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Archive for January 4th, 2013

Controversial WSFCS board appt.

Following ‘rancorous’ discussion and debate, the Forsyth County Board of Commissioners appointed ‘conservative homemaker’ Irene May to the Winston-Salem-Forsyth County Board Education. May will fill the seat formerly held by chairman Donny Lambeth, who was elected in November to the state House of Representatives.

May was picked by a ‘bare majority’ on the seven-member board. While four Republicans voted for May, one Republican —Commissioner Dave Plyler —voted for another nominee Democratic commissioners — Walter Marshall and Everette Witherspoon— voted for a third nominee.

May –who has spoken out against the systems thinking method being employed by WSFCS in some schools, was not the first choice of the executive committee of the Fortsyth County Republican Party. The first choice was Winston-Salem resident David Regnery. However, Regnery removed himself from consideration after the Winston-Salem Journal —after being tipped by a “source who declined to be identified because he did not want to upset the local gun community”—- raised questions about Regnery’s possible ownership of an ‘assault-type’ weapon.

The Journal was unable to establish whether or not Regnery indeed own an assault weapon or even if he had a permit.
During the debate, Marshall did not raise Regnery’s possible permit, but simply his “ability to use handguns.” Evidently that’s enough of a disqualifier for him.

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Gov. McCrory: The big question

Given his history as mayor of Charlotte, you have to wonder —-or at least I do —whether or not Gov-elect Pat McCrory will lobby for state funding for a multibillion-dollar rail transit plan in the Triangle:

“If they meet the same criteria that I asked for when I was mayor of Charlotte regarding federal match, and also if they meet the ridership potential, and the right land use, I will be working with my secretary [of transportation] to support those types of efforts,” McCrory said during a news conference to name his final three cabinet secretaries.

“But regardless of where you put roads or transit, they have to meet certain criteria before they have my support, and, I assume, the support of the Department of Transportation,” McCrory said.

As a Raleigh native who spends a fair amount of time in the Triangle, I’d say there’s no way the area can support such a rail system. But don’t listen to me, not that you would anyway:

“I suppose his words are cautious,” said David Hartgen, emeritus professor of transportation studies at UNC Charlotte. He is author of a study concluding that the Triangle project would not reduce vehicle congestion or travel time, the very benefits supporters tout in seeking the outlay needed to fund the project.

“He’s not saying no, he’s not saying yes. I think that’s an appropriate thing at this point” since the governor-elect does not have a study before him to analyze, Hartgen said.

“Regional travel is growing so rapidly the only solution is to increase highway capacity,” Hartgen said. “We can’t go back to a mode of travel that is twice as slow.”

Then there’s the federal government, which Hartgen says has established new criteria for transit projects, including “cost-effectiveness, local support, and economic development.” The Triangle’s project, in his opinion, “does not score as well as other proposals nationally.”

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Gboro Jaycees under investigation

The N&R reports. President-elect Donnell ‘DJ’ Hardy is the focus of the investigation, which began after the “group found evidence that Hardy used ‘Jaycee funds for his personal expenses.'”

It’s worth noting that Hardy has been a candidate for Greensboro City Council.

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