In case you haven't heard, a General Election is coming up in November. Voter registration closes on Friday, October 10, 2014 for the November 4th General Election. Residents who wish to register in Wilkes County for the first time, or voters who wish to change their name, address or party affiliation must do so before 5:00 p.m. on October 10, 2014. Registration forms are available at the Wilkes County Board of Elections office in the County Office Building 8:30 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. Mail in registration forms are also available at the Public Library on 10th Street in North Wilkesboro. Registration forms are available at the Public Assistance Agencies, at the Employment Security Commission office, and online at www.wilkescounty.net under the elections tab. A person may also register at the Department of Motor Vehicles if renewing a license. All voter registration forms must be received by the Wilkes County Board of Elections by 5:00 pm Friday, October 10, 2014 or be postmarked October 10, 2014 to be applicable for the November 4th General Election. Persons will no longer be able to register and vote at one stop early voting, as in previous years. Again, those who wish to participate in November 4th General Elections will need to submit a voter registration form by 5:00 pm on October 10th. Also, voters who wish to have an absentee ballot mailed to them for the November General Election may do so at this time. The forms are available online at www.wilkescounty.net under the Elections tab or in-person at the Wilkes County Board of Elections office located in the Wilkes County Office Building. Completed request forms may be mailed, faxed, emailed or hand delivered to the Wilkes County Board of Elections office by Tuesday, October 28th at 5:00 pm.
The annual Wilkes County College Fair will be held at the Walker Center on the campus of Wilkes Community College on Wednesday, September 17, from 5 p.m. until 6:30 p.m. WCC is sponsoring and hosting this event in collaboration with Wilkes County Schools. Representatives from more than 30 colleges and universities will be available to speak with students and parents. Everyone is encouraged to use this opportunity to gather information about programs of study, admissions, and other college-related questions. Also, North Carolina’s MerleFest, considered one of the premier music festivals in the country, will sponsor a diverse collection of artists showcasing their music as part of the Bluegrass Ramble during the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA)’s World of Bluegrass multi-day event in Raleigh, September 30 to October 2. “MerleFest is excited to once again to be hosting a showcase during the International Bluegrass Music Association’s World of Bluegrass showcase, the Bluegrass Ramble,” said Steve Johnson, MerleFest’s artist relations manager.
Governor Pat McCrory and North Carolina Commerce Secretary Sharon Decker announced today that Enviva plans to develop two new facilities in Richmond and Sampson counties. The projects would create a combined 160 permanent jobs between the two facilities by the end of 2017 with an investment of more than $214.2 million. Enviva is one of the world’s largest producers of wood pellets made from a mix of low-grade wood resources, all of which are byproducts of the traditional sawtimber industry. Enviva wood pellets are high in density and have similar operational benefits to the coal they replace. “One of our goals in North Carolina Commerce is to help our existing industries expand and create more jobs,” said Secretary Decker. For more information about Enviva, including job opportunities, visithttp://www.envivabiomass.com/careers/
The American Red Cross is launching a first-of-its kind Blood Donor App today that puts the power to save lives in the palm of your hand. The Blood Donor App allows users to schedule blood donations, track their total donations, earn rewards and invite friends to join them on a lifesaving team. The new app is free and available for download now in app stores. “The Red Cross Blood Donor App is a new way to help meet the constant need for blood,” said Sharon Pitt, CEO for the Carolinas Blood Services Region. As the nation’s single largest supplier of blood and blood products, the Red Cross is uniquely positioned to bring this cutting edge technology to blood and platelet donors. The Red Cross has become a leader in putting vital safety information in the hands of people who need it during emergencies, with its award-winning disaster and preparedness apps downloaded more than 5 million times over the past two years. The new Blood Donor App takes it one step further by helping people save lives through blood donations. The Blood Donor App, along with the others, can be found in app stores by searching for American Red Cross, visiting redcross.org/apps or redcrossblood.org/bloodapp.
Craig Minton of the Wilkes Sheriff's Office said that the meth was shipped in from Mexico. The Wilkes Sheriff's Office issued a search warrant at 181 Jessies Park Drive in North Wilkesboro on Friday which led to the arrest of two men on multiple drug charges. Deputies found and seized 25 narcotic pills and 208 grams of methamphetamine that has the street value of $25,000. Also seized were a stolen Ruger 45 handgun and a 12 gauge shotgun. The handgun was stolen from Ashe County and the serial numbers were scratched off the shotgun. James Ronald Testerman age 55 was charged with trafficking meth, trafficking opium, 2 counts of possession with intent to sell and deliver meth and opium, 2 counts of maintaining a dwelling for a controlled substance, possession of a stolen firearm, and altering a firearm. He was taken to jail with a 50,000 dollar bond. Jeffery Thomas Patrick age 41 was charged with trafficking meth, possession with intent to sell and deliver, maintaining a dwelling for a controlled substance, and possession of drug paraphernalia. He bond was set at 25,000 dollars. Both have been released from jail on bond. It is believed that these two men were connected to Kenneth Bennett who was arrested last year in Wilkes and is currently serving time in a Federal Prison on drug and meth charges. Both Testerman and Patrick were arrested at the same place that Bennett was staying and are believed to be part of the same drug ring.
They came home from being out of state on a trip to find someone in their house. Wilkesboro Police received the call of a break-in at a house on South West Street with the owner chasing a suspect on foot. When Police arrived they found the homeowners, but the suspects were gone. The victims said they had returned from a trip out of state. While walking to the front door, they heard noises from a wooded area near their house. Once inside, a white male was seen running down a hallway and into the dining room where he exited through a window. One of the homeowners gave chase but lost the suspect in the woods. They did get a picture on their cell phone of the suspect. Police searched the area and found a man who matched the description of the suspect found in the house. He was arrested on outstanding warrants with other charges pending the home break-in investigation. Nothing was reported stolen from the home; however, there were nearly 500 dollars in damages to a door and a window of the house.
They paid for their purchases but stole the vending machine. Wilkesboro Police were called to the Run In on Oakwoods Road regarding a theft. Store management and other witnesses reported seeing a older model black Ford pickup pull into the middle row of gas pumps. Two white males came in the store and paid cash for gas and other items. They then went back to the truck where a white female was waiting. The suspects then cut a security chain on a vending machine containing children's toys, loaded up the machine on the truck, and left. Police have obtained surveillance video of the incident from the Run In and from the nearby Coffee House; they also have statements from witnesses. The owner of the stolen vending machine said the machine was valued at 700 dollars and there was 150 dollars of toys in the machine along with an unknown amount of cash. The identity of the three is unknown, but the investigation is continuing.
If you have travelled Old 16 in Wilbar recently, then you noticed some bridge construction. The N.C. Department of Transportation has closed a bridge on Old N.C. 16 North over the Middle Prong of the Reddies River in the Poplar Cove area of the Wilbar community. The DOT has built a temporary one-lane bridge and have installed traffic lights for both directions while a new bridge is being constructed.
According to a news release this week, the Police are now classifying a missing Appalachian State University student as a possibly endangered person. Anna Marie Smith, 18, was last seen on September 2. In a statement released Monday, ASU Chancellor Sheri N. Everts said, "Since our student Anna Smith was reported missing on September 3rd, there has been an outpouring of care and concern from the Appalachian community." Everts said, "All of our hearts go out to Anna’s family and loved ones during this difficult time." She thanked law enforcement for their efforts and promised campus police would continue searching for Smith. The missing 18-year-old is from High Point. Smith is described as slender with short red or blonde hair, blue eyes, and is 5' 9" tall. She has a nose piercing, a black-and-white sunflower tattoo on her upper right chest near the collar bone and Latin lettering over her lower left ribs. Anyone with information on Smith's whereabouts is asked to call ASU Police at 828-262-2150.
Governor Pat McCrory issued the following statement after speaking with Jack Truong, president and CEO of Electrolux Major Appliances North America and executive vice president of AB Electrolux. Governor McCrory said, “I had a very positive conversation with Jack Truong today, and I am excited to watch Electrolux’s continued growth and success, especially given the fact that the company’s headquarters will be located in Charlotte.” It was announced this week that AB Electrolux of Sweden, which has a major presence in North Carolina, purchased GE Appliances for $3.3 billion. Electrolux located its North American headquarters in Charlotte in 2010. In December 2013, Governor McCrory announced an $85 million expansion by Electrolux, creating 810 jobs and increasing its presence in the state. The acquisition is set to close during 2015 and is subject to regulatory approvals.