BIG DECISIONS: Asheville voters will weigh in on three separate bond measures: $32 million for transportation projects, including road repaving, sidewalks, bus shelters, traffic-calming measures and greenways; $25 million for affordable housing, including $15 million to repurpose city-owned land for affordable housing and $10 million for the city’s affordable housing trust fund; and $17 million for parks and recreation projects. Graphic assembled by Scott Southwick

Asheville leaders and organizati­ons weigh in on bond choice

City-sponsored early polling indicated that a solid majority of Asheville voters say they will vote for the proposed $74 million city bond referendum on this year’s general election ballots, and far more local groups and organizations have lined up to support the bond than to criticize it. As with any issue, however, opinion is mixed.

BOOM TOWN: Shown here around 1929, Pack Square at that time was ringed by the 1926 Asheville City Hall, the 1903 and 1928 Buncombe County courthouses, Pack Memorial Library, Legal Building, Central Bank & Trust, Commerce Building, Westall Building and Jackson Building. Photo by George Masa, provided courtesy of the North Carolina Collection, Pack Memorial Public Library

Asheville’s bond fears: The legacy of a financial nightmare

Has Asheville recovered from the trauma of its municipal debt crisis, which spanned the years between 1930 and 1976? The debt had a profound impact on Asheville’s development, its cityscape and, lastingly, its appetite for municipal debt. This year’s $74 million bond referendum will put the city’s confidence to the test when it asks voters to choose whether it’s time for the city to borrow again to finance growth.

THE FACES OF LEADERSHIP: In an effort to provide examples of women in leadership roles, local events like Dixon Hughes Goodman’s Oct. 6 Women Forward forum are bringing local female leaders to the forefront to share their experiences and encourage young women to follow their paths. The forum featured, from left, DHG’s Tricia Wilson, Mission Health’s Taylor Foss, the National Centers for Environmental Information’s Margarita Gregg with event moderator Kendra Ferguson. Photo by Emma Grace Moon

She’s the boss: Female business leaders provide examples for the future

As more women work toward leadership roles in the local workforce, female business leaders and local organizations are working to provide the encouragement and resources necessary to help them attain equity and advancement in the workplace. Sharing their wealth of experiences, these community leaders are hoping they can lay the groundwork for the next generation of successful women professionals.

The Buncombe County Board of Commissioners held a public hearing on the proposed tax schedule during its meeting on Tuesday, Oct. 4. The commission chambers was nearly empty for the hearing and two people spoke.

Public hearing on property tax schedule draws two comments; commission­ers move forward with selling $7.8 million in unused land

Commissioners held a public hearing on the proposed tax schedule that drew two speakers. It also moved ahead with trying to sell five parcels of land, including 137-acres on Ferry Road; the one-time potential site of Deschutes Brewery’s expansion.

KNOT IN MY CITY: A growing number of Asheville residents and appointed officials are expressing concerns over the city’s current tree ordinances, which they describe as incomplete or not strong enough to protect mature trees like the sycamores cut down at the Country Club of Asheville (above) recently as part of the golf course’s ongoing renovation project. Photo special to Xpress

If a tree falls in the city: Residents push to update Asheville’s tree ordinances

Citizen activists, members of Asheville’s Tree Commission and city officials are exploring the possibility of increased oversight on how trees are managed within the city limits. But with a lack of definition in key parts of the city’s policy, and obstacles at the state level impeding regulations on private property, updating Asheville’s tree ordinances is proving to be an uphill battle.

AVIATION CAREERS: students and faculty from the A-B Tech aviation program were present for Council's recognition of careers in aviation. Photo by Virginia Daffron

Asheville Council to review more building projects citywide, especially hotels

Asheville City Council set itself up for a heavier workload with its decision to move forward on changing city ordinances to reduce the size of development projects Council will review. If the current pace of development continues, more projects will come before Council for approval. Council also signaled its intent to review all but the smallest hotel projects in response to concerns that hotel development has gotten out of hand.

SOCIAL SOLUTIONS: Senior Police Officer Doug Sheehan, along with others members of the Asheville Police Department Housing Unit, attend a Johnston Elementary School ice cream social. Local officers devote time and energy to socializing and trying to build relationships in the face of broad disillusionment in black communities. Photo courtesy of APD

Culture clash: Facing up to Asheville’s troubled police-community relations

The task of establishing and/or re-establishing trust between vulnerable communities — especially people of color — and the Asheville Police Department will be a challenging one. And especially in the wake of controversial police use of force over the summer, there is vocal criticism of the department. But the way Chief Tammy Hooper sees it, the APD must rise to that challenge.