Up & Coming Weekly

June 22, 2021

Up and Coming Weekly is a weekly publication in Fayetteville, NC and Fort Bragg, NC area offering local news, views, arts, entertainment and community event and business information.

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WWW.UPANDCOMINGWEEKLY.COM JUNE 23-29, 2021 UCW 9 e Greek community and much of Fayetteville are mourning the loss of Rev. Chrysostom Manuel, Pastor Emeritus of Sts. Constantine and Helen Greek Orthodox Church. He died on June 11, following a period of declining health. He was 89. Manuel served the Fayetteville community for 37 years retiring as an active priest in August 2000. During his time in Fayetteville, the church sanctuary was built in 1964, with classical Byzan- tine iconography and architecture. e church was consecrated in 1984, and the education building with a library was completed in 2005. In 1964, Fr. Manuel became the first Orthodox clergyman to earn a master's degree from the Duke University Divinity School. He is survived by his wife of almost 60 years, Amphitrite Anthoula Constantelos Manuel, four children and eight grandchildren. Drugs suspected in deaths of two Fort Bragg soldiers Two 82nd Airborne Division paratroopers were found dead in a barracks room on Fort Bragg June 11. Spc. Joshua Diamond, 35, of Plymouth, Mas- sachusetts, and Pfc. Matthew Disney, 20, of Aberdeen, Maryland, are possible victims of drug overdoses. "We do have credible information that the soldiers were involved with illicit drugs," said Chris Grey, spokesman for the Army Criminal Investiga- tion Division. Diamond and Disney served as field artillery radar operators and were assigned to 2nd Battalion, 319th Airborne Field Artillery Regiment. "Our thoughts and prayers are with their loved ones and fellow paratroopers during this difficult time," said Col. Phillip J. Kiniery III, commander of the 2nd Brigade Combat Team. Both men joined the Army in 2019. Diamond was a combat veteran having deployed to Iraq in 2020. School uniforms no longer required e Cumberland County School Board has ap- proved a policy change for the 2021-2022 school year which ends a requirement in 26 schools that students wear uniforms. Families will still have the option of allowing their children to wear uniforms when they return to school in the fall. Cumberland County Schools Superintendent Dr. Marvin Connel- ly, Jr., gave the Board of Education an update on the district's school uniform requirements. He said the negative, financial impact of COVID-19 presented the need to modify school policy. Connelly said the waiver will provide sufficient time for the district to determine an appropriate path forward at each school. ere will be no consequences imp sed upon students for uniform violations; however, stu- dent dress code requirements will remain in place. According to Dr. Connelly, the administration will provide another update to the Board in the coming months. Property tax rates are not going up in the new fiscal year Fayetteville and Cumberland County property tax rates will remain as they are in the 2021-22 Fiscal Year which begins July 1. e city of Fayetteville's operating budget will be $240.3 million. "I'm very pleased that we are able to continue our high level of service to residents," Mayor Mitch Colvin said. "We've been able to focus on key strategic areas as set forth by Council." e property tax rate will remain at $49.95 cents per $100 of assessed valua- tion. Cumberland County's property tax rate will also remain the same at $79.9 cents per $100 of property value. County Manager Amy Cannon's $502 million budget plan includes more than $340 million for the county's general fund and $83 million for the school system. Most school funding is provided by the state. Cannon said she had expected to see a revenue drop over the course of the last year, but that didn't hap- pen. In FY22, sales tax revenue is expected to go up by close to $10 million. e city and county will re- ceive combined stimulus funding of more than $113 million through the American Rescue Plan. Fan donations needed for giveaway program e Department of Social Services is seeking box fans to distribute to eligible citizens this summer through the Fan Giveaway Program. e program provides relief to residents who do not have access to air conditioning during hot summer months. DSS is accepting donations of new box fans from civic organizations, churches, businesses and individuals in the community. e Social Services building is closed to the public so donors are asked to make an appointment to drop off fans. Call 910-677-2536 for more information. Citizens eligible for the Fan Giveaway Program are those individuals whose income falls below 200% of the current poverty level or who have a family member in the home under the age of 2, over the age of 60, or with a heat sensitive medical condi- tion. Citizens are asked to call 910-677-2388 or 910-677-2389 to speak with a social worker and have an assessment completed. Eligible citizens will be given a date, time and location for fan pick up. DSS is located at 1225 Ramsey St. Pet licenses no longer required July 1 Cumberland County residents who own pets will no longer be required to pay a pet privilege license effective July 1. e change is part of the revised Ani- mal Ordinance approved June 7 by the Cumberland County Board of Commissioners at their regular meeting. Commissioners adopted the new ordinance after the proposal was presented at the May 13 Agenda Session meeting by Animal Services Director Elaine Smith. Dropping the pet license fee was one of several changes in the new ordinance. Smith told commissioners the pet license program was no longer economically practical due to a decline in fees collected. "e revenue declined rapidly and significantly over the last five or six years, and it has reached the point where the revenue generated is not making up for the amount of labor, the cost of mailing, postage and fees we pay to our database company," Smith said. "It has a very shrinking benefit over returns." Most counties in North Carolina do not have pet licenses, Smith said, and the Animal Services De- partment found the licensing requirement to be a disincentive for people getting their pets vaccinated against rabies. Current Cumberland County regulations require a pet privilege license for every dog and cat four months of age and older. e annual fee is $7 per animal if the pet is spayed/neutered, or $25 if the pet is not spayed/neutered. Licenses were available at the Animal Services office or through most veteri- nary clinics. Community mourns death of prominent clergyman by JEFF THOMPSON NEWS DIGEST JEFF THOMPSON, Reporter. COMMENTS? Editor@upandcom- ingweekly.com. 910-484-6200. Rev. Chrysostom Manuel

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