Every year around this time, local governments, community colleges and public schools are busy crafting budgets for the upcoming fiscal year that begins on July 1. In a normal year, budgeting is a year round process, however this is anything but a normal year.
The debate across the state still simmers — too soon, too late, or, like Goldilocks’ porridge, just right?
The nation’s annual Small Business Appreciation Week is held around this time each year and, coincidentally, couldn’t have come at a better time this year.
Less than five weeks after issuing a “stay home” order and barely three weeks after extending it, Haywood County commissioners approved a resolution May 4 to terminate their countywide order and told Gov. Roy Cooper they hope he’ll do the same with his statewide order when it comes up for possible renewal May 8.
Over the past year Haywood County’s tourism industry had been cruising along well above historical averages — until the Coronavirus Pandemic resulted in a substantial downturn.
A decision has finally been made on where to put Haywood County Schools’ central administration office before their lease at the Historic Haywood Hospital runs out at the end of this year, and as it turns out, they won’t have to go far.
Workers, businesses, schools and local governments impacted by the Coronavirus Pandemic will benefit from a comprehensive, bi-partisan relief plan that appropriates billions in aid while also modifying and clarifying a substantial number of regulations and deadlines rendered untenable by state and local “stay home” orders.
Less than five weeks after issuing a “stay home” order and barely three weeks after extending it, Haywood County commissioners approved a resolution today to terminate their countywide order and told Gov. Roy Cooper they hope he’ll do the same with his statewide order when it comes up for possible renewal May 8.
Despite being mostly spared from large numbers of COVID-19 diagnoses, Haywood County's totals have continued to grow slowly in recent days and have more than doubled since April 28.
Results from large-scale testing designed to gauge the level of asymptomatic coronavirus carriers among front-line workers at essential businesses conducted by Haywood County’s Department of Health and Human Services last Tuesday were released by the county earlier today.
While the Coronavirus Pandemic has affected the way many people perform their jobs, for the nation’s consummate front-line workers — sworn law enforcement officers — not much has changed at all.
One thing that most front-line workers have in common right now is that they’re serving some of the community’s most vulnerable members, and in most communities, there are few members more vulnerable than mistreated children.
A coalition of local nonprofits will pay to house some of Haywood County’s unsheltered population amidst the Coronavirus Pandemic after Haywood County government announced it wouldn’t pursue federal funding — essentially, free money — to do so.
Last weekend may have been a little bitter for BearWaters Brewing’s owners Art O’Neil and Kevin Sandefur, but it was also a little sweet.
Several hundred workers lined up by car at Haywood Community College April 28 to receive drive-through testing designed to gauge the level of asymptomatic, undetected COVID-19 cases in Haywood County, and if all goes well the results will soon help county decisionmakers evaluate the feasibility of reopening parts of Haywood County’s economy.
It’s been a long, strange trip for radio host Pete Kaliner, who came into the industry just as it was beginning an era of dramatic change. In many ways, his 20-something year career in Western North Carolina broadcast journalism mirrors the ebbs and flows of the modern media waterline.
Globally, more than 2.5 million people have contracted the coronavirus since its identification earlier this year. The hardest-hit country, the United States, has reported 802,159 cases as of April 21. Of those, 685,679 cases are still active.
After more than a month of COVID-related social distancing, self-isolation, business and school closures, travel bans and enforced quarantines for non-residents, some Western North Carolina residents are saying they’ve had enough.
One unfortunate but not unexpected consequence of the Coronavirus Pandemic in Waynesville is that the homeless — who have nowhere to shelter in place — also have no place to wash their hands or defecate, posing a danger to themselves and to the population at large.
Southwestern Community College Director of Career Services Michael Despeaux has been holding bricks-and-mortar job fairs for almost 20 years, but on Friday, April 24, he’ll hold his very first “virtual job fair” to connect employers and job seekers online.
While not yet a humanitarian tragedy in terms of lives lost, the Coronavirus Pandemic has quickly become an economic tragedy in terms of livelihoods lost. Intuitively, local and statewide “stay home” orders have resulted in large-scale unemployment, but counterintuitively, there are still plenty of places putting out the proverbial “now hiring” signs all across Western North Carolina.
Heavy rains and high winds associated with strong storms last Sunday night led to plenty of headaches Monday morning, as downed limbs cut power and closed roads while swollen streams slipped their banks, flooding businesses and residences across Western North Carolina.
Of late, many businesses and individuals have been forced to re-evaluate how they do things, but municipal governments are also grappling with governing in the age of social distancing and the “stay home” orders part and parcel to the Coronavirus Pandemic.
Lost in the struggle to combat the Coronavirus Pandemic is the fact that local governments have already begun incurring unanticipated costs related to COVID-19 response.
More help is on the way for small business owners now that several nonprofits have teamed up with Haywood County government to create a fund that will soon begin issuing loans to companies affected by the Coronavirus Pandemic.
The irony’s not lost on many that one of the most essential businesses affecting the lives of people around the world is the business of death.
Workers affected by layoffs associated with the Coronavirus Pandemic are still reporting major problems with North Carolina’s unemployment benefit system almost four weeks after North Carolina’s hospitality industry was effectively shuttered by executive order.
Less than two weeks after issuing a joint proclamation restricting movement to essential activity only, the Haywood County Board of Commissioners has extended the duration of that proclamation by 18 days.
I have a childhood friend from Chicago — we nicknamed him “Lucky” — who messed up bad and deserved what he got but he was penitent and he wasn’t a rotten guy and it wasn’t a life sentence.
For weeks now, people have been asking why a county of 60,000 people like Haywood hadn’t yet reported a case of COVID-19, even as national, state and local leaders have cautioned that it’s a “when, not if” proposition.
According to a press release issued by the Haywood County Sheriff’s office around 11:15 this morning, that “when” is now.
When the first rumors of a strange new contagious pneumonia-like illness began circulating in China late last fall, few could have imagined that the coronavirus outbreak would grow to become the global pandemic that it is today.
Following the lead of several other municipalities, corporations and co-ops, the Town of Waynesville has temporarily suspended billing-related water and electric shutoffs for its residential customers in response to the Coronavirus Pandemic.
As the greatest public health crisis in more than a hundred years continues to ravage both the physical and fiscal health of the world, the nation and the state of North Carolina, a group of 15 Democratic candidates is calling for the immediate expansion of Medicaid.
As expected, North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper issued an order earlier this afternoon directing residents to avoid all unnecessary activity outside the home.
On the morning of March 26, the Haywood County Board of Commissioners became the latest public body in North Carolina to issue restrictions on movement in an effort to halt the spread of the Coronavirus Pandemic.
As the Coronavirus Pandemic continues to spread, Haywood County and all four of its municipalities will now prohibit non-essential activity through April 16.
Tuesday, March 17 started like almost any other day for Dave Angel, owner of Elevated Mountain Distilling Company in Maggie Valley.
Last Tuesday, on what would normally be a bustling St. Patrick’s Day, owner Dan Elliot sat in his empty Sweet Onion restaurant in the heart of Waynesville’s downtown tourist district just after sharing some difficult news with his staff of 34 employees.
The Republican Second Primary Election between Lynda Bennett and Madison Cawthorn in the 11th Congressional District will now be held six weeks later than originally scheduled.
As a professional multimedia artist and photographer living in Western North Carolina since 2002, Luba Petrova still remembers the first piece of art she ever created.
Since the beginning of the year, the Second Amendment sanctuary movement has swept through North Carolina, with the majority of counties passing resolutions in opposition to any potential measures that might infringe upon the right to bear arms.
Of all the socioeconomic and educational weaknesses lain bare by the coronavirus pandemic of 2020 perhaps none is more disturbing than the fact that the closure of public schools has resulted for many children not just in a loss of education, but also a loss of nutrition.
Waynesville’s Russ Avenue Ingles already has one of the largest commercial footprints in Haywood County, but if plans filed with the Town of Waynesville’s Development Services Department by the regional grocer come to fruition, it will get even larger.
Haywood County Schools board members got their first look at a proposed budget for the next fiscal year last week, which contained few surprises and continued to concentrate on some much-needed capital improvement projects.
There’s a strong, long-held sentiment here in rural Western North Carolina that the region is often overlooked when balanced against the state of North Carolina as a whole, but unofficial results from the March 3 Primary Election show that the counties that make up this rugged, mountainous region are more important politically than ever before.
A tweet issued by President Donald Trump on the evening of March 6 made Rep. Mark Meadows’ next move pretty clear, but clarity’s in short supply when it comes to who will represent the 16 counties of Western North Carolina in Congress for the rest of the year.
Days after uncertified results from the Democratic Primary Election showed Buncombe County Sen. Terry Van Duyn finishing second to Raleigh Rep. Yvonne Holley, Van Duyn’s decided not to call for a runoff.
After more than two months of speculation as to his next move, Western North Carolina Congressman Mark Meadows will become President Donald Trump’s next chief of staff, as declared by the president in a tweet earlier tonight.
Republican voters in seven western counties have again decided that a candidate from Franklin, in Macon County, should be their voice in the N.C. Senate.
It looks like one of North Carolina’s longest-running political feuds will go another round.