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News General

New look will include plantings, benches and pavers

At a special meeting Wednesday, Feb. 16, at 4:00 P.M., the Highlands Town Board heard a proposal to revamp the sidewalk area at the intersection of Main and S. 4th Streets. The streetscape project would extend up the hill on S. 4th Street to the W. Church Street Alley. Currently the sidewalk is concrete and does not match the sidewalk area up S. 4th Street past the alley or across the street.

Moreover, the concrete is damaged and is deteriorating, with crumbled sections in the areas that experience the most foot traffic. Interim Planning Director and Zoning Administrator Mark Maxwell says the area presents a safety hazard.

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Town alderman Jerry Evans passed away on Thursday at the age of 55, due to complications relating to a respiratory illness. His passing was unexpected, according to  town officials.

Over a year ago, Evans was diagnosed with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, a scarring or thickening of the lungs that causes difficulty breathing. "He had a very substantial problem with his lungs," said Franklin Mayor Joe Collins. "It had been going on for a while.

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Synthetic marijuana sold under the guise of “herbal incense” is not the only “legal” product harming its users, say state and federal officials.

Now, synthetic stimulants added to certain products marketed as “bath salts” are reportedly being used as recreational drugs because they mimic the effects of cocaine, ecstasy and other illegal drugs.

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This week, low humidity and high winds combined to create ideal conditions for wildfires and out of control brush fires.

Three brush fires were reported in Macon County this week, including the one above, a possible brush fire which got out of control on Sylva Rd./US 441 endangering at least one structure.

Officials with the N.C. Division of Forest Resources have advised that residents not conduct outdoor burning as long as the dangerous conditions persist.

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