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Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Kudos to Laura Cabe, school nutrition director for Jackson County Public Schools and Josh Francis, transportation director, for their work in creating a district plan to feed students during the coronavirus closure. A tip of the hat also goes out to David Proffitt, chief communications offic…

Wednesday, March 18, 2020

If you draw your information about current events only from politicians, news outlets, and social-media influencers that share your worldview, you will be poorly informed. If you act on that information, you and others may come to regret it.

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

You often hear that North Carolina’s public universities are the “crown jewel” of the state. While this is indeed true, the deadlock in Raleigh over funding for a new budget continues to hamstring our state’s public institutions. Some of the most urgent needs can be found at Western Carolina…

Wednesday, March 04, 2020

Every human requires food, clothing, shelter, air and water to survive. Many of us don’t worry about these basic needs, but food scarcity and shelter are concerns for too many North Carolinians.

Wednesday, February 26, 2020

If you haven’t participated in early voting, it closes on Feb. 29. Election day proper is Tuesday, March 3. Be responsible. Voice your opinions with your votes.

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Have you been watching the presidential debates on TV? Falling viewer numbers indicate a growing number of us are tuning out and turning off these slickly produced spectacles that are dull, unhelpful, ill-conceived and poorly executed.

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

The Cullowhee Community Garden would like to thank garden member David Claxton for his kindness and efforts in building tables for our greenhouse.

Wednesday, February 05, 2020
Wednesday, January 29, 2020

If good things do indeed come to those who wait, the soon to be released draft management plan for the Pisgah and Nantahala forests is going to be special. The plan will provide the framework for how the 1.1 million acres of the forest in the Southern Appalachia and their resources will be m…

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Everyone knows that North Carolina is a closely divided purple state. Everyone knows that in 2020, many statewide races and control of the state legislature will be hotly contested. And everyone knows that with Democrats increasingly dominant in urban areas and Republicans in rural areas, th…

Wednesday, January 08, 2020

How would you describe the year 2019? I’ve pondered the just-right descriptive adjective and finally settled on the seldom used but highly appropriate word “quarrelsome.”

In this New Year, there is a widespread assumption among North Carolina politicos that state policymakers will do little of consequence. Instead, they will position themselves for the pivotal 2020 elections. They will strive primarily to commit no errors. They will stand pat.

United Community Bank will be hosting a food drive for United Christian Ministries during January. Donors can drop off items inside the bank Monday-Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. The final drop-off day will be Friday, Jan. 31.

Wednesday, January 01, 2020

The Cullowhee Planning Council and the Jackson County Planning Board recently held two public hearings on the special permit application for the proposed development “Elevate,” a Planned Unit Development request by University Property Group, LLC for sites located on Lyle Wilson Road.

Wednesday, December 25, 2019

It’s no secret that North Carolina is one of the most politically competitive states in America. But recent decisions by the presidential campaign of late-entrant Michael Bloomberg demonstrate just how central the Tar Heel State is likely to be in the political melodramas of 2020.

Most families and patients expect nursing homes and rehabilitation facilities to uphold patient dignity and take precautions to prevent sexual abuse.

Wednesday, December 11, 2019

I recall one particular Christmas season when my heart was full of giving and cheer. I had vowed to keep the true spirit of the holidays in all I did that year. There were only two teenage children left at home, and I felt it important to set an example for them.

Pictured above are some of the members of the Mountain Mama Birthday Club. Every two months the group meets to celebrate the members’ birthdays, but rather than give each other gifts they take up a donation for a worthy need or charity of the birthday girls’ choice.

Wednesday, December 04, 2019
Tuesday, November 26, 2019

My name is Trevor Mark Gates. I was born in Sylva at the (Harris Regional) hospital. My family has lived in Jackson County for as long as I know. I graduated from Southwestern Community College here in Sylva. Look me up on Google, and you’ll see that I’ve been written up in the pages of the …

Wednesday, November 20, 2019

“Insanity,” Albert Einstein purportedly said, “is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.”

Wednesday, November 13, 2019
Wednesday, November 06, 2019

If asked to identify our biggest problem today in one word how would you answer? My word would be trust. Republicans don’t trust Democrats; Democrats don’t trust Republicans, and the public doesn’t trust either group.

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

When I was slightly past the age of accountability (according to my Granny’s definition of probabilities regarding sin) I thought ... “Why not trick-or-treat one last time?”

The president’s acting chief of staff stood in the White House briefing room and confessed to activities considered by some impeachable, by others at least illegal.

Wednesday, October 23, 2019

The recent skirmish between the State Board of Education and superintendent of public instruction is yet another reminder of the longstanding debate about just who is in charge of public education in our state. This lack of clarity has taken too much energy. Instead of arguing over who is in…

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

It is no secret that women are underrepresented in American politics. We have never had a female president of the United States and women make up just 24 percent of Congress, 18 percent of America’s governors and 26 percent of state legislatures. And those who may think that local offices ar…

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

At almost the same moment our state was boasting of a $900 million cash surplus, one important sector of state government was encountering serious shortfalls. Lawmakers should address the funding problems with the N.C. Department of Transportation before considering refunds to taxpayers or o…

Progressives and conservatives argue about economic policy all the time. At government’s current size and scope, would it better promote long-term growth to raise taxes and spend more or to lower taxes and spend less? During a recession, should government try to bolster demand by running lar…

Wednesday, September 18, 2019
Wednesday, September 11, 2019

It has been my honor to serve five terms as the senator for North Carolina’s Senate District 50. Since January 2011, I have traveled extensively throughout the beautiful mountain counties I represent, and my goal has always been to understand how I can effectively support their needs in N.C.…

I read the Sept. 5 guest column (“Jackson must do better in stemming cat crisis”) and the sad dilemma Kaleb Lynch, manager at Catman 2, faces on a daily basis. It brought to mind a similar dilemma another community faced decades ago.

American Legion Post 104, and Post 104 American Legion Riders, will hold a ceremony on Saturday, Sept. 14, in remembrance of all who died on Sept. 11, 2001, and to honor the service of all first responders. There will be a short ceremony at 11 a.m. followed by a hot dog lunch. The post will …

Somewhere, sometime, and in some way, each of us thinks about peace. We might not call it “peace,” but we think about it. We wonder where or what peace is with questions like “why can’t we get along?” and “what is wrong with this family?” We sense peace each time we say, “what a wonderful ti…

Wednesday, September 04, 2019

We were an idea before we were a nation. Our borders were of less concern to our founders than a constellation of what were then almost unspeakable notions, like all men were created equal and they had, inherently, certain rights. Those rights were not granted by a state or a monarch or a ch…

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

If you come to the end of the year and you’ve got surplus money in the bank what do you do? This seldom happens in most homes, but would you spend it? Save it? Or, if you’re the government, would you return some of it to the people who sent it? That’s the option Senate President Pro Tem Phil…

In the context of American politics, North Carolina is a middle state – which is not the same thing as saying North Carolinians are especially moderate. It simply means that our Democratic and Republican coalitions are roughly the same size, making our elections highly competitive and diffic…

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

This is a modern day re-telling of the familiar Bible story of David and Goliath. In our version, David is played by State Treasurer Dale Folwell. The Philistine giant Goliath represents the large hospitals in our state.

Because Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper and the Republican-led General Assembly have remained deadlocked for weeks over passage of a new state budget, you might think nothing much of consequence is happening in Raleigh.