HENRY COUNTY, VA – The Martinsville Bulletin has once again been corrected for false reporting by local government officials.
On Friday, Henry County Administration sent out a press release stating that the Martinsville Bulletin's story regarding September 28’s Henry County Board of Supervisors meeting “is riddled with inaccuracies and false statements.”
The story published on Friday states that the board voted 6-0 to deny a request from local fire departments for extra funding.
“This is categorically untrue. The board listened to and accepted the comments regarding additional funding. There was no motion made and no vote taken,” the press release said.
The board will do what it usually does with large financial requests outside of the county budget cycle – it will consider the request and the appropriation of the requested funds, according to the release.
The Bulletin's story also said that a local citizen spoke to the board during the meeting and criticized the board’s action on the fire departments’ funding request.
County administration said this is also untrue.
The release said the local citizen actually praised the board for its help in purchasing a new fire truck for his volunteer department.
“It is hard to understand how things that never happened get reported as fact. We sincerely hope this isn’t a case of a newspaper, for whatever reason, simply making things up, putting them in print, and moving on to the next story,” the press release reads.
County government said that media outlets have a responsibility to cover local events and hold local officials accountable.
“We feel we have the same responsibility when it comes to correcting head-scratching factual errors by the media. Unfortunately, many readers already have seen these mistakes in print and online and take them as facts. That cannot be completely repaired,” they added.
Officials said they will request a correction from the newspaper as soon as possible.
“We also request that correction be placed on the front page of the newspaper, where the original story appears. Mistakes this egregious should be corrected in the same space where they were made.”