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Local News

  • Students get H1N1 vaccine

    The Lancaster County School District has been moving along in providing the H1N1 (swine flu) vaccine to students.

    School board members were given an update of the vaccination schedule at their Jan. 19 meeting.

    In October, district lead nurse Graceann Jones told the board that the H1N1 vaccine would first go to elementary students as well as children at Southside Early Childhood Center, the most vulnerable population. Middle and high school students were next.

    And as of Jan. 19, more than 3,600 district students had been vaccinated.

  • Jackson receives volunteer honor award

    Polly Jackson knew something was going on when she was invited to Thursday night’s Lancaster County Chamber of Commerce’s 54th annual meeting.

    But she had no idea it meant she had won the 2009 Lancaster County Volunteer of the Year award.

    The award, established by the chamber in 1983, recognizes and honors volunteers who give their time and resources to organizations in the county.

  • Family waits for justice in death

    The Whitaker family is still waiting for justice in the death of John “Little John” Whitaker, who was killed by a suspected drunk driver in January 2005.

    Each year, the Whitaker family holds a vigil to remember John.

    They now clean up the sides of Robert H. Kirk Road, where he was killed, as part of the state’s Adopt-A-Highway program.

    John Whitaker’s sister, Lori Whitaker, said the family picked up litter there for the first time on Nov. 7, 2009, and cleaned the roadside again Jan. 23.

    John was killed on Jan. 24, 2005.

  • County Council meets Monday

    Lancaster County Council will hear a presentation from the county’s Community Relations Commission on Monday.

    The Community Relations Commission, which has existed for more than 20 years, identifies pressing issues within the county and acts as a sounding board for community members. This is the second board to meet with council this year.

    County Airport Commission chairman Doug Barnes began the process in January.

    Council is making an effort to meet with all the county’s boards and commissions this year.

  • Six district schools make federal AYP standard

    Six schools in the Lancaster County School District are on the latest list of schools to meet adequate yearly progress, or AYP, standards under the federal No Child Left Behind Act.

    But 13 district schools did not make AYP in 2009.

    The S.C. Department of Education released data for 2009 last week.

    District schools that made AYP in 2009 are Discovery School, Erwin Elementary, Heath Springs Elementary, Kershaw Elementary, McDonald Green Elementary and North Elementary schools.

  • Inmate to face escape charge

    A prisoner helping Lancaster County sheriff’s investigators escaped briefly Tuesday as he assisted them in searching for stolen guns.

    According to a Lancaster County Sheriff’s Office press release, Raymond Lewis Bailey, 18, of 582 Fork Hill Road, Heath Springs, was with two investigators in the Drywood Avenue area when he tried to run from them about 9:45 a.m. Tuesday.

    Bailey had been taken from the Lancaster County Detention Center by two investigators to recover guns they say Bailey had stolen during a burglary he had committed earlier in the week.

  • Habitat for Humanity exceeds fundraising goal

    As the end of 2009 neared, Traci Carnes worried about the fate of the county’s Habitat for Humanity chapter.

    Carnes, executive director for the local Habitat affiliate, which helps residents build affordable housing, said the organization needed to raise $15,000 during the last two months of 2009 to continue its work in Lancaster County.

    By the middle of December, Habitat had received $14,400, but was still waiting for the final $600. That’s when Carnes petitioned Lancaster’s Rotary Club, where she said something miraculous happened.

  • What will new courtrooms look like?

    As workers prepare to construct flooring at the new county courthouse facilities, county officials are looking for input about the building’s courtrooms.

    On display at the county’s Temporary Judicial Center off S.C. 9 Bypass are plywood mock-ups of the large and small courtrooms, which will be built in the new county courthouse on Main Street in Lancaster.

  • Ice in weather forecast

    Lancaster County could see a “significant icing event” this weekend.

    The National Weather Service placed Lancaster County under a winter storm watch Thursday afternoon. That was expected to change to a warning on Saturday. A winter storm watch means there is a potential for significant snow, sleet or ice accumulations that may impact travel.

  • Water tower leak + freezing temps = ICE HOUSE

    HEATH SPRINGS – When Josh Gates went to sleep Saturday night, he lived in a brick house.

    When his brother, Justin, woke him up about 7:30 a.m. Sunday, he found that his house had been transformed into an igloo of sorts.

    Gates, 24, said on more than one occasion, water has come out of the top of the water tower next to the house.

    “It’s like a big waterfall shooting over the house,” Gates said.

    When it happened some time early Sunday morning, the water cascaded over the house and then froze.