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Local Government
Union County Gets New Superior Court Judge PDF Print E-mail
Local Government
By Administrator   
Tuesday, 20 August 2019 08:34

Governor Roy Cooper has appointed the Honorable Nathan Hunt Gwyn, Jr. to preside in Union County Superior Court. He will fill the vacancy created by the retirement of Senior Resident Superior Court Judge Christopher Bragg.

“Judge Gwyn is a valuable member of his community and I am grateful he will continue to serve on the bench in this new role,” said Gov. Cooper.

Judge Gwyn will serve as a Superior Court Judge for Judicial District 20B. He has served as Chief District Court Judge since 2011. Prior to presiding as Chief Judge, Gwyn practiced in a variety of roles, including: District, Family, & Juvenile Court Judge for District 20B; Senior Assistant District Attorney for Union, Anson, Richmond, and Stanly Counties; and Assistant District Attorney for Union, Anson, Richmond, Stanly, and Moore Counties. Gwyn received his Juris Doctor degree from North Carolina Central University School of Law, and a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

An active member of his community, Gwyn has previously worked with the Juvenile Crime Prevention Council and as an advisory board member with the Union County Criminal Justice Partnership Program. In addition, he has served on the Board of Governors for the N.C. Association of District Court Judges and as a presiding judge for the Union County DWI Treatment Court.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 20 August 2019 08:35
 
Union County Recognized For Technology Practices PDF Print E-mail
Local Government
By Administrator   
Tuesday, 30 July 2019 09:11

Union County is being recognized as a national leader in implementing the best technology practices among more than 3,000 U.S. counties.

The Center for Digital Government and the National Association of Counties awarded Union County 10th place in its population category in the 17th annual Digital Counties Survey. The survey analyzes innovative initiatives that streamline delivery of government services, encourage collaboration and shared services, enhance cybersecurity and contribute to disaster response recovery efforts.

“Our team has worked hard to constantly evolve Union County’s technology programs and plans; enabling us to continue providing residents exceptional access to important services,” said Carl Lucas, Director of Information Systems.

Contributing factors for the County receiving this award include upgrading audio and video systems for livestreaming Board of Commissioners meetings and plans for a robust data analytics program that will store more documents digitally. In similar cost-saving measures, moving to paperless systems has saved up to $15,000.

“Union County will continue implementing strategies that improve transparency and boost resident engagement,” said County Manager Mark Watson. “These technologies improve our efficiency and lower the cost of providing public services.”

For more information about the Digital Counties Survey Awards, visit the Government Technology website.

 

 
$112 Million Released For Local Water Projects PDF Print E-mail
Local Government
By Administrator   
Tuesday, 23 July 2019 09:39

The State Water Infrastructure Authority has approved $112 million in loans that will help North Carolina communities pay for 26 much-needed drinking water and wastewater projects statewide, from Murphy to Manteo.

The Town of Murphy in Cherokee County will receive $794,250 for sewer repair near the Hiawassee River, and the Town of Manteo will receive $1.1 million, with $500,000 in principal forgiveness, for moving their pump station out of a flood-prone area to increase resiliency in future storms.

Elsewhere in the state, approved projects range from improvements to the North Wilkesboro drinking water system to solar panel installation at the wastewater treatment plant in Benson to improvements to Waynesville’s wastewater treatment plant. The City of Greenville received $20 million for a project that would upgrade and expand its water treatment plant, allowing the city to grow. The City of Fayetteville received $22.5 million in vital sewer funding, including $6.3 million to improve efficiency by replacing six pumps at its Big Rockfish sanitary sewer.

“North Carolina’s communities need strong, resilient water infrastructure to support economic development,” said Governor Cooper. “These loans begin to address the challenge based on the greatest need. To close the remaining funding gaps, I have proposed an education and water bond in this year’s budget so that more towns and counties can get the foundation they need to grow and attract jobs.”

The 20-year infrastructure needs for the state range from $17 to $26 billion for drinking water and wastewater systems combined according to estimates by the Environmental Finance Center at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill.

Aging water infrastructure, often installed more than a century ago, is a major challenge in North Carolina and nationwide. Towns are often overwhelmed by the costs of addressing the pressing needs of their utilities, and the costs increase when needed work is postponed.

“The funding made available through these loans will help protect drinking water and build, repair and maintain systems that need to be resilient not only for future storms but to pave the way for economic opportunity. North Carolina’s towns need reliable systems with enough capacity to accommodate economic and population growth and meet the daily needs of its residents,” said Kim Colson, director of DEQ’s water infrastructure division.

Funds for selected projects across the state were awarded through the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund loan program and the Clean Water State Revolving Fund loan program. Requests for nearly $321 million for water infrastructure projects were received in April, with $112 million available for requested funding.

The application period for the authority’s next round of funding ends on Sept. 30. The Division of Water Infrastructure will conduct statewide training sessions for interested applicants July 24 through Aug. 9

Last Updated on Tuesday, 23 July 2019 09:41
 
Johnston County Sells Voter Approved Bonds PDF Print E-mail
Local Government
By Administrator   
Friday, 12 July 2019 08:21
Johnston County sold $20 million of general obligation bonds from the $76 million November 2018 voter-approved education referendums.  The low bidder was Bank of America Merrill Lynch at a fixed 20 year “all-in” rate of 2.46%.  There were 11 bidders.
 
According to County Manager, Rick Hester, “The County’s strong credit ratings and several other factors played into this successful sale.  Those factors include, but are not limited to, financial policies the Board of Commissioners put in place, the impressive job the County’s finance team does, and a vibrant local economy.  Plus, it didn’t hurt that interest rates have recently dropped some.”
 
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