A Nelson County jury has found Linda Blackwell not guilty of first degree murder for the 2009 fire that killed a family friend at her Lovingston area home. Blackwell was also cleared of an arson charge related to that fire, but the jury found her guilty of arson in two later fires on the same property. Prosecutors say she did so to fraudulently to collect insurance claims. Sentencing is set for May.
FOREST, Va. (AP) – Thomas Jefferson’s Popular Forest is resuming daily operations after a winter of weekend-only hours. The News & Advance reports that daily operations at the historic attraction will resume Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Over the last few weeks, employees have tidied up the residence, including refurbishing floors and pulling old stumps for a season focused on telling a more inclusive story of Jefferson’s personal retreat. With the help of Randolph College, organizers also plan to draw more attention to telling the history of the slaves who lived there year round. Poplar Forest will hold guided house tours along with self-guided grounds exhibits and special events throughout the spring.
There will be slightly different ways of doing things in Appomattox County, now that the Board of Supervisors has approved amendments to the zoning ordinance. Changes have been in the works for the county since 2010; and on Monday board members voted in favor of the revised ordinance. Most of the amendments are updates to ensure the wording reflects the county’s current practices while matching state code. The biggest changes concern the special uses section of the ordinance; creating two categories for the home occupation regulation to address the county’s different population densities; as well as adjusting buffer and landscaping requirements for certain businesses.
Established in the late 1800′s, the neighborhood off Fifth Street has been at the center of an intensive revitalization effort for about 20 years. “Growing Tinbridge Hill,” is a multi-faceted plan and has been advocated by a coalition of citizens and civil groups. Long-term…the plan’s goal is to help homeowners get funding assistance to renovate their homes as well as to re purpose the many vacant lots. Now that City council has adopting the new master plan, some short-term goals can get underway; including installing new sidewalks, adding bus shelters, and creating a trailhead connection to the Blackwater Creek Trail.
Lynchburg Officials have rolled out a city budget…but work still needs to be done before it is adopted by council. The unveiling of the proposed budget, is merely a kick off for a two-month budget process for Lynchburg officials. City Council said on Tuesday, that there will be close evaluation of the new priorities for capital projects in this upcoming budget sessions. The proposal will be reviewed and revised over the course of several weeks. The final budget is slated to be adopted in May. It will take effect July 1. There are three community meetings planned this month to get public feedback on the budget …and citizen input on other city issues. For dates or to view the 2015 Fiscal Year Budget visit: www.lynchburgva.gov
The driver of the 18-wheeler responsible for a crash that killed one Campbell County woman and seriously injuring her husband in North Carolina on July 2nd 2013 has been sentenced. A judge on Tuesday sentenced Garland Newcomb to 2 years’ probation, 5 days in jail, a $2,000 fine and 250 hours of community service. Newcomb’s personal driver’s license has been suspended for two years, his commercial license, has been suspended forever. Newcomb was charged with misdemeanor death by a vehicle, and reckless driving after running a stop sign, colliding with a Jeep head-on killing 26 year old Holly Johnson and paralyzing 29 year old, Jamie Johnson; their two children were in the back seat.