some changes in Roanoke County's fire and ambulance service.
Right now, tax dollars pick up the cost of ambulance service in the county.
But yesterday-- the supervisors voted to start billing residents' insurance for the service.
All but supervisor Joseph McNamara voted for the change, which is expected to go into affect as early as the end of the year.
[in q=We don't ]
((JOSEPH MCNAMARA/SUPERVISOR: WE DON'T EVEN KNOW THE BUDGET FROM THE STATE YET I THINK IT'S PREMATURE TO PUT ANOTHER FEE ON THE PEOPLE OF THE ROANOKE VALLEY UNTIL WE KNOW ALL OF OUR FIGURES.))
[SUPER=01-Joseph McNamara/Windsor Hills Supervisor; :00]
[OUT Q= all our figures.]
The money generated would help pay for fire and rescue personnel.
Next month, 20- new fire and rescue workers will begin work in the county.
Yesterday, the supervisors unanimously agreed to begin advertising for 15 additional workers.
Under the plan, Mount Pleasant, Bent Mountain and Catawba residents would have Advanced Life Support service five days a week.
Other Roanoke County communities would also receive additional workers.
A Palestinian suicide bomber also killed two Israeli schoolboys, as they waited for their bus.
Four other people were hurt-- one critically.
Troops sealed off the area, searching for additional explosives.
[SUPER=03-Petah Tikva, Israel;]
In two other Israeli towns, authorities found bombs, which safely exploded.
The Islamic militant group Hamas claims reponsibility.
They say seven more bombers are ready to strike.
Meanwhile, Israeli officials say they're "running out of patience" after numerous attacks.
There are new concerns about Firestone tires.
Now, they represent a danger to vehicles that are depended on during emergencies.
Sharyl Attkisson explains.
(///// SOT /////)
[SUPER=01-Chief Joe Jackson/Pinion Pine Fire Department; :09]
[SUPER=01-Wayne Hollis/Former Kansas E.M.S. Board; :31]
[SUPER=01-Sharyl Attkisson/Reporting; :41]
[OUT Q=Attkisson, CBS News, Washington.]
Last fall, Chief Joe Jackson was rushing to a brushfire in Pinion
Pine Arizona, when his emergency call came to a screeching halt.
SUPER: CHIEF JOE JACKSON/PINION PINE FIRE DEPARTMENT
"JUST ALL OF A SUDDEN THIS TREMENDOUS NOISE, POW, AND IT WAS JUST IT WAS
ALMOST LIKE SOMETHING COMING APART ON THE BACK OF THE TRUCK. // ONE OF
THE REAR TIRES ON THE DRIVER SIDE HAD SHREDDED ON ME."
(V0) The tread had separated on one of his Firestone tires. And there
were reports of problems elsewhere on rescue vehicles...in South
Carolina, Georgia, Pennsylvania and Kansas.
SUPER:WAYNE HOLLIS/FORMER KANSAS BOARD OF EMERGENCY MEDICAL SERVICES
"I SENT A MEMO OUT TO ALL AMBULANCE SERVICE DIRECTORS TO FIND OUT HOW
WIDESPREAD THIS PROBLEM WAS, AND THAT'S HOW WE GATHERED THE FACT THAT
THERE WERE 18 CASES IN KANSAS."
(ATTKISSON O/C BRIDGE)
MANY INVOLVED FIRESTONE "STEELTEX" TIRES, THE TARGET OF A FEDERAL SAFETY
PROBE THAT BEGAN LAST FALL. BUT LONG BEFORE THAT, THERE WERE QUESTIONS
ABOUT STEELTEX TIRES. FOUR YEARS AGO, ARIZONA REPLACED STEELTEX TIRES ON
600 VEHICLES...INCLUDING SOME AMBULANCES...CITING TREAD SEPARATION.
(VO) (GRAPHIC IN - FIRESTONE STATEMENT GRAPHIC WITH SUPER)
Firestone says "the majority of incidents were related to the severe use
associated with (emergency) vehicles...and any tread separations
resulted from these extreme conditions." Also that it has now "begun
work" to track tires on ambulances and fire engines. (GRAPHIC OUT)
(VO) But many rescue squads are switching brands. Chief Jackson says his
tiny department can barely afford the cost of replacing all their
tires...but can't afford the risk of keeping them. Sharyl Attkisson, CBS
The town of Altavista is making some major cuts.
Town officials will lay off eleven people and eliminate ten vacant positions.
The town will also consolidate emergency dispatch services with Campbell County.
Town leaders expect lower revenues this year because of recent plant closings and the state's budget problems.
[IN Q=We are not anticipating]
((BRYAN FOSTER/TOWN MANAGER: WE ARE NOT ANTICIPATING ANY CHANGES IN EITHER THE NUMBER OF SERVICES OR THE LEVEL OF SERVICES THAT WE OFFER. WE'RE JUST GOING TO CHANGE THE WAY WE DELIVER THEM BUT THE CITIZENSHIP SHOULDN'T REALLY NOTICE ANY DIFFERENCE.))
[SUPER=01-Bryan Foster/Town Manager]
[OUT Q=notice any difference]
The layoffs take effect immediately.
The town is paying those workers a severance package based upon their length of service.
The switch over to Campbell County's 9-1-1 center takes place June first.
Brambleton Hardware is preparing to close shop.
The 44-year old store will close its doors, as soon as all the merchandise is gone.
The owner says there is more retail than the valley can support, and calls the decision to close his doors a very emotional one.
The going out of business sale begins tomorrow morning.
Everything in the store, including the building itself, is for sale.
School lunch has been interrupted by raw sewage twice in the last two weeks at a Botetourt County elementary school.
Children at Colonial Elementary School were moved out of the cafeteria last Friday, and once the week BEFORE, because raw sewage seeped into the lunchroom and kitchen.
School and health department officials say no food was contaminated and no kids were exposed.
The school's septic system dates back to 1939...
But the principal attributes the back-up to students who flushed inappropriate objects, including bottles and plastic bags.
How much money should you be allowed to give to a campaign?
The Senate is trying to figure that out today.
It's debating an amendment to the campaign finance bill that would boost the amount a person can contribute.
Sponsors say the increase doesn't keep even pace with inflation.
Opponents, meanwhile, argue it would give too much power to the rich.[Hanging-Tree]
A legendary tree in Southwest Roanoke has been cut down.
The site on Franklin Road may have been the scene of Roanoke's last public hanging.
Which wasn't a state-sanctioned execution, but a LYNCHING.
They took down the centuries old tree yesterday. It had died, had become a hazard to motorists, pedestrians and power lines.
Legend has it that a man was brought here and hanged from the tree in 1893, long before the property became Lotz Funeral Home.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=It's ironic that]
((IT'S IRONIC THAT A PLACE WHERE SOMEBODY WAS SLAIN ENDS UP BEING A FUNERAL HOME.))
[OUT Q=being a funeral home.]
Ruby says Bill Lotz always felt haunted by the legacy of the 19th century hanging.
Mr. Lotz died last April, but Ruby says he would have been glad to see the tree go.