OD Rate High in Buncombe, Sheriff Wants Higher Pay for Jail Workers

Buncombe To Receive Funding To Fight Opioids

(Buncombe County, NC) -- Buncombe County is about to start receiving funding to help battle opioids. WLOS-TV reports the county is being awarded 16-million-dollars over the next 17-years, with more than 600-thousand-dollars coming this spring. Overdose deaths climbed to over 200 in Buncombe County between 2019 and 2020. More on the funding will be discussed by county commissioners tonight.

Most Operations Normal After Hospital Fire

(Hendersonville, NC) -- Most services at a hospital in Hendersonville are back to normal following a fire. Investigators revealed yesterday that flames broke out at UNC Pardee Hospital last week during a construction accident on the roof. The second and third floors were damaged. The departments affected have all resumed normal operations except for the Management Services Organization.

Hendersonville Leaders Discussing Incentives For Company

(Hendersonville, NC) -- Hendersonville officials are discussing details in the potential move of a new company into the city. WLOS-TV reports a public hearing will be held this Thursday morning over a proposal to provide the company with five-million-dollars in economic incentives for its planned location near the Berkeley Ball Park. The move would provide more than 100 new jobs.

Buncombe Sheriff Wants Higher Pay For Jail Workers

(Buncombe County, NC) -- Buncombe County's sheriff wants more pay for his detention officers. Sheriff Quentin Miller is expected to propose a pay increase at the county commission meeting later today. WLOS-TV reports the sheriff's office lost 90 jail workers last year, but was only able to fill less than 70 of the openings.

Overdose Deaths Rate High In Buncombe County

(Buncombe County, NC) -- Overdose deaths in Buncombe County are among the top in the state. Info from Health and Human Services shows close to 180 people died of overdoses from January 2020 to August 2021. That rate per 100-thousand-people is among the highest for North Carolina. Over 16-thousand people have died from overdoses in North Carolina over the past two-decades.

Part Of I-26 Closing For Work

(Henderson County, NC) -- Drivers in Henderson County need to be aware of road closures on I-26. The interstate westbound between U.S. 64 and U.S. 25 Business will be closed over the next few nights after 8 p.m. The DOT is making preparations for the interstate widening project. The closures should end by six each morning.

CMS Board Meeting To Discuss Superintendent

(Charlotte, NC) -- The Charlotte-Mecklenburg school board could be making some big decisions about the superintendent position. Members are holding an emergency meeting today to discuss the contract of Earnest Winston. He's held the position since August of 2019 after Clayton Wilcox resigned. His contract runs through June 2025.

American Airlines Drops Face Mask Requirement

(Charlotte, NC) -- Customers flying American Airlines out of Charlotte are no longer required to wear a face mask. The airline decided to drop the mandate yesterday after a judge's decision and the TSA ended the requirement. Masks have been required on planes for more than two-years. Charlotte is American's biggest hub in the southeast.

Union County Death Penalty Trial Begins Next Month

(Union County, NC) -- A death penalty trial is beginning soon in Union County. WSOC-TV reports Joshua Burgess is scheduled to be tried next month on charges of murder, statutory rape and kidnapping. He's accused of strangling and slitting his 15-year-old daughter's throat in August 2019. The defense is attempting to have his admission to the crime tossed out before the trial begins.

Charlotte Walmarts Accused Of Overcharging

(Charlotte, NC) -- Customers at some Charlotte-area Walmarts have been paying higher prices than they should. The state's Department of Agriculture has listed five Mecklenburg County locations that overcharged excessively in the first quarter of this year. An administrator told NBC Charlotte that labor shortages and inflation have caused problems to ensure customers are paying correct prices. Some pinpointed errors reached as high as 40-percent above the correct price.

Suspect Accused Of Pouring Gas On Boone Church

(Boone, NC) -- A suspect is accused of pouring gasoline on a church in Boone. Investigators say a 44-year-old man went to Saint Elizabeth Catholic Church, where he dumped gas on a door and sidewalk early Saturday morning. Boone police charged the man with aiding in the burning of a religious building.

Car Break-Ins Reported At UNC Charlotte

(Charlotte, NC) -- Campus police at UNC Charlotte are investigating a rash of car break-ins. Investigators told WBTV that more than 30 break-ins were reported between last Thursday and Sunday. They spanned two lots and the South Village Parking Deck. The university says more security cameras are being added.

Panthers Preparing For NFL Draft

(Charlotte, NC) -- Leaders with the Panthers are gearing up for next week's NFL draft. Carolina is slated with the sixth pick in the first round, but draft experts aren't unanimous on who the team is targeting. Takes from ESPN, The Athletic and The NFL Network listed quarterback Malik Willis, quarterback Kenny Pickett, and tackle Ikem Ekonwu. Several other tackles are being considered. The Panthers' second pick won't come until the fourth round.

O'Neal Calls For Comprehensive Effort To Combat Gun Violence In Her First State Of The City Address

(Durham, NC) -- In her first State of the City Address Monday night, Durham Mayor Elaine O'Neal listed combating gun violence as the number one challenge of her administration. "Our city is in crisis." O'Neal said of the 182-shootings so far this year in Durham. In addition to requesting increased funding to hire and retain more police officers, the Mayor also called on citizens and community organizations to get involved with youth at the grass roots level. O'Neal she and county leaders are working on a comprehensive strategy to reduce violent crime in the city.

City Council Meeting Will Be Virtual Today Following Announcement That Mayor Baldwin Has Tested Positive For COVID-19

(Raleigh, NC) -- Raleigh Mayor Mary Ann Baldwin has been diagnosed with COVID-19. In a statement released Monday, Baldwin confirmed that she had tested positive for the virus, but that she has experienced no symptoms. Meanwhile, the regularly scheduled meeting of the City Council today, has been moved from in-person to virtual out of an abundance of caution. This comes as Raleigh police and firefighters are still planning a demonstration outside City Hall over wages and benefits.

Responding To Federal Judge's Ruling RDU Cancels Mandatory Face Mask Order

(Wake County, NC) -- Air travelers flying in and out of RDU International Airport are no longer required to wear masks or face coverings. The announcement came Monday after federal judge in Florida issued a ruling voiding a nationwide mandate at airports and other mass transportation terminals. The judge said that the mandate exceeded the authority U.S. health officials have in the fight against COVID-19. The Justice Department has not decided whether or not to challenge the order.

Man Awaiting Trial On Cold Case Murder In Johnston County, Dies In Custody

(Raleigh, NC) -- A man who was arrested three years ago in connection with a cold case murder in Johnston County, has died in custody. Larry Scott, who was awaiting trial on charges of first degree rape, murder and kidnapping in the 1972 death of Bonnie Neighbors, died Friday at Central Prison in Raleigh. Authorities did not provide any additional details regarding the circumstances surrounding Scott's death.

North Carolina Democratic Organization Withdraws Its Support For Congressional Candidate

(Raleigh, NC) -- A North Carolina Democratic group has withdrawn its support for a congressional candidate after it was revealed that she received contributions from a conservative pro-Israel lobbying organization. The progressive caucus of the North Carolina Democratic Party announced Monday that it will no longer support State Senator Valerie Foushee in her bid to replace retiring Congressman David Price. Recent campaign finance filings show Foushee received more than 165-thousand dollars from the American Israeli Public Affairs Committee.

Duke Seven Foot Big Man Mark Williams Declares His Intention To Enter The NBA Draft

(Durham, NC) -- Duke center Mark Williams has announced his intentions to enter the NBA Draft. In a statement released Monday, the seven-foot-one Williams thanked Blue Devil fans for their support over the past two years, but said playing for the NBA has always been a dream of his. Williams is widely considered a likely first round draft pick and potential lottery pick. Williams was named the ACC Defensive Player of the Year while helping the Blue Devils win the regular season title.

Greensboro Police Chief Retiring

(Greensboro, NC) -- Greensboro Police Chief Brian James has announced his retirement at the end of May. He has served a little more than two years as chief, after more than 20 years with the department. Officials say Teresa Biffle, a 27-year veteran of the force and deputy chief of the management bureau, will serve as interim police chief.

Two Young Children, Two Adults Found Dead In Burning House

(Lexington, NC) -- Two young children and two adults have been found dead in a house fire in Davie County. Officials say a person driving by Monday night saw the house on fire and drove down the road to alert the Cooleemee Fire Department. Even though they responded within minutes, the house was engulfed when they got on the scene. The Davie County Sheriff says the children were four years old and eight months old. Autopsies will be performed to determine all of the victims' exact causes of death.

Hazmat Responders Called to Aerospace Business in Winston-Salem

(Winston-Salem, NC) -- Fire department officials say hazmat responders were called out and some 200 people had to be evacuated at Collins Aerospace Monday morning. Investigators say the incident involved high levels of sulfur dioxide and hydrogen gas that came from overcharged backup batteries. Crews removed the batteries and the building was ventilated for the rest of the day. No one was injured and employees will return to work Tuesday.

Kernersville Gets New Industrial Park

(Winston-Salem, NC) -- Ground has been broken for a new industrial park in Kernersville. The Piedmont Commerce Center will offer a million and a half square-feet of space. NorthPoint Developers say construction on the project is set to be finished between end of this year and the first quarter of 2023. The cost of developing the property is 129-million-dollars.

Greensboro Real Estate Reportedly Notes Huge Drop in Home Sales

(Greensboro, PA) -- A national real estate brokerage company says one of the second biggest reductions in home-sales prices in the country is in Greensboro. The chief economist for Redfin says the combination of surging mortgage rates and record-high home prices is causing more homebuyers to drop out of the market. The biggest declines were reported in Allentown, Pennsylvania, Greensboro, North Carolina, and Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

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