June 19, 2014
Supporters Urged to Contact Key Senators Now
Effort to Bring WNC School of Science and Math to Morganton
at a Critical Point In General Assembly's Budget Process
With a decision on the state's proposed budget looming, supporters of 
the Western North Carolina School of Science and Math are being 
asked to contact several key legislators without delay.

Rountree Collett is one of many community, business, elected and 
educational leaders involved in the effort to locate a second campus of 
this school in Morganton. "We started out with companion bills, initiated 
by our Burke County delegation and cosponsored by other supportive western 
regional representatives, that provided funding for the advance planning 
for the project," Collett said. "Unfortunately, the initial Senate budget 
stripped out the funding but left in place language generally favorable to 
the idea of our goal. We were initially worried about the same thing 
happening in the House, but we succeeded in getting amended language into 
the final House budget providing the funding for advanced planning."

Now the House and Senate versions of the budget are headed to a conference 
committee where differences between the two versions -- including the 
funding provisions around the WNCSSM -- will be worked out. Collett said the 
goal of supporters is to keep the House's language in the final budget 
bill. "Especially now, we need to reinforce to legislators that advanced 
planning for this project is extremely important to fund, as an educational 
initiative for our state and an economic development boost to our region," he emphasized.

If you or your company supports this regional effort, please consider calling, e-mailing or writing the following key Senators right away and encouraging them to work with Senator Warren Daniel to keep the House version of the western NCSSM language (specifying Morganton location and funding) in the final budget bill.

Senator Harry Brown: 
                                                     NC Senate 
                                                    300 N. Salisbury Street, Room 300-B 
                                                    Raleigh, NC 27603-5925 
                                                    (Jones and Onslow Counties)
Senator Ralph Apodaca: 
                                                    NC Senate 
                                                    16 W. Jones Street, Room 2010 
                                                    Raleigh, NC 27601-2808 
                                                    (Buncombe, Henderson, Transylvania Counties)

Senator Neal Hunt:  
                                                    NC Senate 
                                                    300 N. Salisbury Street, Room 309 
                                                    Raleigh, NC 27603-5925 
                                                    (Wake County)

Senator Dan Soucek: 
                                                    NC Senate 
                                                    300 N. Salisbury Street - Room 310 
                                                    Raleigh, NC 27603-5925 
                                                    (Alleghany, Ashe, Avery, Caldwell and Watauga)

Senator Austin Allran: 
                                                   NC Senate 
                                                   300 N. Salisbury Street - Room 625 
                                                   Raleigh, NC 27603-5925 
                                                   (Alexander and Catawba Counties)

Senator Ralph Hise: 
                                                    NC Senate 
                                                   16 W. Jones Street - Room 1026 
                                                   Raleigh, NC 27601-2808 
                                                   (Madison, McDowell, Mitchell, Polk, Rutherford, and 
                                                   Yancey Counties)
You're Invited to These Special Events Sponsored by Chamber Members 
Field Day at Fort San Juan and the Berry Archaeological Site - Saturday, June 21
Warren Wilson College, Western Piedmont Community College and the Exploring Joara Foundation invite the public to a field day event at the Berry Archaeological Site in Morganton this Saturday, June 21, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Visitors will have the chance to see a portion of the newly discovered moat, which was found during last summer's excavations. 
Field day activities at the Berry Site will include archaeology demonstrations, displays of Native American artifacts recovered from the site, hands-on learning activities and pottery demonstrations. Admission is free and parking is available on-site, though $5 donations per car are encouraged. For more information about the event and to learn more about the many other year-round events offered by the Exploring Joara Foundation, visit or call 828-439-2463.
Preservation in Progress Party at the Avery-Summerset House 
Saturday, June 21
Historic Burke Foundation will be your host this Saturday from 6:30 - 9 pm at the historic Avery-Summerset House, currently undergoing restoration and the home of David Stevenson and Michael Smith. This unique event will include a presentation by Jennifer Cathey, a Restoration Specialist with with the State Historic Preservation Office. Dine on a bountiful picnic, as you enjoy music by the Dave Reep Quartet. Tickets are $50 per person, with proceeds going to Historic Burke Foundation for the maintenance of the McDowell House and operating expenses. There will be plenty of parking. For tickets and information call the Foundation at (828) 437-4104 or visit
Concert at the Courthouse - Sunday, June 22
Come out of the heat and enjoy a concert in the Old Burke County Courthouse, featuring cellist Thomas Maternik and violinist Kimberly Ray performing such works as the Bach Suite No. 1, the Cassado Cello Sonata, Astor Piazzolla Bordel 1900 and more. An international performer and teacher, Maternik is a graduate of the Royal College of Music in London. He also founded the Maternick Foundation, a charitable organization bringing music and opera to terminally ill children. Ray has performed with the Appalachian Symphony Orchestra in Beijing and is now with the Johnson City Symphony and the Paramount Chamber Players, in addition to maintaining a private studio. She is also the Coordinating Director of Chamber Music Lenoir. Suggested donation of $10 per person. The concert is free for students.  
Free Seminar: Why You Should 
Pre-plan Your Funeral: A Pre-need Workshop - Tuesday, June 24
Presented by Cornerstone Cremation - Funeral Celebrations
Tuesday, June 24 from 6:00pm-7:30pm
Dry Ponds Baptist Church
5235 Union Church Road in Granite Falls 
To reserve your place at this free and informative seminar, please call 828-638-5668  or email Refreshments will be served.
Free Seminar: The Dementia Journey - Tuesday, July 1
Presenter Teepa Snow is an advocate for those living with dementia, and she has made it her personal mission to help families and professionals Grace Ridge better understand how it feels to be living with such challenges. One of America's leading educators on dementia, she has developed a best care practice philosophy with practical techniques for a hands-on approach that supports and promotes positive relationships. This free event will be held on July 1, 2014, from 6:00-8:30 pm in the Ervin Community Room at Grace Ridge Retirement Community. 


Jolly Marks 15 Years at Burke Chamber
She's the friendly voice on the phone, the answer to member's questions, the picture of hospitality at the Chamber's offices and may be one of the few people you'll ever meet 
whose name truly reflects her personality. June 19 marks Dorothea Jolly's 15th year with the Burke County Chamber of Commerce. While she might say her job is managing operations for the Chamber, her impact on the success of the Chamber and the Visitors Center is far greater than words can express. Thanks for all you do, Dorothea!
News & Observer Highlights a "Best Kept Secret" in Burke County

From the mountains to the sea, North Carolina's attractions draw people from all over the world, but not all the places worth visiting can be found in guidebooks. This summer, The News & Observer is taking its readers to some of the best out-of-the-wayand lesser-known spots - one in each of North Carolina's 100 counties in a series called, Best-Kept Secrets. This week, the Pisgah Loop Scenic Byway is highlighted as the best kept secret of Burke County. You can find the article and photos on the N&O website:

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Richelieu Legwear Plans to Create 205 Jobs -  Governor Pat McCrory and North Carolina Commerce Secretary Sharon Decker announced this week that Richelieu Legwear International expanding its presence in Burke County through an investment of $16 million in a state-of-the-art manufacturing facility. This investment will bring Richelieu's total investment in the U.S. to $24 million. The project is expected to result in the creation of 205 new jobs in Hildebran by the end of 2018. The company acquired selected assets of International Legwear Group in Hildebran in 2011 and hired 45 members of the firm's workforce. Currently, Richelieu Legwear has its U.S.-based operations in Hildebran where it employs more than 60 people. Employees at the new facility will manufacture socks and will be supported by a long-term commitment from the company's leading customer, Walmart. This partnership will assure that significant financial investments are supported by program placement from Walmart for years to come.Compensation for the new positions will vary by job function, but the average annual salary will be $37,912 plus benefits. The average annual wage in Burke County is $32,834. The project is made possible in part by an award to Richelieu Legwear from the state Job Development Investment Grant (JDIG) program, as voted by the state Economic Investment Committee. Receipt of the award is based on proof of job creation and other performance requirements. JDIGs are awarded only to new and expanding businesses and industrial projects whose benefits exceed the costs to the state, and which would not be undertaken in North Carolina without the grant. 
For more information about Richelieu Legwear, visit



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