George C's blog

Is This What We've Come To?

Unless you've been on vacation for the last 10 days or so you should be quite aware of the controversial action of the Chapel Hill Town Council (by a 8-1 vote) granting themselves a health care benefit usually associated with long-term service. I'm sure readers of this site have by now made up their minds as to the appropriateness of this action so I need not concern myself with that. I would hope that readers are also aware that the Council members who voted in favor of this benefit quickly realized that they had erred, if not in substance, at least in process, and quickly reversed their decision. Even before they had voted to reverse their decision they were inundated with voice mails and emails, some apparently quite nasty and distastetful, expressing their displeasure over the Council actions.

What's Happening with Regional Transit?

The Special Transit Advisory Commission (STAC), appointed by the two Metropolitan Planning organizations (Capitol Area MPO and Durham-Chapel Hill-Carrboro MPO) is close to finishing up its work after nearly a year and 15 meetings to date. This has been a longer process than I think most initially envisioned (it was originally scheduled to be completed by October 2007) due to the amount and complexity of data that had to be reviewed, the different backgrounds of the 29 official members, and the thoroughness of the discussions that ensued.

The STAC members hope to approve a final draft of their report at their meeting on April 25th. The most recent (2nd) draft of this report can be obtained at

Is Every Crime A Life Sentence? Is the Debt to Society Ever Paid?

Today, in a news report by WRAL's Cullen Browder, posted on, House Speaker Joe Hackney was "linked" to convicted felon Bladen County business man Ron Taylor by the fact that his name appeared below Taylor's on an invitation to a political fundraiser. Taylor was convicted in 1982 of accepting a bribe while serving in the statehouse and also pleaded guilty of plotting to setting a rival's tobacco warehouse on fire.

Chris Fitzsimon, executive director of government watchdog group NC Policy Watch, was quoted as saying "It's a little troubling that, in this era of public mistrust of government and all the ethics scandals, that our leaders wouldn't be a little more careful about where their name is used."

Speaker Hackney says he plans to uphold his promise and attend the fundraiser.

Carolina North - The First Phase Soon To Begin

Soon we'll be entering a new phase of what some might call the never-ending saga of Carolina North. The last I had heard the University will be presenting its concept plan for the Innovation Center, the first building proposed to be built on Carolina North, at the September 19th meeting of the town of Chapel Hill's Community Design Commission (CDC).



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