Kelly Fahey

OCLW Raises Living Wage

The Orange County Living Wage Project has increased what they consider their living wage. As of January 1, OCLW’s living wage is $13.70 per hour, or $12.20 for employers that offer health insurance. Chair of OCLW’s steering committee Susan Romaine says the adjustment accounts for an increase in rent in the area. “We use something called the Universal Living Wage Formula, and that is based on a US Department of Housing and Urban Development Standard that says no more than 30 percent of a person’s gross income should be spent on housing,” said Romaine. Romaine calls paying a living...

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Racial Equity Institute Sheds Light on Systemic Racism

Orange Organizing Against Racism and the Racial Equity Institute are holding a “Groundwater” presentation this Sunday at 2:30pm at the Kehillah Synagogue in Chapel Hill. Groundwater presentations are participatory in nature and focus on the systemic and structural aspects of racism. Wanda Hunter of Orange Organizing Against Racism compares racism affecting systems such as the government and economics to groundwater spreading to lakes and rivers. “Racism is in the groundwater of our nation,” says Hunter. “It is feeding all of the institutional lakes, and it’s a cross-system problem, so when you ask who should come, we think everyone should...

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Orange County Man Nominated for ‘America’s Favorite Crossing Guard’

A crossing guard at Orange County’s Central Elementary School has been nominated by Safe Kids Orange County as “America’s Favorite Crossing Guard.” Anderson Whitted, who has worked at Central Elementary for seven years, is one of 50 crossing guards in the nation nominated for the award. Coordinator for Safe Kids Orange County Lindsay Bailey says that Whitted is integral to the safety of students at Central Elementary. “Having someone like Mr. Whitted at Central Elementary School is really important to how children are able to come in and out of the school when their parent’s drop them off,” said...

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Local Group Looking to Revamp Chelsea Theater as a Non-Profit

After the Chapel Hill Alliance for a Livable Town sent out a survey last week to gauge the level of community support in a revitalization of the Chelsea Theater, possibly as a non-profit art-house theater, CHALT founding member Tom Henkel says the local group is looking for possible investors to bring their “Save the Chelsea” campaign to fruition. “Right now, one of the questions on our survey is if someone is willing to kick in more than a membership,” said Henkel. “We need people with deep pockets that are willing to make significant contributions up front in order to...

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Grimball Jewelers Says Goodbye to Village Plaza Location

Grimball Jewelers closed last week after 33 years of operation, most of which was in Chapel Hill’s newly renamed Blue Hill District. Owner Berkley Grimball called the public’s response in his final days of business at his current location “overwhelming”. “I’ve probably gotten hundreds of hugs from people and people coming in and saying how much they’re going to miss us and saying how angry they are that it’s ending,” said Grimball. “There’s been a whole range of things.” The primary reason for the store’s closing was that its landlord, Regency Centers, was not going to renew its lease...

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Princeton Conservative Center Director Presents to UNC Board of Governors

McCormick Professor of Jurisprudence at Princeton Robert George gave a presentation to the UNC Board of Governors last Friday on the James Madison Program on American Ideals and Institutions, of which George is the director. The program encourages students to “think for themselves” and encourages peaceful discourse in the fields of constitutional studies and political thought. The program is sometimes accused of being a “conservative safe space,” yet George ensures it isn’t even a conservative organization. “There is a spectrum of views represented now in the discussion at Princeton which is much broader than what was available on our...

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Advocates Worry New UNC System Policy Could ‘Chill’ Free Speech

The UNC Board of Governors passed a controversial new free speech policy earlier this month that could lead to punishment for those who protest at public universities. The board unanimously passed the policy after being required by the state legislature to address the issue, despite already having free speech policies in place at constituent institutions. Proponents of the policy, such as right-leaning advocacy groups Generation Opportunity-North Carolina and Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) have applauded the move, saying it protects free speech by stopping protestors from interrupting speeches and demonstrations. Others, such as the American Civil Liberties...

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No Alteration for Orange County Commissioner Elections on the Horizon

Editor’s Note: The headline of this article has been changed from “Orange County Commissioners Looking Into Changing How District Vote” to the current headline. The reason for the change was to correct any implication that the matter was set to come before the board in the near future. While it has been discussed during a work session in March, the matter is not set to be discussed on any upcoming agenda. The original unaltered story is below. With local elections coming up in November, there have been talks of changing how Orange County Commissioners are elected for the different...

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Dorosin ‘Disappointed’ Burroughs Not Running for Re-Election to Orange County Commissioners

In the wake of the news that Orange County Commissioner Mia Burroughs will not be running for re-election in 2018, commission chair Mark Dorosin has expressed his disappointment that he will no longer be working with her. “I’m disappointed a little bit,” Dorosin said in an interview on Friday. “I think she’s been a great county commissioner.” Burroughs cited being stretched too thin between her position on the board and her senior advisor role for Ipas – a global non-profit that seeks to protect women’s reproductive health and rights. While she will certainly be missed, Dorosin says he understands...

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Several Infrastructure Projects Underway in Hillsborough

Several construction projects are underway in Hillsborough. Contractors began work last Tuesday on a project to divert additional Cates Creek Park stormwater runoff. One of the problems this project seeks to solve is pollutants from the parking lot reaching water sources. “The runoff from the parking lot flows into a small creek in the park,” Hillsborough Stormwater and Environmental Services manager Terry Hackett said. “It’s eroding a fill slope, and that sediment, along with other pollutants like oil and gas that may leak from parked cars, is reaching the creek. Since it is the mission of the town’s stormwater...

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