2014 Rewind

Published 2:10 pm Friday, January 2, 2015

A third major highway project is on tap locally.

At a public hearing June 9 at Hertford County High School, North Carolina Department of Transportation officials formally unveiled plans to widen (to four lanes) eight miles of NC 11 / US 13 from just south of the NC 561 intersection near the Ahoskie Inn to just south of the US 13 / US 158 / NC 45 intersection at Winton.

That project, with construction slated to begin as early as 2016, will tie into a pair of ongoing road improvement efforts – the widening of US 158 from the east end of the Murfreesboro Bypass to Winton, and four-laning US 13 / US 158 from Winton to Tar Heel Barbecue in Gates County.

It was revealed at the public hearing that the project is slated to occur in two stages: Section A (the old “11-and-11” intersection, which will be re-opened with either an overpass or via a Superstreet design) – right-of-way acquisition scheduled for the fall of 2015 with construction getting underway one year later; and Section B (the remainder of the project) – right-of-way acquisition in the spring of 2017 and construction cranking up in 2019.

Local citizens used the public hearing to view large-scale maps of the project, of which there are currently four alternative routes

Ruppe sworn in as

Woodland Police Chief

John Ruppe admits he is “a small town guy.”

If that’s the case then he’ll fall in love with Woodland.

Ruppe, a native of Spindale (population of just over 4,000) in Rutherford County, took the oath of office on June 19 as the new Police Chief in the Town of Woodland.

The 25-year law enforcement veteran begins his duties immediately. He replaces former Chief Jesse Stevens Jr. who resigned in November of last year.

Ruppe worked to finish his four-year degree in Criminal Justice and Criminology at the University of Mt. Olive while balancing those studies around his job at Wayne Memorial Hospital.

Ruppe also holds an Advanced Law Enforcement Certificate (earned in 2005), giving him an opportunity to become an instructor in firearms, rapid deployment and other in-service training.

Ruppe began his law enforcement career as a deputy with the Rutherford County Sheriff’s Office. He has served as a training officer with the North Carolina Division of Prisons, and Police Chief in the small towns of Lawndale (Cleveland County) and Pinetops (Edgecombe County).

Prior to accepting the job in Woodland, Ruppe held the rank of Sergeant and Training Office with the Police Department serving Wayne Memorial Hospital in Goldsboro, and Reserve Training Officer with the Sharpsburg Police Department.

Ruppe is married and the father of two sons. He is a member of the Masons (York and Scottish Rite) and a member of the Shrine Club.