Displaying items by tag: mountain projects

A report recently issued by the Land of Sky Clean Vehicles Coalition clears the air about Haywood County’s greenhouse gas reductions.

A strategic plan developed by a subcommittee of the Haywood County Affordable Housing Task Force that proposes 400 affordable housing units by 2028 makes a number of recommendations to help achieve that goal, including the passage of a general obligation bond and the establishment of a land trust.

A Waynesville-based regional social services agency will finally get that new building its been after.

Last month, the town of Canton’s highly anticipated municipal pool project hit an unexpected snag when it was learned that a 40-year United States Department of Agriculture loan would not be available as part of the complex, 10-part financing package town leaders created to pay for the project.

Mountain Projects’ self-build housing program is all about helping those who are willing to help themselves.

fr mtnprojectsFor more than 50 years, Mountain Projects has been known for helping the most vulnerable in the community, but with a resolution passed by the Haywood County Board of Commissioners on June 20, they’ll be helping themselves — and the county.

fr circleshopeMonty Williams didn’t know a whole lot about the Circles of Hope program when he sat down to his first training four years ago. All he knew was that he wanted to do something to help people in poverty escape it, and the program had the full endorsement of Mountain Projects Community Action Agency Executive Director Patsy Dowling. 

Mountain Projects might take control of the REACH village in Sylva, ensuring the low-income housing would remain available to area residents in need, especially victims of domestic violence.

This does not mean, however, that REACH of Jackson County, an anti-domestic violence agency, will have shed its well-publicized financial woes. The nine-unit village, built in 2001 for $1.1 million through federal and state loans, precipitated a money crisis for REACH because the nonprofit couldn’t meet loan payments.

Even if Mountain Projects saves the village from foreclosure, REACH must come up with between $100,000 and $150,000 to keep operating for several more months until state grants come through (the financial heartbeat of many do-good agencies such as REACH).

North Carolina has taken to doling out grants about four months into each fiscal year, and as a result, agencies that desire solvency have learned to sock-away money. REACH has none in the piggybank. The agency has missed payroll a couple times, and had the water cut off to the village for nonpayment of bills, among other problems.

The Jackson County Board of Commissioners this week agreed to send a letter on Mountain Project’s behalf asking for a community service block grant for $600,000.

Mountain Projects is a nonprofit that administers programs to benefit the needy and elderly in Haywood and Jackson counties. Patsy Dowling, executive director, said the federal loan agency and REACH asked Mountain Projects to take over the village. Initially, Mountain Projects balked at assuming a loan of $840,074, but with a plan in the works to seek grant money, the agency said OK. The remaining balance of the loan will be paid by the N.C. Housing Finance Agency.

“We are very happy that the county commissioners agreed to partner with Mountain Projects to apply for funds to allow Mountain Projects to take over the village,” said Kim Roberts-Fer, executive director of REACH. “Our financial situation does not allow us to continue to maintain the village for the several months it will take for this process to be completed. We will be contacting (the note holders) to discuss possible ways to allow Mountain Projects to take over the project sooner. If no options are available within a few months, REACH will be unable to continue paying to maintain the property.”

Mountain Projects, Inc. through a collaborative effort with the Area Agency on Aging and Progress Energy is sponsoring Operation Fan-Heat Relief Program for seniors. People 60 years or older whose health would otherwise suffer during hot summer months and seniors who are retail residential customers of Progress Energy may apply. 828.452.1447.

A disagreement between Haywood County commissioners over an intergenerational Head Start and senior day care facility has come to an end.

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The Naturalist's Corner

Back Then with George Ellison

  • One of the Smokies’ finest poets
    One of the Smokies’ finest poets Editor’s note: This Back Then column by George Ellison first appeared in the Feb. 15, 2012, edition of The Smoky Mountain News. Olive Tilford Dargan is fairly well known in literary circles as the author of From My Highest Hill (1941), a delightful collection of autobiographical…
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