While overall hotel revenue was down more than 27% year-over-year in September, the latest month for which data is available, overall vacation rental sales that month increased by about 55% year-over-year, according to Explore Asheville interim CEO Chris Cavanaugh.
No Buncombe County commissioners addressed why the subsidy was necessary for the company to make its investment during their Nov. 17 meeting. P&W is a division of Raytheon Technologies, a Fortune 50 company with approximately $10 billion in cash reserves.
For many WNC nonprofits, business support and partnerships comprise a significant part of their budgets. And while Asheville has a comparatively large number of nonprofits per capita, area businesses rise to the need.
Under a proposed economic development incentive agreement, Buncombe County taxpayers would subsidize the division of military contractor Raytheon Technologies, which made over $77 billion last fiscal year, to the tune of $27 million.
Ten entrepreneurs of color with existing businesses have been selected for Mountain BizWorks’ inaugural Catalyst Cohort. Plus, business openings and updates.
According to the Opportunity Insights Economic Tracker, the employment rate among Buncombe County workers making $27,000 or less per year was 30.2% lower in mid-September than at the start of 2020. By comparison, jobs making over $60,000 annually were down just 3.4% on the year.
According to a presentation available before Board of Commissioners meeting on Thursday, Nov. 5, 67 lodging businesses have been delinquent in reporting or remitting occupancy taxes due March through September, with an additional 29 establishments yet to report at least one month of taxes during that period.
Three years out from the closure of the state’s only USDA-inspected plant for independent farmers, more than 200 North Carolina farms are processing their own poultry. But due to the extra labor and time requirements, many producers statewide are still putting less pastured poultry on the market now than they were in 2017.
“We are showing women how to see their land as an asset and how to make it work economically and to see that future,” explains Aimee Tomcho, a Burnsville-based conservation biologist for the National Audubon Society and leader of Western North Carolina’s ForestHer chapter.
A look at the online rosters of agents at the largest real estate firms in Buncombe County suggests that women make up a majority of brokers here also, although many top-level jobs are still held by men.
Marla Tambellini, Explore Asheville’s vice president of marketing, shared an industry consultant’s view that “recovery is inevitable” during the Buncombe County Tourism Development Authority’s annual meeting on Oct. 20.
Asheville native Kalesha Ruth returns to the mountains to start her own used car dealership specializing in low down payments. To her knowledge, she’s the first Black women to own a car dealership in Western North Carolina.
The news stunned Asheville and Western North Carolina, where Mission Health System Inc. was the area’s largest employer, its main healthcare provider, and a long-time source of civic pride. Seemingly out of the blue, Mission’s directors publicly announced on March 21, 2018, that they had voted to sell the 133-year-old nonprofit to HCA Healthcare.
Black Folks Camp Too founder Earl B. Hunter Jr. said new marketing collaborations would help him develop more interest in camping among the Black community. And later this month, Asheville-based artist Matthew Willey will begin work on a giant mural of honey bees at Hendersonville’s Hands On! Children’s Museum.
Union leaders expect a struggle with HCA but say Asheville nurses are “ready to engage in that struggle.”
Labor scholar Bruce Nissen warns that HCA is signaling “not accepting the results.” But he predicts the hospital company can’t succeed after a landslide union win.
Board member Rick Livingston, who made the motion to deny the recommendation, said the proposed SE Asphalt plant’s location in a “very residential area” off the Spartanburg Highway was incompatible with both the county’s comprehensive plan and East Flat Rock’s community plan.
Despite high unemployment and ongoing uncertainties related to the pandemic, Asheville’s real estate market is booming. Local agents and lenders say a majority of their new clients are leaving densely populated cities as they seek lower housing costs and greater insulation from COVID-19.
“Folks are really starting to get weary of the pattern of hurricanes and extreme weather and are looking for more stable environments such as Western North Carolina,” says local real estate agent John Haynes, about clients seeking to move to the region from coastal states like Florida, New Jersey and Texas.
President Donald Trump, accompanied by his daughter, Ivanka, and U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, toured Flavor 1st Growers and Packers in Mills River on Aug. 24 to see firsthand how local farmers are working to feed individuals in need during the COVID-19 pandemic.
In April, Pardee UNC Health Care notified MountainCare that it would no longer donate the use of the 6,000-square-foot building that houses MountainCare’s Henderson County adult day program. MountainCare now must move out by the end of the year to allow Pardee to reuse or sell the building and seeks a free or low-cost space where the program can continue operating.