A $740 grant from the Jim McRae Endowment for the Visual Arts will fuel efforts to create a Women’s History Trail in Macon County, celebrating the lives and accomplishments of Macon County women with a trail to “walk in her steps.”
After listening to the concerns of property managers in its service area, the Junaluska Sanitary District board has decided to look for other ways to cut down on revenue losses.
From the control room of Canton’s water plant, a steady barrage of numbers flash across the computer monitors.
As days slid by without rain last fall, and the days stacked into weeks, Neil Carpenter watched the water gauge on Jonathan Creek like the ticking hands of a doomsday clock.
Carpenter usually has 4 million gallons of water a day at his fingertips — triple what he needs to serve the 3,800 homes and businesses in greater Maggie Valley.
An unpopular policy put forth by the Junaluska Sanitary District requiring landlords to co-sign for their new tenants’ water service has been suspended after tensions between property owners and elected officials reached a boiling point.
Several Haywood County landlords are questioning the legality of a new policy adopted by the Junaluska Sanitary District that will require them to co-sign on their tenants’ water service agreement.
Most anyone who has worked for a living, volunteered, or held elected office has stood at the edge of the abyss, looked over it, and made a very important decision: complete honesty and unyielding integrity, or maybe a little dishonesty, maybe a seemingly harmless white lie. The dishonesty might concern office supplies or maybe tools, perhaps a few dollars from the organization no one would miss; for an elected official, it could mean cozying up and getting favors from someone who could benefit from your vote, or perhaps it could mean a little extra money or a gift from such a person.
The situation that The Smoky Mountain News reported about last week concerning the Junaluska Sanitary District is a great illustration of how this happens. The district’s former employee developed a scheme for embezzling a little money each day over a long period of time. Finally caught, she admitted to stealing $210,000 over six years. She repaid it all and did not serve any jail time.
No one knows for sure what motivated Scarlette Heatherly the first time she skimmed a little cash off the top of a customer’s water bill.
But once she figured out she could get away with it, she couldn’t seem to stop. Heatherly stole $210,000 from the Junaluska Sanitary District over a six-year period.
A wall calendar edged with hot-pink swirls seems out of place in the Junaluska Sanitary District, where the back door of the office opens onto a double-bay equipment garage and work boots leave muddy tracks across the concrete floor.
“It’s the cheapest calendar I could find at Staples,” offered Jim Francis, an elected board member for the sanitary district. Saving money, after all, is a point of pride for the scrappy water and sewer system, and it goes hand in hand with keeping rates as low as possible for the 1,850 customers along its lines.