Saturday, September 29, 2012

Red Line Chronicle - Chapter 8 - Red Line Task Force Back in Action

After taking a couple of months off from meeting, the Red Line Task Force chaired by Davidson Mayor Woods met on Wednesday to get an update on the project. 

The task force efforts to push the finance plan have been on hold since Norfolk Southern (NSRC) sent a series of letters this past spring that raised a number of serious questions.  In response, the involved parties are planning a capacity study of the NSRC O-line - the railroad's name for the line where the commuter rail project would take place.

Representatives of NCDOT and CATS met with NSRC earlier this month to begin that planning, but it will take a couple more months before that is ready.  Deputy Secretary for Transportation, Paul Morris, stated that executing the study is fairly "straight forward and predictable", but the important part is getting agreement on the assumptions and scope of the study itself.  That's the work that will take place over the next couple of months.  It was mentioned that the study could possibly evaluate traffic and capacity requirements from "New York to New Orleans", or it could be much smaller.  That is all driven by the assumptions and scope.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Davidson Spending Plans from the Twitterverse

From Tuesday night's Davidson Town Board work session...

@TownOfDavidson Sept work session underway at #Davidson Town Hall. - 6:13 PM

@TownOfDavidson Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) discussion underway. #Davidson - 6:30 PM

@TownOfDavidson has $461k Brd could spend on projects for #Davidson. - 6:34 PM

@TownOfDavidson $461k potential spend would mean no tax break for #Davidson residents. - 6:37 PM

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Breaking Down the Roberts Campaign Poll on NC-9

The Jennifer Roberts Campaign released a poll last week that shows this race to be much closer than conventional wisdom predicts.  The published results show the race at Pittenger(R) 38%, Roberts(D) 37%, Campbell(L) 3%, and a whopping 22% still undecided.

Very little polling data is available in the typical Congressional House race, so when anything is made public it warrants taking a look.  At the same time, any data released by a campaign should be taken with a wheelbarrow full of salt.

There are three basic possibilities with a poll like this:

  1. It's a legitimate poll based on reasonable assumptions.
     2.  It's a manipulated poll to get the desired result.

     3.  The campaign just made up the numbers.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

An example of a true activist...

The below piece from my friend Linda Angele was originally intended for the River Talk newsletter in River Run, but because of its political nature it was deemed as possibly "offensive".  How being an active member of your community could be offensive seems a bit hyper-sensitive to me, but these are the times in which we live.

Linda is one of the most sincere and dedicated activists I have ever met.  If you are interested in getting involved in local Republican politics, she can certainly point you in the right direction.

From Linda in italics below...

Monday, September 10, 2012

Capital Improvement Plan Preview...this one could sting a little.

Tuesday evening, Davidson Commissioners will dig into the proposed Capital Improvement Plan now that Mi-Connection will require less annual subsidy.

Here are some highlights from the docs posted on the agenda (errors corrected):

  • Over $10 million of projects including $2.5 million for the Potts Rd connector ($500k in Town money $2m in Federal dollars) and $2.9 million for a new fire station.

  • About $1.5 million more is on the Town wishlist for smaller items.

  • Most of the proposed spending is front-loaded to be spent by 2015.  That's well before the Town will know if there is any real and lasting improvment with Mi-Connection.

  • Staffing proposals could add hundreds of thousands in recurring expenses to the Town budget.

Taxpayers watch out.  This one could leave a mark.

Correction: The Town is looking at $10 million in new projects, not $8 million.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Is Pittenger in Trouble in NC-9?

Today, I did a little precinct walking in a heavily Republican precint, and one thing seemed rather clear to me.   Robert Pittenger's hyper-negative primary campaign against Jim Pendergraph may very well come back to haunt him. If the totally unscientific results from the many conversationss I had this afternoon hold anywhere close to the actual results, Pittenger's primary victory could turn out to be of the pyrrhic variety.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

All Dressed Up and Nowhere to Go...DNC Downsizes...Again

The DNC and its "boon" to Charlotte's economy took another hit today with the move of President Obama's nomination acceptance speech from the Panthers' 74,000 seat stadium to the Bobcats' 20,000 seat arena.

Officially, the reason was the weather.  Unofficially, one has seriously consider that they just couldn't put enough warm bodies in the seats. There is ample evidence that the latter was likely the real truth.

First, the DNC cut the convention from four days to three back in January.  Then came the elimination of what was supposed to be a big event at the Speedway. Now, downsizing the President's Thursday night speech effectively cuts a reason for many thousands of people to make the trek to Charlotte for Thursday's event - cutting two nights off of many hotel stays.  I heard this evening from one University Area hotel worker that hotel rooms all across town are being canceled due to this change - over 20 at this person's establishment alone.

But maybe more tellingly for why the event was moved...the delegates staying at that same hotel were trying to give hotel workers tickets to the event Thursday night as late as this morning - before it was downsized to something more fitting.