Rain, heavy at times early
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N.c. Appeals Court Judge Howard Manning Tuesday upheld action taken by the NC General Assembly in 2013 which transfers the City of Asheville ' s water stem to the Metropolitan Sewage District.
The legislation, which was appealed by the City of Asheville, essentially creates a new regional water and sewer authority which will serve Buncombe County and parts of northern Henderson County.
The new authority will be over - seen by appointed representatives from Henderson County and from the Town of Mills River as well as from Buncombe County and the City of Asheville.
The legislation had been co - sponsored by Rep. Chuck McGrady and the court ruling was applauded Tuesday by both McGrady and State Senator Tom Apodaca.
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Adventist Healthcare To Pay About $115 To Settle False Claims Act Allegations
Adventist Healthcare has agreed to pay the United States $115 million to settle allegations that it violated the False Claims Act by maintaining improper compensation arrangements with referring physicians and by miscoding claims, the Justice Department announced today. Adventist is a non-profit healthcare organization that operates hospitals and other health care facilities in 10 states.
The settlement resolves allegations that Adventist submitted false claims to the Medicare and Medicaid programs for services rendered to patients referred by employed physicians who received bonuses based on a formula that improperly took into account the value of the physicians' referrals to Adventist hospitals. Federal law restricts the financial relationships that hospitals and clinics may have with doctors who refer patients to them.
The allegations settled today arose from two lawsuits filed respectively by whistleblowers Michael Payne, Melissa Church and Gloria Pryor, who worked at Adventist's hospital in Hendersonville, North Carolina, and Sherry Dorsey, who worked at Adventist's corporate office, under the qui tam provisions of the False Claims Act. The act permits private parties to file suit on behalf of the United States for false claims, and to share in any recovery. The whistleblowers' share of the settlement has not yet been determined.
by RTT Staff Writer
In what is likely the closing days of the General Assembly session for this year, an effort to repeal a state law intended to keep Mission Health from getting too much control over the local health care market resurfaced in a state Senate committee Wednesday.
Two Henderson County legislators, one a leader in the state senate and the other a leader in the state house, are staked out on opposite sides of that issue.
The Asheville Citizen-Times reported this week that the Senate Rules Committee added language that would repeal the state's certificate of public advantage law, or COPA, to a bill that began life in the House as a measure to improve parental knowledge of childhood diabetes.
Mission has been operating under an agreement authorized by the law that limits its profit margin and caps the number of doctors it can employ since 1995. The agreement shielded Mission from anti-trust concerns from federal regulators stemming from its merger with St. Joseph's Hospital.
Sen. Tom Apodaca, a Henderson County Republican and chairman of the Rules Committee, introduced a bill in March to repeal both the COPA law and another that requires state approval before construction of certain large health care facilities. The bill has not moved since, but similar language was added to the Senate's version of the state budget bill.
But, the legislation is not part of the House-Senate budget bill the General Assembly is considering this week.
Apodaca did not respond to requests for comment on the COPA issue Tuesday and Wednesday.
The new language would require approval from the full Senate and the House.
Rep. Chuck McGrady, R-Henderson, said in July he opposes ending COPA.
Sen. Terry Van Duyn, D-Buncombe, said Wednesday she will probably support the change despite concerns she expressed in June that it had received little public discussion.
Medicaid reform legislation likely to be adopted by the General Assembly shortly would allow private insurance companies or organizations led by health care providers to contract with the state to provide care to people on Medicaid, she said. The COPA law could hinder Mission's ability to partner with other local organizations to be a part of such a network, she said.
"I want our regional providers to be as involved as possible," Van Duyn said, but she added she can understand worries over ending restrictions on Mission.
"If you're an individual physician and you feel like Mission is taking over, COPA's your last line of defense," she said.
Mission has said it favors repealing COPA.
THERE'S SIERRA NEVADA IN MILLS RIVER, OSKAR BLUE IN BREVARD, SOUTHERN APPALACHIAN IN HENDERSONVILLE, AND NEW BELGIUM IN WEST ASHEVILLE...NOW A NEW CRAFT BEER MAKER PLANS TO OPEN UP IN FLETCHER
The latest town landing its own craft brewery will be Fletcher, where Blue Ghost Brewing looks to pour its first pints next year.
The Asheville Citizen-Times reports...
Named for the famous glowing Blue Ghost fireflies that flutter through Dupont State Forest, the brewery will be a community gathering spot in Fletcher, which has been without its own craft brewery, said founder Erik Weber. The location is an existing 4,000-square-foot building at 125 Underwood Road, not far from Asheville Regional Airport. Weber has ordered an American-made one barrel brewing system, but is hoping to expand to a 10-barrel system within a year, and then to open a farmhouse brewery.
"There is beer in Asheville and there is beer in Hendersonville, but there's not much in between," he said. "We want to create a natural ale trail" between the two cities, he said.
Weber, originally from Eire, Pennsylvania, formerly worked at Oskar Blues Brewery in Brevard. He studied brewing at Blue Ridge Community College, and then taught there. "I've wanted to open a brewery for 10 years," he said. "I wanted it to be more than a brewery." Blue Ghost will have outdoor spaces - one of them surrounding a century-old oak tree - and Weber plans to host a farmer's market at the site. The brewery will open without food offerings, "but within six months, we'll add a small kitchen and focus on gourmet pizzas," he said. He plans on delivering pizzas and beer growlers to the many hotels and motels in the area.
Many new breweries run into issues finding a name that hasn't been claimed by someone else, but Weber thinks he has the rights to the Blue Ghost name. "That has been one of our biggest challenges," he said. "We had several other names that we loved, but Internet searches showed that some other brewery had it, or that it was used for a beer."
Blue Ghost will produce four core brews: a drinkable blonde ale, a traditional West Coast IPA, a pale ale and a stout. He also plans a changing Blue Ghost series of beers,
Blue Ghost is the latest craft brewery to emerge in Western North Carolina, where more than 40 brewing companies are now open,. With the arrival of new operations that are planned or are under construction, the area will have nearly 50 breweries including the national brands Sierra Nevada in Mills River, Oskar Blues in Brevard and New Belgium which is building in West Asheville.
FLAT ROCK PLAYHOUSE
ANNOUNCES 2016 SEASON
Subscriptions to go on sale September 1, 2015
Flat Rock, NC (August 27, 2015) –The Flat Rock Playhouse announced today the plays, musicals and Music on the Rock concerts slated for the 2016 Season as well as a streamlined subscription package plan.
“We’ve truly had a banner year at Flat Rock Playhouse in 2015. We’re experiencing record numbers and sold out audiences, which has been amazing to witness,” says Artistic Director Lisa K. Bryant. “Standing on the back row of a packed house of Gypsy, Driving Miss Daisy, and Always…Patsy Cline has been a truly breathtaking experience and I could not be more proud of the work we have done – onstage and off.”
Earlier this year, the Playhouse conducted a survey asking 15,0000 patrons which shows they would most like to see in 2016.
“I’m happy to report that nearly all of the titles that we are producing in 2016 on our Mainstage and Playhouse Downtown – as well as Music on the Rock – are suggestions taken directly from the feedback,” says Bryant.
Subscriptions go on sale Tuesday, September 1st. The packages for 2016 will be priced at a heavier discount than previous seasons.
"We've made the decision to streamline the packages offered for 2016," says Flat Rock Playhouse Marketing and Communications Director Dane Whitlock. "We'll continue to offer our traditional Plan A Package, which is tickets to all nine shows in our season, not including the Studio 52 production of James and the Giant Peach, but at twice the savings offered in previous years." Whitlock continues, "We're also offering a new package called the Summer Musicals Plus Package, which is a variation on our Flex Plan of the past. This new plan includes tickets to our two blockbuster summer musicals The Music Man and 9 to 5 as well as eight additional tickets to use however you choose, again at a much steeper discount. We feel these two packages, combined with our Music on the Rock package, are much more enticing options for our patrons."
Current subscribers wishing to renew their 2015 plan are encouraged to call the Flat Rock Playhouse Box Office at 828.693.0731 before October 1st, 2015.
The musicals in 2016 Flat Rock Playhouse season include:
Million Dollar Quartet to run April 28 through May 21. Inspired by the true story, Million Dollar Quartet dramatizes the impromptu jam session featuring Elvis Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins and Johnny Cash and include the hit songs Blue Suede Shoes, Folsom Prison Blues, Great Balls of Fire, Hound Dog, Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On and many more. Book by Floyd Mutrux and Colin Escott.
The Music Man to run June 16 through July 9. Meredith Willson’s great American masterpiece, The Music Man is the story of the fast talking con artist Harold Hill who plots to swindle the folks of River City Iowa by posing as a band instructor. The long awaited, highly requested musical features such Broadway standards as Til There Was You and 76 Trombones.
Dolly Parton’s 9 to 5 to run July 28 through August 20. Based on the hit 1978 movie, 9 to 5 is the story of three secretaries who devise a plan to overthrow their sexist, egotistical, lying, hypocritical bigot of a boss. The lively and inventive score featuring the hit song 9 to 5 is written by Dolly Parton with book by Patricia Resnick, based upon the screenplay by Resnick and Colin Higgins.
Beehive, the 60’s Musical to run October 13 through 30. From Lesley Gore to Aretha Franklin and everyone in between, Beehive the 60’s Musical is a celebration of the girl group of that decade and features such music as It’s My Party, My Boyfriend’s Back, Where the Boys Are, Proud Mary and Respect. Book by Larry Gallagher.
A Christmas Carol to run November 17 through December 17. Charles Dickens’ classic tale adapted by Richard Hellesen and David De Berry, returns to the Flat Rock Playhouse stage in 2016. The State Theatre of North Carolina will be presenting the hit 2014 production bi-annually.
All of the musicals will be performed on the Flat Rock Playhouse Mainstage in the Village of Flat Rock.
The plays slated for 2016 include:
Self Help to run May 26 through June 4 at on the Flat Rock Playhouse Mainstage. Norm Foster’s hilarious play about two struggling actors who reinvent themselves, and their failing acting careers, as self help gurus. Their marriage and their lives unravel in this uproarious farce as they try desperately to deal with dead bodies and nosey reporters while holding on to their newly found fame.
The Importance of Being Earnest to run July 7 through 24 at the Flat Rock Playhouse Downtown. Dubbed “a trivial comedy for serious people,” The Importance of Being Earnest is Oscar Wilde’s most celebrated play. Set in Victorian England, two friends use the same pseudonym (“Earnest”) for their illicit activities and hilarity ensues.
The Diary of Anne Frank to run September 8 through 25 on the Flat Rock Playhouse Mainstage. Based on the diary kept by Anne Frank while she was in hiding with her family in Amsterdam for two years, adapted by Frances Goodrich and Albert Hackett, The Diary of Anne Frank has become symbolic of the Nazi atrocities during World War II.
Vintage Hitchcock, A Live Radio Play to run October 20 through November 6 at the Flat Rock Playhouse Downtown. This spooky and thrilling piece from the master of suspense, Vintage Hitchcock, A Live Radio Play by Joe Landry, brings to life three tales in the style of a 1940’s radio broadcast – complete with vintage commercials and the magic of live sound effects.
The Music on the Rock concert series includes:
The Music of Barry Manilow, February 11 – 14.
Donny Edwards, a Heart and Soul Tribute to the King, the return limited engagement direct from Las Vegas will perform April 7 – 17 on the Flat Rock Playhouse Mainstage.
The Music of the Beach Boys, April 21 – May 1.
The Music of the Eagles, May 12 – 22.
The Music of Billy Joel and Elton John, June 9 – 19.
The Music of Buddy Holly, August 11 – 21.
The Music of Fleetwood Mac, September 29 – October 9.
A Celtic Christmas, December 1 – 18.
Additionally, Flat Rock Playhouse Studio 52 will present James and the Giant Peach at the Playhouse Downtown. Based on the beloved book by Roald Dahl, James and the Giant Peach is about a young boy who escapes his conniving aunts via a magical giant peach and discovers adventure, friendship, and the true nature of family along the way. This multimedia production with a new and inventive book by Timothy Allen McDonald, music and lyrics by the Tony nominated duo Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, will take flight from March 10 – 20, 2016.
The Hendersonville Times-News reported on Tuesday that Laurel Park Town Council has become the latest governmental body to pass a resolution opposing part of Duke Energy's transmission line project that would “negatively impact the historic view from Jump Off Rock.”
In a special-called meeting last Friday, attended by about 200 concerned citizens, Mills River Town Council became the first in this area to formally oppose the whole Duke Energy modernization plan, especially the transmission line.
Laurel Park's resolution opposed Duke Energy's “transmission reliability enhancement line segment 10B "proposed to run along the outskirts of Laurel Park on a route that would also go through the Cummings Cove community.
The line “would be within the view shed of Jump Off Rock,” Town Manager Alison Melnikova told the council. “So since the public comment period … is still open for Duke Energy's process, this resolution would allow the town to officially state that they're in opposition to this particular segment of the project. It's not in opposition to the project as a whole.”
Councilman Paul Hansen said he found Duke's proposed routes online (http://bit.ly/1Wj8uj0) and took a map up to Jump Off Rock.
“Yes, you will be able to see 140-foot towers with multiple (lines),” Hansen said.
With a swath of hundreds of feet of clear-cut land paving the way for the lines, he said, it will be “pretty visible.”
“Jump Off Rock has been a cultural landmark forever, especially when you go back to the legend, and that (line) would have an impact on that cultural landmark we have in our town,” Hansen said.
Mayor J. Carey O'Cain said that the proposed route could also mar views from the Somersby residential development.
“They are actually closer to and more in line with the view sheds,” he added.
The council passed the resolution unanimously.
Times-News story and photo
Registration is now open for the Fall Into Flat Rock 5k sponsored by Pardee UNC Health Care. The race will be held on Saturday, October 17, 2015 at 9am at The Park at Flat Rock, 55 Highland Golf Drive, Flat Rock and is limited to the first 150 registrants. Cost for the 5k run is $30 and the walk is $10. All proceeds benefit Park development.
Participants will enjoy a morning run (or walk--you can register for either) through the scenic Park at Flat Rock. After the race, refreshments will be provided, and awards will be given according to age group. T-shirts are free to registered runners only.
“We are very pleased to be such an integral part of this exciting event,” stated Elizabeth Moss, Director of Community Affairs and Outreach at Pardee UNC Health Care. “Part of our mission at Pardee UNC Health Care is to support events that promote healthy lifestyles in our community. The Park at Flat Rock definitely does just that.”
To register, runners and walkers should visit active.com
The Flat Rock Park and Recreation Foundation Inc. is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization founded in 2013 by the Village of Flat Rock, North Carolina to help raise the funds required to fulfill the vision of a signature municipal park for the community. That vision includes opportunities for recreation, health, and education for all generations while preserving the natural beauty that draws visitors from far and wide to Western North Carolina.
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Persons interested in the history and heritage of Henderson County are encouraged to register online now for the fall semester courses that begin Tuesday, Aug. 25, through the Continuing Education Department at Blue Ridge Community College. The classes are open to the public.
Classes are held on Tuesdays. There is a day class and a night class that cover the same material. The day class is 1 to 2:30 p.m. and the night class is 6:30 to 8 p.m.enderson County History and Heritage I, covering prehistory to 1860, is taught the first half of the fall semester from Aug. 25 to Oct. 13.
Topics include geography and natural resources, Cherokee and Catawba history and culture, Revolutionary War and treaties with the Cherokee, early settlers and backgrounds, Appalachian culture, political and economic history, agriculture, transportation, religious history, education, early communities, black history, and noteworthy families and people in the early history of the county. Registration is $60.
Henderson County History and Heritage II, covering 1860 to the early 20th century, takes place the second half of the fall semester, from Oct. 20 to Dec. 8. Topics include the Civil War, Reconstruction, black history, Appalachian culture and stereotypes, political and economic history, industry, agriculture, transportation, religious history, education, tourism, 19th and 20th century communities, and World War I. Registration is $60.
The instructor is Jennie Jones Giles.
To register online, visit http://www.blueridge.edu/