WHEELING — A closing West Virginia hospital owes the city of Wheeling more than $415,000.
According to news sources , Wheeling City Manager Robert Herron says Ohio Valley Medical Center owes almost $47,900 for fire service and $368,000 in parking fees to subsidize use of a city garage.
Herron said city officials thought they had negotiated a payment plan. Then the hospital announced it will close within three months.
The hospital’s CEO didn’t respond to a request for comment.
Gov. Jim Justice says he’s asked his administration to see what it can do to prevent the closure.
The East Ohio Regional Hospital in Martins Ferry, Ohio is planned for closure in the same timeframe.
The hospitals say they’ve lost $37 million in the last two years, citing declining volume and reimbursements.
2 ambulance first
responders die in crash
SUMMERSVILLE — Two first responders have died in a crash involving their ambulance and a semi-truck in West Virginia.
Jan-Care Ambulance spokesman Paul Seamann said the early morning crash involving one of the company’s ambulances happened Saturday, killing the two emergency medical technicians inside. Authorities say the crash occurred in Nicholas County.
Seamann says there was no patient on board and the two EMTs were returning to their station from a hospital-to-hospital transfer in Morgantown.
ignored red flags when filling
CHARLESTON — Federal prosecutors say they’ve suspended a West Virginia pharmacy’s registration for improperly dispensing prescription drugs.
U.S. Attorney Mike Stuart announced the suspension against Oak Hill Hometown Pharmacy last week.
Stuart says the pharmacy filled about 2,000 prescriptions for a widely-abused drug called Subutex over a three-year period despite red flags that the pills were being misused. He says more than half of the prescriptions came from an out-of-state clinic and that almost all prescriptions were paid for in cash.
Stuart says the pharmacy constitutes an ``imminent danger to the public health or safety.’’
The Drug Enforcement Administration says Subutex is used to treat opioid addiction but has gained popularity as a drug of abuse.
City to forgive
tickets in exchange for school supplies
SPENCER — A West Virginia city is offering to forgive unpaid parking tickets in exchange for school supplies.
The city of Spencer announced the deal on Facebook.
It says it will clear the parking tickets if a person brings an item from a list of supplies for elementary, middle and high schools. Some of the items include crayons, pencils, pens, loose-lead paper and Clorox Wipes.
Supplies can be dropped off at the city’s municipal building.
Multiple tickets can be excused if a person brings one item per ticket.
Tickets issued through Friday are eligible for the program.
stable after gunfight
5POCAHONTAS COUNTY — Authorities say a West Virginia state trooper is in stable condition after being shot in a gunfight where he killed a suspect.
The West Virginia State Police released details on Trooper First Class J.M. Tallman’s condition last week. The department has also identified the suspect as 43-year-old William Biggs.
Officials say Biggs first fired a rifle at a Pocahontas County sheriff after a car crash. Biggs then shot Tallman in the abdomen as officers searched the woods. Tallman returned fire, killing Biggs.
Tallman was airlifted to a hospital after the shooting.
State health centers to get $910,000 for upgrades
CHARLESTON — The federal government is providing $910,000 to help 26 health centers in West Virginia improve technology access, patient information security and patient care quality.
U.S. Sens. Joe Manchin and Shelley Moore Capito announced the funding from the Health Resources and Services Administration.
Capito says in a statement that many people in rural West Virginia rely on community health centers as a primary health care source.
Man charged for
trying to steal police car while handcuffed
CHARLESTON — Police in West Virginia say a man who tried to steal a police cruiser while handcuffed has been charged.
Criminal complaints filed in Charleston say Blake King is facing two misdemeanors and a felony after the incident.
The filings say an officer first arrested King and put him in the back of a squad car for giving a fake name after he was stopped for harassing people in an emergency room.
King then jumped into the driver’s seat and tried to press the accelerator while twisting his arms around to grab the steering wheel.
The complaint says the officers pulled King from the car, with one officer punching him in the face twice after King tried to kick him.
It’s unclear if the 29-year-old King has a lawyer.
Police arrest 8 after raid finds drugs,
HUNTINGTON — Police say they arrested eight people and found drugs and a stolen car during a raid of a house in West Virginia.
The Huntington Police Department says a SWAT team and members of a drug task force searched the home last week.
Authorities found fentanyl, heroin, cash, a gun as well as scales and other items commonly used to package and sell drugs.
Multiple people were charged with drug-related crimes and others were arrested for having active warrants.
Police also found a stolen vehicle behind the house that was involved in a hit-and-run crash in the area. It was towed for further investigation.