- published 3/27 (Larry) - unpublished ?

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Riders in the Nantahala area to take the biggest hit.

Fare increases for Macon County Transit were approved by commissioners during last week's meeting. While County Commissioner Ronnie Beale opposed the rate increases, the new fares passed in a 4-1 vote.

Macon County Transit Director Kim Angel brought the rate increases before the board and explained that her request was based on changes in operational costs. “The reason we ask for fares and cost share are to meet match requirements on grants, and when grant money runs out, the money we collect from passengers keeps the system running," said Angel.


At the August meeting of the Franklin Board of Aldermen, a public hearing was held for comments about suggested changes for sweepstakes parlors. The suggestion made by Town Planner Derek Roland would amend text of the Unified Development Ordinance (UDO) and restrict sweepstakes parlors to C-3 Commercial areas should they ever become legal.

“The application that was sent down to the planning board has been expanded from its original version,” said Roland. “We didn't originally include a formal definition so the planning board recommended adding the amendment that would define the devices in a similar manner to the state's wording. They also recommended a portion of the text to set guidelines that are similar to ones followed by private clubs. That's where we stand right now.”

According to the UDO, that means sweepstakes parlors “shall not be located within a 500-foot radius of another establishment housing Electronic Machines and Devices for Sweepstakes, nor within 250 feet of a residential use or residential zoning classification.”


The Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians (EBCI) pleaded with the Macon County Board of Commissioners Tuesday night asking for help to get rights to the Nikwasi Indian Mound. Although the property is within Macon County, the lease to the mound belongs to the Town of Franklin.

Principal Chief of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians Michell Hicks spoke Tuesday night saying that he was compelled to fight to "bring the mound home."

"The mound belongs to the Cherokee people and the deed needs to be back in our names," said Hicks. "It is time for that mound to come back home."


A Franklin man was arrested on August 7 for the sale of cocaine. Alvin Sharriod Anderson, also known as Terrance Bernard Anderson, 26, allegedly sold cocaine to an informant for the Macon County Sheriff's Department.

In all, 41.5 grams of cocaine and thousands of dollars were seized from Anderson’s home. A pistol was also recovered.

“This was an effort by our undercover unit,” said Sheriff Robert Holland. “They had received information that this individual was selling narcotics and created a situation where an informant was sold significant amounts of cocaine.”


The Tourism Development Authority (TDA) of Franklin hosted its monthly meeting Monday night at Town Hall. Items discussed included the potential funding of Franklin's annual PumpkinFest, a website hosting update, and a marketing update.

TDA member Summer Woodard provided a presentation concerning PumpkinFest on behalf of executive director of the Main Street Program, Linda Schlott. The request given to the TDA was for a $1,500 grant and for the use of two digital billboards in the Atlanta area.


The League of Women Voters (LWV) hosted its monthly forum last Thursday at Tartan Hall in the First Presbyterian Church. A nonpartisan civic group, the LWV hosts a variety of guests to bring awareness to local concerns. This particular meeting saw former Sheriff Homer Holbrooks (1986-2002) join current Sheriff Robbie Holland (2002-Present) for an hour's worth of discussion about their roles in the years in which they are serving or have served in the county.

Holland opened up the forum by discussing the path he took that brought him to the office of sheriff.


Carbon monoxide from a forklift possibly led to the death of one Macon County man and sent 16 others to the hospital last Friday night in an incident that occurred at Norton Creek Farms.

According to the updated Macon County Emergency Service CAD report following the incident, Kristie Hall and Bill Best with the North Carolina Department of Labor tested the forklift used Friday night and within 15 seconds of cranking the machinery, monitors began picking up carbon monoxide (CO) at 1,000 parts per million (ppm).


Alex Livorio Rivera, 21, of Franklin, was arrested Sunday, July 28, by Franklin Police Officer Elija Kirkland and charged with felony possession of a Schedule VI controlled substance, possession with intent to sell/distribute synthetic cannabinoid (86 grams), and possession of marijuana up to a half ounce. A large amount of money and credit cards were seized. Rivera was held on a $25,000 bail.

According to Captain Stephen Apel, the arrest occurred after Kirkland observed a suspicious vehicle stopping at various eateries on the Georgia Road. Driving back to the area, Kirkland saw the vehicle stopping at businesses again.


At a continuation meeting of the Airport Authority held on Tuesday at the Macon County Airport, the authority hosted a bid opening to choose a qualified contractor for the proposed runway widening that could take place in the fall.

At the authority's June meeting, Erik Rysdon, project manager for W.K. Dickson – a planning, design, engineering consulting firm based in Charlotte, N.C. – went into detail about the project and timeline it would likely take.

“We anticipate things to run smoothly,” he said. “We're going to be able to complete it over the span of about 45 days, with only one week of the airport being completely closed. We're looking at being operational during the day and carrying out the construction at night besides during that one week.”


Intent to kill charges Macon County Sheriff's Office has arrested a 26-yearold Franklin woman for aggravated assault with a deadly weapon with the intent to kill.

According to police reports, Officer Scott Nelson arrested Amanda Bidwell Shope of Old Murphy Road Tuesday, July 30, and charged her with three felony counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill, one felony count of burglary and misdemeanor counts of physical assault and injury to personal property. Police reports show that Shope was armed with a handgun at the time of arrest.

Shope is scheduled to appear in court on August 15. She was booked into the Macon County Detention Center under a $30,000 bond.


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published: 10/18/2013
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