Benefit for Caleb Watson :: Saturday, January 31 at South Macon Elementary School :: Click here for more details

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With Western North Carolina suddenly feeling like the Arctic, sometimes it may be hard to remember that spring will be here in no time and once again it will be time for local farmers to plant their crops. United States Senator Kay Hagan (D-NC) recently made an attempt to make it easier for these smaller farms to make a living.

Back in November, Hagan, along with Montana Senator John Tester sent a letter to the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Commissioner Margaret Hamburg that detailed the amendment that she and Tester were able to include in the 2010 Food Safety Modernization Act.

According to Hagan, this amendment will help protect small farmers from excessive federal regulations.



This winter, Macon County residents have seen record low temperatures invade the area. Often times, the only reprieve that can be had comes when the dial on the thermostat is turned up. Seeking warmth is only natural when the temperatures are as low as they have been, but what are people supposed to do when the power bill comes and the cost of that warmth is over their monthly budget?

One option that may be be considered are funds provided by the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) that can be applied for at the Macon County Department of Social Services (DSS). LIHEAP is a federally-funded program that provides a one-time vendor payment to help eligible households pay their heating bills.


Sales of the Friends of the Smokies specialty license plate in North Carolina increased in the fourth quarter, benefiting priority projects in Great Smoky Mountains National Park (GSMNP) including science education programs. The North Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles has released fourth quarter figures with $93,520 going to Friends of the Smokies from specialty plate sales, an increase from the same period last year. Total contributions from the Smokies plate now top $3.5 million since the program launched in 1999.


The N.C. Department of Transportation wants to hear from North Carolinians regarding their transportation priorities as part of its efforts to implement the state’s new Strategic Transportation Investments law.

Signed into law by Gov. McCrory last summer, House Bill 817 “Strategic Transportation Investments,” overhauls the way North Carolina funds transportation improvements, allowing NCDOT to make more efficient use of its existing revenues to fund more investments that improve the state’s transportation infrastructure, create jobs and help boost the economy.

The law establishes the Strategic Mobility Formula, which uses a data-driven approach to provide more flexibility in funding transportation improvements on the statewide, regional and division level with the goal of meeting the state’s top priorities while still addressing individualized local needs.


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