Shared by IRPO–NCDOT Highway Division 13 Wants Small, Disadvantaged Businesses to Compete For Transportation Contracts

RALEIGH – The N.C. Department of Transportation is encouraging disadvantaged businesses to compete for state transportation contracts.

Starting in June, NCDOT’s Division of Highways, in partnership with its Office of Civil Rights, will host in-person outreach events in all 14 highway divisions to educate Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) owners about doing business with the NCDOT. Disadvantaged Business Enterprises include small, minority-owned, and women-owned businesses.
“Our agency advertises and awards numerous contracts for projects big and small each year, but often many of these businesses may not be aware of how to work with our agency,” said state Transportation Secretary Eric Boyette. “Each project is an opportunity to encourage small and disadvantaged business participation and to provide those businesses access to compete on NCDOT contracts.”

NCDOT awards contracts in many areas, including mowing, litter pickup, landscaping, snow and ice removal, traffic control, painting, striping, and road construction.  

During the outreach events, highway division staff will be on hand to discuss the types of contracts, advertisements for upcoming projects, and letting and award processes.  

Isothermal RPO’s counties are in two different highway divisions. If you are in McDowell or Rutherford County, the outreach event for Division 13 will be held from 10 a.m.-noon June 19 at the following location:
Highway Division 13 Office
19 Tech Drive
Asheville, N.C.

NCDOT is requesting that DBEs RSVP if they would like to attend the event.  To RSVP for the Division 13 event, contact Brandon Merithew at bwmerithew@ncdot.gov or (828)250-3000.

If you are in Polk County, the outreach event for Division 14 will be held from 10 a.m.-noon June 26 at the following location:
Highway Division 14 Office
220 Windy Gap Road
Franklin, N.C.

NCDOT is requesting that DBEs RSVP if they would like to attend the event. To RSVP for the Division 14 event, contact Wesley Grindstaff at wtgrindstaff@ncdot.gov or (828)586-2142.

For more information, visit the NCDOT webpage devoted to this initiative, www.ncdot.gov/highwaysdbe. You can also watch a video about contract opportunities and what event attendees will learn at https://youtu.be/fajlwy6Hhdl.

Shared by IRPO– N.C. Transit Agencies Have Helped More Than 8,500 People Get COVID-19 Vaccines

But funds are still available for people needing vaccine travel assistance

RALEIGH – Since vaccine rollouts began, North Carolina transit systems have taken more than 8,500 residents to vaccine appointments, thanks to a state-administered program that helped transit services pay for people needing transportation to get a COVID-19 vaccine.

But many more people can and should still take advantage of the program because funding and resources are still available, say officials with the two agencies administering the federally funded program – the N.C. Department of Transportation and the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services. 

“The good news is this program has helped thousands of people get the vaccine who might not have ordinarily gotten it,” said state Transportation Secretary Eric Boyette. “But we still have resources available for many more people to get the vaccine. Transportation should never be a barrier to prevent someone from receiving the vaccine.”     

Since January, NCDOT and NCDHHS have been administering $2.5 million in Coronavirus Relief Funding to local transit agencies in every county. The funds are being used to offset the operating costs associated with transit rides to and from vaccination sites for people who are receiving or assisting someone in receiving the COVID-19 vaccine.

To date, 82 transit agencies have reported using the federal funds to take people to and from vaccine sites in North Carolina. Those agencies have traveled more than 100,000 miles to take people to vaccine appointments.

People who need assistance accessing a vaccine site should contact their local transit agency. All North Carolina transit agencies and contact information for each are on the NCDOT website.

For more information about COVID-19 vaccines in North Carolina, visit YourSpotYourShot.nc.gov or call the state’s COVID-19 Vaccine Help Center at 888-675-4567.

Copyright N.C. Department of Transportation
1503 Mail Service Center, Raleigh, NC 27699 | (919) 707-2660 

Shared by IRPO–Litter Sweep Team Finds Lost Wallet

Wallet lost in Rutherford County returned to rightful owner

BOSTIC – N.C. Department of Transportation crews find all sorts of odd objects while picking up litter.

Sometimes, they find something very valuable.

Rutherford County Bridge Maintenance employee Brian Lowrey found something that holds money and is priceless to Elizabeth Willard while participating in NCDOT’s Spring Litter Sweep.

He found her wallet.

Willard lost the pink wallet, decorated with a sunglasses-wearing pineapple, about two months ago. On Friday, Lowery saw it sticking out amongst the aluminum cans, glass bottles, plastic bags and other rubbish beside Pearidge Road. 

He opened it and saw Willard’s identification along with a phone number. Later that day, Lowery drove to Willard’s workplace and hand-delivered the missing wallet to its rightful owner.  Litter Sweep is NCDOT’s biannual statewide roadside litter removal initiative. NCDOT crews and North Carolina residents across the state participate in local efforts to clean up our roadways. The spring event runs through April 24. Learn more about how you can get involved.

Shared by IRPO–Highway Dedication Ceremony Honors Former Lt. Governor Dalton

Stretch of U.S. 74 named in honor of Walter H. Dalton

RALEIGH – Leaders from the N.C. Department of Transportation and members of the Rutherford County Board of Commissioners today honored a former lieutenant governor with a road naming in the town where he grew up.

Walter Dalton, who served as North Carolina’s lieutenant governor from 2009-2013, now has a 5.8-mile stretch of U.S. 74 from U.S. 221 to the Polk County line named for him.

“This is my name on this sign,” Dalton said, “but there are hundreds, thousands of names that belong there.”

NCDOT Board Member William “Billy” Clark emceed the ceremony at Kiwanis Park in Rutherfordton on Monday featuring remarks from Rutherford County Commissioners.

“Walter, we thank you for your service to our community, our county and our state,” Rutherford County Commission chairman Bryan King said during his remarks. “You have spent countless hours on behalf of the citizens of Rutherford County. We thank you.”

Dalton was born in Rutherford County in 1949, earned his bachelor’s degree in Business from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, his juris doctorate from UNC School of Law and was a U.S. District Court clerk before entering private practice.

He held a North Carolina senate seat for six consecutive terms and was elected North Carolina’s 33rd Lieutenant Governor in 2008. Following his elected career, Dalton poured his time and effort into higher education, specifically as the fifth president of Isothermal Community College, to help provide educational opportunities for all.

Dalton has been a major proponent and advocate of expanding U.S. 221 to four lanes — first from the South Carolina line to U.S. 74 and the new bypass in development now. He played an instrumental role in switching the name of the U.S. 74-A corridor from a number and a letter to College Avenue in order to increase awareness of Isothermal Community College and the growth along this corridor. Dalton is also involved in helping U.S. 74 become an interstate route.

The NCDOT Board of Transportation approved a resolution dedicating the highway in honor of Dalton in March. The process for dedicating the highway included resolutions of support from the town of Rutherfordton, the Rutherford County Board of Commissioners, a character certification and three letters of recommendation.

King, vice chairman Alan Toney, plus commissioners Michael Benfeld, David Hunt, Greg Loveland, former commissioner Eddie Holland and former law partner Elizabeth Miller each delivered remarks on Monday.

Clark invited Dalton and his wife, Lucille, daughter Elizabeth and son Brian to help unveil replica signs printed by NCDOT. Dalton concluded the celebration with a few words of his own.

“When I campaigned, I used to say everybody in my district wants the same thing whether they’re republicans or democrats,” Dalton said. “I hope that this is some affirmation for the people I thanked earlier, that we did some things to help some people.”

Shared by IRPO–More Than 3 Million Pounds of Roadside Litter Collected This Year

RALEIGH – As part of its litter removal efforts, N.C. Department of Transportation crews, contractors and volunteers have now collected more than 3 million pounds of litter from roadsides this year.  
“This is great progress towards making North Carolina cleaner and safer,” said state Transportation Secretary Eric Boyette. “But the real challenge will be sustaining these litter-free roadways. We must all work towards stopping litter at its source.”

NCDOT reports that the agency and its partners have removed 3.1 million pounds of litter since Jan. 1. 

North Carolinians who wish to help keep roads clean can volunteer for the upcoming Spring Litter Sweep from April 10-24.  

NCDOT’s litter management programs are multifaceted. The department makes use of state-owned forces and contract services statewide. NCDOT’s Sponsor-A-Highway Program allows businesses, organizations and individuals to sponsor litter removal along roadsides. NCDOT is also proud to partner with the more than 120,000 participants in the Adopt-A-Highway Program, where volunteers pledge to clean a section of our highways at least four times a year. 

Litter is unsightly, costs millions of dollars to clean up, and can hurt the environment, tourism, and the state’s quality of life.  

Everyone should do their part by: 

  • Securing their loads before driving. Unsecured trash can fly from a vehicle and end up as roadside litter.  
  • Holding onto trash until it can be disposed of properly. Keep a litter bag in your vehicle so you can properly dispose of trash later.  
  • Recycling when possible. Recycling protects the environment, saves landfill space and keeps the community clean.  


Shared by IRPO–Luke Combs Joins the Fight Against Litter

ALEIGH – Multi-Platinum country music artist and North Carolina native Luke Combs calls upon North Carolinians to keep the state beautiful and keep litter off roadways. 

“We are from one of the most beautiful places in the world, and we need to do our part to help keep it that way,” Combs says in the PSA he recorded for NCDOT’s use.  

“We appreciate Luke volunteering his time to help spread the word,” said state Transportation Secretary Eric Boyette. “Litter is an issue that affects everyone, and we need everyone’s help to stop it.” 

To view the two PSAs from Luke Combs, click here and here. To view NCDOT’s other litter prevention PSAs, visit NCDOT’s PSA Resources webpage

North Carolinians who wish to help keep roads clean can volunteer for the upcoming Spring Litter Sweep from April 10-24. Volunteers will be provided with trash bags, gloves and safety vests from local NCDOT County Maintenance Yard offices. 
Everyone can do their part by: 

  • Securing their loads before driving. Unsecured trash can fly from a vehicle and end up as roadside litter.  
  • Holding onto trash until it can be disposed of properly. Keep a litter bag in your vehicle so you can properly dispose of trash later.  
  • Recycling when possible. Recycling protects the environment, saves landfill space and keeps the community clean.