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News General

After nearly a month of seeing his wife being forced to miss their daughter's basketball games, Steve Stewart went before the Macon County Board of Education on Monday to request that the ban prohibiting his wife, Amy Stewart, from being on school property be lifted.

"Both my wife and I both work at the Macon County Sheriff's Office and are good, upstanding members of the community," said Steve Stewart Monday night. "I believe that the ban is unreasonable and unprecedented."

Steve Stewart's request comes after Interim Superintendent Dr. Jim Duncan sent a letter to Amy Stewart on January 7 notifying her of his administrative decision to ban her from Franklin High School. The letter reads, "This letter is to inform you that, due to your involvement in events on or about Jan. 5 of this year, I am directing that you are not to be present on any school property or at any school activities for the remainder of this school year."

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Lease negotiations for the highly anticipated and valiantly fought for dialysis center have concluded and renovations to an already existing building are expected to begin the first week of February.

At the request of community members, which was supported by commissioners, representatives with DaVita Dialysis Center, the company awarded the contract to open a center in Macon County, diligently searched for an already existing and vacant building in Macon County to house the new center. The search hit a small snag when options and locations for the center were limited to buildings not able to accommodate the center's need.

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Officials making plans to compile necessary data.

The Macon County tax office has procured new software that will allow them to better identify and collect delinquent taxes. In accordance with North Carolina General Statute §105-368, the county is responsible for identifying delinquent taxpayers in the county and take the appropriate actions to collect the taxes.

“We have followed N.C.G.S. §105-368 for years when using enforced collections,” explained Teresa McDowell. “We have used it to garnish N.C. Dept. of Revenue Tax returns, wages, rent proceeds, escheat accounts and bank accounts, and have done wage garnishments on more than one occasion. However, since we have such a small staff, we were never able to do them on a large scale. With the procurement of this new software, we will be able to do wage garnishments on a larger scale.”

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As a result of last week's torrential rainfall accumulations, a portion of road on the Great Smoky Mountains Parkway connecting Cherokee and Tennessee, was swept away in a landslide. The first assessment of the landslide which occurred along Newfound Gap Road in North Carolina shows that the landslide is approximately 90,000 cubic yards of material or 350-400 feet — around the length of a football field — and 45-50 feet deep.

According to Molly Schroer with the National Park Service Public Affairs department, as of Tuesday, the slide is still active and an assessment team has observed debris continuing to fall.

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