All posts in category Council Members

Money, money, money

How to spend money wreaks havoc on many a marriage. As Town Council, with its four new members, begins the budgeting process this year, I wonder how our new council relationships will fare. The town’s financial director, Ken Pennoyer, will give a presentation at Monday night’s meeting that involves shifting some unexpected leftover money to […]

Council retreat

I suppose I’d be opening up fresh wounds if I proposed that before people weigh in on the icy sidewalk problem they first go see The Martian. The movie captures one of my core philosophies of life: the notion of chipping away. In the face of futility, continue to live your life. Stay true to […]

What we do best

Decades ago, a running coach told me, “The only way to run faster is to run faster.” Pre-empting Nike’s “Just Do It” slogan by nearly a generation, the coach’s advice has proved useful in all sorts of situations in my life. Now it appears I can apply it to Town Council work. The town has […]

New beginnings

New year, new mayor, new council. New ideas, new dynamics, new proposals. With all of these new beginnings, Town Council will evaluate new development applications. Chapel Hill has only a handful of large parcels of land that would be suitable for the high-revenue commercial space we need to shift the property tax burden homeowners bear. […]

Excluding Inclusionary Zoning?

Since when did affordable housing mean homes for people who earn 100% of the Area Median Income? Chapel Hill passed the Inclusioinary Zoning Ordinance in 2010 that 15% of all new for-sale housing units built must be affordable to people earning no more than 80% or 65% of the AMI (the affordable units split evenly […]

Festive Council

I took a different tack this year in creating a Christmas lights tour. Rather than driving through town randomly searching for yards that glow, I visited the neighborhoods of Town Council members to gauge holiday spirit. First, where not to go: Morgan Creek. Though Sally Greene’s house had a dash of red, the streets are […]

We have to talk

Jim Ward set the bar high during the Dec. 2 organizational meeting when it came to thanking his family for their support during the 16 years he served on Town Council. It was pointed out to me, archly, that I did not single out any family members in my generic thanks. So, here’s what I […]

Crossing over

Come Wednesday, I will cross over, moving from the spectator side of the council dais to Participant Row. And that means Chapel Hill Watch must undergo a metamorphosis of its own. No longer will I be able to critique content after the fact. If I disagree with a colleague or hear a council member behaving […]

Winding down or unraveling?

I’ve heard tales of people, upon receiving an eviction notice, vandalizing the very place they call home. At the Nov. 16 meeting, we saw a bit of that behavior by some council members wrapping up their terms and others anxious about the change that newly elected officials might bring. The meeting opened with a developer […]

Council member’s U-turn

As we grow in population, we have to grow in infrastructure. Some of the current Town Council members don’t seem to understand that parallelism. That’s one reason voters elected four new representatives to council a couple weeks ago. But at last Monday night’s council meeting, one council member may have seen the light. At that […]