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Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Raleigh Mayoral Rivals Nancy McFarlane, Charles Francis to Tape Debate That Will Air Friday and Sunday

Posted By on Wed, Oct 18, 2017 at 6:23 PM

Raleigh Mayor Nancy McFarlane and Democratic challenger Charles Francis will tape a debate on Friday afternoon to be aired by Spectrum News. The debate will have no live audience, but will air at seven thirty p.m. Friday and ten p.m. Sunday, the station said. "Spectrum News is committed to hosting a televised debate for the Raleigh's mayor's race," Spectrum assistant news director Walter Campbell wrote McFarlane during discussions on the program. McFarlane, who is unaffiliated politically, ran some thirteen percentage points ahead of Francis in the October 10 balloting but failed to reach the majority needed to avoid a runoff. Francis, a...

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WaPo: Trump Stiffed a Local Gold Star Family Out of $25,000

Posted By on Wed, Oct 18, 2017 at 4:25 PM

In early June, Dillon Baldridge, a twenty-two-year-old soldier from Zebulon, was fatally gunned down by an Afghan police in a suspected insider attack. A few weeks later, President Trump called Baldridge's grieving father to express his condolences and offer him $25,000. He also vowed to create an online fundraising campaign for the family. Neither of those things happened, according to the fallen soldier's father, Chris Baldridge. These revelations come from the Washington Post, which published an article this afternoon detailing Trump's offer to the Baldridge family and his rocky relationship with Gold Star families. Although Trump claims that he has spoken to every family...

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Durham Applies for a Federal Grant to Two-Way the Loop, and It’s About Damn Time

Posted By on Wed, Oct 18, 2017 at 11:06 AM

This morning, the city of Durham announced that it had applied for a $12 million U.S. Department of Transportation TIGER Grant to convert the hated downtown loop into a two-way street. If the city wins the grant—part of a $500 million discretionary pool of money that the feds use for infrastructure projects—it would use it to change pavement markings, modify traffic signals, and construct roundabouts. “For decades the downtown loop, and the system of other one-way downtown streets, has been widely viewed as confusing, unsafe and a detriment to revitalization,” the city said in a press release. “The loop,...

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Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Breaking: Research Triangle Regional Partnership Sends Amazon a Bid to Bring HQ2 to North Carolina

Posted By on Tue, Oct 17, 2017 at 6:22 PM

The Triangle region sent off its bid Tuesday to become the site of the mega-corporation Amazon's second headquarters, potentially bringing fifty thousand highly paid workers and $5 billion in investments to North Carolina, a Research Triangle Regional Partnership executive said. Aided by the regional body, consisting of ten counties and Research Triangle Park, the area sent off information in response to the request for proposals, or RFP,  that Amazon made public September 7. A task force cochaired by Raleigh-Durham International Airport Authority chairman and Durham mayoral candidate Farad Ali and Citrix vice president of project management Nate Spilker worked with local and...

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FERC Approves Atlantic Coast Pipeline, But N.C. DEQ Can Stop it in its Tracks

Posted By on Tue, Oct 17, 2017 at 1:16 PM

Last week, the INDY published an in-depth look at the controversial Atlantic Coast Pipeline, a $5 billion infrastructure project by Duke Energy and Dominion Energy that would carry fracked gas through West Virginia, Virginia, and eight counties in eastern North Carolina. If approved and constructed, the pipeline would cross six hundred miles of the Southeast and transport about 1.5 billion cubic feet a day of natural gas to customers in North Carolina and Virginia. Since the project's introduction, it’s been controversial. In North Carolina alone, it would cross more than 320 waterways and directly pass through the properties of about a...

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McFarlane Bashes Francis for Speaking to Wake GOP Meeting, Links Him With Trump

Posted By on Tue, Oct 17, 2017 at 12:28 PM

Raleigh Mayor Nancy McFarlane lashed out Tuesday against electoral challenger Charles Francis, associating him with “Donald Trump and his America First policies” after Francis spoke to a Wake County Republican Party meeting Monday night. Francis responded that he's a proud Democrat who wants to reach out to voters all over Raleigh. McFarlane, who is politically unaffiliated, faces Democrat Francis in a November 7 runoff following an October 10 election in which she garnered 48.45 percent of the vote to Francis's 36.67 percent. The officially nonpartisan race has seen both Francis and McFarlane receive campaign donations from high-profile Republicans and Democrats....

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Monday, October 16, 2017

Mayoral Candidates Nancy McFarlane, Charles Francis Trade Barbs as Race to November 7 Runoff Begins

Posted By on Mon, Oct 16, 2017 at 3:52 PM

Raleigh, get ready, for the train of speeches. Democratic candidate Charles Francis's request for a November 7 runoff against Nancy McFarlane in Raleigh's mayoral race kicks off another round of rhetoric, door-knocking, fundraising, and, very likely, a sharper new tone. Francis, a banker and lawyer, came out punching from the day in July when he filed to run, calling McFarlane "aloof" and disconnected from many parts of Raleigh. McFarlane, a three-term incumbent, mostly kept the gloves on during the campaign, but that started to change by election night. She almost reached the vote count needed to avoid a runoff,...

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Friday, October 13, 2017

How the Legislature Screwed Up Raleigh’s Runoff Elections

Posted By on Fri, Oct 13, 2017 at 4:29 PM

Under state law, Raleigh mayoral candidate Charles Francis has until noon Thursday, October 19, to decide whether to request a runoff against incumbent Nancy McFarlane. Under a different state law, however, early voting for the November 8 election is scheduled to start Thursday morning—before Francis has to actually make a decision—which would seem to make the balloting process somewhat difficult. (Francis says he’ll make an announcement Monday, so perhaps the Board of Elections will be off the hook.) The whole snafu originated with ongoing efforts by state legislators to make it more difficult for black people to vote, according to...

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Thursday, October 12, 2017

Make Way for the NIMBY Raleigh City Council, as Newcomers Nicole Stewart and Stef Mendell Oust Bonner Gaylord and Defeat Stacy Miller

Posted By on Thu, Oct 12, 2017 at 8:05 PM

OK, maybe it's a little strong, calling the new configuration of Raleigh's governing body the NIMBY City Council. But with business-friendly incumbent Bonner Gaylord and well-funded challenger Stacy Miller deciding against runoffs for City Council seats Thursday, Raleigh can look forward to a panel replete with neighborhood advocates. They will include newcomers Nicole Stewart and Stef Mendell, as well as victorious incumbents Russ Stephenson, Kay Crowder and David Cox.  Mayoral challenger Charles Francis's decision on whether to seek a runoff against Mayor Nancy McFarlane will be closely watched for its effect on the council to be sworn in December. Gaylord...

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NAACP Elects Greensboro Pastor to Succeed William J. Barber II as Its NC President

Posted By on Thu, Oct 12, 2017 at 12:20 PM

The North Carolina NAACP has announced that its new president: the Reverend T. Anthony Spearman, a Greensboro pastor with many years of leadership experience in the organization. In an announcement Thursday, Spearman signaled that he will be following the course set by the Reverend William Barber II, who announced earlier this year that he would leave to head the Poor People's Campaign. Spearman was elected at the recent NAACP convention in Raleigh. In a press release, Spearman, pastor of Clinton Tabernacle AME Zion Church and recently third vice president of the state NAACP, said he is grateful that Barber has...

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Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Mayoral Challenger Charles Francis Among Three Raleigh Candidates Undecided About Runoff

Posted By on Wed, Oct 11, 2017 at 7:08 PM

Raleigh mayoral candidate Charles Francis said Wednesday that he wants to check with supporters and see final vote tallies before he makes a call on a runoff with incumbent Mayor Nancy McFarlane. In addition, city council candidates Bonner Gaylord and Stacy Miller had not made decisions by Wednesday afternoon on whether to ask for runoffs in their races. Because of a quirk in state law, State Board of Elections officials were urging candidates across North Carolina to decide quickly on whether to request runoffs. McFarlane, an unaffiliated politician, outpolled Francis, a Democrat, by more than six thousand votes but would...

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With More Court Cases Continued, Defend Durham Calls Out Sheriff Andrews, Lifts Up LGBTQ Activists

Posted By on Wed, Oct 11, 2017 at 5:15 PM

Four people charged in connection with the August 14 dismantling of a Confederate statue in Durham and a spontaneous August 18 anti-Klan rally downtown have had their cases continued to December 5. Jessica Jude, Qasima Wideman, Dwayne Dixon, and Gregory Williams appeared in Durham County court this morning. They are among fourteen people facing charges related to the two demonstrations. The arrestees and their supporters have coalesced into an antiracist movement known as Defend Durham. Jude and Wideman are charged with inciting a riot, injury to personal property, and injury to real property in connection with the toppling of the...

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Stefanie Mendell Outpolls Bonner Gaylord in Raleigh City Council District E; Result Leaves Room for Runoff

Posted By on Wed, Oct 11, 2017 at 6:54 AM

In a surprising political development, District E incumbent Bonner Gaylord was outpolled in the North Hills district by challenger Stefanie Mendell, who promised voters she would bring a better balance between strong neighborhoods and development. Neither candidate got the majority of votes cast needed to avoid a runoff. Mendell, in her first run at electoral politics, had 49.67 percent of the vote with all precincts in and Gaylord had 44.93 percent. Raleigh native Gaylord has served four terms on the council, becoming a reliable presence and a frequent ally of Mayor Nancy McFarlane. He was criticized in some quarters for his...

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Cole-McFadden Survives Durham Council Primary, Moffitt Does Not

Posted By on Wed, Oct 11, 2017 at 2:03 AM

The Durham City Council will have at least two new members come December, after Tuesday's primary knocked out one incumbent. In the Ward 1 race, incumbent Cora Cole-McFadden and challenger DeDreana Freeman will advance to the November 7 general election. Mark-Anthony Middleton and John Rooks Jr. will square off for the Ward 2 seat being vacated by Eddie Davis. In Ward 3, incumbent Don Moffitt came in third, so it will be Vernetta Alston against Shelia Ann Huggins. (And in case you haven't heard, Steve Schewel and Farad Ali made it through Tuesday's mayoral primary). The Ward 1 race had...

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Durham's Next Mayor Will Be Steve Schewel or Farad Ali

Posted By on Wed, Oct 11, 2017 at 12:31 AM

Steve Schewel and Farad Ali came out on top in Durham's crowded mayoral primary Tuesday. Even if you expected those results, the margins may have come as a surprise. Schewel won 51 percent of votes cast and Ali 29 percent, enough to advance both to the November 7 general election. The winner of that contest will be Durham’s first new mayor since 2001, when Bill Bell was first elected to the seat. Pierce Freelon was the third-highest vote-getter, with about 16 percent of the ballots. Sylvester Williams, Shea Ramirez, Tracy Drinker, and Michael Johnson rounded out the field, in that...

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Runoff Races Could Be Key to Future Balance on Raleigh City Council

Posted By on Wed, Oct 11, 2017 at 12:07 AM

A pro-neighborhood shift could be ahead for Raleigh City Council, with newcomer Stefanie Mendell outpolling long-time member Bonner Gaylord, who could ask for a runoff. Another newbie, Nicole Stewart, could vie for an at-large seat in a runoff with lawyer Stacy Miller. Raleigh City Council veteran Russ Stephenson won a first-place finish among at-large candidates Tuesday, with 28 percent of the vote.  Stewart got the next highest number of votes for the seat made available with the departure of Mary-Ann Baldwin. Because Stewart didn't receive 25 percent, Miller has the option of asking for a runoff. Calls to the campaign weren't...

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Runoff for Raleigh Mayor's Post May Be Ahead as Francis Denies McFarlane a Majority of Votes

Posted By on Wed, Oct 11, 2017 at 12:04 AM

Nancy McFarlane needed to get 50 percent plus one of the sixty-thousand-plus voters in Tuesday's municipal elections to remain in the Raleigh mayor's office without the possibility of a runoff. However, a vigorous campaign by Democratic challenger Charles Francis won him enough votes to prevent an outright victory. Incumbent McFarlane bested Francis by more than six thousand votes but received 48.45 percent of the unofficial tally, with Francis earning nearly 37 percent, according to unofficial tallies. Francis told WRAL that he would live to fight another day, but at eleven thirty p.m. the McFarlane campaign had not heard directly from...

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Tuesday, October 10, 2017

David Cox Outpolls John Odom in Fight For District B seat on Raleigh City Council

Posted By on Tue, Oct 10, 2017 at 8:43 PM

Raleigh's District B saw one of the city's closest races in 2015, with political newcomer David Cox defeating veteran Raleigh figure John Odom by 261 votes. This year was an entirely different story, with Cox retaining his seat by taking about 68 percent of the vote, to Odom's 31 percent, with all precincts reporting. Cox made his reputation before the 2015 election by leading neighbors in the northeast region in successfully opposing a planned Publix grocery store development in the district. He has continued to stand for slow-growth causes and a continued presence for the citizen advisory committees that represent...

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Raleigh voters overwhelmingly supporting referendum on $206M transportation bond

Posted By on Tue, Oct 10, 2017 at 8:13 PM

Raleigh voters on Tuesday gave strong support Tuesday to  a $206.7 million transportation bond, with revenue going to more than 20 projects designed to improve streets and to shore up connections in the city's growing network of transportation modes. With 91 of 108 precincts reporting, the referendum was enjoying nearly seventy-three percent approval. The bond projects cover a broad range of Raleigh, including an $8.6 million improvement of Old Wake Forest Road, the final of three segments being widened on Tryon Road, and a Poole Road project that would include "widening the street to a four-lane median-divided section and the installation of...

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Monday, October 9, 2017

Poll: N.C. Voters Love Confederate Monuments, Worry About North Korea, Think the Country Is on the Wrong Track

Posted By on Mon, Oct 9, 2017 at 3:44 PM

Meredith College is out with a poll today that finds that most North Carolina voters believe the country is more divided than it was six months ago and more than 60 percent of them say Donald Trump is to blame. (Sixty-five percent say the media is a “major reason” for the disunion as well.) Other highlights from the survey: 61 percent believe Confederate monuments should stay put, and 57 percent believe they are “important monuments to North Carolina’s past.” 54 percent believe that diplomacy will prove effective in the North Korea situation, and 58 percent want to see increased sanctions....

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Friday, October 6, 2017

Raleigh Mayoral Candidates Wind Up Campaigning, Count War Chests

Posted By on Fri, Oct 6, 2017 at 5:36 PM

With the Raleigh mayoral and city council elections less than a week away, the candidates' money is on the table—at least all the coin we'll see until well after the October 10 election is over. But the campaigning isn’t over. Both major candidates will be out on the scene this weekend, with incumbent Mayor Nancy McFarlane making a stop from eleven a.m. until noon Saturday at Read With Me, a children’s bookstore and art shop at 111 East Hargett Street in downtown Raleigh. “This month we get to hear the true story of how our Mayor Nancy McFarlane traveled to the home of...

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Muslim Raleigh City Council Candidate Zainab Baloch Says Defacement of Her Sign Won't Stop Her Campaign

Posted By on Fri, Oct 6, 2017 at 12:55 PM

Zainab Baloch, a candidate for a Raleigh City Council at-large post, says her campaign will stand firm against the hateful rhetoric with which vandals apparently defaced her campaign sign on Louisburg Road. Baloch, a Muslim, learned today that a large wooden sign had been painted over with a crude swastika, a racial reference, and the word "Trump." Baloch, a state employee and UNC-Chapel Hill graduate student, is running along with six other candidates for two of the council's at-large seats in October 10 elections.  The candidate's parents immigrated from Pakistan and she grew up in Raleigh. "This will not stop...

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Should a Planned City Development at Durham Station Have All Affordable Housing?

Posted By on Fri, Oct 6, 2017 at 6:21 AM

Durham City Council members on Thursday got an update on plans to build affordable housing next to the Durham Station transportation hub—but they still have decisions to make on what the development will look like. A year ago, the city issued a request for proposals to develop the two-acre site, which is city-owned, stipulating that 80 percent of the apartments be set aside for tenants earning less than 60 percent of Durham’s median income. They got one proposal back, from DHIC Inc. and Self-Help Ventures. Since then, the two groups, along with city staff and Cline Design Associates, have been trying...

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Thursday, October 5, 2017

Sorry Anti-Fluoride Folks, OWASA Will Resume Fluoridation Next Week

Posted By on Thu, Oct 5, 2017 at 1:27 PM

The Orange Water and Sewer Authority says it will again add fluoride to its water supply beginning October 9, after about eight months without the stuff. OWASA stopped fluoridating its water in February after too much fluoride was pumped into its treatment plant. According to OWASA, the over-fluoridated water didn't enter the drinking water supply. Around the same time, the system experienced an unrelated, major water main break and the plant was shut down, leading to a water shortage. The OWASA board decided the next month to resume fluoridation once improvements were made at the plant. You can read more about...

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Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Raleigh City Council Members Agree to Meet October 30 on New Community Engagement Board

Posted By on Wed, Oct 4, 2017 at 3:43 PM

Raleigh City Council members agreed Tuesday to start discussion on a new community engagement board in an October 30 meeting that will occur almost six months after the panel's creation. But even setting the day for the meeting didn't happen without a scuffle. At-large member Russ Stephenson suggested delaying the meeting until the members who are elected in the October 10 municipal balloting can take part. That date would have left out the other at-large member, Mary-Ann Baldwin, who has decided not run for her seat again. "Oh, no," Baldwin said in a "don't-try-it" tone. "I've invested too much time in...

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Twitter Activity

Most Recent Comments

Where has Francis been the last 20 years in Raleigh politics? He shows up now and has all the answers? …

by GET REAL on McFarlane Bashes Francis for Speaking to Wake GOP Meeting, Links Him With Trump (News)

She's never been here before. She's been reelected over and over apparently. Taking cheap shots will not work. She needs …

by that1chick on McFarlane Bashes Francis for Speaking to Wake GOP Meeting, Links Him With Trump (News)

@snake00 - You forgot to point out how much money Francis received from large Republican donors. What has that political …

by JerrryG on Runoff for Raleigh Mayor's Post May Be Ahead as Francis Denies McFarlane a Majority of Votes (News)

This is so sad this woman continues with her untruths and deception of making things appear what they are really …

by Diana Powell on McFarlane Bashes Francis for Speaking to Wake GOP Meeting, Links Him With Trump (News)

@jerryg you said that the Mayor has no power over mental health, no power over policing and is a "weak …

by snake00 on Runoff for Raleigh Mayor's Post May Be Ahead as Francis Denies McFarlane a Majority of Votes (News)

Comments

Where has Francis been the last 20 years in Raleigh politics? He shows up now and has all the answers? …

by GET REAL on McFarlane Bashes Francis for Speaking to Wake GOP Meeting, Links Him With Trump (News)

She's never been here before. She's been reelected over and over apparently. Taking cheap shots will not work. She needs …

by that1chick on McFarlane Bashes Francis for Speaking to Wake GOP Meeting, Links Him With Trump (News)

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