Orange County home page

News Releases

Orange County, North Carolina

For additional information contact David Hunt, Information Specialist, (919) 245-2126. 

Get email notification when a new release is posted.

March / April 2012

 

Past Orange County News Releases  Solid Waste News


Manager

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release Date: April 27, 2012

Contact: Clarence Grier, Orange County Director of Finance and Administrative Services (919) 245-2453

Clark Named Human Resources Director for Orange County

HILLSBOROUGH, NC – Nicole Munford Clark has been named as the new Human Resources Director for Orange County starting in late June, 2012.

As the HR Director, Clark will be responsible for recruitment and selection of new employees, benefits administration, personnel records, training and development. 

Clark has a solid foundation of experience in both private and public sectors.  She is currently the HR Director for the Newport News Public School System.  Prior to that, she served the City of Chesapeake Virginia in a variety of human resource capacities including Assistant Human Resources Director.

“Ms. Clark’s background is well established and she will bring new insight that will be a strong influence on how we respond more proactively to the changing environment in which we work,” said County Manager Frank Clifton.” 

Clark’s educational background includes a Master’s Degree in Human Resources Management from Wilmington College in Delaware and a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Management from Hampton University.  She holds a certification of Senior Professional in Human Resources, the highest level of certification offered by the Society for Human Resource Management.

“I am honored to have been selected for the position of Human Resources Director for Orange County,” Clark said.  “I look forward to leading a department that delivers quality services to the County,” she added. 

Sharon Goode Laisure has been serving as Interim Human Resources Director and will continue in that position until Clark arrives. 

 

###


BOCC

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release Date: April 26, 2012

Contact: Donna Baker, Clerk to the Board of the Orange County Board of Commissioners (919) 245-2130 or Jeanette Jones (919) 245-2125

Applicants Needed for Orange Unified Transportation Board

ORANGE COUNTY , NC – Many opportunities exist for volunteer citizens who have a desire to become more involved with issues that affect the future of Orange County. 

There are currently openings on the Orange Unified Transportation Board.  The OUT Board will advise the Board of County Commissioners and provide information and comments on major transportation issues; and will also provide the commissioners with recommendations regarding the overall planning and programming of transportation improvements in the County, including:

  • Identify and prioritize the County’s roadway and transit needs along with associated costs and specific sources of funding
  • Assist in recommendations to the Board regarding Federal and State legislation affecting transportation in Orange County; and
  • Explore and make recommendations on innovative techniques and methods to improve the efficiency and capacity of existing and future transportation systems.

 

Applicants are needed to represent the following areas:

  • Cheeks Township
  • Hillsborough Township
  • Cedar Grove Township
  • Little River Township
  • Bingham Township

 

If interested, please apply at http://www.co.orange.nc.us/boards .

 

For additional information look under “Boards and Commissions Listing” select "Orange Unified Transportation Board" or call Donna Baker (919) 245-2130 or Jeanette Jones (919) 245-2125.

With over 20 different boards and commissions, volunteers appointed by the Board of County Commissioners have an opportunity to influence the way of life in Orange County.

 

###


BOCC

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release Date: April 26, 2012

Contact: Donna Baker, Clerk to the Board of the Orange County Board of Commissioners (919) 245-2130 or Jeanette Jones (919) 245-2125

Applicants Needed for Orange County Advisory Board on Aging

ORANGE COUNTY , NC – Many opportunities exist for volunteer citizens who have a desire to become more involved with issues that affect the future of Orange County. 

There are several “at-large” openings available for the Orange County Advisory Board on Aging.  This board suggests policy and makes recommendations to the Board of Commissioners and the Department on Aging while acting as the liaison between the older citizens of the County and the County government.  The Advisory Board on Aging is charged with promoting services and programs that impact older citizens, as well as advising funding directions for services.  This Board assists the Director of the Department on Aging in planning and developing a unified and coordinated “County Aging Plan” with a view towards defining policies, services and facilities.

If interested, please apply at http://www.co.orange.nc.us/boards .

 

For additional information look under “Boards and Commissions Listing” select "Advisory Board on Aging" or call Donna Baker (919) 245-2130 or Jeanette Jones (919) 245-2125.

With over 20 different boards and commissions, volunteers appointed by the Board of County Commissioners have an opportunity to influence the way of life in Orange County.

###


BOCC

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release Date: April 26, 2012

Contact: Donna Baker, Clerk to the Board of the Orange County Board of Commissioners (919) 245-2130 or Jeanette Jones (919) 245-2125

Applicants Needed for Orange County Representative on OWASA Board

ORANGE COUNTY , NC – Many opportunities exist for volunteer citizens who have a desire to become more involved with issues that affect the future of Orange County. 

The Orange County Board of Commissioners is currently recruiting for a volunteer to represent Orange County on the Orange Water and Sewer Authority (OWASA) Board of Directors. 

OWASA is governed by a nine-member Board of Directors. The Chapel Hill Town Council appoints five, the Carrboro Board of Aldermen appoints two and the Orange County Board of Commissioners appoints two Board Members. The OWASA Board adopts the annual budget; sets rates, fees and charges based on cost-of-service principles; approves bond issues to fund capital projects; makes policy decisions; and appoints the Executive Director, General Counsel and Independent Auditor.

Additional information on the OWASA can be found on the following website:

http://www.owasa.org.

If interested, please apply online at http://www.co.orange.nc.us/boards .

 

Select "Orange Water & Sewer Authority Board of Directors" under “Boards and Commissions Listing” for additional information or call Donna Baker (919) 245-2130 or Jeanette Jones (919) 245-2125.

With over 20 different boards and commissions, volunteers appointed by the Board of County Commissioners have an opportunity to influence the way of life in Orange County.

###


Aging

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release Date: April 25, 2012

Contact: Latonya Brown, Orange County Aging Resource and Benefits Specialist, (919) 968-2082

 

Orange County Resource Connection Fair for Seniors

ORANGE COUNTY, NC – Orange County Department on Aging will host the Fourth Annual Resource Connections Fair at University Mall in Chapel Hill on Wednesday, May 9, 2012 from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Seniors and their families are invited to this free event to see how Orange County can help improve the quality of life during one’s golden years.  In addition to wellness displays, senior living experts will be available to answer pressing questions on topics including assisted living and Medicare. Also, there will be free food, free entertainment and free raffles. 

For additional information, contact Latonya Brown, Orange County Aging Resource and Benefits Specialist, 919-968-2082. 

###


Economic Development

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release Date: April 11, 2012

Contact: Dottie Schmitt, Orange County Economic Development, (919) 245-2327

 

Orange County Small Business Loan Program Provides Funding to Chapel Hill Technology Company

ORANGE COUNTY, NC – Orange County’s Small Business Loan Program recently awarded a small business loan to Isis Information Technology (www.isisit.com), a full service computer networking and repair business located in the Chapel Hill 40 business park off Weaver Dairy Road, 88 Vilcom Center, Chapel Hill.   The company offers a wide range of services for both home and business computer systems, including new hardware installation, web design, onsite training and off-site server monitoring.  Isis I.T. plans to use the funds to support several large projects they recently obtained.

 

Orange County’s Director of Economic Development, Steve Brantley states that he is “delighted to see our small business loan program helping a high tech IT services firm grow here in our community.”

Orange County’s Small Business Loan Program is a revolving loan fund designed to foster small business development and the expansion of local companies that may have limited access to conventional financing.  This program is open to small businesses located in Orange County with gross revenues of less than $3 million.  The program is managed through the County’s Economic Development office and administered by a volunteer Board of Directors composed of local business owners, bankers and staff representing several Orange County departments.    For more information on this program contact Dottie Schmitt at Orange County Economic Development, 919-245-2327 (dschmitt@co.orange.nc.us).

###


DEAPR

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release Date: April 11, 2012

Contact: Marabeth Carr, Landscape Architect, (919) 245-2516 or Beth Young, Communications Manager, (919) 245-2518 - Orange County Department of Environment, Agriculture, Parks and Recreation

Orange County Earth Fair 2012

ORANGE COUNTY, NC – In celebration of the 42nd Earth Day, Orange County will host Earth Fair 2012 on Saturday April 21st from 10 am until 1 pm.  The event will be held at River Park/Farmers’ Market Pavilion, 140 E. Margaret Lane in Hillsborough, and will be held in conjunction with the Eno River Farmers Market.

The first Earth Day event was held April 22, 1970 and was intended to promote environmental protection.  Earth Day founder, Senator Gaylord Nelson, saw 20 million Americans participate in Earth Day activities that year.    Earth Day is now a global event with Earth Day 2012 projected to have over one billion participants. 

Orange County’s Earth Fair will include several activities and demonstrations for both children and adults.  Children can participate in recycling games, painting, planting, photography, and bounce houses.  There will be a free recycling drop off for paint, batteries, florescent light bulbs, and used cooking oil.    Live demonstrations include using solar ovens, composting, recycling, and fly fishing will be provided. There will be an alternative fuel vehicle display, information on how to calculate your carbon footprint, and cameras for attendees to take photos for submittal in the ongoing “The Nature of Orange” photography contest.  The North Carolina Herpetological Society, Orange County Beekeepers Association, Orange County 4H, Piedmont Food and Agricultural Processing Center, Eno River Association, Hillsborough Riverwalk and the NC Mountains-to-Sea Trail will all have displays and information.  The Eno River Farmers Market will have garden-ready local plants, as well as their regular variety of local goods.

Join us as we promote a sustainable environment in Orange County.  For directions and additional information www.co.orange.nc.us/deapr/earthfair2012.asp or contact Marabeth Carr 919-245-2416 or Beth Young 919-245-2518.   In the event of rain, Earth Fair will be moved to the Central Recreation Center 300 West Tryon Street, Hillsborough, NC.

###


DEAPR

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release Date: April 10, 2012

Contact: Rich Shaw, Orange County Land Conservation Manager, (919) 245-2514 or Kurt Schlimme, Eno River Association Director of Conservation, (919) 620-9099, ext. 206

Conservation Partnership and Brooks Family Agree to Protect 114-Acre Farm Along Sevenmile Creek in Orange County

ORANGE COUNTY, NC – A partnership of the Eno River Association, Orange County’s Lands Legacy Program, and the NC Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP), has secured the purchase of two conservation easements on a 114-acre farm near Hillsborough.  The easements serve the dual purpose of protecting prime farmland, and protecting the quality of water in streams adjacent to and downstream of the farm.

The farm is owned by Dennis and Linda Brooks, and is located on Ben Johnston Road. Sevenmile Creek and its tributary, Rocky Run, flow through the farm and merge with the Eno River less than 1,500 feet downstream from the property.  The farm has been managed as a cattle ranch since its acquisition by Mr. and Mrs. Brooks in 1978.  The Brooks’ strong connection to the property and their agricultural roots led them to reach out to Eno River Association and Orange County staff in late 2010 to discuss potential land protection options.  The Brooks wanted to pass the farm on to their family knowing that it would remain forever undeveloped and available for agriculture, just as they loved it. 

“We had looked earlier at the CREP program and at the Eno River Association’s and Orange County’s conservation options, but by themselves neither program worked for us,” said Mr. Brooks.  “Combining the two into one project allowed us to accomplish all of our goals.”

In addition to protecting the prime agricultural land on the property, these conservation easements will have significant water quality benefits.  The tract is located within the Upper Eno protected watershed and has approximately 8,000 feet of stream frontage.  As part of the project, Mr. and Mrs. Brooks voluntarily worked with NC CREP to fence cattle out of the streams on the property, thereby creating a protected buffer ranging from 35-200 feet wide.  They also worked with NC CREP to reforest this buffer to provide additional protection for the streams.  The Town of Hillsborough, which draws its drinking water from the Eno River less than a mile downstream of the property, partnered on the project, funding the reforestation of a seven-acre field adjacent to Rocky Run, assisting with the cost of fencing, and supplying a portion of the acquisition funding.  The City of Raleigh, which draws its drinking water from Falls Lake, fed by the Eno River, provided funding as well.  In total, approximately 17 acres were restored to forest as part of the project.  The reforestation of the property and the establishment of stream buffers will have direct benefits to the quality of the water in these streams and the Eno River.

    

This project will have additional significant ecological and resource protection benefits.  The NC Natural Heritage Program identifies this portion of Sevenmile Creek as part of the nationally significant Eno River Aquatic Habitat Natural Heritage Area, due in part to the occurrence of rare and endangered mussels, including the Green floater, Creeper, Eastern lampmussel, and Notched Rainbow.  Its protection will add to the network of nearly 1,100 acres of protected land located within a mile of the property, further preventing fragmentation of natural habitat and helping to maintain healthy plant and animal populations.

Orange County Commissioner Pam Hemminger said, “This conservation easement exemplifies the County's steadfast dedication to preserving its natural resources.  As our communities continue to grow, it becomes even more important to protect our waterways and wildlife corridors.  The County has been able to conserve even more land by partnering with other entities as was the case for this project.  This is a win-win for all citizens, and we thank the Brooks family for their vision and commitment to conserving these resources.”

Milo Pyne, President of the Eno River Association agreed, adding, “Partnerships such as these are invaluable in making great projects happen.  It was a collective effort that I think was not only rewarding for all parties involved but also for the Eno River community in general, and for the protection of the aquatic resources.”

Conservation easements are written agreements that permanently protect land for its natural or cultural resource values, while leaving it in private ownership. The Brooks farm is Orange County’s 26th conservation easement (totaling 1,990 acres), and the second conservation easement held by the Eno River Association (totaling 727 acres).  The project would not have been possible without the support and expertise of the Orange County Soil & Water Conservation District, Town of Hillsborough, City of Raleigh, USDA Farm Service Agency, Natural Resource Conservation Service, NC Forest Service, Conservation Trust for North Carolina, and, most importantly, Mr. and Mrs. Brooks. 

The Eno River Association has been working on land and water quality conservation in the Eno River Basin for more than 45 years.  It was instrumental in the creation of the Eno River State Park in the early 1970s and continues to actively work to expand protected areas throughout the Eno River basin.  The Association’s efforts have resulted in the protection of more than 6,700 acres in the watershed.    

Orange County’s Lands Legacy Program just completed its 12th year.  Since 2000 the County has conserved 2,991 acres of land for a variety of public purposes, including new parkland, nature preserves, watershed buffers, and farmland conservation.  

###


Transit

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release Date: April 9, 2012

Contact: Craig Benedict , Orange County Planning Director, (919) 245-2575

Orange County Transit Plan Public Hearing

ORANGE COUNTY, NC – Two public hearings were scheduled to be held on the proposed Orange County Transit Plan.

The first public hearing was held on Tuesday, April 3, 2012 at the Social Services building in Hillsborough.

The second public hearing will be held on Tuesday, April 17, 2012 at the Southern Human Services Center, 2501 Homestead Rd. in Chapel Hill.  The public hearing is part of a regular Orange County Board of County Commissioners’ meeting which starts at 7:00 p.m. 

Public transit open house sessions will also be held on Monday, April 23, 2012 at Extraordinary Ventures located at 200 S. Elliot Rd., Chapel Hill from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. (please call Triangle Transit, 919-485-7433) for additional information) and on Monday, April 30, 2012 in the Orange County West Campus Office Building located at 131 W. Margaret Lane in Hillsborough from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. ( please call Orange County Planning Department, 919-245-2575 for additional information). 

Funding for the transit plan has been authorized by the NC General Assembly HB-148 in Orange, Durham and Wake Counties in the form of a ½ cent sales tax to be decided by voter referendum (possibly this November) and an increase to the vehicle registration fees.

The purpose of the transit tax is to provide new and expanded services to unserved, underserved and transit dependent populations.  This applies to Orange County for local, inter-county and rural areas, and as important, regional connectivity to Durham and Wake Counties.  Transit service providers would include Triangle Transit, Chapel Hill Transit and Orange Public Transportation.

A presentation will be made regarding the elements of the plan which includes:

  • Legislative Authority
  • Revenue Sources
  • Partnership with Durham County
  • Expenditures
    • Light Rail Transit Cost Sharing Orange County/Durham County
    • Bus Services/Routes
      • Day and Hours
    • Small Capital Projects
      • Park and Ride Lots
      • Bus and Rail Transfer Stations
    • Martin Luther King (MLK) Bus Lanes
  • Timeline of plan development including future decisions regarding a voter referendum decision.

 During the public hearing members of the public can speak to this transportation plan and offer suggestions or pose questions. 

If you have interim questions, please call the Orange County Planning Department at 919-245-2575 or 919-245-2585.

 

###


BOCC

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release Date: April 9, 2012

Contact: Donna Baker, Clerk to the Board of the Orange County Board of Commissioners (919) 245-2130 or Jeanette Jones (919) 245-2125

Applicants Needed for Orange County Parks and Recreation Council

ORANGE COUNTY , NC – Having a diverse representation of volunteer citizens on the various boards/commissions will have a positive impact on the future of Orange County.  Many opportunities exist for any citizen who has a desire to become more involved with issues that affect our community. 

There are currently openings on the Orange County Parks and Recreation Council.  Each member of the Parks and Recreation Council shall be a County resident appointed by the Orange County Board of Commissioners.  This council consults with and advises the Recreation and Parks Department and the Board of County Commissioners on matters affecting recreation policies, programs, personnel, finances, and the acquisition and disposal of lands and properties related to the total community recreation program, and its long-range planning for recreation.

There are currently two vacancies on this Board:

  • Little River Township representation
  • Cedar Grove Township representation

If interested, please apply at http://www.co.orange.nc.us/boards .

 

For additional information look under “Boards and Commissions Listing” select "Orange County Parks and Recreation Council" or call Donna Baker (919) 245-2130 or Jeanette Jones (919) 245-2125.

With over 20 different boards and commissions, volunteers appointed by the Board of County Commissioners have an opportunity to influence the way of life in Orange County.

###


BOCC

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release Date: April 4, 2012

Contact: Donna Baker, Clerk to the Board of the Orange County Board of Commissioners (919) 245-2130 or Jeanette Jones (919) 245-2125

Orange County Seeks Applicants for Alcoholic Beverage Control Board

HILLSBOROUGH, NC – One major way citizens can have a positive impact on the future of Orange County is to volunteer to serve on the various County advisory boards and commissions.

The Orange County ABC Board is an independent political subdivision of the State of North Carolina that purchases, distributes, controls and sells spirituous beverages to eligible citizens and visitors in this County. This is performed consistently with the applicable laws of North Carolina and the rules of the North Carolina Alcoholic Beverage Control Commission. This board also adopts rules for the ABC system and has the authority to hire and dismiss employees. Members are paid a stipend and reimbursed for mileage.

Their united goal is to achieve balance in five important areas: (1) providing the highest level of customer service, (2) maintaining a dedicated workforce, (3) contributing net profits to local Orange County programs, such as educational/rehabilitation, law enforcement and the Orange County General Fund, (4) supporting efforts to ensure the legal sale of alcohol, (5) maintaining sufficient working capital to provide for expansion and improvements.

This Board consists of 6 members all appointed by the Orange County Board of Commissioners.

If interested, please apply at http://www.co.orange.nc.us/boards .

Select "Alcoholic Beverage Control Board" under “Boards and Commissions Listing” for additional information or call Donna Baker (919) 245-2130 or Jeanette Jones (919) 245-2125.

With over 20 different boards and commissions, volunteers appointed by the Board of County Commissioners have an opportunity to influence the way of life in Orange County.

###


Homelessness

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release Date: April 4, 2012

Contact: Jamie Rohe, Orange County Homeless Program Coordinator, (919) 245-2496

Orange County Partnership to End Homelessness Releases 2011 Annual Report

ORANGE COUNTY, NC – The Partnership to End Homelessness is a coalition of service providers, local governments, faith-based and other community groups, local businesses, UNC-CH and volunteers working together to end homelessness in Orange County.  The group made significant strides last year toward increasing access to housing, employment and essential services to people experiencing homelessness in Orange County. 

Visit the website of the Orange County Partnership to End Homelessness to see the full report; highlights of include:

  • Eight (8) disabled, homeless individuals were housed and received essential services through CASA and the OPC Area Program;
  • Housing for New Hope street outreach workers housed 44 homeless people – including 10 families with children – in Orange County;
  • Implemented the Job Partners job-readiness program for people experiencing or at risk of homelessness and recruited nine (9) local employers to hire Job Partners graduates;
  • Developed the Orange County Support Circle Program (Support Circles are groups of volunteers who partner with people transitioning out of homelessness into permanent housing by providing them with relational and material support) and began recruiting people to form the first Support Circles;
  • Implemented Transition Court which allows homeless people charged with minor crimes to follow mental health and/or substance abuse treatment plans instead of going to jail;
  • Received a Continuum of Care grant of nearly $500,000 from the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) for permanent supportive housing for people with disabilities including the homeless; and
  • Held the 5th annual Project Connect that provided 230 people experiencing or at risk of homelessness with over 2,344 contacts with service providers.  Over 50 service providers and several hundred volunteers participated, and dozens of local businesses contributed to the event.

For more information about the work of the Partnership or to find out how you can become involved, email jrohe@co.orange.nc.us or call 919-245-2496.

 

###


Communications

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release Date: April 3, 2012

Contact: David Hunt, Orange County Deputy Clerk / Information Specialist, (919) 245-2126

Orange County Receives Excellence in Communications Awards

CHAPEL HILL, NC – Orange County was among 19 North Carolina governments to earn recognition in the fourth North Carolina City & County Communicators’ (NC3C) Excellence in Communications Awards presented Thursday, March 29 at the Carolina Inn as part NC3C’s annual Spring Conference.

Categories included TV & Videos, Communication Technology, Special Events, Printed Publications, Most Creative Project for the Least Amount of Funds, Service Delivery, Marketing Tools, and Communications Plan.

Orange County received two awards: First Place in the category of “Marketing Tools using Direct Mail or Print Advertising” and Second Place in the category of “Most Creative Activity with Least Dollars Spent”.

Both awards were for the “52 Reasons to Love Orange County” year-long project led by the Chapel Hill/Orange County Visitors Bureau.  In addition to a full page weekly newspaper ad donated by The Herald Sun, posters have been placed in local offices and the displays have also been used in promoting economic development.  See a sampling of the posters/displays at http://www.visitchapelhill.org/orange_county_ads

“We have a great number of talented and innovative government communication professionals in North Carolina and it is an honor to work side by side with them as we are dedicated to keeping citizens informed and engaged in our respective communities,” said Mandy Pitts, NC3C President and Communications Director and Brand Manager for the City of Hickory.  “This year’s award ceremony showcased the best of the best in communications in North Carolina from special events to videos to projects that were creative but did not cost much money or anything at all.”

Judges for the NC3C Excellence in Communications Awards were government communication professionals from California, Florida, Texas, Virginia, Colorado and Georgia.  Each judge had previously won first or second-place in the national Savvy Awards, presented annually by the City-County Communications and Marketing Association.

The purpose of North Carolina City & County Communicators is to encourage professional development and networking among local governmental communications professionals. The organization was formed in March, 2007 by 27 professional communicators from around the state. Since then, the organization has grown to more than 80 members. For more information about NC3C, visit the website, www.nc3c.com.

 

###


Transit

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release Date: March 27, 2012

Contact: Craig Benedict , Orange County Planning Director, (919) 245-2575

Orange County Transit Plan Public Hearing

ORANGE COUNTY, NC – Two public hearings will be held on the proposed Orange County Transit Plan.

The first public hearing will be held on Tuesday, April 3, 2012 at the Social Services building in Hillsborough Commons, 113 Mayo Street in Hillsborough.

The second public hearing will be held on Tuesday, April 17, 2012 at the Southern Human Services Center, 2501 Homestead Rd. in Chapel Hill.

Both public hearings are part of a regular Orange County Board of County Commissioners meeting which starts at 7:00 p.m.   

Funding for the transit plan has been authorized by the NC General Assembly HB-148 in Orange, Durham and Wake Counties in the form of a ½ cent sales tax to be decided by voter referendum (possibly this November) and an increase to the vehicle registration fees.

The purpose of the transit tax is to provide new and expanded services to unserved, underserved and transit dependent populations.  This applies to Orange County for local, inter-county and rural areas, and as important, regional connectivity to Durham and Wake Counties.  Transit service providers would include Triangle Transit, Chapel Hill Transit and Orange Public Transportation.

A presentation will be made regarding the elements of the plan which includes:

  • Legislative Authority
  • Revenue Sources
  • Partnership with Durham County
  • Expenditures
    • Light Rail Transit Cost Sharing Orange County/Durham County
    • Bus Services/Routes
      • Day and Hours
    • Small Capital Projects
      • Park and Ride Lots
      • Bus and Rail Transfer Stations
    • Martin Luther King (MLK) Bus Lanes
  • Timeline of plan development including future decisions regarding a voter referendum decision.

 

During the public hearing members of the public can speak to this transportation plan and offer suggestions or pose questions. 

If you have interim questions, please call the Orange County Planning Department at 919-245-2575 or 919-245-2585.

 

###


 

BOCC

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release Date: March 22, 2012

Contact: Donna Baker, Clerk to the Board - Orange County Board of Commissioners, (919) 245-2130 or Jeanette Jones (919) 245-2125

 

Orange County Seeking Applicants for the Chapel Hill Board of Adjustment

ORANGE COUNTY, NC – One major way citizens can have a positive impact on the future of Orange County is to volunteer to serve on the various advisory boards and commissions.   

The Board of County Commissioners seeks to fill two County vacancies and one alternate on the CHAPEL HILL BOARD OF ADJUSTMENT.  Applicants must reside in the Extraterritorial Jurisdiction (ETJ) or the Joint Planning Area of Chapel Hill.   The Board of Adjustment, through the process of appeal and review may determine that variances to the zoning regulations of the Town be permitted.  It may also reverse any order, requirement, decision, or determination of the administrative official charged with enforcement of the Land Use Management Ordinance.  It may serve as an appeals board for other matters assigned to it under the Town Code of Ordinances.  The Board of Adjustment has been granted the power to act independently of the Town Council in most instances but on occasion serves in an advisory capacity to the Council.

If interested, you may apply online at:  http://www.co.orange.nc.us/boards/apply.asp.

Volunteers appointed by the Board of County Commissioners have an opportunity to influence the way of life in Orange County.

 

###


BOCC

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release Date: March 22, 2012

Contact: Donna Baker, Clerk to the Board - Orange County Board of Commissioners, (919) 245-2130 or Jeanette Jones (919) 245-2125

 

Orange County Seeking Applicants for the Chapel Hill Planning Board

ORANGE COUNTY, NC – One major way citizens can have a positive impact on the future of Orange County is to volunteer to serve on the various advisory boards and commissions.   

The Board of County Commissioners needs to appoint a citizen to fill an Orange County vacancy on the CHAPEL HILL PLANNING BOARD.  The applicants must reside in the Extraterritorial Jurisdiction (ETJ) of Chapel Hill.  The Chapel Hill Planning Board develops a comprehensive plan for the orderly growth and development of Chapel Hill.  It reviews all plans for buildings, projects and facilities to be located within the Town’s jurisdiction.  It also formulates and recommends the adoption and amendment of ordinances.

If interested, you may apply online at:  http://www.co.orange.nc.us/boards/apply.asp.

Volunteers appointed by the Board of County Commissioners have an opportunity to influence the way of life in Orange County.

 

###


DEAPR

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release Date: March 22, 2012

Contact: Keitha Barrett , Orange County Department of Environment, Agriculture, Parks & Recreation, (919) 245-2665

 

Annual Children's Egg Hunt Celebration

HILLSBOROUGH, NC – Wanted…Skilled egg hunters between the ages of 2 and 10! 

Orange County Department of Environment, Agriculture, Parks and Recreation, The Town of Chapel Hill and the Town of Carrboro present the Annual Children’s Egg Hunt Celebration on Saturday, March 31, 2012, at River Park in Downtown Hillsborough, NC.   The event begins at 9:30 a.m. featuring a children’s band, art area, bounce houses, concessions, games and of course THE HUNT! 

Start time for the 2 to 4 year old children is promptly at 10:30 a.m., followed by 5 to7 year old youth at 10:45 a.m. and 8 to10 year old youth at 11:00 a.m.  Be sure to return to the arts and games areas after each hunt as there is still plenty to do until 12:00 p.m.

Bring your baskets because over 10,000 eggs and pieces of wrapped candy will be hidden with great prizes for numbered and golden eggs.  Bring your cameras too, because the Easter Bunny is going to drop by for pictures! 

The egg hunts, games, art area, and musical entertainment are free to the public. Concessions and the bounce houses have a nominal fee.  This event promises fun for the whole family.  For more information call Orange County Department of Environment, Agriculture, Parks and Recreation at 919-245-2660.  In the event of inclement weather call 919-245-2669.  The rain date is Sunday, April 1, 2012 at 2:00 to 4:00 p.m.

 

###


Emergency Services

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release Date: March 20, 2012

Contact: Frank Montes de Oca, Orange County Emergency Services Director, (919) 245-6100

 

Orange County Alert - New Dialing Rules

ORANGE COUNTY, NC – Orange County Emergency Services would like to remind everyone in our area to prepare for upcoming phone changes. 

Next week will be the last week 7 digit dialing will work in and around Orange County in the 919 area code.  As of March 31, 2012, you must dial 10 digits to complete all local calls. If you don’t dial all 10 digits, your call will not be connected.

Some automatically dialed calls may require reprogramming for 10 digit dialing. These auto-call systems may include life safety systems, fax machines, Internet dial-up numbers, alarm and security systems, speed dialers, call forwarding settings, voicemail services, cell phone contacts, and similar functions.

It will not be necessary to dial a “1” or a “0” when dialing your local and expanded local calls.

Emergency help can still be contacted by dialing 9-1-1. 

Also, you may want to check on local relatives who may try and call you using 7 digit preset “contacts” on their cell phones.

For additional information, see the link below. 

http://www.co.orange.nc.us/occlerks/984info.pdf 

 

###


GIS

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release Date: March 15, 2012

Contact: Steve Averett, Information Technologies - GIS, (919) 245-2501

 

Orange County Introduces New Property Information Tool - ARIES

ORANGE COUNTY, NC – Orange County maintains many public records associated with property.  In the past, there have been challenges for a property owner trying to view varying land records online.  The search just got easier!

Orange County would like to introduce its latest GIS application, ARIES.  ARIES is an acronym for Address Related Information – Electronic Search. 

ARIES is designed to consolidate a wealth of information through a single interface.  Property address information ranges from tax and land records data, voting precincts, school districts, fire districts, soil data, zoning and environmental health to directions for the nearest libraries, nearest recycling centers, and more. 

The ARIES website is designed with a simple and easy-to-use Internet interface that requires only an address to begin searching.  Area realtors have already expressed excitement about the ease of use for individuals shopping for a new home in Orange County. 

Orange County is one of only three North Carolina counties to provide a tool this dynamic to its residents and future residents.  The public can test drive ARIES at http://aries.co.orange.nc.us

Development is also underway for a mobile app for smart phones such as the Android and eventually Apple.  For additional information about ARIES, contact Steve Averett, 919-245-2501. 

###


Manager

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release Date: March 15, 2012

Contact: Gwen Harvey, Assistant County Manager - Orange County, (919) 245-2307

 

Orange County Quarter Cent Sales Tax Starts April 1

ORANGE COUNTY, NC – The Quarter Cent Sales Tax passed by the voters of Orange County last year goes into effect on April 1, 2012. 

Details and scope of the implementation are provided by the North Carolina Department of Revenue in the document linked below. 

http://www.co.orange.nc.us/manager/SalesTax2012.pdf

###


Elections

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release Date: March 12, 2012

Contact: Tracy Reams, Elections Director, (919) 245-2350

 

Orange County Board of Elections to Open Five One-Stop Early Voting Sites

ORANGE COUNTY, NC – Orange County residents who wish to vote early in the May 8, 2012 Election may choose one of five sites.  At a meeting held on Tuesday, February 14th, the Orange County Board of Elections approved five early voting sites: the Ram’s Head Dining Hall, the Seymour Senior Center, Carrboro Town Hall, Mt. Zion AME Church, and the Board of Elections Office in Hillsborough. 

Schedule:

Board of Elections Office, 208 South Cameron Street, Hillsborough, NC

Open Thursday, April 19 to Saturday, May 5:

Weekdays: 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Saturdays (April 28 and May 5 only): 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Carrboro Town Hall, 301 West Main Street, Carrboro, NC

Open Monday, April 23 to Saturday, May 5:

Weekdays: 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Saturdays (April 28 and May 5 only): 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

 

Seymour Senior Center, 2551 Homestead Road, Chapel Hill

Open Monday, April 23 to Saturday, May 5:

Weekdays: Noon to 7:00 p.m.

Saturdays (April 28 and May 5 only): 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Rams Head Dining Hall, 320 Ridge Road, Chapel Hill, NC

AND

Mount Zion AME Church, 5124 NC Highway 86 North, Hillsborough, NC

Both open Monday, April 23 to Saturday, May 5:

Weekdays: 11:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

Saturdays (April 28 and May 5 only): 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

On Election Day, May 8th, all polling sites will be open from 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.

If a Second Primary is necessary only the Board of Elections office will be open for early voting.

###


Human Relations

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release Date: March 12, 2012

Contact: James Spivey, Department of Housing Human Rights and Community Development, (919) 245-2488

 

Pauli Murray Human Relations Award Recipients

ORANGE COUNTY, NC – On Sunday, February 26, 2012, the Orange County Board of Commissioners and the Orange County Human Relations Commission held the annual Pauli Murray Awards Ceremony in The Ballroom at the Central Orange Senior Center.  The Pauli Murray Award commemorates the life of the late Reverend Dr. Pauli Murray (1910-1985), a distinguished and remarkable person who confronted discrimination, racism, and sexism in her own life.

Joseph DeVito was the 2011 Pauli Murray Human Relations Youth Award recipient.  Mr. DeVito resides in Chapel Hill and is currently a freshman at UNC-CH.  He has participated in week long mission trips to Appalachia to work with those who need a helping hand and he understands and demonstrates respect for the innate dignity of every human being.

Turner Prickett, Chief Administrator of Chapel Hill Rehabilitation and Healthcare, accepted the 2011 Pauli Murray Human Relations Business Award.  Chapel Hill Rehabilitation and Healthcare  provides skilled nursing and rehabilitation services to 100 residents.  Under Mr. Prickett’s guidance and staff’s commitment to providing the best care possible, this facility transformed from a facility with numerous and serious shortcomings in care, to one where care of residents is center-stage and first class.  The clients and staff of the facility are racially and socio-economically diverse.

Maggie West was the 2011 Pauli Murray Human Relations Award recipient.  Ms. West is the founder and program coordinator for the Community Empowerment Fund.  Ms. West works locally to help people transition out of poverty and homelessness and into long-term independent housing, financial stability and stable jobs.  She focuses on understanding and eradicating barriers for people facing poverty and homelessness from the perspective of the homeless people themselves.

Students in the middle schools and high schools within Orange County submitted essays regarding the subject of social justice and equality.  There were separate topics for middle school and high school students.  The topic for middle school students was: “If you could have one wish granted that would change our local community for the better, what would that wish be and why?”  The topic for high school students was:  “Describe a significant moment or experience you have had that illustrates your understanding of what ‘social justice’ means.” 

The middle school winners were:  1st Place:  Ms.Wenbo Wang of McDougle; 2nd Place: Ms. Elizabeth Siegling of Smith; and 3rd Place:  Ms. Colette Cambey of C.W. Stanford.

The high school winners were:  1st Place:  Mr. Elijah Moore of Chapel Hill High; 2nd Place: Ms. Ashley Han of Chapel Hill High; and 3rd Place:  Ms. Natalee Atwater of Chapel Hill High.

###


Manager

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release Date: March 7, 2012

Contact: John Roberts, Orange County Attorney, (919) 245-2318

 

Special Meeting Notice

 

ORANGE COUNTY

PUBLIC FACILITIES COMPANY

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

SPECIAL MEETING NOTICE

FOR

March 21, 2012

  

 

The Orange County Public Facilities Company Board of Directors will hold a special meeting on Wednesday, March 21, 2012 at 3:00 p.m. at the Link Government Services Center, 200 South Cameron Street, Hillsborough N.C., to consider approving documents related to the issuance of 2012 bonds.

###


Social Services

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release Date: March 7, 2012

Contact: Elizabeth Phillips, Department of Social Services, (919) 245-2800

 

Applications for Heating Assistance Available at Orange County Department of Social Services

ORANGE COUNTY, NC – The Orange County Department of Social Services is currently taking applications for energy programs that help low-income families pay for heating costs.

These energy programs provide payments directly to the heating vendor that will be credited to the resident’s bill.

Eligibility for the program is based on income and other household characteristics.  To apply, residents should bring the following information:

  • Verification of all income received during February 2012 (earned and unearned)
  • Social Security numbers for each person in the home
  • Bill for the primary heating source in the home 

 

The heating bill must be in the name of a household member.  Eligibility and the amount of assistance will be determined by a caseworker.  Applications are being taken at the following Department of Social Services locations:

Southern Human Services Center

2501 Homestead Road

Chapel Hill, NC

Hillsborough Commons

113 Mayo Street

Hillsborough, NC

For questions about the programs, please contact the agency at (919) 245-2800.  Applications for all Social Services programs are available at both Orange County Department of Social Services locations.

###