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Aiken Standard (Newspaper) - February 15, 2011, Aiken, South Carolina Aiken City Council witt discuss fluoride in City water 13A Body of arson suspect found Aiken man suspected of starting fire at wife’s home was found dead in second fire in Beaufort County By ANNA DOLIANITIS Staff writer A 41-year-old Aiken man suspected of starting a fire at his estranged wife’s Aiken home Sunday morning was found dead in a second fire in Beaufort County early Sunday afternoon. Authorities believe that around IO a.m., Joe Travis Pryor of 512 Old Dibble Road in Aiken set fire to the home at 179 Lewis Lane in Aiken where Amy Pryor, 41, resided. When Aiken County Sheriffs Office deputies arrived, firefighters were already on the scene and the house was fully involved. Deputies entered the house, determining that the fire. which began in the master bedroom, was intentionally set, and Joe Pryor was suspected of arson, according to Sheriffs Office spokesman Capt. Troy Elwell. Nobody was inside the Aiken home at the time, including Amy Pryor, Elwell said. Amy Pryor was reportedly out of town at the time of the fire, neighbors told sheriff s deputies. Elwell said he assumed Joe Pryor knew that Amy Pryor was not rn the home at the time that he allegedly set the fire, since the fire was set from within the house. The couple was in the process of divorcing, and Joe Please see FIRES, page 12A Aiken man suspected of starting fire found dead in Beaufort County fire By HALEY HUGHES Staff writer Who should pay for background checks? Recreation Commission wants the County to pay full cost of background checks for volunteers I WHAT IS THE ISSUE? Aiken County Recreation Commission will recommend to Council that the County pay the full cost of national criminal offense background checks conducted on those who volunteer as coaches and instructors. ■ WHY? Aiken County Porks, Recreation and Tourism runs background checks on all volunteer coaches and instructors. I COST? Currently, the cost of the screening per person is $18 - $8 is covered by registration fees and the remaining $10 is paid by each coach and volunteer. The Recreation Commission voted to recommend the full cost now be paid from registration fees. I WHAT DO YOU THINK? Do you think the County should pay the full cost of criminal background checks for recreation volunteers? Comment on this story at, write to Opinions, Aiken Standard, Box 4S6, Aiken S.C. 29802 or e-moil [email protected] The Aiken County Recreation Commission has recommended that the County assume the filii cost of national criminal offense background checks conducted on those who volunteer as coaches and instructors with Parks, Recreation and Tourism. Aiken County Council will hear first reading of the ordinance today at its 7 p.m. meeting. Parks, Recreation and Tourism has run background checks on volunteer coaches and instructors for some years now, said County Administrator Clay Killian. The cost of the screening per person is SIH - SH is covered by registration fees and the remaining SIO is paid by each coach and volunteer. The Recreation Commission unanimously voted earlier this month to recommend the full cost now be paid from registration fees. “We felt like it would be more of an incentive to these people because we go out and actively recruit people to coach," said Parks, Recreation and Tourism Director Brad Barnes. The department’s soccer ami baseball programs just kicked off, and Barnes said staff requested that 25 background checks be completed. lf that number is extrapolated to the filii calendar year, he said roughly IOO background checks are conducted each yew. "In our program, they can’t coach if Oley don't have a background check," be added. The national criminal offense checks must comply with the standards established by the National Recreation and Parks Association (NRPA). The NRPA’s recommended criteria for volunteer exclusion covers all sex offenses and all felony violence offenses regardless of the amount of time since the offense; all other fel ony offenses within the past IO years; all misdemeanor PIMM mw COUNTY, page 12A item (atolls Catharine Abshire Williams, Jackson Fannie Mae Riley, Aiken Russell Jennings, Saluda Edward Isaac Salley Joe Travis Pryor, Aiken Joseph "Joe" Young, Aiken Jane L Morris, Aiken Deaths and Funerals I CA Calendar SC Nation/World UA Classifieds 4B Obituaries 6A Crossword JC Opinions 13A Comics 3C Puzzles 4C Dear Abby 4C Sports IB Horoscopes .... ^ TV Listings 2C Markets 3B Movie Listings SC mum. Tuesday February 15,2011 TV,-!—, JI— lflln iratin mr ioo3ys neatner CHign I «■ f 35° Full forecast! 6C ^ our Local Source Vol. 145, No. 46    Since    I    8(i7 mmmmmmmmmmmmmmtmm WWW.aikenStandard.COm \ 50* Chu: Budget is part of plan to win future By ANNA DOLIANITIS Staff writer The U.S. Department of Energy's $29.5 billion budget proposed by President Barack Obama for Fiscal Year 2012 invests in what is needed and eliminates what is not, Secretary of Energy Steven Chu said Monday in a press briefing. The FY 2012 budget, Chu said, is part of an administration-wide plan to win the future by “out-innovating, out-educating and out-building the rest of the world,” while at the same time cutting programs and expenses. “The United States faces a choice today: Will we lead in innovation and out-compete the rest of the world or will we fall behind?’ said Chu. “To lead tire world in clean energy, we must act now. We can’t afford not to. Through our investments, we are lay- Chu "The US. faces a choice today: Will we lead in innovation and out-compete the rest of the world or will we fall behind? ” Secretary' of Energy Steven Chu Putting on the brakes after two years of spending increases, President Barack Obama unveiled a $3.7T budget plan. 18A mg the groundwork for the nation’s future prosperity and security. While we are investing in areas that are critical to our future, we are also rooting out programs that aren’t needed and making hard choices to tighten our belt. Additionally, we are improving our management wd operations so we function more efficiently and effectively.” The budget request includes $3.2 billion for energy efficiency and renewable energy programs, $36 billion in loan guarantee authority to help jump start the domestic nuclear industry and $5.4 billion for the ()ffice of Science to expand investment in basic energy sciences, advanced scientific computing and biological and environmental sciences. Pleas® tee CHU, peg* 12A mgmm IIL '<QU Rnnmr - HAppy M    ^    c; -.JI ■ r. . *. • aaff.',., i wjfc*:.    ‘    . VvrS. T''    -• !** -T. Staff photo by Amy Ban ton A spacial aerial Valentine flew throughout Aiken Monday. Aerial surprise perfect end to Valentines Day dinner By AMY BANTON Staff writer One local man got a Valentine surprise on the wings of love Monday. Sondra ( are sent a message of admuation to her boyfriend Robbie Goldman by plane through Atlanta Aerial Billboards & Banners “Everyone I told what I was doing thought it was a cool idea,” ( are said. “I just thought it would he some-; thing different, something ova of the ordinary.” It was a huge surprise | for Goldman, something be | certainly did not expect, The • plane took off around 12:50 t p.m. Monday from the Aiken Municipal Airport. The couple was having a lunch of steak, lobster and shrimp prepared by Care at his home when the plane flew os er. At first, Goldman was concerned that a plane was flying unusually low. “I heard a plane coming over, and I thought it was going to land in the yard,” he said. At that moment, Goldman saw a banner trailing behind the yellow plane that read “I V you Robbie - I lappy Valentine’s Day!” in 7-foot tall letters. '’Words can't really describe it,” Goldman said when trying to explain how he felt w hen he saw it. Neighbors and co-workers from his business, Gold- "It was exciting to see ...It was something I will definitely remember for the rest of my life. ” Robbie Goldman Aerial valentine recipient man’s True Value, which the plane also flew over, called to ask about the flying valentine. Please see VALENTINE, page 12A Changing wrecker rotation in N.A. raising frustration levels By PHYLLIS BRITT North Augusta bureau % A change in policy that makes it possible for IO com panics iii the CSRA to be on a rotation list for towing calls at North Augusta wrecks instead of the original iota has raised die frustration level of some local businesses. Atter an aborted attempt on Friday to meet with representative* of the local wrecker sen ices to discuss a new policy, officials witii North Augusta Department of Public Safety beld a public meeting on Monday afternoon. Larry Spence w uh Total Automotive and Sherry and Jeff Corbett with Wayne’s Automotive all wanted to know why the biggest rule in place had been removed The previous North Augusta city policy limned inc rotation list to companies with a place of business inside the city limits. The new policy would open the fist to any companies in the ami who comply w id) regulations set forth by Public Safety W recker companies rotate un a weekly basis as the "first responder” on accident calls - unless the vehicle owner specifies a particular company. Public Safety Chief John Thomas insisted tile department couldn’t control the location of North Augusta (bor denng un another state). "We can’t deny those companies from coming in,” he said Sherry Corbett pointed out her business had respected the guidelines opening a business in the city limits, complying with all the planning and zoning regulations as wwll as tile NADPS regulations “We went by your rules, and now you’ve thrown them out (he window," agreed Jeff Corbett. Thomas said part of the motivation came when the number of wrecker services dropped to three within the city limits. “But you have four,” insisted Spence, who also noted the tuning ol the change, lie pointed OIA last October he voluntarily went oft the rotation list until he could get his equipment back un track. “When I called to get buck PtoaM arn WRECKER, page IZA ;