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Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Updated: New indictments in UNC football scandal could include familiar names

Posted By on Wed, Nov 13, 2013 at 2:41 PM

UPDATE 11/13, 2:35 pm: The Daily Tar Heel reports that Willie Barley and Michael Johnson were the fourth and fifth individuals indicted. UPDATE 10/15, 8:55 am: WRAL reports that Patrick Jones was among those indicted. UPDATE 10/9, 12:26 pm: The Daily Tar Heel reports that Terry Watson was indicted, released on a $50,000 bond and will appear in court today at 2 pm. UPDATE 10/3, 12:55 pm: WRAL reports that Jennifer Wiley was one of five people indicted by the grand jury and is expected to appear in court today. More criminal charges are pending in the UNC football scandal,...

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Thursday, October 24, 2013

Chapel Hill's Graig Meyer new representative for House District 50

Posted By on Thu, Oct 24, 2013 at 8:21 PM

You might need a flow chart for this: Graig Meyer is the Triangle's latest legislator. He was appointed by the N.C. House Executive Committee Tuesday night to represent House District 50, which includes parts of Orange and northern Durham counties. His term expires in December 2014. Meyer, director of student equity and volunteer services at Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools, replaces Valerie Foushee, who switched from the House to the State Senate to fill Ellie Kinnaird's seat. Kinnaird retired after the 2013 legislative session to focus on voting rights issues. Other candidates for House 50 included Chapel Hill Town Councilor Laurin...

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Raleigh food distribution site in the works

Posted By on Thu, Oct 24, 2013 at 2:06 PM

Raleigh city staff members have identified a location near Moore Square Park that could serve as a temporary food distribution site for groups to use while the city works out a long-term solution to end homelessness. The 3,200-square-foot, city-owned warehouse, at 215 S. Person St., about two blocks from Moore Square, has entry points on both Person and Martin streets. Community-oriented Government Coordinator Dana Youst introduced the prospective location as a possibility Tuesday evening, at the beginning of the third meeting of a Raleigh task force charged with finding alternatives to food distribution in Moore Square Park. She said...

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Friday, October 18, 2013

Update: Bora Zivkovic resigns from Scientific American

Posted By on Fri, Oct 18, 2013 at 5:10 PM

Bora Zivkovic, scientist and blogs editor for Scientific American, has resigned from the magazine, according to a press release issued this afternoon. The announcement reads in part: Scientific American has an anti-harassment policy. We offer live and online anti-harassment training to those who manage employees. We’ve recently begun providing such training to individuals who work with freelancers and contractors as well. We take allegations, such as those that have appeared online this week, very seriously. When Monica Byrne contacted Scientific American a year ago, we investigated her report, offered the Company's apologies and Ms. Byrne acknowledged in her blog that...

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The fall of Pittsboro scientist and Scientific American blog editor Bora Zivkovic

Posted By on Fri, Oct 18, 2013 at 1:24 PM

Editor's note: I've been following this story all week, and as someone who has also endured sexual harassment, found it troubling, disappointing and disturbing. And, candidly, as a science geek, I was a big fan of Zivkovic's blog. I will post subjective, personal thoughts about this issue later on For What It's Worth, the INDY editor's blog. Bora Zivkovic, blogs editor for Scientific American and Pittsboro resident, is known, and until recently was widely respected, for promoting women in science—and science writing in general. But now he is notorious for something else: Sexual harassment. This week he resigned from...

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Sunday, October 13, 2013

He's full of it: Gov. McCrory's royal throne

Posted By on Sun, Oct 13, 2013 at 10:04 AM

Gov. Pat McCrory has decided against spending up to $230,000 in taxpayer funds remodeling bathrooms in his private living quarters at North Carolina's Executive Mansion. … A written estimate showed more than $100,000 of planned work to the master bathroom, including new marble, woodwork, bath fixtures and a ventilated water closet. —The Associated Press, Oct. 12, 2013 14,000: Number of homes in N.C. without indoor plumbing 6: Number of bathrooms in the living area of the governor's mansion $8,000–$15,000: Average cost to remodel or add a typical bathroom 29: Estimated number of households that could get indoor plumbing for...

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Saturday, October 12, 2013

Durham History Hub opens

Posted By on Sat, Oct 12, 2013 at 3:36 PM

We missed the butter-churning demonstration, but we made the parade. So get ye off the couch and down to the free grand opening of the Museum of Durham History is open until 5 p.m. today, with music, food trucks and other events. Regular hours begin Tuesday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., with extended times on Third Fridays. Admission is free. The museum is in the old DATA bus station, 500 W. Main St.—a great reuse for that building....

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Friday, October 11, 2013

Food Distribution task force calls mission "unclear"

Posted By on Fri, Oct 11, 2013 at 10:40 AM

Several members of Raleigh’s food distribution task force said they were unclear about the purpose of the group and still have questions about the ordinance that prohibits food distribution in city parks. Held Thursday night, the  meeting was the second of three before the task force will present recommendations to the City Council’s Law and Public Safety Committee on Nov. 26. Though the task’s force’s official charge is “to identify, evaluate and recommend alternatives for food distribution to the less fortunate,” many members have said they want to continue to be allowed to distribute food to the homeless in...

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28-year veteran of Wake County Sheriff's office announces candidacy

Posted By on Fri, Oct 11, 2013 at 8:37 AM

A former U.S. Army sergeant and 28-year-veteran of the Wake County Sheriff's Office, Willie Rowe, is announcing his candidacy for the county's top law enforcement post. He'll formally announce his 2014 election campaign for Wake County Sheriff this morning at 11 at 3009 Sanderford Road in Raleigh. Rowe, a Democrat, joined the sheriff's office as a deputy in 1985, after his honorable discharge from the Army. He worked as a deputy sheriff before being promoted to investigator, primarily in the drugs and vice unit. He was promoted to the rank of major in 2007 and took an early retirement...

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Thursday, October 10, 2013

State Auditor stands by Medicaid report

Posted By on Thu, Oct 10, 2013 at 5:38 PM

The state auditor's office is defending a Medicaid report issued in January, after a North Carolina Health News story reported that officials at the state Department of Health and Human Services provided auditor Beth Wood with misinformation. Wood wrote a letter to the Joint Legislative Oversight Committee of the Department of Health and Human Services that two stories published on the North Carolina Health News website “make misleading statements” about the Medicaid audit report. “The reports include erroneous information from the author, as well as misleading statements from a draft version of the Department of Health and Human Services...

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Wednesday, October 9, 2013

On shaky ground, Gov. McCrory proclaims Earthquake Preparedness Day

Posted By on Wed, Oct 9, 2013 at 2:48 PM

"The governor and I aren't even in the same party. If this turns out to be a false alarm, he'll make me out to be the biggest fool west of the Mississippi."— from Earthquake, a 1974 movie starring Charlton Heston. With a 35 percent approval rating, Gov. Pat McCrory is on shaky ground. Could this be why he declared Oct. 17 Earthquake Preparedness Day? Yes, with state agencies embroiled in pay scandals and administrative meltdowns, and North Carolina’s reputation as a social and financial backwater, McCrory is using his executive privilege to tell us to get ready for a …...

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Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Bell, Williams; Davis, Beasley advance in Durham primary

Posted By on Tue, Oct 8, 2013 at 9:14 PM

With 58 of 62 precincts reporting, Incumbent Mayor Bill Bell and challenger Sylvester Williams will advance to the November election. Bell has received 87 percent of the vote compared with Sylvester Williams at 7 percent. Michael Valentine placed third with 5.3 percent. In the City Council Ward II race, it appears Eddie Davis (59 percent of ballots cast) and Omar Beasley (21 percent) will face off in the general election. Four candidates vied for the top two spots in Ward II, the seat currently held by Howard Clement, who is retiring after 30 years. Del Mattioli (13 percent) and Franklin...

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Robinson wins in Cary; Smith a likely victor

Posted By on Tue, Oct 8, 2013 at 8:22 PM

Incumbent Jennifer Robinson has won another term to the Cary Town Council, beating 60 percent to 40 percent margin over challenger Karl Thor. This is according to unofficial results from all seven precincts in District A. In District C, Jack Smith has a commanding 1,500-vote lead over Deborah Pugh, with nine of 11 precincts reporting. Despite two bond referenda, Raleigh mayor and city council races, and contests for Wake County school board and Cary town council, voter turnout was only 14 percent....

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Gasland Part 2 premieres in Durham

Posted By on Tue, Oct 8, 2013 at 1:02 PM

Gasland filmmaker Josh Fox with his trusty banjo and gas mask. "Don't watch Gasland 2 alone," says Josh Fox. "It's too scary, kind of like Psycho. You'll never take a shower the same way again." Fox isn't kidding. His much-anticipated, anti-fracking sequel screened at Durham's Carolina Theatre Monday night, with many of its otherwise sterile interviews darkened with a chilling horror movie score. There's even a scene in which Fox's beloved Delaware River Basin near his Pennsylvania home is besieged by CGI gas wells as if they're asteroids from on high. Where's Morgan Freeman when you need him? Subtlety may...

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Who's buying Hofmann Forest?

Posted By on Tue, Oct 8, 2013 at 11:35 AM

The potential buyer of the 80,000-acre Hofmann Forest remains a mystery, more than two weeks after the N.C. State Board of Trustees was scheduled to approve the sale. The forest, which is owned by N.C. State University’s Board of Trustees of the Endowment Fund, is the largest single tract of state-owned property. It is home to an abundance of rare wildlife and plants and serves as a research site for forestry and environmental studies students at N.C. State. A coalition of professors, foresters, landowners and wildlife conservationists sued the Board of Trustees of the Endowment Fund of N.C. State and...

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Monday, October 7, 2013

Josh Fox to appear at Gasland Part 2 screening tonight in Durham

Posted By on Mon, Oct 7, 2013 at 8:00 AM

Josh Fox, who directed the first Gasland documentary, is scheduled to be in Durham tonight at a screening of Gasland Part 2. The event will be held from 7–10 p.m. at the Carolina Theatre, 309 W. Morgan St., Durham. It is sponsored by Clean Water for North Carolina and Working Films Reel Power. Donations benefit Frack Free NC Alliance. Released in 2010, Gasland is widely credited for exposing the dangers of fracking and jumpstarting the movement against the drilling practice. It was nominated for an Emmy for Best Documentary in 2011....

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Thursday, October 3, 2013

Environmental nonprofit: Fracking a "nightmare"

Posted By on Thu, Oct 3, 2013 at 2:44 PM

In case there isn't enough negative publicity surrounding fracking, left-leaning nonprofit Environment North Carolina released its own report on the controversial drilling practice Thursday, dubbing the drilling an "environmental nightmare." "In state after state, fracking polluted our air, water and landscapes," said Liz Kazal, a field associate for the Raleigh-based nonprofit. "If fracking is allowed in North Carolina, this is the kind of damage in store for waters like the Deep River." The drilling, viewed as an economic boon by proponents despite its speculative job-creating numbers, has been dogged by claims that it's responsible for water and air pollution, as...

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Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Durham citizens air policing grievances before Human Relations Commission

Posted By on Tue, Oct 1, 2013 at 9:58 PM

Approximately 100 Durham citizens gathered Tuesday evening at City Hall to voice concerns about racial disparities in police stops, car searches, frisks and misdemeanor drug charges. The public forum was held before the Durham Human Relations Commission at the request of Mayor Bill Bell. More than 15 citizens, activists and ministers addressed the 12-member panel to share stories of police behavior they believe is racially motivated and institutionalized within the department. Many speakers raised their voices, frustrated by what they perceive as an elephant in the room nobody seems willing to address.  "You know what's going on in this city....

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