March 2014

This Week in Orange Politics: March 10-16


Teacher contracts, traffic and and affordable housing can all be found on the agendas of Orange County’s elected bodies this week. The Carrboro Board of Alderperson will get an update on downtown traffic and discuss how to incentivize environmentally friendly developments, while  an affordable housing strategy will be before the Chapel Hill Town Council. In Hillsborough, the Town Board will consider approving several new developments,


Regular Meeting: Tuesday, March 11, 7:30 pm, Town Hall Board Room

Power Politics

A few days of no electricity restores the ability to think in complete sentences ... dare I suggest - even paragraphs?

My street - a mile-long cut-in near Camp New Hope- suffered a downed power line across the road. Very dangerous. Not only was the line down, the pole from whence it came was jutting out at about 45 degrees, as though it wanted to fall but lacked the nerve. It was falling not from ice, but from mud. The ground it sits on just off the road and up a few feet in elevation was giving way. Nerve wracking to drive under and scary to imagine it coming down. From Friday morning until yesterday (Sunday) afternoon, we watched and waited. Though Piedmont trucks were often nearby, we didn't see them in the neighborhood until yesterday afternoon. Not even to evaluate. No cones - nothing.

Process for Providing Sewer to Historic Rogers Road Moves Forward

On February 10, 2014 the Chapel Hill Town Council voted unanimously to pay their share of the preliminary engineering and surveying necessary to extend sewer to the historic Rogers Road Community (this would include 86 home lots). These activities are required for the extension of sewer regardless of whether the Chapel Hill Town Council moves forward with a utility district or ETJ. In addition to funding for this preliminary engineering work, the CHTC voted in favor of including funding for community outreach efforts to assist community members in learning about the preliminary engineering work and what it means to go forward with sewer hook-ups (see agenda item with link to staff memo here).


Orange county commissioner candidates forum hosted by orange Chatham sierra club Wed 3/26/14 7pm-9pm  Carrboro Town Hall Hope to see ya there. Gary Kahn

OP Candidate Forum: Carrboro Board of Aldermen Special Election

Our forum for the Carrboro Board of Aldermen special election will be moderated by local journalist Kirk Ross.

There are three candidates for one seat in this election: Talal Asad, Bethany Chaney, and Theresa Watson.

This forum will take place live right here on


Sunday, April 6, 2014 - 7:00pm to 9:00pm


OP Candidate Forum: Orange County School Board

Our forum for candidates for Orange County School Board will be moderated by former school board member Libbie Hough.

There are six candidates for four seats in this election: Greg Andrews, Tom Carr, Donna Coffey, Michael Hood, Brenda Stephens, and Rosa Williams.

This forum will take place live right here on


Sunday, April 13, 2014 - 7:00pm to 9:00pm


OP Candidate Forum: Orange County Board of Commissioners

Our forum for candidates for the Orange County Board of Commissioners (Democratic primary) will be moderated by local journalist Kirk Ross.

There are three separate elections for the Board of Commissioners:

At-LargeBonnie Hauser, Barry Jacobs

District 1: Mia Burroughs

District 2: Mark Marcoplos, Earl McKee 

This forum will take place live right here on


Sunday, April 27, 2014 - 7:00pm to 9:00pm


Orange County Democratic Party Sheriff Candidates Forum

The Orange County Democratic Party will host a 2014 Sheriff Candidates Forum on Wednesday, April 16th, at 6:30pm at the Chapel Hill Public Library, Meeting Room B. The forum will be moderated by OCDP Chair Matt Hughes and OCDP First Vice-Chair Susan Romaine.

There are six Democratic candidates running for Sheriff. No Repblicans have filed for Orange County Sheriff. The winner of the May Democratic primary will be unopposed in the general election in November.


Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - 6:30pm to 7:45pm


Chapel Hill Public Library (Meeting Room B), 100 Library Drive, Chapel Hill

Community Meeting: S. Greensboro St. Sidewalk in Carrboro

This meeting will be an opportunity to learn more about the current outlook for improving pedestrian safety and comfort on S. Greensboro St., including the construction of a sidewalk. Community members are invited to learn about the cost, funding, design opportunities and challenges, and benefits; discuss the project with Town staff, and provide comments.

  • 7:00pm - Informal drop-in session
  • 7:30pm - Presentation and Q&A
  • 8:00pm - Informal discussions
  • 9:00pm - Adjourn
To RSVP, provide a comment via phone or email, or ask for more information, contact Jeff Brubaker, Carrboro transportation planner, at or 919-918-7329. 



Wednesday, March 19, 2014 - 7:00pm to 9:00pm


Carrboro Town Hall, Room 110

Let's Create a County Database of Local Independent Businesses

Orange County commissioner candidate and local business owner Mark Marcoplos is proposing that the Orange County Economic Development Office create, maintain, and promote a database of the county’s local, independent businesses. Said Marcoplos: “Our local, independent businesses are the backbone of our economy. They provide the majority of business jobs while accounting for the biggest share of retail sales in the county. Additionally they help to bind our communities together. The government of Orange County should actively promote and support these businesses. To that end, we need a comprehensive database of local, independent businesses detailing the goods and services that each one provides.”

Marcoplos envisions a searchable database that residents could use to find providers of products and services in our local business community. With a strong, ongoing promotional effort, county residents could more easily find local businesses to meet their needs.



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