State workers offer the governor ways of cutting state spending... short of laying them off.
And the county's not just soaking the city. The extra revenue is aiding the search for additional water sources.
Tonight on News 7 Sports - 110 teams test at Martinsville today for the Taco Bell 300.
The Hillcats hook up with the Pirates for four more years.
And the Blue Ridge is set to split next season for all sports.
We'll have the VHSL's executive committee breakdown.
Lots to cover weatherwise, from local showers to tropical storms to a Tech forecast that is looking good. All that just ahead.
News 7 at Six is next.
[IN Q=LET'S BE STRAIGHT]
[OUT Q=WITH EACH OTHER.]
Governor Warner has a frank discussion with state workers.
But it may not have been want they wanted to hear.
Good evening, I'm Keith Humphry.
And I'm Shannon Young.
Governor Warner addressed about 250 state workers from all across Virginia.
They came prepared with questions, suggestions and plenty of concerns.
[DOUBLE BOXES=Keith-SHannon & Meghan/State Microwave;]
Meghan Muldoon was at today's meeting. So how did it go?
Keith and Shannon, the governor faced a roomful of people very concerned about losing their jobs.
[LIVE= Meghan /FULL State Microwave]
And if they were looking for some encouraging words, they didn't get many.
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[IN Q=WE'RE ASKED TO MAKE SACRIFICES.]
[SUPER=01-Kathi Keller/VA Dept. of Corrections; 1:00]
[SUPER=01-Anna Kennedy/VA Dept. of Health - Roanoke Office; 1:14]
[OUT Q=I FEEL FOR THOSE PEOPLE.]
[IN Q=WE'RE ASKED TO MAKE SACRIFICES]
[OUT Q=BUT NEVER REWARDED FOR SACRIFICES THAT WE MADE.]
Governor Warner took that question and many more like it but offered no assurances to apprehensive state employees that their jobs would be saved.
Layoffs he said are necessary.
[IN Q=I'M NOT GOING TO STAND UP IN FRONT]
[OUT Q=THAT THERE'S NOT GOING TO BE ANY PAIN.]
State employees offered their ideas to the governor for closing the budget shortfall and, thus, saving their jobs.
Suggestions included requiring shorter workweeks, raising the cigarette tax and lowering the state's energy bill by turning off unused lights.
One state worker asked whether some agencies, like education and public safety, would be spared the axe at others expense.
[IN Q=I FELT LIKE HE GAVE ME SOME]
[OUT Q=AREN'T SOME SACRED COWS IN THERE.]
Warner said afterward he thought the forum was "helpful."
But many state employees left with a sense that nothing had changed.
[IN Q=WE'VE BEEN TOLD THAT CUTS ARE COMING.]
[OUT Q=SEE THAT ANY DIFFERENTLY.]
[IN Q=I'M NOT WORRIED ABOUT MY JOB]
[OUT Q=AND I FEEL FOR THOSE PEOPLE.]))
[LIVE= Meghan /FULL State Microwave]
Friday is the deadline for state agencies to submit their budget cutting proposals.
[DOUBLE BOXES=Keith-Shannon & Meghan /State Microwave;]
And Warner is expected to begin announcing the cuts and the layoffs soon after.
[///// ANCHOR TAG /////]
Once upon a time, some questioned whether Roanoke County even needed a reservoir.
Today, as Carvin's Cove continues to sink to new lows, Spring Hollow is providing not just the County but also Roanoke City with water.
Which is one reason the Utility Department is digging for more.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=With a skirt of earth...]
[SUPER=03-Roanoke Co.; :00]
[SUPER=01-Gary Robertson/Roanoke Co. Utility Director; :21]
[OUT Q=Until then, unlike H2O, hope springs eternal.]
((With a skirt of earth separating the surface of Spring Hollow from the tree line, the reservoir looks as if it's running dry.
In reality, the 240-foot deep man-made lake is still at 70-percent capacity.
Still, Roanoke County's Utility Director says the more water he can find, the better.
[IN Q=Right now we're collecting seepage water...]
((GARY ROBERTSON/UTILITY DIRECTOR, ROANOKE CO: RIGHT NOW WE'RE COLLECTING SEEPAGE WATER FROM THE DAM. APPROXIMATELY HALF MILLION GALLONS A DAY WE'RE COLLECTING AND PUTTING BACK INTO THE RESERVOIR ON A CONTINUAL BASIS.))
[OUT Q=on a continual basis.]
In June, the county installed two seepage pumps.
Every two weeks the added equipment salvages about a day's worth of water.
But with Roanoke County swimming through 7-million gallons a day and Roanoke City buying another four million a day, Gary Robertson wants a backup plan.
[IN Q=We've picked at least five sites to drill...]
((ROBERTSON: WE'VE PICKED AT LEAST FIVE SITES TO DRILL SOME TEST WELLS. WE HOPE WE CAN BE SUCCESSFUL THERE TO GET A REASONABLE SUPPLY OF WATER THAT WE COULD ACTUALLY PUMP INTO THE LINE THAT GOES TO THE TREATMENT FACILITY AND TREAT IT AND SEND IT TO OUR CUSTOMERS.))
[OUT Q=and send it to our customers.]
Robertson says he'll start worrying about the water supply in earnest if the reservoir makes it through the 90-day forecast without collecting any significant rainfall.
Until then, *hope* unlike H2O, springs eternal.))
Robertson says the seepage pumps and new wells are being paid for with money set aside from the reservoir's construction and the profits made from selling water to Roanoke City.
Relatives of Jennifer Short want to make sure she has a home to return to.
An aunt and uncle are asking a Henry County judge to make them her guardians.
Jennifer's been missing since August 15th, when her parents were found shot and killed in their Henry County home.
Her family holds out hope she's alive.
Mary Short's sister Ruby Young and her husband Chris are petitioning the court to be guardians.
Other family members say that's OK ... as long as they're allowed visitation rights.
A judge will hear the matter in Henry County juvenile and domestic court Friday.
A Henry County man will spend two years behind bars for shaking his six-month-old daughter to death.
Twenty-four-year-old James Ray Hooker pled guilty to involuntary manslaughter in July.
This week he got a 10-year sentence, with eight years suspended.
Hooker admitted he initially made up a story to police last November about his daughter being injured in a car accident.
Hooker testified yesterday that the death was an accident.
Still ahead on News 7, why a local hospital is offering services normally reserved for five-star hotels.
And people living near Virginia's nuclear power plants line up for something that could save their lives.
Next month, a judge will consider whether members of the Clark Family Experience acted in bad faith when they filed for bankruptcy protection.
The six brothers from Franklin County, and their Nashville record company were back in court today
[DOUBLE BOXES=Keith-Shannon & JoeD/Newsroom Pod;]
and Joe Dashiell is here with more on where their case is heading.
Keith and Shannon, the brothers say they can't pay their bills,
[LIVE= JOED /FULL]
while their record company claims they're simply trying to get out of their contract.
Today, a bankruptcy court judge said he wants to hear more...
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=Between dates in Denver]
[SUPER=04-September 15, 2000; :08]
[SUPER=01-Lori Thompson/Curb Records Attorney; :30 ]
[SUPER=01-Richard Foster/Clark Family Attorney; :40]
[OUT Q=how they were going to pay their bills.]
((Between dates in Denver and Greensboro, the Clark brothers returned to U-S Bankruptcy Court in Roanoke.
The brothers were on the fast track to country music stardom when they signed a major recording contract with Curb Records... but more than two years later their album has only reached stores in the last month... and the brothers say they aren't bringing in enough money to satisfy their debts.
Lawyers for the record company argue the Clarks acted in bad faith, and a judge has agreed to hear testimony and decide if their petition should be dismissed.
[IN Q=Our position]
((LORI THOMPSON: OUR POSITION IS THAT THEY DID FILE THEIR PETITION FOR THE SOLE PURPOSE OF TRYING TO GET OUT OF THEIR CONTRACT WITH CURB RECORDS, WHICH IS NOT A PROPER USE OF THE BANKRUPTCY PROCEEDING.))
((RICHARD FOSTER: I THINK IF YOU LOOK AT THE OVERALL FINANCIAL CIRCUMSTANCES OF EACH OF THE SIX BROTHERS, ITS PRETTY CLEAR THEY DIDN'T HAVE ANY MONEY AND THEY WERE CONCERNED HOW THEY WERE GOING TO MAKE ENDS MEET, HOW THEY WERE GOING TO PAY THEIR BILLS.))
[OUT Q=going to pay their bills.]))
[LIVE= JoeD /FULL]
Since their last appearance in bankruptcy court, the Clark Family Experience album has reached record stores. The CD was released on August 20th...
[DOUBLE BOXES=Keith-Shannon & JoeD /NEwsroom Pod;]
Keith and Shannon, the Clarks have been touring to support the album, but it doesn't appear this recording will prove to be the success that Curb Records and the Clarks once hoped it would be.
A former Virginia Tech employee has pled guilty to using the university's credit cards to buy things for herself.
28-year-old Shannon Allen was sentenced to two years probation, for using state-issued credit cards to charge more than 36-thousand dollars in personal items.
Allen initially faced four felony counts of embezzlement, but, through a plea agreement, the charges were reduced to a misdemeanor.
Allen was an employee of Tech's Department of Near Environments.
She has paid back all the money.
Residents who live near either of Virginia's two nuclear power plants have an opportunity to get a pill that could save their lives during a nuclear emergency.
Potassium iodide pills are being distributed at the Peninsula Health Department in Newport News.
In July, the state health commissioner requested more than a half-million doses from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
Potassium iodide helps prevent the development of thyroid cancer following exposure to radioactive iodine, one of the contaminants that could be released in a nuclear accident or successful terrorist attack on a nuclear plant.
Stocks ended in the red after a late-session rally attempt failed.
[TAKE DOW & NASDAQ PAGE]
The DOW dropped 35 points.
NASDAQ fell eight.
Lewis-Gale Medical Center wants to be the Ritz Carlton of health care, which is why its upgrading its amenities to provide five star service.
Shuttle service is just the beginning of the changes you'll find at Lewis-Gale.
There is also a bellhop ready to open the door and assist with a wheelchair.
And the concierge is there to help for those who need help finding a patient room or directions to a nearby restaurant.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=When you walk in a hospital]
((KIM LEE/VISITOR; WHEN YOU WALK IN A HOSPITAL YOU'RE KIND OF NERVOUS ANYWAY SO WHEN YOU HAVE A WARM GREETER IT TAKES THAT ANXIETY AWAY THEY TELL YOU EXACTLY WHERE YOU NEED TO GO AND HOW TO GET TO YOUR ROOM IT'S NICE ))
[OUT Q=your room it's nice]
Lewis-Gale also plans to start recognizing and rewarding its employees who go above and beyond for co-workers and patients.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=We wanted our employees to have]
((JIM THWEATT/LEWIS-GALE; WE WANTED OUR EMPLOYEES TO HAVE THE ATTITUDE I HAVE THE TIME WHICH MEANS THAT THE PATIENT OR VISITOR IS THE MOST IMPORTANT THING AND THEY HAVE TIME TO ASSIST THEM))
[SUPER=01-Jim Thweatt/Lewis-Gale ]
[OUT Q=to assist them]
The shuttle service will be available Monday thru Friday from 8 to 4-30 p-m.
Coming up tonight on the Big 7, the Blue Ridge district now has a firm plan for next season and beyond.
The Hillcats decide to the stay attached to Pittsburgh.
And more than 100 Late Model Stock car teams tuned up for the Taco Bell 300 today with an open practice session at the Martinsville Speedway.
The Virginia High School League's Executive Committee met today in Charlottesville and one of the big items on its agenda was what to do with the Blue Ridge District - which as it is right now would be an 11 team district for the next school year.
One side led by Salem, Pulaski and Fleming argued to keep it that way.
The other side led by Roanoke County's schools, plus Alleghany, Christiansburg and Lord Botetourt argued for a split.
Well, the committee in essence rejected both proposals, but did break the Blue Ridge in half.
[GO TO PINNACLE BLUE RIDGE NORTH]
The new Blue Ridge North will feature the following five schools - Alleghany, Lord Botetourt, Northside, William Byrd and William Fleming. Those five will compete in the Northern tier.
[GO TO PINNACLE BLUE RIDGE SOUTH]
The Blue Ridge south will align, Blacksburg, Cave Spring, Christiansburg, Hidden Valley, Pulaski County and Salem.
Everyone from Alleghany principal Kenny Higgins, to Fleming George Miller to Salem superintendent Wayne Tripp attended the meeting and - or spoke today.
All schools agreed to submit to the VHSL's recommendation.
Saturday's Virginia Tech - Texas A & M showdown in College Station will have a truly personal touch to it for the Tech coaching staff.
Former Hokies assistant J.B. Grimes is the offensive line coach at Texas A & M.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=These guys....]
[SUPER=01-J. B. Grimes/Coached at Va. Tech from 1993-97; :00]
[OUT Q=..SEE WHAT HAPPENS."]
[GO TO PINNACLE 13098]
And remember folks Tennessee hosts Florida this Saturday in front of 105 thousand fans at Neyland Stadium in Knoxville.
Coverage from CBS on Your Hometown Station begins at 3pm Saturday with the kickoff set for 3:30 right here on WDBJ-7.
The country's best late model stock car drivers invaded Martinsville speedway today to test for the September 29th Taco Bell 300. Steve Mason explains why this year's race is shaping up to be the best yet.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=first audio]
[SUPER=01-Ray Young/Drives Late Model #57 Car; :16]
[SUPER=01-Jimmy Mullins/Finished Third in 2001 Taco Bell 300; :21(QUICK)]
[SUPER=04-2001 Taco Bell 300; :30]
[SUPER=01-Chad Harris/New River Valley Speedway Points Leader; :47]
[SUPER=01-Robert Clements/Will Drive #09 Cundiff Trucking Ford; 1:09(QUICK!!!!)]
[SUPER=01-Rodney "6 Pack" Cundiff/Semi-Retired from Racing; 1:13]
[SUPER=01-Butch Hamlet/Driver of #21 Taco Bell Car; 1:34]
[SUPER=01-Clay Campbell/Martinsville Speedway President; 1:43]
[OUT Q=...News 7 sports"]
Last week, the Lynchburg Hillcats won their second Carolina League Championship. Today the club announced an extension of its partnership with the Pittsburgh Pirates.
[SUPER=03-Lynchburg/Carolina League Championship; :00]
The two have reached an agreement on a player development contract through the 2006 season. The four year deal is the continuation of a partnership that began in 1995. A key component for the Pirates agreeing to the stay in Lynchburg was the assurance of the long awaited renovations to Merritt Hutchinson Stadium. The Lynchburg Council approved the construction on September 10th, the same night the Cats clinched the league title.