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On Thursday, April 10, the League of Women Voters of Macon County will sponsor a forum for candidates for county commission. The public is invited. The meeting will be held at noon at Tartan Hall in Franklin.

One seat is open in District 1. Michael Rogers (D), John Shearl (R), and incumbent James Tate (R) are running for the seat. In District 2, incumbent Ronnie Beale (D), incumbent Ron Haven (R), John Martin (L), and Gary Shields (R) are running for two available seats.

The League of Women Voters is a non-partisan organization focused on voter education and citizen participation in government. This will be an educational forum, not a rally, and campaign signs are not allowed.

Attendees are welcome to bring a bag lunch.

Last Wednesday, Judge Bradley B. Letts sentenced Frank Kelly Pruitt, 63, to an active sentence of eight to 10 years for the 2012 second degree murder of Pruitt’s son, James Robert Pruitt, 34.

"There are no winners at the conclusion of these proceedings because the fact remains that two parents played an active part in the death of their son,” said Macon County Sheriff Robbie Holland of the ruling. “Their poor decisions and their actions created a great loss for their whole family especially their grandchildren. This tragedy could have been prevented if the adults involved would have acted like responsible adults. If Mr. and Mrs. Pruitt would have taken advantage of the opportunity to be good parents they would not be residing in our state's prison and their grandchildren would still have their father."

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New business touts potential of revitalizing downtown.

The Franklin Board of Aldermen held a special called meeting on Tuesday, March 18 to consider a new offer on town owned property that once served as Town Hall and a possible bridge design.

To begin, local businessmen Lenny Jordan and Ken Murphy of Lazy Hiker, LLC approached the board to present a lease agreement with an option to buy the property. Their goal: To bring Franklin its first microbrewery.

According to the proposed lease, the Lazy Hiker Brewery would offer “a tap room, a distillery, a restaurant, offices, or retail space.” Murphy spoke at the meeting in order to give the board a more detailed presentation of the business and the lease.

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Two Republicans reveal reasons for seeking the seat.

With the conclusion of the filing period for the 2014 election, candidates are gearing up for the campaign season. While many candidates will not see their name on the ballot until the November general election, several local and state offices will have a primary in May to decide between candidates of the same party.

The Macon County News will present candidate profiles on all primary candidates between now and May, and will then profile candidates vying for seats in November.

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Macon County Sheriff's Office detective Amy Stewart recently received honors from the North Carolina Department of Justice. The award, the Advanced Deputy Professional Law Enforcement Certificate was presented by the N.C. Sheriff's Education and Training Standards Commission on March 5, 2014.

Stewart, who has worked with the sheriff's office for nearly 20 years, said she was honored to gain the recognition.

“I've worked hard to achieve this, but I did it so that I could have the skills to do my job better and to help the community as much as I can. I look forward to continuing to work hard for the betterment of the area that we live in,” she said.

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The most important job you have as a parent is keeping your child safe. Each year thousands of young children are killed or injured in car accidents. In the United States during 2011, more than 650 children ages 12 years and younger died as occupants in motor vehicle crashes, and more than 148,000 were injured.

The western North Carolina community has come together to help host Buckle Up, Baby!, a free car seat safety clinic to help battle the alarming statistics.

Local law enforcement officers along with Angel Medical Center and Safe Kids NC have teamed up to host Buckle Up, Baby! to provide families in western North Carolina with the opportunity to get their car seat checked by certified car seat technicians.

 

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The Macon County Sheriff’s Office, Highlands Police Department and Franklin Police Department will participate in Operation Medicine Drop (OMD) on Saturday, March 22. OMD is a partnership of Safe Kids North Carolina, NC State Bureau of Investigation and local law enforcement agencies, to encourage the disposal of unused, unwanted and expired medications.

OMD helps prevent accidental poisonings, overdoses and drug abuse while protecting our environment. Since 2010, more than 50 million dosage units have been collected.

On Saturday, March 22, medications will be collected from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Kmart and Walmart in Franklin; and Highlands Pharmacy and Main Street Pharmacy in Highlands.

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Due to a budget shortfall brought on by the Federal budget sequester, Macon County commissioners voted to allocate Macon Program for Progress (MPP) $13,000 in emergency funds.

The $13,000 requested by MPP Executive Director Chuck Sutton, is needed for administrative costs associated with operating the HUD section 8 Rental Assistance Program.

This is the second time commissioners have allocated emergency funds to the program due to a budget shortfall as a result of the sequester. In June, MPP requested $12,000 in anticipation of 30 percent of federal funds being deterred. That request was made based on projected funding levels through the calendar year of 2013. Since the sequester, funding levels have not returned to original amounts, causing another shortfall in administration funds.

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The League of Women Voters and Venture Local Franklin will host the initial Community Town Hall Discussion Series on Monday, March 31, from 6 to 8 p.m. at Tartan Hall. The goal of this first discussion is to bring together ideas concerning the design and use of the gazebo property.

Organizers hope to have elected officials, designers, businesses, local groups, citizens, performers and any other stakeholders in attendance.

From 6 to 6:30 p.m., attendees will have the opportunity to peruse designs and speak with any designers or elected officials who may be present.

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A Macon County man charged with murder was given a $200,000 bond last Wednesday.

"In the criminal justice system, we have judges and magistrates who are required to set the bonds of defendants,” Sheriff Robbie Holland said of the bond. “While I may or may not agree with the amount set, the fact still remains that bonds are entirely at the discretion of the judicial officials."

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published: 10/18/2013
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