No grave sites found in Botetourt County at Greenfield Center

Botetourt-CountyThe Botetourt County Board of Supervisors and staff have received an initial report from the archaeologists regarding the possible presence of grave sites around the existing location of two historical buildings at the Botetourt Center at Greenfield. According to Dovetail Cultural Resource Group, who performed the field investigation and study for the County, no evidence of burials has been found at the two locations proposed to contain grave sites. Moreover, no evidence of burials has been found in the proposed area for the road on which the buildings will be moved. A detailed report is forthcoming and will be released as available. As of Monday, February 8, no work is being performed on site regarding the move of the buildings. As a result of the archaeological findings, the final preparations for the move could be completed as soon as the end of this week, depending on weather and other environmental factors.

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Body storage bill called unnecessary

General-AssemblyAdvocates of the home-funeral and green burial movements say a body storage bill in the General Assembly is unnecessary. WFIR’s Starr Anderson has the details:

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For more about the Senate Bill 595 click here.

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Gas prices will start heading up soon — but should again be lower than year before

Gas-Prices1Gas prices will soon be heading up, but experts predict that once again, average prices will be lower than the year before. The reason for the annual rise: higher demand in warmer months and the changeover to a federally-required and more expensive summer blend. WFIR’s Evan Jones has the story.

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Volvo scales back layoffs at Dublin truck plant

Volvo Trucks logoDUBLIN, Va. (AP) _ Volvo Trucks says it will lay off fewer workers at its Pulaski County plant than previously announced. The Roanoke Times reports that the truck maker confirmed last week that about 600 workers are losing their jobs this month. The company announced in December that it would lay off 734 workers at the New River Valley Assembly Plant in Dublin over a three-week period in February. Volvo attributed the cuts to a decrease in demand. John Miles, a spokesman for Volvo Trucks North America, said company officials have determined they can manage the market adjustment without cutting as many jobs as initially anticipated. The 1.6-million-square-foot plant employs 2,800 workers and is the largest Volvo truck manufacturing facility in the world.

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Today is deadline to register to vote in Virginia primaries

Election CheckRICHMOND, Va. (AP) _ Virginians who aren’t registered to vote but want to cast ballots in the March 1 presidential primary need to act fast. Monday is the deadline to register. In Virginia, voters don’t register by party. Any registered voter may choose to cast a ballot in either the Democratic or Republican primary. For weeks, it looked like voters in the GOP primary would have to sign a statement affirming their Republican affiliation. The plan drew criticism, and the State Board of Elections has rescinded that requirement at the request of the state GOP’s governing body.

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Daniel Hale says his life experiences a plus for City Council

WFIR Election 2016This Saturday at the Berglund Center local Democrats will choose three City Council candidates from a field of 6 in a firehouse primary. WFIR’s Gene Marrano has spoken with all of the candidates – including Daniel Hale:

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With three weeks to go in Virginia, poll finds Sanders with highest favorability rating, Trump the lowest

WFIR-campaign-2016With Virginia’s presidential primary now just over three weeks away, a statewide poll shows Democrat Bernie Sanders with the highest favorability rating  at 40%; Republican front-runner Donald Trump has the highest unfavorable rating  with 61%. More from WFIR Intern Reporter Clark Palmer:

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Byran Hamlar withdraws from City Council race; cites pending family responsibilities

Byron Hamlar

Byron Hamlar

Byran Hamlar Statement:” After prayer and thoughtful consideration, I have made this difficult decision. With great intentions, I entered the race because I felt I could make a difference for our community. However, realizing the importance of the council and its commitments, I am concerned that I would be unable to fully devote myself at this time. My wife and I are expecting our first child in the upcoming months. Although I feel strongly about serving the community, my first commitment must rest with my family. I would like to thank all of my supporters and friends for their encouragement. Please know that this will not be my final involvement. I will look for future opportunities to enthusiastically serve the great people of the Roanoke Valley.”

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Salem shoplifting call leads to police pursuit, foot chase and arrest

Israel Cunningham

Israel Cunningham

From Salem Police: This morning at approximately 8:21 a.m., officers were called to the 1800 block of West Main Street in reference to a shoplifting incident. The suspect was observed leaving the parking lot, and officers were given a description of his vehicle as soon as they arrived on the scene. The male suspect’s car was quickly located in the vicinity, but the driver refused to pull over when officers activated their emergency lights and siren. A pursuit ensued and eventually ended in Roanoke City where the vehicle was abandoned in the 200 block of Westside Boulevard. After a short foot pursuit, the suspect was located and taken into custody. Israel Antonio Cunningham, 27, of Roanoke, has been charged with Grand Larceny and Felony Eluding. Cunningham is currently being held at the Roanoke County/Salem jail without bond. There were no injuries during the incident.

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Roanoke River Trail gets facelift

RVARC photo

A popular trail off the Blue Ridge Parkway has undergone a facelift – and there’s a celebration today to mark that occasion. More from WFIR’s Gene Marrano:

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