Combatting Homelessness Dealt a Setback
Fayetteville City Council and Cumberland County Commissioners treated homelessness as a top priority last year. They met last spring to coordinate their efforts. The city earmarked $50,000 and the county set aside $100,000 for homeless initiatives. In the last two weeks, Fayetteville’s emphasis on ending homelessness has fallen from a top priority last year to number eight this year. Cumberland County is the lead agency under federal guidelines, and city council members have had a hard time adjusting to that. In November, commissioners approved a plan to fill two positions, a homeless coordinator and a data analyst, and to fund a federally mandated Homeless Management Information System for the county’s Continuum of Care on Homelessness. The remainder of the money would be used to fill gaps in services for rapid re-housing and preventing homelessness. City Council balked at the idea of funding a county employee, and tabled the issue until January. Then late last month, it discussed an approach offered by freshman Councilman Kirk deViere. Council discussed details of deViere’s plan out of sight of the public… during a dinner meeting held in a small room that cannot accommodate an audience. Council decided to spend its $50,000 on direct services for the homeless, as deViere suggested, rather than help fund the county employee. The city hopes to meet with the county to develop a plan that provides direct services to those in need.
Hiring Vets Remains a Priority for Governor
“One of my highest priorities is to connect veterans with jobs in North Carolina where they can put their military training and experience to use,” Governor McCrory said. “We must encourage North Carolina businesses to take advantage of our veterans’ skills and talents and realize the value they bring to the workplace.” This was a message Greensboro-area employers heard during a military employment summit aimed at promoting veterans. Senior industry, government and military leaders came together to share their knowledge and success stories in hiring ex-military candidates to drive bottom-line business results. McCrory has tried to make North Carolina the most military- and veteran-friendly state in the nation. The governor launched North Carolina for Military Employment in March 2015 to find jobs for the more than 20,000 service members transitioning into civilian life from North Carolina bases each year. Fort Bragg is the state’s largest military post.
Army Wellness Fair
Womack Army Medical Center will host a Health and Wellness Fair for active duty service members, retirees and their families on April 16, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. The fair will feature a variety of health and fitness screenings; information booths on nutrition, diabetes, legal services and more. Yoga classes, blood donation, child safety seat checks, plus activities for children, will also be available. Admission is free. There will be booths and tables in the clinic mall area at the All American Expressway entrance to the hospital and Weaver Auditorium, as well as events outside in the parking lot near the All American Expressway entrance and in the traffic circle outside of the WAMC Orthopedic entrance.
Applications Available for Citizens Academy
Cumberland County government is accepting applications for its upcoming Citizens’ Academy weekly sessions to be held from Mar. 22 through Apr. 26. The academy is free and will be held on six consecutive Tuesdays from 6-9 p.m. at various locations. The Citizens’ Academy is designed to help residents learn more about county government and how it works. People interested in participating must be residents of Cumberland County. Class size is limited. Available slots are filled on a first-come, first-serve basis. The academy application is available online at www.co.cumberland.nc.us/publicinfo/citizensacademy.aspx.