Issues

Community concerns over Norafin plant

A topic of much discussion at the last town council meeting was the new Norafin factory that is going in across from Mills River Elementary. While the factory is projected to bring jobs to Mills River, and that’s clearly a very good thing, many in the community have rightfully questioned the location of the plant. Why did it have to be located there, and what impact will it have on the children at the school in terms of noise pollution, air pollution, chemicals, and so on? When asked whether the plant had undergone an environmental impact study at the local level before being placed so close to a school where hundreds of our children are spending their days, the answer…

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Mills River Sample Ballot

The North Carolina Board of Elections has finalized the Mills River Town Council election ballot, and has made it visible on their website. You can view it below (and remember, you will be voting for one candidate from each of the three districts). For future elections, you may view the ballot as soon as it’s posted by visiting this website and following the posted instructions.

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Hurricane Relief Fundraiser

Last night, we had a great evening out at Sierra Nevada raising money for Hurricane Irma relief (this money will go directly to relief organizations in Florida and Puerto Rico). As a group, we raised $700. Every single dollar goes towards helping people who are in desperate need of assistance, and let me assure you, the scenes of devastation that we have seen on television barely scratch the surface of what is actually happening, especially in Puerto Rico. If you’re looking for a way that you can help, we’re donating through Global Giving, which is a BBB-accredited charity which only works with accredited, fully vetted relief agencies for disaster relief. All donations are tax deductible, so give today!

Issues

What Can be Done for Mills River Farmers?

What can we do to help local Mills River farmers, and to preserve the green space that defines our community? We’re all familiar with the struggles faced by family farmers; we’re also aware that farms represent fresh fruit and vegetables, along with very visible green space and that this important resource must be protected. A misconception, however, is that the federal government provides enough of a subsidy to make small area farms viable. This has to be handled on the local and state level, and I’ll discuss why below. I think with some innovative new ideas and cooperation between area municipalities and the state government, we could help family farmers become more profitable, increase the visibility of Mills River farming…

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Vision

My Vision for Mills River

I grew up in Florida during the 1970’s and 1980’s. That was a tough time in Florida, because the orange groves disappeared, and were replaced by strip malls and housing developments and apartment complexes. Cities like Ormond Beach and Spruce Creek and Altamont Springs became indistinguishable from larger cities like Daytona Beach or Orlando. Everything began to revolve around the service industry. The Florida that exists now is not even close to being the same place where I grew up. That could happen in Mills River. We are already on our way. That’s something I don’t want to see happen here. When my family would come back to North Carolina and Tennessee during the summers, I loved seeing all the…

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Friday Night at Sierra Nevada

Tonight my family spent a terrific night talking to some great people at Sierra Nevada. We are there often, of course, but tonight was really special. If you’re not visiting one of the best restaurants and breweries in town (especially since they are such a tremendous resource and friend to Mills River), you should be! They are environmentally friendly, they are responsible, they employ our friends and neighbors, they produce more electricity than they use, and they buy local goods and produce. They also take care of their green spaces, and in fact, employ foresters to take care of their property (removing invasive species, and planting native foliage) as well as adjacent property at the Asheville Airport. All of the…

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Issues

What are the issues?

There are numerous challenges currently facing Mills River, or which will become issues in the near future. For too long, the attitude of the current town council has been reactionary rather than proactive, and if we are to maintain the ‘small town’ community atmosphere in Mills River while promoting responsible growth, we need new leadership. So what are the issues facing Mills River? TAXES Property taxes for Mills River residents have, in the last year, quadrupled. Many of the people that I’m speaking to have felt this increase, because it’s hitting them squarely in the wallet (if you own a house valued at $300,000, then your taxes just went up by $360 per year). The biggest reason for this increase…

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Issues

Who I Am, Why I’m Running

Why would anyone want to run for town council in Mills River, North Carolina? Well, I’m running because I think I’m uniquely positioned to do a good job for this growing community. After working my way through college at Stetson University in Florida (working the night shift at a newspaper), I began a long career in information technology. I also possess a Master’s degree from UNC-Wilmington. At Barnes and Noble and Sterling Publishing, I worked as a Systems Administrator and, later, as a Digital Project Manager, where I was responsible for developing departmental budgets, multi-million dollar websites, and IT infrastructure projects. I have a tremendous amount of experience with large-scale budgets and with planning multiple projects at once. Along with…

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