Members will first hear an overview of Asheville’s affordable housing policy and funding options. The second half of the work session is slated for a review of upcoming projects and an update on the status of the city’s Affordable Housing Bond.
While county relief has heretofore been available only in the form of low-interest loans, businesses will now be able to seek grants of $5,000 to hire or rehire employees at a living wage. Staff had previously believed such a grant program to be illegal but had since received updated guidance from the UNC School of Government.
Mountain Xpress’ 2020 Give!Local campaign to raise funds and awareness for 44 community nonprofits wrapped up on Dec. 31 as the most successful to date. The sixth annual effort saw 570 individual donors give a total of $233,564, a 65% increase over the previous year’s total of $141,207 from 400 donors. 2020’s impact was boosted […]
The Buncombe County Board of Commissioners and other supporters say jobs at the aerospace manufacturing plant will provide opportunities for workers to improve their standards of living. Critics say those wages are not worth the moral cost: Bolstering a military-industrial complex that causes deaths half a world away and eats up government funds better spent on other needs.
Market managers and vendors at the markets participating in the Appalachian Sustainable Agriculture Project’s Double SNAP initiative, which matches Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits dollar-for-dollar on edible items, saw SNAP transactions nearly triple from 2019 to 2020, and 80% of responding vendors said they’d experienced sales growth due to the program.
As of Jan. 21, more than half a million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine had been distributed throughout the state, although supplies remain far lower than demand.
Retired Rear Adm. Richard Houck of Transylvania County, attorney Fred Jones of Macon County and Bishop José McLoughlin of Henderson County will join the board of Western North Carolina’s largest nonprofit as Buncombe County’s Dr. John Ball departs. The change fulfills requirements stipulated in N.C. Attorney General Josh Stein’s approval of Mission Health’s sale to HCA Healthcare.
COVID-19 vaccination initiatives announced by the county include a drive-thru site for second doses at A. C. Reynolds High School and a waitlist for first-dose vaccination appointments. The waitlist will replace a system that requires residents to schedule appointments directly as vaccines became available.
The Mortimer Trails project expands access for mountain bikers and hikers to meet increased demand despite limited federal funding for recreation in National Forests.
As Asheville takes steps to reckon with its long history of systemic racism and economic inequity, local business owners are wondering what impacts the city’s ambitious initiatives will have on them.
The state grant for Buncombe’s Low-Income Energy Assistance Program, funded as part of the first federal COVID-19 relief package, will be considered at the Tuesday, Jan. 19, meeting of the county Board of Commissioners.
The $600 checks represent the first federal assistance many in WNC have received to cope with the economic fallout of the pandemic since the first coronavirus relief package was signed into law by President Donald Trump on March 27.
When Emma Strickland learned she was pregnant with her second child, she started looking for an alternative to a hospital birth. She found it at the WNC Birth Center. The center is open during the COVID pandemic but has had to scale back on some of its related services. Ironically, that’s led to a shortage of income at a time when women like Strickland find themselves increasingly drawn to a birth center.
The Asheville-based nonprofit Southern Appalachian Highlands Conservancy’s work included both valuable wildlife habitats, such as the Wiles Creek and Little Rock Creek preserves, and prime farmland at risk of development. Sandy Hollar Farms in Buncombe County and Bowditch Bottoms in Yancey County were among the agricultural projects completed in 2020.
“We recognize that it’s not a perfect system and the demand is quite high,” said Stacie Saunders, Buncombe County’s public health director, at a Jan. 12 special meeting called to address local vaccination efforts. “We just want to reiterate that we will not have sufficient supply of vaccine for a very long time, so it is likely that we will still hear frustration and concerns about being able to get an appointment.”
Since 1981, Oralene Simmons, founder and chair of The Martin Luther King Jr. Association of Asheville and Buncombe County, has watched the organization’s annual prayer breakfast grow from 50 or so attendees to several thousand. Now in its 40th year, the association is preparing for its latest gathering. But unlike in the past, the 2021 […]
Currently, the body reviews promotional criteria for Asheville police and fire staff and hears certain employee grievances. If adopted, the rules would outline a two-part test to determine if a dispute rises to the level of a CSB hearing.
Xpress is now accepting submissions for the 2021 Kids Issue! The theme: “My Great Idea.” Deadline is Friday, Jan. 29.
In this year’s Humor Issue, we return to Billy Borne’s cartoons. Though his work was published in The Asheville Citizen for over 20 years, our focus is on 1921. As his illustrations exhibit, the Roaring 20s did not actually kick off with a bang but rather an economic recession-turned-depression. By the end of 1921, however, […]
Seven North Carolina counties now offer paid days off to care for a new child or an ailing family member.
Members will hear public comment on a proposed 130,000-square-foot warehouse and distribution facility in Enka — a plan that previously drew criticism from thousands of community members worried the facility would mean the demise of the 139-foot Enka Clock Tower.