My positive impression of INDY Week under it's new ownership came to a screeching halt yesterday. For the past year county leaders -- the commissioners, the county manager and senior staff -- have analyzed the affordable housing situation in the County and committed $2 million from their capital funds and also decided to include a $5 million bond for housing on the ballot this fall. Housing advocates were very pleased by these decisions and valued working in partnership with advocates for the school bond. County officials have reached out consistently for the input from the members of the Orange County Affordable Housing Coalition. How all this activity and planning, not to mention that of the Towns of Carrboro and Chapel Hill, could have escaped INDY Week's attention is stupefying. I strongly encourage the INDY Week to reconsider its position on the proposed bond.
What I find "startling" is Indy's lack of specifics about where they supposedly "asked around" about affordable housing plans. In early September, they certainly did not respond to the Orange County Affordable Housing Coalition's concerted efforts to provide them with the very information they believe does not exist.
It takes 3 clicks from a Google search to find both Chapel Hill and Carrboro's strategic plans to address affordable housing. The plans involve intimate collaborations with reputable and well-known nonprofit organizations that have collectively served Orange County for over 50 years.
This "sea of nonprofits" is comprised of tireless advocates and professionals who have dedicated their careers to building, financing, negotiating, researching, and promoting affordable housing solutions.
Aside from flippantly dismissing the work of hundreds of affordable housing professionals in a poorly researched missive, possibly causing long-term and irreparable harm to housing efforts in Orange County, where INDY is not even based, what have YOU done to advance the cause?
There has been research done to identify lands owned by towns and the county already, meaning that the money would not necessarily need to go toward purchase of land. The OCAHC and the County have worked to put forward possible plans so if funding is forthcoming, actions can be taken to realize more affordable housing in this area. It is unfortunate that the Indy has not inquired of those who would put the housing in place but made what I consider an uninformed decision. I live in an affordable housing community in Carrboro and I see where people who need to live in town cannot find affordable housing. Please reconsider your non-endorsement and support the Affordable Housing Bond.
I urge the Indy to reconsider. The Indy has long been an advocate of strategic investments in community assets, so it is stunning that it failed to acknowledge or respect the Orange County Affordable Housing Strategic Plan or any of the municipal affordable housing goals and objectives. It is wishful thinking to assume that the private sector will resolve our affordable housing crisis without a level of public investment. This bond provides the means for meaningful public/private partnerships and strategic investments where the private sector will not or cannot act. While no bond is a panacea, the failure to pass this bond will mean that our affordable housing non-profits and providers will continue to struggle to meet the minimum needs and the strategic plan will be rendered a pile of dust on the shelf. No bond means status quo which means that OC will continue it's march towards becoming a place affordable by only those able to quality for 350K+ mortgages and high rents.
It's very hard to believe that the Indy is not endorsing the Orange County Housing Bonds. With housing prices the highest in the state, with major landlords deciding not to accept Housing Choice Vouchers and with thousands of lower wage workers having to drive long distances, with the related cost and pollution, it's hard to think of any other county that needs affordable housing more. In addition, we have some terrific affordable housing providers who have demonstrated that they can spend housing bond funds effectively and efficiently. We need to given them the resources to fulfill their critically important missions. I hope the Indy has the courage to rethink this recommendation and change it to a "yes."
It's truly unfortunate that the Indy is so ill-informed on the housing bond issue. The Orange County Commissioners have been discussing their strategic plan for many months and are very close to approving a plan that will focus on very low income households. These are the people who are least served by 'the market'. They might be able to pay $350 to $500 per month in rent. They are frequently elderly or people with disabilities. They count on the nonprofit sector to provide housing, and the nonprofits need a source of subsidy funding - such as the proposed County bonds.
The Indy just got this one wrong. But Orange County voters will get it right by voting FOR the affordable housing bond.
The Indy should retract this ill informed non-endorsement immediately. Anyone who has even a passing familiarity with Orange County housing politics knows the Indy is way off base.
The last thing Orange County needs is more plans about affordable housing. The Town of Carrboro has a plan. The Town of Chapel Hill has a plan. Orange County is finalizing a five year strategic plan. The Orange County Affordable Housing Coalition has a very specific plan. We don't need more plans, we need funding!
There are unfunded affordable housing developments in the pipeline that need support NOW. As the sole visible opposition the Indy will bear full responsibility for a defeated housing bond - which will prevent Orange County from addressing our community's most pressing need.
Doucette over Woodard? makes sense given that it comes from the same newspaper that featured a cover story on soup during election season.
After reading your opposition to the Housing Bond, I have concluded that the Russians have hacked your site. It is unbelievable that you oppose this bond. Do your homework. Ask the county what the previous housing bond produced. Call the nonprofits and find out their five-year plans. Most of the time, an INDY endorsement means something, but this time it just looks like somebody was having a bad day.
ncsu_grad, by my count you've failed that quiz three times now.
Where is NC Senate District 20? (Floyd McKissick)
About the Durham bond referendums, I find it hard to support any bond referendum that results in increased taxes, given widespread waste in spending the bond money and possible corruption to some degree by those who are awarded contracts for the work, if not the county agencies themselves. Furthermore, there seems to be a lack of accountability on spending bond money; at least I cannot find any information about the degree to which the county monitors the expenditure of bond money, to ensure Durham gets its money's worth. Nor do I find any substantial details about how bond money is planned to be spent; these is little information beyond the happy superficial statements about each on the ballot. For example, consider the state's investment in PowerSchool, an abysmal system that teachers, administrators and parents ALL find objectionable.
It has become a very sad state that the Indy has gone party instead of people. On all the issues identified in their support of Yvonne Holley I exceed her positions with far more innovative solutions. As a premis, we owe it to our state that we undo the wrongs we've done where it is possible.
If I am elected I will work to appoint a full time expungement board in every county and for the state, work to expunge the records of folks convicted of addiction related convictions, repeal drug posession related codes, institute a no stop ticketing policy for motor vehicle compliance issues, repeal HB2, mandate gender neutral bathrooms in all government buildings, reduce sales tax on food utilities and medicine to ZERO, and incentivize green grocers in food desert zones with reduced wage taxes.You see my opponent support Republicans in keeping body camera footage from the people that are being filmed. She is a wonderful woman but she is not at all in touch with the needs of her constituents. She isn't legislatively innovative, and she needs to find another hobby.
Check it out. www.oleniii.com
Re Marty Miler over incumbent Anna Worley (whom I continue to support): If Marty Miller gave 2 cents about "ending the school to prison pipeline" then he WOULD NOT BE a Republican! I honestly think the Indy's biggest problem in this season is its NAME. That'said what forces other to defy all logic to find SOME Republican SOMEwhere that it can endorse. The objections to Judge Worley's alleged "temperament" are subjective, not substantiated.
I have been a guardian ad litem in Durham county (district 14) for a couple of years
now, and it is in William Marsh's court that I most frequently find myself.
I observe that he is a quiet and humble person, and that his actions
reflect a true concern for the children he serves. In addition, Judge Marsh
grew up in Durham and is quite familiar with the population he now serves
from the bench.
His opponent, Shamieka Rhinehart, is reported to be a very competent
jurist, and she is much more highly rated than Judge Marsh by the NC Bar;
however, that may be due in part to personality differences, and how these
lead each of them to be understood or not so well understood, by the ways
in which they communicate. Also, her background and experience lies in
criminal, and as my GAL supervisor says, we cannot really afford to have
her learning on this bench; with the current case load involving these
social services cases, I think we need someone with the direct experience
to keep on keeping on with the children.
Indy: you're not from around here, are you?
As a concerned citizen, I don't understand why INDY would endorse Mr. Rand over Judge Nagle when INDY had this to say about Mr. Rand on October 16, 2008:
"Raleigh attorney Walter B. Rand, has worked extensively with the Wake Public Defender's office. Unfortunately, Rand has several complaints filed against him in that role. More telling, however, are the complaints from sitting judges that question Rand's competence as a criminal attorney: He was barred from representing indigent clients from 2003-2005. He (Rand) has a criminal history including two arrests for impaired driving."
As I understand the facts, Mr. Rand has three arrests for impaired driving and two convictions for those crimes. I'm perplexed as to why INDY would endorse Mr. Rand's integrity over Judge Nagle who has no such blemishes on his record.
A W Jeffreys
I'm dumbfounded that IndyWeek is endorsing Doucette over Mike Woodard! Seriously, what the hell?! Woodard has stood strong for progressive issues during the most trying of times in our NCGA. He's been an excellent representative and engaged member of our community. He deserves more than your ham-handed compliment - he deserves your support. This is truly disappointing.
The Indy has likely chosen to ignore the Libertarian party as its editors are keenly aware of the appeal the Libertarian party has to so many young and truly independent voters. I have some positions that overlap with Cynthia Ball in House 49, like repealing HB2. I should also note the introduction of third party representatives to Jones Street would really "shake things up". However, the Indy is aware of how competitive House 49 is so they ignored the fact that a Libertarian was in the race. All of the other media outlets I have interacted with so far have at least reported that three individuals are running in House 49. The Indy claims to represent minorities and free thinkers. I assume they want people to vote their conscious and to consider all the candidates. I guess that is just rhetoric; the Indy might as well just be a DNC propaganda arm. Real change will come as the Libertarian party establishes itself as a real alternative to the broken two party system. David Ulmer, LIB for House 49.
Wow, what a misstep not to endorse Mike Woodard. This is exactly the time that NC needs experienced lawmakers to continue to dismantle the mess we are in. Woodard puts every ounce of his energy and time into being with the people he represents and this is no time to fail to appreciate that. Durham is super loyal to Mike and will vote for him anyway.
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