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Ashe County wreck report

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The following are collision reports posted by the N.C. Highway Patrol in Ashe County and are considered public record.Aug. 8Highway 221A single-vehicle accident occurred at 12:06 p.m. on Highway 221 near the Watauga County line.According to the narrative, a vehicle driven by Kathryn Lumpkin of Blowing Rock was traveling south when she ran off the right shoulder of the road and struck a fence. The vehicle came to rest in a field. The 2010 Jeep suffered an estimated $4,000 in damages and was considered not driveable.Lumpkin was cited for lane control violation.Jefferson

 

Golfers finish runner-up in first match

The Lady Huskies opened the season with a second place finish at Cross Creek Country Club on Tuesday, the first non-conference tuneup for the upcoming Mountain Valley Athletic Conference season.South Stokes finished first followed by Ashe, East Surry, Mount Airy, Elkin, Surry Central and North Surry.Ashe had all four golfers finish par or better. Sarah Hardin had the top score of 51, a total of 12 shots under par. Savannah Brooks shot 55 (8-under), Olivia Barr shot 56 (7...

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Sales bounce back in July

After a soft June, local realtors were kept busy in July with sales hitting their best mark in nine months. At the same time the number of homes for sale hit a high for the year, while mortgage rates hit a low.There were 125 homes sold worth $30.54 million last month, a 37 percent increase over the 91 homes sold in June and the most sold since 147 sold last October. That’s according to the High Country Multiple Listing Service, which tracks realtor-assisted sales in Ashe, Ave...

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There has to be a better way to run a state

Exhausted legislators finally saw the closing gavel and heard the fat lady sing the “sine die,” followed quickly by the Hallelujah chorus striking up the perennial tune, “There has to be a better way to run a state.”

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The foolish choice for Medicaid expansion

When you consider all the bad choices made by the General Assembly and Governor Pat McCrory in the last two years—and there have been too many to mention—the one that may make the least sense was the decision not to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act and therefore provide health coverage for more than 400,000 low income adults who are currently uninsured.That point was reinforced dramatically recently by a national report that quantified how much federal fund...

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North Carolina’s July employment figures released

The state’s seasonally adjusted July unemployment rate was 6.5 percent, increasing 0.1 of a percentage point from June’s revised rate of 6.4 percent.The national rate increased 0.1 of a percentage point to 6.2 percent.North Carolina’s July 2014 unemployment rate was 1.6 percentage points lower than a year ago.The number of people employed decreased 19,848 over the month to 4,369,632, and increased 59,498 over the year.The number of...

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Who should decide if a judge is ‘too old’ to serve?

At the end of this month, N.C. Supreme Court Chief Justice Sarah Parker will retire from her position on the bench, which she has held since 2006. Gov. Pat McCrory has already announced that current Supreme Court Justice Mark Martin will be appointed to fill the remainder of her term.Parker ultimately didn’t have any choice in stepping down from the court. In North Carolina, judges and justices are forced to retire when they turn 72, which Parker did this month.

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Wastewater incident occurs in West Jefferson

An estimated total volume of 8000 gallons of untreated wastewater escaped from a manhole at the Wastewater Treatment Plant in West Jefferson on Aug. 21, which caused an estimated 6000 gallons, of the 8000 gallons spilled, to flow into an unnamed tributary that flows into Little Buffalo Creek in the New River Basin.“We had a few issues and have people in who are working on it,” Town Manager Brantley Price said. “It happened where it comes in to the plant. The pumps...

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Huskies win shootout, 50-42

Ashe County’s season opener got off to a slow start with North Surry, but both offenses found their high gear after the first quarter.The Huskies held on to win, 50-42.After a pair of offensive possessions ended with turnovers in the first quarter, Ashe finally got on the board with a 26-yard touchdown pass from Connor Bowers to Jacob Blevins. Kendall Richardson’s extra point was good to take a 7-0 lead with 4:56 left in the first.North Surry respo...

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KAB Shoe Drive exceeds goal

Keep Ashe Beautiful wrapped up its Shoe Drive earlier this month.The shoe drive was a collaboration with Goodwill Industries.“We reached our goal of 100 bags with 25 pairs of shoes plus,” Elaine Graham, executive director of Keep Ashe Beautiful, said. “The total was 158 bags. We will use the funds from this collection for educational programs mostly in our schools.”“Goodwill was honored to be a part of helping to keep Ashe beautif...

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Stick with the winning playbook

Gov. Pat McCrory and some Republican lawmakers in the General Assembly say they need more “tools” for economic development in North Carolina — by which they mean targeted tax breaks and corporate subsidies. They often point to South Carolina, Georgia, Virginia, Tennessee, and other states in our neighborhood that, they say, are more aggressive in using economic incentives to recruit or retain businesses.I disagree with incentive advocates on policy grounds. Govern...

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Buddy Walk of the High Country set for Sept. 13

Two years and a little bit ago, two families in Ashe County welcomed home new babies.They were greeted excitedly by siblings, grandparents, friends and family. Not an unusual story, right? Except in this case, both of the babies were born with an extra chromosome, which causes a genetic condition called Down syndrome.This additional genetic material alters the course of development and causes the characteristics associated with Down syndrome. A few of the common physical...

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Lady Huskies sweep North Wilkes

The Lady Huskies opened conference play with an impressive 9-0 win over North Wilkes on Thursday.Top seeded Hallie Brown gutted out a 6-3, 6-0 win over Sarah Bumgarner in spite of not feeling well according to head coach Larry Dix.Grace Miller earned a 6-0, 6-0 win over Angela Jordan. Third seeded Maggie Witherspoon beat Laura Phillips, 6-0, 6-0.In the fourth seeded matchup, Rae Zeller took a 6-0, 6-0 win over Katilyn Billings.Keely Caddell captured...

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JV and varsity soccer win at Alexander

Both varsity and junior varsity squads improved to 2-0 on the season with victories at Alexander Central on Thursday.The JV game was a defensive battle throughout until Lucas Pruitt came away with a goal on an Ashe County corner kick to give the Huskies a 1-0 win.In the varsity game, the Huskies played without Miguel Ramos and Cesar Ruiz, but were still able to outscore a feisty Alexander Central squad, 3-2.Eric Barcenas netted the first Ashe goal of the game....

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Grayson Highlands Band to perform for BackStreet Summer Concerts

Once again, enjoy music under the stars this Friday night, August 22, as the Grayson Highlands Band performs as part of the 2014 Backstreet Park Concert Series. Bring a blanket or a lawn chair and listen to old-time music the way it used to be played on the streets of West Jefferson.

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Voters should be prepared for changes in this year’s elections

A lawsuit challenging North Carolina’s controversial new voting law is still ongoing, but a federal judge recently ruled that this year’s elections will proceed with that law in effect.The plaintiffs in the case, which include the League of Women Voters, the North Carolina NAACP and others, were seeking an injunction that would have blocked cuts to early voting and prevented a repeal of same-day voter registration from being implemented until a full trial is held in 201...

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Community members come together to try and save Lowes Foods

Ashe County citizens are trying to harness the power of social media while at the same time attempting to change the minds of those that decided to close the Lowes Foods store in West Jefferson.With roughly a month left until the closing date announced for the store (Sept. 19), a group of concerned community members decided to make a Facebook Page and titled it “Save West Jefferson’s Lowes Food.” The page was created on Aug. 17.In the first two days, th...

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Pay reform meets student needs

Critics of the Republican-led General Assembly allege that the teacher-pay raise included in this year’s state budget could have been implemented in a much simpler fashion: by giving across-the-board hikes to all rather than giving large raises to early-career teachers and relatively small raises to some experienced ones.The critics are correct. Across-the-board raises would have been simpler. But that doesn’t mean they would have been the best policy. You see, North Ca...

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