Friday, March 30, 2012 back in a couple of weeks.

aShortChronicle will be taking a break from regular posting for the next couple weeks. 

Stay tuned though.  With primary season upon us and the budget season about to begin, things will be sure to get "interesting" soon.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Davidson Inches Towards 4-Year Term Referendum

At Tuesday evening's Town Board work session, Davidson officials re-kindled discussion started last year on altering the Town's charter.  

The change under discussion would result in 4-year staggered terms for both the Mayor and Commissioners.  Interestingly, Mayor Woods threw out the option of 4-year staggered terms for the Commissioners while keeping the Mayor at 2-years.  This is the same setup Mooresville uses, and it will be interesting to see if it gets any traction.  He seemed particularly clear in his opinion that Commissioners should be at 4-years regardless of what happens with the Mayor's position though he did express a preference for 4-year terms for the Mayor as well.

Endless Rail Money, Crystal Ball Approvals, and Smiling on Candid Camera

A few odd tidbits on the region's rail projects this Monday showing that all is well in transit planning land...

Sunday, March 25, 2012

4 Year Terms for Davidson Elected Officials...Reprise

Last year about this time, Davidson began discussions on extending and staggering the terms for the Board and Mayor.  This Tuesday, with two new Board members in the mix, that discussion will take the stage once again.

The first discussion item on the Tuesday planning session agenda mentions a "charter amendment".  Town Manager Leamon Brice was able to confirm that this refers to the same 4-year charter amendment topic broached a year ago.  A schedule for both a Board executed change as well as one approved by a ballot referendum will be presented.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Davidson Community Garden - Growing Food for a Good Cause

Some Spring Greens
Something on the beaten path...

As part of DUMC's "Great Day of Service", the Davidson Community Garden on Potts street got underway in earnest on Saturday.  Now in its third year and fully built out, the garden is set to donate an increased amount of food to those in need.  It's one of the  unique gems of living in Davidson that residents should check out this spring and summer.

Friday, March 23, 2012

New Red Line Maps and First Impressions

New Red Line maps were posted Thursday, so residents can now see how they will be impacted - at least partially.  See here at for the story.

The maps detail out whether or not a parcel is subject to the proposed SAD.  However, the important details behind the SAD have not been included in the map - details such as what the new SAD rate will be and the rationale for why some parcels are included vs excluded.  The current understanding is that the new proposal will be something less than the original 75c/$100 value which has caused much concern in the business community.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Et tu Cornelius?!?!... Another Blow to the Red Line

In what must be seen as a stunning rebuke to Red Line supporters, the Cornelius Board unanimously passed a resolution last night that sets a seriously high standard for getting the town's approval.  Actually, that's an overstatement.  What they set is a completely reasonable standard.  It just happens to be one that may be impossible for the Red Line to meet.

Davidson's Citizen Transit Advisory Group Representative (AWOL)

CTAG, the Citizen Transit Advisory Group, is a mandated committee as part of the Metropolitan Transit Commission (MTC) inter-local agreement which governs transit planning and decisions  for the metro area.  The body is the official mechanism for citizen input into transit related issues as part of the MTC inter-local agreement.  Davidson has been without an official representative on this body for a couple of months now since the resignation of the former appointee due to a move out of the area.  The deadline for applications was January 13th with multiple candidates applying, but to date nobody has been selected to fill the position. 

Today was the CTAG monthly meeting, so I thought I'd go check it out to see what representation Town residents weren't getting.   The meeting started bright and early at 730AM in the basement of the CharMeck government center downtown.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Pointing out the "best conservative" appears to make the less conservative nervous

In Monday's post, "NRCC: 'On the Radar' But Off Target on NC-9", I clearly pointed out why I think Ric Killian is the best conservative in the NC-9 race.  It did not take long for the responses to come in.  Apparently, pointing out who is the "best" choice makes people nervous.  I imagine that to be the case when the only replies generated were based on misdirection and incomplete information.

It was an interesting day.

Monday, March 19, 2012

NRCC: "On the Radar" But Off Target on NC-9

The National Republican Congressional Committee has just released their updated list of "On the Radar" candidates in their "Young Guns" program.  Three of the eleven candidates in the Republican primary for NC-9 made the list.

To me, the NRCC appears more interested in playing it safe by supporting candidates who will have across-the-aisle appeal to Democrats  or who can self-fund, rather than picking candidates with the strongest conservative resume.  Both the Rothenberg and Cook political analysis sites show NC-9 as a strong Republican seat with Rothenberg rating it safe Republican and Cook showing the seat with a strong Republican tilt.  With those characteristics, we should be trying to get the best conservative elected and not just any Republican. 

That "best conservative" is Ric Killian - the current State Representative for NC-105 in South Charlotte.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Three Strikes...Norfolk Southern Says Red Line Supporters Are Off Base

With the third "correction" of Red Line promoters in as many months, we seem to be getting into a pattern here.  Red Line supporters state everything is fine and on schedule, sparking a response from Norfolk Southern saying..."No, everything is not fine".  Followed, by supporters saying everything is fine.

With the below letter, the timeline appears to be shot making it increasingly unlikely that all the work could be completed in time for a JPA to be formed, Special Assessments to be levied, and bonds to be issued before the SAD legislation expires in June of 2013.  It will be interesting to see how long the towns wait before they have to start lobbying for an extension of that legislation for the Red Line.

At the very least, this issue will now linger well into the November election season.  With the State being asked to backstop the finance package and the Legislature and Governor's office up for grabs, this is going to get interesting.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

NC-9 Roundup

Seen today at Don Reid's weekly Thursday breakfast - Andy Dulin and Mike Steinberg.  This conservative meetup has been going on for many years and is worth a look if you are in South Charlotte early on a Thursday.  The questions are tough but fair as Councilman Dulin found out this morning, but the group is always welcoming.  During election season, stop by the Skyland Family Restaurant on South Blvd and meet some candidates. 

Heard today that the Robert Pittenger campaign is running some phone polls.  If you happen to have received one, drop me a comment.  I'd be interested in hearing what you thought of it.

And most importantly...

State Representative and Army Reserve Colonel Ric Killian returned safely from his tour of duty in Afghanistan Thursday afternoon.  Rep Killian came in a solid number 2 during the Meck GOP straw poll conducted a couple weeks ago - without being able to campaign in person.  The Killian family has been busy carrying the campaign load while he has been on active duty, and Ric's return to the campaign trail will certainly shake things up as he adds his conservative voice to the discussion.

UPDATE: Ric Killian back from Afghanistan, turns to Congressional campaign

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

New Red Line Data on the Way, Sorta'...

Davidson Town Board members received an update Tuesday evening from the Red Line consultants.

Residents can expect to have access to some new functionality on the Red Line Regional Rail website by next Monday that allows them to see how they will be financially impacted by the project and learn if they are in the defined benefit district.  What they won't be allowed to see is how the project impacts their town financially compared to the other towns involved.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Backing into more small-d democracy...

Last week, Cornelius started the process to change their election schedule to be in sync with Federal mid-term and Presidential election years.  To do so they will have a 1-time three year term starting with next year's 2013 election.  At the 2016 election they will go back to 2 year terms.  Once this happens, Cornelius will be the only town in North Mecklenburg to be on this schedule.  They should enjoy a significant bump in turnout, and thus a more representative board.  Somewhat ironically, they are getting to better small-d democracy through a unilateral Board decision.

You may remember that last year Davidson considered a unilateral change to board term lengths - proposing an extension to 4-year terms from the current 2-year terms.  That proposal met with stiff public resistance and was shelved last summer.  Hopefully, if it comes up again in the future the Town will take Cornelius's lead and only do so after putting it on the ballot for a referendum during an expected high-turnout election.

"For one-time only, commissioners extend term"

Sunday, March 11, 2012

History Lesson and Predictions from John Hood at the Iredell County GOP Reagan Dinner

Saturday night at the Charles Mack Center in Morresville, John Hood of the John Locke Foundation gave the key note address at the Iredell County GOP Reagan Dinner. 

Laced with a good dose of humor, it was a rather sobering look at how history repeats itself in the constant political tug-o-war between the left and right.  Starting with a description of an economy and policies in 1937 that sounded eerily like today's, Hood then outlined the response from a conservative North Carolina senator of the period that could have been coming from the John Locke Foundation itself.  Mr Hood painted a picture of a nation and state in need of some serious recalibration.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Win One for Tradition

Nobody likes a good protest more than yours truly.  In fact this entire blog is effectively a protest against government overreach and silliness.  Davidson witnessed it's very own public protest today, but unlike many protests this one had a sweet ending - and it wasn't just due to the free Ben and Jerry's ice cream.

Stand Up NC Hosts Vince Coakley to Standing Room Only Crowd

Steve Bennett Kicks Off the Evening
The Charles Mack Center in Mooresville was packed tonight with conservative voters and candidates coming out to see special guest Vince Coakley from WBT Radio.

By the end of the evening a standing room only crowd of nearly 150 was in attendance.  After roughly 20 minutes of opening remarks, Coakley began taking questions.   Energy was still high and the questions were flowing over 90 minutes into the evening.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Dueling Press Releases In NC Senate 41 Race Reveal Inconsistency For One Candidate

The two most well known candidates for NC Senate 41 issued dueling press releases Tuesday regarding their transportation priorities - one of the hot topics in the district.

Both mentioned widening I-77 as their top priority, but that's where the similarities ended.

Former NC GOP Chairman John Aneralla clearly stated his opposition to the Red Line Regional Rail project in his statement while Cornelius Mayor Jeff Tarte conspicuously failed to mention the most discussed (and most expensive) project in his notice to the press.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Breaking News: Tonight's Meck BOCC Meeting - Property Revaluation

If you have questions and concerns with the reval process that recently raised your taxes, tonight's BOCC meeting at the CharMeck government center is for you! There will be a detailed presentation regarding concerns developed by folks in the North Mecklenburg area. If you can't attend please consider contacting the BOCC here.

UPDATE: Observer editorial on subject

UPDATE 2: "Mecklenburg County to review Lake Norman property assessments" - This is an excellent example of citizens banding together and not letting government overreach go unchecked.  Congratulations to all involved in making this happen!

Monday, March 5, 2012

Rep Myrick's hand-picked successor? I think I'll make my own choice.

Coming as a surprise to nobody, Republican Sue Myrick endorsed Jim Pendergraph as her hand picked successor Monday - following that up quickly with an email blast seeking fundraising support for the former Democrat running in the heavily Republican and newly re-drawn NC-9 Congressional District.

Occupy the Green?

Well this should be interesting...

Ben and Jerry's posts about an OCCUPY the GREEN protest event this coming Friday...

wonder if it has anything to do with this highly commented story about..

"New school policy ends 5th-graders’ Fridays on the Green" from


Saturday, March 3, 2012

Red Line Chronicle - Chapter 5 - Alternative Choices and Federal Dollars

At this past Tuesday's Davidson Board work session, Davidson Commissioner Jim Fuller raised a question about Federal dollars for the Red Line - asking if President Obama's new budget opened any new possibilities for Federal funding.  Mayor Woods responded that a review by the consultants did not turn up any new money for commuter rail projects. 

One would think that effectively closes the argument that no Federal dollars are available, and our only choice is to do it ourselves with primarily local money, right?  No.  In fact all that shows is that the wrong choice has been made for this corridor from the beginning. 

Thursday, March 1, 2012

And They're Off! - Candidate Filing Ends for 2012 Election Cycle

The filing period for this election cycle offically ended yesterday, and several contests are shaping up to be real horse races.  Three of the more interesting contests will likely end in run-offs before we even know the final nominees for the general election, and two of those directly impact Davidson and our new districts.