All posts in category Spending

Office-retail only

Ellie Kinnaird’s voice was drowned out during her final years in the N.C. Senate by affluent colleagues who, having reached a high level of creature comfort, put in place policies that closed off that path to others. After several years of advocating for laws that made life better for residents in all socio-economic classes, Kinnaird […]

Know the numbers

Orange County’s annual budget for 2014 is around $220 million. Chapel Hill’s is about $95 million. Owasa’s is another $43.5 million. Add those up – $358.5 million, even without Carrboro and Hillsborough – and divide by 365 (the number of days in a year), and you come up with the startling fact that our local […]

Money, money, money

I read over the agenda for tonight’s Town Council meeting and felt the way I often feel when I pick up the mail this time of year – everyone wants my money. Over the past few months, council has heard about some wonderful plans to make our town a better place. And now it comes […]

Back of the line — again

What are you thankful for this Thanksgiving? For being able turn on your faucet and drink a glass of clean water that doesn’t taste funky and leave you worried about what sorts of toxins or carcinogens it contains? For never having to budget for pumping out the septic tank and remediation efforts when it fails? […]

Sorting out recycling

Does Wake County get a volume discount for recycling? It seems to be able to handle recycling at half the cost as Orange County. Then again, Wake County is a little more than twice the area of Orange County (857 square miles compared to Orange’s 401 square miles), yet it has nearly seven times the […]

Buybacks

Tell me I’m not the only person to have donated something to the PTA Thrift Shop, then a month later bought it back. Town Council members know the feeling. They are asked to give away affordable housing as they vote to approve redevelopment projects, then scrounge for town resources to buy affordable housing somewhere else […]

A roster with ballast

“Fling … ends” read the headline in a local newspaper over a story about candidates running for office. And as I read through the profiles of the final candidates to file for Town Council – Loren Hintz, Jonathan Riehl, Amy Ryan and D.C. Swinton – and the school board – Andrew Davidson and Ignacio Tzoumas […]

Business as usual?

Bonnie Hauser, the president of Orange County Voice, sheds light on Orange County Commissioners’ budget deliberations. Here’s what she has to say about the commissioners’ season finale: On Tuesday, the BoCC will approve increased taxes and fees for 2013-14. On top of Chapel Hill’s 2 cent tax increase, the county will add 2 cents for […]

Budget busters

The town can’t afford to keep the larger library open as many hours a week as the pre-renovated space without raising taxes or cutting other services. From the beginning the plan for funding the increased operating costs was to raise taxes, but the economy hasn’t exactly bounced back. Now state laws are hitting some of […]

Price vs. value

When I heard about the 120 or so taxpayers who showed up at the County Commissioners meeting on May 23 pleading to pay more in taxes to fully fund the schools budget, I recalled a scene from Crocodile Dundee wherein New York City street thugs brandish a switchblade in an attempt to rob the protagonist […]