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BREAKING NEWS

Editorials

Social Media: Mall brawls show risky behavior

Monday evening, in shopping malls across the country — Connecticut, Tennessee, Ohio and North Carolina — fights broke out that sparked panic and confusion. The series of apparent coincidences largely involved teenagers who brought social media mob mentality to very real, public ...

School Buses: Drivers deserve praise for keeping kids safe

Thousands of Wood County parents send their children off to school each day, and wait for them to arrive home in the afternoon, via school buses. They do not think twice about trusting their children’s safety to the men and women who drive those school buses because they know the drivers have ...

Population: Higher taxes have a limit

West Virginia lawmakers, already talking about higher taxes to balance the state’s budget, should bear something in mind: As the cost of state government goes up and up and up, there are fewer Mountain State residents to cover the bill. During the past year, our state lost nearly 10,000 ...

Education: More to teaching than certification

Wood County Schools Superintendent John Flint told members of the Board of Education last week that a policy for allowing alternative certification for substitute teachers will come before them early next year. The sooner the better. According to Director of Personnel Sean Francisco, ...

Generosity: Siblings deserve praise for gift basket work

When three siblings from Tuppers Plains decided to give gift baskets to patients at the Strecker Cancer Center, as a way to cheer up the patients but also honor a late relative’s own fight with cancer, they “didn’t think it would be that big a deal,” according to the oldest, 19-year-old ...

Christmas: Today is a joyous day for celebration

Today most Christians are celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ, surrounded by family and friends; good food and presents; twinkling lights on a tree and carols filling the air. There is good reason this is known as the most wonderful time of the year. In celebrating the birth of a baby ...

Thumbs Up, Thumbs Down

UP: To the quiet joy of Christmas Eve, whether it be during a candle-lit church service or an evening gathered with family at home; the reason for the season is most clear tonight. DOWN: To census estimates that show West Virginia has lost 10,000 residents over the past year. In fact, ...

Journalism: ‘Fake news’ threatens solemn responsibility

With so much talk lately about “fake news,” Associated Press photographer Burhan Ozbilici reminded us all how important true journalists are, and why we need a certain kind of person willing to practice the craft. Certain readers consumed fake news for generations — though it used to ...

Painkillers: Lots of blame to go around for pill flood

U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration records released earlier this week show drug wholesalers had been shipping prescription painkillers to West Virginia in amounts so massive it amounted to 433 pills for EVERY person in the state —that is 1.84 million people — over five years. It is ...

Truancy: Ohio lawmakers set stage for improvement

Ohio lawmakers have passed a bill that treats truancy as a problem for schools and parents to solve, rather than a crime to be dealt with by the courts. That is probably a good thing, so long as students — and, let us face it, some older students are no longer “children” — do not get ...

Parting Shot: Stream Protection Rule would cost jobs

President Barack Obama could not resist a parting shot that extended his legacy of vindictive executive overreach. When his administration released a new Stream Protection Rule Monday, the intent was clear: one last attempted blow to coal miners and their families. In a re-working of the ...

Opportunity: Lawmakers can ease judicial roadblocks

As West Virginia’s Republican-led Legislature enters its third year with an opportunity for real change, it is getting a nod from the American Tort Reform Association for what it has accomplished already. “Once perennial Judicial Hellhole West Virginia this year makes what optimists ...

Tourism: We can do our part to tout West Virginia

Efforts to increase West Virginia’s tourism revenue stream appear to be working well, according to a report presented to the Commission on Tourism last week. The return on investment is double what it was in 2014, with every dollar spent on marketing efforts returning $14 in state ...

Thumbs Up, Thumbs Down

UP: To city and hospital leaders working so hard to find the best way forward for Sistersville General Hospital. The recommendation to City Council that the hospital be put out for bid is a good one, which will include current options for the hospital while broadening the scope to include any ...

Pets as Gifts: Do not give animals for Christmas

A recent note from the Ohio Attorney General’s office warned against “puppy scams;” online attempts to steal money from those hoping to buy a puppy that probably does not even exist. Scammers increase their activity at this time of year, presumably because there are more people ...

Thankful: Chamber celebrates community spirit

When members of the Chamber of Commerce of the Mid-Ohio Valley gathered this week for the group’s annual awards banquet, the business at hand was honoring some terrific individuals and businesses, but also reminding everyone in the room of the tremendous support that comes from a community ...

Fracking: EPA wastes money to miss the point

It took the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency nearly seven years to come up with a final version of its “Assessment of the Potential Impacts of Hydraulic Fracturing for Oil and Gas on Drinking Water Resources.” Despite 666 pages (yes, really) in which the EPA’s own spokeswoman admitted ...

Red Kettles: Salvation Army needs your help

Salvation Army bell ringers have a tough job. They stand in the cold for hours on end, tossing out an occasional “Merry Christmas!” while they keep up the jingling of that little bell— the one that lets the rest of us know it is the season of giving, and an opportunity to do so is right ...

Questions: Answers needed in chlorine leak

Axiall Corp. bore some responsibility for the massive leak of chlorine that occurred in August at its plant in southern Marshall County. That seems clear. It was to the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration. OSHA officials have fined Axiall, which was acquired by Westlake ...

Compromise: Miners need help and they need it now

Everyone in Washington, D.C., seems to want to help retired coal miners whose health insurance and pensions are in jeopardy. But disagreement over how to do it may leave the miners and their families out in the cold. Time is running out. By Jan. 1, health care benefits for an estimated ...