Local News

High School blood donors eligible to win car in local drawing

14 Chevy SparkOne lucky student will be driving to school in a brand-new car, just for giving the gift of life. Cape Fear Valley Blood Donor Center and Powers Swain Chevrolet are teaming up to give away a Chevy Spark to promote blood donations among area high schoolers. The two-door hatchback’s winner will be picked at random in a drawing next year.

High school students who donate by May 15, 2021, are eligible to be entered in the drawing. Official rules are available at the Blood Donor Center.

The winner must be enrolled in a public, private, virtual or homeschool high school in Cumberland, Bladen, Harnett or Hoke county. The prize drawing will be held May 17 at Powers Swain Chevrolet in Fayetteville.

The Blood Donor Center is in continuous need of blood donations because its blood products help patients throughout southeastern North Carolina. Currently, the center needs all blood types.

High school donations help the center maintain a safe, adequate blood supply during most years. Nearly half the blood Cape Fear Valley uses for patient transfusions during school months comes from high school student donations.

Due to COVID-19, schools are not allowing blood drives, so students are encouraged to donate at the Blood Donor Center located at 3357 Village Drive in Fayetteville or at a bloodmobile drive in the community.

Information about becoming a donor and a complete schedule of upcoming blood drives are available at www.savingliveslocally.org.

Blood drives scheduled for the next week include:
Panda Express
Nov. 4, 12 to 4 p.m.
585 Cross Creek Mall

Reserve at Carrington Place
Nov. 5, 3:30 to 6:30 p.m.
6511 Lexi Lane

Plantation at Fayetteville
Nov. 6, 2 to 5 p.m.
3050 Plantation Garden Blvd.

St. Ann Catholic Church
Nov. 7, 9:00 a.m. to noon
357 N. Cool Spring St.

HWY 55 Burgers Shakes & Fries
Nov. 8, 1 to 4 p.m.
380 Laurinburg Road, Raeford

Rustic Burger
Nov. 10, 2 to 6 p.m.
2653 Hope Mills Road

Cape Fear Ortho and Sports Med
Nov. 11, 1 to 4 p.m.
4140 Ferncreek Dr. Suite 801

Pictured: A Chevy Spark similar to the one shown in this stock image will be given to a high school blood donor in a drawing to be held May 17, 2021. Nearly half the blood Cape Fear Valley uses for transfusions comes from high school blood donations, which are down because schools have been closed during the pandemic.


PWC names Ball as new CEO/General Manager

11 Elaina BallThe Fayetteville Public Works Commission announced that Elaina Ball will be the utility’s next CEO/General Manager. Ball, who brings 14 years of utility experience to PWC, is the first female leader in PWC’s 115-year history and just the 9th CEO/General Manager. Ball will join PWC Dec. 1 and succeeds David Trego who will retire Dec. 31 after leading PWC since 2015.

Ball comes to PWC from El Paso Electric where she served as Senior Vice President in Operations and Administration roles. Since 2018, she oversaw functional areas of the Company including Power Generation, Power Marketing, T&D, Customer Care, Technology, Safety, Environmental and Public Relations and Corporate Communications.

“Elaina has a wealth of experience in the electric industry, including generation, which is a huge asset for us, “said PWC Chair Wade Fowler.

“She’s been a leader at outstanding utilities including public power utilities in San Antonio and Austin Texas," Fowler said. "She was highly sought after by several other organizations and we are very fortunate that she chose PWC and Fayetteville. We are excited about the future of PWC and what she brings to it. She’s a very relationship oriented and in addition to PWC, is looking forward to her involvement in the community.”

She was responsible for over 800 employees and helped El Paso set new records for annual customer satisfaction scores and earn its first JD Power top performing utility award in 2019 as well as helping them through a successful merger with IIF, an infrastructure investment fund advised by J.P. Morgan. El Paso Electric is a regional electric utility that serves over 400,000 customers in a 10,000 square mile area of the Rio Grande valley in west Texas and southern New Mexico.

Ball served in leadership roles at two of the nation’s largest municipally owned electric systems. Prior to joining El Paso Electric, Ball worked at Austin Energy, the publicly owned electric utility serving 450,000 customers in the Austin, Texas area. While at Austin Energy, she served as Chief Operating Officer and was responsible for power generation, transmission and distribution, information technology and onsite energy resources. She also served on the board of the South Texas Nuclear Project electric generating station.

Ball served as Vice President, Technical Services at CPS Energy, the municipally owned electric and gas utility serving over 800,000 customers in the greater San Antonio area from 2006-2012. At CPS, she was responsible for electric transmission, substation and distribution engineering, and operational technology, among other functions.

“I’m very excited to join the great team at the PWC and for our family to be a part of this community,” said Ball. “PWC is a significant asset and plays a vital role in the community’s success. It is known throughout both the electric and water utility industry for its excellent operations and I look forward to continuing the legacy of strong leadership at the PWC and continuing that excellence of providing safe and reliable service to our customers.”

Ball is an active civic leader, currently serving on the El Paso Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors and El Pasoans Fighting Hunger Board of Directors. She is also a current Board of Directors member of the Association of Women in Energy. A native of Texas, Ball has a Bachelor of Science degree in chemical engineering from The University of Texas at Austin.

Fayetteville PWC is a municipally owned utility that provides electric, water and wastewater service to over 118,000 customers in Fayetteville/Cumberland County. PWC has over 600 employees and is the 37th largest municipal electric utility in the U.S.

Pictured: Elaina Ball

Regional sports facility approved

07 baseball softball complexThe Fayetteville City Council has decided to locate a $9 million sports complex on property owned by the U.S. Army at I-295 and McArthur Road. Council had also considered a city-owned tract on Fields Road in East Fayetteville. A five-year lease agreement with Fort Bragg calls for developing the first phase of the sports complex at a cost of $3.5 million. The city approved a memorandum of understanding with Fort Bragg to build baseball and softball fields which would be shared by Fort Bragg troops and the general public.

The city will build and maintain the complex, which will provide priority use by soldiers during specified weekly time periods. The money to launch the complex will be drawn from proceeds of the 2016 $35 million parks and recreation bond referendum. The facility will eventually include additional sports and recreation facilities which have not yet been designated by the city. The City Council was divided on the initial agreement, with council members Shakeyla Ingram, Courtney Banks-McLaughlin and Tisha Waddell dissenting.

They preferred the Fields Road site. Citizens "east of the river have been advocating for development and investment for longer than I have been alive," Ingram said. Councilman Chris Davis called her remarks divisive, pointing out that 60% of bond revenues have been spent in Ingram’s district. District 2 consists of the region east of the river and the downtown business area. A staff report provided to council earlier proposes opening this first phase of the sports complex two years from now.

City Council also agreed on a $1.5 million upgrade of the Jordan Soccer Complex at Methodist University. The city/county recreation and parks department will install a lighting system and renovate the soccer fields and parking facilities. The university gets the upgrades, while the city hopes the improvements will generate greater interest in sanctioned tournament play to generate income. The lease provides for open use of the soccer fields by the public when tournaments are not being held. The agreement also officially designated the complex as the trailhead for the Cape Fear River Trail. Recreation Director Michael Gibson said this project gives the city the ability to expand its soccer and football programs while also providing 35 acres of undesignated green space.

In other business at the Oct. 26 meeting, City Council members unanimously approved an agreement with Fayetteville State University to develop a multi-million-dollar East Senior Center at the intersection of Filter Plant and Murchison Roads. It will resemble the first of two regional senior centers funded by the 2016 parks and recreation referendum. The Senior Center West was built adjacent to the recreation center at Lake Rim. Gibson said this project will be a "game-changer" for redevelopment of the Murchison Road corridor.

Pictured: Fayetteville City Council voted to locate a $9 million sports complex on property owned by the U.S. Army at I-295 and McArthur Road. The completed baseball and softball fields would be shared by Fort Bragg troops and the general public. (Photo for illustration purposes.)

Proposed inter-basin water transfer

10 Cape Fear River 2Fayetteville depends on the Cape Fear River for water and is impacted by inter-basin water transfers. The Fayetteville Public Works Commission is asking the public to comment on Fuquay-Varina’s proposed inter-basin transfer from the Cape Fear River basin to the Neuse River basin.

PWC’s hope is that a thorough process will include full consideration of the impact on all communities downstream on the Cape Fear River and that before any IBT certificate is issued, it has been demonstrated there is no alternate option that would eliminate the need for an IBT. Fuquay-Varina is requesting an average transfer of approx. 4 million gallons per day and a maximum day transfer of 8 million gallons from the Cape River basin to the Neuse River basin.

The request is based on 2055 water demand projects in the town’s service area. Previous agreements have included requirements for water to be returned to the Cape Fear River. The NC Division of Water Resources makes any decisions relating to such requests. Public comments can be submitted to msadler@hazenandsawyer.com. The public comment period closes on Nov. 20.

The Electoral College

09 2020 electionPresidential elections in America are unique. In other U.S. elections, candidates are elected directly by the people. But the president and vice president are not. Instead, they’re chosen by “electors” through a process called the Electoral College.

This process of using electors is prescribed in the Constitution. Changing the system would require a constitutional amendment. Electoral College vote totals determine the winner, not the statistical plurality or majority a candidate may have in national popular vote totals.

Electoral votes are awarded on the basis of the popular vote in each state. 48 out of the 50 states award electoral votes on a winner-takes-all basis, as does the District of Columbia.

For example, all 15 of North Carolina’s electoral votes go to the winner of the state election, even if the margin of victory is only 50.1 percent to 49.9 percent.

The number of electors each state has is based on the total number of U.S. senators and members of the U.S. House of Representatives. Those numbers are based on each state’s population. California has the largest population. North Carolina is ranked 10th.


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