Orange County

Create Green-Collar Jobs in Orange County

A few weeks ago I had the privilege of seeing Van Jones speak. He co-founded the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights and is founder and president of Green For All. He spoke convincingly of a future of increased equality and how one of the roads to this future is green jobs. Green-collar jobs are employment in the environmental or agricultural sectors of the economy. [Source: Wikipedia] But they also include any work that will help transform our society into a more environmentally sustainable one.

One way our local government leaders could participate in this national movement is to sign the Green Jobs Pledge. Its goal is to "rebuild American competitiveness and environmental leadership by growing a green economy that fights global warming, pollution and poverty at the same time." Here are the five steps this pledge asks our leaders to agree to:

  1. Commit to Action
  2. Create a Green-collar Jobs Taskforce
  3. Identify Goals and Assess Opportunities
  4. Create a Local Action Plan
  5. Evaluate, Leverage and Grow

Comment on Comprehensive Plan Now, Commissioners to Vote in Fall

Orange County Comprehensive Plan This fall, the Orange County Commissioners are scheduled to approve a new Comprehensive Plan; the first such vote in nearly thirty years! If you work, live or own land in Orange County, the Plan affects you; it sets a vision for how the county will develop over the next 20 years. Please take advantage of this once-in-a-generation opportunity to shape the future of Orange County by voicing your interests and concerns to the Orange County Planning Board and County Commissioners.

Once adopted, the new Comprehensive Plan will begin to impact decisions about our tax base, the kind of jobs and housing created in the county, where new development will occur, what that development will look like, and how we will move about the county.

The Orange Bus

I see that the BOCC has decided to rename OPT as The Orange Bus, with resultant web-site and advertising changes as well as painting all their vehicles OP-orange. As a side-note, perhaps OP should think about taking out some advertising on the buses. Commissioner Barry Jacobs was against the idea, according to OrangeChat, calling it "too precious" and saying that he thought OPT was just fine. C'mon Commissioner Jacobs, this is a web 2.0 world! I am totally in favor of OPT becoming The Orange Bus. First off, how many of you knew what OPT was the first time you heard the acronym? How many of you know what OPT actually does? But, The Orange Bus, that's easy to understand and by playing on the county name it becomes catchy.

This does raise a question in my mind though and that is, what changes will be made on the website to make it a better tool for potential customers. As it stands right now, I think most people have no idea what OPT does unless they are already using it. How will the website make this information more accessible? I had the opportunity just this morning to tell a coworker moving to Hillsborough about the Hill-to-Hill route - she had no idea that it existed and was very excited about the possibility of not driving every day. How will The Orange Bus get this information out to the public?

OWASA eyeing Jordan Lake water

Having just read this article ( I do not know how I feel about this issue. On one and Jordan Lake seems to be a rather large body of water. So, why not tap into it?

On the other hand, it is a fixed source of water and as I look around I see many people and institutions waste this precious resource (water). Let's use the water that we have responsibly first. Then, when we need more, tap into other sources. I am leaning towards this idea.

County Commissioner's Comp Plan Work Session

This Tuesday, June 10, the County Commissioners will hold a work session with the planning board to discuss the proposed comphrehensive plan update. The meeting begins at 7:30pm and will be held at the Link Government Services Center, 200 S. Cameron St., Hillsborough. The work session will be the first public meeting at which the commissioners will scrutinize the plan, which has been under development since October 2006 and runs nearly 300 pages. The commissioners decided to schedule the work session because they recognized the need to closely examine the proposal before they referred it to the county planning board for their recommendation. For more information see the county's comp plan website and the website of the Orange County Comprehensive Plan Coalition.


Tuesday, June 10, 2008 - 3:30pm


Link Government Services Center, 200 S. Cameron St., Hillsborough



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