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Letters to the Editor

Thanks for community help with pull tabs

The pull tab campaign is still ongoing and American Legion Post 532 still needs your help. 
The Legion collected 82 pounds of pull tabs from the community and a total of 4,194 pounds were turned in to be recycled.
Many tabs are needed as it takes approximately 200 pounds of tabs to help one family in a Ronald McDonald house for one night. 
The actual price that the tabs will provide is dependant on the current cost of aluminum per pound. 
The estimate is based on a 50 cent price.
Some of the common containers that are used yield the following:
• gallon milk jug - 3 pounds
• two liter bottle - 1.75 pounds
• sandwich size baggie - .5 or 1/2 pounds
• gallon size baggie - 2.5 or 2 1/2 pounds
Pull tabs are easy to collect.
The tabs can be dropped off at the Clay County Progress office at 43 Main Street in Hayesville. 
We have another year to collect. Let’s see if we can beat the previous total for the year.
Thank you for your participation in the past and we look forward to collecting more tabs for Ronald McDonald House in the future.
Phil Cantley 


Why tax an overburdened population more?

Your recent article, “Hearing sparks talk of tax increase,” seems to show a glaring lack of respect from some of the county commissioners for the property owners. 
A vote down on a quarter cent sales tax does not “essentially” vote up a property tax increase. 
The decline to accept such a small sales tax increase shows that 2/3rds of the county’s voters want no tax increases at all. Mr. Roach admits to some bloat in the county budget. Why are commissions discussing increases prior to eliminating the bloat? 
Our county government workers seem well taken care of both in wage and benefit as compared to many, many local property owners. 
Many property owners have not had a pay increase in a decade or more, while paying ever increasing insurance premiums. 
Retiree property owners have seen the minuscule increases in Social Security retirement benefit be applied to increasing costs of their part B Medicare benefit. Part B pays only 80 percent of covered costs, requiring additional insurance and ever increasing premiums. 
Commissioners seem to be confusing needs with wants. 
In my last decade of working years I saw no wage increases, nor was I offered any benefits at all. 
As for the voting machine mandate, the voting machines performed adequately in the most recent election — the mandate must wait. 
The new property evaluations will surely show changes. Isn’t that the more appropriate time to revisit millage rate changes? If our properties increase in value, then the county gains taxes. 
If the property values decline, then owners will see lower taxes and possibly be more amenable to a millage rate increase.
Thank you for this opportunity to voice,  Linda Inveninato

Soccer board says thanks for successful event

Hayesville youth soccer board would like to thank everyone that came out to support our 3v3 tournament Saturday June 17. We had a good turn out and everyone enjoyed the day at the fields. 
We would personally like to thank the Clay County Sheriff’s Office, for all their help with the food and cooking. Next, we would like to thank Ingles for all their help. 
Thank you to the Clay County Progress for their advertising. We would also like to thank the Clay County Jail for making cookies to go with our hamburgers and hotdogs. Also like to thank Triple M Farms for their generous $500 business donation and for providing boiled peanuts for us to sell. 
We would also like to thank The Richbourg family for making and selling sno-cones for us. 
Last but not least thank you to the following business that donated items or gift certificates for us to raffle off: Copper Door, Chevelle’s, Just Stitchin, Tri-County Office Supply, Roma’s Pizzeria, Olivia’s Chic Boutique, McDonald’s, Rib Country, Best Lil’ Ice Cream Parlor, Brother’s Restaurant, Angelo’s Downtown Pizza, Bella Boutique, Hogsed’s, Green Willow Gifts, Mountain Building Supply, Eller and Owens, Mountain Valley Country Store, Dove Profiles, Michele’s Perfect Images, Jacky Jones Dodge, Jacky Jones Ford, Bar W Rodeo Company.
Thank You from the HYSA Board Members:
Holly Norris, 
Jeff Richbourg, 
Angela Ashley, 
Wesley Norris
Kelli Lindsay

Clarifying solar eclipse sales benefitting CCCRA

Our sincere thanks to the public for your fabulous support of the main Clay County Communities Revitalization Association fund-raising venture for 2017. 
Your overwhelming response is appreciated and everyone’s excitement about the upcoming once in a lifetime solar eclipse is contagious. We will continue our sales every Saturday from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. in front of Nantahala Bank and at the Friday Night Summer Concert Series. 
We also have merchandise for sale at the Chamber of Commerce and will be selling our merchandise on the square during the Solar Feast celebration on Saturday, Aug. 19.
We would like to clarify a question that has arisen. Yes, similar merchandise is available in our area. However, only the sales conducted at the above locations benefit CCCRA and our many projects. Look for the CCCRA logo and CCCRA volunteers to be assured that revenue from the sales do truly benefit our organization. CCCRA does not receive any proceeds from other portable or storefront sale locations in Clay or surrounding counties.
We have a wide assortment of memorabilia available and continue to be your source for locally designed gear with new exclusive designs coming this week. Our solar viewing glasses are made in the USA and are ISO 12312-2 certified to provide the proper eye protection while viewing an eclipse.
Your purchase supports our various projects, including the historic courthouse restoration, Cherokee Heritage education programs, and trails and green ways projects, including Jackrabbit Trail and Quanassee Path. 
Thank you again for your fabulous support and we look forward to seeing you at our CCCRA sales locations.
Barbara Deas, Secretary CCCRA

Confederacy represents a time that was filled with hatred, racism

In response to Carl Maxwell’s letter to the editor, “Misconceptions abound concerning the history of the Confederate War” printed on June 15.
As interesting as 19th century tariffs and bumper stickers might be, I think that it might be more instructive to consider how the Confederates themselves explicated their cassus belli in their own words: “The new (Confederate) constitution has put at rest forever all the agitating questions relating to our peculiar institutions— African slavery as it exists among us — the proper status of the negro in our form of civilization. This was the immediate cause of the late rupture and present revolution, Civil War. The prevailing ideas entertained by him (Thomas Jefferson) and most of the leading statesmen at the time of the formation of the old constitution were, that the enslavement of the African was in violation of the laws of nature; that it was wrong in principle, socially, morally and politically. Our new Government is founded upon exactly the opposite ideas; its foundations are laid, its cornerstone rests, upon the great truth that the negro is not equal to the white man; that slavery, subordination to the superior race, is his natural and normal condition.”
—Alexander Stephens, vice president of the Confederate States of America, March 21, 1861
“As a people, we are fighting to maintain the heaven-ordained supremacy of the white man over the inferior or colored race, the Confederate flag would soon take rank among the proudest ensigns of the nations, and be hailed by the civilized world as the white man’s flag. As a national emblem, it is significant of our higher cause, the cause of a superior race.”
— William T. Thompson, designer of the Confederate flag, May 4, 1863
“We regard every man in our midst an enemy to the institutions of the South, who does not boldly declare that he believes African slavery to be a social, moral and political blessing.”
— Atlanta Confederacy, 1860
“The question of slavery is the rock upon which the old government split: it is the cause of secession.”
— G. T. Yelverton, Alabama Secession Convention, January 25, 1861
“There is but one single subject of complaint which Virginia has to make against the government under which we live; a complaint made by the whole South and that is on the subject of African slavery...”
— John B. Baldwin, Virginia Secession Convention, March 21, 1861
“It is time for all patriots to be united... determined to live or die in defence of the God given right to own the African.”
— Richard Thompson Archer, Dec. 8, 1859
“The moment this House undertakes to legislate upon this subject [slavery], it dissolves the Union. Should it be my fortune to have a seat upon this floor, I will abandon it the instant the first decisive step is taken looking towards legislation of this subject. I will go home to preach, and if I can, practice, disunion, and civil war, if needs be. A revolution must ensue and this republic sink in blood.”
— James H. Hammond, congressman from South Carolina.
From its very conception the Confederacy was never about anything other than white supremacy, racism, oppression and hatred. To suggest otherwise is to be either profoundly disingenuous or deeply ignorant of history.
Emmet Bondurant

Join Friends of Moss Memorial Library to support the literary efforts

Another year has come and gone and it is again time for our Friends of the Moss Memorial Library annual open house. 
I am reminded daily that a library is more than a place to check out books or use a computer. 
It is a place to learn new things, meet new friends, attend presentations and bring your children for stories and other fun activities. 
Our library is a focal point of our community as it should be. I think of one of my favorite quotes, “Bad libraries build collections, good libraries build services, great libraries build communities,” — R. David Lankes.
It would be difficult to imagine life in a small community, such as Clay County without our library. Our library is a better place and adds to our community because of the Friends of the Library. 
The Friends provide substantial monetary support to the library at a time when funding from the government is being reduced. 
Donations to the Friends make possible book and computer purchases. The Friends provide money for daily supplies to keep the library running smoothly. 
Our bookstore is one of the most successful businesses in town and other businesses benefit from the people who come to the bookstore. 
The Friends purchased a multi-media/task table for use by our young children. These tables are also used in pre-school and elementary schools as state of the art learning tools. 
We also provided the library with much needed CD cases used to protect our audio books. 
The Friends keep the library grounds looking great all year, with a major spruce-up in the spring and fall.
Members of our board of directors and library staff hosted the spring workshop for the mountain area North Carolina Friends of the Library. Cal Shepherd, the N. C. State Librarian spoke at our meeting. We received great reviews from participants. We continue to engage with other community activities. Look for us on the square during Pet Celebration.
All this is made possible by the members and volunteers of the Friends of the Moss Memorial Library. Without them, our many accomplishments would not be possible. Your support and hard work are essential for the future, to keep our library a relevant part of our community.
A special thank you to our county commissioners, the Town of Hayesville and the Fred A. Moss Charity Trust for their support of the Moss Memorial Library.
If you are not a Friend of the Moss Memorial Library, I want to encourage you to join us in supporting this vital community resource.
Thank you,
Beverly Skinner
President, Friends of the Moss 
Memorial Public Library

They are still committing the same offenses

I see Blue Ridge Electric are still giving free services to their workers.  
At 1 p.m on Thursday, June 15 three Blue Ridge Electric pickup trucks puled into a driveway on Sawyer Cove Road  in Hayesville — three men descended with equipment in hand and  walked over to an outside shelter then brought the pickup trucks down. 
They spent an hour working there. I would like my garage electric work taken care of too but I have to pay someone. 
It really is not at all fair to all the customers who are paying high electric bills because of things like this not to mention the new building which belongs in New York because it had to keep up with Brasstown.  
Blue Ridge Electric rates are three times that of Florida Power and Light. 
They gouge us while the employees get freebies. They got caught once but have they changed — no way. 
At approximately 2:30 p.m. I witnessed a full service Blue Ridge Electric truck working on the same shelter. It was there for another two hours. I have pictures.  
This is totally wrong. If I were to ask them to work on my garage I would be slaughed at.  
This is done on company time with company equipment and manpower.   
Who pays for this? The customers who are paying way too much for poor electric service.  
They should be putting their money into upgrading the system instead of allowing freeloading by the employees and no doubt the management.
Ruth Newsome Nelson


Just now we’re worried about our fund balance? 

“Commissioners wrangle with protecting general fund balance.” Now? Is no one asking how it got to this point? Why weren’t they wrangling all along? If you read this carefully it appears that staying in office has a lot to do with it.
Yes, a sales tax increase was defeated but the reason was not mentioned in this article. If that sales tax increase had been for the purposes now being cited as reasons for property tax increases, law enforcement, etc., it probably would have passed. Now only property owners will pay for things like park mowers and law enforcement that benefit tourists as well.
A relatively new courthouse is already in need of courtroom improvements? Seriously?
This whole property tax, property appraisals and millage rates thing needs to be looked at. Taxing property at 2010 values for eight years while property values tanked was a boon for the county and commissioners who could claim that they didn’t raise taxes for that period, or did they anyway? Now that property values are going up again look out, the tax man cometh. We can expect an effort to change to shorter periods between adjustments now that a lower appraisal appears likely if economic predictions prove correct.
It seems that there is too often talk about raising taxes and not enough talk about managing what was and remains. Based on what I read it appears that there is an enormous effort to find wants disguised as needs to justify increases. This makes even honest efforts suspicious. Shame on those who do this.
Roy Hall

Health care act will hurt senior citizens more than others

Care Act or Trumpcare, which was passed by the House of Representatives to replace the Patient and Affordable Care Act, Obamacare, in May 2017, will have a major impact on seniors in north Georgia, particularly those who are not yet eligible for Medicare.    Seniors here are among the 1,117,129 retirees in the state and the 1,714,145 social security beneficiaries. Of those receiving social security, more than 50 percent of recipients rely on this for more than 50 percent of their income. This means that a sizable proportion of their income is devoted to health care, especially since those in the south suffer from poorer health than the rest of the country.
One of the many troublesome aspects of the bill is that it increases premiums for seniors based on age and preexisting conditions. The AHCA will return to the way insurance was prior to the ACA, in which seniors found it difficult or impossible to obtain affordable coverage due to insurance companies being free to set rates based on an individual’s age, gender, preexisting condition and other factors. 
This affects not only those seeking to buy coverage but those who have employer coverage because companies are free to charge them the same rates. Forty-six percent of Georgians (4.6 million) have employer based coverage.
The law will increase premiums due rating age higher, up to five times as high as they are now.  
Thus, a 55-year old Georgian earning $25,000 annually could see her premium increase by as much as $7,457.  A 64-year old Georgian earning this same amount, could see his premium increase by as much a $12,493.
The fact that 40 percent of adults ages 50 to 64 have a preexisting condition will mean all seniors will experience dramatic increases in their insurance. 
Preexisting conditions include everything from diabetes to obesity and an estimated 1.8 million have pre-existing conditions.
The law creates age-adjusted tax credits for adults age 60 and over, $4,000, but they are inadequate to deal with the expenses that may be incurred due to cancer and other serious or chronic conditions. Naturally, low income seniors may not be able to afford to spend this amount on health care to receive the credit.
The AHCA also reduces benefits and removes the caps that were placed on how much consumers can be required to pay out of pocket for deductibles, co-pays and coinsurance every year under the ACA.
 If any single state weakens its essential health benefits requirements, it could affect large employer plans in every state. In Georgia, 500,000 have coverage through the ACA and stand to lose health care, 24 million nationally.  It also reduces funding for Medicare, Medicaid including long term care.
The House passed the bill without input from hospitals, doctors, seniors, the uninsured citizens, governors and others who will be affected and the Senate is following suit. The president commended the House on its passage. 
For more information on its impact, contact AARP.
Mary Lightner

Reader shares prose, ‘Today was Mine’ and I enjoy them

Last night was good to me and so is today. My dreams must have been pleasant, as I was not disturbed in spirit when I awoke.
Awakening early to the enthusiastic song of a Carolina wren, I rush to my window to see what the day had to bring. 
His bubbling song welcomes this day and I feel it will be mine, and mine alone.
I spy a spider’s web that was carefully spun during the night holding heavy beads of dew. It catches the morning’s sun reflecting rainbow colors, and I know that only I will see and enjoy its beauty.
Lazily, I watch for hours while many varieties of butterflies sip sweet nectar from the butterfly bushes in my garden, their hunger being filled.  Now I know why I planted those colorful bushes there.
Being thrilled at the sight of a male cardinal gently coaxing his young from the limbs of a crab apple tree onto those of a dogwood to offer a morning’s catch, makes me smile with satisfaction. He helps share the load of bringing thin morsels to his hungry family.
Watching young wild rabbits frolicking through the newly planted rock garden and never disturbing a flower causes me to gaze in wonder.
I hear the shouting and laughter of children on the playground at the little country school and I am reminded of my days of youth and it fills me with nostalgia which makes me want to cry because of lost youth.
Thunderous sounds of the rushing stream turn my thoughts to the many days of rain that we’ve had and I am grateful for the warm sunshine which will make more flowers bloom.
With the earth washed new, I take a slow walk down the narrow winding road to view the distant mountains at dusk. 
The flutelike song of the wood thrush washes over me and I stop to listen in amazement.
Too soon my day is ending and with the shadows of the evening gently closing around me, it causes me to pause and reflect on how fast time is passing and it makes me know — we are here but only for a season to enjoy life at its fullest — and I will.
Anne Crisp Hoell

Appreciation given for plants, ongoing beautification projects

Thank you to the businesses and individuals responsible for this season’s plants on the square. Friends of Historic Hayesville volunteers Sherry Coffey, Linda Davis, Roni Davis, Janice Harwood, Paula Walters, Shirley and Martin Kamar did a great job arranging planters around the gazebo and spent a day “slinging dirt” to get the season underway. Those contributing to this year’s project were Farm Bureau, Lewis Nursery, Lowe’s, Ingles, Gary and Deborah Nichols, Clay County Community Revitalization Association, Master Gardeners and Town of Hayesville.
Sheriff Vic Davis continues to support appearance of our square with the inmate work crew providing overall maintenance and keeping the grass mowed. 
This year they cleaned and painted the gazebo which was a 1988 community project by the Clay County Lions Club. 
The Lions are also replacing small corbels missing around the gazebo roof line.
Beautification and activities in our square are good examples of community groups, businesses and volunteers working together with common goals to bring new vitality to downtown Hayesville.

Sandy Zimmerman Small Town/Historic Hayesville, Inc.








Clay County Progress

Mailing Address: PO Box 483, Hayesville, NC 28904
Physical Address: 43 Main Street, Hayesville, NC 28904
Phone: 828-389-8431
Fax: 828-389-9997