Buncombe County seal

Buncombe proposes $815K for COVID-19 housing, utility assistance

Public comment on a grant application for federal coronavirus relief identified help with rent, mortgage and utility bills as the county’s greatest need. The Board of Commissioners is set to vote on a plan that would direct the aid, which will likely not be available until January, toward that purpose at its regular meeting of Tuesday, Oct. 6.

Health in brief: Asheville Yoga Center hits the market, website tracks impact of opioid crisis in Buncombe

Asheville Yoga Center, a pillar of the city’s emerging “wellness district” in the area around South Liberty Street, is up for sale. The transition represents the next phase of changes brought about by the divorce of the center’s founders, Stephanie and Sunny Keach, according to Melissa Driver, the company’s general manager. Also in brief: prostate cancer screening tips for men, new programs and services and a new website that illustrates the impact of the opioid epidemic on the local community.

Human traffickin­g exploits vulnerable population­s

Human trafficking takes many forms. According to a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services fact sheet, it can include not only sex for money involving coercion or fraud but also any kind of involuntary servitude. And while most folks associate trafficking with children, two-thirds of the more than 200 North Carolina cases reported to the National Human Trafficking Hotline last year were adults. The Second Annual Anti-Trafficking Summit, slated for Sept. 15-19, is co-sponsored by Mars Hill University and Life 107 Ministries. This year’s summit will be online-only due to COVID-19.

Abigail Joyce samping water for PFAS

State researcher­s release first reports on PFAS in WNC water

None of the systems that serve the Xpress coverage area exceeded the Environmental Protection Agency’s advisory limit for the so-called “forever chemicals.” Nor did any system have more than 10 ppt of any individual PFAS, the level at which the N.C. Department of Environmental Quality has required Chemours Co. to provide water filtration.