A cooperative effort by Conserving Carolina, state and local governments, other nonprofits and the general public is gradually developing the Hickory Nut Gorge State Trail in and around the rugged terrain that lies just beyond Buncombe County’s southeastern border. In late April, a new 2.5-mile trail section is scheduled to open.
A second reading of the amended ordinance could come before the commissioners for a vote at the board’s Tuesday, April 20, meeting.
The team at Gibbins Advisors wants to hear every complaint raised about Mission Health — but they can only call noncompliance on concerns directly tied to the 15 core commitments HCA Healthcare agreed to uphold when the hospital conglomerate purchased the Mission system in 2019.
“Whether you’re a private entity or are providing a public service, a 30-35% daily loss of staff is going to have a major impact on operations,” says Asheville Police Chief David Zack. “I think we’d be hard pressed to find another agency who is dealing with as many big challenges as we are.”
The new plan will include a hybrid model that will allow residents to either call in or attend commission meetings in person. In June, the public comment policy will shift entirely to in-person, eliminating the option for the public to call in to the meetings.
“[The funding is] intended to be a pandemic response; it’s not actually intended to end homelessness. It just is, happily, an opportunity for us to end homelessness, because that is also a response to the coronavirus,” says Emily Ball, homeless services lead for the city of Asheville.
Creation of more than 40 miles of “purpose-built” trail system will serve a diverse range of users from equestrians to walkers.
Of the various downtown bathroom options available prior to the pandemic, only the city-owned facility at 29 Haywood St. was available 24/7. Since it closed, unsheltered residents have very few options.
“It goes without saying that the protests were unprecedented in the city and for law enforcement officers nationwide,” said Asheville Police Chief David Zack. “Never before had APD encountered a protest where the emotional intensity was directed solely at the police.”
Asheville-area musicians and harm reductionists work together to reverse a troubling trend.
Asheville City Schools Superintendent Gene Freeman disputed the account of a parent who said administrators failed to respond to repeated requests for information about what the closure of Asheville Primary School would mean to her daughter. After being provided with details by Xpress, Freeman spoke with Sara Shea on March 18.
“The path we’re on right now is a collision that puts us backwards and actually takes classrooms offline,” said Buncombe County Commissioner Jasmine Beach-Ferrara, regarding the Asheville City Schools plan to relocate preschool classrooms from Asheville Primary School to other elementary schools and Asheville Housing Authority developments.
“Families of color have unfairly limited elementary school options for their children because the district is mandated to maintain antiquated racial quotas that were put into place 30 years ago,” writes Asheville City Schools Superintendent Gene Freeman.
In town known for a foul smell and a river that used to run black, the Canton paper mill has made strides in cleaning up, and jobs depend on the facility. But environmentalists say concerns persist.
Mission Hospital recently opened an emergency department specifically for pediatric patients in Asheville. Doctors and parents alike say the dedicated 12-unit facility can make an emergency visit less stressful and quicker for young patients.
Whether adult or child, every participant in the local Big Brothers Big Sisters program has struggled with the limitations and restrictions imposed by the coronavirus pandemic on the one-to-one mentoring the organizations volunteers provides young people. But determination and creativity have allowed adult mentors to help their young partners continue moving forward in their lives despite the lockdowns.
The charging station program, funded by the N.C. Department of Environmental Quality from part of the state’s allocation in the Volkswagen emissions-cheating scandal, partially defrays the cost of installing Level 2 infrastructure, which can recharge electric vehicles up to seven times as quickly as a standard 120-volt outlet.
On March 12, Story Medicine Worldwide will kick off a three-day celebration, recognizing its 10-year anniversary. The local organization focuses on storytelling as a means of healing.
Xpress reached out to learn about the concerns of health care workers who are choosing to avoid or delay taking the COVID-19 vaccine, as well as the thoughts of those who enthusiastically or reluctantly received the shots.
A year after the Buncombe County Detention Facility expanded its medication-assisted treatment program, Buncombe County Sheriff Quentin Miller says it’s time to put the successful service “in four-wheel drive.”
The paper’s staff as a collective received three awards, including first place for appearance and design. The 2020 general election voter guide — which was shaped by reader requests and received significant funding support from the community — bagged third place for public service.