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SHERIFF MAKES ARRESTS FOR GUNS AND DRUGS ON BEVERLY AVENUE

SHERIFF MAKES ARRESTS FOR GUNS AND DRUGS ON BEVERLY AVENUE

THE INVESTIGATION CONTINUES   

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In August 2017, the Henderson County Sheriff’s Office Direct Enforcement Team (DET) initiated an investigation into alleged drug activity at the residence located at 302 Beverly Avenue in Hendersonville. Based on the investigation, on Thursday, September 21, 2017, members of the Sheriff’s Office S.W.A.T and Direct Enforcement Team executed a search warrant at 302 Beverly Avenue, which resulted in the recovery of a .45 caliber handgun previously reported stolen in Buncombe County, methamphetamine and Schedule II and IV prescription medication, as well as drug paraphernalia. The Henderson County Department of Social Services (DSS) also responded to the scene regarding the welfare of two children who were found to be living in the residence. Both children were placed in DSS care. As a result of the investigation to date, the following individuals have been arrested and charged by the Henderson County Sheriff’s Office with the below offenses:

Donald David Lewis, age 57, of 302 Beverly Avenue, Hendersonville
Felony possession with intent to manufacture/sale and deliver methamphetamine
Felony maintain vehicle/dwelling place for sale and delivery of methamphetamine
Misdemeanor simple possession of schedule II narcotics
Misdemeanor simple possession of schedule IV narcotics
Secured Bond: $27,000.00 and he remains incarcerated in the Henderson County Jail

Leah Maureen Staton, age 19, of 302 Beverly Avenue, Hendersonville
Felony possession of methamphetamine
Misdemeanor possession of drug paraphernalia
Misdemeanor child abuse
Secured Bond: $10,500.00 and she remains incarcerated in the Henderson County Jail

Alicia Jane Moore, age 40, of North Marley Drive, Hendersonville
Misdemeanor possession of drug paraphernalia
Secured Bond: $500.00 - Bond posted and released

Dylan Thorne West, age 24, of Knoll Ridge Road, Mills River
Misdemeanor possession of drug paraphernalia
Secured Bond: $100.00 - Served two days and given credit for time served on Henderson County charges; released to Buncombe County on outstanding warrants

The investigation continues and charges against additional defendants are anticipated.

PUBLIC HEARING SET FOR WEDNESDAY SEPT. 27TH: DUKE ENERGY ASKING FOR 16.7 PER CENT RATE INCREASE

PUBLIC HEARING SET FOR WEDNESDAY SEPT. 27TH: DUKE ENERGY ASKING FOR 16.7 PER CENT RATE INCREASE

THE PUBLIC WILL HAVE AN OPPORTUNITY TO BE HEARD ON THIS RATE INCREASE REQUEST AT A N.C. UTILITIES COMMISSION PUBLIC HEARING THIS COMING WEDNESDAY FROM 7 TO 10 PM IN THE BUNCOMBE COUNTY COURTHOUSE  

WILL COST CUSTOMERS IN WNC MORE IF APPROVED   

Duke Energy Carolinas LLC filed a request Friday to raise residential customers' rates by an average 16.7 percent annually to help paying for a 10-year modernization initiative.

The proposed rate hike would affect about 2 million customers from Durham to the western part of the state, including the Triad, and amount to $647 million in new annual revenue.

The request was submitted to the N.C. Utilities Commission, which could take seven to nine months to decide on whether to grant a rate increase and by how much. If approved, it would be the first rate increase for that part of the state in five years.

The utility projects a residential customer who uses 1,000 kilowatt-hours of electricity monthly would pay about $122.68, reflecting an increase of $18.72.

The utility also wants to raise its rate by an average 10.9 percent on commercial and industrial customers in that region.

Duke Energy Carolinas separately filed a request for commission approval to halt its Lee nuclear plant project near Gaffney, S.C.

The Charlotte Observer reported the utility wants to be allowed to recoup up to $636 million in Lee project development costs from customers. The recouping would represent $53 million of the $647 million annual revenue increase for a 12-year period.

"Nearly half of the rate request reflects investments in cleaner generation, including hydro, solar and natural gas," the utility said.

"Duke Energy Carolinas has maintained rates below the national average, and with the proposed change, customers would continue to pay rates lower than in 1991, when adjusted for inflation."

Duke Energy Progress, which covers the eastern parts of N.C. and portions of the Asheville region, earlier requested a 14.9 percent overall rate increase — including 16.7 percent for residential customers — for 1.3 million customers. That increase is projected to gain Duke Energy Progress an additional $477 million in annual revenue.

"As our state grows, and as we think about the future energy infrastructure required to serve our customers, a smarter grid will facilitate cleaner energy sources and provide customers the tools they need to make more informed energy decisions," David Fountain, Duke Energy's North Carolina president, said in a statement.

Fountain said in a Tuesday interview with the Winston-Salem Journal that "we don’t take this (rate increase) lightly and understand its impact on low-income households and small businesses."

Challenges
Although Duke Energy Carolinas gained on Dec. 27 federal Nuclear Regulatory Commission approval to build the Lee plant and operate two nuclear units, it has chosen to abandon the project, primarily because the nuclear-reactor supplier, Westinghouse, filed for bankruptcy March 29.

Duke Energy Carolinas had estimated the total Lee plant project cost at $12.94 billion. It has spent $542 million in project development costs as of June 30.

Westinghouse's "publicly stated intent to cease construction of new nuclear units in the U.S. have placed significant uncertainty on the project," the utility told the commission.

"It is unlikely the company will be able to construct and commence operation of the project before the end of the next decade.

"These recent events support the conclusion that the project, as originally contemplated, should be cancelled in the best interest of customers," the utility said.

However, the utility said it will maintain the license — at least for now — to build a nuclear plant at this site.

Jim Warren, director of advocacy group NC WARN, said he has mixed feelings about the decision to cancel the Lee project. His group already has committed to challenging the rate increases.

"We’re glad that Duke is cutting the losses it must share with the public," Warren said. "Duke Energy executives invested 12 years and over a half-billion public dollars — at the Lee project alone — hoping to build nuclear plants.

"Sadly, it validates the long-running concerns that the nuclear 'renaissance' would waste precious time and resources that should have gone toward proven measures that would slow the climate crisis."

Warren said he "strongly urges" Lynn Good, Duke Energy's chief executive, "to finally turn all efforts toward actually going green, thus aligning Duke Energy’s interests with those of all humanity at this late hour."

'Clarity and transparency'
The rate increase will help the utility pay for compliance with state and federal regulations involving managing coal ash since 2015, Fountain said.

In April, Duke Energy attorneys told the Greensboro News & Record that the utility meets the “criteria for granting a deferral,” a special accounting technique enabling it to set aside more than $700 million in accumulated coal ash costs for consideration in the upcoming rate case.

“The companies reiterate their commitment that costs associated with this deferral request do not include fines, penalties or remediation costs associated with the Dan River pipe break repair and resulting cleanup,” the attorneys said. Fountain made similar comments Tuesday.

In April, the NC Conservation Network filed a petition with the utilities commission about separating the coal ash costs from any rate increase request by Duke Energy.

“The cost and responsibility for coal ash storage and disposal remains a complex issue which deserves special attention,” the advocacy group said. “North Carolina ratepayers need clarity and transparency as Duke Energy seeks to raise our rates to pay for its coal ash problems.”

Duke Energy lawyers said critics are wrong in urging the commission to consider the company’s coal ash costs separately.

Duke Energy contends the great majority of its coal ash cleanup costs across North Carolina — expected eventually to top $4.5 billion — are part of the routine life cycle of its 14 active and retired coal-fired plants.

Meanwhile, N.C. Attorney General Josh Stein and other intervenors, including the Sierra Club, Appalachian State University and the Carolina Utility Customers Association, argued that Duke Energy’s coal ash dilemma simply contains too many factors that utility executives brought on themselves, or that otherwise beg closer examination than the company’s proposed bookkeeping maneuver suggests.

HENDERSON COUNTY'S MCGRADY RECEIVES THE "COMMUNITY CHAMPION" AWARD

HENDERSON COUNTY'S MCGRADY RECEIVES THE "COMMUNITY CHAMPION" AWARD

BY THE NC LEAGUE OF MUNICIPALITIES   

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State Rep. Chuck McGrady and State Sen. Paul Newton were recognized Friday night as recipients of the N.C. League of Municipalities’ Community Champion Award.

The award was presented to each legislator for dedicated support of North Carolina cities and towns during the 2017 legislative session. The presentations took place at CityVision 2017, NCLM’s annual conference held this week in Greenville.

Representative McGrady is serving his fourth term in the N.C. House, representing Hendersonville and portions of Henderson County. A co-chair of the House Appropriations Committee, he was a key advocate for the defeat of harmful billboard legislation which the League actively opposed.

Sen. Newton is serving his first term in the state Senate, representing Cabarrus County and portions of Union County. Despite that freshman status, he played a crucial role in pursing legislation which ensured that cities and towns could continue assessing development impact fees going forward in the face of an adverse court ruling. Without the legislation, well-coordinated growth in cities and towns across North Carolina would have been threatened and costs pushed off on existing property tax payers.

“It was my honor and privilege to help,” Newton told conference attendees.

McGrady, a former Flat Rock Village Council member and Henderson County commissioner, noted that he takes as a compliment being characterized, at times, as continuing to act like a local government official.
“I so much appreciate this recognition from my kindred souls in local government,” he said.
Outgoing League President Bob Matheny, Mayor of Zebulon, praised both Newton and McGrady for their willingness to listen to and consider the concerns of municipal officials.
“We truly appreciate your work at the General Assembly and that you are willing to make the sacrifice to serve in Raleigh,” Matheny said.

About the League

The North Carolina League of Municipalities is a membership association of 540 great hometowns – representing nearly every municipality in the state. The League advocates for its members, from the largest city to the smallest village, on the full range of legislative issues that affect municipalities.

For more than 100 years, the League has promoted – and continues to promote – good government by offering non-partisan advocacy, insurance and other services – as directed by its membership.

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NOW IS THE TIME TO ENROLL IN THE SHERIFF'S CITIZENS ACADEMY

NOW IS THE TIME TO ENROLL IN THE SHERIFF'S CITIZENS ACADEMY

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Henderson County Sheriff’s Office
Sheriff’s Citizens Academy Accepting Applications for 2018
September 21, 2017

Sheriff Charles McDonald and the Henderson County Sheriff's Office would like to announce the 2018 Sheriff's Citizens Academy is now accepting applications for classes beginning January 23, 2018. The objective of the Citizens Academy is to educate the public on the duties, requirements, and responsibilities of the Office of Sheriff in Henderson County. The class is for every citizen in the county that seeks to enhance his or her knowledge of our county’s law enforcement and thus become a more supportive citizen.
There are thirteen classes scheduled, all of which take place on Tuesday evening and start promptly at 6:00 p.m. and end at 9:00 p.m. All classes are held in the Sheriff's Office training room. Class size is limited to 40 students and classes will be filled on a first-come, first-served basis. Class topics include, but are not limited to: officer training & education requirements, criminal investigations, STAR program & school resource deputies, force on force decision making, crime prevention techniques, frauds & scams, personal safety, 911 communications process, emergency preparedness, K-9 teams, animal enforcement, bomb squad & SWAT teams, detention, civil process, courthouse security, gang information, drug prevention programs and the ‘Volunteers in Partnership’ program.

The class will tour law enforcement related facilities, enjoy hands-on demonstrations, and get a close-up look at the vehicles and equipment used in the daily operations. Participants will also meet many professional deputies, office personnel and the Sheriff’s Office leadership team. There will be opportunities for students to ask questions and talk with the aforementioned personnel. It will be an educational and fun experience. The class fee is $30.00, which includes a binder, handouts, graduation meal and class recognitions at the final session.
Interested persons must pass a background check and may pick up an application at the Sheriff's Office at 100 North Grove Street in Hendersonville or download one from the Sheriff’s Citizens Academy page on the Sheriff’s Office website (http://www.hendersoncountync.org/sheriff/sheriffs_citizens_academy.html).

For more information or questions please contact Citizens Academy Director Barry Brown at (828) 694-2742 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

FALL COLOR MEANS BILLIONS (WITH A "B") TO THE ECONOMY OF WESTERN NORTH CAROLINA

FALL COLOR MEANS BILLIONS (WITH A "B") TO THE ECONOMY OF WESTERN NORTH CAROLINA

FALL COLOR EXPECTED TO BE AVERAGE OR BETTE

NOT REALLY IMPACTED MUCH BY HURRICANE IRMA

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As the leaves change color in western North Carolina, green is the big color for most businesses.

October is one of the biggest months for businesses as tourists flock to the area to view the reds, oranges and yellows of the fall.

Western Carolina University economist Steve Morse told the Asheville Citizen-Times that October is like Black Friday in mountains of western North Carolina.

A recent economic impact study from Tourism Economics found that Buncombe County attracted nearly 11 million visitors last year. Those visitors spent nearly $2 billion.

Marla Tambellini with the Asheville Convention and Visitors Bureau said the fall foliage season is estimated to be responsible for about 12 percent of hotel occupancy for the year. She said demand is running ahead of last year's pace.

Photosynbthesis is the big factor that determines fall leaf colorf, according to a biology professor at Western Carolina University...and Professor Beverly Collins says its been a very good year for chlorophyll and photosynthesis.

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Western North Carolina typically has one of the longest fall color seasons in the nation, due largely to the changes in elevations throughout the region...with fall color starting early (in earl;y Septembedr at some of the highest elevations) and last into late October or even early November at the lowest elevations.

Tourism from the fall color season is historically critical to the economy of Henderson County.

 

 

FALL OFFICIALLY ARRIVED IN HENDERSONVILLE AT 4:02 PM FRIDAY!

FALL OFFICIALLY ARRIVED IN HENDERSONVILLE AT 4:02 PM FRIDAY!

"Of autumn wine now drink your fill, the frost's on the pumpkin and snow's on the hill."--The Old Farmer's Almanac

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The autumnal equinox or September equinox falls on September 22. Here’s everything you need to know about the equinox and signs of the equinox in nature.

WHEN IS THE AUTUMNAL EQUINOX?

Specifically, the Northern Hemisphere marks the autumnal equinox on Friday, September 22, 2017, at exactly 4:02 P.M. EDT.
Year Autumnal Equinox (Northern Hemisphere)
2017 Friday, September 22
2018 Saturday, September 22
2019 Monday, September 23

WHAT IS THE AUTUMNAL EQUINOX?

The Autumnal equinox—also called the September equinox—is the astronomical start of fall in the Northern Hemisphere and spring in the Southern Hemisphere.
The word equinox comes from the Latin aequus (equal) and nox (night).
During the equinox, the Sun crosses what we call the “celestial equator” (just imagine the line that marks the equator on Earth extending up into the sky) from north to south.
Earth’s two hemispheres are receiving the Sun’s rays about equally. The Sun is overhead at noon as seen from the equator. At this point, the amount of nighttime and daytime (sunlight) are roughly equal to each other.
Another definition of fall is nights of below-freezing temperatures combined with days of temperatures below 70 degrees Fahrenheit. From here on out, the temperatures begin to drop and the days start to get shorter than the nights.
It is the summer’s great last heat,
It is the fall’s first chill: They meet.

WHY AREN’T DAYS AND NIGHTS EQUAL?

Nights and days actually aren’t perfectly equal on the equinox, as in 12 hours of daylight and 12 hours of nighttime. The split may be off by a few minutes. Why does this happen?    iTdepends on where you live. On the autumnal and vernal equinoxes, the very center of the Sun sets just 12 hours after it rises. But the day begins when the upper edge of the Sun reaches the horizon (which happens a bit before the center rises), and it doesn’t end until the entire Sun has set. Not only that, but the Sun is actually visible when it is below the horizon, as Earth’s atmosphere refracts the Sun’s rays and bends them in an arc over the horizon. According to our former Almanac astronomer, George Greenstein, “If the Sun were to shrink to a star-like point and we lived in a world without air, the spring and fall equinoxes would truly have ‘equal nights.’”  Does the Sun rise due east and set west at the equinox? See more odd equinox facts from astronomer Bob Berman!

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WHAT FALLING LEAVES INDICATE

There’s an old weather proverb that states, “If autumn leaves are slow to fall, prepare for a cold winter.” This means that leaves that hang onto the tree indicate a colder winter to come. Or, perhaps you just haven’t had enough windy days! But look on the bright side—you get to look at the beautiful autumn foliage for a little bit longer. Learn why autumn leaves change color.
See our fall foliage forecast for 2017!
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SIGNS OF FALL

In many regions of North America, the landscape silently explodes with vibrant colors of red, yellow, and orange. The leaves begin to drop off the trees, providing endless hours of jumping into leaf piles for kids and raking them back up for parents!
Plants and trees are slowing down, as sunlight decreases. However, in the garden, asters and chrysanthemums bloom beautifully as orange pumpkins and corn mazes abound. Baseball season hits the homestretch, while football season is just warming up.
Halloween and Thanksgiving carry us through the season until temperatures begin to drop, nights begin to get longer, and all the woodland critters start storing up for the long haul of winter.
Of course, you can you can easily notice the later dawns and earlier sunsets. See our sunrise/set tool for your backyard!
Also, notice the arc of the sun across the sky each day as it starts shifting south. Birds and butterflies migrate along with the path of our Sun!
How do you know that fall is coming? Share your ideas in the comments below!

AUTUMN FOLKLORE AND VERSE

Autumn days come quickly, like the running of a hound on the moor. –Irish proverb
Trees snapping and cracking in the autumn indicate dry weather.
If, in the fall of the leaves in October, many of them wither on the boughs and hang there, it betokens a frosty winter and much snow.
Spring rain damps;
Autumn rain soaks.
Of autumn’s wine, now drink your fill; the frost’s on the pumpkin, and snow’s on the hill.
–The Old Farmer’s Almanac, 1993
Autumn has caught us in our summer wear. –Philip Larkin, British poet (1922–86)

COUNTY PLANNING BOARD HEARD MORE THURSDAY FROM CITIZENS ABOUT THE PROPOSED 232-ACRE "FARM AT EAGLES NEST" IN ETOWAH

COUNTY PLANNING BOARD HEARD MORE THURSDAY FROM CITIZENS ABOUT THE PROPOSED 232-ACRE "FARM AT EAGLES NEST" IN ETOWAH

PLANNING BOARD HAS UNTIL NOVEMBER 14TH TO MAKE A DECISION   

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Henderson County’s Planning Board Thursday continued to hear comments from concerned neighbors and citizens about the proposed “Farm At Eagle’s Nest”. That proposed development involves some 232 acres on McKinney Road in Etowah...which will include 299 total units of single family homes, duplexes, eight-plexes, and an RV park.

Most of those who spoke at Thursday’s meeting were against the development, although there were some neighbors who support it.

The Planning Board is waiting for more information from NC DOT on the impact of the development on roads and traffic in the area. Concerns have also been raised about the ability of the Etowah Sewer Company to handle a a development that large, particularly after a recent rainfall event led to an overflow from the system of some 15,000 gallons of untreated wastewater and considering the development’s close proximity to the French Broad River.

Planning Board Chairman Steve Dozier pointed out that with R-1, or Residential 1 zoning at that site, there could potentially be as many as 928 units on that property if all the approximately 500 acres of that property is developed under that zoning classification.

The Planning Board has until November 14 to make a decision, and county planner Autumn Radcliffe says the Board should have all the information it needs, including the traffic study from NC DOT, by the Planning Board’s October 19th meeting.

Florida developer John Turchin is proposing that development along with another large development off South Rugby Road in the Horse Shoe area.

 

 

PRESERVATION COMMISSION APPROVES DEMOLITION OF THE LAMPLEY MOTORS BUILDING ON SOUTH CHURCH STREET

PRESERVATION COMMISSION APPROVES DEMOLITION OF THE LAMPLEY MOTORS BUILDING ON SOUTH CHURCH STREET

MORE CHANGE POSSIBLY COMING TO DOWNTOWN HENDERSONVILLE   

THE LAMPLEY MOTORS BUILDING DATES BACK TO MID 1940S   

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Hendersonville's Historic Preservation Commission on Wednesday approved the demolition of the old Lampley Motors building at 101 and 121 North Church Street.  A new commercial development is planned for that property.

The property, which is also the location for Southern Appalachian Coffee Company, is currently owned by Pulliam-Justus Partners and they had applied for what’s known as a “certificate of appropriateness” to level the two old buildings on that property to make room for their planned newl commercial development.

Pulliam-Justus Partners owns the .78 acre site which is valued at just under $625 thousand.

The family of the late Dr. Bill Lampley operated an automobile dealership in that building, dating back to 1945.

The building is listed as a “contributing property” in the National Register’s historic district in downtown Hendersonville.

That building was also once home to Thomas Motor Company which later moved to North Main Street...and into an auto delership building that once stood at 7th and Main, approximately where Triangle Stop is today.

 

LOCAL MAN CHARGED WITH SEX CRIMES INVOLVING A MINOR

LOCAL MAN CHARGED WITH SEX CRIMES INVOLVING A MINOR

AN INVESTIGATION GOES BACK TO EARLIER THIS MONTH   

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Felony Indecent Liberties Arrest – Henderson County
September 21, 2017

On September 5, 2017, Henderson County deputies were dispatched to a disturbance on Leisure Lane in East Flat Rock. During the course of the investigation, deputies were made aware of allegations concerning inappropriate sexual behavior toward a minor by one of the parties. Detectives from the Criminal Investigation Division then began an investigation which led to the arrest on September 19, 2017, of Peter Budimer Sreckovich, age 45 of Leisure Lane, East Flat Rock, NC. Sreckovich was charged with one felony count of statutory sex offense with a child under the age of 15 and one felony count of indecent liberties with a child. Sreckovich remains in the Henderson County jail under a $58,000.00 secured bond.

Should anyone have additional information regarding allegations of misconduct against Mr. Sreckovich, please contact the Henderson County Sheriff’s Office at (828) 697-4911.

LOCAL UROLOGIST DONALDSON PLANS TO RUN FOR CONGRESS

LOCAL UROLOGIST DONALDSON PLANS TO RUN FOR CONGRESS

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REPORTED THIS WEEK BY THE WAYNESVILLE MOUNTAINEER   

The Waynesville Mountaineer reported this week that Hendersonville urologist Dr. Scott Donaldson plans to file as a Democrat candidate for the 11th Congressional District seat now held by Republican Congressman Mark Meadows.

Donaldson ran an unsuccessful campaign for Henderson County commissioner in 2010.

Up to this point, the only other Democrat in the congressional race is Phillip Price.

In his 2010 run for county commissioner, Donaldson championed health care for young people with an emphasis on the fight against obesity.