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Re: “The Durham-Orange Light Rail Now Costs More Than $3 Billion, and Durham Will Have to Pay More of It

"Even at 3.3 Billiion it's still worth it. The USA desperately needs to transition to public transportation."

A new cutaway bus cost $67,000 on average in 2007. In 2017, the number is probably closer to $100,000. (See FTA's report, "An Evaluation of the Market for
Small-to-Medium-Sized Cutaway Buses.")

Therefore, for $100 million, Durham could buy *1000* cutaway buses. Why is it worthwhile to spend more than $1 billion on light rail and commuter rail if $100 million could buy 1000 buses? Especially if those buses could be fully autonomous (computer-driven) in 10-20 years?

Doesn't it make more sense to spend $100 million for 1000 fully autonomous cutaway buses than to spend more than $1 billion (more than 10 times as much) for a light rail line that is much more limited in capability?

Posted by Mark Bahner on 04/26/2017 at 5:33 PM

Re: “Durham Wants to Help Homeowners Whose Tax Bills Have Gone Up Because of Revitalization. But Should They Have to Pay the City Back If They Move?

Not ideal but it's a start. My concern with this plan is that it in many ways forces people to move within 4 years to pay back the loan and that just delays the process and kicks the problem down the road. Durham is great for its diversity, ethnically and socioeconomically.

This plan does nothing to solve that particular problem.

This plan also assumes that property values will continue to increase and we won't see a crash. While we all hope this doesn't happen, banking on it is unwise, especially in areas where property values are increasing so rapidly that people need the assistance.

Posted by torifile on 04/26/2017 at 2:39 PM

Re: “Sticker Shock: Why Does the Durham-Orange Light Rail Transit Project Suddenly Cost $3.3 Billion?

I'd like this light rail, however, it's still way too easy to drive in the area. Supply and demand dictate that this light rail is not needed, especially for that price. Wowsers, 3.3 billion. That's more than $7,000 for every man, woman, and child in Orange and Durham Counties.

2 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by J Preston Evanwood on 04/26/2017 at 1:11 PM

Re: “North Carolina Is the Last State to Automatically Prosecute Sixteen- and Seventeen-Year-Olds as Adults

16 and 17 year olds should not be charged as adults except for the most heinous of crimes and certainly never for non-violent crimes be they felonies or misdemeanors. Even then there should be a probable cause hearing before a judge to determine if such a procedure is appropriate.

Posted by jokr8790 on 04/26/2017 at 9:02 AM

Re: “The Durham-Orange Light Rail Now Costs More Than $3 Billion, and Durham Will Have to Pay More of It

Even at 3.3 Billiion it's still worth it. The USA desperately needs to transition to public transportation. Public transportation and its peripheral industries will create jobs that will get reduce unemployment and generate more money and tax revenue into the economy. It will also reduce our dependence on fossil fuels. Even if it is used by low income people and students, there are many more of them than rich people.

0 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by jokr8790 on 04/26/2017 at 8:59 AM

Re: “Love Wins Community Center Staff Quits, Alleging Financial Mismanagement by Executive Director

If the allegations are true, particularly the ones about the embezzlement of withholding taxes, an independent audit by the IRS and SBI is necessary. This sounds like serious financial mismanagement.

Posted by jokr8790 on 04/26/2017 at 8:51 AM

Re: “Durham Commissioners Approve Light Rail Plans, Cost-Share Agreement

I attended the meeting, and wanted to speak out against the light rail plans, but since I did not know how/where to sign up as a member of the public, I wasn't recognized. My only consolation is my near-certainty that the Durham Orange Light Rail Project will never be built.

There's a revolution in transportation that is coming in the next 5-20 years, which is autonomous (computer-driven) vehicle technology. Transportation will be provided as a service, rather than people owning their vehicles. Autonomous technology will provide door-to-door transport with travel times that are less than or equal to automobiles today, and at much lower cost than automobiles, and with freedom from the hassles of driving. Parking will also no longer be necessary, and congestion will be greatly reduced.

Light rail, with its higher cost and rigid fixed routes and times, simply can't compete with a fleet of autonomous vehicles. Durham's projected cost of over $1 billion would fund *2000* autonomous full-size buses (at $500,000 each). However, an even better use of the $1 billion would be to simply pay the transportation expenses of lower-income people who use the autonomous vehicle fleets operated by...Uber? Google? Hertz? Ford? (we'll know in the next 5-20 years).

0 likes, 5 dislikes
Posted by Mark Bahner on 04/25/2017 at 5:42 PM

Re: “Is Richard Burr Tanking the Trump-Russia Investigation?

Please sign my petition to have an independent commission investigate Russian meddling in our 2016 presidential election! http://petitions.moveon.org/sign/trumprussia-investigation?source=c.em&r_by=18274863

4 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Elizabeth Miller on 04/25/2017 at 1:48 PM

Re: “North Carolina's Unemployment Insurance System Is a Disaster

NC DES employees and jobforce employees do absolutely nothing for the people on and applying for unemployment
They should all be payed off or pay cut. They all need to be retrained.

Posted by Jamie NOrris on 04/25/2017 at 9:10 AM

Re: “Streaming Didn't Kill the Music Industry. Major Labels Did.

Time was when you went to a show and got a t-shirt that you could wear around and brag about having been at the show. These days you can order one online, along with other merch, without ever having to go to a show. A lot of fans might be able to afford a shirt but not the ticket.

I think a lot (most?) fans want to support the artists and they *think* they are supporting them with platforms like Spotify - most fans don't have any idea how little money is going to the artists from streaming services.

Posted by Markus Alexander on 04/23/2017 at 2:27 PM

Re: “HB 500 Sponsor: Wholesalers “Made Clear They Weren’t Going to Discuss” Raising Barrel Cap

So, in other words, regulations that protect drinking water, air, healthcare, and working class citizens are bad, but regulations that protect corporate monopolies from competition are okay. #RepublicanLogic

Posted by StarSword on 04/22/2017 at 8:56 PM

Re: “Cherry Vanilla's New Wave Adventures in the Sixties and Seventies Flavor Jaybird O'Berski's Jacques Brel Revue

Cherry has a fantastic personality, and so it is that all her interviews are a joy for me to read!

Siobhan

Posted by Siobhan DiNardo on 04/22/2017 at 12:03 AM

Re: “The Durham-Orange Light Rail Now Costs More Than $3 Billion, and Durham Will Have to Pay More of It

Hopefully, light rail will die before very much is spent on it. As noted by gmbmnc, computer-driven vehicles will completely eliminate any need for light rail. Computer-driven vehicles will deliver door-to-door service (without any need for parking). And that door-to-door service will be much more rapid and inexpensive than light rail can hope for.

3 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by Mark Bahner on 04/19/2017 at 6:52 PM

Re: “Poisoning our pets

A friend of mine who has had a rescue and doggie day care/board for years, said she uses Sevin Dust on her property. She says that is how she controls fleas and other pest. She told me to get some, she even gave me the money to get it. My dogs are on flea preventive 90% of the year, but the last few years, it seems to be a come and go, as far as my yard goes and my dogs. Last year, I didn't have much of a problem controlling the fleas. The year before, I could not control them at all. My dogs were infested with them, despite the preventive. Most states had a mild winter, so I figured they may be more of a problem. But it seemed to just developed over the weekend. My dogs were miserable. No one slept in my house this past Monday night, April 17th. So I called my friend. She said to being them out when I got off work and we'd bath them and she'd give them each a Capstar to help to start getting rid of them. Then she said she used the Seresta collars on her dogs, in rescue and personal dogs and she used Sevin dust on her property. She said it was safe. Over the years, several people have made the same recommendation. But I have yet to use it. My dogs are my kids and the only family I have. The three are seniors, 10 and 12 years old. I'd hate to lose either of them because of difference of opinion on the use of Sevin Dust in my yard. I lost a German Shepherd mix to cancer and bloat 3 years ago. I'm ready to lose one of mine I have. So where would be the best place to go for the truth about Sevin Dust. I remember my uncles using it on their crops, corn, tobacco when I was a kid. But that was a whole lot of years ago.

0 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Barbara Duke on 04/19/2017 at 1:56 PM

Re: “The Neuse River Is Sick, and Advocates Blame the Pork and Poultry Industries

SO, reward capitalists for being stupid enough to put facilities in flood plains?
JFC, who comes up with this crap?

And the cesspools AKA 'lagoons' don't have to flood anywhere to ruin the Neuse. The N makes it to the river with no flooding, just evaporation.

Now that Smithfield is owned by foreign entities is time to shut them down. Ruin your own damn country in order to eat shitty pork.

2 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by dodahman 1 on 04/19/2017 at 11:40 AM

Re: “Awesome-Sounding Film and Food Hub Going into a Building on West Chapel Hill Street

"The Cookerys Nick Johnson and his wife bought and renovated..."
I suggest editing Mrs. Nick Jonson's to Rochelle Johnson.

12 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by dawnbland on 04/19/2017 at 10:50 AM

Re: “Seeing Green: What North Carolina Is Missing By Skipping Out on Legal Weed

It would be nice if I could read the article but enlarging the image makes it worse. Cannot see it clearly at all. Very poor quality.

3 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Jamie Hopkins on 04/19/2017 at 9:40 AM

Re: “Streaming Didn't Kill the Music Industry. Major Labels Did.

Thanks for writing, Chrisso. Who's to say how long it takes to write a great song? Lots of great songs were written really quickly, lots of them took a long time. Keith Richards came up with the riff for "Satisfaction" when he was asleep. But recording costs have gone down, not stayed the same. As for merchandise, the article didn't say streaming invented new income in the form of merchandise, but rather that it helps build fan bases so that artists can make money on merchandise and tours. And it does.

2 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by David Klein on 04/18/2017 at 11:30 AM

Re: “Streaming Didn't Kill the Music Industry. Major Labels Did.

Years into this debate and we're still seeing the same mistruths being pedalled.
1) Yes, the cost of CD media came down, but the cost of musicians, studios, the time it takes to write a great song remained the same or increased. The cost of a music industry CD was 99% the cost of musicians, recording, man hours work, not the cost of the 0.50p CD carrier.
2) Musicians have always sold merchandise at shows. Streaming hasn't invented new income from selling t-shirts at your show. That income already existed. Streaming stripped out the income from record sales. So most musicians now earn much less, not more or even the same.
It's no surprise the musicians you example all have day job or live day to day on little income.
Is that a good thing for the music scene and music lovers worldwide? No.

1 like, 1 dislike
Posted by Chrisso Johnson on 04/18/2017 at 9:41 AM

Re: “How Weather, Chance, and War Brought Twenty Thousand Persecuted Vietnamese to North Carolina

Truly the work of our Gracious God. Those poor people. I can't imagine suffering like that. So blessed for good people to help them out. Would love to be a part of that. I will be praying for everyone in that country. I don't understand hatred and never will. Praise God for sending them help. When I feel sorry for myself I need to remember how blessed I truly am to live in a country where I can praise God freely. Some people don't believe and will make their comments but I don't have to worry about being jailed for my beliefs. I need to not forget that people are killed for their beliefs . Thank you Lord Jesus for helping them.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by danie on 04/17/2017 at 11:20 PM

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