Jessi Stone

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Hannah LeAnn Nix says she’s not the same person she was a few years ago when a judge deemed her mentally incompetent and appointed her a state guardian.

Comment

After voting down the measure just a couple of months ago, the Bryson City Board of Aldermen is now on its way to reversing its decision on the controversial Brunch Bill.

Comment

After serving as Bryson City’s town manager for more than a year, Chad Simons will be moving on to Murphy to take on the same position.

Comment

When longtime councilmember Billy Mashburn passed away just days before the 2017 municipal election, the Franklin Town Council was prepared to have a new face on the board.

Comment

After months of trying to figure out the best way to address late-night partying that was disturbing residents, the Franklin Town Council unanimously passed a noise ordinance.

Comment

Every recovering addict can recall a moment in their life when they hit their lowest point. For Jenny Green of Waynesville, that low point was December 2014. She was incarcerated in the Swannanoa Women’s Correctional Facility, suffering from excruciating physical opioid withdrawal symptoms and missing her infant daughter’s first Christmas.

Comment

Limiting the number of prescriptions written for addictive painkillers like Percocet and Oxycontin is definitely a good start, but addiction specialists say it is just the beginning of solving the opioid epidemic in this country.

Comment

The opioid problem has been bubbling underneath the surface for over a decade, but the issue has now reached a roaring boil as the medical community, law enforcement, families who have lost loved ones and politicians are taking action to address the problem.

Even though the research shows that medication-assisted management for opioid addiction is the most successful treatment method, the prevailing stigma associated with methadone and other opioid medications is still preventing people from seeking the help they need.

There are still plenty of children in need this Christmas in Swain County and your donation to the Swain County Family Resource Center could help.

Comment

Angel Medical Center held a public hearing Tuesday morning regarding a new potential location for the hospital on U.S. 441, but not a single person from the public signed up to speak.

Comment

Haywood County Sheriff’s Office detectives continue to investigate two deaths that occurred in the Fines Creek area.

Comment

An aging membership, the inability to recruit younger members, a lack of civic engagement and a shift away from nonpartisanship are all factors the Macon County chapter of the League of Women Voters just couldn’t seem to overcome.

The nonpartisan advocacy group that has worked to encourage civic engagement in Macon County felt it had no choice but to disband after 27 years.

Comment

While the Macon County League of Women Voters had to disband this year due to low membership and community involvement, the Asheville-Buncombe League is on the upward swing with a renewed enthusiasm from members and the community.

Comment

On any given day, the Haywood County Detention Center is full of people suffering from substance abuse and/or mental illness — to the point where Sheriff Greg Christopher said it sometimes feels like his staff is running a mental health facility as opposed to a jail.

Comment

The Haywood County Sheriff’s Office has been awarded a $480,963 grant that will allow the department to hire four full-time patrol deputies to strengthen their ability to fight crime and to protect the well being of citizens in the community.

Comment

Jean Parris of Canton has been telling anyone who will listen about the growing drug addiction problems facing Haywood County since 2011, which is when she helped form Drugs in Our Midst.

After a months’ long battle, Mission Health hospitals and its affiliates will be back in Blue Cross Blue Shield’s network as of Dec. 15.

Comment

Franklin’s new and returning councilmembers were recently sworn into office and immediately started conducting business during the December regular meeting.

Comment

It’s impossible to talk about the mental health system in North Carolina without also discussing substance abuse and how the opioid crisis is impacting resources within the system.

Congressmen Mark Meadows, R-Asheville, and Jim Renacci, R-Ohio, introduced the Opioid Abuse Deterrence, Research and Recovery Act last week with hopes of tackling opioid addiction at the source.

Balsam Range will be beefing up its annual Art of Music Festival next year thanks to a $35,000 grant from the Haywood County Tourism Development Authority.

Comment

Asking for help is often the hardest step in the recovery process. Even after realizing you need help, it can be difficult to identify the problem and navigate your way through the mental health system.

Despite funding cuts from the state and Vaya Health, Meridian is working hard to make sure the programs for domestic violence and sexual abuse offenders stay viable.

Haywood County native Robert Guinn leads a fairly normal life these days. He has a good attitude, a fulfilling job, a good circle of friends and loves bragging on his 14-year-old daughter.

A major fundraising campaign is a significant undertaking for any nonprofit organization, but it’s especially difficult when an organization has to split its time between providing behavioral health services in seven western counties and trying to come up with enough funding to keep its programming.

Haywood Regional Medical Center, a Duke LifePoint hospital, is doing its part to meet the growing mental health needs in the region by expanding its behavioral health unit for adults and geriatric patients.

It seems the holiday shopping season comes sooner and sooner every year. Before the turkey has even cooled people are lined up outside the big box retailers waiting for their chance to snag the best deals of the season.

If battling the crowds on Black Friday doesn’t appeal to you, or if you just can’t seem to find the perfect gift for the family members who already have everything, consider making a donation to a local charity.

Two years ago, David was a different person than he is today. At 14 years old, his moods rapidly bounced around from extreme feelings of anger to unbridled energy. He couldn’t concentrate at school and didn’t understand why he couldn’t control his emotions.

The shortcomings of America’s mental health system have once again been brought to the forefront as national news outlets report the shooters responsible for recent mass killings in Las Vegas and Texas were mentally ill.

SEE ALSO: Waynesville treatment center expands mental health services

Medical experts say there’s no real connection between individuals with mental illness and mass shootings, but the presumed link between the two reveals the real reason why the mental health system is in such dire straits — we still don’t understand enough about mental illness.

The Balsam Center in Waynesville will now be able to better meet the mental health and substance abuse needs of Haywood County residents following an extensive renovation and expansion.

The town of Franklin will be going back to the drawing board to find the best way to address complaints from frustrated residents dealing with late-night parties and nuisance noise in their neighborhoods.

Comment

After paying for several engineering studies over the years, the town of Franklin is moving forward with a plan to try out some different parking designs on Main Street.

Comment

Based on recommendations from a consultant, the Haywood County Tourism Development Authority voted to change the makeup of the 1 percent funding subcommittees in Maggie Valley and Waynesville.

Comment

Ben King, the 28-year-old co-owner of Bryson City Outdoors, was not only elected to the Bryson City Board of Aldermen, but the young challenger was the top vote-getter among five candidates with 154 votes.

Comment

Franklin residents kept two incumbents and elected one newcomer to the town council to represent them for the next four years.

Comment

It’s been a month since the contract between Mission Health and Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina expired, leaving thousands of people in Western North Carolina to pay higher out-of-network prices to stay with Mission providers.

Comment

Angel Medical Center has been located in downtown Franklin for 60 years, but hospital officials are looking into the possibility of building a new facility out on U.S. 441.

Comment

Franklin alderman candidate Jimbo Ledford had hoped his idea for a multi-day music and beer festival on the languishing Whitmire property would convince the town government and the community that the green space property should stay under town ownership.

Comment

Just a couple of weeks ago, Billy Mashburn discussed with The Smoky Mountain News his continued goals and vision for his hometown of Franklin.

Comment

As much work as they’ve put into planning and fundraising, the Marianna Black Library Campaign Planning Committee still can’t get Swain County commissioners on board with the financial commitment that comes along with a new library.

Comment

Aproposed policy to make the Swain County Recreation Center a tobacco-free property may not be a slam dunk with all of the county commissioners.

Comment

The five candidates running for Bryson City Board of Aldermen all hold their hometown near and dear to their hearts, but they also have different ideas and hopes for its future.

Comment

Every election year there are a few hot button issues that entice candidates to throw their hats into the ring with an eye toward making big changes in their town government, but this year things seem different in Franklin.

Comment

Bob Scott is seeking his third term as mayor of Franklin, and it’s his second time running unopposed for the job.

Comment

Swain County Schools will apply for a multi-million dollar grant through the new Needs-Based Public School Capital Fund that can be used for school construction.

Comment

Heather and Robert Acton have it all figured out. Living on the outskirts of Swain County near the national park boundaries, they have found a perfect balance of business and pleasure.

The book business is rebounding thanks to people like Suzanne Harouff who’ve never given up on it.

Too often patients visit Dr. Linda Sparks as a last resort.

Only after years of not being able to find any answers or relief through traditional medicine, do they turn to an alternative like naturopathic medicine. Sparks has personally seen patients completely heal themselves with naturopathic medicine, which is why she decided to change her entire career to help others see those same health benefits.

Smokey Mountain News Logo
SUPPORT THE SMOKY MOUNTAIN NEWS AND
INDEPENDENT, AWARD-WINNING JOURNALISM
Go to top
Payment Information

/

At our inception 20 years ago, we chose to be different. Unlike other news organizations, we made the decision to provide in-depth, regional reporting free to anyone who wanted access to it. We don’t plan to change that model. Support from our readers will help us maintain and strengthen the editorial independence that is crucial to our mission to help make Western North Carolina a better place to call home. If you are able, please support The Smoky Mountain News.

The Smoky Mountain News is a wholly private corporation. Reader contributions support the journalistic mission of SMN to remain independent. Your support of SMN does not constitute a charitable donation. If you have a question about contributing to SMN, please contact us.