Skip to content

MONDAY FORUM: “Defending Our Water: What You Need to Know Before You Vote”


The following is a press release detailing tomorrow night’s water forum:

“Defending Our Water: What You Need to Know Before You Vote”
Monday, October 22
6:30-8:00 p.m.
Jubilee Community Church, 46 Wall St.
Free & open to the public

People who live in the city limits of Asheville will be asked on the Nov. ballot: “Shall the City of Asheville undertake the sale or lease of its water treatment and water distribution system?” A growing list of organizations and businesses is endorsing a VOTE of NO on this nonbinding referendum! Defeating the referendum will give our city officials proof that the residents of Asheville don’t want to lose control of their water system.

The Asheville City Council advanced the referendum after a proposal was made by the NC State legislature which would remove control of the water system from the city of Asheville and turn it over to the Metropolitan Sewerage District (MSD), which is administered by an unelected regional board.

Guest speakers include:

– City Councilwoman Esther Manheimer, who will explain the wording and purpose of the referendum and the status of ongoing studies by local governments;

– Renée Maas & Mary Grant of the consumer organization Food & Water Watch, on the pitfalls of reduced local control of water systems in other areas across the country;

– Local activist Barry Summers, who will present a brief historical overview on the issue and update us on where we go from here.

Of all the utility services, water is the one we simply can’t live without – that’s why it’s urgent that decisions about water be transparent, local, and with plenty of opportunities for the public to participate. Let’s send a message loud and clear that our community’s drinking water is too important for decisions to be made behind closed doors in Raleigh while local residents’ voices are ignored!

A Q&A session will follow the presentation. The forum is free and open to the public and is co-sponsored by Mountain Voices Alliance, Clean Water for NC, Food & Water Watch, WNC Alliance and WENOCA Sierra Club.

If you’d like to volunteer to help with community outreach, the upcoming forum, or other efforts, contact or call 828-255-8537 or, 251-1291.  Please forward this to others you think might be interested!



Early Voting Locations and Voting Roster

Early voting has started!



From October 18 – November 3, voters in Buncombe County can vote at any of 18 different conveniently located sites. Voters may cast their ballots Monday – Friday from 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.; Saturday October 20 & 27 from 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.; Saturday November 3 from 8:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. at all of the 18 sites. On Sunday October 21 and 28 from 1:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. four locations will be open (North Asheville Library, Black Mountain Library, South Buncombe Library & West Asheville Library). The 18 sites are:

  • North Asheville Library – 1030 Merrimon Ave., Asheville
  • Buncombe County Training Center,  199 College
  • Black Mountain Library – 105 N. Dougherty St., Black Mountain
  • South Buncombe Library – 260 Overlook Rd., Asheville
  • West Asheville Library – 942 Haywood Rd., Asheville
  • Fairview Library – 1 Taylor Rd, Asheville
  • Biltmore Square Mall – 800 Brevard Rd, Asheville
  • Kenilworth Presbyterian Church – 123 Kenilworth Rd, Asheville
  • Lutheran Church of the Nativity – 2425 Hendersonville Rd., Arden
  • UNC-A Justice Center – 200 Wellness Way, Asheville
  • Weaverville Town Hall – 30 S. Main St., Weaverville
  • Leicester Branch Library – 1561 Alexander Rd, Leicester
  • Swannanoa Fire Dept. – Bee Tree Substation – 510 Bee Tree Rd, Swannanoa
  • Avery’s Creek Community Center – 899 S.E. Glenn Bridge Rd, Arden
  • Asheville Mall – 3 S. Tunnel Rd., Asheville
  • Jupiter Fire Dept. – 331 Jupiter Rd., Weaverville
  • Upper Hominy Fire & Rescue – 1795 Pisgah Hwy., Candler
  • New Morgan Hill Baptist Church – 370 Lake Dr., Candler.

Voters throughout the County can vote at ANY of these sites. The ballot for each voter’s district will be available for them. If you would like to review your ballot before visiting the voting site, go to

Early Voting Starts Thursday: Moffitt Recap (Send him packing!)

Early voting starts tomorrow, and I don’t think I’ve ever seen such a stark contrast in candidates’ worldviews since I cast my first vote 26 years ago.  Tim Moffitt, who is running against Jane Whilden in District 116 in Buncombe County represents the very worst that extremist right-wing politics has to offer. Click the blue link below to read his answers to a recent candidate questionnaire and you will see the bleak future he has in mind for our state. Devoid of compassion, cynical … paving the way to corporate fascism:

“Rep” Tim Moffitt’s Civitas candidate survey provides deep insights into the agenda and ideology of his radical right intentions. Western North Carolina does NOT want, need, or deserve this type of representation. No thank you Art Pope.

Next up … a very good retrospective from Scrutiny Hooligans blog (This is Part 1) documenting Tim Moffitt’s shenanigans as a state legislator:

Early voting starts today: Thursday.

It is a very tight race between Jane Whilden and Timmy Moffitt.  It will be a tight race between Susan Wilson and her opponent, a man who shares similar Tea Bag views as Moffitt, in Buncombe’s District 115.  Please get all your friends to vote.  Vote early. We can win if we turn out the vote. Click on the link below to download a PDF of the Buncombe County 2012 Democratic Voting Roster (this includes non-partisan races). Share will all your friends!!!!

Buncombe County Democratic Voter Guide 2012

Click here to download a one-page copy of the information below and take it with you to the polls.  These are the people to vote for if you care about education, a strong economy, affordable healthcare, women’s rights, the environment, fairness, responsibility, science, puppy dogs and apple pie. Early voting starts Oct. 18.  Click the icon above to find your precinct number. The list comes from the Buncombe County Democratic Party.  If you want to vote a straight Democratic ticket, you will still have to vote for Obama separately as well as non-partisan races. I will put the non-partisan races at the end of this list:

President–  Barack Obama

NOTE:  “In North Carolina, voting ‘straight party’ (using the term from an NC ballot) does not include a vote for the President and Vice President of the United States. North Carolina voters therefore must make separate selections for the President/Vice President and the straight-party option.”

Buncombe County Commission/Deeds

County Commission Chair —David Gantt

County Commission, District 1 (State House 114)
Holly Jones and Brownie Newman

County Commission, District 2 (State House 115)
Ellen Frost  and Carol Peterson

County Commission, District 3 (State House 116)
Terry Van Duyn and Michelle Pace Wood

Register of Deeds  Drew Reisinger

North Carolina General Assembly

State House District 114 Susan Fisher
State House District 115
Susan E. Wilson
State House District 116 Jane Whilden

State Senate District 49 Martin Nesbitt


U.S. House District 10Patsy Keever
U.S. House District 11
Hayden Rogers
(Even if you’re progressive, vote Rogers! The alternative is super-scary.)

State Offices

GovernorWalter Dalton
Lt. GovernorLinda Coleman
N.C. Attorney GeneralRoy Cooper
Secretary Of StateElaine Marshall
State TreasurerJanet Cowell
N.C. Insurance CommissionerWayne Goodwin
N.C. State SuperintendentJune Atkinson
N.C. State AuditorBeth Wood
Labor CommissionerJohn C. Brooks
Agriculture CommissionerWalter Smith


Buncombe School Board
(Your other choices are aligned with the Tea Bag party.

Dusty Pless, At-large Representative
Chip Craig, Owen District Representative
Steve Sizemore, Roberson Dristrict Representative
Ann Franklin, North Buncombe District Representative

For more info on these school board members please visit this website.

Judicial Races

North Carolina Supreme CourtJudge Sam J. Ervin IV
Court of Appeals (Thigpen seat)Judge Cressie Thigpen
Court of Appeals (McGee seat)Judge Linda M. McGee
Court of Appeals (Bryant seat)Judge Wanda Bryant

Soil and Water Conservation Supervisor– James H. Coman

CITY VOTERS, Referendum: Vote NO to state takeover of our water system!

Full letter to editor: Mountain Xpress

Hello! I’m just back from vacation. I picked up the Mountain Xpress this evening and discovered that they left out a very important part of the letter to the editor that I had submitted to them before I left. I’ve highlighted the missing portion of my letter below:

To the Editor;

In 2010, a Raleigh Tea Bag tycoon named Art Pope funded campaigns across the state through direct donations and through several political action committees (PACs). Pope targeted even the most moderate state assembly Democrats, as detailed in a New Yorker investigation. As a result, the statehouse became not just right-wing, but radically right-wing. Radical right-wingers want to privatize or dismantle all parts of government that do not serve business. For them, democracy, financial and environmental regulation, the ability to sue for negligence, etc., are more than a bother – they cut into profit.

In contrast, the politicians I’m volunteering for this year (Jane Whilden, Susan Wilson, Susan Fisher, and Patsy Keever) believe government should exist to protect and empower everyone equally. They know that we all pool our taxes to build and operate roads, schools, research centers, parks, etc., for the benefit of all, including business. Government has to regulate responsibly in order to protect the public from unscrupulous polluters, cheaters, and predators.

All this brings me to Buncombe state representative Tim Moffitt. In 2010, Pope’s outfit targeted Moffitt’s opponent, Jane Whilden, sending out a vicious negative mailers. Moffitt received $16,000 in direct Pope family contributions as well as thousands in corporate PAC money. Moffitt won. In Raleigh, he propelled the radical agenda of gutting public education, women’s rights, and laws that protect our environment.

With the help of Henderson County politicos, Moffitt launched a ruthless campaign against his Asheville neighbors to take the City’s water system and airport without compensation. He also changed our county elections in Raleigh without any public process by having the state add two new seats to the County Commission and separating the county into districts. Despite the fact that commissioners represent all of Buncombe, voters can only vote for two candidates in their district plus the Chair. It’s a ploy to get two Republicans on the board, and it may not even work. Either way, taxpayers now have to fund two extra commissioner salaries thanks to Moffitt’s little game.

Moffitt brags about cutting taxes, but what he’s talking about is letting the ¾-cent sales tax expire. That failed to make a dent in my purse, but it did cripple the state’s budget by $1.3 billion. Moffitt also passed a tax break meant to help small businesses – with a loophole that went to rich business owners. That cost the state $336 million in lost revenue. In the meantime, Buncombe County schools lost $622 million from their discretionary budget this year; the PAC money is back; and voters know what they’re getting with Moffitt.

“Defend Our Water” Signs Now Available

Our city and county depend upon each other for our prosperity. We’re friends and neighbors. How do you treat a neighbor? With respect, appreciation, kindness, and care.

A good example of someone who puts this philosophy into action is David Gantt. He’s running for Chair of County Commission. He has a big heart and uses the Golden Rule as a guide.  By contrast, David’s opponent, a windbag named J.B. Howard took a recent opportunity to insult the entire population of Asheville with this nugget (reported in this week’s Mountain Xpress):   “The culture in Asheville loves the idea of that greenway. Now, the hard-working people out here don’t do the things they do down on Lexington Avenue at 11 o’clock on Friday and Saturday nights; they work.”

Newsflash to Mr. Howard: The people of the city work every bit as hard as our neighbors in the county. Lexington Avenue is a thriving, lovely part of Asheville — with incredible shops and restaurants that draw people from all over the country.

I read Howard’s quote and couldn’t help but think of Tim Moffitt and the hostility he has shown toward his neighbors in the city. His pettiness goes far beyond verbal insults. The man who claims to oppose involuntary annexation has launched a state takeover of our water system and, despite his claims, has put it at risk for privatization and increased rates. He’s wasted untold taxpayer money for no good reason creating this “solution in search of a problem.” Then, after our City Council decided to put this issue to a voter referendum on the November ballot, Moffitt posted legalese on his blog that any reasonable person would read as a threat to dissolve the city.

What kind of public official does something like that to his neighbors? The answer: One unqualified for public office.

The ratepayers of Asheville will vote in November on Moffitt’s hostile water annexation. Despite the fact that the referendum is non-binding, it is still extremely important to let Moffitt and his Raleigh goon squad know that the people of Asheville — his neighbors — value democracy and do not stand for a state takeover of our water system. I am optimistic that District 116 will send Moffitt packing in November. The word is getting out about the money behind him and the damage he’s done to education, women’s rights, and the environment. People do not like his shenanigans one bit.

In the meantime, I invite you to pick up one of the “Defend Our Water” signs and get them in your yard immediately. They are available at one of the following locations (calling in advance is a good idea). Small donations are welcome:

Downtown:  Clean Water of North Carolina, 29 1/2 Page Ave — (828) 251-1291

North Asheville:  Asheville Brewers Supply, 712 Merrimon Ave(828) 285-0515

East Asheville:  Democratic Hdq, 951 Old Fairview Rd

West Asheville:  West Village Market, 771 Haywood Rd., (828) 225-4949

South Asheville:  Sam Speciale, 14 Trevors Trail (near Brevard Rd) 242-1794

Talk to everyone you know in Buncombe: Vote Jane Whilden, Susan Fisher, and Susan Wilson

WLOS asks Moffitt: Do you benefit from tax loophole you created?

WLOS Report on Tim Moffitt – September 27, 2012 from Progress NC Action on Vimeo.