Blake Hodge

Candidate Filing Opens for 2017 Municipal Elections

With seats on local governing boards up for election this fall, the candidate filing period began at noon on Friday. Voters will cast ballots for three spaces on the Chapel Hill – Carrboro City Schools Board of Education, four members of the Carrboro Board of Aldermen and Chapel Hill Town Council and two seats on the Hillsborough Board of Commissioners. Mayors from the three municipalities will also be voted on in November. Residents who live in the incorporated portion of Mebane in Orange County may run for one of the three seats available on the City Council by filing...

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Amid Varying Allegations, Zach Ward Stepping Away from DSI Comedy Theater

Amid a flurry of allegations, longtime owner Zach Ward is abruptly stepping away from DSI Comedy Theater. Ward announced his decision to take “an indefinite leave of absence” beginning Monday, July 10, in an email to DSI staff after a series of social media posts leveled varying accusations. One post from a woman who said the theater had become her “home” and that she had developed “a love of the people in that theater,” accuses Ward of an act that “probably” falls into a “sexual assault gray area” in 2014. While saying, “No. At least, I don’t think so,”...

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Chapel Hill Police Investigating Hit and Run

Chapel Hill Police are asking for information related to a hit-and-run that occurred early Wednesday morning. Officers were called to an area near the intersection of Martin Luther King Junior Boulevard and Weaver Dairy Road at 4:51 Wednesday morning to a report of a “person lying in the road,” according to police. The victim told police a dark sedan struck her while she was attempting to cross Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. The victim was transported to UNC Hospitals for treatment of non-life-threatening injuries, according to a release. Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call Chapel...

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Chapel Hill Reverses Course, Calls Special Meeting to Consider Brunch Bill

Chapel Hill appears to have had a change of heart about waiting to opt in to the recently passed Brunch Bill. After initially saying the item would be brought before the Town Council in September, town leaders have announced that a special meeting has been called for Monday, July 10. The law allows alcohol sales at restaurants to begin at 10 o’clock Sunday morning, rather than the noon start that has been typical across North Carolina. But the law requires local action to enact the provision in each jurisdiction. A special meeting was required because Chapel Hill town meetings...

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Hillsborough’s Tom Stevens Running Seventh Term as Mayor

All of the mayors of Orange County towns have officially announced they will be running for re-election this fall. Hillsborough Mayor Tom Stevens became the third mayor to announce those intentions on WCHL’s The Aaron Keck Show during his weekly appearance on Monday joining Carrboro’s Lydia Lavelle and Chapel Hill’s Pam Hemminger. Stevens said his intention was to file once the filing opens on Friday at noon. Stevens will be running for his seventh two-year term as mayor. He said on Monday afternoon that navigating development and future growth has been and would continue to be his priority, if...

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Former UNC Chancellor Paul Hardin Dies at 86

UNC Chancellor Emeritus Paul Hardin III passed away at his Chapel Hill home on Saturday, the university announced. Hardin had been diagnosed with ALS. “Chancellor Paul Hardin was a visionary leader who is remembered in North Carolina and across our nation for his dedication to promoting the life-changing impact and benefits of higher education,” Chancellor Carol L. Folt said in a release. “In his bicentennial address, alumnus Charles Kuralt spoke of how Carolina was meant to be ‘the University of the people.’ Paul seized upon Carolina’s 200th birthday as an opportunity to light the way to a better future and open...

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Carrboro Calls Special Meeting Monday to Consider Brunch Bill

Carrboro is hoping to be “First in Brunch” after Governor Roy Cooper singed the “Brunch Bill” on Friday. The law, Senate Bill 155, enables local government bodies to pass an ordinance to allow local establishments to sell alcohol beginning at 10 o’clock on Sunday mornings. That is a change from the noon start time that has been the case across the Tar Heel state. The Carrboro Board of Alderman have called a special meeting for Monday, July 3, “so that residents and visitors can begin enjoying their Sunday brunch with a mimosa or Bloody Mary as early as 10:00...

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Sexual Assault Charges Against UNC Football Player Dismissed

Sexual assault charges have been dropped against a suspended UNC football player. Allen Artis was a reserve linebacker for the UNC football team at this time last year. But in September he was charged with sexual battery and assault after another UNC student took out self-sworn misdemeanor warrants against Artis. That led to Artis being suspended, per team policy. “Today, Mr. Artis is happy to tell you that those charges were dismissed against him,” said Artis’ defense attorney Kerry Sutton at a press conference in front of the Old Well on UNC’s campus Thursday afternoon. Orange County District Attorney...

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Orange County Sheriff’s Office Seizes 13 Firearms, 90 Grams of Cocaine in Search

A search of an Orange County residence has led to an arrest and the seizure of more than a dozen firearms, including semi-automatic assault rifles, and over 90 grams of cocaine. A release from the Orange County Sheriff’s Office says a search warrant was executed in the 2500 block of Highway 86 in Hillsborough on Thursday after citizen complaints of drug sales being conducted at the residence. The Sheriff’s Office arrested 42-year-old Daryl Frederick Crawford II without incident after the search. Investigators seized “semi-automatic assault rifles, semi-automatic handguns, hundreds of rounds of ammunition, 3 ballistic (bullet proof) vests and...

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AC Hotel Construction Closing Portion of Downtown Street

Utility work is periodically closing a portion of a downtown Chapel Hill street through the end of next week. A contractor for the AC Hotel project at the corner of Church and West Rosemary streets will be performing the work, according to the town, which will close Church Street from West Rosemary to Short Street. The work will be contained to between nine o’clock in the morning until four o’clock in the afternoon on Thursday, June 29, Friday, June 30, and Wednesday through Friday, July 5-7. A detour sign will be in place, according to a release, with access...

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