Ruby Sinreich's blog

How to make the Comprehensive Plan truly comprehensive

I've been encouraged to hear municipal staff and elected leaders in Chapel Hill talk about how broad, inclusive, and engaging they want the process of revising the Town's Comprehensive Plan to be. I've also seen some positive steps in this direction, but have also been frustrated about my inability to get information about what is going on with the process so far. Hopefully, this frustration will end when the public part of the process kicks off on September 27th (OP's birthday, coincidentally).

The town's "2020" web site lists ways that people can get involved including: Become a Stakeholder, Join a Working Group, Subscribe to our email list, Take a survey, Attend a Meeting, Tell someone about Chapel Hill 2020, and Tell us who's missing. This is a great start. I think this process is an opportunity to think more broadly about how to get residents more involved more effectively and creatively in our local government, and I bet we can think of some different formats and different venues for this to happen.

Vote Republican this Fall?

Many of you may assume - as I did - that all the elected officials in Orange County are registered as either Democrat or Unaffiliated voters. If so, then you would be wrong.

In the process of compiling information for a forthcoming spreadsheet of candidate information, I learned that Hillsborough Town Commissioner Evelyn Lloyd recently changed her registration from D to R. Just like that, we now have a Republican elected in Orange County - breaking many years of tradition. OK.

It's not unusual for one Republican to run in the lonely primary for County Commissioner in even years. Like it or not, it's understood that they will not be elected when put to a county-wide vote (especially since the Commissioners designed their district system to only barely change the status quo) but it's certainly their prerogative to run. It is even more Quixotic to run as a Republican in odd years when we elect our municipal leaders and our city school board.

Lots of openings on Orange County advisory boards

Info from the county below. Put your money where your mouths are, people!

Release Date: August 8, 2011
Contact:  Donna Baker, Clerk to the Board of Orange County Commissioners, 919-245-2130

Orange County Seeks Applicants for Boards and Commissions

ORANGE COUNTY, NC – One major way citizens can have a positive impact on the future of Orange County is to volunteer to serve on the various County advisory boards and commissions.

The Orange County Board of Commissioners is recruiting citizen volunteers for the following advisory boards. 


Filing Day Open Thread

Today at noon began the 14-day filing period for candidates running for any of the 21 seats that Damon told us about. We'll celebrate the end of filing with the next OP happy hour on July 15th in Hillsborough.

Think we'll see any surprises? 

BREAKING: Rioters arrested at Greenbridge

So remember last year when I said that the people threatening violence against Greenbridge were doing more harm than good? They made a bomb threat against the building while it was under construction. Did it make Greenbridge better or cheaper or more accessible? Did it help the developers better serve the community? Did it help the community combat the rising cost of living in Chapel Hill?  No, but it probably served to make a small group of activists feel better about themselves.

Yesterday, a group of anarchists entered the lobby of Greenbridge intent on destruction. The group of over 30 demonstrators were armed with an anvil, and proceeded to do major damage to the floor, a glass table, and several pieces of artwork. Eight people were arrested Several people were detained, and three were held on felony inciting a riot charges until they were released from the Orange County Jail on a total of $8,000 bond.*



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