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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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Tuesday, April 9, 2013

In Orange County, trash gets its day

Posted By on Tue, Apr 9, 2013 at 8:00 AM

The future of Orange County's celebrated recycling program is before county commissioners tonight. County commissioners will consider a number of proposals—including the widely-reviled prospect of privatization—when they meet at 7 p.m. in Hillsborough. Expect a full story on the recycling program and its funding challenges in Wednesday's print edition of INDY Week, but in the meantime, sit in on tonight's meeting if you want an admittedly complicated primer. The program touts an unprecedented 59 percent waste reduction rate in the last two decades, but a 2012 court decision has put the program's funding in jeopardy. Obtain tonight's agenda here....

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Monday, April 8, 2013

Last chance to publicly support Dix park

Posted By on Mon, Apr 8, 2013 at 11:19 AM

After today, the fate of Dorothea Dix park will likely be out of your control. Triangle Wiki The second and final public hearing of Wake County’s delegation of general assembly members is scheduled for 4 pm today at the legislature. The many advocacy organizations that favor Dix park are asking people to come to the hearing wearing green to show solidarity. Those who are interested will be able to sign up to speak. More than 300 people showed up for the first public hearing two weeks ago. Speakers last time also railed against a bill that would redraw—for the second...

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Friday, April 5, 2013

Rachel Maddow calls N.C. GOP "amazeballs"

Posted By on Fri, Apr 5, 2013 at 1:27 PM

For the liberals out there: Rachel Maddow—the oh-so-sharp host of MSNBC's "Rachel Maddow Show"—has heard your cries. On Thursday's show, Maddow panned the ominously-numbered Senate Bill 666, a measure that—for all intents and purposes—appears geared to curb North Carolina's college vote. In case you don't remember, college students made up a key demographic in North Carolina's Democratic election victories of 2008. The Maddow gem from Thursday's broadcast? "Do yourself a favor and go set your Google news alert to North Carolina Republicans. They have completely unchecked power right now, and their ideas about how to use that power are, as...

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Wednesday, April 3, 2013

House subcommittee approves rollback of renewable energy

Posted By on Wed, Apr 3, 2013 at 3:58 PM

The Affordable and Reliable Energy Act (House Bill 298), which would repeal the provisions in 2007's Senate Bill 3 mandating that a portion of electricity sold by utilities companies be from renewable sources—is gaining traction in the General Assembly. At a public hearing today, the Commerce and Job Development Subcommittee on Energy and Emerging Markets approved a revised version of the bill by an 11-10 vote. Speakers who oppose the bill, including clean energy business leaders, farmers and energy experts, say HB 298 will undermine North Carolina’s expanding clean energy industry, which has generated $1.7 billion and more than 20,000...

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Background checks for poor people, just not teachers

Posted By on Wed, Apr 3, 2013 at 1:56 PM

Just a quick post here to take note of two bills moving quickly through the general assembly that reshape the idea of who should face criminal background checks. One would mean that all residents applying for food stamps or welfare undergo a criminal background check. From North Carolina Health News: Currently, all DSS workers are required to do is ask an applicant if they — or anyone else who would be on the receiving end of the benefits — currently have a warrant out against them. The bill would require DSS workers to provide information such as address, phone number,...

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Tuesday, April 2, 2013

N.C. Republicans seek exemption from U.S. Constitution (reality to follow)

Posted By on Tue, Apr 2, 2013 at 5:19 PM

GOP lawmakers haven’t floated the idea of secession yet, but that may be what’s next. A joint resolution filed by Reps. Harry Warren and Carl Ford argues that the establishment clause of the First Amendment does not—read NOT—apply to North Carolina, or any state for that matter. If the First Amendment doesn’t apply to the states within the United States, does that leave Puerto Rico and Guam? The resolution, stunningly, goes on to say “the Constitution of the United States does not grant the federal government and does not grant the federal courts the power to determine what is or...

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