Complete Warrenton’s Bicycle-Pedestrian Plan Survey for a Chance to Win $50!

-Information courtesy Town of Warrenton NC’s Facebook page

The Town of Warrenton is interested in your feedback on bicycle and pedestrian plans. A grant from NC DOT is helping the Town develop plans and citizen feedback is critical.

Survey forms are available online, at Town Hall and also at the County Health Department and Library. Surveys can be turned in at any of these locations.

Upon completing a survey, you will automatically be registered for a drawing that includes a $50 cash prize!

Help us plan for the future!  Download the survey:

Survey Questionnaire ENGLISH

Survey Questionnaire SPANISH

Or click here to complete an online survey.

NC Farmers, Supporters to Attend Agriculture Awareness Event

-Press Release, NCDA&CS

The N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services is hosting Ag Awareness Day. Farmers, agribusiness leaders and Ag supporters will attend to show their support for North Carolina’s No. 1 industry and to thank legislators for passing the $240 million Hurricane Florence Ag Disaster Relief package. Participants will meet with legislators and attend a program in Bicentennial Plaza.

WHEN/WHERE:   

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Bicentennial Plaza, Raleigh (between the Agriculture Building and the N.C. Museum of History)

*8:30 a.m. – Buses will depart the fairgrounds bringing Ag Awareness Day participants downtown.

*9 – 11 a.m. – Participants will meet with their legislators.

*11:30 a.m. – Ag Awareness Day program begins in Bicentennial Plaza, including the following speakers:

Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler, Gov. Roy Cooper, Lt. Gov. Dan Forest, President Pro Tempore Phil Berger, Speaker Tim Moore, Senator Brent Jackson, Representative Jimmy Dixon, Senator Dan Blue, Representative John Bell, Senator Don Davis, Representative Brian Turner and NCSU Dean Richard Linton.

*All times are approximate.

VGCC Presents 7th Annual Dinner Theater: ‘Company’ by Stephen Sondheim

-Press Release, Vance-Granville Community College

“Company” by Stephen Sondheim

Tickets for Seventh Annual Dinner Theater will go on sale March 25!

Check out the details below of what promises to be an evening of fun, food and fellowship in the great Vance-Granville Drama and Culinary Arts tradition and get your tickets at www.vgcc.edu/dinnertheater. The event, once again involving the collaboration of the VGCC Drama and Culinary Arts departments, is scheduled for the evenings of Thursday, April 25 and Friday, April 26, 2019, in the Civic Center on VGCC’s Main Campus in Vance County. Dinner begins at 6 p.m. each evening.

Sondheim’s musical is a sophisticated and honest look at modern adult relationships.

From musical theatre’s most renowned composer, “Company” is largely regarded as a trailblazer of the dark-comedy, modern-musical genre and the winner of seven Tony Awards, including Best Musical, Best Score, Best Lyrics and Best Book.

On the night of his 35th birthday, confirmed bachelor Robert contemplates his unmarried state. Over the course of a series of dinners, drinks and even a wedding, his friends – “those good and crazy people [his] married friends” – explain the pros and cons of taking on a spouse. The habitually single Robert is forced to question his adamant retention of bachelorhood during a hilarious array of interactions.

“Company” features a brilliantly brisk and energetic score containing many of Stephen Sondheim’s best-known songs. The strength of the piece lies in its vivid yet real characters, meaning impressive technical aspects aren’t necessary to convey the story. It can be told as effectively with a cavalcade of automated set pieces as it can with a chair or two. Every audience member will see reflections of themselves in at least one of the characters onstage.

Betsy Henderson, VGCC’s Department Chair/Instructor of Humanities and Fine Arts, is the director of the play.

Tickets are $30 and are scheduled to go on sale on March 25. Audience members will be able to choose the table and specific seats they want at the same time that they buy their tickets online. Patrons are encouraged to purchase their tickets early in order to have the best chance of getting the seats they want for this year’s show.

For more information, visit www.vgcc.edu/dinnertheater.

State Broadband Office Publishes Homework Gap Report

-Information courtesy NC DIT

Eric Boyette, Secretary of the North Carolina Department of Information Technology (DIT) and State Chief Information Officer, announced today the release of the “The Homework Gap in North Carolina,” a report that provides communities with strategies to bridge the homework gap that occurs when students are assigned homework that requires internet access but lack an internet connection at home.

N.C. DIT’s Broadband Infrastructure Office developed the homework gap report in partnership with The William & Ida Friday Institute for Educational Innovation at North Carolina State University. This report contributes to a growing body of research and strategic policy recommendations designed to equip state and local policymakers, educators, and other key stakeholders with information to understand the homework gap and strategies to address it.

“We know we have many children in our state that are victims of this digital divide,” Secretary Boyette said. “Understanding the nature and scope of this problem is key to closing the homework gap.”

Governor Roy Cooper’s budget proposal makes closing the homework gap a significant priority. Governor Cooper proposes a $5 million fund to support schools that need internet hot spots for students and Wi-Fi technology for school buses.

“Too often I hear of students doing homework in the parking lots of fast food restaurants or driving long distances to use free Wi-Fi at churches and friends’ homes,” Governor Cooper said. “This is unacceptable in this day and age and it creates inequity in our educational system.”

Governor Cooper also signed Executive Order 91, which establishes a new Governor’s Task Force on Connecting North Carolina and directs state government leaders to identify and remove barriers to facilitate private-sector deployment of last-mile infrastructure, eliminate the homework gap, and support the adoption of affordable, high-speed internet access.

N.C. DIT has already begun implementing the report’s recommendations, including the BIO’s continued effort to gather more and better data through surveys such as the Speak Up survey. Speak Up is an annual research project and a free service to all schools and was the first online research tool designed to help parents share their ideas directly with schools and national policymakers. BIO partnered with the N.C. Department of Public Instruction to include homework gap specific questions in the 2018-2019 Speak Up survey.

One way the state is currently working to combat the homework gap is through the State Library of North Carolina and N.C. DIT’s pilot program with the Robeson County Public Library and Public Schools of Robeson County. The pilot program is funded by a $250,000 two-year grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services and will provide Robeson County Public Library with 35 Wi-Fi hotspot devices for up to 35 K-12 households.

To access the report, please visit The Homework Gap in North Carolina on the Broadband Infrastructure Office website. To take the Speak Up survey, please visit http://speakup.tomorrow.org.

NC Drivers May Soon Face Stricter Restrictions on Cell Phone Use

State lawmakers are working on getting a bill passed that would ban NC drivers from talking on their cell phones while operating a motor vehicle.

HB 144 proposes fines for first offenses of talking on the phone while driving. Subsequent convictions would result in fines and insurance points.

Exceptions would allow drivers to talk on cell phones while parked. Drivers 18 and older would also be able to use a mounted cell phone if the call could be placed and ended with a single button.

Drivers who experience emergency situations and emergency responders are exempt under the proposed bill.

The bill needs the approval of the House, Senate and NC governor to officially become law.

According to the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) website, North Carolina currently bans texting while driving for all drivers and talking while driving for those younger than 18 and all school bus drivers.

In last week’s Town Talk interview with North Carolina Insurance Commissioner and State Fire Marshal Mike Causey, the topic of HB 144 was briefly discussed.

“Distracted driving is the leading cause of deadly accidents today,” said Causey. “Texting and talking while driving have killed so many people needlessly.”

Causey believes the bill, which has been brought up several times in past years, will pass this go around thanks to “broad bipartisan support.”

“The time is now right with the number of deadly accidents and the pressure it’s putting on raising auto insurance rates. It’s a common sense safety move that would also help hold down insurance rates.”

Warren Co. Coop to Provide Transportation for Free Small Farms Luncheon

-Information and graphic courtesy Warren Co. Cooperative Extension Center

In honor of Small Farms Week – March 24-30, 2019 – the Warren Co. Cooperative Extension Center will provide transportation to a Small Farms Appreciation Luncheon in Greensboro on Wednesday, March 27, 2019.

The luncheon and transportation are free for farmers. You must RSVP by Wednesday, March 13, 2019, to William Landis at (252) 257-3640 if interested in attending.

The Warren Co. Center is also currently accepting canned food donations as part of their 2nd Annual Canned Food Drive. Please drop off donations at Warren Co. Cooperative Extension Center – 158 Rafters Lane, Warrenton, NC – by March 24. Food donations will support Loaves and Fishes Ministries of Warren County.

 

Triangle North Healthcare Foundation’s 2019 Grant Cycle is Open

-Press Release, Triangle North Healthcare Foundation 

Triangle North Healthcare Foundation’s Board of Directors has announced the launch of its 2019 grant cycle, now open through May 17, 2019.

The Foundation seeks programs and projects that will provide positive results in one or more of the five focus areas: Chronic Disease, Mental Health and Substance Use Disorders, Nutrition and Physical Activity, Reproductive Health, and Success in School as related to Healthy Lifestyles. Nonprofit organizations, government agencies, and schools are eligible to apply.

The link to the Foundation’s online grant application is available at the website: www.tnhfoundation.org 

Triangle North Healthcare Foundation, a regional healthcare grantmaking organization based in Henderson, NC, is a health legacy foundation that was established in 2011 following the merge of Maria Parham Medical Center and Duke Lifepoint.

The Foundation’s mission– to encourage, support, and invest in quality efforts that measurably improve health in the Triangle North area— is achieved through funding strategic initiatives, programs, and projects that focus on improving health.  The Foundation also supports programs that build capacity and develop leaders for nonprofits in the region.

The Foundation has launched a grant cycle each year since its grantmaking began in 2013. To date, the Foundation has invested over $1.5 million in over 60 projects serving the four counties in the region, Franklin, Granville, Vance, and Warren.

According to the Foundation’s Executive Director Val Short, the Foundation Board’s hope is that through grantee organizations and the people they serve, the Board’s vision for the future of our region will be realized…“to live in a healthy community.”

“Our hope is that the Foundation’s investment of grant funds in our communities will result in long-lasting improvements in the health and wellbeing of our children and adults,” Short said.

The Foundation staff is currently available to discuss ideas for grant projects or to assist with grant writing.  Call 252-598-0763 to schedule an appointment.  Information about current and past funded programs and projects is available on the website at www.tnhfoundation.org.

Warren Co. Coop Extension Planning Weekend Trip to NYC

-Information courtesy Warren County Cooperative Extension

The Warren County Cooperative Extension Office announces an upcoming opportunity to visit New York City.

Interested participants will depart from the Warren Co. Coop. Extension office at 9:30 p.m. on Friday, March 29, 2019, and will travel by bus to NYC throughout the evening. The bus will arrive in NYC at approximately 8 a.m. on Saturday, March 30, giving participants the day to shop, sightsee and explore the city on their own.

The bus will depart from NYC at 7 p.m. on March 30 and is expected to return to Warrenton in the early morning hours of Sunday, March 31.

Cost of the trip is $110 per person with a required $25 non-refundable deposit. Balance is due in full on Monday, March 18.

For more information, contact Crystal Smith at (252) 257-3640 or email [email protected]

NC Severe Weather Preparedness Week is March 3-9, 2019

-Information courtesy The National Weather Service – Raleigh

The 2019 North Carolina Severe Weather Preparedness Week runs from Sunday, March 3 through Saturday, March 9, 2019.    With the peak of North Carolina’s severe weather season right around the corner, NOW is the time to prepare! 

There are a lot of great resources that you can use to prepare for the severe weather season.  Please take a moment to visit the NWS Raleigh Severe Weather Preparedness Week web site at https://www.weather.gov/rah/2019ncswpw where you’ll find links to our daily severe weather topics and useful severe weather preparedness tips and information.   

In addition to making a severe weather safety plan, we strongly encourage everyone to participate in the Statewide Tornado Drill, which will occur on Wednesday, March 6, 2019, at 9:30 a.m.  Every school, business, workplace, and family across the state is strongly encouraged to participate in this drill. It is important that all schools and businesses are aware of the following important points about the tornado drill:

  • The drill will be broadcast on NOAA Weather Radio and the Emergency Alert System via the Required Monthly Test (RMT).  There will not be an actual Tornado Warning issued.
  • Many NOAA Weather Radio receivers (including the older Midland WR-100 radios that many schools have) do not sound an audible alert for the RMT product; instead, they may have a blinking light on the display to indicate that an RMT was received.  As such, when the RMT for the statewide tornado drill is initiated at 9:30 a.m. on Wednesday, March 6, 2019, there is a chance that your NOAA Weather Radio will not sound an alarm.
  • Since your NOAA Weather Radio may not sound an alarm at the time the RMT is issued, you will want to do one of the following:
    • Manually turn on your NOAA Weather Radio receiver and simply listen to the audio broadcast to hear when the RMT is issued, which will mark the beginning of the statewide tornado drill.
    • Simply plan to start your tornado drill on your own at 9:30 a.m.
  • There will be no follow-up statements issued by the NWS to mark the end of the statewide tornado drill. It will simply be over when your group, school, business, or organization feels that you have adequately practiced your tornado shelter procedures.
  • If there is actual severe weather occurring on the morning of March 6, 2019, the statewide tornado drill will be postponed.  The alternate date for the drill is Friday, March 8, 2019, at 9:30 a.m.
  • This drill and RMT will take the place of the usual weekly NOAA Weather Radio Alert test (RWT).  That is, there will not be a weekly radio test done between 11 a.m. and noon on that day.

Please share this information and encourage all of your friends, family, neighbors, co-workers, and especially all schools, to take the opportunity next Wednesday to participate in the drill, and to take a few moments to learn more about severe weather preparedness. 

Paid Assistance Needed for 2020 US Census

-Information courtesy the US Census Bureau

In preparation for next years Census, the Census Bureau is now offering jobs this spring and summer entailing verification of maps. The individual will be given a digital device with maps near their home. The individual would then survey the area and make the necessary changes to the maps.

In return, the Census will reimburse the individual at the rate of $.58/mile driven and for Franklin & Vance counties $17.50/hr., Warren County, $16.00/hr., and Halifax County, $13.50/hr.

Hours are flexible and up to the individual who sets their own schedule. Apply online at www.2020census.gov/jobs.

(This is not a paid advertisement)