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Commissioners ask NCDOT to clarify McCoy Bridge offer

The decade-long debate surrounding the McCoy Bridge controversy seems to be drawing to a close. The compromise worked out between the board and the NCDOT will likely be realized at some point this year, based on the board’s conversation about the latest NCDOT proposal at their meeting in early January. The letter, written by DOT construction engineer, Brian C. Burch, to county manager Jack Horton suggests that state transportation officials will agree to last year’s compromise.

 

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When the Macon County Board of Commissioners met last Saturday at the Cecil Groves Building at Southwestern Community College’s Macon Campus, they talked about the county’s finances and their concerns looking ahead to this year.

One major issue, brought to the board’s attention by county manager Jack Horton, was funding for Macon County Schools (MCS). Normally, the county designates approximately 50 percent of its general fund budget to MCS, and for this fiscal year, the county budgeted about $6.7 million. However, as many citizens are well aware of, these are not “normal” economic times. Nearly two million dollars worth of federal funds used in the past several years by MCS will have dried up by the end of 2012, and with a $459 million K-12 education reduction in last year’s state budget, Macon County School Board officials may have to ask the county to ante up some more funds going into the next school year.

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On Monday night, at 8:56, a call came into dispatch that a car had rolled into the Little Tennessee River on the Greenway, at 730 Riverview St. Tony Ashe, from the Franklin Police Department, was called to investigate. He determined that the car accidently rolled into the river and no charges were filed. George Bell, the driver of the 2001 Pontiac Firebird, said he thought he had a flat tire so he stopped to investigate at the top of an access road that leads down to the Greenway.

Willard Mason, of Franklin, a passenger in the car, got out and then Bell followed. After the two left the vehicle, the car began to roll down the hill, striking Mason on the leg and foot. Mason was treated by Macon County EMS officials and transported to Angel Medical Center, where he was treated and released.

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On Saturday, January 14th, the Macon County GOP held a general meeting and "Meet & Greet" for members and congressional candidates. The event was held at the Boiler Room in Franklin. Six of the eight Republican congressional candidates attended (Spence Campbell, Dan Eichenbaum, Jeff Hunt, Vance Patterson, Chris Petrella, and Kenny West).Jim Clayton attended on behalf of Mark Meadows. Phil Drake delivered a very moving invocation and GOP member Grace Johnson, who led the Pledge of Allegiance, was recognized for her twenty-four years of service in the Army Nurse Corps, retiring as a Lt. Colonel(entered service in 1968).

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Dan Forest is a candidate for Lt. Governor of North Carolina. A strong fiscal and social conservative, Forest has over 23 years of experience as a business leader, architect and entrepreneur.

He is a former Senior Partner with one of North Carolina’s largest Architectural firms – Little Diversified Architectural Consulting – having served as President of the firm’s Durham office.

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Benji Lafamm, owner of Cullasaja Campground, lost control of his 2008 Toyota last Friday and struck the side of the campground’s office.

Lafamm struck a row of mailboxes before crashing into the building. He was airlifted to Mission Hospital in Asheville to be treated for internal injuries.

 

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An unidentified white male and female robbed The Whistle Stop Mall Antiques on the Georgia Road on Jan. 5, according to reports from Sgt. Devin Holland with the Franklin Police Department.

Surveillance footage revealed that the couple entered the mall and canvassed the building while appearing to shop. The white female reported watched out for the male subject while he broke into a display case containing jewelry, which included bracelets, rings, pins, earrings, pendants, and other precious metal items such as belt buckles, a vase, and money clips; all of which had significant monetary value. The male suspect stole the items and placed them in his pants pockets.

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The North Carolina Association of County Commissioners will be hosting for the fifth year an essay contest on county government. The topic of the essay is, “How does my county government improve the lives of its citizens?”

The annual contest is open to 9th and 10th grade students in North Carolina public and charter schools. Students are asked to write a 500-word essay. The entry deadline is April 30, 2012. The winning student and the teacher who submits the winning essay will each win $500 and will be recognized at a meeting of their county’s board of commissioners.

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Last Thursday afternoon, Jan. 5, a two car accident occurred off of the Highlands Road exit ramp in Franklin.

According to Franklin Police Officer Dwayne Cabe, a 1989 Chevrolet Celebrity driven by June Conley, 80, of Franklin, collided with a Ford F-150 driven by Chuck Cocke, 50, also of Franklin.

Witnesses to the accident told law enforcement officials at the scene that Conley ran a red light and struck Cocke's vehicle. Cocke is an employee with City Plumbing and Electric Supply.

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Democratic Senator seeking reelection, this time as challenger.

Former state Democratic Senator John Snow announced Tuesday that he will be seeking reelection to his former seat in the 50th Senatorial District that covers Cherokee, Clay, Graham, Haywood, Jackson, Macon, and Swain counties. Incumbent Senator Jim Davis defeated Snow in 2010 by a slim margin of 161 votes, which could make for an interesting campaign season this summer and fall.

 

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published: 10/18/2013
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