Rep. Virginia Foxx, R-N.C., last week voted in favor of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2016, which authorizes funding for America’s military and defense initiatives. It passed the House by a vote of 269-151. “Providing for the common defense of the United States of America is the federal government’s primary responsibility,” said Foxx. The bill authorizes $515 billion in discretionary spending for national defense, which includes funding for the pay and benefits of the nation’s troops and their families. Additionally it authorizes $89.2 billion for overseas contingency operations. During debate, Foxx supported an amendment by Rep. Mo Brooks, R-Ala., that removed language from the bill encouraging the Secretary of Defense to waive enlistment requirements for illegal aliens. “The National Defense Authorization Act is not the place for a debate on immigration,” said Foxx.
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The Wilkes Sheriff’s Office wound up a 48-person drug roundup over the weekend. The 48 drug arrests were the result of a 3 ½ month investigation. The 48 included a man from Haymeadow Church Road, Bill Simpson, Jr., who had 38 grams of cocaine at his residence. Alexander County Sheriff’s Dept helped in apprehending Bradley Smith of Taylorsville. An undercover investigation led to a traffic stop in Wilkes where 48 grams of crack cocaine were seized from Smith’s car. A Wilkes County woman who lives near Jonesville had a meth lab, 70 prescription pills, 12 grams of cocaine, and 2 grams of meth in her house at the time of her arrest. Also a Wilkesboro man with ties to Mexico was arrested with 14 grams of meth from Mexico in his possession. In all over 500 pills were seized along with 130 grams of cocaine and 2 meth labs. Street value of the drugs seized by the Wilkes Sheriff’s Office was in excess of $30,000. All 48 individuals arrested have been charged. Some remain in the Wilkes County Jail, and some have made bail.
In Moravian Falls a thief or thieves got away with $13,000 in property and $13,000 in damages. The Wilkes Sheriff's Office was called to a home break-in. The victim told Sheriff's Deputies that when he returned home, he found that someone had broken into the residence through a basement door. The thief was able to take away a GE Gas Range, GE Refrigerator, a Wood Stove, a Honda Pressure Washer, a Stihl Chain Saw, a Makita hand saw, a Dewalt Cordless tool set, a Bosch Table saw, and miscellaneous hand tools. Again stolen property was valued at $13,000. There was damage throughout the house including: INSULATION, BASEMENT DOOR, BATHTUB, and DISHWASHER. Damages were also estimated at approximately $13,000. No suspects were listed with the report; the Sheriff's investigation is continuing.
In McGrady there was another theft but no damages this time. The Wilkes Sheriff's Office was called regarding a theft from the victim's yard. This time of year it seems there are several thefts of lawn and garden equipment. The McGrady property owner reported that someone has taken his Murray Riding Mower. It was in his yard under a tarp. The stolen lawn mower was valued at $500. Again, there are no suspects.
Looks like the thief hooked up and drove off with some property. The Wilkes Sheriff's Office was called to investigate the larceny at a Hwy 268 location. According to the homeowner, her son is currently working out of state and had a variety of things stored across from her house in an open area beside Hwy 268. Recently, she noticed that a pull behind camper and a utility trailer that was stored there, unsecured, were missing. The 32` PULL BEHIND CAMPER and 16` TRAILER were valued at $4000.
Wilkesboro and North Wilkesboro Police departments have been working together to determine who had been using a fake credit card in area businesses. The Police were able to obtain credit card receipts and in-store video to determine a 56-year-old white male as a suspect. Numerous charges have been made in both towns using the fake American Express card. Police have obtained a name for the suspect and charges are pending.
The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services' Division of Public Health (DPH) encourages North Carolinians to be aware of their surroundings and take precautions while enjoying the North Carolina outdoors to prevent the spread of rabies. Rabies is a deadly viral disease that attacks the central nervous system of warm-blooded animals, particularly mammals. In North Carolina, raccoons and bats serve as the source for most rabies viruses. These species may infect other animals such as skunks, red and gray foxes, coyotes, groundhogs and beavers. Any animal infected with rabies poses a human health risk. In 2014, there were more than 350 cases of animal rabies in North Carolina. Steps you can take to protect yourself, loved ones and pets include: Vaccinate your pets against rabies and keep the vaccinations current. Do not feed pets outdoors. Pet food attracts wildlife. Secure garbage cans with wildlife-proof lids. In the United States, human fatalities associated with rabies occur in people who fail to seek medical assistance, usually because they were unaware of their exposure. In most cases, fatality from rabies in infected humans can be prevented by prompt medical attention and vaccination.
Wilkes Community College recognized its 2014-2015 retirees on Thursday, May 14, at the Spring Faculty/Staff Luncheon. Those recognized for their years of service as they retire are Kathryn Abernathy, Anita Crunk, Kathy Johnson, Tam Hutchinson, Lynn Osborne, Alan Richey and Dr. Dean Sprinkle. Dr. Jeff Cox, WCC president, recognized this year’s retirees saying, “It is appropriate that we pause to recognize those who have given so much to the college and played such a pivotal role in its development. These seven individuals, who have given a cumulative total of 159 years of service to the college, have been instrumental in molding and shaping the college as we know it today." Each honoree received a retirement package for 2015-2016 that included tuition/registration fee for one WCC course; two complimentary tickets for the Walker Center 2015-2016 Season Shows; two MerleFest 2016 VIP passes with on-campus parking compliments of the WCC Endowment Corporation, and several other college gifts.
Foxx Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA). “Congress should be vigilant in ensuring that the government doesn't infringe upon the constitutional rights of individual Americans, and I believe this legislation renews a focus on the civil liberties of our citizens while providing appropriate, narrow authorities to meet the country’s national security needs,” said Foxx. H.R. 2048, the USA FREEDOM Act, would protect civil liberties by ending bulk data collection. It also improves transparency by making the Attorney General and the Director of National Intelligence to disclose how they use these national security authorities. Additionally the legislation would strengthen national security by closing a loophole that requires the government to stop tracking foreign terrorists when they enter the United States, by increasing the statutory maximum prison sentence to 20 years for providing support to a foreign terrorist organization, and by enhancing investigations of international proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. The House passed H.R. 2048 by a vote of 338-88.
After the passage of the Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act by the U.S. House of Representatives this week, American Family Association (AFA, www.afa.net) is applauding the measure that will protect millions of unborn babies. “American Family Association is sending sincere thanks to our lawmakers for standing up for unborn children everywhere with the passage of this historic measure,” said AFA President Tim Wildmon. “AFA is a tireless advocate for the unborn, and all of us hope this measure will be the beginning of the end of abortion in America—a black mark on our history, as 56 million babies have been killed since the Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade decision of 1973.” Lawmakers in the US House passed the bill last week that bans abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy.