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News State / Region

Also sentencing for habitual felons in effect

Several provisions of a new law took effect Dec. 1 to strengthen the state’s probation and parole system, allowing the state to better control the prison population and reduce repeat offenders. The provisions are part of the Justice Reinvestment Act, the most significant change to North Carolina’s sentencing laws in 17 years.

The new law is the result of legislative efforts that Gov. Bev Perdue launched in early 2009, when she made strengthening the state’s criminal justice policies a priority. One of her first efforts resulted in a legislative package, passed with the help of legislative leaders that spring, that gave probation officers limited access to juvenile records providing crucial information to aid determining supervision strategies for offenders.

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The USDA Forest Service National Forests in North Carolina has announced that it will host multiple workshops next year to address management of non-motorized recreation trails across the Nantahala, Pisgah, Uwharrie, and Croatan National Forests.

“Referred to as the Non-motorized Trails Strategy, this effort gives partners the opportunity to identify sustainable forest trail systems,” said Forest Supervisor Marisue Hilliard. “I believe this initiative will produce high-quality trail systems that will better serve our visitors and the land.”

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The Jackson County Public Library in Sylva has received the Outstanding Facility Award for new libraries in North Carolina over 26,000 square feet in size. The award is given annually by the North Carolina Public Libraries Directors Association (NCPLDA).

Jackson County Librarian Dottie Brunette accepted the award on December 1st in Greensboro, where she presented a PowerPoint slideshow about the building at a showcase of NCPLDA awards given for facilities, programs, staff development, and service innovation.

The Jackson County Public Library Complex was designed by McMillan Pazdan Smith Architecture and celebrated its Grand Opening on June 11, 2011.

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Tillis looking to establish network of communication.

Thom Tillis, a Mecklenburg County Republican and Speaker of North Carolina’s House of Representatives, made a visit to Macon County last Thursday, Dec. 8, hosting a roundtable discussion with county business leaders and local public officials at Southwestern Community College’s (SCC) Cecil Groves building. The visit marks the first time North Carolina’s Speaker of the House has visited Macon County since Liston B. Ramsey’s tenure as Speaker in the 1980s.

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