Month: June 2014

I-77 HOT lanes: A bargain or a $400M gamble?

A new “public-private partnership” in North Carolina appears to put hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars at risk while guaranteeing profit for a company that has run into trouble in other states. The North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) announced in April that it had selected a contractor to take on the task of widening the congested 26-mile corridor of I-77 north of Charlotte. The project calls for the addition of a high-occupancy/toll (HOT) lane and the conversion of the existing high-occupancy vehicle (HOV) lane into another HOT lane. Cintra Infraestructures, a Spanish company, was selected to design, build, and maintain the improved roadway – and collect the tolls. The term of the contract is 50 years.

Music, murder and more for your summer reading

Have you made a list of books to read on your summer vacation? Here are some North Carolina books for that list. UNC-Wilmington’s Clyde Edgerton’s “Night Train” came out three years ago and remains a favorite because it takes me back to my growing up years. Two friends, both teenaged boys, live in Starke, a fictional eastern North Carolina town, in the early 1960s. One, Larry Lime Nolan, is black, and he wants to play jazz like Thelonious Monk. The other, Dwayne Hallston, is white, and he wants to be another James Brown. They have much in common, but rules of the segregated South put roadblocks in the way of their friendship.

Related:
NC Book Watch

The Republicans’ best choice for 2016

Romney for President. Get used to the idea. Again. But, you say, Mitt Romney has made it clear that he is not interested in running again. He is a two-time loser, which makes him damaged property. And the far-right wing of the party was never happy wit…

Chatham deputies make arrest in Governor’s Club breakins

On Thursday, June 12, 2014 investigators from the Chatham County Sheriff’s Office, in conjunction with Chapel Hill police department and Orange County Sheriff’s Office made an arrest for two residential break-ins that occurred at the Governor’s Club in March 2014. The incidents occurred on Iredell and on Stokes within the gated community.

Why the State should sell Jennette’s pier

The NC House budget included a provision for the state to sell the controversial Jennette’s pier located in Nags Head. The pier opened three years ago after the 2009 legislature approved $25 million to fund its construction. House legislators say this move could generate revenue for the state to help other priorities – including the Clean Water Management Trust Fund. Selling the pier is a good idea, and Civitas applauds efforts for the state government to sell off its non-essential assets.

Virginia Cross Elementary’s Wendi Pillars is finalist for All-Star Teachers program

Wendi Pillars, an ESL teacher at Virginia Cross Elementary (VCE) in Siler City, has been selected as a finalist for the MLB, Target and Time, Inc.’s ‘People’ launch “All-Star Teachers” program, which is part of the MLB’s effort to celebrate teachers and raise awareness about the importance of education. 30 winning teachers will be recognized at the pre-game ceremony of the 2014 MLB All-Star game on July 15, 2014 on FOX, with a winner featured in PEOPLE magazine.