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Matt Murphy

Local government writer
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Parks commission moves forward with Coonskin disc golf course


A new disc golf course at Coonskin Park is on its way to becoming reality as long as funds can be raised for the course equipment.

Thursday, the Kanawha County Parks Commission authorized Steve Koepsel, a leader of...

Top-O-Rock competition rescheduled after shakeup at W.Va. State


The design competition for the famed Top-O-Rock home in Charleston has been postponed and the original sponsor of the event, West Virginia State University’s Economic Development Center, is no longer affiliated wi...

Debate continues over gun ban at Kanawha parks


Kanawha County Commissioners and the president of the West Virginia Citizens Defense League spent more than an hour Thursday night debating the legality and merit of a firearms ban at parks operated by the Kanawha County...

Historic East End row homes could get new life


Vacant for years, a dilapidated line of historic East End row houses has a shot at new life.

Thursday, board members of the Charleston Urban Renewal Authority voted after an executive session to give local develope...

Helicopter to spread ATV safety awareness


HealthNet Aeromedical Services, the nonprofit that operates medical helicopters in the area, is joining with local hospitals and Hatfield & McCoy Trails system to bring the message of all-terrain vehicle safety to th...

Demolition of recycling center could make way for new beginning


As the century-old building at the Slack Street recycling center is reduced to a pile of bricks, the Kanawha County Solid Waste Authority is moving forward with its plans to restart a sustainable recycling program...

Newly re-elected Danny Jones could receive $20,000 raise under proposed bill


Mayor Danny Jones would get a $20,000 pay raise under a bill introduced in city council Monday night.

As proposed, the salary for the mayor would rise from $100,000 annually to $120,000 annually and would take effe...

Soon to close, Kanawha River Plant employees share memories at farewell picnic


Faster than anyone else in the group, Jeanne Sheets climbed the stairs at Appalachian Power’s Kanawha River Plant to reach the office she had for decades as an assistant to the plant manager.

It’s not...

Danny Jones wins historic fourth term as Charleston mayor


Becky Ceperley and Karan Ireland earn council seats as new at-large candidates

Charleston city election set for Saturday


Residents to determine fates of incumbent Danny Jones, city council ward leaders

Police say teens who broke into Top-O-Rock site have been identified


Charleston police are working with the owners of Top-O-Rock on a case of teenage vandalism of the iconic structure.

Earlier this week, two groups of what appear to be teenagers were caught on security camera breaki...

Consultant presents draft recommendations for city bike plan


Recommendations would improve bicycle friendliness in Charleston

Renewal authority eyes two downtown buildings


Two dilapidated downtown buildings could be demolished to make way for future development if sale offers by the Charleston Urban Renewal Authority are successful.

Authority Director Jim Edwards said Wednesday an of...

W.Va. “bicycle-friendliness” ranking improves


Efforts to make West Virginia better for bikes appear to be paying off, though the state still ranks in the bottom fifth of all states in t...

W.Va. home rule program to expand again


Locally, Charleston, South Charleston, Dunbar and Nitro are home rule cities

Kroger gas station delayed on city’s West Side


Kroger still is planning to construct a fuel station on Charleston’s West Side, but work can’t begin until the state Department of Environmental Protection finalizes the environmental remediation process fo...

Airport board refinances debt to begin making landslide settlements


Yeager Airport’s board of directors voted this morning to refinance the facility’s parking garage bond debt, which is expected to provide it with more than $5 million in additional funds to help offset expe...

Big funding gap for Charleston mayoral candidates


Danny Jones boasts $46,318.76 in the bank; Democrat Paul Monroe reports total of $7,305

Planning Commission OKs Civic Center design


A contract for renovations to the Charleston Civic Center should be drafted by next Friday to be ready for city council’s vote on June 1, Councilwoman Mary Jean Davis told the city’s Municipal Planning Comm...

Demolition of recycling center building begins (video, gallery)


Teardown to take about three weeks; authority plans to rebuild on site when funding allows

County commission designates funds to help airport begin landslide payouts


Officials expect reimbursement from insurance companies

City to purchase Middle East Mart at transit mall


As part of its overall plan to improve Slack Plaza, the city of Charleston plans to purchase the nearby Middle East Mart by Aug. 1 under a bill introduced in a city council meeting Monday night.

If approved, the ci...

Bicycling safety campaign launched in the Kanawha Valley


‘Give ‘em 3 feet’ aims to keep roads safe for Kanawha Valley cyclists

Charleston early voting begins today


Early voting for Charleston’s general election begins today at the city clerk’s office at City Hall, with contested races for mayor, council at-large and six of the city’s 20 wards.

Voting will...

Proposal would bury MCHM soil at Charleston landfill


Freedom Industries wants to move dirt from tank farm to Charleston facility

East End Bazaar begins 2015 season on Saturday


Chainsaw carving, a chili cookoff and live music are on the slate for this year’s East End Bazaar, an open air market in the neighborhood that starts its 2015 season this Saturday.

Now in its third season, t...

Part of Yeager Airport hill collapse to be removed


Officials fear if more debris falls, it could cause flooding as far as Greenbrier Street

Putnam Commission discusses Manila Ridge water extension, Winfield annexation


The Putnam County Commission is trying again for a water line extension along Manila Ridge in Putnam County, but some residents are questioning whether the taps will ever reach their homes.

The proposed $1.8 millio...

South Charleston council certifies election results


Democratic races decided by less than 30 votes each

Former prosecutor, national gun group, Berkeley delegate among mayoral candidate Scott’s biggest donors


Ex-mayor hopeful submits form due two months ago

Opposition to Wal-Mart market in Putnam continues


A number of Putnam County residents remain fired up about a Wal-Mart Neighborhood Market proposed for the Teays Valley area.

Thursday evening, Wal-Mart representatives held a public open house in council chambers ...

Misunderstanding may have affected outcome of tight S.C. council race


A possible misunderstanding may have affected the outcome of a ward race in South Charleston’s primary, a representative of the city’s Democratic Executive Committee said.

During the primary election ...

Smoking, vaping could be banned at Charleston parks


Smoking tobacco and using electronic cigarettes could be banned in all facilities operated by the Charleston’s Parks Department.

The proposal to create such a ban, still in draft form, was discussed during a...

Meeting scheduled in Elkview for Blue Creek Bridge replacement


A public open house is scheduled Monday for residents to voice opinions about the West Virginia Division of Highways’ plan to replace the 90-year-old Blue Creek Bridge in Elkview.

While construction isn ...

Solid Waste Authority close to termination agreement with former tenant


Authority close to terminating lease with former Slack Street tenant

Kanawha not feeling the punch of declining coal severance tax


Declining coal

severance tax does not affect county as much as others

Counties, cities set property tax rates for 2015-16


Residents in Kanawha and Putnam counties won’t see property tax rate increases next year from their respective counties after each county’s commission voted to keep tax rates the same on Tuesday.


Design team picked for Civic Center renovations


A team consisting of BBL Carlton, ZMM Architects and national firm tvsdesign is the winning design team for the Charleston Civic Center renovations, city council learned Monday.

The team was one of three finalists ...

Cause of Hughes Creek blowout threat still undetermined


Hughes Creek residents evacuated in March because of mine threat

40 Charleston streets scheduled for new asphalt this season


Parts of 40 streets throughout Charleston are set to get a fresh coat of asphalt this season as part of the city’s annual street paving program.

Most of the city’s efforts this year will be focused on...

Coonskin Park aims for disc golf


Proposal would follow trails behind Coonskin; would be fifth in the Kanawha Valley

South Charleston primary election set for Saturday


Three of South Charleston’s eight council seats will be decided this Saturday in the city’s primary election.

Residents in wards 1, 2 and 3 only have candidates from one party on the ballot, meaning t...

Summers Street building redevelopment moving forward


A downtown building the Charleston Urban Renewal Authority purchased last August is close to the next step in redevelopment.


Settlement reached in landfill MCHM case


Agreement ends lawsuit filed last year against landfill that accepted Freedom spill chemicals

Some Putnam residents concerned about traffic from proposed Walmart grocery store


A group of Putnam County residents is concerned the development of a Walmart Neighborhood Market in Teays Valley will upend the “residential appeal” of their community.

More than 35 people gathered at...

County to join in airport slide-related legal actions


Making good on a promise made last month, the Kanawha County Commission will join in on any legal action Yeager Airport takes against insurance companies that so far have not been responsive to claims over the airport hi...

After being threatened with lawsuit, Romney fire department silences siren


Citizen threatened to sue over night whistle; no alarm could cause damage

East End woman accused of killing roommate pleads not guilty


The woman accused of stabbing her roommate to death on Charleston’s East End last fall over living arrangements, spilled alcohol and a crackpipe pleaded not guilty to the crime at a hearing Thursday morning.

Yeager Airport officials ‘frustrated’ by progress of insurance companies


As the investigation into the cause of the Yeager Airport landslide continues, airport officials are frustrated that the various insurance companies involved are not moving faster in addressing issues of property owners ...

Alderson’s new grocery store offers fresh, local produce


ALDERSON — The drought is over for this food desert in eastern West Virginia.

After months of planning, building and fundraising, a nonprofit group in Alderson opened the town’s new grocery store la...