Rodney Frazier has been hired as Granville County’s new Veterans Services officer, providing consultations and assistance to approximately 5,000 local veterans.
A graduate of Carteret Community College and Liberty University – with degrees in Criminal Justice and Homeland Security – Frazier is a veteran of the United States Air Force, serving in Active Duty for five years and six years in the Active Reserves. He is a combat veteran with numerous awards and decorations, including the Air Force Commendation Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster; Air Force Achievement Medal with two Oak Leaf Clusters; Air Force Good Conduct Medal; National Defense Service Medal; the Kuwait Liberation Medal, Local Government of Kuwait; and others.
Frazier is also a Small Arms Marksman and a 1992 U.S. Air Force Honor Graduate with training in FBI Law Enforcement, Hostage Negotiation and Crisis Management. He has completed training as a U.S. Air Force Security Specialist and in the U.S. Army Combat Skills Course, as well as Basic and Advanced Tactical Operations, completing the U.S. Air Force Airman Leadership School in 1996.
Frazier’s work experience includes more than 25 years of physical, corporate, homeland security and risk management experience through the U.S. Air Force and in the private sector.
In his new role, Frazier offers assistance and resources to Granville County veterans when filing for VA claims, health care, home loans, disability compensation, education benefits and other needs. He is available by appointment by calling at 919-693-1484. He can also be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Veterans Services office is located in the Granville County Senior Center, 107 Lanier Street in Oxford. For more information about programs and services provided, visit www.granvillecounty.org.
Young library patrons will soon be able to access the latest in technology with the ‘Playaway Launchpad,’ a secure, durable and easy-to-use learning tablet created especially for children.
The ‘Playaway’ is a brand of portable media players designed by Findaway World, LLC and is the only tablet of its kind intended for library circulation. Each device includes high-quality, ad-free learning applications grouped by age, grade level, subject area and theme. Tablets are interactive and are fun to explore, with subjects ranging from math and science to language learning and critical thinking. Themed learning packs include princesses, animals, transportation, dinosaurs, space and more, with each pack preloaded to hold at least 10 apps for hours of educational play.
“The ‘Playaway Launchpad’ is a big hit with other libraries,” Granville County’s Interim Library Director Will Robinson explained. “What we are working towards is digital literacy, starting at a young age. This tablet should be very popular with our Granville County kids and families.”
Each tablet has been built to last, with tough plastic cases and an easy-to-grip rubber bumper. Content has also been designed to last for three to five years, without a constant need for updating, so that the devices can be circulated for a longer period of time. While the “Playaway checkout policy” is still being developed, Robinson says, each family who checks out a tablet will be able to keep it for one week before its expected return date, with one renewal allowed per family – due to the limited number of devices initially available.
Robinson further explains that families will appreciate the continuous play feature the tablet offers. The battery lasts for 4.5 hours, and is easily recharged through a wall charger or USB cord. It can even be charged in the car, adding more educational play time during long drives and family vacations. Children using the tablet can also continue their learning fun while the device is charging.
“We are continuing to advance our technology,” Robinson noted. “We’re not just for books and magazines any more. We know that children who use the library will grow into adults who use the library. That’s what we want to see.”
The Pew Center for Internet and American Life has done extensive research into how libraries are evolving, and how communities perceive libraries in the modern world.
“As more people pick up e-books instead of their ‘paper and glue’ predecessors, libraries are expanding to include digital
literacy as well.” said Lee Rainie, executive director of the Pew Center for Internet and American Life. “It’s not just the well-off or tech-savvy that can tap into these pathways of knowledge. What people celebrate about libraries is that they are resources everyone gets access to.”
For more information about the ‘Playaway Launchpad’ and how to reserve one for your family, as well as other products, programs and services offered by the Granville County Public Library System, contact your local library in Oxford, Creedmoor, Stovall or Berea, or visit www.granville.lib.nc.us.
The Granville County Senior Center in Oxford invites the public to their 9th Annual Holiday Bazaar on Saturday, Nov. 3 from 9:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. Enjoy festive holiday shopping with local artisans, crafters and a few direct sale vendors. Check out homemade goodies and enjoy a hot dog lunch.
Raffle tickets will be sold for a chance to win items donated by local vendors. Call the Senior Center for more information at 919-693-1930.
As a part of the partnership between Granville County Government and the Granville County United Way, two new partners have highlighted a different type of recreation at the Granville Athletic Park (the GAP). Franklin Granville Vance (FGV) Smart Start partnered with Boy Scout Troop 637 (sponsored by the Oxford United Methodist Church) to build, install, and stock two little free libraries at the GAP. Steve Sievert is the troop leader. The work to cut, paint, and assemble the libraries was performed by Chay Strother as a part of his Eagle project.
One library is located near the butterfly garden at the Belltown Road entrance to the park, and the other library is located near the playground and picnic shelter area. A variety of books will be provided for visitors to read while attending the park or to take home with them.
FGV Smart Start is asking for donations of books to keep the Little Free Libraries stocked. Call FGV at 919-433-9110 to donate. You can also take a book to exchange when you visit the little free libraries.
The partnership between Granville County and the United Way is a three-year community focus to diversify recreation at the GAP and to make the park a more inclusive space for all. The GAP is located at 4615 Belltown Road, Oxford.
The Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting has been awarded to Granville County by the Government Finance Officers Association (GFOA) of the U.S. and Canada for its comprehensive annual financial report (CAFR). The Certificate of Achievement is the highest form of recognition in the area of governmental accounting and financial reporting.
The Award of Financial Reporting Achievement was presented to the county’s Finance Department, which is led by Finance Director Steve McNally.
The CAFR is judged by an impartial panel. Criteria includes the demonstration of a constructive “spirit of disclosure” to clearly communicate the financial story, as well as efforts to motivate potential users and user groups to read the annual report.
Granville County has received this award for the past 19 consecutive years.
Granville County emergency responders have been assisting storm-ravaged North Carolina areas as recovery efforts are underway.
Deployed to Jones County was Granville County Emergency Services Director Doug Logan, who is part of the N.C Emergency Management Central Branch Overhead Incident Management Team. This task force helped coordinate the disaster response in Jones County, based in the Trenton area, where there was record flooding along the Trent River. Many residents of the county had to be rescued by fire, EMS and Sheriff’s Office personnel, Logan reported, and emergency staff members had been on duty around the clock since before the storm even made landfall, making preparations and responding to calls for assistance. The Central Branch Team was air-lifted into the area by helicopter to find the majority of Jones County cut off from surrounding areas by flood waters, without electricity or telephone service. The county water system had completely failed and the only food sources for the citizens were what little stocks they had left in pantries.
“We had assets from all over North Carolina – as well as New York, California, Vermont, Arizona -all there to assist through the National Emergency Management Assistance compact (EMAC),” Logan noted. “Additional resources arrived daily to assist in the response and relief efforts, while military air assets dropped food and water supplies to be distributed to isolated communities.”
As of Wednesday, Sept. 19, the rivers were starting to recede and approximately 60 percent of the county remained without power as water pressure made a slow and steady return. Local drinking water sources will likely remain unsafe for several weeks, due to flooded wells and contaminated water treatment plants.
“We are anticipating a need to provide intermediate and long-term sheltering, as well as disaster housing for residents who will return to their homes as the water continues to go away,” Logan reported on Wednesday. “The team is diligently trying to merge the operation into recovery instead of response.”
Logan returned home last Thursday, after being deployed for five days.
Also instrumental in the disaster relief efforts were Donnie Boyd, Fire Marshal for Granville County Emergency Services -– who played an integral role in moving equipment to impacted areas where there was the greatest need – as well as Robin Edwards and Reba Duke, who were activated through the Regional Coordination Center (RCC) in Central North Carolina. Fire Inspector Joe Seagroves aided in moving staging equipment for RCC-Central, which was set up in Butner.
Meanwhile, Trent Brummitt, Manager of the county’s 911 Emergency Call Center, along with Shift Supervisor Matt Faucette, travelled to Morehead City to provide assistance to telecommunicators there through a request more specific than a normal Telecommunicator Emergency Response Task Force (TERT) request.
On Sunday, Sept. 16, a call had been made for assistance from areas using the same Computer Aided Dispatch (CAD) system as Carteret County. With no time to train responders from out of the area on how to use their system, the goal was to have those familiar with their emergency procedures in place to offer relief. Brummitt and Faucette were quick to respond, leaving just a few hours after the request was made. Ice, coolers, water, snacks and extra cots were packed to take along with them.
According to Brummitt, first responders in that area had been working rotating 12-hour shifts, and most had not been home since before the storm.
“They were grateful we came to help,” Brummitt said, adding that the Morehead Police Department, where they were stationed, was the only building with power when they arrived.
After checking in, Brummitt and Faucette quickly went to work, manning Morehead City’s 911 system and taking emergency calls in twelve-hour shifts. By Tuesday, Brummitt said, power had been restored as shifts continued around the clock over a two-day period. The two arrived back to Granville County late Tuesday night.
The Morehead City area was pounded with more than 15 inches of rain as a result of Hurricane Florence, with severe flooding reported. Providing additional assistance in relief efforts there were telecommunicators from Richmond, Chatham and Johnson Counties, as well from the National Guard and the U.S. Coast Guard.
“We learned a lot that will help us if we ever have a situation like that here,” Brummitt said. “Seeing the effects of Hurricane Florence first hand made us realize that Granville County was very fortunate.”
Pictured are Doug Logan with the task force assigned to Jones County; and Trent Brummitt and Matt Faucette in Morehead City.
The Sunrise Forum Committee of the Granville County Chamber of Commerce, the Granville County Human Relations Commission and the League of Women Voters of Granville County will sponsor a Candidate Forum on Tuesday, Oct. 2 in the Commissioners Board Room of Oxford City Hall. The event is slated for 6 p.m., with candidate presentations to begin at 6:30 p.m. Participating candidates on the local November ballot will be allowed time for brief introductions before participating as a panel to answer prepared questions asked by a moderator. Light refreshments will be served. Oxford City Hall is located at 300 Williamsboro Street. The public is invited to attend.
Note: Candidates who have indicated they will participate in this forum, as of Oct. 1, are Darryl D. Moss, Candidate for NC House of Representatives, District 2; Larry Yarborough, represented by Jim Crawford, NC House of Representatives, District 2; C. Britt Wester, Soil and Water Conservation District Supervisor; Timothy Karan, Granville County Board of Commissioners, District 6; LaHoma Smith Romocki, Granville County Board of Commissioners, District 6; Paul Ross, NC Superior Court Judge, District 9, Seat 1; John Dunlow, NC Superior Court Judge, District 9, Seat 1; Judge Carolyn Thompson, NC Superior Court Judge, District 9, Seat 2; and Mitchell Styers, NC Superior Court Judge, District 9, Seat 2.
County Commissioners have begun tours of their districts with interested board members, staff, and community stakeholders. During the month of September, Commissioners of District 6 (Tim Karan), District 1 (Zelodis Jay), District 2 (David Smith), and District 7 (Edgar Smoak) have taken a tour bus through every nook and cranny of their sections of Granville County. Tour groups have seen visitor attractions, county and municipal infrastructure, historic sites, residential developments, major industries, and much more. Below are a few shots from each district. Visit us on Facebook @GranvilleCountyGov for more photos.
Weather conditions across the state led to some unexpected assistance in Granville County this week as a Kansas animal rescue group provided relief to the animal shelter.
In an effort to assist those impacted by Hurricane Florence, Unleashed Pet Rescue and Adoption of Mission, Kansas – with assistance from Polk County SPCA of Livingston, Texas and Paws4Life of Shreveport, Louisiana – reached out to North Carolina animal shelters who were at or near capacity, arriving with transport units to take animals back to safer areas. According to Granville County Animal Control Director Matt Katz, there was room for several more animals on the return trip. This was a welcome relief locally, as kennels were already pressed for space before the storm even made landfall on our coast.
Over the weekend, several more pets had been surrendered to the Granville County shelter and no more kennel space was available, Katz explains. When volunteer Roxanne Blackburn was contacted by Sherry Davis with the Polk County SPCA about pulling animals on their way out of North Carolina, the offer couldn’t have come at a better time.
Granville County’s Animal Shelter’s save rate is 80 to 90 percent, Katz noted, but the “tough decisions” sometimes have to be made. Not this time, however, as 26 animals were rescued.
Unleashed Pet Rescue is a licensed, nonprofit animal shelter that works to save the lives of rescued pets, pulling them to safety. The organization works to find homes for pets of all ages, health, temperaments and history, giving each animal an opportunity for a better life. During Hurricane Harvey, Unleashed Pet Rescue was an integral part of the animal rescue efforts along the Gulf Coast, as well as offering assistance during other emergencies across the nation.
Katz says that this will be the first time all year that the shelter has had this many open kennels.
“These folks also pulled dogs from Franklin and Vance Counties on their way out of the state,” Katz said. “This may lead to another avenue for placement of our dogs.”
Katz credits Roxanne Blackburn for taking the initiative and “jumping on this opportunity,” and asks anyone interested in the welfare of local animals to thank these groups for their assistance.
“We are grateful to Roxanne for all her help in this, and ask everyone to please take a moment to thank these groups on their Facebook pages. This opens up so many opportunities for us, and we couldn’t be more grateful.”