Comment and analysis on all things CharlotteRSS

Friday, October, 31 2014

The Hornets are back

And with a name change, Charlotte’s current NBA franchise is generating a lot more buzz (sorry) than it ever did when called the Bobcats. For that excitement to continue, the current Hornets will have to perform like the Hornets of old rather than the Bobcats — that is to say, put a consistently competitive product […]

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Bicyclist deaths

Bruce Siceloff of the Raleigh News & Observer has an interesting column out on bicyclist deaths. Some takeaway points: • Bicycles are very much an adult item these days: In 2012, 84 percent of all cyclists killed were age 20 or above. • “More than two-thirds of the cyclists killed each year were not wearing […]

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The bizarreness of incentives, Texas style

It’s race week in Austin, TX — and that means Formula 1, not NASCAR, at the three-year old Circuit of the Americas. Right of time, Motorsports offers up a look at the tracks financial situation, which might best be described as “complicated.” On the one hard, CotA is claiming vast economic impact figures — 9,100 […]

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Chiquita sold to Brazilian companies

Charlotte impact: Unknown. Whether the city, county, and state will recoup the $22 million in incentives promised to the company: Unknown. Whether the city, county, or state will change their incentives policy after luring a sick company that was then sold to foreign investors three years later: unlikely. The goal of the Great Economic Development […]

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I-485 completition delayed

Imagine that, a major highway project opening behind schedule. In any case, N.C. Department of Transportation officials are now saying that the final 5.7-mile stretch of I-485 in northeast Mecklenburg County won’t now open until the spring instead of in December as previously thought.

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Visit the Meck Deck »

Charlotte's Greatest Hits

Black got sweetheart deal

As jailed former state House Speaker Jim Black mounts a campaign for early release, critics contend that the state justice system did favors for Black regarding the settlement of his $1 million fine.

Questions about Black settlement

Wake County officials say imprisoned former House Speaker Jim Black satisfied a $1 million fine by surrendering some Mecklenburg County real estate, but questions remain about the real market value of the property.

Black settlement may not add up

Imprisoned former House Speaker Jim Black used undeveloped land with a tax value of less than $150,000 to pay off an outstanding $500,000 state fine.

Fat CATS

Colleen Calvani writes that the Charlotte Area Transit system will scale back some routes in an attempt to counter three major decreases in funding.

McCrory’s failure

Jeff Taylor argues that Pat McCrory failed to carry Mecklenburg County because he failed to move its conservatives.

Lynx And Exploding Pipes

Jeff Taylor says there may be another factor to blame for CMUD’s recent series of water leaks.

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Research

By The Numbers: What Government Costs in North Carolina Cities and Counties FY 2012

The economic recession that hit full force in 2008 was declared officially over in June 2009 when the country experienced two quarters of very slow growth. But a troubled housing sector and a still-sluggish economy with high unemployment have contributed to the fiscal crises facing many cities and counties in North Carolina. As always, this edition of By the Numbers is must reading for government officials and taxpayers alike. It highlights what kinds of fiscal problems face local governments in an economy that grows only very slowly. With the facts given here, county commissioners and city council members can easily compare their area’s tax burden to similarly situated cities or counties. For taxpayers, BTN is a starting point for questions about taxes and spending, enabling them to hold their elected and appointed officials accountable.

Agenda 2014: A Candidate's Guide to Key Issues in North Carolina Public Policy

Every two years since 1996, coinciding with North Carolina's races for the General Assembly, the John Locke Foundation has published a revised edition of Agenda, our public policy guide for candidates and voters. Typically as we enter the campaign season, candidates for public office in North Carolina are faced with a daunting task: to develop informed positions on dozens of public policy issues. In the pages of Agenda 2014 we provide a concise and easily digestible guide covering a wide range of specific issues, from taxes and spending to energy policy and education.

City and County Issue Guide 2014

Policymakers in the many local governments of North Carolina face a host of important challenges. This issue guide offers solutions to problems that confront North Carolinians at municipal and county levels. The common thread in these recommendations is freedom. By increasing individual freedom, local governments can foster the prosperity of all North Carolinians and keep open avenues to innovative solutions from enterprising citizens.

Carolina Cronyism: Introduction, Overview, and Reforms

Cronyism is an umbrella term covering a host of government activities by which an industry or even a single firm or speculator is given favors and support that they could not attain in market competition. This report explains what opens government to cronyism, gives a brief rundown of recent examples of cronyism in North Carolina, and offers several possible reforms.

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