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Archive for March, 2012

Prison breaks ground on long-awaited chapel

Wednesday, March 14th, 2012

PENDER COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — Nearly 800 inmates call the Pender Correctional Institution home. Although it’s just a temporary stop for most, prison leaders and the community have come together to build what they hope will make a lasting impression.

“God couldn’t get our attention out there, so what did he do? He sat us down, and this is a very good place that you can get to know him,” inmate James Hill said. “If you didn’t do what he had you do out there, then in here, he can talk to you because you can’t run.”

Hill was convicted of first degree murder and sentenced in 1999 to life without parole. He says he knows he was disobedient to God and is paying the consequences, but he’s making the best of it. He says he knows he’s at Pender Correctional Institution for a reason: to encourage the other inmates.

He’s been working as the chapel clerk at the prison since 2001. He is excited ground has been broken on the project five years in the making.

“We don’t want them leaving out of here the same way they came in,” chaplain Jimmy Joseph said. “If they go out the way they came in, they are going to be a problem. They are going to be doing what they were doing before, and so we are trying to change their hearts.”

Right now, the prison’s religious center is housed in a 20′ by 24′ classroom, but in about six months, it’ll move to its new home: a building that’s more than 4,000 square feet.

“The community has done this,” the prison’s assistant superintendent Bryan Wells. “This didn’t come from taxpayer money. It came from taxpayers, but they donated. They gave their time, they gave their money, they gave their services.”

Hill said, “They’re like God. They look past our faults and see our real needs. We all need a new beginning in life.”

Seventy-four area churches and 88 individuals across the country donated to the chapel effort. The North Carolina Baptist Men are providing all labor free of charge.

More: continued here

Verizon announces 4G LTE network expanding

Wednesday, March 14th, 2012

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — A faster wireless service is coming to more people in the local area.

Verizon announced today its large-scale 4G network called Long Term Evolution or LTE is expanding Thursday to cover several cities including Calabash, Castle Hayne, Whiteville, Lake Waccamaw, Sandy Creek, Sunset Beach, Whiteville, U.S. Hwy 74 (between Leland and Whiteville) and Bolton.

Verizon officials say the network allows folks to stream video, play multiplayer games, and face-to-face chat at speeds almost ten times as fast as they can on their 3G devices.

The company launched the 4G service in April 2011 in our area to cover nearly two dozen cities.

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ACLU-NC criticizes New Hanover Commissioners for rejecting reproductive health grant for women

Wednesday, March 14th, 2012

RALEIGH, NC (NEWS RELEASE FROM THE ACLU) -– The American Civil Liberties Union of North Carolina today criticized the New Hanover County Board of Commissioners for voting Monday to reject a state grant that would have funded reproductive health care and family planning services for women.

“It is truly shameful that the New Hanover County commissioners refused nearly $9,000 in state funds that could have provided essential reproductive health care services to women through doctors’ visits, medication, and comprehensive family planning,” said Jennifer Rudinger, executive director of the ACLU of North Carolina. “Most American women use contraception at some point in our lives in order to plan responsibly, and for many of us, contraception can also aid with other medical conditions,” Rudinger continued. “Unfortunately, many low-income women and young women do not have reliable access to contraception. The state funds the County rejected could have provided these women with medical care they cannot otherwise afford or access. The state offered this money to the County without any strings attached and without any increased burden on taxpayers. The commissioners’ decision to reject this funding is appalling.

“Had the five men on the Board bothered to consult any women or reproductive health experts beforehand, perhaps they would have seen the error of their ways. Indeed, Commissioner Jonathan Barfield told WWAY-TV that after talking to his wife about the issue, he realized he was wrong to vote against accepting the funds. It is not the duty of elected officials to judge anyone’s lifestyle or medical needs. Rather, they should seek to better the welfare of the people they were elected to serve. In this case, they failed miserably,” Rudinger concluded.

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Hydrant repair to close part of North 23rd Street

Wednesday, March 14th, 2012

Area is between Market and Chestnut streets

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New Hanover health department leadership role in state initiative

Wednesday, March 14th, 2012

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