Darn, it's hard to get back in the blogging saddle. I feel like I've completely lost touch with what's going on. To ease back in, I thought I'd do a little roundup of what's going on in this area.
Some of you might remember when I mentioned the group that doesn't want Mecklenburg residents to have funds to provide adequate public transportation. They call themselves SCAT. Jay Morrison is the man who started the petition drive to repeal the half-cent transit sales tax by putting it on the ballot this fall. Repealing that tax would take money from all mass transit, not just the light rail system.
Now Morrison, who has since filed to run for the school board, has a new tax dollar and time wasting project for the city. From my post at NCPolitico:
Jay Morrison, a candidate for CharMeck School Board has decided to waste massive man hours and tax dollars on a trivial search through the emails of 6000 city employees for information on the half-cent transit sales tax. [Via WSOC]
Regardless of what he thinks this might accomplish, if it is an example of the type of time-wasting, money-wasting activities that Morrison will endorse, then we don't need him anywhere near our government. There are precious few tax dollars to go around as it is.
Gee, a Republican wasting taxpayer dollars. Who'da thunkit?
The great news for Charlotte is that this isn't a D vs R issue. A Republican retiring from City Council has volunteered to head up the committee that will fight to retain the half-cent sales tax and our Republican Mayor also supports the light rail system. With bi-partisan support, we hope Charlotte will be able to maintain funding for its mass transit system through the sales tax until other funding opportunities are available.
In other Charlotte news, our popular mayor, Pat McCrory will face a challenge from within his own party by School Board member Ken Gjertsen. Gjertsen is challenging McCrory because he says,
"The light-rail line is misprioritized when you compare it to crime and schools." [>CharO]
As you should gather from that quote, Gjertsen opposes the half-cent sales tax for transit and will be appealing to winger conservatives. Low turnout could cause McCrory some trouble, so I see a pretty hard-fought primary ahead for Republicans and that's good news for Democrats who have something to be excited about in the mayoral race.
Rep. Beverly Earle has stepped up to challenge McCrory for his seat. Dems have had little to cheer about in this race the past few election cycles. Dem. candidate Craig Maddans has stepped up several times, but couldn't overcome McCrory's deep pockets and relative popularity. This cycle things will be different and Mecklenburg County Democratic Party Chair, David Erdman, said it best:
"It's been a challenge for Democrats to come up with a candidate who could attract the vote and funding, and who had the previous office experience to make the candidacy credible," said county Democratic chairman David Erdman. "All of those challenges are answered in the person of Beverly Earle."
The above quote is from a nice long article about the mayoral race found in the CharO. I'm sure you'll be hearing more about her over the next several weeks.
Finally, the only Democrat on the city council to find herself challenged by a nasty old Republican is my dear mother. She will face some punk 25-yr-old. :) Mom (Patsy Kinsey) takes every challenger seriously and is looking forward to this one.
From Cabarrus County......
Coy Privette is resigning from just about everything except his seat on the county commission and nobody seems to know what he plans to do. According to the Observer:
Commissioners said Friday they had not heard whether Privette will attend their meeting Monday for what could be a heated debate about plans to build a new jail in downtown Concord.
Maybe they'll name a wing after Privette. Maybe it will be the one he spends time in. :)