A capacity crowd of students attended a candidate forum at Warren Wilson College. Buncombe County Board of Commissioner candidates from left to right: Ellen Frost, Brownie Newman, Christina Merrill. Photo by Petras Barcas

Frost and Merrill debate voting rights at Warren Wilson College

Students at Warren Wilson College delivered a contentious 18 vote win to Ellen Frost in 2012, giving Democrats a one seat majority on the Buncombe County Board of Commissioners. She faces a rematch with Republican opponent Christina Merrill this year for control of District 2, and the two candidates returned to the decisive campus in Swannanoa for an Oct. 29 forum. (Photo by Petras Barcas)

Later today: Commissioners deliberate on funding for YMCA, Mountain Mobility

County commissioners will convene today, Oct. 21, to consider two financial decisions related to county and city institutions. The first concerns the Buncombe County Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA) of Western North Carolina, which is seeking financial assistance for various upgrades and improvement projects, by way of Wisconsin: The organization is seeking the proceeds of […]

Graphics by Lance Wille

Buncombe commissioner candidates fight for control

Four candidates are battling for two seats on the Buncombe County Board of Commissioners. In each case, these contenders hold vastly different views on a range of issues, from taxes and spending to growing the economy and protecting the environment. Also at stake is which party holds a voting majority on the board. Here’s a closer look at those races.

Buncombe County Register of Deeds Drew Reisinger. File photo

Buncombe Register of Deeds Drew Reisinger takes the heat for snow days

It’s been a hard few months for Buncombe County Register of Deeds Drew Reisinger. His office remains under intense scrutiny following the news that Reisinger, an elected official, closed the Deeds office in February during inclement weather and a governor-declared State of Emergency. No other Buncombe County department closed at the time. Buncombe officials later responded to the apparent […]

Commissioner candidates split over teacher pay

“It is the responsibility of the Legislature to fund teacher pay,” District 2 incumbent Democrat Ellen Frost declared at the July 30 Council of Independent Business Owners candidate forum. But though most school funding comes from the state, the county does provide a supplement each year, usually about 20 percent of total school funding. In […]

The race is on: The four candidates who are vying for two seats on the Buncombe County Board of Commissioners faced off for the first time. Photo by Jake Frankel

Buncombe commissioner candidates debate

Differing visions for Buncombe County’s future collided July 30, as the Council of Independent Business Owners hosted the campaign season’s first candidate forum. Four candidates made their case for two seats on the Board of Commissioners. Sparring for District 2 Incumbent Democrat Ellen Frost faces a rematch with Republican Christina Merrill in District 2, which […]

Buncombe County seeks community involvement on new poverty plan

Buncombe County is taking new steps to alleviate poverty, and it’s looking to the community for ideas. Representatives of 22 organizations attended a July 15 Buncombe County Health and Human Services (BCHHS) meeting, where they learned of Buncombe’s new Request for Information (RFI) on poverty remediation. County leaders are interested in community practices to remedy poverty and are seeking information […]

Teal Brown, (pictured right) recently started the Wishbone Tiny Homes construction business with his father, Gerry Brown (left). They're also forming a group that will push for changes in local and state rules to accommodate “implementing tiny homes in Asheville." Photo by Carrie Eidson.

Will tiny homes be Asheville’s next big thing?

The blogosphere is abuzz these days with romantic visions of picturesque miniature dwellings. And a growing number of local advocates say the “tiny home movement” could help achieve a wealth of positive outcomes, from environmental efficiencies to enhanced affordability. Amid the swelling interest, however, many hurdles remain.

Rebecca Knight (left) and Ben Scales (right) each need 7,331 signatures by June 12 to get on the Buncombe district-attorney ballot. Photo of Knight courtesy of Knight. Photo of Scales by Alicia Funderburk

Signature events: Scales, Knight mount petition drives in DA race

In the wake of Todd Williams’ historic victory over District Attorney Ron Moore in the May 6 Democratic primary, two unaffiliated candidates are mounting petition campaigns to get their names on the November ballot. Ben Scales, a local attorney in private practice, and Rebecca Knight, a former Buncombe County District Court judge, are each seeking […]