Republican members of the board argued that their Democratic colleagues were out of place in issuing official letters against pending state HB 370, which would require Buncombe County Sheriff Quentin Miller and other sheriffs throughout North Carolina to comply with federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement detainer requests on penalty of removal from office.
The four Democratic board members — Chair Brownie Newman, Vice Chair Jasmine Beach-Ferrara and Commissioners Amanda Edwards and Al Whitesides — have all signed letters asking state officials to withhold their support from the proposal. In February, Democratic Buncombe County Sheriff Quentin Miller announced that his office would no longer honor ICE detainers.
What does transit — and the city’s support of its bus network — mean to Asheville? Xpress talked to residents with different perspectives to better understand Asheville Redefines Transit’s role in the community.
In late May, the N.C. State Bureau of Investigation proposed banning all smokable hemp flower, in addition to more stringent regulation of hemp processing and a host of other precautions. Those changes are now under consideration in the General Assembly, where they could be enacted as part of the N.C. Farm Act of 2019.
“Building a Climate-Resilient Asheville,” debuted during a June 19 meeting of the city’s Sustainability Advisory Committee on Energy and the Environment at The Collider, focuses on practical steps individuals can take to reduce their vulnerability to extreme weather.
Located on Rankin Avenue, Noble Cider’s The Greenhouse will host its grand opening Friday, June 21. Also: SouthEast Crab Feast comes to town; the Mountain Jewish Festival returns; and more.
In the Center for Cultural Preservation’s latest documentary, Guardians of Our Troubled Waters: River Heroes of the South, filmmaker David Weintraub investigates the history of figures such as French Broad crusader Wilma Dykeman and the roles they played in fostering environmental change.
“We used to talk about presidents and members of Congress having permanent campaigns, meaning they never really stop campaigning, and I think the same thing has now trickled down to the state level,” says Chris Cooper, head of Western Carolina University’s Political Science and Public Affairs Department.
The genetically engineered chestnuts contain a gene from wheat that breaks down the main toxin produced by the chestnut blight. If federal regulators sign off on the GE trees, which could happen as early as next year, the foundation could use them freely both in its managed orchards and in actual forest settings.
Most of the 16 public commenters at the June 4 Buncombe County Board of Commissioners hearing on the budget made the case for allocations beyond the roughly $334.52 million in suggested general fund spending. Libraries, schools and nonprofits all approached commissioners for more money.
Asheville VeganFest returns under new leadership. Also: French Broad Chocolate’s Cookies & Creamery celebrates its grand opening; The Block Off Biltmore hosts a hemp food challenge; the 8th annual International Honey Tasting Competition returns; and more.
From 2011-17, the use of e-cigarettes by North Carolina students has increased 894% for high schoolers and 430% among middle schoolers, according to the 2017 North Carolina Youth Tobacco Survey. Nonprofits and student activists are working to educate young users about the potential dangers of the drug trend.
The U.S. Forest Service plans to harvest the majority of trees at 16 sites in Nantahala National Forest beginning next year as part of its Southside Project. Story by Jack Igelman, originally published by Carolina Public Press.
“This is giving us a way to organize at a regional scale around carbon farming and climate resilience,” says Co-operate WNC founder and permaculture educator Friedman. “Us doing little stuff in our backyards is not adding up to climate resilience — I wish it were, but it’s not.”
Community members took the opportunity to discuss the issues surrounding the tourism industry in Asheville and hear a presentation from the WNC Green Party about restructuring of hotel occupancy taxes during an April 24 “Re-Imagine the TDA” public meeting.
Clere calls the effort a “natural outgrowth” from the last of the seven Unitarian Universalist Principles: “respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part.”
“The youngest generation … they are particularly focused on climate change,” says Ashley McDermott, one of the founding members of Sunrise’s Asheville chapter. “They’re the ones who have this emotional connection to it the most. They’re seeing and experiencing it now.”
During a March 14 listening session at The Collider in downtown Asheville about the DEQ’s Clean Energy Plan, a key provision of Gov. Roy Cooper’s Executive Order 80 on clean energy and climate change, many of the roughly 70 Western North Carolina residents in attendance expressed frustration that the state wasn’t doing enough.
Chef and author Susi Gott Séguret invites a poet, a painter, an instrument builder and a chef to consider the meaning of appetite and offers guidance on preparing a spring risotto.
“Oversight in this kind of system — where the board is appointed by a body with no regulatory authority, in a process closed to school employees, families and the community as a whole — is more than a little messed up. It is completely unaccountable, open to all kinds of corruption and anti-democratic, not to mention a lousy use of resources.”
In conjunction with Buncombe County voters and members of Raleigh-based lobbying group Common Cause North Carolina, the mayor will discuss how gerrymandering splits Asheville voters and advocate for nonpartisan districting reform. The press conference takes place at Pack Square Park on Tuesday, March 26, at 10:30 a.m.