Hendersonville students and residents turned out for the city’s March for Our Lives on March 24, lending their activism to events held elsewhere in Western North Carolina and around the country.
As marchers took to the streets across the country to protest gun violence on March 24, thousands gathered in Asheville to remember the Feb. 14 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Lakeland, Fla. and to call for change.
City Council discussed police reforms during a work session on March 20 and ousted longtime City Manager Gary Jackson, who was about nine months away from retirement.
2018’s annual joint meeting of Asheville City Council and the Buncombe County Board of Commissioners highlighted issues of racial equity, police use-of-force and zoning conflicts affecting Buncombe residents.
The Buncombe County Board of Elections announced in a hearing that Michael Morgan, who had filed to run for Buncombe County sheriff, was disqualified due to his conviction on a felony charge. The board apologized to Morgan, explaining that the state constitution explicitly disallows convicted felons from serving as sheriff, though filing forms don’t make that clear.
Honor Moor’s new play tickles the funny bone over our nation’s political divide.
A rally against gun violence at Pack Square in Asheville on Feb. 18 drew upward of 250 participants. Speakers honored the victims of the Feb. 14 school shooting in Parkland, Fla., where 17 people were killed, and expressed their desire for legislation to prevent more mass shootings.
Fifteen candidates, most of them Democrats, have thrown their hats into the ring for offices elected in Buncombe County as of 9 a.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 13.
SATIRE: In a stunning turn of events, the city of Asheville’s Riverfront Redevelopment Office announced today that it has sold the former 12 Bones property on Lyman Street back to former owner Chris Peterson. Shortly after the city made its announcement, Peterson declared that the property will secede from Asheville and form its own town, “Rivergatia.”
SATIRE: In response to the growing concerns of many Asheville residents about the city’s frequent use of consultants on municipal projects, City Council hired the consultant firm Scrutinize Capital Administrative Management Inc., or SCAM, to evaluate the effectiveness of consultancies on various city initiatives.
SATIRE: Xpress takes a loving look at local media, food and politics.
Separate incidents in Canton and Buncombe County over the past week highlight the racial tensions that have dominated headlines throughout 2017 in WNC and across the country.
Movers and shakers on progressive issues have had increasing success in Buncombe County politics since the turn of the century. Activists and organizers on the left have carved out a stronghold in Asheville where they keep power by setting the agenda for conversation according to some. Meanwhile a rise in disaffiliation with the traditional two parties leaves openings for candidates that don’t fit traditional molds in Asheville politics.
Asheville welcomed its most diverse City Council in history, as new and re-elected Council members took the oath of office on Dec. 5 at City Hall in front of a packed chamber of family, friends and supporters.
Cleanup efforts are finally beginning at the CTS of Asheville Superfund site on Mills Gap Road, but past controversies and a lack of trust in Environmental Protection Agency officials continued to dominate the discussion during a Nov. 30 public meeting to review the impending remedial projects and address residents’ concerns.
Coming on the heels of the city blocking short-term rentals in the River Arts District, City Council voted against allowing such lodging throughout the Haywood Road corridor. At its Nov. 28 meeting, City Council placed heavy restrictions on lodging along Haywood Road in West Asheville, specifically targeting whole-unit short-term rentals such as those offered through Airbnb.
In Western North Carolina, homegrown activists of all stripes are working to effect change among an increasingly divided populace, drawing on historical ideals and using new technologies to spread their messages. Xpress reached out to local activists from across the political spectrum to share their motivations, challenges and techniques.