• Compare health insurance plans during open enrollment

    By Wayne Goodwin

    Guest Columnist

    I am reminding North Carolinians who purchase individual health insurance coverage to take advantage of the open enrollment period to compare plans and choose coverage.

    The open enrollment period for 2016 coverage began Nov. 1 and will end Jan. 31, 2016. In order to have coverage effective Jan. 1, 2016, you must enroll by Dec. 15.

  • The importance of a single vote

    As much as I generally despise covering elections and politics as a whole, I can’t deny how fundamentally important the democratic process is to our community.

  • Will Medicaid reform work for you?

    Dr. Mike Walden

    Guest Columnist

    Medicaid is the public program assisting limited-income households with their health care expenditures. Begun in 1965, the program is jointly funded by federal and state governments. In North Carolina, the funding split is 65 percent federal money and 35 percent state money.

  • NCDOT reminds motorists to keep alert for deer

    By Kevin Lacy

    Guest Columnist

    As the temperature starts dropping and leaves start falling, another sign of the changing season is more deer along North Carolina roadways, and in turn a greater chance of a collision with a deer.

    Over the last three years (between 2012 and 2014), nearly half of the 58,372 animal-related crashes in the state took place in October through December. About 90 percent of those involved deer.

  • Lots of reasons to give and ways to show thanks
  • Medicare annual election period runs through Dec. 7

    By Wayne Goodwin

    Guest Columnist

    Your health needs change from year to year, and the benefits and costs of your health plan may change each year, too. That’s why it’s important to evaluate your Medicare choices every year. The Annual Election Period is the one time of year when all people with Medicare can change their Medicare health plan and prescription drug coverage for 2016.

    Take advantage of the Annual Election Period and you may be able to save money, improve your coverage or both.

  • AAA Carolinas urges buyers to beware of flood-damaged vehicles

    By Greg Pence

    Guest Columnist


    As cleanup from the devastating floods throughout the Carolinas continues, there’s a new hazard to consider for used car buyers. Buyers need to know how to avoid purchasing a vehicle that may look great, but could be secretly suffering from flood damage.

  • Help trick-or-treaters stay safe

    By Roy Cooper

    Guest Columnist

    Halloween is an exciting time for many children and families. Planning trick-or-treat routes and checking costumes and candy carefully are the keys to celebrating Halloween safely.

    It’s also important for homeowners to take some simple steps to help keep trick-or-treaters safe.

    Tips for trick-or-treaters

    Stick to neighborhoods children know well and visit only well-lit houses.

  • Some suggestions for aiding flood recovery efforts

    Trying to keep tabs on my friends back in the Palmetto State was a challenge as Hurricane Joaquin brushed the Carolinas’ coast, preceding an unusual weather phenomenon akin to aiming a giant fire hose across South Carolina and along its North Carolina state line Oct. 2-5. Even though you can count me among the folks who were stuck inside their homes for a few days, I think it’s safe to say the situation in Brunswick County was nowhere near as dire as it was, and has been, for our neighbors to the south where the death toll stands at 19.

  • Can we resolve our tax issues?

    By Dr. Mike Walden

    Guset Columnist

    Taxes are always part of discussions about government and public policy, and taxes were clearly a hot topic in the recent session of the North Carolina General Assembly. Debates occurred about taxing services, lowering income tax rates, implementing incentives for business and energy expenditures, and dividing public revenues between urban and rural counties. Legislation was passed for some of these items, but I can assure you there will be more discussion and debate in future sessions.