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New sheriff jousts with CIBO critics on ICE issue
Monday, 02 September 2019 17:47
By JOHN NORTH
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Recently elected Buncombe County Sheriff Quentin Miller fielded intense questions from some local business leaders on his decision for his office not to hold detainees — suspected of being illegal immigrants — upon request from the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency (aka “ICE) during the Aug. 2 meeting of the Council of Independent Business Owners at UNC Asheville’s Sherrill Center. 

Miller told the CIBO audience that he will hold detainees in cases where ICE provides a warrant, but, otherwise, the sheriff said he felt it is a violant of the 4rh Amendment to hold a suspect without a warrant.

About 60 people attended the meeting that was opened by CIBO President Buzzy Cannady III, who serves as emcee. He began the session by recognizing elected officials in attendance, including Miller, Asheville City Councilman V.J. Kapoor, Asheville Housing Authority Executive Director David Nash, Buncombe Commissioner Amanda Edwards, Buncombe District AttorneyTodd Williams and Black Mountain Town Alderman Larry Anderson.

Cannady then said Miller would be giving “a progress report on the Sheriff’s Department....”

Miller triggered some chuckles — and a smile from CIBO’s emcee —  when he began his presentation by pointedly correcting Cannady’s introduction of his unit, noting evenly, “I’m going to begin by saying that, instead of ‘Sheriff’s Department,’ it’s ‘Sheriff’s Office.’”

He then told of the Sheriff’s Office’s “efforts to lower the numbers of people who are incacerated” and that it has “added more detention officers and officers on patrol.”

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Step outside comfort zone to widen connections, UNCA chancellor urges
Monday, 02 September 2019 17:44
By JOHN NORTH
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The finale of Leadership Asheville’s Summer Buzz Breakfast series featured four guests addressing the issue of “What is our vision for a connected community?” on Aug. 14 at West Asheville’s Crowne Plaza Expo Center.

The theme of the three-month series was “How do we build a connected community?” The Aug. 14 session drew 265 people.

Opening the 75-minute session was Ed Manning, executive director of UNC Asheville’s Leadership Asheville, which bills itself as “Western North Carolina’s foremost community development organization since 1982.”

Manning noted that UNCA Chancellor Nancy J. Cable would be acting as moderator of the program.

The four participants, each of which Cable interviewed one-on-one, were Stephanie Brown, president and chief exeuctive officer of Explore Asheville; Debra Campbell, Asheville city manager; Lakesha McDay, head of community engagement and relations for Dogwood Health Trust; and Avril Pinder, Buncombe County manager.

First, though, Manning asked the attendees to use their cellphones to tell how many Buzz Breakfasts they had attended this summer.

In response, 45 percent of the attendees said they had attended one session, 33 percent had attended two and 22 percent had attended all three. (One hundred fifty-nine of the 265 attendees responded to the phone poll.)

Next, Manning said,”Today, we will be addressing what we might think possible in building a connected community... As I said before, I think Asheville and this community could be an example to the state and nation.

Prior to interviewing each of the program’s guests, Cable said, “Well, when I was first approached about serving as your host this morning, I was told they wanted a sort of ‘Johnny Carson thing.’” She then prompted laughter from the attendees when she questioned how far she could go with her “Carnac” impersonation, referring to Carson’s humorous skits as Carnac the Magnificent.

More seriously, the chancellor asserted, “Leadership means connections, noting that there is a tendency to “connect with those similar to us. But the truth is, that kind of leadership, while important, is” going out of style. “Today, we’re going to emphasize the real work of leadership…. with people who have patently different opinions than we hold.”

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