Mayor Appoints Self to Downtown Corporation; Wicked Eyesore addressed

Last night the Chapel Hill Town Council appointed Mayor Kevin Foy to fill an open seat on the Chapel Hill Downtown Economic Development Corporation (CHDEDC). I have to admit, I think there is a real need for members with more political experience and community accountability on The Corporation, and the Mayor does have those assets.

However as a member of the elected body that appoints Corporation members, isn't this a potential conflict of interest? I'm afraid this step may only serve to muddy the waters, when we really need some clarity downtown.

Last night the Corporation's chair also petitioned the Council to condemn the Wicked Eyesore:

The [Wicked Burrito] building, at 214 W. Franklin St., vacant since January 2000, is owned by Lone Star Steakhouse & Saloon Inc. of Wichita, Kan.

Corporation members cited the lack of upkeep on the building as one reason to consider condemning it. The petition refers to the building as “a major downtown eyesore.”

But Lone Star Executive Vice President John White said the company has begun repairing the structure. A Lone Star representative assessed the building's state Thursday, White said.
- Daily Tarheel, 2/15/05

In their eagerness, the CHDEDC has overstepped the bounds of the law in the past. While we can all agree that change is needed here, I hope that this time the Corporation will consider appropriate legal solutions. They need to keep in mind their role as leaders and visionaries for downtown, not engineers.



[sarcasm alert]

I think Foy is a great choice because of his proven ability to learn. To whit:

On claiming that Roger Perry mislead the Town Council on Meadowmont home prices:

“Meadowmont was a bait and switch, I think, across the board. The town was sold one thing and got another.” Kevin Foy, 10/2001

On his confidence in Perry despite the latter's conflict of interest serving on the DEDC while he is seeking multi-million dollar development opportunities downtown:

“Roger knows what to expect from this council and what the community expects of development.” Kevin Foy, 2/2005

I was kidding someone the other night about Mr. Perry's crass commercial vision for Chapel Hill, in the context of discussing his hand in downtown development, UNC's development and the development of the University Inn, and suggested we just be done with it and rename our town Perry'sville.

I just about gagged last night when Dorothy Verkerk pointed out how wonderful it was that Perry's Meadowmont preserved the pasture as an ode to the past (she was commenting on how sad it'll be to trash the view of the '30s house down 15-501 way when the new Wilson Assemblage development goes in...).

What a strange twist of memory she has... I recall that Meadowmont wasn't supposed to be visible from 54, that there was no frickin' Iron Curtain type wall cutting into that pasture's beautiful hill and that there wouldn't be a huge, confusing "Welcome to Meadowmont" sign trashing up the 54 corridor. Funny how all those things went by the wayside (just like the promised greenway from Southern village to town over/under Fordham went by the wayside).

If Meadowmont is Ms. Verkerk's idea of a deal well made, I can't wait to see her shower accolades on the next Perrysville travesty.

It's a wonderful life we live here in Chapel Hill....whoops...I mean Perrysville.

Got to give DV her props when it comes to some things. From todays Chapel Hill News
( ), Verkerk expressed her opposition to tatooing beer kegs:

"Verkerk said the keg registration is casting too wide a net, collecting information on everyone in targeting a select group."

It's been interesting to observe the somewhat cynical cultivation of this teen drinking issue by some of the local politicos

It's pretty obvious this is going to be an element of the 2005 election - we'll probably hear some more proposals - some more or less draconian than the tatooed keg - in the run up to fall (to be
added to the "impropriety" of showing which political party you belong to, the woeful "wrongfulness" of standing up for everyone's rights and, of course my favorite, the reinstitution of RLCs
[just in time to have to pony up the missing fines to our school district]).

I wonder if these putative candidates will restrain themselves from claiming current incumbents are "soft on drinking"?

Time will tell....

Good point, Will. I'd intended to headline an item on this "Ward crashes Verkerk's party... or is it vice versa." But Dorothy let the cat out of the bag when she said "I really don't want the government to know that I've got 13 kegs of beer." If we'd all just admit our keg holdings then we wouldn't need government intrusions. [On a related note, I had the foresight to unload my Cat Stevens albums back in the 1980s]

Ward's reply is kind of scary "If everybody behaved themselves, we wouldn't need this kind of oversight. I would be willing to give up a little bit of my anonymity in order to provide a greater level of safety... " Ward sounds like a true Ashcroft Democrat.

Ward has really bought into this right-wing police crack-down model for addressing teen drinking. At a recent council meeting, he fawned over its proponents.

Who knew when the Republicans bashed H. Clinton's "it takes a village" approach that what they really had in mind was "it takes a police department."

Back to point, Verkerk was right on when she said "a lot of it needs to be laid on the doorsteps of parents. I plan, for the next 10 years, to be at home on Friday nights. That's just what I have to do." But, will those 13 kegs keep that long?

While you may not like the idea of barcoding kegs, you still have to admit that teenage drinking is a serious problem. It's a problem that has developed under the watch of parents. So what's the real issue? Government shouldn't be involved in this problem at all or it should find other solutions? To me, government's role is to protect those who can't protect themselves, in this case, teenagers who are subject to rampant advertising and high levels of pressure from school (see several previous forums), parents, etc. There's a fine line between intrusion and protection.

It's interesting how Ward and company seem so earnest in their efforts to protect us from ourselves. I guess him, Clapp and company won't rest until we've converted Chapel Hill into a nannydom, a modern day gulag shorn of all those niggling rights and responsibilities we (as a people) used to love and honor so much.

Rather than expecting or taking corrective actions - like lengthening yellows at an intersection or encouraging parents to monitor their childrens behavior, he reaches first for the punitive.

I think DV did well when she pointed out that personal responsibility is what's called for....I'm guessing that DV will raise kids that will also take personal responsibility for their actions and won't need the threat of punishment to act appropriately. They'll internalize her values of personal responsibility.

On the other hand, in Ward's world, you do or don't do things because "Big Papa" will whip you if you don't act responsibly. I guess he feels, from his high perch on the council, we're all irresponsible brutes that need the calming touch of the whip to coerce righteous behavior.

What a brave, new world Ward and his claptrap posse want to create...

So Will, by the logic you've just expressed, we don't need environmental protection, public health services, welfare, etc. How do you make your choices about where government should 'interfere' and where it is protecting the public commons?

We've had at least one, maybe two, other discussions about underage drinking on this forum. It's a complicated problem and I think it deserves the Council's attention. The discussion Will is referring to, in which Jim Ward introduced the idea of the barcode, was quite brief; I'm not sure whether it was an extension of previous discussion or a new topic first being introduced. Instead of criticizing Jim, I think we should first learn more about keg registration. Here's some references for those who are interested:

As to the keg registration--I asked my HS Junior how prevalent kegs were at parties. He just laughed. He says kids have more luck convincing older siblings/friends to buy cases of beer, or stealing from their parent's liqour cabinets. He knew of ONE party (which he hadn't attended) where the dad had purchased a keg--and the dad got arrested for contributing to the delinquency of minors for the incident. (This made the police blotter...something all parents of teens should read. VERY informative.)

There's a reason my kid has an 11:00 PM curfew. And I don't leave him "home alone" for the weekend. And I call parents and make certain they are home before he attends parties. Does this mean I think alcohol has never touched his lips? Do I LOOK stupid? It just means I have MINIMIZED, to the best of my ability, his opportunities. And honestly, I don't think we can do much more. Anyone else remember being 17?

From a civil liberties standpoint I'm against keg registration. I see Dorothy's point...and I can see problems if the barcodes don't get changed like they are supposed to. (Ever had the library accuse you of not returning a book--when you have? It happens!) From a PRACTICAL stand point I don't think it will make much of a difference. Now, if we were cracking down on underage drinking in FRATS--that might be another story. But HS drinking? The parties I've heard of have all been "throw downs" kegs involved.

I'd like to see all this effort go to convincing parents to stay home (or make an early evening of it) until their kids are through HS. My husband and I are home by 11. ( How else are we gonna know if the kid breaks curfew?) So long as there are woods and fields, there will be parties...but it isn't NEARLY as comfortable. Or as easy.

It sure would be nice if some could discuss proposed policy options as they should be, rather than trying to make the proposals about the assumed motives or diabolical desires they believe that some elected councilperson might have.

Any who think this is “solved” by monitoring you children's behavior probably haven't raised teens. It takes a lot more than monitoring. Underage age kids get the kegs from legal age friends. Registration has some real impact.

Before dismissing the idea out of hand, at least look at the potential benefits of this. It might solve a real problem that we as a community have, a real problem some are quite willing just to ignore.


I'm on teen number two--I was just pointing out that the TEENS don't use kegs. "It's WAY easier to get cases--and there's less spillage." Direct quote.

Money isn't that much of an object in this town. If there are studies that show that it helps solve a problem (and I, for one, ADMIT that there is a problem) then I'll consider it. I'm just against doing something "just to be doing something." If it will help solve the problem, GREAT. I still think more parental monitoring would help. Every party that I've heard about getting busted (and I hear about manyof them!) has been at a home where the parents were GONE...with the exception of the party noted in my previous post. OR an apartment of a child whose parents live outside the city limits...but want their kid to attend school.

I'll go look at Terri's sites...


Two things: first, all of the underage drinking is not done by high schoolers. A drunk underage post-hs student (college or whatever) can kill people with a car while driving drunk too.

Second, whoever is underage and getting the kegs, (and it doesn't matter to me whether they are in hs or college) there's a way to get at the problem that should at least be examined and discussed, and not dismissed so quickly or with so much sarcasm. I'm told that kegs are a choice for some of our underage drinkers, so I guess it matters just who you are talking to.

Today's N&O article points out that Madison, WI has this law in effect (as well as 24 states). Madison did it in the absence of a state law, btw. Wasn't Madison the place where some people here loved their lobbying control law? I guess you just have to carefully pick and choose which assaults on our "freedoms" one is willing to tolerate.

Melanie, you are dead right about the unintended consequences of this policy.

Besides the issues you raised as far as penalizing the wrong individual, etc., there are several others, including some
4th Amendment issues.

ACLU Condemns New Beer Keg Rules in Ohio As Assault on Privacy, Due Process Rights

"We are keeping our options open," said Christine Link, Executive Director of the ACLU of Ohio. "This is serious business, and the state should know that we are prepared to take it seriously."

"These regulations effectively require citizens to sign away their right to be free from otherwise unlawful police searches in exchange for the opportunity to buy beer in quantity, which is, let's remember, a perfectly lawful activity," she added.

The Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution imposes limits on the ability of police and other law enforcement agents to enter the homes of citizens or conduct searches on private property. Over the last twenty years, court decisions have severely limited Fourth Amendment rights. But in recent years, the United States Supreme Court has begun to more firmly limit the scope of police searches allowed by the Constitution.


At a recent unmonitored teen party in Melanie's neighborhood, some of the kids asked an 8 and 9 year-old if they wanted to drink some of their vodka - which seem to be the dominant drink of the night.

Fred--I agree with you about the underage drinking not ALL being done by HSers--but I saw Jim Ward put forth this suggestion, and it was framed as a way to limit HS drinking.

As to the party that happened in "my" neighborhood--if it was the one last fall--that got dealt with--and my kid wasn't involved. In fact, he was irritated with the stupidity of the whole scene when he heard about it later. All the kids involved got "caught" and most of them got grounded. Other than that--hey, there are 10 acres of woods back there, none of it belongs to us, and a LOT of teen aged kids in this general area. They don't do anything here--'cause if I catch 'em at anything they're banned from the house, and they like the food too much--but I can't vouch for ANY of 'em once they are off my property.

Fred, you wanted an alternative? I think Melanie has laid out an excellent case for corrective action that relied on parental involvement.

No over reaching "wide net" (to quote DV) required.

Melanie, we have a park at the Woodleaf St. enterance to North Haven that is a very popular hang out spot for those wishing to use/do whatever because it is difficult to get "surprised." The police swing by and try to create a visable presence, but it's still on the top ten sites list.

Also, we need to remember all of the kids here who don't go to the two CHCCS HS. This, I'm told accounts for some of the norms and behaviors that differ from set to set.

Will, I am all for corrective action by parents - been there, done that with our two. But remember, your kids can be in the wrong place at the wrong time and even unaware of the illegal behaviors going on until they get busted two. All I'm saying is that this proposal is worth a conversation before we dismiss it. And wasn't the ACLU against most of these lobbying control laws?

Fred--I wasn't being sarcastic--sorry it came across that way. As to the different "norms"--the Waldorf kids and Friends kids party pretty hard too. (Sometimes it feels like I'm running an unofficial youth hostel over here...)

And I agree that anyone can get caught in the wrong place at the wrong time--one reason my kid has an early curfew. Most parties don't get "busted" until after 11:00 PM when the noise ordinance kicks in. As to other illicit substances--the one thing I preach to ALL the kids that hang here is the consequences. DO they REALLY want to limit their opportunities? Keep themselves from student loans? Out of law school? 'Cause a drug conviction can do ALL of that.

Fred--if you have any additional suggestions--I'm all ears!

I'm not dismissing the ordinance out of hand--but most of the sites I've found don't have any hard statistics to back up the idea that registering kegs makes any difference whatsoever. One of the articles Terri sited, in fact, says that it DOESN'T. (The last one--I think...)

If you come up with some that do...please list them.

Hey---how did we get from the Wicked Burrito to teen drinking? The idea that the council was trying to overstep their bounds? We do tend to wander afield, don't we?

I wonder if the people of Chapel Hill started writing Lone Star and e-mailing them if it would make any difference?

Melanie, someone (brilliant) suggested we write letters to the editors of the Wichita, Kansas papers (where Lonestar is headquartered). It would be helpful if our elected officials, town luminaries and "the common" citizen ask if the people of Wichita would like their hometown company to do the same was suggested (again, brilliantly) that the papers would find an opportunity to amplify the story beyond the letters.

Heres some contact info:

Lone Star Steakhouse -

224 East Douglas, Suite 700
Wichita, KS 67202
Phone: (316) 264-8899
Fax: (316) 264-5988

William Greene, Jr. Chairman
Jamie Coulter Chief Exec. Officer

Wichita Chamber of Commerce -


The Sunflower - Wichita State -

Sunflower offices: Eliott Hall : 019 Phone: 316-978-3640
Fax: 316-978-3778

Mailing address:

1845 N. Fairmount
Wichita, KS 67260-0134

Editor in Chief 978-6905
Courtney Cloyd

Web Editor
Justin C. Lauzet

Wichita Eagle -

Reader Views
The Wichita Eagle
P.O. Box 820
Wichita, Kan. 67201

Fax: Call (316) 269-6799

Wichita Business Journal -

Wichita Business Journal
110 S Main
Suite 200
Wichita, KS 67202
Phone: 316-267-6406
Fax: 316-267-8570

We invite letters to the editor.

Kansas City newspapers:

Some other media links:

Here's another couple of references (one is a search page with multiple references). What I learned today is that there are, as Fred says, 23 states with keg registration laws, but those laws need to be grounded in a larger overall strategy for reducing underage drinking.

While I understand and appreciate Will's concern over even more encroachment on civil liberties, I think this may be such a significant 'societal' problem that we need to keep all options open. Constructive problem solving is most successful when it can be done without barriers. Limitations come in after brainstorming.

Melanie, you are not the one being sarcastic or the one who dismissed it out of hand.

I do see a sad relationship between income/social statuses and the different number of bites of the apple that some kids are allowed. I guess I can only go with the "don't ruin their future" argument when the standards are not specific or clearly articulated. Remember the TV line "if you can't do the time, don't do the crime?" This is a crime and it is getting more serious. I also reject the rite of passage approach; I've sat with parents of kids who lost a child or had a child injured in an alcohol related accident.

As for "different norms," I meant party preferences by different groups, things like cans vs. kegs, drugs, etc.

We also had an early curfew for ours and routinely called the parents of the person having the party. Showing trust went a long way, as well as talking openly about these things. It's a great feeling when you get them out on their own with only a "minor" crisis here and there along the way.

Our major "crisis" occurred not at a local party, but on a senior class trip to Ocean City, MD. The principal, being a former science teacher, just wouldn't accept that the keg he found on his surprise room check got in the bathtub of a four-boy room by coming up the drain. Since none of the four could "explain" its presence, all were expelled for a week a month before graduation - truly an important week. Of course, that ended up being the easier punishment; Mom-supervised hard labor truly enhanced communications and as a bonus, the other teen has the chance to learn vicariously!

About ten years later, we were talking about this and I just outright asked how the keg got there. It turned out that a friend (over 21) of one of the boys delivered it and the ice to the room's bathtub while they were out because someone had done the same for him and his buds on their trip. Traditions!

The school board dropped the long tradition of an Ocean City senior class trip because of liability issues not covered in the generic policy - they were unwilling to buy additional insurance to cover the adult chaperones; some staff and some parents.

Fred--I hear you. When someone asks how things are going, I reply:

"Haven't heard from the police. Haven't heard from the principal. He doesn't break curfew, and the grades are good. 15 months until he leaves for college--and then he is his own responsibility." At some point, all we can do is give them the tools, give them the means to SAY "no" without looking stupid to their friends (hence that early curfew!), and pray. A lot.

Will--thanks for the contact info. As soon as I've recovered from our production of "The Music Man"--a fundraising benefit for the Friederich's Ataxia Research Alliance--I;ll start writing letters. Give me a week or so.


Music Man will be performed at the United Church of Chapel Hill on Friday February 18th and Saturday February 19th. 8:00 PM curtain time. Perforamnce is free, but we do collect a "free will offering" to benefit FARA. Seating is first come first seated--Ithink we'll be crowded this weekend, so come early and bring a book. We are half-way to our stated goal of $76,000. ($1000 for each trombone.) Here is a page that will get you LOTS of info:

Last weekend's performances were great--with half the cast down with that upper-respiratory virus that's going around. My HS kid is playing Marcellus Washburn--it's kept him out of trouble for the last three months!

The Chapel Hill News today opines that the Foy appointment entails a serious conflict of interest. What if, they ask, the DEDC is lending support to developers seeking favorable action from the town. The News in this case overlooks the more fundamental problem: an organization that gets most of its funding from the town should not be lending support in such cases to begin with. Such advocacy should be considered far beyond the purview of the DEDC.

The News is also concerned about areas in which the town may be part of the problem. With Foy on board, how can the DEDC be part of the solution? They are correct but overlook the other half of the question: what if the university is part of the problem (e.g. student stores competing with downtown merchants)? With two UNC officials on the board, where is the objectivity?

The unfortunate fact is that the DEDC is structurally a mess. It is neither independent nor accountable. It is ridden with potential conflicts of interest. And, its mission is utterly vague. It is no accident that its board spent their first six months in ham-handed efforts to deal with minutia. Hopefully they will stumble toward some success. The hiring of the right director will surely help. But don't expect the questions surrounding this entity to go away any time soon.

Let me add that, while I agree with some of the News' criticism, I don't necessarily agree with their rejection of the Foy appointment. If Foy is ready to truly engage with DEDC, he could help get it on a sounder footing. As Cam Hill told the News, the DEDC is "his [Foy's] baby. He wants to make sure it rights itself." The problems associated with Foy's appointment will be minimized if, as Hill believes, he doesn't stay on the board for long.

The Wicked Burrito is being repainted as I type. Don't breathe a sigh of relief;the painters spent the morning marching the old colors... (see blog article)

A quick comment on the "open" CHDEDC meeting this morning.

The meeting was well attended and moved quickly through the agenda. It was interesting that Mayor Foy arrived just after the committee voted to endorse Joe Patterson's conversion of 213 E. Franklin Street's Village Apartments into more valuable real estate (15 condos I believe). Considering that Mr. Patterson might have to appear before the council on this project, Mayor Foy's tardiness was fortuitous. I wonder how he'll handle a similar situation - will he excuse himself?

Along those lines, there was some discussion of what criteria would be used to determine if CHDEDC would endorse a project. A discussion which occurred AFTER the Patterson endorsement. When I had an opportunity to comment, I suggested that one glaring omission to their criteria involves disclosure by board members of their relationship to or participation in a project seeking the CHDEDC's endorsement.
A very strange lapse considering the board's recent difficulties. Maybe they can adopt the strong ethical guidelines that Councilwoman Greene originally proposed for the council or, at least, the current
watered down policy.

I followed this by suggesting the CHDEDC post agendas and minutes in a timely fashion on their website. It would be a good start to remediate the harm caused by
the bad press they got for their initial attempt to close their proceedings.

BTW, I was there to do a short spiel on municipal, community-based networking and WiFi. I'm hoping that the town's Technology Board, the CHDEDC, the school's and UNC can team
up to get ubiquitous connectivity out there before TimeWarner, Bellsouth, et. al. squash it in the legislature.

Thanks, Will, for reporting on this meeting.

If the DEDC advocates ("endorses") for Patterson before the Council, then it is hard to see that the town should not remove its funding. To do otherwise strikes me as the height of corruption. I am very surprised that Foy is (at least by his inaction) supporting this.

The biggest problem facing downtown has probably been the negative attitudes and kvetching of the business owners there. Where else did the agenda you report on the other thread come from?

Parking? An article in today's CHN once again reminds us that there's plenty. Transients? None are more transient than the students, downtown's bread and butter. Not welcoming enough? They might take a look at the photos on their own web site which show the lively downtown scene you find at least whenever UNC is in session.

In case it wasn't clear, Mayor Foy was not there when the endorsement was made, though he might've been aware that it would be on the agenda. Mr. Patterson was thanked for allowing the commission to reschedule the presentation as the first item, but I wasn't there early enough to hear if it had been specifically rescheduled to avoid any conflict due to Mayor Foy's presence. In any case, Mayor Foy was welcomed as a member well after the presentation.

That said, I found it strange that a developer would make a plea for assistance before this quasi-governmental group and, stranger yet, that the group would endorse a particular development.

What if, for instance, East-West had secured a place on the short list of #2/#5 parking lot developers? It would take some torturous logic to create a scenario where East-West could lobby the DEDC to endorse its vision of the development without creating an ethical problem for the commission members.

What if East-West DID have the best vision for downtown and just needed a leg up before the council? I could see someone arguing that it was acceptable for DEDC to endorse the best vision - we want the best for downtown, right? Except, of course, this would present an ethical lapse, similar in nature and scope to the ACS/Verkerk lapse, of supporting a company with business before the council through a back channel - in this case DEDC.

Again, it was somewhat worrisome that no one suggested that board members reveal their participation in or relationship to projects asking for endorsement. We already recognize that Ms. Suttenfield and Mr. Perry have downtown agendas that will be implemented by projects that certainly will seek the DEDC's seal of approval. Did they plan to reveal the extent of their participation in these projects? Would they reveal indirect relationships they have with the developers of these projects? The DEDC is already struggling because of accountability issues, they should've recognized that transparency in their operations was the best way to strengthen their credibility. Given that, even the perception of self-dealing should've been avoided.

Dan, as you know, I like Mayor Foy and I think that he's been able to "manage" some rather difficult issues passing through the Council. Based on the clear-headed suggestions he made this morning, for instance on narrowing the scope of some of the CHDEDC's activities, I fully expect that he'll apply the same commonsensical approach to rectifying or eliminating DEDC's endorsement process. He just joined the group, so, I imagine, didn't have time to recognize the endorsement problem and raise an objection to this DEDC process.

One last point. If Mayor Foy or Mr. Perry or Ms. Suttenfield want to endorse any project in town, whether as individuals or as members of the Rotary/Chamber of Commerce/Royal Order of Elks/Wicca/etc., then that's great. Heck, it's the American way.

My concern is that the DEDC is a quasi-governmental organization, sponsored and funded by two governmental entities, UNC and the Town. As such, it has a distinctly different set of rules it should operate under. For instance, unlike the Masons, where secrecy is an age old tradition, the DEDC needs to bathe itself in the antiseptic glow of sunshine.

Thanks to Rob Shapard, from the Herald Sun, we have an answer on Mayor Foy's participation.

"Foy said afterward that he plans to take a similar approach on any such proposals that ultimately would go to the council for a vote. He said he would either stay out of the room when the corporation's board considers such proposals, or formally ask to recuse himself on those items."

I think that's a reasonable approach for Mayor Foy if the DEDC is going to continue to endorse specific projects. Now, if they'll add the disclosure rule (and keep good minutes of the meeting), the public can have a halfway decent chance of determining how "altruistic" a particular vote might be....

I stumbled a cross a delightful quote in a DTH article on East-West Partners being dropped from list of developers under consideration for the lot2&5 redevelopment:

“That is a disgusting piece of architecture,” Mayor Pro Tem Edith Wiggins said of Meadowmont. “If they repeat that downtown, I think we should just pack up.”

Now, I can only think of three explanations for this:
1) it's a misquote
2) Wiggins is off her meds (just kidding!!!)
3) relieved of the pressures of a 2005 reelection campaign, Wiggins at last feels free to speak her mind.

Try a fourth: it is a total error. Those who were in the meeting will tell you that Dorothy Verkerk made the statement, not Edith Wiggins.

I know that it might disappoint, but stay tuned for the DTH correction.

Actually, Fred, that was choice #1. No disappointment in this corner. The quote does have a Verkerkian ring to it.

I guess in my experience, when you misquote someone, you get what the person said wrong. When you attribute the words to the wrong person, you made an error.

Damn, Fred and Dan, can't you agree on anything??? ;-}

I also suspect the DTH's patented Distracted Reporter Filter in which quotations come out sounding as if they had been said by an 18-year old.

And it's not clear whether she was referring to Meadowmont or the architect Perry was working with.

Fred wins! According to today's DTH, it was both an error and a misattribution:

Due to a reporting error, the Feb. 24 article “Town Council whittles down list of developers” misattributed a quote to council member Edith Wiggins. The quote — “That is a disgusting piece of architecture. If they repeat that downtown, I think we should just pack up,” in reference to the Meadowmont development off N.C. 54 — was spoken by council member Dorothy Verkerk.

According to the Herald-Sun, East West will be included.


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