GA bills on University airport(s) - whose authority? whose power to take land?

At present two bills related to University airport(s) are proposed in the N.C. General Assembly. One is Apodaca's S1962, which has been discussed at some length on OP, designed to prevent the University from building hangars for AHEC planes at RDU and keep HWA open until another airport is built.

The other, about which I'd heard somewhat less, is H2725, sponsored by Yongue, Insko, Glazier (Primary); Bordsen and Faison -- short title: "UNC Operating/Capital Funds/Airport Auth" -- giving UNC board of governors the power to create and maintain state-level airport authorities.

It's a lengthy, typically intricate bill covering a wide range of requirements, needs, and eventualities (including the right to sue and be sued), as well as the construction of authority commissions (the likely membership of which we can certainly speculate about, given the recent history of lobbyist/advocate presence on committees and commissions related to HWA).

The Orange Bus

I see that the BOCC has decided to rename OPT as The Orange Bus, with resultant web-site and advertising changes as well as painting all their vehicles OP-orange. As a side-note, perhaps OP should think about taking out some advertising on the buses. Commissioner Barry Jacobs was against the idea, according to OrangeChat, calling it "too precious" and saying that he thought OPT was just fine. C'mon Commissioner Jacobs, this is a web 2.0 world! I am totally in favor of OPT becoming The Orange Bus. First off, how many of you knew what OPT was the first time you heard the acronym? How many of you know what OPT actually does? But, The Orange Bus, that's easy to understand and by playing on the county name it becomes catchy.

This does raise a question in my mind though and that is, what changes will be made on the website to make it a better tool for potential customers. As it stands right now, I think most people have no idea what OPT does unless they are already using it. How will the website make this information more accessible? I had the opportunity just this morning to tell a coworker moving to Hillsborough about the Hill-to-Hill route - she had no idea that it existed and was very excited about the possibility of not driving every day. How will The Orange Bus get this information out to the public?

UNC Fiscal Impact Analysis for Carolina North, June 26, 7 p.m.

For OP readers: I just sent the following email inviting the community to the presentation of the preliminary results of the fiscal impact analysis. Hope you can attend:

Increase Citizen Input

In Chapel Hill we have a representative form of government that works better than any place I've lived. When I first got here I joined a citizen committee on Technology. I was amazed at how directly involved I could be. But the experience of being on that board also opened my eyes to the many flaws in this process. Yet I still yearn for more citizen input in our Town.

The recent citizen outcry against a Council vote on health care is a excellent example of what happens if you don't have enough community input BEFORE a council vote. This bit from The Chapel Hill News describes the problem well,

Hey you, vote Tuesday

Yeah YOU. Did you know that there's an election on Tuesday? That's OK - I forgot too.

A handful of registered Democrats and independents who remember to go to the polls across North Carolina will be selecting the nominee for Commissioner of Labor. But more interestingly (to me, anyway) voters in the newly-created northern district of Orange County will be selecting their first County Commissioner to represent District 2.

Steve Yuhasz and Leo Allison finished the primary with 37% and 27% respectively. Yuhasz' failure to get over 40% qualified Allison to ask for a run-off.

Unfortunately I'm out of town, or I would drive around Hillsborough and parts north this weekend and see what going on. Are people talking about the election? How many people will vote on Tuesday?

The results will come in at: http://results.enr.clarityelections.com/NC/Orange/4609/6585/en/summary.html

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