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Asheville Citizen-Times from Asheville, North Carolina • Page 2

Asheville, North Carolina
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A2 Today's Reader Feedback: Join in the discussion at Today, readers are talking about trying a teen as an adult in a September gang shooting. WEDNESDAY November 7, 2007 ASHEVILLE CITIZEN-TIMES Mountains Editor Brian Ponder, 232-5883 or Mountains Troopers crack down County explores cleanup options inn overweight tacks BRIEFS Missing Asheville woman found ASHEVILLE Rescue workers conducted an intensive search Friday before finding a woman missing in West Asheville. Authorities said the woman suffers from dementia and they had feared for her safety. City officials said the woman had last been seen at the BP station at the corner of Patton Avenue and Johnston Boulevard. Searchers used the reverse on system and canvassed the area to notify residents.

They also used a Mission Air Medical Ambulance helicopter and search dogs. Two arson arrests made HENDERSONVILLE The Henderson Sheriffs Office has made two arrests in unrelated arson cases. The Sheriffs Office arrested Mary Rosalee Pace, 43, and charged her with one felony count of first-degree arsoa Pace is accused of damaging her ex-boyfriend's home Sunday by knocking out more than 20 windows and setting fire to the side of the residence. She was being held in the Henderson County Detention Center. Bond was set at $40,000.

The second arrest is related to an Oct 15 fire at 1450 Laurel Mountain View Drive. Detectives arrested Mary Lou Hughes, 41, and charged her with one felony count of fraudulently burning a dwelling. She was being held in the Henderson County Detention Center. Bond was set at $8,000. i-t1vrv 1 A By Mike McWilllams MARS HILL So far this year, state troopers have found tractor-trailers carrying a total of 23.3 million pounds in excess weight on Western North Carolina roads, fetching about $1 million in fines.

More than 1,600 trucks have been put out of service for violations, records show. "When you see numbers like that, it makes it pretty apparent that overweight trucks are a problem in Western North Carolina," N.C. Highway Patrol Sgt. Pat Staggs said Tuesday. "If the truck is overweight, there are a lot of factors, as far as the stopping distances, damage to roadways and bridges, those sorts of things." With that in mind, the Highway Patrol parked a swath of troopers along roadsides Tuesday as part of a weight enforcement crackdown on tractor-trailers and commercial vehicles.

The goal is to reduce collisions and increase safety on highways and interstates, troopers said. The enforcement program ends Thursday evening and will primarily focus on commercial motor vehicles exceeding state weight restrictions in Buncombe, Madison and Henderson counties. The Highway Patrol kicked off the crackdown at a news conference Tuesday at the state welcome center along Interstate 26 in Madison County. Troopers also will be inspecting vehicles for unsafe loads, and mechanical and driver violations. There are two, two-way permanent weigh stations in WNC, including one along Interstate 40 in Asheville and one on I-26 in Hendersonville.

Roughly one-third of the tractor-trailers that attempt to bypass the weigh stations are eventually cited for weight, mechanical or driver violations, Highway Patrol First Sgt. J.R. Fairchild said. A typical tractor-trailer cannot exceed 80,000 pounds. Several drivers also try to avoid the weigh stations by taking roads around them, Fairchild said.

Such routes are often well known to Art, culture workshop for teachers BENT CREEK HandMade in America's Craft Across the Curriculum program will present a workshop geared to helping teachers experience and appreciate Japanese art and culture. The workshop will offer tools for teachers to integrate Japanese cultural practices and traditions into school curriculum, including lessons in tea ceremony, the kimono and Japanese storytelling. The workshop will be held 9:30 a.m.--3:30 p.m. Saturday at the N.C. Arboretum library.

For more information, call Janiece Meek at 252-0121, ext. 316. STEVE Statesville weigh station operator David Dick talks to a driver at the welcome center on Interstate 26 in Madison County. The Highway Patrol set up a temporary weigh station Tuesday at the N.C. Welcome Center outside of Mars Hill as part of a crackdown on overweight trucks In Buncombe and Madison counties.

By Clarke Morrison ASHEVILLE Buncombe County's attorney will explore ways the county could legally force a cleanup of contamination at the former CTS plant site on Mills Gap Road, county commissioners voted unanimously Tuesday. One option could be a lawsuit against federal and state environmental officials or the company, Commissioner David Gantt said. The action followed more pleas from neighbors who said their health and the value of their property are at risk from chemicals in the soil and groundwater left behind by the manufacturer of industrial switches and resistors. "We're going to do everything in our power to make sure you are safe and your health is protected," Gantt said. "You have a reasonable expectation to be safe.

We're going to work for results, not rhetoric." Commissioners also pledged that any residents who fear their well might have been contaminated can get their water tested at no charge. Some neighbors of the Skyland site said they were concerned the county won't do enough. "We want a full-scale cleanup," resident Aaron Penland said. "We do not want a Band-Aid. Get to the root of the problem, and clean it all up." CTS operated on the site for more than 20 years before closing in 1986.

Testing by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in 1990 showed high levels of toxic substances such as the solvent trichloroethylene, cadmium and magnesium in soil and stream samples. State tests in 1999 found an oily mess oozing from springs next to the site. But cleanup to remove contaminants from soil under the plant didn't begin until last year. Dr.

Vicki Ittel, health director at the Buncombe County Health Center, said Tuesday there continues to be significant contamination in the springs. She said state and federal officials will start testing more wells next month, and residents' health will be assessed. "You are our first line of protection in this county," resident Therese Figura said. "Results count. Everything else is truck drivers and are relayed via CB radio or posted on Web sites, Fairchild said.

"If you took the Asheville weigh station on a typical shift, you'll see dozens and dozens (of bypassing trucks) on a typical day," Fairchild said. Fifty-60 troopers will be part of the crackdown. Troopers will set up temporary weigh stations along bypass routes using portable scales. I Motorists may report dangerous driving to the Highway Patrol by dialing HP on their cell phones. TRUCK STATISTICS The N.C.

Highway Patrol caught more than 33 million pounds of excessive weight last year on Western North Carolina roads. So far this year, 23.3 million pounds' of excessive weight has been cited in WNC. An average of 50,000 tractor-trailers pass through the east and west bound weigh stations on Interstate 40 in Asheville. Grove Park will be on Food Network ASHEVILLE "The Food Network Challenge: Edible Ornaments," filmed at The Grove Park Inn Resort Spa, will premiere at 8 p.m. Nov.

25 on the Food Network. The competition was composed of four chefs or designers from around the country. Each worked to decorate an 8-foot holiday tree with "edible ornaments." The contest consisted of three categories: garland, ornaments and tree topper. Aaron Morgan, the executive chef at The Grove Park Inn, was one of the judges. The grand-prize winner received $10,000.

Search for elderly hikers expands School starts attendance plan ASHEVILLE The administration and student body at Erwin Middle School has implemented a plan to improve the school's attendance. With the aid of scoreboards and a point value system based on weekly percentages, the school tracks the students' attendance rate. As part of the competition, a winning team from each grade level will be announced each nine weeks, and the competition will begin again. Along with other incentives, winners will get gift certificates to the Outdoor Fun Family Center, Fun Depot and Papa's Pizza. From staff reports By Adam BehsudI ABEHSUDISSCITIZEN-TIMESCOM BREVARD Rescue crews planned to continue a search this morning for an elderly couple missing since leaving for a hike in Pisgah National Forest two weeks ago.

Authorities found a vehicle belonging to John Bryant, 79, and Irene Bryant, 84, parked at Yellow Gap Road off of U.S. 276 in Transylvania County. The couple are believed to have been missing since Oct. 21 after leaving their vehicle. Family reported them missing to the Henderson County Sheriff's Office, which launched a search of the area Tuesday and led to the vehicle's discovery.

"There is no indication as to which trail they may have taken," said Brian Kreigsman, assistant chief of the Brevard Rescue Squad. "We're looking at quite an extensive area." He said there is evidence that Irene Bryant used her cell phone to call 911 about 4 p.m. Oct 21, but because of a lost signal, it never reached an emergency call center. The cell phone provider was also not able to lock onto the position using GPS because of the dropped caL The Bryants are "avid hikers" who have experi ence hiking trails in the area, said Kreigsman, who also is chief detective for the Transylvania County Sheriffs Office. He said more than 30 people and search-and-rescue dogs will join the search today that has involved a helicopter, all-terrain vehicles and people on foot.

The Henderson and Transylvania County Sheriff's Offices, Brevard Rescue Squad and the U.S. Forest Service have teamed up to look for the couple. To provide information, call the Henderson County Sheriffs Office at 697-4911. SPECIAL TO THE CITIZEN-HMES Irene and John Bryant are believed to have been missing since Oct 21. Call the Henderson County Sheriffs Office at 697-4911 with any information.

Legislators start taking sides in governor i ce Today on Get full Election Day coverage including results, videos and photo galleries at View a photo gallery from the fire at Ashley Furniture HomeStore. View a photo gallery from the Josh Hoge, The Last Goodnight and Elliott Yamin concert held this weekend at The Orange Peel. Visit to view video of Elliott Yamin and Josh Hoge performing at The Orange Peel. Get the latest celebrity news and post your comments on the Dishin' Divas blog at Listen to a podcast featuring Bain Mattox and Shot From Guns at takeSonllne.commuslc. The band will be performing at The Grey Eagle on Saturday night.

Download or listen online to a new "Beer Guy" podcast. This week, Tony Kiss is chatting up Adam Avery, the president and brewmaster of Avery Brewing in Boulder, who makes some heavy-hopped monsters for the true craft brew aficionado. This article appeared in some TUesday copies of the Citizen-Times. By Jordan Schrader JSCHRADE.JCITIZEN-TIMES.COM ASHEVILLE While representing Buncombe County in the state House, Marie Colton achieved a higher rank than any female North Carolina lawmaker before her. The only woman to hold a more prestigious legislative title since then is Beverly Perdue, who as lieutenant governor is also president of the Senate.

Now that Perdue is look McDowell, Roger West, of Cherokee, and Phillip Frye, of Mitchell, and Senate Deputy Minority Leader Tom Apodaca, of Henderson, in throwing their support behind their former colleague Smith, said Erwin, a former Henderson County sheriff. "When you work with someone, you have a better feel for the kind of person they are, you understand their work ethic their value system," Erwin said. Colton, the first female House speaker pro tempore, said she saw promise in Moore while helping him Democratic lawmakers have gone solidly for Perdue. Reps. Susan Fisher and Bruce Goforth said they have endorsed her.

So has Sen. Martin Nesbitt, according to the Perdue campaign. Perdue also counts Sen. John Snow, of Cherokee County, as a supporter. The Republican defeated by Snow in 2004, former Sen.

Bob Carpenter, of Franklin, supports Sen. Fred Smith for governor, according to Smith's coordinator for WNC, George Erwin. Carpenter joins Reps. Mitch Gillespie, of learn the ropes representative. She admires 1 managed, as tn.

state retirement tu which 85-year-old Colton receives her pension. "I don't want to try to be a kingmaker or anything," cautions Colton, who says Perdue would also do well. "They asked me, would I come out publicly for him." Also running are Bob Orr, a Hendersonville native and former state Supreme Court justice, and Salisbury attorney Bill Graham, both Republicans. ing to break one more glass ceiling by running for governor, her fellow trailblazer is urging voters to support her opponent. Colton and five other women who have served in the General Assembly endorsed Richard Moore on Monday in a letter the state treasurer no doubt hopes will help draw female voters from Perdue, his rival for the Democratic nomination.

Many current and former mountain legislators have taken a side in the race for governor. Buncombe County's present-day DELIVERY ISSUES I PLACE YOUR AD ASMKVnj.E CITIZEN-TIMES Vt Tl IF i POSTMASTER i Send address changes to: i Asheville Citizen-Times I P.O. Box 2090 I Asheville, NC 28802 Published every tnnmtng COMPANY LEADERS Virgil Smith, Chairman 232-5934 Randy Hammer, Publisher 232-5933 Jackie S. Stenseth, Controller 232-5858 I Susan K. Ihne.

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