Year In Review: Plastic bags and public parks among top environmen­tal priorities

It’s no secret that locals and visitors alike fall in love with Western North Carolina largely because of its natural amenities. For some organizations, preserving the region’s environment is of paramount importance, as seen in April when MountainTrue, alongside several other local organizations, proposed a ban on single-use plastic bags in Asheville. The initiative garnered […]

State lawmakers shroud open-records requiremen­ts

Local officials are still reeling over a little paragraph in the state’s 625-page budget in which lawmakers exempted themselves from public record requirements. Section 27.7 of the 2023 Appropriations Act says that current and former legislators “shall not be required to reveal or to consent to reveal any document, supporting document, drafting request, or information request made or received by that legislator while a legislator.”

Council delays vote on Arden developmen­t

Asheville City Council voted unanimously Nov. 14 to postpone a vote on a proposed 279-unit apartment complex in Arden over concerns around a shortage of family-sized units and lack of renewable energy. The project was unable to get a formal recommendation to Council from the Planning and Zoning Commission at its Oct. 4 meeting; however, the developer asked to continue with the zoning approval process.

WTF: Housing vouchers and assistance programs

Finding affordable housing has become a formidable challenge for many Asheville residents. However, housing vouchers can bring rent down to a manageable amount. In the latest edition of Xpress’ WTF feature – short for “Want the Facts?” – we explore the application process and eligibility requirements for housing vouchers and other forms of housing assistance.