For the Record - Southern Virginia

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Bassett Furniture Industries Inc. will close its fiberboard facility in Bassett by the end of the year with a loss of 45 jobs. The move was made because of the decline in demand for the medium-density fiberboard. (News release)

Danville was named to the 2010 Smart21 list by the Intelligent Community Forum. The list highlights 21 communities in 13 countries recognized for facilitating broadband growth. Two other Virginia communities, Bristol and Arlington County, made the list. (Danville Register & Bee)

Danville Community College opened its wood products technology lab. The facility will train students in advanced wood manufacturing as well as partner with local employers for training workers. (Danville Register & Bee)

The Danville Regional Foundation announced plans to fund a regional analysis of the impacts of uranium mining. The state is pursuing its own study, but the foundation seeks an independent socioeconomic examination of the impact of mining and long-term waste management on the area. Virginia Uranium Inc. has long sought approval to mine and mill a 119-million-pound uranium ore deposit at Coles Hill in Pittsylvania County. (Danville Register & Bee)

JTI Leaf Services, a Japanese tobacco firm, will open a facility in Danville to procure and process American tobacco. The company will hire 39 full-time and 150 seasonal employees. The 256,000-square-foot facility will serve as the company’s head office, as well as a receiving and storage operation. (Danville Register & Bee)

Martinsville launched a Wi-Fi wireless Internet network in the downtown area for businesses and consumers. Much of the uptown area is covered, including the municipal building, post office and New College Institute. The service will have a three-hour limit for users within a 24-hour period. (The Martinsville Bulletin)

New College Institute of Martinsville plans to offer a bachelor’s degree in entrepreneurship within a few years. NCI seeks $150,000 from the state to get the program off the ground. The Martinsville-Henry County area has lost 12,000 manufacturing jobs since 1997. (The Martinsville Bulletin)

Stanley Furniture Co. plans to announce layoffs by the end of the year and will also offer a voluntary early-retirement program. Declining sales are fueling the move. The layoffs are expected to heavily impact the company’s Stanleytown manufacturing and headquarters. (The Associated Press)

Virginia plans to establish a new state park in Henry County. The park would lie along with Mayo River, across from a North Carolina state park. About 342 acres have been bought for $1.4 million. No estimates are available about how much land will eventually be acquired. After land acquisition is complete, plans will be submitted to the General Assembly for funding the development phases. (The Associated Press)

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