Board of County Commissioners
200 South Cameron Street
P.O. Box 8181
Hillsborough, North Carolina 27278
(919) 245-2130
Fax: (919) 644-0246

Contact: Buck Tredway
Information Specialist
(919) 245-2126
Fax: (919) 644-0246

News Release

May/June 2000

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March/April 2000 | January/February 2000 | December 1999

Monthly Household Hazardous Waste
Collection is Saturday, July 1


Date: June 20, 2000

For more information: Orange Community Recycling, (919) 968-2788

Orange Community Recycling will hold its monthly hazardous household waste collection on Saturday July 1, from 9am to 3pm at the Orange County Landfill, Eubanks Road in Chapel Hill.

Residents may safely dispose of paints, pesticides, household batteries, chemicals, and other hazardous materials from homes or apartments.

Free latex paint also will available at Eubanks Road collection site.

Orange Community Recycling cannot accept business or commercial wastes, radioactive, explosive or infectious materials.

Residents are asked not to bring cans containing very small amounts of paint. Small amounts of usable paint should be combined with other paint of the same type in one can. Please do not mix oil based and water based paints.

Small amounts of non-usable paint should be dried out with cat litter and the can deposited in the regular trash with the lid off. Empty paint cans also may be disposed of with the lid off in household trash.

Motor oil and auto batteries may be dropped off at any of the six solid waste convenience centers.

Future household hazardous waste collection events are scheduled for August 5, September 2, October 7, and November 4, at the Orange County Landfill.

For further information about waste reduction and alternatives to use of hazardous wastes, call 968-2788.

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Domestic Travel Spending Tops $100 Million in Orange County

June 12, 2000

Contact: Patty Griffin, Communications Manager, Chapel Hill/Orange County Visitors Bureau, (919) 968-2060

The Chapel Hill/Orange County Visitors Bureau has announced that spending by domestic U.S. travelers surpassed $100 million in Orange County during 1999. The $100.37 million dollar figure is a 5.76 percent increase over 1998 and ranks Orange County 21st out of North Carolina’s 100 counties in travel expenditures. Orange County ranked 22nd in 1998.

The North Carolina Department of Commerce Division of Tourism, Film and Sports Development recently released its 1999 county-by-county tourism economic impact results. The annual study, prepared by the Travel Industry Association of America (TIA), measures tourism expenditures, payroll, employment, and state and local tax receipts for the state’s counties.

"Travel spending increases local tax revenues which results in more funds for local services," said Joe Blake, Executive Director of the Chapel Hill/Orange County Visitors Bureau. In 1999, travel and tourism generated $2.26 million in tax receipts for Orange County, up from $2.09 million in 1998.

"Orange County has so much to offer travelers -- historic sites, museums, sporting events, performing arts theaters, recreational activities, quality accommodations, unique shopping, great dining and entertainment," adds Blake. "Ours continues to be an increasingly popular visitor destination."

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Orange County Health Department Confirms
Cause of Seawell Illnesses

For Immediate Release

June 8, 2000

Contact: Rosemary Summers (919) 245-2411

The Orange County Health Department has confirmed the cause of the outbreak of gastrointestinal illness that occurred at Seawell Elementary School in Chapel Hill during the week of May 24, 2000.

Norwalk-like virus has been confirmed by laboratory testing as the agent causing the outbreak. On May 24th, approximately 100 students, faculty and staff from Seawell Elementary School experienced gastrointestinal illness that necessitated canceling end-of-grade testing for the day. Norwalk-like viruses are often associated with outbreaks of mild to moderate vomiting, abdominal pain and/or diarrhea. Muscle aches, headaches and fever may also occur. Symptoms usually abate within 24-48 hours and resolve without medical intervention.

Transmission of these viruses occurs from person-to-person, primarily thorough fecal-oral transmission. Recent research by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has shown that airborne transmission of the disease is likely in close quarters when persons are actively vomiting. Active vomiting of children in the school setting contributed to the rapid spread of the illness.

The original or index case in the Seawell outbreak has not been identified, since there were family members ill in several families prior to the school outbreak. Norwalk-like viruses usually begin from a foodborne source. It is suspected that 90% of all viral foodborne illness can be attributed to Norwalk-like viruses.

For more information, contact Rosemary Summers, Orange County Health Director, at (919) 245-2411.

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County, School System to Dedicate
Efland-Cheeks Park June 12


Date: June 7, 2000

For more information: Bob Jones, Recreation and Parks Director, (919) 245-2660

The Orange County Board of Commissioners will join members of the Orange County School Board to officially dedicate the Efland-Cheeks Community School Park on Monday June 12.

The dedication ceremony begins at 6 p.m. at the park’s picnic shelter, 117 Richmond Rd., in Efland. Staci Wilson, former UNC and U.S. Olympic soccer star, will make the official "kick-off" to dedicate the facility.

A town meeting will follow the dedication ceremony to discuss rules governing the use of the park facility, the formation of a community watch group to assist with park security, and other issues of interest to the community.

Hot dogs and drinks will be provided after the town meeting, and prizes will be given away during the evening.

Commissioners endorsed the concept of the Efland-Cheeks Community School Park in June 1996. The Board earmarked $500,000 in park bond funds approved by Orange County voters in 1997 for the new facility. Board members approved the final park plan in November 1998.

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Farm Preservation and Agricultural Economic
Development Program is Monday, June 5


Date: June 1, 2000

For more information: Fletcher Barber, (919) 245-2051 or Barry Jacobs, (919) 732-4941

As part of its ongoing efforts to promote opportunities for local agriculture, Orange County joins the Triangle J Council of Governments in hosting a presentation on agricultural economic development and small family farm preservation, on Monday,
June 5.

The program will be held in the superior courtroom of the new Orange County Courthouse, 106 E. Margaret Lane, Hillsborough, beginning at 7:30 p.m.

The featured speaker is Philip Gottwals, a nationally renowned agricultural economic development expert from Howard County, Maryland. Gottwals will share case studies from Maryland, including a "Tobacco Conversion Program" for farmers in the southern part of his state.

Also present to discuss the findings and recommendations of the N.C. Commission on Small Family Farm Preservation will be representatives of the North Carolina Department of Agriculture, N.C. Farm Bureau and N.C. Grange.

The Democratic candidate for Commissioner of Agriculture, Meg Scott Phipps, and republican candidate, Steve Troxler, are expected to be on hand to discuss their views farm issues.

For more information, or to pre-register, contact Dr. Fletcher barber at the Cooperative Extension Service, Orange County Center (919) 245-2050.

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Budget Hearings to be Broadcast on
Cable Access Television


Date: May 30, 2000

For more information: Buck Tredway, (919) 245-2126

Time Warner cable customers who are unable to attend public hearings scheduled for today and Tuesday, June 1, on the County’s proposed budget for fiscal year 2000-2001, will be able to view the hearings on cable access television.

Budget hearings will be videotaped by The Peoples Channel public access television. The hearings will be broadcast on a tape delay basis on cable channel 8 in Chapel Hill and on cable channel 18 on the Carrboro/Hillsborough cable system.

Tonight’s budget hearing is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. at the Southern Human Services Center, 2501 Homestead Rd., Chapel Hill. It will be rebroadcast tomorrow, May 31, at 8 p.m. and Thursday, June 1, at 8 a.m. and again at 2 p.m.

The next budget hearing is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Thursday, June 1, at the F. Gordon Battle Courtroom, 106 E. Margaret Lane, Hillsborough. It will air at 8 p.m. Friday, June 2 and at 8 a.m. and 2 p.m. on Saturday, June 3.

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Budget Press Briefing Scheduled for Wednesday, May 24

May 22, 2000


Contact: Donna Dean, (919) 245-2150

Orange County Manager, John Link, has scheduled a press briefing for Wednesday, May 24th to discuss the recommended budget for FY 2000 – 2001. This press briefing will convene at 3:00pm in the Public Meeting Room of the Government Services Center, located at 200 S. Cameron Street in Hillsborough.

After an overview of the most significant components of the recommended budget, the Manager and Budget staff will respond to questions from members of the media.

Media copies of the budget will be available for review one hour prior to the press briefing, at 2:00pm, in the same location.

For additional information, please contact John Link, Rod Visser, or Donna Dean at 245-2300.

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Budget Public Hearings Scheduled for
May 30 and June 1


Date: May 22, 2000

For more information: Donna Dean, (919) 245-2151

The Board of County Commissioners will hold public hearings on the County Manager’s 2000-01 recommended budget Tuesday, May 30 and Thursday, June 1.

The May 30 public hearing will be held at the Southern Human Services Center, 2501 Homestead Road in Chapel Hill. The June 1 public hearing will be held in the F. Gordon Battle Courtroom, 106 E. Margaret Lane in Hillsborough. Both hearings begin at 7:30 p.m.

Citizens wishing to be heard on the budget are invited to provide their written or oral comments at one of the public hearings. Citizens who cannot attend one of these public hearings may submit written comments by mail to the Orange County Board of County Commissioners, P.O. Box 8181, Hillsborough, NC 27278.

Copies of the proposed budget are available for public inspection during normal operating hours in the County’s Budget Office, 208 South Cameron Street, Hillsborough, and in the office of the Clerk to the Board, 200 South Cameron Street, Hillsborough.

Copies of the proposed budget are also available in the Orange County Library in Hillsborough, McDougle School Library in Carrboro, and the Chapel Hill Public Library.

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Orange County Dog Bite Prevention Week is May 21-27


Date: May 19, 2000

For more information: John Sauls (919) 245-2081

Orange County is joining The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) in recognizing National Dog Bite Prevention Week, May 21-27, 2000. The Orange County Board of Commissioners proclaimed May 21-27, 2000, as "Orange County Dog Bite Prevention Week". Letter carriers with dogs attached to their ankles have been the subjects of jokes and cartoons for years. But there is nothing funny about dog bite injuries to the more than 4.7 million victims who are bitten each year, most of whom are children.

The Animal Protection Society, Carrboro Animal Control, Chapel Hill Animal Control, Orange County Animal Control (The Orange County Animal Control and Protection Services Coalition), and the HSUS agree that , in most cases, dog bites are not caused by "bad dogs" but by irresponsible dog owners. Dogs who have not been properly socialized to other persons, who are not supervised or safely confined, who are not sterilized, or who receive little attention and handling are those who most often bite humans.

Although particular breeds of dogs are often accused of being most likely to bite, there are other predictors of canine biting behavior that suggest high risks of biting; for example, dogs who have not been spayed or neutered are three times more likely to bite. For this reason, The Orange County Animal Control and Protection Services Coalition suggest that the first step you can take to prevent your dog from biting is to have him/her spayed or neutered. Proper socialization, supervision, humane training, and safe confinement are also important components of responsible dog ownership and bite prevention.

Most dog bite incidents can be prevented through appropriate public education and responsible dog ownership. Orange County Dog Bite Prevention Week is an opportunity for animal care and control agencies, humane societies, post offices, public service agencies, veterinarians, dog trainers, educators, physicians, and many others to work together to address this significant - and largely preventable - public health problem.

Thursday, May 25, 12 noon to 3 pm:

  • Carrboro Animal Control will host an educational table at Weaver Street Market, Carrboro.
  • Chapel Hill animal Control and the Animal Protection Society of Orange County will host an educational table at the University Mall
  • Orange County Animal Control will host an education table at Walmart, Hillsborough
  • FACT: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, Georgia estimates that nearly 2% of the US population is bitten by a dog each year. This is ore than 4.7 million people per year.
  • FACT: Most bite victims are children.
  • FACT: Spaying or neutering your dog lowers the risk. Spayed and neutered dogs are three times less likely to bite.
  • FACT: It is the law that all dog bites must be reported.
  • FACT: Children can be taught how to avoid dog bites. Animal Control and the Animal Protection Society offer in-school programs.
  • FACT: If dogs were restrained on their owner's property, there would be many fewer bites.
  • FACT: From 10 to 20 people die each year as a result of dog bites in the United States. From January 1997 through December 1998, 27 people died after being bitten by a dog. Nineteen of these victims were children under 12 years of age. Of the 8 adult victims, most were elderly.
  • FACT: Although there are breeds of dogs that may have a higher risk of bites, all dogs can bite, and dog ownership of all breeds is the key to dog bite prevention.

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Time to Watch for Ticks

May 19, 2000


As warm weather arrives, so does tick season. State public health officials want to remind you to be careful when spending time outside since ticks carry several diseases.

North Carolina usually has more cases of Rocky Mountain spotted fever each summer than any other state. Two other diseases ticks cause are ehrlichiosis and Lyme disease. All these diseases first cause flu-like symptoms and are easily treated with antibiotics if caught early. If left untreated, these diseases can become serious and even fatal in some cases.

To prevent tick bites, wear long pants and long sleeves when in wooded areas. Tuck pants legs into socks and shirts into pants. Wear light-colored clothes so you can see ticks more easily, and use repellants to keep ticks from biting. Once you are back inside, check yourself and any children for ticks immediately, paying particular attention to the scalp. It is unlikely disease will get into your blood in the first few hours after a tick bites, so it is important to remove ticks as soon as possible.

If you find a tick, grab it with tweezers or a tissue close to the skin and pull straight out slowly until the tick lets go. If mouthparts stay in the skin, remove them with a sterile needle. (Nail polish, petroleum jelly or hot matches will not make a tick let go of skin). Save the tick in a jar or plastic bag with alcohol in case you develop any symptoms of disease. Wash your hands and the bite area with soap and water, then clean the bite with disinfectant. Write down the date you were bitten and watch for flu-like symptoms for three weeks.

For more information, call John Sauls, Director, Orange County Animal Control Division, at (919) 245-2081.


Orange County and Durham County Awarded
State Grant For Little River Regional Park Purchase



Contact: David Stancil 245-2590, Rich Shaw 245-2591

Orange and Durham Counties have received notice of a grant in the amount of $250,000 from the N.C. Parks and Recreation Trust Fund toward the purchase of a 391-acre parcel along the two counties’ border. The counties submitted the grant application jointly to assist in the purchase of land that would become the Little River Regional Park and Natural Area. The two counties have entered into a unique partnership in this effort with two non-profit organizations – the Triangle Land Conservancy and the Eno River Association. The land contains significant frontage along the Little River in Durham County, where identified natural areas and wildlife habitat exist containing species such as the rare yellow lampmussel. In addition to natural areas along the river, the Little River Park and Natural Area would also contain trails for hiking and other potential recreational uses.

In March, the Clean Water Management Trust Fund awarded a grant of up to $377,000 to the partners toward this project. These two grants, combined with fund-raising commitments from the Triangle Land Conservancy and Eno River Association, will lower the County’s total costs for acquisition to around $89,000 (or $656/acre).

The purchase by Orange County of 135.6 acres of the tract will be considered by the Orange County Commissioners on May 16. The Little River Regional Park and Natural Area is part of the County’s new Lands Legacy program, adopted by the Board of Commissioners on April 4. This program, and its companion action plan (adopted May 3), provides a "green print" for resource land acquisitions for the upcoming 14 months in Orange County. A significant focus is on acquisitions for parklands, with a deficit of 645 acres of parkland having been projected by a parks and recreation report last year.

The Lands Legacy program, the first of its kind by a local government in North Carolina, is comprehensive in nature, and features an extensive GIS database to track and identify open space, along with criteria for evaluation of acquisitions in five key areas: natural areas and wildlife habitat, parklands, farmland preservation, cultural resource preservation, and riparian buffers in watersheds.

"The Little River Park project is a testament to the vision of the Orange County Board of Commissioners and to the dedication, initiative, and resourcefulness of County staff," said County Manager John Link.

"I'm pleased and gratified with the support demonstrated by the state. Within the span of a few months we've increased by about two-thirds the lands protected by Orange County, and done so with minimal cost to local taxpayers," said Commissioner Barry Jacobs.

"The Little River project reflects a positive response to concerns raised by residents of the area, and represents an unusual and hopefully precedent-setting case of cooperation between governments and private entities to preserve the environment and to create recreational opportunities now and for generations to come."

"This award is unique, not only because it is the result of a joint partnership, but also because it is a component of Orange County's pioneering Lands Legacy Program," said Commissioner Alice Gordon.

"This is a wonderful legacy for future generations," said Commissioner Margaret Brown. "This is just the beginning of Orange County's plan to become a leader in the state in siting parks and open spaces throughout our county, particularly in Cedar Grove, Bingham Township and Chapel Hill-Carrboro."

The Parks and Recreation Trust Fund was created in 1994 by the N.C. General Assembly for the purposes of improving the quality of life in North Carolina by preserving natural resources and public parks and recreation. A total of $5.8 million in 32 grants was awarded this week by the Parks and Recreation Authority.

More information on the Orange County Lands Legacy program may be found on the Orange County web site at Information on the Parks and Recreation Trust Fund may be found at .

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