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Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Chapel Hill Councilman Lee Storrow begins re-election campaign

Posted By on Wed, Mar 18, 2015 at 2:35 PM

It's early, but what's expected to be a busy campaign season in Chapel Hill is underway. On Tuesday, incumbent Chapel Hill Town Councilman Lee Storrow announced the launch of his re-election campaign. At the age of 22, Storrow was the youngest person on the Council (and still is) upon his election in 2011. “Serving this community for the past four years has been an enormous privilege,” Storrow said in a statement. “While we’ve accomplished a lot, I hear from residents every day about how we can improve our town. I look forward to working with folks from across Orange County...

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Tuesday, March 10, 2015

In Chapel Hill, university and town announce $3 million loan for affordable housing

Posted By on Tue, Mar 10, 2015 at 10:42 AM

Town and university leaders in Chapel Hill on Monday announced the latest step in preserving affordable housing in the town's historic Northside neighborhood. UNC-Chapel Hill will grant a $3 million, no-interest, 10-year loan to help buy and resell properties in Northside, a historic black community that has become a rental destination for university students over the last two decades. Durham-based Self-Help will manage the loan, in partnership with the Jackson Center, a neighborhood nonprofit, and the town. "This is a historic day for the Northside neighborhood," said Chapel Hill Mayor Mark Kleinschmidt in a release. "We have worked to address...

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Friday, February 13, 2015

Orange County seeks input on affordable housing

Posted By on Fri, Feb 13, 2015 at 2:18 PM

Affordable housing is on our minds for many reasons, not the least of which being the ongoing planning for Durham and Chapel Hill's 17-mile light-rail system. The light rail is expected to bring massive hikes in land values along the track, forcing local government leaders to make housing preservation plans now. Next week is your latest chance to weigh in on the subject in Orange County. County commissioners will hold a public hearing Tuesday regarding housing needs in the county, Chapel Hill, Carrboro and Hillsborough. Commissioners are prepping a five-year strategic plan for addressing the county's housing problem. The plan...

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Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Carrboro to consider $12 milion home for ArtsCenter, Kidzu

Posted By on Tue, Jan 13, 2015 at 1:28 PM

For 40 years, Carrboro's ArtsCenter has been a hub for performing arts and arts education in Orange County. Over the next two weeks, they may have to prove they’ll be around for another 40 to land an unprecedented deal with the town for a new downtown home. On Jan. 20, the Carrboro Board of Aldermen will hold a public hearing to consider partnering with the ArtsCenter and Chapel Hill children’s museum Kidzu for a new $12.1 million center. Additional informational meetings are scheduled for tonight and Wednesday. Under the proposal, Carrboro would fund more than a third of the cost—$4.5...

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Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Investigation pins UNC-CH academic scandal on a pair of academic administrators

Posted By on Wed, Oct 22, 2014 at 5:37 PM

Coaches, academic advisers, administrators in the university's African and Afro-American Studies Department and the university itself are all the culprits in a long-awaited report released Wednesday into UNC-Chapel Hill's ongoing academic scandal. The 136-page report from former federal prosecutor Kenneth Wainstein delves deeper than any previous probe into the scandal, which unfolded after the NCAA began looking into benefits received by former football players in 2010 and expanded to include many other sports at the university. The report primarily points the finger at former department director Julius Nyang’oro and a manager, Deborah Crowder, for offering hundreds of irregular classes between...

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Friday, September 12, 2014

Chapel Hill Town Councilman Lee Storrow takes a new title

Posted By on Fri, Sep 12, 2014 at 3:55 PM

Chapel Hill Town Councilman Lee Storrow has a new title. Storrow has been named executive director of the N.C. Aids Action Network, an influential nonprofit that helps to promote advocacy and policy about the disease. At 22 years old, Storrow was the youngest town councilman in two decades when he was elected in Chapel Hill in 2011. He'll assume leadership of an organization that, like many healthcare advocacy organizations in the state, has fought its fair share of legislative battles in recent years. Last year, the organization was one of the loudest in the state in decrying Republican lawmakers' $8...

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Tuesday, July 29, 2014

DOJ to would-be Meadowmont and Durham frackers: Cease and desist

Posted By on Tue, Jul 29, 2014 at 2:25 PM

It would appear the Pennsylvania company behind a number of bizarre mineral rights leasing offers in Durham and Chapel Hill has gotten on N.C. Attorney General Roy Cooper's bad side. In a sharply worded letter mailed Monday, Cooper's office ordered Crimson Holdings Corporation—and its affiliated real estate firm Campbell Development LLC—to stop offering oil and gas leases in North Carolina. DOJ also demanded the prospective drillers, who sought to buy the mineral rights for nature preserves in Durham and the park at Meadowmont in Chapel Hill, reject and return any accepted lease offers from landowners. "Until you can demonstrate that...

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Thursday, July 24, 2014

DENR investigating landman behind Triangle fracking bids

Posted By on Thu, Jul 24, 2014 at 1:59 PM

Reps for the N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) say they are investigating the Pennsylvania agent behind a handful of likely doomed offers to buy mineral rights in the Triangle. As the Indy reported Wednesday, state law requires representatives for gas and oil companies, otherwise known as "landmen," to register with DENR or risk a civil penalty. Frank Sides, the agent named on the mineral rights offers of Crimson Holdings Incorporated, does not appear to be registered in the state, based on DENR's online registry. DENR spokesman Jamie Kritzer said his agency was only recently informed of Sides'...

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Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Driller apparently wants to frack Meadowmont in Chapel Hill

Posted By on Wed, Jul 23, 2014 at 2:58 PM

It appears the relatively unknown Crimson Holdings Corporation wants to frack more than a handful of nature preserves in Durham, as reported in today's Indy. Documents obtained by the Indy Wednesday show the company, which appears to be a small operation in Pittsburgh, made a similar request for mineral rights to the Chapel Hill Town Council last week. Their target? Roughly 51 acres of town-owned park land abutting Meadowmont, an upscale development on the border between Durham and Orange counties. Chapel Hill Town Councilman Ed Harrison said the Meadowmont land is the largest town-owned tract in Durham County. The response...

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Friday, June 20, 2014

Chapel Hill High graffiti artists troll principal

Posted By on Fri, Jun 20, 2014 at 12:46 PM

Graffiti trolling Principal Jackson at Chapel Hill High this month.Behold: Graffiti artists with an apparent, albeit spotty, grasp of ethics. An Indy reader sent us this photo, taken at Chapel Hill High School earlier this month. It appears to be a prank trolling Principal Sulura Jackson, who was accused by teachers last year of failing to cite her sources in numerous letters and writings. Although it's cut off in the photo, the pranksters wrote "cite this" before directing Jackson to Easybib, a free, online bibliography generator. They also took the time to misspell Jackson's first name and write the word...

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Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Orange County commissioners to consider tax increase tonight

Posted By on Tue, Jun 17, 2014 at 2:31 PM

Guard your pocketbooks. One of the Triangle's most expensive places to live may soon be a little more expensive. Orange County commissioners are expected to vote tonight on a $200.4 million budget that includes a 2-cent property tax increase. Officials say the cash is needed to pay for the needs of the county's two school systems, Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools and Orange County Schools. The plan would spend roughly $97 million on the two systems. Chapel Hill leaders have already approved a one-cent tax increase. Tonight's meeting begins at 7 p.m. at the Southern Human Services Center on Homestead Road...

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Monday, November 25, 2013

Chapel Hill High principal addresses plagiarism allegations

Posted By on Mon, Nov 25, 2013 at 5:12 PM

Embattled Chapel Hill High School Principal Sulura Jackson addressed the allegations of plagiarism in a recorded phone message this weekend, apologizing for the distraction caused by the controversy and pledging proper citation in the future. Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools spokesman Jeff Nash confirmed Monday that parents and staff at the Chapel Hill school received the message Friday night. Jackson is accused of plagiarism in school memos and letters both before and after her arrival in Chapel Hill this summer. “Although I was saddened to hear it through the newspaper, I have heard the requests of this staff and community and,...

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Thursday, November 21, 2013

More evidence of Chapel Hill High plagiarism?

Posted By on Thu, Nov 21, 2013 at 3:06 PM

The future for Chapel Hill High School Principal Sulura Jackson is unclear at the moment, following this week's plagiarism allegations. The allegations, as well as the evidence, are covered in detail in this week's Indy. Read it online here. Members of the Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools Board of Education were already scheduled to meet tonight at the Lincoln Center in Chapel Hill. The board's agenda says members will discuss a personnel matter in closed session starting at 6 p.m. The public portion of the meeting begins at 7 p.m. School administrators have defended Jackson, lauding her for attempts to increase...

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Thursday, November 7, 2013

Redistricting begins again in Chapel Hill-Carrboro schools

Posted By on Thu, Nov 7, 2013 at 2:33 PM

Expect redistricting drama to begin anew in Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools tonight. The school system's Board of Education will take on the subject of Glenwood Elementary overcrowding during tonight's meeting, scheduled for 7 p.m. at the Smith Middle School auditorium on Seawell School Road. Read the agenda here. School officials say Chapel Hill's Glenwood Elementary, home of an expanding Mandarin Dual Language program, is already 90 students above its capacity. That number will grow to 155 in 2014-2015 as the school's dual language and non-dual language programs continue to swell. The popular dual language program allows students to receive instruction...

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Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Orange County races over

Posted By on Wed, Nov 6, 2013 at 8:07 AM

Incumbents coasted and a few plucky newcomers were winners in last night's elections in Orange County. In the race for four seats on the Chapel Hill Town Council, the clear winners were current Mayor Pro Tem Ed Harrison, Councilwoman Sally Greene and two challengers in local pastor Maria Palmer and Duke University pathologist George Cianciolo. In Carrboro, the three incumbents—Jacquelyn Gist, Randee Haven-O'Donnell and Sammy Slade—were the victors. In Hillsborough, Jenn Weaver and Kathleen Ferguson won seats on the Hillsborough Board of Commissioners. And in the race for the Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools Board of Education, information technology specialist Andrew...

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Thursday, August 22, 2013

Chapel Hill leaders call for break with Russian sister city

Posted By on Thu, Aug 22, 2013 at 3:28 PM

Chapel Hill Mayor Mark Kleinschmidt Amid the continuing backlash to Russia's anti-gay "propaganda" law, two openly LGBT leaders in Chapel Hill are calling for the town to sever its "sister city" relationship with a Russian city. Chapel Hill Mayor Mark Kleinschmidt and Councilman Lee Storrow condemned the law in a joint statement Thursday afternoon, describing the news from Russia as "heartbreaking." "Innocent individuals and families face persecution, violence and detainment for expressing themselves openly and non-violently in the public square," the statement reads. "These laws are deplorable and do nothing but create hardship, suffering, and in some cases death, for...

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Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Indeed, Cardinal Innovations receives federal funding

Posted By on Wed, May 15, 2013 at 12:32 PM

As an addendum to today's story, Cardinal Innovations spokeswoman Rachel Porter confirmed after deadline Tuesday that her agency—known in official lingo as a managed care organization—does indeed receive federal funding from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). That information is key because it confirms the state-funded Cardinal Innovations, formerly known as Piedmont Behavioral Health, is subject to the findings of a federal investigation into whether Cardinal has broken federal law by denying mental health care reimbursements for the treatment of undocumented immigrants in its 15-county service area, which includes Orange and Chatham counties. As reported in today's...

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Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Better late than never for Rogers Road community center

Posted By on Wed, Apr 10, 2013 at 11:22 AM

It may have taken a few decades, but the landfill-blighted Rogers Road community in Chapel Hill is getting some recompense. Orange County commissioners unanimously approved a vote Tuesday night authorizing County Manager Frank Clifton to award a construction bid for no more than $650,000 to build a long-promised community center in the historically black, low-income neighborhood. Officials said construction could begin this summer with hopes of having the center open by summer 2014. It coincides with a plan to close the county landfill at June's end. "It's a great opportunity for our kids to learn that, through perseverance, anything can...

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Wednesday, March 20, 2013

North Carolina: No Medicaid dollars for undocumented mental health

Posted By on Wed, Mar 20, 2013 at 1:12 PM

Addendum: It seems that Cardinal Innovation's approach on mental health care for the undocumented community is not unique. N.C. Department of Health and Human Services spokeswoman Julie Henry notified INDY Week after its print deadline Tuesday that undocumented immigrants are only eligible for emergency service coverage under Medicaid rule, echoing the comments of Cardinal leaders in today's story. That indicates managed care organizations such as Cardinal—which is charged with dispensing public dollars for mental health treatment—are following the rule statewide to deny Medicaid reimbursements to providers treating mental illness among undocumented residents. Today's story investigates the impacts of the policy...

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Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Eve Carson killer to be sentenced again

Posted By on Tue, Feb 5, 2013 at 2:51 PM

Former Indy Week writer Matt Saldaña with Eve Carson in 2006 Expect a swift—and angry—response on this one. The N.C. Court of Appeals released its opinion today in the case of Laurence Alvin Lovette, one of two men convicted of killing UNC-Chapel Hill Student Body President Eve Carson in 2008. The high-profile murder case was one of the most notorious in UNC-Chapel Hill's history. According to Tuesday's court opinion, Lovette is due a resentencing because of the U.S. Supreme Court's decision last summer in Miller v. Alabama. The nation's highest court ruled then that a mandatory life sentence without the...

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Thursday, January 24, 2013

No Surprises: Sally Greene appointed to Chapel Hill Town Council

Posted By on Thu, Jan 24, 2013 at 3:42 PM

You might have seen this one coming. Chapel Hill Town Council members on Wednesday tapped former (well, not anymore) Councilwoman Sally Greene to fill the panel's vacant seat. The seat has been open since Penny Rich departed to join the Orange County Board of Commissioners last month. Greene seemed the frontrunner coming into Wednesday's meeting. She was a popular councilwoman from 2003 until 2011, when she stepped down reportedly to focus on her work at UNC's Center for the Study of the American South. Town leaders were also expected to be under pressure to appoint a woman to replace Rich,...

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Thursday, September 27, 2012

UNC advisory board eyes university curriculum

Posted By on Thu, Sep 27, 2012 at 7:00 AM

A plus-sized UNC advisory board—beset with controversy before the first gavel—convened for the first time Wednesday, mulling over the state universities' curriculum and changing demographics. The UNC Advisory Committee on Strategic Directions, which includes 31 leaders in education, business and politics, is expected to consider the future of the state's 17 public universities, but its makeup garnered more headlines than its actual charge before Wednesday's session. Critics are fired up over a handful of appointments, including the selection of publicly right-tilting businessmen like Art Pope and Fred Eshelman. UNC Board of Governors Chairman Peter Hans and UNC President Tom Ross...

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Friday, September 21, 2012

UNC-CH employees call on chancellor to stay

Posted By on Fri, Sep 21, 2012 at 11:20 AM

Chancellor Holden Thorp—beset by academic and athletic scandal in his short tenure at UNC-Chapel Hill—seems to at least have a chunk of the university's employees in his corner. The school's Employee Forum, a group representing university staff, is holding a "peaceful" rally supporting the troubled chancellor this morning in front of South Building, the school's administrative HQ. Thorp announced Monday that he would step down from his post at the close of the 2012-13 academic year after two years of an athletic scandal that began with the school's football program and expanded into the academic sphere. In a statement Tuesday,...

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Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Carrboro to mull Rogers Road sewer

Posted By on Tue, Sep 18, 2012 at 1:47 PM

After years of much-bemoaned inactivity on the touchy subject of Rogers Road, leaders in Orange County seem to be on the move these days. Two weeks ago, Orange County commissioners passed a sweeping resolution to pledge $500,000 for a long-sought community center in the low-income neighborhood vexed by an aging landfill. That comes after Chapel Hill leaders closed neighbors' makeshift community center on Rogers Road last month over numerous fire safety concerns. Tonight, the Carrboro Board of Aldermen will take up a proposal to provide public sewer to the community. Extending sewer service to Rogers Road residents would cost approximately...

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Monday, September 17, 2012

UNC Chancellor Holden Thorp to resign

Posted By on Mon, Sep 17, 2012 at 12:25 PM

Embattled UNC-Chapel Hill Chancellor Holden Thorp is on the way out. WRAL reported Monday morning that Thorp will step down at the close of the 2012-13 academic year, ending a watch that has been plagued by allegations of academic improprieties, primarily associated with the school's football program. The school confirmed the news in a press release later Monday morning. This comes after Thorp met privately Friday with the UNC Board of Governors, the panel in charge of the state's public universities. The release said Thorp on Sunday told UNC President Tom Ross of his plans to resign. "I will always...

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