Here is our extended interview with incumbent Pam Hemminger, who is running for reelection in District 1.
Here's a look at today's local headlines:
HOTEL, APARTMENTS PROPOSED: A developer will bring a plan to the Town Council later this month for a hotel and student apartments at the corner of Estes Drive and MLK Boulevard across from Amity Church. The change would require a rezoning and appears aimed at serving the future Carolina North campus planned for across the boulevard.
UNPAID SCHOOL LUNCH TAB: The Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools Board of Education wants to forgive about $45K in unpaid lunch tabs. In some cases, parents owe more than $600. Tom Hartwell reports the board voted 4-2 against sending the unpaid bills to a collection agency.
BRUSHSTROKES: BEIJING: In this month's visual arts column Debbie Meyer interviews Barbara Tyroler about her exhibit opening this month at the FedEx center on the UNC campus. Debbie has also started a monthly arts feature in our sister publication, The Durham News.
Former Mayor Ken Broun responds to Chas Gaertner's downtown criticism in today's letters (Broun has bought a unit in 140 West and says the project is a sign of good things to come). Also in today's letters, writer Judy Hogan says poet Jacki Shelton Green needs your help.
And in other news today, look for a report later today on last night's meeting of the Chapel Hill Community Policing Commitee (lots of talk there about what defines a "critical incident" and how to respone to one), and we'll get opening arguments in the first trial associated with the nine accused killers of Josh Bailey four years ago. Tammy Grubb is in the courtroom.
And tonight, Dave Hart will be in Carrboro for a forum for candidates for the Orange County Board of Commissioners District 1 seat: incumbent Pam Hemminger, Chapel Hill Town Council member Penny Rich and former Carrboro Alderman Mark Dorosin are seeking two seats.
Thanks for reading,
Early filings for political races show contests shaping up for the Orange County Board of Commissioners.
Four of the county board’s seven seats are up this fall. There are two seats available in District 1, representing more populous Chapel Hill-Carrboro; one seat in District 2, representing Hillsborough and the county’s rural areas, and one at large-seat available.
The filing period ends at noon Feb. 29. Here is a rundown of those who have filed so far.
In District 1, incumbent Pam Hemminger and Penny Rich, both Democrats, have filed. Hemminger, the board’s current vice chairwoman, is seeking her second term. She previously served on the Chapel Hill-Carrboro school board, where she was appointed and then elected in 2004. Rich is a current member of the Chapel Hill Town Council, midway through her first term after being elected in November of 2009. She is a small business owner of a personal chef-catering service, writes a food blog and teaches classes on healthy menu planning. Current Commissioner Valerie Foushee is not seeking re-election so that she can run for State House District 50.
In District 2, incumbent Steve Yuhasz will face a primary challenge from at least fellow Democrat Renee Price. Yuhasz is seeking his second term and served as the board’s vice chairman last year. Price narrowly lost to current Commissioner Earl McKee in the 2010 Democratic primary. The winner of the May primary will face a Republican in November. So far, one Republican, Chris Weaver has filed.
In the at large race, current board Chairwoman Bernadette Pelissier is seeking her second term. Republican Mary Carter has also filed for the seat.
The commissioners’ primary duties are adopting an annual budget, setting the property tax rate, appointing various officials and representatives to advisory boards, planning for county needs and enacting local ordinances. The board also has the authority to call bond referendums, such as the half-cent sales tax referendum for mass transit the county expects to put on the ballot in November.
There are no municipal races on the ballot this fall.