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
Communications Specialist
(919) 245-2126
Fax: (919) 644-0246

News Releases

May/June 2002

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March/April 2002
January/February 2002 | November/December 2001
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Board of Commissioners to hold Public Hearing on New Half-cent Sales Tax


Date: June 18, 2002

For more information: Greg Wilder, (919) 245-2314;

The Orange County Board of Commissioners has scheduled a public hearing to receive comments on the possible implementation of an additional half-cent local option sales and use tax.

The Commissioners have taken no position as to whether or not they will levy the additional taxing authority. That decision will be made only after hearing the views of Orange County citizens on this matter.

The public hearing will be held during the Board’s regularly scheduled budget work session Thursday, June 20, 7:30 p.m. at the Southern Human Services Center, 2501 Homestead Rd., in Chapel Hill.

An additional half-cent sales tax would help offset an anticipated loss of local reimbursement revenue being withheld by the State of North Carolina in an effort to balance its budget.

Local option sales taxes are authorized under Section 34.14(a) of Session Law 2001-424, Article 44, Chapter 105 of the North Carolina General Statutes. Orange County levied half-cent sales taxes in 1983 and again in 1986. If adopted, the new half-cent sales tax would take effect no earlier than July 1, 2003.

The State of North Carolina is withholding approximately $3.1 million in local intangibles, inventory and Homestead exemption reimbursements, and beer and wine taxes from Orange County. Counties and municipalities across the state have seen a negative impact on their budgets due to the Governor’s decision to withhold revenues normally earmarked for local governments.

North Carolina, which is experiencing the third largest budget deficit of any state in the nation, does not expect its budget picture to improve during the 2002-2003 fiscal year.

A new half-cent sales tax would generate an estimated $3.7 million for Orange County during the 2003-2004 fiscal year.

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County Initiates Stage III Water Shortage Warning
Mandatory Water Use Restrictions in Effect


June 17, 2002

For more information: Paul Thames, (919) 245-2300;




I, Barry Jacobs, Chair of the Board of County Commissioners, having been provided with information that the water level of Lake Orange is more than 37 inches below full do hereby issue this PUBLIC PROCLAMATION declaring to all persons that a stage III water shortage WARNING is now in effect applicable to users of water from the public water system supplied by the Orange-Alamance Water System, Inc. and the Town of Hillsborough.  The following mandatory water conservation restrictions are now applicable:

It shall be unlawful to use water from the public water system supplied by the Orange-Alamance Water System, Inc. and the Town of Hillsborough and from any raw water supply within Orange County used by the Orange- Alamance Water System, Inc. and the Town of Hillsborough for the following purposes:

  1. To water lawns, grass, shrubbery, trees, flower and vegetable gardens except between the hours of 6:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays.

  2. To fill newly constructed swimming and/or wading pools or refill swimming and/or wading pools which have been drained.  A minimal amount of water may be added to maintain continued operation of pools which are in operation at the time the provisions of a stage III WARNING are place into effect.

  3. To operate water-cooler air conditioners or other equipment that does not recycle cooling water, except when health and safety are adversely affected.

  4. To wash automobiles, trucks, trailers, boats, airplanes, or any other type of mobile equipment, including commercial washing.

  5. To wash down outside areas such as streets, driveways, service station aprons, parking lots, office buildings, exteriors of existing or newly constructed homes      or apartments, sidewalks, or patios, or to use water for other similar purposes.

  6. To operate or introduce water into any ornamental fountain, pool or pond or other structure making similar use of water.

  7. To serve drinking water in restaurants, cafeterias, or other food establishment, except upon request.

  8. To use water from public or private fire hydrants for any purpose other than fire suppression or other public emergency.

  9. To use water for dust control or compacting.

  10. To intentionally waste water.  The owner or occupant of any land or building which receives water from the Orange-Alamance Water System, Inc. or the Town of Hillsborough and that also utilizes water from a well or supply other than that of Orange-Alamance Water System, Inc. or the Town of Hillsborough shall post and maintain in a prominent place thereon a sign furnished by Orange County giving public notice to the use of the well or other source of supply. 

This proclamation, and the mandatory conservation restrictions imposed pursuant to it, shall be in effect until the Ordinance entitled  "AN ORDINANCE PROVIDING FOR THE CONSERVATION OF WATER DURING A WATER SHORTAGE, RESTRICTING THE USE OF WATER AND WATER WITHDRAWALS, AND ALLOCATING AUGMENTED STREAMFLOW FROM RESERVOIRS" is amended or repealed or until the Chair by Public Proclamation, declares that the Stage III Water shortage WARNING is over.  By order of Barry Jacobs, Chair of the Orange County Board of Commissioners, this the 17th day of June, 2002.

Barry Jacobs, Chair        
Orange County Board of Commissioners

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The Retired & Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) in Orange County


June 14, 2002

CONTACT: Vicki Hill 919-968-2056 or

RSVP receives many requests for volunteers age 55+ from nonprofits involved in health, education, social services, consulting, sales, construction, and more. We match a volunteer’s interest and skills to a local agency’s needs. RSVP provides benefits to help with a volunteer’s activity. Call to discuss your interests. We will help find you a place 968-2056 or On the web at

  • Volunteers have made it possible for the NC Botanical Garden to be open on weekends. Visitation has increased and the Garden needs reinforcements. Weekend Volunteers are needed who are interested in greeting and helping Garden visitors, answering the phone, directing questions to staff and managing gift sales. AM and PM Saturday shifts, 4 hours; Sundays PM….Also greatly need library volunteer mainly on weekdays--flexible hours.

  • Traffic court assistants needed in Hillsborough 1st Wednesday (long-term) or Chapel Hill 2nd Wednesday (until August) to help traffic court defendants with locating proper courtroom and having their file. Tuesday file pulling-assistant for Chapel Hill also needed. You would join an experienced volunteer to help streamline this court process for the people. Orientation and training provided. Hours 8:00 am-1:00 pm, mostly sitting.

  • American Red Cross needs (1) an Administrative Volunteer to greet visitors, direct phone calls, answer questions, handle sales of class materials on Tuesdays 8:30-12:30 and (2) a Public Relations Volunteer to work with its committee on a communications plan including a brochure, news releases and newsletters.

  • Museum Volunteer to help build funding base. Prior development experience necessary.

  • Dept. on Aging’s Wellness Program is expanding its weekly Blood Pressure Checks to Northside Senior Center in Carrboro and needs a RN or LPN once a week-flexible. Also needs back-ups for Blood Pressure Checks in Hillsborough and Chapel Hill.

  • Meals on Wheels in northern Orange needs substitute drivers for the summer to deliver meals to people who are homebound. It also needs people to pack meals – no driving. 1 hour routes…. Meals on Wheels in southern Orange needs bakers, packers and drivers.

  • Help the Caregivers Day Out program provide activities to seniors while their caregivers have time to recharge. Meet with a group of seniors in Carrboro to play games, share stories, and serve lunch. Meets Fridays 9:30-2:00pm. Flexible schedule.

  • Orange County Public Library volunteer to process new books, file registrations, some computer work, children’s craft projects, summer reading program. Need to be able to move book carts, bend, computer keyboarding, attention to detail. M-F anytime.

  • Provide companionship and assistance to people in assisted living or Alzheimer’s homes from writing letters to providing a range of suitable activities.

  • Like numbers? Speak English and Spanish? RSVP is recruiting VITA volunteers of any adult age for sites in Orange and Chatham counties, including a new site in Siler City. Volunteers prepare income tax returns starting in February or serve as site coordinators. Training and materials provided.  Program is expanding. Join a fun group of experienced volunteers to provide free tax services to eligible clients.

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Stage II Water Shortage Alert Declared


June 11, 2002

For more information: Paul Thames, (919) 245-2300;


Pursuant to the provisions of the ORDINANCE PROVIDING FOR THE CONSERVATION OF WATER DURING A WATER SHORTAGE, RESTRICTING THE USE OF WATER AND WATER WITHDRAWALS, AND ALLOCATING AUGMENTED STREAMFLOW FROM RESERVOIRS, I, Barry Jacobs., Chair of the Board of County Commissioners, having been provided with information that the water level of Lake Orange is more than two feet below full, do hereby issue this PUBLIC PROCLAMATION declaring to all persons that a stage II water shortage ALERT is now in effect applicable to users of water from the public water system supplied by the Orange Alamance Water System, Inc. and Town of Hillsborough and from any raw water supply within Orange County used by the Orange-Alamance Water System, Inc. and the Town of Hillsborough.  The following voluntary water conservation measures are now applicable:

  1. Use shower for bathing rather than bathtub and limit shower to no more than four (4) minutes.

  2. Limit flushing of toilets by multiple usage.

  3. Do not leave faucets running while shaving or rinsing dishes.

  4. Limit use of clothes washers and dishwashers and when used, operate fully loaded.

  5. Limit lawn watering to that which is necessary for plants to survive.

  6. Water shrubbery the minimum required, reusing household water when possible.          

  7. Limit car washing to the minimum.

  8. Do not wash down outside areas such as sidewalks, patios, etc.

  9. Install water flow restrictive devices in shower heads.

  10. Use disposable and biodegradable dishes.

  11. Install water saving devices such as bricks, plastic bottles or commercial units in toilet tanks.

  12. Limit hours of operation of water-cooled air conditioners.

This proclamation, and the voluntary conservation restrictions imposed pursuant to it, shall be in effect until the Ordinance entitled "AN ORDINANCE PROVIDING FOR THE CONSERVATION OF WATER DURING A WATER SHORTAGE, RESTRICTING THE USE OF WATER WITHDRAWALS, AND ALLOCATING AUGMENTED STREAMFLOW FROM RESERVOIRS" is amended or repealed or until the Chair by Public Proclamation, declares that the Stage II Water Shortage ALERT is over.

By order of Barry Jacobs, Chair of the Orange County Board of Commissioners, issued this 11th day of June, 2002.

Barry Jacobs

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Agricultural Products and Services Guide
Now Available


Date: June 5, 2002

For more information: Mike Lanier, (919) 245-2330;

LOCAL HARVEST, a guide to Orange County farm products and services, is now available in hardcopy and online, at  The guide provides information on 105 farms and farm-related enterprises located throughout the county, and lists all their products and services.  For produce, the guide also shows predicted seasonal availability.  

For example, if a consumer wants to purchase blueberries, she (he) would look under fruit, find that there are five growers listed, that the berries are generally available in July and August, and that some producers sell only at local farmers markets while others have pick your own operations.  Contact information for each of the growers is provided, including email address and web site, if available.

LOCAL HARVEST is a joint effort of the Orange County Economic Development Commission and Cooperative Extension Service and is designed to help promote the goods and services produced by local farmers.  The hardcopy version of the guide will be updated annually.  The online version will be updated regularly throughout the year.

“We think the guide is a useful resource for both farmers and consumers,” Mike Lanier, Orange County Agricultural Economic Development Coordinator, said.  “We encourage citizens to check out the web site and use it often to get the most complete listings.”

For more information , contact Lanier at 245-2330 or email him at

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PCC Summer Film Students begin Production 
on Second Caswell County Docu-drama

Film Crew Will be in Orange County June 10 and 11


DATE: June 3, 2002

CONTACT: Bonnie Davis or Sarah Costello (Caswell Campus: 694-5707)

For the second consecutive summer, students in Piedmont Community College’s Film and Video Production Technology (FVPT) Summer Institute will focus on a historic Caswell County event for their film project. The students are already in production on “The Trial of Henrietta Jeffries,” a short film to be shot using digital cameras. The film is a docu-drama, based on a historic event which took place in Caswell County in 1913. A local black midwife, Henrietta Jeffries, was taken to trial for practicing medicine without a license. The infamous Judge Charlie Cooke presided and caused quite a stir by stepping down off the bench to represent the woman and stepping back up to pronounce Mrs. Jeffries innocent. 

PCC film student Tim Bennett wrote the script and is directing the film. Current students and graduates, faculty and professional mentors are filling crew positions. Members of the Jeffries family are serving as project consultants and will play various extra roles in the courtroom scenes.  

The project shoots June 7, 8 and 9 in Yanceyville at the historic Old Caswell County Courthouse. The courtroom and the old jailhouse and one room schoolhouse behind the Courthouse will be used for shooting locations. On June 10 and 11, the shoot will move to an Orange County farmhouse. 

The community is being called upon to serve as extras in the courtroom on Saturday, June 8. A bagged lunch, drinks and snacks will be provided. Black and white men and women are needed. For details, call Donald at the Production Office at (336) 694-5707, 230.  

PCC’s Summer Film Institute provides FVPT students the opportunity to take a film project from script through the production process, editing and completion of the production. Last summer’s film project, “The Murder of John Stephens,” also focused on a historic Caswell County event and went on to win numerous honors, including three Silver Reel Awards.

Additional information

  • Press are welcome to visit us on the set. Contact Mindy Scott at (336) 694-5707 for more information.
  • Contact producer Sarah Costello at (336) 694-5707 or by e-mailing her at
  • For more information about the PCC Film & Video program, visit the website at and PCC’s website at

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Orange County Experiences Twelfth and Thirteenth Terrestrial Rabies Cases


May 29, 2002

For more information: John Sauls, Animal Control Director, (919) 245-2081;

The North Carolina State Public Health Lab today confirmed rabies in two raccoons submitted Tuesday by Orange County Animal Control.

On Saturday a dog belonging to residents of the Eastwood Lake area of Chapel Hill reported their dog had returned to the house “covered in blood.” The owners washed the dog thoroughly. Later in the evening they found the carcass of a raccoon. Tuesday morning the resident took the carcass to the animal shelter in a bag. At that time he was advised to get a rabies booster for his dog which had a current valid vaccination. Animal Control informed them today that the raccoon was positive for rabies and advised that they see their physician for evaluation for the need for post exposure rabies treatment.

On Sunday morning a man who lives off Bowden Rd. near Jones Ferry Rd. found a dead raccoon in his front yard inside the electronic perimeter. He picked it up with a shovel and threw it into the woods, outside the perimeter. The next day his wife called Animal Control to report the matter. His indoor-outdoor dog had a current valid rabies vaccination. Due to the man’s contact with his dog, it was decided to send the specimen for testing. There was no known contact between the dog and the raccoon, and the dog had been recently vaccinated against rabies. 

Animal Control Director John Sauls said that these two cases illustrate the need to make sure that all dogs are always currently vaccinated against rabies. “We don’t know for sure whether or not these dogs had contact with these raccoons. Then again, there are a lot of things our dogs do that we don’t ever know about, especially if they are allowed to roam or they are confined in a large area by an electronic perimeter. For our protection and theirs, all owners should keep their pets’ vaccinations up to date. The number of dogs and cats that have become rabid in North Carolina so far this year already equals the total for all of 2001. The message is clear.”

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Orange County’s First Electronics Recycling
Event is a Success


Date: May 23, 2002

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

On Saturday April 27, 2002, the Department of Solid Waste Management held Orange County’s first electronics and computer recycling collection event at the Eubanks Road Park and Ride Lot.  Three hundred seventy-one participants brought in 33,000 pounds (16.5 tons) of electronic equipment including computer monitors, computers (CPUs), printers, keyboards, mice, photocopiers, fax machines, cell phones, telephones and telephone systems, radios, stereo receivers, stereo amplifiers, compact disc players, cassette players (tape decks), VCRs, and laser disc players.

Of the accepted materials, 9,000 pounds of working computer equipment was accepted by the International Relief Friendship Federation (IRFF).  This equipment will be sent to Cameroon for use in IRFF’s educational program with the objective being to train people to service and upgrade computers, and then to provide computers for needy communities throughout West Africa.  The remaining 24,000 pounds (12 tons) were sent to Synergy Recycling LLC, a computer recycling company in Mayodan, North Carolina.  Synergy dismantles the electronic equipment to salvage metals that are sold for scrap.  The computer monitors are shipped to company located in Pennsylvania where the Cathode Ray Tubes (CRTs) are processed and the leaded glass is recovered for recycling.  The plastic housings from the monitors are discarded along with almost all other plastic parts as no markets have yet developed for them. 

The items collected included:

  • 375 Computer Monitors (approximately 13,125 pounds)

  • 11,000 pounds of computers (CPUs)

  • 556 pounds of wire / cable

  • 677 pounds of high-grade circuit boards

  • 7,685 pounds of other electronics (printers, keyboards, stereo equipment etc.)

This collection event was the latest part of the County’s Toxicity Reduction Improvement Program (TRIP) to reduce the toxicity of the materials buried at the Orange County Landfill.  Electronics products such as computers, computer monitors and televisions account for a significant portion of the heavy metals (in particular lead, as well as some mercury and cadmium) being disposed of in the Orange County Landfill.  Communities across the country have begun to acknowledge the problems these items pose in the waste stream, and have taken measures to manage this threat.  Several states have enacted legislation banning Cathode Ray Tubes (CRTs) from landfill-based disposal, and several other states are actively considering similar legislation. 

The North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources (NC DENR) has acknowledge that commercially generated computer monitors and other electronics containing cathode ray tubes are hazardous waste, and should be managed accordingly.  Household waste is exempt from the state and federal regulations governing hazardous waste, and it is for this reason that the Department of Solid Waste Management has developed a recycling program to assist households with managing their unwanted computers and electronic equipment.

A second event is scheduled for Saturday July 27 from 8 a.m.-4 p.m. again at the Eubanks Rd. Park and Ride Lot. The County hopes to have a permanent electronics drop-off point established at the landfill late this fall.

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Orange County Household Hazardous Waste Collection is Saturday June 1


Date: May 23, 2002

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

The Orange County Household Hazardous Waste (HHW) Collection will be open Saturday June 1, 2002 at the Orange County Landfill on Eubanks Road in Chapel Hill. The event is open from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. to residents of Chatham, Durham, Orange and Wake Counties. This regularly scheduled event will continue to be held the first Saturday of each month until the end of 2002.

Summertime activities can generate materials that can be hazardous to have around, but that we do not want disposed of in our local landfill. Start the season off right by bringing fertilizers, paints, pesticides, repellants, automotive fluids (such as antifreeze, diesel fuel, gasoline, and brake fluid), cleaning chemicals, fluorescent lights, and other hazardous materials to the collection. Consider purchasing non-toxic alternatives to replace the products you bring to the collection. Wastes should not be mixed together but kept in separate, non-leaking containers with the original label intact whenever possible.  No explosive, radioactive, medical, or business wastes are accepted. 

As of April 1, 2002, a national ruling requires that all propane tanks with a capacity of 4-40 pounds must be fitted with an overflow protection device (OPD), or they cannot be refilled.  As the cookout season heats up, some people are finding they cannot refill their 20- pound propane tanks from outdoor grills because they do not have an OPD. Some propane suppliers will exchange old tanks for ones with an OPD for a one-time “upgrade fee.” Local propane companies may also accept old tanks to be exchanged, refurbished and reused, or retrofitted with the new equipment.  If residents wish to simply dispose of their old tanks, please do so responsibly!  If the tanks are 20 pounds or smaller, they may be brought to the household hazardous waste collection.

Household batteries including dry cell, button, and any other batteries, automotive (wet-cell) batteries, used motor oil and oil filters do not need to be brought to the Household Hazardous Waste Collection.  Save time in line by bringing these items to be recycled at any Orange County Solid Waste Convenience Centers.  Locations of convenience centers can be found at They are open Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday from 7 a.m.-12 p.m. and 1 p.m.-7 p.m., Saturdays from 7 a.m.-5 p.m., and Sundays from 1 p.m.-5 p.m.  

Many residents over the years have enjoyed the Paint Exchange at the Household Hazardous Waste Collection. The Paint Exchange offers to the public free latex paint in good condition that has been diverted from the HHW collection.  The Paint Exchange will be open during the June 1 HHW event.

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Nominations Sought for 2002 North Carolina Award for Outstanding Service



Contact: Leslie Holmes Gydos, Director, Volunteer Orange! 919-929-9837

The annual contest for North Carolina Award for Outstanding Volunteer Service (formerly known as the Governor's Volunteer Awards) is in progress in Orange County, N.C. Nominations were solicited from non-profit agencies in Orange County, as well as departments of the towns and of the County. The deadline for submission was May 10, 2002.

Thirty-eight nominations were received by Leslie Gydos, Director of Volunteer Orange! by the deadline. These will be judged on May 23rd. Five winners will be chosen to receive the 2002 NORTH CAROLINA OUTSTANDING VOLUNTEER AWARD. These five people will be honored at a reception later this year.

All of the other nominees will be honored at a local Orange County reception for KEY VOLUNTEERS which is held annually in October. The local volunteer awards reception is a joint recognition program between Volunteer Orange!, the Board of County Commissioners of Orange County, N.C., and the Department on Aging of Orange County.

2002 marks the 24th anniversary of these statewide awards. This program is an important part of our state's proud history and tradition of volunteerism and community service. Through the years, North Carolinians have proven their concern and compassion for their neighbors by volunteering in their local communities. Last year 403 awards were presented to recipients statewide.

Each county may select five individuals, businesses, and /or groups to be recognized for their outstanding contributions to their communities. A local committee evaluates the nominations.

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Healthy Carolinians of Orange County Receives Grant to Develop National Model


May 15, 2002

CONTACT:  Maria Hitt, 919-968-2022 Ext 291

Healthy Carolinians of Orange County has been invited to participate in a statewide initiative to develop a national model to build partnerships that address Healthy Carolinians/Healthy People 2010 objectives and national Leading Health Indicators.  Healthy Carolinians of Orange County will award at least five $2010 micro-grants to local community-based organizations in this initiative.

“Healthy Carolinians of Orange County is particularly interested in working with minority groups on this initiative.  Minority residents of Orange County suffer from some preventable health problems such as diabetes and heart disease at twice the rate of white residents” said Rosemary Summers, Orange County Health Department Director and member of Healthy Carolinians of Orange County.  Healthy Carolinians of Orange County is currently promoting physical activity, improved nutrition, child abuse prevention and adolescent pregnancy prevention and parenting but will consider applications which address any of the 2010 health objectives.

The application for the  $2010 grants will be available May 1; the deadline for submitting proposals is May 30.  Community-based organizations that want to work with Healthy Carolinians of Orange County to improve the health and well being of residents are encouraged to apply.  For further information about how to obtain these funds, call Maria Hitt, Healthy Carolinians Coordinator at 968-2022 Ext 291.

For more information about Healthy Carolinians and to review the NC 2010 health objectives, visit

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Donna Baker Appointed Clerk to the Board


May 15, 2002

Contact:  Barry Jacobs, Chair, Orange County Board of Commissioners, (919) 732-4941,

The Orange County Board of Commissioners has appointed Donna S. Baker as Clerk to the Board.  Baker will begin work Monday, June 17, 2002. 

Baker replaces outgoing Clerk to the Board Beverly A. Blythe, who is retiring July 1, 2002 after more than 18 years of service to Orange County.

As Clerk to the Board, Baker will create and maintain the permanent record of Board of Commissioners’ actions, including minutes of Board meetings and County ordinances.  She will schedule and coordinate Board of Commissioners’ meetings and assure that legally required Board operational processes and procedures are followed.  Baker also will serve as the chief liaison between the public and the Board of Commissioners, and will help steer citizens in need of assistance to the appropriate agency of County government.

Baker currently serves as Executive Assistant to the County Administrator for Georgetown County, South Carolina.  In that position, her duties have included working closely with the County Council, staff and the general public.  Baker is an honors graduate from Clemson University with 19 years work experience.

Prior to settling in South Carolina, Baker lived for more than 12 years in Orange County and held a variety of positions here, including Director of the Ronald McDonald House of Chapel Hill.

The Board of Commissioners conducted an extensive recruitment process for Clerk to the Board and received in excess of 160 applications.

Board Chair Barry Jacobs said:  “We’re sorry to see Beverly Blythe leave. She has been an exemplary public servant as well as a friend and support to citizens, staff and Commissioners alike.  We’re fortunate, however, that a person of Donna Baker’s strong qualifications and obvious enthusiasm emerged from the rich pool of candidates who applied for the position.  We know that under Ms. Baker’s leadership, our Clerk’s Office will continue to provide the prompt, responsive and effective service to which we’ve all become accustomed.”

Baker said:  “I’m delighted to be returning to Orange County.  I look forward to being a part of the Orange County government team. ”

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Animal Control Reports Ninth Confirmed Case of Raccoon Rabies for 2002


May 9, 2002

For More Information: John Sauls, (919) 245-2075;

Orange County Animal Control reported today that the State Public Health Lab had confirmed another case of rabies in a raccoon from Orange County.

On Sunday, May 5, a resident of Wilkerson Road, in the Cedar Grove community of Northern Orange County, went out into the backyard to water her dog which was chained to a trolley type runner. The dog approached her with a dead raccoon in its mouth. She called her mother who lives nearby and the two of them together used a rake to pull the raccoon’s carcass away from the dog. They then dumped the carcass in the woods behind the house. Neither touched the dog or the raccoon.

On Tuesday, May 7, the mother saw a TV news report of the then latest raccoon rabies case in Orange County and called Animal Control to report the incident with her daughter’s dog. Animal Control Officer Teer responded, took a report and recovered the raccoon carcass from the woods. He prepared and shipped it to the state lab for rabies testing. The resident thought her dog was currently vaccinated but had no vaccination certificate. The Animal Control Officer’s investigation revealed that the dog received a one-year vaccination in September of 1998 when it was nine months old but had never received a subsequent vaccination. State law dictates that such an unprotected dog that has contact with a proven rabid animal must be either euthanized or quarantined for six months at veterinarian’s facility, an animal shelter or another suitable location approved by the local health director. In this case, the resident was unable to pay for such a long-term confinement and surrendered the dog to Animal Control for euthanasia.

Animal Control Director John Sauls acknowledged that it’s a sad day when a dog has to be euthanized under these circumstances when all it would take to protect the dog is a current valid rabies vaccination. 

“Animal Control, in cooperation with local veterinarians, sponsors eight low cost rabies vaccination clinic dates per year. There are two clinic locations per date, one in Hillsborough and the second at a rotating rural site. Additionally, the APS sponsors nine such clinics per year, seven at the Orange County Animal Shelter and two at Weaver Street Market in Carrboro. To all of you reading this news report right now, I would ask you to be absolutely certain that your cats and dogs have current valid rabies vaccinations and that you be able to prove it. It is also in every pet owners interest that such vaccination be registered with Animal Control as part of the pet tax registration program”.

The next low cost rabies vaccination clinic is scheduled for Saturday, May 18, from 9 to 11 am, at the Weaver Street Market in Carrboro.

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Eighth Rabid Raccoon Confirmed in Orange County for 2002


Date: May 7, 2002

Contact: John Sauls, Animal Control , 245-2081

Animal Control reported that the state public health lab in Raleigh confirmed yet another case of rabies in the county after two such confirmations last week.

In this most recent case, a man who lives on New Sharon Church Road walked out his front door to go to work Thursday morning when he saw three dogs tree a healthy looking raccoon. One of the dogs was his, the second belonged to his neighbor and the third was a stray. The raccoon scrambled up a sapling. The man intended to drive off the dogs so as to leave the raccoon alone. Before he could, the raccoon fell out of the small tree and the dogs fell upon it for the kill. The raccoon put up a ferocious fight, scratching and biting the neighbor’s dog.  The three dogs killed the raccoon.

The man did not handle any of the dogs and neither did anyone else. After being notified, Animal Control retrieved the raccoon. The neighbor surrendered her dog for euthanasia. The stray dog was one that Animal Control had been trying to catch. Earlier attempts to capture this dog were foiled when a neighbor’s child released the trapped animal. Animal Control shot the stray dog with a tranquilizer dart but the dog still managed to escape. The man’s dog was vaccinated and boostered.

Animal Control Director John Sauls said the man in this incident did the right thing in that he did not touch or handle the involved dogs and therefore did not have to be concerned that he may have been exposed to the saliva of the rabid raccoon. It’s always possible when a dog or dogs fight with a raccoon that some of the raccoon’s saliva will land on the dog.   “He does not have to worry that he might have been exposed to any virus that would have been in the raccoon’s saliva because he did not touch any of the dogs after the incident ” stated Sauls.

Animal Control will sponsor a low cost rabies vaccination clinic on Thursday, May 9, from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m., at both the Hillsborough courthouse parking lot and Piedmont Feed and Garden Center on Highway 54 West near White Cross. Vaccinations are $5.  Dogs are to be on leashes and cats in carriers. Fractious animals are to be left in the owner’s vehicle and the veterinarian will vaccinate them there.

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Outdoor Compost Bins Still Available, Weekdays and at Two Special Events


Date: May 6, 2002

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

It is not too late for those who missed our one-day sales event!  Outdoor compost bins can be purchased for $37.00 each (includes tax) at the Orange County Solid Waste Management Office on Municipal Drive (off Airport Road) in Chapel Hill, Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m.- 4:30 p.m.

The “Home Composter” is a tidy looking cylindrical unit two feet in diameter and three feet tall that holds about 85 gallons of material. The bin is split into two halves for easy loading in just about any vehicle, and easy assembly. The Home Composter is open at the bottom so that worms and other decomposing organisms can come up through the soil to help accelerate the composting process, and to allow drainage of liquid from the composting material.  These bins can be used to compost both yard waste and vegetable or fruit scraps from the kitchen.  Each unit comes with an informational booklet that explains everything one needs to know to compost successfully at home. 

There will be an opportunity to learn about outdoor composting first-hand on Saturday May 11 at the Compost Bin Demonstration Site behind the Rose Garden at the Community Center on Estes Drive in Chapel Hill. Muriel Williman, Education and Outreach Specialist for Orange County Solid Waste Management, in cooperation with Chapel Hill Parks and Recreation, will be conducting two outdoor composting demonstrations, 10:00-11:30 a.m. and 1-2:30 p.m.  This will be a good workshop for beginners, covering the basics of home composting and troubleshooting.  Indoor composting with worms, known as vermicomposting, will also be featured.  Outdoor compost bins will be on sale at the demonstration. 

Compost bins will also be on sale at the Hillsborough Farmers Market on Saturday May 18.

Composting at home can divert 20 percent of waste being needlessly landfilled. Compost creates a rich, all-natural soil amendment that landscapes, gardens, and houseplants love, and it improves nutrient content of the soil, enhances soils’ ability to retain moisture, and can reduce reliance on chemical fertilizers.  Make every day Earth Day, compost!

If you have any questions regarding composting or other solid waste issues, please call (919) 968-2788 or email 

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Animal Control Reports 6th and 7th Rabid Raccoons for 2002


Date: May 2, 2002

For more information: John Sauls, (919) 245-2075;

The State Public Health Lab confirmed rabies in two raccoons submitted by Orange County Animal Control this week.

In the first case, residents of Graystone Lane noticed a raccoon going across the road in a strange manner. One resident’s dogs also noticed and attacked. They brought the raccoon back into their owner’s yard as the owner and his brother in law watched. The men quickly approached and pulled the dogs by their collars away from the now dead raccoon and put them in a pen. They bagged the carcass wearing gloves. The dogs were currently vaccinated and were to be boostered upon Animal Control notifying the owner of a positive result. The owner was referred to the communicable disease nurse at the Orange County Health Department while the brother in law, who had traveled home to Catawba County, referred himself to his own physician.

In the second case, a woman observed her Jack Russell Terrier jump on a raccoon in her yard. The raccoon ran up a tree and then back down again whereupon the dog again jumped the raccoon who again ran back up the tree. About this time the husband came home and called Animal Control. Before the Officer arrived the man picked up his small dog and put him in a pen. The Officer then arrived and cautioned the man that he should immediately wash his hands, which he did. The Officer shot the raccoon from the tree. The dog was currently vaccinated and was boostered. The man was satisfied that he was not exposed to rabies virus because he did not have open cuts or wounds on his hands and had not otherwise touched the dog and had washed his hands shortly after handling the dog.

At least one of the parties in the first incident elected to undergo post exposure rabies treatment. Animal Control Director John Sauls reminded residents that treatment can be avoided by owners and other involved parties if they will remember to not handle or touch the dogs in situations where the dog fights with a raccoon unless they are wearing gloves. Any such parties should immediately wash their hands after handling exposed dogs. Dogs in cases like this one should be confined to a pen or chain and left alone for at least two hours.

Animal Control will sponsor a low cost Rabies Vaccination Clinic on Thursday, May 9, from 6 pm until 7 pm, at two locations: the parking lot beside the Courthouse in Hillsborough and Piedmont Feed and Garden Center on Highway 54 West in the White Cross area. The cost is $5.00 per vaccination. Fractious animals should be left in the owner’s vehicle and the veterinarian will vaccinate them there.

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Long Vacant Old Service Station Dismantled and Recycled


May 1, 2002

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

The long-awaited redevelopment of the abandoned service station at the corner of Airport and Homestead Roads has started with an exciting deconstruction project. The owner, Danny Jones, has worked with the Dave Ghirardelli at Orange County Solid Waste Management Department and staff at the Town of Chapel Hill Planning Department to develop a plan that can ultimately mean the reuse and recycling of better than 90% of the materials on the site. The building dates from the early 60’s, but has been vacant since about 1980.

Numerous creative solutions are being employed, including removing the garage doors for reuse, dismantling the roof to salvage the rafters, and saving the plate glass from those big windows. The large fiberglass planters out front will turn into feeding troughs for a local cattle farmer and the paving bricks have already made a nice patio for one of Danny’s friends. The brick from the walls will serve as roadbed material on a Caswell County farm, the interior and exterior scrap metal will be recycled at Orange County’s facility on Eubanks Road, and the concrete from the parking lot will be used on site to build up the slope for the driveway. That pretty much just leaves the old cedar shake roof, and a small number of those will be used to build birdhouses by an artisan in Asheville.

This project has been conducted entirely by the private sector and the owner will actually save money on waste hauling and landfill tipping fees. This exciting deconstruction project represents the new face of demolition.

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Want to volunteer?


May 1, 2002

CONTACT: Vicki Hill (919) 968-2056 or

The Retired & Senior Volunteer Program of Orange County, a public service of Orange County governments, recruits and matches people 55 and over with rewarding volunteer opportunities in Orange County. RSVP volunteers receive certain benefits to make their volunteer experience more rewarding. Call 968-2056 or or see

  • Wheels for Work volunteers for bookkeeping, car repair, and financial counseling. This donated-car project repairs then provides cars to working families in need of transportation to work. Training provided.

  • Alzheimers’ residents would like to sing-a-long, listen to music, play cards. Need volunteers to assist or perform.

  • Want to help people who have experienced sexual harassment or abuse? Companions needed to respond to callers’ concerns, Community Educators to present prevention programs. Training May 21.

  • Caregiver’s Day Out program needs volunteers to buddy with seniors for 2-5 hours on Fridays. Your help will give other caregivers some personal time.

  • Volunteers interested in tutoring adult learners, esp. at OC Correctional Center or in computer-based GED classes. One-hour introduction in April; 12-hour training May 4, 6, and 8.

  • Special Olympics volunteers to help people of all ages with developmental disabilities prepare for seasonal sports events. No prior sports experience necessary.

  • Meals on Wheels needs cookers, bakers, drivers to prepare and deliver meals to our homebound friends. Routes are approx. 1 hour any day(s).

  • NC Botanical Garden needs volunteers from green thumbs to greeters. Lots of choices. Flexible schedules.

  • Help others be prepared. Join Red Cross volunteers as a disaster equipment specialist, special events coordinator, health and safety instructor, office support (desperate need), or for blood drives.

  • Inter-Faith Council volunteers help individuals, families, and children meet some of life’s challenges. Help as receptionist or substitute, story reader or tutoring, food sorter and pick-up, client interviewer, kitchen cooking group. Spanish speakers needed. Information sessions each 1st and 3rd Tues. 7:30 pm.

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