Clifton Forge officials say they can't afford to be a city anymore... And want to cut taxes by becoming a town...
And the battle over the color of the Mill Mountain Star continues...
In sports, Scores and highlights from Major League baseball this afternoon.
And Randy Johnson gets his first start and win as a Houston Astro.
Blacksburg set a record low this morning as temperatures tumbled into the 40's. Do we have another record on the way? Weather details straight ahead.
A Martinsville woman is dead after falling from Grandfather Mountain in North Carolina.
The accident happened around 1:30 today.
Officials say 47-year old Patsy Ashby was crossing near the top of the private park when she fell.
It's the second such accident at the Mountain in as many years.
City officials in Clifton Forge say the city is financially strapped.
And, their only alternative is to revert back to town status.
[Double Boxes=Eric/David Newsroom]
David Johnson is standing by in our newroom--David there was talk of a reversion since 1993, what makes this latest development different?
[Live= David Full/David Newsroom]
Eric, up til now the discussion was whether to consider changing from city to town status.
It lost steam in 1994 with the election of a city council that opposed the idea.
Now the mayor implies it's not a question of IF the status will change, but WHEN.
And the city's council has appointed a committee to study the matter.
(Rollcue:study the matter.)
[IN Q=Campbell says Clifton]
[SUPER=03-Clifton Forge; :01]
[SUPER=01-Mac Campbell/Clifton Forge Mayor; :23]
[SUPER=01-Frank Pullen/Resident; QUICKLY!! :33]
[SUPER=01-Bob Williams/Resident; :36]
[OUT Q=for Clifton Forge.]
Mac Campbell, the mayor of Clifton Forge says the city cannot expand its boundary because state law prohibits it.
And he says the area already has some of the highest real estate taxes in Virginia--a dollar 13 per 100 dollars assessed value-- so he says raising taxes would be counterproductive.
A reversion, on the other hand, would take some of the financial stress away from the city.
[IN Q=THE BENEFITS]
((MAC CAMPBELL/CLIFTON FORGE MAYOR; THE BENEFITS OF TOWN STATUS WE BELIEVE WOULD ALLOW CLIFTON FORGE TO SHARE IN THE GROWTH OF THE COUNTY.))
[OUT Q=THE COUNTY.]
He says one of the main results would be reduced taxes.
[SOT=11:04:08 - 11:04:14]
[IN Q=IF THEY CAN]
((FRANK PULLEN/RESIDENT; IF THEY CAN GO TO TOWN AND SAVE US SOME MONEY, I'M ALL FOR IT.))
((BOB WILLIAMS/RESIDENT; I'M FOR IT IF IT CAN BE PROVEN THAT OUR TAXES WILL GO DOWN.))
[OUT Q=WOULD HAPPEN.]
Campbell says another concern is the loss of control over the town.
[IN Q=HOWEVER, THAT'S]
((CAMPBELL; HOWEVER, THAT'S, I BELIEVE, A PERCEPTUAL ISSUE. I THINK THAT THERE ARE NOT A LOT OF DOWN SIDES TO IT. BUT THAT'S WHAT OUR COMMITTEE IS LOOKING AT. TO SEE EXACTLY WHAT TOWN STATUS WOULD MEAN FOR CLIFTON FORGE.))
[OUT Q=CLIFTON FORGE.]
[Live= David Full/Newsroom]
The group conducting the research consists of city council members and anyone else who can provide the necessary input.
[Double Boxes=Eric/David Newsroom]
Campbell says this study won't be complete until the committee feels the information offers complete answers for the local residents.
A man is suing a nursing home in Lovingston, Virginia for half a million dollars.
Butch Thompson says his father, James Thompson, fell 15 times in just over a month at the hospital.
Thompson's lawyer says the falls may have occurred because of broken or improperly secured locks on the wheels of his bed.
A lawyer for the Lovingston Health Care Center says the falls were the result of illnesses Thompson was suffering from when he came to the facility.
No trial date has been set.
Roanoke City Council recently voted to keep the Mill Mountain Star white.
The star used to turn red everytime there was a fatal accident involving a
Now, some people are protesting the council's decision--including a Virginia Tech student, who voiced his opinion with a song.
[IN Q=WHAT I FOUND]
((BOB WHISONANT/SONG WRITER; WHAT I FOUND ODD WAS THE PEOPLE WHO WOULD SAY THE STAR'S TOO DEPRESSING. THIS IS TOO MORBID. I DON'T WANT TO BE REMINDED OF THIS. AND PEOPLE WOULD GET ANGRY ABOUT THAT. IT JUST STRUCK ME AS ODD THAT PEOPLE WEREN'T GETTING ANGRY THAT DRUNK DRIVING DEATHS HAD OCCURRED. THEY WERE ANGRY THAT THEY WERE BEING REMINDED.))
[SUPER=01-Bob Whisonant/Song Writer;]
[OUT Q=BEING REMINDED.]
Whisonant thinks people should have a chance to vote on the issue.
And, the group Mothers Against Drunk Driving agrees.
[IN Q=THE DECISION TO]
((TOM ALTMAN/REGIONAL MADD PRESIDENT; THE DECISION TO DISCONTINUE THIS PROGRAM WAS MADE BY VERY FEW PEOPLE. WE BELIEVE THERE'S A WHOLE LOT OF SUPPORT IN THE AREA FOR THIS PROGRAM.))
[SUPER=01-Tom Altman/Regional MADD Pres.]
[OUT Q=FOR THIS PROGRAM]
Altman says turning the star red isn't meant to memorialize the victim, but to promote public awareness about drunk driving.
Whisonant will perform his song "The Last Red Star" on Mill Mountain tonight at 8 o'clock.
[HARD MUSIC UNDER]
Up next--one of the biggest jackpots for the state lottery is now history--we'll tell you where the winning ticket was sold.
And, one man's effort to get in shape took him on a trip to China where he learned the art of Kung-Fu.
We'll have more on that story in a few minutes--first let's check in with Robin Reed for an update on the weather.
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[MUSIC UP FULL]
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[SUPER=83-Down 0.56 foot/Down 0.45 foot;Lake levels][Lotto-Winner]
Last night's Virginia Lottery drawing made one Virginian an instant multi-millionaire.
That's according to lottery officials who say the winning ticket was purchased in Newport News.
Last night's 20 million dollar jackpot was one of the highest in the history of the game.
The winning numbers were 2-5-22-24-25 and 28.
Local companies that make car parts celebrate the end of the General Motors strike.
And the governor's car-tax plan might be more than cities bargained for.
Scott Goldberg has those stories and more in this week's News-7 Business Review.
[SUPER=01-Gary Cole/Kingston-Warren Plant Mgr.; :19]
[SUPER=04-File Tape; :38]
[SUPER=03-Henry County; :51]
[SUPER=03-Richmond/File Tape; 1:04]
[OUT Q=i'm sgo]
[SCOTT IN FRONT OF CHROMAKEY]
((This week on the Review:
General Motors and the United Auto Workers union agreed to start making cars again.
And the agreement could not have come soon enough for local companies that make G-M parts.
[SOT from 598-29]
[IN Q=we understand]
((GARY COLE/KINGSTON-WARREN PLANT MANAGER: WE UNDERSTAND THAT WITH GENERAL MOTORS AS OUR ONLY BUSINESS, IF SOMETHING LIKE THIS DOES HAPPEN, WE'RE KIND OF AT THEIR MERCY. THERE'S REALLY NOTHING WE CAN DO.))
[OUT Q=WE CAN DO]
Kingston Warren had to lay off 200 people while G-M workers went on strike.
Other parts manufacturers had to shorten their work weeks until the strike ended.
[98-54 or rail merger]
The biggest merger in rail history is proving rather costly for Norfolk Southern and CSX.
Both Virginia railroads reported second-quarter declines in earnings.
And both blamed their losses on money they're spending to take over Conrail.
Governor Gilmore swung through Henry County this week to drop off a check for 200-thousand dollars.
The money will help Bassett Furniture build a new dining room table plant...
Which should help the company add about a hundred jobs to the local economy.
What the governor giveth to one company he taketh away from lots of localities.
A new study said counties and cities will have to pay for part of the car-tax phase out .. the plan that got Gilmore elected.
The governor had said the state would cover the entire administrative cost that comes with getting rid of the personal property tax.
[**QUICK natsound of bell, backtime to breaking gavel]
They didn't break any records on Wall Street.
But look what they did to the gavel!
[QUICK sound up of gavel breaking]
A smashing end to a losing week.
[Dow Jones pre pro]
The Dow dropped 54.
The Nasdaq tumbled 59 points.
That's a three percent loss...
And that's this week's Business Review.
I'm Scott Goldberg.))
Kung Fu is a martial art many people find difficult to master.
But a Roanoke-native took up the challenge, and is now the country's Chief Master of Kung Fu.
David White took his first martial arts class 22 years ago as part of a New Year's resolution to exercise more.
[SOT=17:07:59 TAPE ONE]
[IN Q=I DECIDED THAT]
((DAVID WHITE/SHAO LIN KUNG FU MASTER; I DECIDED THAT I WANTED TO GET FIT AND GOING TO THE "Y" AND LIFTING WEIGHTS AND PLAYING BASKETBALL JUST DIDN'T ATTRACT ME. SO I THOUGHT I'D START THE MARTIAL ARTS INSTEAD.))
[SUPER=01-David White/Shao Lin Kung Fu Master;]
[OUT Q=MARTIAL ARTS INSTEAD.]
He is now one of the most skilled martial artists in the U-S.
And he also holds the title of (SEE-FOO)"Sifu", which is Chinese for teacher or father.
[SOT=17:44:59 - TAPE TWO]
[IN Q=HE IS A]
((ALEX HUYNH/STUDENT; HE IS A MARTIAL ARTS INSTRUCTOR, BUT HE PLAYS MORE OF A ROLE AS A FATHER TO THE SHAO LIN STUDENTS. HE TEACHES US TO TREAT EACH OTHER EQUALLY AND SHOWS US THE LOVE THAT A FATHER WOULD SHOW HIS CHILDREN.))
[SUPER=01-Alex Huynh/Shao Lin Student;]
[OUT Q=SHOW HIS CHILDREN.]
White says he could have taught anywhere in the world, but decided to
teach in Roanoke to be closer to his family.
A recent controversy at Smith Mountain Lake got one viewer thinking about other issues in that area.
Joe McKean tells us what he had to say in this week's edition of News-7's Feedback.
[IN Q=The story that prompted]
[SUPER=04-July 23; :00]
[OUT Q=McKean, News-7.]
((The story that prompted the letter was the private meeting in which the Smith Mountain Lake Policy Advisory Board discussed executive director Hilde Hussa's comments on lake water testing.
John Willett wrote: "Thanks for the coverage about Hilde Hussa. We're wondering just how many organiations have something to do with the lake and how long before the counties surrounding the lake wake up & take notice of their 'golden egg-laying goose.'
An article not long ago in one of the newspapers quoted a developer who mentioned the millions of tax dollars the counties have received since all the development of lake shore property began. Where has all the money gone?
There are expressions as to the cost of additional skimmers to help clean the lake but no one mentions using tax monies the counties already receive to pay for such things. Likewise, the cost of more extensive monitoring. Maybe it's time some of the lake-shore property owners ran for county supervisors in each of the counties."
If you have comments on our news coverage or issues in the news, send them along.
Write to Feedback, P.O. Box 7, Roanoke, 24022-0007.
You can send a fax to 540-343-7269.
Our email address is email@example.com.
And a moderated on-line forum is on our web page, at www.wdbj7.com.
Joe McKean, News-7.))
[HARD MUSIC UNDER]
Still ahead--Denise Allen will check in with the Charlotte Hornet's Dell Curry.
And, Robin Reed will be back with an extended look at your work week weather when the news continues.
[MUSIC UP FULL]
Construction of a new interchange in Montgomery County drags on.
And, guardrail repairs mean more delays along portions of Interstate-81.
Stacey Martin has more in this week's edition of Road Report.
[IN Q=Construction is still]
[SUPER=03-Montgomery Co.; :08]
[SUPER=04-File Tape; :39]
[OUT Q=I'm SM.]
((Construction is still underway along the Route 4-60, I-81 Interchange in Montgomery County, and the traffic delays continue.
Once completed, the extension project will connect the Route 4-60 Bypass to I-81 and Falling Branch Road.
Only one lane of traffic is getting Monday through Friday from 9 a-m to 3 p-m near the Route 4-60 Christiansburg Bypass and Route 4-60 Business intersection.
In Botetourt County, traffic is once again moving smoothly along Route 11.
Crews have finished resurfacing portions of the road in that area.
And, some lanes will be closed temporarily this week along Interstate 81 in Washington, Smyth, and Wythe counties.
Crews will be making repairs to guardrails along the Interstate.
That's it for this week's edition of Road Report.
I'm Stacey Martin.))
If you missed the History of Racing exhibit at the South Boston Museum.... you have a second chance.
The exhibit is extending its pit stop at the museum through the month of August, because of all the interest from race fans.
Special features include rare footage of races at Daytona, Darlington, and the South Boston Speedway dirt track.
They also have Richard Petty's shoes, hat, a championship ring, and a gold medallion he won.
And coming up, The Braves and Cardinals hooked up again this afternoon in Atlanta.
And Charlotte Hornet Dell Curry talks about free agency and the family life.
The Atlanta Braves scored three runs in the fifth and held on to beat the St. Louis Cardinals 4 to 3.
[SUPER=03-Atlanta, GA/TBS; :]
Mark McGwire in the dugout waiting his turn at Bat.
Atlanta would get on the board in the bottom of the first Ryan Klesko hits the double to the gap in left centerfield scoring Keith Lockhart from first to make it 1 to nothing Braves.
The Cardinals would take the lead in the top of the fourth Bobby Witt hits a grounder off the glove of Chipper Jones scoring Willie McGee and the Cardinals went on top 2 to 1.
But the Braves broke it open in the fifth Javier
Lopez hits a single scoring Chipper jones to make it 3 to 2 and the Braves win it 4 to 3.
Randy Johnson appears to have found a home with the Houston Astros.
[SUPER=03-Pittsburgh, PA; :]
Johnson started his first game since the trade from Seattle.
He was strong early in the game this strikeout game him three and he would strikeout 12 on the day.
But Johnson did give up a homer. This solo blast by
Aramis Ramirez over the left field wall tied the game at 1 to 1 and And the Astros pull out the 6 to 2 victory giving Johnson his first win in his first start as an Astro.
Several other games this afternoon in Major League Baseball lets check those scores.
[WIPE TO MOTION]
[SUPER=0091-j/Detroit/3//Tampa Bay/2///j/Baltimore/9//Kansas City/2///;]
[SUPER=0092-/St. Louis/3/j/Atlanta/4///j/San Diego/4//Montreal/1///;]
[SUPER=0092-/Los Angeles/3/j/New York/9////Arizona/2/j/Milwaukee/7///;]
[OUT Q=...last score."]
[TAPE#=SP-25 tc 27:06]
The Charlotte Hornets all time leading scorer is a free agent.
And because of the NBA Lockout, Dell Curry has yet to negotiate a contract.
But as Denise Allen shows us, Dell is doing his usual off season thing--the family thing.
[IN Q=I think]
[SUPER=01-Page Moir/Rke. College Basketball Coach; :06]
[SUPER=01-Dell Curry/Charlotte Hornets Guard; :31]
[OUT Q=news 7 sports]
Dell credits his wife, for keeping the family together during the very long NBA season.
Much of his time is spent on the road, but having his family to come home to has provided a sense of stability that's helped him excel on the court.
Dell's children often travel with him during his annual trip to Page Moir's summer basketball camp.
But this weekend Dell and his family are traveling to watch his oldest son perform on the diamond in the National AAU baseball tournament.
As soon as the NBA lockout is over it will be back to pro-basketball for Dell.
The free agent still has to negotiate where he'll play his 13th NBA season.
Denise ALlen NEws 7 Sports.))
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