Johnston County

News Briefs: Feb. 26

New middle school gets principal

Kerri Evans has been named principal of Swift Creek Elementary School, an under-construction school in the Cleveland community. She has been principal of Riverwood Middle School in Clayton since 2014.

Evans came to Johnston County in 2013, service as assistant principal at Riverwood Middle for one year before becoming principal.

Before becoming to Johnston, Evans was a teacher, assistant principal and principal in Overland Park, Kan. She also taught for three years in Nebraska.

Evans earned her bachelor’s degree in education from the University of Nebraska. She holds a master’s degree in education administration from the University of Missouri at Kansas City and a doctorate in education from Baker University in Kansas.

Bruce Bunn, a longtime principal in Johnston County, has been named interim principal at Riverwood Middle.

Pipeline foes will meet March 2

Some Johnston County residents have formed a group to oppose the proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline.

The group, No Pipeline Johnston County, will hold its next meeting at 5:30 p.m. Thursday, March 2, at the Public Library of Johnston County and Smithfield, 305 E. Market St., Smithfield.

To learn more, call Francine Stephenson at 919-389-4044 or H.M. Johnson at 919-820-0598.

Temporary change coming to Johnston West water

Staring Feb. 27, Johnston County’s water plant will temporarily use chlorine only to disinfect water in the Johnston West distribution system.

The change from a chlorine-ammonia mix will affect customers in Wilson’s Mills, the Clayton area and on some private utilities. Customers who are unsure of their distribution system should check their monthly billing statement; it’s shown there.

Johnston West customers who use kidney dialysis machines should be aware that the water will contain more chlorine for about five weeks. Also, chlorine-only water can be toxic to tropical fish.

During the chlorine-only period, the county will also flush Johnston West water line. That process might result in temporary discoloration of water, but it does not affect water quality.

The county plans to return to is chlorine-ammonia mix on or about April 3.

For more information, call Johnston County Public Utilities at 919-989-5075.

Johnston automates death certificates

Johnston County’s Register of Deeds Office and Public Health Department have implemented an automated system for processing death certificates. The change is designed to get death certificates to funeral homes faster.

Here’s how the automated process works: The Health Department scans death certificates to a location on the county’s computer network. The Register of Deeds Office then opens the file folder, save the files to it computer and then prints them to be recorded in their its software.

Craig Olive announced this exciting news on Wednesday, February 1st, 2017. Olive stated, “While we are waiting for the NC Vital Records to implement their electronic death certificate system, which may take a few years,

“I saw the need to help funeral home personnel to get their death certificates faster, which in turns helps out the families they serve,” said Craig Oliver, registrar of deeds. “When the funeral home personnel walk in the door at the Register of Deeds Office, they can pick up the certificates instead of having to wait for them to be processed, printed and certified.”

Jobless rate climbs slightly

Johnston County’s jobless rate climbed to 4.4 percent in December from 4.3 percent in March, according to the N.C. Employment Security Commission.

In December, when the county’s labor force stood at 92,124, the number of jobless Johnstonians was 4,051.

Here are the December jobless rates in neighboring counties: Harnett, 5.5 percent; Nash, 6.3; Sampson, 5.4; Wake, 4; Wayne, 5.7; and Wilson, 7.6.

Johnston commissioners to hold retreat

Johnston County Commissioners will hold their annual work session at 8:30 a.m. Friday, March 3, in the conference room at Johnston Regional Airport, 3149 Swift Creek Road, Smithfield. Topic includes finances, budget matters, debt capacity, economic development and the county’s outlook.

Small-business seminars

The Small Business Center at Johnston Community College has scheduled the following free seminars. To register, 919-209-2224 or 919-209-2015, email or go to

Tax Implications for Starting a Small Business – 1-3 p.m. Wednesday, March 1.

Federal Taxes for a Small Business – 6-9 p.m. Thursday, March 2.

The Basics of Business Banking: Getting Your Small Business Started – 6-7:30 p. m. Tuesday, March 7.

Federal Rules: Exempt vs Nonexempt – Wages and Hours– 6-8 p.m. Tuesday, March 21. A U. S. Department of Labor investigator will talk about the test that must be met for executive, administrative and professional workers to be exempt.

Beef Jerky Outlet opens in Smithfield

The Beef Jerky Outlet has opened in Suite 1066 at Carolina Premium Outlets, 1025 Outlet Center Drive, Smithfield.

This outlet offers more than 100 varieties of jerky available. That includes exotic meats like kangaroo, alligator, venison and elk and specialty flavors such as moonshine and cajun. Gourmet snacks, popcorn, candy, jellies, jams, sauces, spices and rubs are also available.

“We are really excited about bringing this store to the area,” said said Sasi Taravath, who owns the outlet with his wife, Sarah. “It is such a unique shopping experience, where you get to try it before you buy it. We can’t wait to share our love of jerky with everyone.”