Thursday May 1, 2014

Dozens of nurses at Appalachian Regional Healthcare who threatened to walk off the job Thursday morning will not strike after all.  Members of the Southern United Nurses/National Nurses United union reached an agreement with ARH Wednesday that prevents the planned one-day strike at ARH hospitals in Hazard and Beckley, West Virginia.  Both sides came to terms on a new, three-year labor contract. Details of the deal were not released. It's expected that the more than 700 members of the union will vote between Wednesday and Friday next week whether to ratify the new contract.
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Officials tell us they are investigating a fire in Magoffin County.  It happened at the River Bend Apartments on Gardner Trail Road in Downtown Salyersville and started just before 4am Wednesday morning at the building that housed eight apartments. No one was hurt.  Firefighters say they got the fire out in about 30 minutes and then worked to clear the scene for almost three hours.  No word on the cause, but the State Fire Marshal and the Arson Investigator are on the scene.
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Court officials tell us a new trial date has not been set.The Jenkins City Council has approved salary raises for the mayor and council members who will take office in 2015. The mayor’s annual salary was increased from a base of $28,000 to $31,000 per year. The raise does not affect incentives already in place that, if met, can raise the mayor’s pay by $4,000. Council salaries were doubled to $50 per month.
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There will be another round of bidding before the fate of the old McRoberts School building is decided. At its April meeting, the Jenkins Independent Schools Board of Education met in closed session before voting to reject all bids submitted. While the decision to talk about the bids behind closed doors came as a surprise to audience members, Board Attorney Tim Crawford cited an opinion from the Kentucky Attorney General’s Office that he said allows school boards to go into executive session to decide the outcome of a bid opening.
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A voting machine for voters who expect to be absent from the county or can’t make it to the polls on Election Day will open today in the offices of Letcher County Clerk Winston Meade. Voting machine hours are 8:30 a.m. until 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, and 8:30 a.m. to noon on Saturday, from May 1 to May 19.