Since Duke first began using the practice in WNC in 2016, said company spokesperson Jeff Brooks, helicopters under the utility’s direction have deployed herbicides across more than 500 acres. That number may increase in the future as Duke pursues what it calls “an effective alternative” to ground-based management of vegetation along power lines.
Stepp’s Hillcrest Orchard and other area U-pick farms celebrate harvest season.
In her upcoming class Meredith Leigh teaches ways to eliminate food waste. Also: Blue Cheese Festival launches; Ciao Asheville hosts pasta making class; Thanksgiving pre-orders arrive; and plenty more in this week’s Small Bites.
Antony Chiang, the new leader of the $1.5 billion foundation resulting from the sale of Mission Health to HCA Healthcare, shared details on the nonprofit’s plans to support partner organizations with grant writing and engaged an audience of roughly 290 people at the Mission Health/A-B Tech Conference Center around its strategic priorities.
County planning staff members say special and family subdivisions have been abused by developers to skirt regulations on infrastructure and hillside protection. The Board of Commissioners will consider whether to approve new rules to fix those issues during its regular meeting at 5 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 15, in room 326 at 200 College St.
The U.S. Botanical Safety Laboratory’s new gas chromatography equipment and a specially developed testing methodology are poised to bring stability and convenience to Western North Carolina’s burgeoning industrial hemp industry.
Down from 460 homes in November 2014, only 63 houses listed at less than $200,000 were available for sale in Buncombe County as of July 2019. Median rental costs in the area have also increased at a 5.4% annual rate over the same period.
Using the slogan “When in doubt, throw it out,” the statewide Recycle Right NC initiative aims to reduce contamination and improve the economic value of recyclables. Additionally, according to the National Weather Service’s Greenville-Spartanburg office, Western North Carolina is likely in for warmer-than-usual conditions over the foreseeable future.
“Healthy soil and the biodiversity that generates and maintains it is key in simultaneously improving food security, watershed health, preventive medicine and climate mitigation,” says farmer, ethnobotanist and educator Mark Cohen.
Thanks to new grant funding from the Appalachian Regional Commission and Community Foundation of Western North Carolina, says BRNHA Executive Director Angie Chandler, counties in WNC’s High Country are next on the list for craft tourism development and its projected economic benefits.
Organizers reflect on the highs and lows as they consider planning for future events.
Nine residents spoke at the Oct. 1 meeting of the Board of Commissioners about the county’s new agreement with residential waste collection contractor Waste Pro, the second consecutive meeting at which the issue was on the agenda. All of the commenters were critical of the contract, which requires customers to use Waste Pro-provided carts for their trash and recycling.
At the Sept. 17 regular meeting of the Buncombe County Board of Commissioners, Mountain Xpress shared concerns about new fees for the fulfillment of public record requests. In a unanimous vote, the commission authorized the county’s communications office to assess special charges for requests deemed particularly extensive.
In its inaugural year, the conference on WNC’s outdoors industry sold out, with over 250 attendees. This year, it’s expected to more than double in attendance, largely thanks to the efforts of the Growing Outdoors Partnership. The event takes place on Thursday, Oct. 10, at the Crowne Plaza Resort in Asheville.
Beginning next week, contractors will begin installing roadside signs and safety barriers on an approximately 18-mile stretch of Interstate 26, the first step in a $534 million project that will add multiple lanes to the heavily trafficked road. The N.C. Department of Transportation anticipates that construction will wrap up by the summer of 2024.
The report notes that the county approved nearly $19.57 million in capital spending for the last fiscal year, including more than $7.95 million for Buncombe County Public Schools. However, less than $1.12 million has been spent to date on those school needs, with just over $1.87 million spent on other county projects.
Last year, AVL hosted over 1.13 million passengers, an 18.6% jump from 2017’s total and over 67% more travelers than used the airport five years prior. Tina Kinsey, the Greater Asheville Regional Airport Authority’s director of marketing, public relations and air service development, says the airport is now striving to manage its expansion and ensure its long-term path maintains a steady cruising altitude.
The Sept. 28 event will offer a milkweed plant sale, children’s educational activities and a monarch gardening workshop for adults.
As currently drawn, the proposed districts would shift representation for large areas of Buncombe County. A 2011 state law also required that districts for the Buncombe County Board of Commissioners match those of the county’s House representatives. As currently drawn, the maps would move Commissioner Jasmine Beach-Ferrara from District 1 to District 2, shift Al Whitesides from District 1 to District 3 and reassign Amanda Edwards from District 2 to District 1.
“Many artists, creatives, musicians and performers are leaving due to the rapidly increasing cost of living, putting Asheville’s culture at risk,” says Stephanie Moore of the Center for Craft, Creativity and Design. Despite a flurry of concern and initiative, local leaders and developers are finding that providing affordable living and working space for the area’s working artists remains a difficult challenge as property values and rents continue to climb in the city.
Taking place at the Vance Monument from 5:30-7:30 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 20, the rally brings together 15 area organizations in a call for change. The speaker lineup includes Anita Simha with the North Carolina Poor People’s Campaign, Lucia Ibarra of Dogwood Alliance, the Rev. Scott Hardin-Nieri from the Creation Care Alliance, UNC Asheville Assistant Professor Evan Couzo and Sunrise Movement member Shane McCarthy.