More than 200 acres of scattered tracts along the meandering Pigeon River Valley in Haywood County are quiet sentries to the not-so-pretty past of Canton’s century-old paper mill.
Mountains of toxin-laced sludge and coal ash are buried in vast industrial dumps on the outskirts of town, hidden relics of the mill’s long papermaking presence here. The old unlined landfills leapfrog along a 2-mile section of the Pigeon River downstream of the mill.
Noise was the main topic of conversation at the Sept. 18 meeting of the Macon County Planning Board. The county’s board of commissioners had charged the planning board with looking into a noise ordinance last month after Matlock Creek resident Betty Bennett approached them complaining of noise and partying so bad she and her husband could not sleep at night.
The retirement of Jackson County’s current sheriff — and widespread dissatisfaction with the way Jimmy Ashe ran his office — brought out a field of primary election candidates nine deep. And with the general election just around the corner, change is a prime topic of conversation for the two candidates remaining, Democrat Chip Hall and Republican Curtis Lambert.
The Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians has joined a growing number of local governments opposing the state legislature’s decision to allow hydraulic fracturing, called fracking, in North Carolina. Earlier this month, tribal council passed a resolution outlawing the practice on tribal lands, a force of authority stronger than what county and municipal governments possess.
It’s going to be an eventful next few days in Waynesville. Haywood Pathways Center is in the final stretch of planning a three-day blitz on the old Hazelwood prison, transforming the former state detention center into a combined soup kitchen, halfway house and homeless shelter. They’ll be doing it with the help of an army of volunteers, untold gallons of paint and board-feet of wood — and help from TV personality Ty Pennington.