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BOCC to host Orange County Summit on WCHL on Oct. 16

The Board of Commissioners will host its second annual Orange County Summit on Wednesday, Oct. 16, from 3-7 p.m. The event will be broadcast live on WCHL and will feature panel discussions on many key issues facing the county, including affordable housing, transportation, education, tourism, the arts, workforce development and business recruitment.

Aaron Keck of WCHL will moderate the event, and each member of the board of commissioners will participate, along with officials and elected representatives from Chapel Hill, Carrboro, Hillsborough and the two public school systems. Other expected panelists include Carrboro Alderman Damon Seils, Hillsborough Town Commissioner Jennifer Weaver, Chapel Hill Town Council Member Michael Parker, Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools Board of Education Chair Joal Broun, and Orange County Schools Board of Education Chair Will Atherton.

The event will take place in the commissioner's meeting room at the Whitted Building and is open to the public.

List of topics

  • Board of County Commissioner's approach to social justice (3-3:30 p.m.)
  • Affordable Housing (3:30 – 4 p.m.)
  • Public Transportation (4-4:30 p.m.)
  • Tourism/Arts (4:30-5 p.m.)
  • Education: K-12 (5-5:30 p.m.)
  • Workforce Development (5:30-6 p.m.)
  • Industrial recruitment (6-6:30 p.m.)
  • Small business services (6:30-7 p.m.)
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Department on Aging to host ‘W(Heel) to Hill’ cycling events

The Orange County Department on Aging is inviting the public to participate in the inaugural W(heel) to Hill – Cycling Event! Orange County Senior Games will host 12.5-mile, 25-mile and 50-mile bicycle rides between the two Orange County Department on Aging’s senior centers, the Seymour Center in Chapel Hill and the Passmore Center in Hillsborough (and back).

The event will kick-off at 1 pm on Sunday, Oct. 27, at the Seymour Center, located at 2551 Homestead Road in Chapel Hill. Check-in will be at noon.

The event is a casual bike ride for adults to raise awareness and funds for the year-round Senior Games program.

Registration forms are available at the Passmore Center, Seymour Center, Carrboro Recreation & Parks, Chapel Hill Parks & Recreation, Orange County Parks & Recreation, and online at
  • Fee: $15 preregistration/$20 on day of event
For more information about the event, please email Myra Austin, Orange County Senior Games Coordinator, or call 919-245-2020.

Fees eliminated for cash deposits at Detention Center ATM

The ATM machine in the lobby of the Orange County Detention Center, operated by OASIS Management, will no longer assess any direct fees for cash deposits made on behalf of incarcerated individuals by their friends and loved ones. This change follows an agreement signed last month between OASIS and the Sheriff’s Office.

“Orange County government is committed to reducing excessive fees assessed against justice-involved individuals and their families,” said Caitlin Fenhagen, Criminal Justice Resource Director for Orange County. "Eliminating transaction fees for cash deposits is a small, but important, step toward this goal."

The detention center is cashless; when a person is booked into the facility, he or she must deposit any money they have on their person into an account. To do this, the inmate uses a kiosk inside the detention center in the booking room. The inmate receives the full value of his or her initial deposit. The money is then available for haircuts or to purchase snacks, preferred personal hygiene supplies, or items such as stamps, art pads and Bibles.

However, inmates may have little or no money with them at the time they are booked into the detention center. Therefore, family and friends often deposit funds into the account of their loved one during his or her stay at the facility. Fees will still be assessed for credit and debit deposits made at the ATM in the lobby or online, but individuals depositing cash at the ATM in the lobby of the detention center will no longer incur a $3 transaction fee.
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Business Planning for Farmer Entrepreneurs Class Begins Oct. 17

Orange County Cooperative Extension and SCORE of Chapel Hill are offering a Business Planning class for current and aspiring farmers beginning Oct. 17, 2019.  Students who participate in the class will also have an opportunity to work with a SCORE mentor who will help teach and guide novice business owners along their entrepreneurial journey.

Most farmers’ primarily think about production issues, but running a successful farm business is about much more. Writing a business plan is a great first step in educating business owners about all aspects of their business and being prepared for unexpected issues that will assuredly occur. 

This class is part of the PLANT Beginning Farmer program run by Orange County Cooperative Extension that started in 2008. It will meet for five sessions lasting from 6 to 9 p.m. on Thursday nights from Oct. 17 through Nov. 21 (no class on Halloween night). The class will meet at the Cooperative Extension office at 306-E Revere Road, Hillsborough.

This class costs $100 per student. To register, please click here. The registration deadline is October 11th.

Anyone interested in this class or any aspect of the Beginning Farmer Program can call Mike Lanier at 919/245-2063 to discuss their interest.

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Grants to fund wellness, entrepreneurial initiatives at library

The Orange County Public Library has been awarded grants to pilot new initiatives to serve residents. Grant funds are coming from two sources--the State Library of North Carolina and NC IDEA, a private foundation in Durham, NC. The grants will enable the library systems to offer health and wellness and entrepreneurial support programs.

“During our strategic planning process we heard from residents that while they wanted us to continue offering traditional library services, like storytimes, they wanted us to offer more to adult learners.” Lucinda Munger, library director explained. “Both of these initiatives meet that objective.”
  • Click here to learn more about the initiatives.
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