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Outside, the Sun is Shining

It’s Memorial Day. Many news outlets have given their employees the day off to spend some time thinking about what it means to send people out to die in combat so we can live free of government whim, oppression, privilege, excessive taxation, snooping, and search and seizure without probable cause; with freedom of expression, the right to worship as we please, the right to scarf Twinkies and popcorn, the right to build a shed in a floodplain, and the right to work as hard as we can to trade goods for the things we desire instead of purchasing subsidized cronies. It has been said we send young men off to die for that which our illustrious leaders so cavalierly vote away. Well, the more we keep it up, the more grueling the battle to regain lost freedoms is likely to be. ‘Tleast that’s my philosophy. Enjoy a fat-free hotdog on a gluten-free bun with organic, salmonella-free catsup today, while you can still afford it.

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Dedicated Citizens

The Polk County Commissioners held a worksession at 6:00 a.m. to review a water resources contract, and look who showed up.

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This, Too, Is Cracked

Cracks in the walls of the auditorium at Southwestern Community College mysteriously appeared as a NC DOT contractor operated a pile driver for road construction 75 feet away. The cause remains unknown. (Cliquez ici pour voir les images.)

There is no structural damage and the building is safe, according to a DOT engineer.

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A Diverse Leader with Vision, with Demonstrated Experience Tracking Dynamic Metrics across 26 Modalities

The University of North Carolina’s Board of Governors will host one of its regional sessions to collect public input on characteristics to be sought in a new president for the system at the UNC-Asheville Sherrill Center on May 26. Anybody delusional enough to think they know more than the HR experts about nailing down esoterics with abstractions is indeed invited to show up and add to any confusion.

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Fueled First by Government

In a very small article, Bill Moss at the Hendersonville Lightning illustrates private-public partnering in so many ways. Last year, Senator Tom Apodaca (R-Hendersonville) collaborated on making North Carolina’s coal ash mitigation standards the strictest in the country, demanding the closure of all ponds. This year, Apodaca sponsored legislation that would give Duke more time to close its coal ash ponds and get an expedited regulatory review for its proposed natural gas/solar plant. The way I read the article, the whole idea to convert the plant’s source of power originated with Apodaca.

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Priorities, Priorities

The City of Brevard is considering raising property taxes 2 cents. One cent would pay for parks and greenways. The other cent would be general-purpose. Budget highlights include $10,000 for a playground, $30,000 for Heart of Brevard (which is something like Julie on The Love Boat), $10,000 for the arts council, $10,000 for the Chamber of Commerce, and $2000 for fireworks. The position of city engineer, which is currently filled for $110,000 a year, will probably be eliminated.

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That Depends on Your Theory

According to Admin at the Smoky Mountain News:

Theoretically, a new homeless shelter that opened across town in Hazelwood last fall should have made things better for Frog Level’s homeless plight.

Instead, it apparently made matters worse.

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On the Road Again

Strive Not to Drive Week ended for me sleeping on the office floor again, telling myself how grateful I should be my foot was not turned around 180 degrees like that soccer player’s, that I was not walking on the lumpy, lumpy lava turf near Albuquerque, that I wasn’t walking close to 100 miles to work like that Navajo girl I picked up one time. Every day, she hitchhiked to work at Denny’s all that way away because she was determined to rise above the indolence so prevalent on the res. This morning, I walked to the mechanic’s and picked up my car that is now purring like a kitten. Me happy.

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Suited Me Fine

The Jackson County Commissioners unanimously approved contracting for an independent audit of their permitting and code enforcement operations. No money is missing, directly anyway. Instead, county leaders are concerned some buildings may not be compliant and recordkeeping could be lax. The curiosity followed an allegation by exiting county planner Gerald Green that he had been deprived of the ability to enforce county erosion-control codes. He pointed the finger at Permitting Director Tony Elders, who passed the buck as well. Statements following from County Manager Chuck Wooten have left all concerned concluding nobody had been enforcing the ordinances since 2012, and I don’t rightly recall hearing of any problems of consequence.

But nobody asked me. County Commissioners must now right the wrong with official corrective action that includes the development of an organizational chart with, among other things, the stricture that the new permitting and planning head be directly under the county manager; and managerial monitoring of the permitting process that includes tracking reports for the commissioners. See 1, 2, 3.

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Revisiting with Each New Regime

Jackson County has a new board of commissioners, and that means it’s time to resurrect a landslide ordinance.

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