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Wilmington, NC – Forecasters predict Ernesto could dump up to six inches of rain along the South Carolina, North Carolina border leaving officials in South Carolina preparing for the storm.

Ernesto is expected to make landfall late Thursday afternoon near the South Carolina, North Carolina border.

In South Carolina, the border county of Horry County, spokesperson Lisa Bourcier says emergency officials are also worried about severe flooding.

Wilmington, NC – The builder of the City View development planned for the west bank of the Cape Fear River was put on hold after making a special request Wednesday night that would have moved the project closer to becoming a reality.

Developer John Evans made a request of the Metropolitan Planning Organization to upgrade the status of USS North Carolina Road and Battleship Road from local road to connector road status so he could build the proposed condo-retail development.

Wilmington, NC – Brunswick County officials say the completed stretch I- 140 will cut evacuation time for some county residents.

Brunswick County officials say the I-140 Wilmington Bypass links an improved Carolina Beach Road to Interstate 40, giving county residents a faster evacuation route.

Brunswick County Emergency Management Director Randy Thompson says sending residents through New Hanover county will work because of new regional evacuation plans.

Wilmington, NC – As forecasters keep an eye on Tropical Storm Ernesto,Governor Mike Easley warns residents to prepare for the hurricane season.

Easley urged families to have a plan for evacuation and communication. As for the state's emergency communication system, called VIPER, a study this year by the First Response Coalition raised concerns about VIPER's effectiveness since many municipalities have opted out of it.

Governor Easley says program is expanding and will be effective this hurricane season.

Biloxi, MS – Behind the wheel of his SUV, Bill Raymond navigates through what's left of Biloxi's historic district, describing entire neighborhoods of old homes that have been reduced to fields of weeds under the city's remaining live oaks. Raymond is the city's Historical Administrator. Not an easy job in a town where he estimates 75% of the land-marked buildings are damaged or gone.

Wilmington, NC – The university will use the money to address domestic violence against students, creating a model program other schools may someday adopt.

Rebecca Caldwell, the university's director of substance abuse and violence prevention, describes domestic violence on campus as a sleeping tiger,' saying that when she looked for a recommended university program on which to base UNCW's she couldn't find any.

Wilmington, NC – Two block from the Gulf of Mexico, dozens of volunteers pile into First United Methodist Church. Wilmington resident Murrie Lee is one of the volunteers, he's on his 6th mission trip to Biloxi.

Like most people, Lee watched Hurricane Katrina devastate the region on his TV set, and sitting in a quiet corner of the church sanctuary, he tells of how he felt an immediate need to be useful.

Wilmington, NC – The study found nearly 7,000 feet of sewer line that need to be replaced or repaired in the next five years. The assessment also stressed the need to replace air valves, improve two pumping stations on the line, and modify the corrosion control system.

J. Chris Ford, an engineer who presented study results to the City council, says the types of problems facing the northeast interceptor are not uncommon in other systems of its size.

Wilmington, NC – Before Hurricane Katrina, New Orleans was one of the most haunted cities in the country. Shawna Keeney checks in with some regular ghost chasers who are monitoring the haunted Big Easy.

Shawna Kenney is a freelance writer and producer who is currently a graduate student in UNCW's Creative Writing program.

Wilmington, NC – The Wilmington Fire Department has the equipment and manpower, but lacks training and support staff. That's the finding of an outside assessment commissioned by the city.

Recommendations include boosting the number of training captains from one to four or five, and hiring an I-T person. It also recommends fixing safety issues at some of the older firehouses.

Wilmington Mayor Bill Saffo says city staff will comb through the 207-page report and prioritize recommendation.

Wilmington, NC – Thursday was the official grand opening of Wilmington's first off-leash dog park.

A private citizen group teamed up with the city to make the two acre stretch of fenced in park a reality at Empie Park. Small dogs and big dogs each have their own areas to run free, and there are water facilities and seating.

The city says Empie Park's new off-leash dog park, and Kure Beach, are now the only two places in the immediate area where dogs can romp free from their masters.

Wilmington, NC – Neighborhood complaints tipped off police to keep an eye on a Castle Street clothing store called "X-Slave Fashions."

Police say that after witnessing what they thought was a drug deal in front of the store, officers arrested the owner and three others.

Wilmington Police Chief Ralph Evangelous credits old-fashioned, boots-on-the-street policing for the bust.

"It's like the door-to-door salesmen. If you keep banging on doors, you're going to make a sale. Well, it's the same thing out there. You've just got to keep hammering away at it."

Wilmington, NC – Robeson County is gearing up to launch the first 211 information number east of I-95.

Robeson County commissioners signed off on the phone line this week. The number will deliver information on such topics as where to get flu shots, severe weather and social services.

United Way of Robeson County Director Sandra Oliver says there is a strong need for the 211 line.

Wilmington, NC – Wal-Mart says a stoplight put the breaks on a proposed store for Market Street in Ogden.

The 200,000 square foot store was planned for a stretch of Market Street near Dunbar Road in Ogden.

Wal-Mart spokesperson Tara Stewart tells WHQR that a stoplight couldn't be secured for the area, that along with issues surrounding Wilmington's moratorium on sewer hookups forced the company to abandon the project.

Wilmington, NC – The National Weather Service estimates four to five inches of rain fell on parts New Hanover county Tuesday, flooding intersections and shorting out traffic lights.

A blocked storm drain closed the 3rd Street on-ramp to the Cape Fear Memorial Bridge for several hours, backing up traffic down 3rd Street and forcing drivers like Larry Dew of Harvest Table Ministries into stop-and-go traffic.

Wilmington, NC – Tuesday's heavy rains washed out the Beach Blast and Beach Sweep planned for UNCW students.

The university says weather reports of afternoon storms were convincing enough to cancel the event, which was planned for Wrightsville Beach near Ocean Pier.

Instead, students were treated to a showing of the cult classic Ferris Bueller's Day Off at UNCW's new movie theater.

Wilmington, NC – Wilmington Mayor Bill Saffo delivered an update Tuesday on the convention center planned for downtown Wilmington.

Saffo says a development agreement will be made within the next two months.

Opponents of the convention center say there will not be enough business to support it, leaving the city stuck with the bills. But Saffo says having the project paid for with an occupancy tax is better than using general tax money.

Wilmington, NC –

By Scott Malone

BOSTON (Reuters) - Pentair Inc. on Tuesday cut its earnings outlook for the third and fourth quarters, sending its shares down as much as 10 percent, as weakness in the housing market took a toll on its swimming pool equipment business.

Wilmington, NC – Nearly 90% of the surveyed firefighters rated morale at the department as 'Poor,' 'Very Poor,' or 'Terrible,' and more than half said they've considered leaving.

The Wilmington Professional Firefighters Association, which represents a majority of the city's firefighters, contracted with an outside group for the survey as part of their ongoing effort to lobby for changes in the department. The group presented their findings at the City Council meeting Tuesday night.

123 of the surveys sent out were returned, a response rate of 62%.

Wilmington, NC – The City of Wilmington is asking S & C Communications to pay for the cost of fixing damage to a sewer pipe last month.

A letter from the Assistant City Attorney requests $196,605.01.

Nearly five million gallons of wastewater spilled after an S & C crew punctured the River Road sewage pipe back in July.

At first the company said the city failed to mark the pipe, but the city has said it has photos that it marked the site.

Wilmington, NC – UNCW's Assistant Men's Basketball coach has resigned after a little more than three months on the job.

Chuck Benson says he's leaving for an assistant coaching job at Carson-Newman College in Jefferson, Tennessee.

Back in April, Benson was the first hire by Seahawks head coach Benny Moss.

Wilmington, NC – Governor Mike Easley says he will sign legislation removing specific goals for the North Carolina Department of Transportation when it comes to contracting work out to minority and women-owned businesses.

The North Carolina Black Leadership Caucus is urging Easley to veto the bill, which removes the 10% and 5% goals for contracting work out to minority and women-own businesses.

NCBLC Director N. Carnell Robinson says eliminating apsirational goals for the DOT will send a message to other state agencies.

Wilmington, NC – Governor Mike Easley signed the landfill moratorium into law in a room at Cape Fear Community College overlooking Brunswick county, site of one of the state's most contentious waste disposal battles.

The proposed Hugo Neu landfill in Navassa is one of five applications statewide frozen by the law.

Easley says while some of the projects may have merit, the state needs more time to develop a coherent policy on proposed landfills.

Wilmington, NC – Passengers flying out of Wilmington International Airport should expect heightened security due to an alleged terrorist plot in London to blow up U.S.-bound planes.

Although Wilmington is not a national hub, airport director Jon Rosborough says increased security precautions are underway at ILM.

He says cars are prohibited from lingering at the curb for pick-ups and drop offs, and beefed up security inside the airport may slow down the boarding process.

Wilmington, NC – The University of North Carolina, Wilmington launched a new program delivering graduate science courses for middle and high school science teachers.

It's the first program in the state focused on giving science teachers a boost in knowledge.

The courses are open to current teachers, professionals from the science field moving into teaching jobs, and graduate students working toward a teaching degree.

ICW, New Hanover County – The radio on detective Morrissette's console blares out the normal chaos of law enforcement - attempted break-ins, car crashes, and fights. But those troubles are a world away from the sparking waves of Mott's Channel off Wrightsville beach. Where Morrissette's attention is currently on a pair of dolphins cresting in the shallows.

Wilmington, NC – An intense thunderstorm roared through southeastern North Carolina late Tuesday afternoon, leaving flooded streets, power outages, and fallen trees in its path.

Wind gusts reached 49 mph, and more than two inches of rain pelted rush hour traffic as the quick, hard-hitting system rolled through Wilmington.

Progress Energy says 6,700 homes were without power, but crews had most of the lights back on within 45 minutes.

Wilmington, NC – The Department of Health and Human Services has refused an application to turn Southport's Fort Johnston into a homeless shelter.

The decision released Monday blocks Fellowship Deliverance Ministries of Georgia from taking over the waterfront property.

An HHS spokesperson says it declined the application because the group failed to explain how it would staff the shelter, provide services and manage the property while out of state.

Wilmington, NC – Work will soon begin to replace the control system on the Cape Fear Memorial Bridge.

The state has now awarded a $5.4 million dollar contract on work that will begin later this month, and wrap up 18 months from now.

The control system lifts the bridge for river traffic.

Lannie Wilson of the North Carolina Board of Transportation says this is the first electrical upgrade for the 37-year-old lift span bridge.

Wilmington, NC – Wilmington's Good Shepherd Ministries says its food pantry is getting bare.

Executive Director Katrina Knight says the supply usually gets thin around October, but a growing demand along with the newly added dinner meal has caused the agency to run low earlier.

She says short supplies hit all food agencies in the summer when people are on vacation and out of their usual routines.

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