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Board of Elections photograph.

Back row: Jason Roberts (D) and Elvira Mebane (D); Front row: Shawnee Bigelow (R), Secretary; Jamie Cox (D), Chair; and Clare Brennan (R).

Elections Board sworn in

Orange County's new five-person Board of Elections was sworn in on Tuesday, April 9, and held its first meeting.

Jamie Cox was appointed chair by Gov. Roy Cooper, who appoints the chair for all 100 county boards of elections.

The other members of the board--two Democrats and two Republicans--are appointed by the State Board of Elections as submitted by county party chairs. All members serve two-year terms.

After being administered the oath of office by Mark Kleinschmidt, Orange County Clerk of Superior Court, the Board organized and unanimously elected Shawnee Bigelow as Secretary to the Board.

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Help end homelessness in Orange County

Join us for Homelessness 101 and Homelessness 201, presented by the Orange County Partnership to End Homelessness, to learn more. Both presentations will be 3:30-5 p.m. in the theater at the Seymour Center, 2551 Homestead Rd in Chapel Hill.

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Orange County Animal Services to host Spay-Neuter Day

Orange County Animal Services is working to combat pet overpopulation by hosting another “Spay Neuter Day.”The event will take place on Wednesday, May 15, 2019. The purpose is to raise awareness and help to eliminate the need for euthanasia as a means of population control.

For the event, Animal Services has partnered with Spay Neuter Assistance Program of North Carolina (SNAP-NC) to offer no-cost spay and neuter surgeries to pets of households that receive services from the Orange County Department of Social Services or who qualify by their combined income.

Thanks to a substantial grant from the Margo T. Petrie Foundation, Animal Services is continuing to expand this Spay and Neuter Program to include more households in Orange County than ever before. Another initiative that helps to fund spay and neuter programs in our state is the Animal Lovers’ "I Care" license plate program. $20 from each plate goes directly toward supporting sterilization procedure reimbursements and educational initiatives. More information about this program can be found at

“Animal Services hopes events such as this, along with other longer-term programs developed by this department, will increase the number of pets that are spayed and neutered in Orange County, and in turn help to eliminate the ongoing problem of pet overpopulation we face as a community,” said Bob Marotto, director of Animal Services.

Qualifying Orange County residents must sign up by May 1, 2019. To register or determine if you qualify, please call Cooper Hatch at 919.932.4965.

Clinic for agriculture pond owners set for May 18

Durham & Orange Soil and Water Conservation Districts are partnering to host a Pond Clinic for agriculture pond owners on Saturday, May 18 at Blackwood Farm Park (4215 NC 86, Hillsborough, NC 27572). The day kicks off with a catch and release fishing tournament starting at 7:30 a.m.  Trainings on topics such as pond maintenance, wildlife management and invasive weeds will be offered. We are also bringing back the popular shock boat.

All participants will be treated to a free fish fry for lunchthanks to our many sponsors. Please register by May 10.
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Previous SHARP award winners

Orange County Department on Aging accepting nominations for 2019 Direct Care Worker Awards

Orange County Department on Aging and the community group, Senior Health Advocacy and Resource Partners of Orange County (SHARP), will host the fifth annual SHARP Direct Care Worker Awards.

Nominations will be accepted from Feb. 15 – April 15. A recognition ceremony will be held for award winners on Thursday, May 9.

This event honors Direct Care Workers (nurse aides, personal care aides, companion caregivers, etc.) who affect their clients’ lives on a daily basis and make a difference in the Orange County community. Awards will be presented in the following categories: Client Impact, Longevity, Leadership, Going the Extra Mile, and Rising Star. One person will be chosen as the “Direct Care Worker of the Year.”

To be eligible, direct care workers must have served clients in Orange County within the past year. Each person may be nominated in two categories. Nominees must have provided direct care to clients and have at least six consecutive months of service in the past year.

For more information about the awards and to nominate a direct care worker, please complete the online nomination form. Please call Durham SWCD at 919-560-0558 or Orange SWCD at 919-245-2750 for more information.
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