Wednesday, July 6th, 2022

Author: John Hammer

About John Hammer

Here are my most recent posts

Despite What City Council Says There Is No 7-7-7 Rule

On Tuesday, June 21, the Greensboro City Council voted unanimously to start charging residents $25 for not complying with the ordinance requiring them to remove their garbage and recycling containers from the street, apparently having little idea what that ordinance actually states.

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The 73rd Annual Kirkwood Fourth Of July Parade Is Monday

The 73rd annual Kirkwood Parade will be held on Monday, July 4, promptly at about 5 p.m. The Kirkwood Fourth of July Parade, aka the grandmother of all neighborhood parades in Greensboro, began in 1949 when a bunch of World War II veterans and their families decided to celebrate Independence Day by marching around the neighborhood banging on pots and pans, and it has been a delightfully disorganized event ever since.

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Raises For Greensboro Police Don’t Keep Pace With Other Cities

The Greensboro City Council has been patting itself on the back for giving police officers a 7 percent raise in the 2022-2023 budget. The Police Department is currently short about 100 officers from its authorized force of 689 sworn officers.  The last several Greensboro Police Academy classes have not graduated enough officers to keep pace with the average attrition rate of about 60 officers a year, which means the number of vacancies will continue increase. In a static environment, the 7 percent raise for Greensboro police officers would help with the recruitment issues.  However, the environment is far from static.  Cities across the state and nation are experiencing similar problems with police staffing and taking action.

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Early Voting In City Council Election Starts Next Week

Early voting for the July 26 City Council election starts at 8 a.m. on Thursday, July 7 and ends at 3 p.m. on Saturday, July 23.  There will be no early voting on Saturday, July 9 and Sunday, July 10.  The early voting site in the Blue Room at the Old Guilford County Court House at 301 W. Market St. will be open week days from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and closed on Saturday, July 16 and Sunday, July 17. 

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Five Bonds On Tuesday, July 26 Ballot Total $135 Million

Last week the Greensboro City Council passed the largest tax increase in the history of Greensboro, but the City Council wants more money to spend. Although they have received little attention, the City Council has placed five bonds totaling $135 million on the ballot for the Tuesday, July 26 election.

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NC Legislature Plans No Immediate Action Following Supreme Court Decision

The Dobbs v. Jackson decision by the US Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade is one of the most momentous Supreme Court decisions in 50 years. Dobbs v. Jackson doesn’t outlaw abortion, as many abortion rights supporters have said, but returns the authority to make decisions regarding the legality of abortion to the states. Following the announcement of the decision by the Supreme Court, North Carolina Speaker of the state House Tim Moore (R-Cleveland) issued a press release stating that the North Carolina General Assembly was days away from adjourning and would not take up the abortion issue in this session.

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Major Increase In City Budget Not For Personnel But For Operations

The Greensboro City Council passed City Manager Tai Jaiyeoba’s recommended 2022-2023 budget of $689 million at the Tuesday, June 21 meeting with few changes and with little discussion of the need for the massive increase in spending. According to the city staff’s report, the average property owner will pay about 30 percent more in city property taxes.

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Manager’s Memo Says Only 37 New Positions In 2022-2023 Budget

City Manager Tai Jaiyeoba sent a memo to city councilmembers on Tuesday, June 21 stating that the number of new employees in the budget was 37, not 61 as had been reported. The total of 69.25 on page 7 of the manager’s recommended budget, reduced by the eight positions in the Police Department in the revised budget, leaves a total of 61.25.

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City Asks That Eric Robert’s Lawsuit Be Dismissed In Its Entirety

Although he’s no longer a mayoral candidate, the public records lawsuit filed by Eric Robert during his mayoral campaign continues on its course. Greensboro Senior Assistant City Attorney Tony Baker filed an answer on behalf of the City of Greensboro to Robert’s lawsuit in North Carolina Superior Court last week, asking that the case be dismissed.

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City Releases No Information About Budget Prior To Vote

The City of Greensboro 2022-2023 fiscal year budget is on the agenda for approval at the Tuesday, June 21 City Council meeting. The amount of the budget, the tax rate and any details about how the city revenue will be spent beginning July 1, 2022 is unknown. The agenda for the June 21 meeting published on the City of Greensboro website has this note about the proposed budget, “This item is still under construction.  The ordinance is forthcoming.”

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Guilford County Sales Tax Bill Sent To Rules Committee To Die

The mainstream media is reporting that a bill allowing Guilford County to specify that a 0.25 cent increase in sales tax would be used to pay for school capital expenses, as if it is news. The bill sponsored by Guilford County Democrat state Senators Michael Garrett and Gladys Robinson is likely to pass when pigs are flying over the ice skaters in hell.

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Water Resources Responds To New EPA Guidelines

The Environmental Protection Agency updated drinking water health advisories for PFOA and PFOS were released on June 15. The Greensboro Water Resources Department responded with a press release, including a video presentation by Water Resources Director Mike Borchers answering common questions asked about the new guidelines.

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Greensboro Has New Vision Statement No Longer Focused On Being The Best

The GSO2040 Comprehensive Plan update for the second quarter of 2022 includes a major change in Greensboro’s vision for the future. The original GSO2040 Comprehensive Plan included the vision statement, “Greensboro: Best Mid-size City in America.” City Manager Tai Jaiyeoba’s message in the GSO2040 Implementation Update states, “In a recent huddle with our executive team, we tweaked that vision to say, “Greensboro: America’s Most Desirable Mid-Sized City.  It is a bold and ambitious vision which we can realize sooner than 2040.”

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Vaughan Suggests Major Adjustments To Proposed City Budget

The Greensboro City Council is deep into the budget process, with a work session on Thursday, June 9 and one on Tuesday, June 14. Mayor Nancy Vaughan sent an email to the senior city staff and city councilmembers on Tuesday, June 14 outlining some of the concerns and questions she has about the proposed budget.

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HHS To Lease American Hebrew Academy For Migrant Children

The American Hebrew Academy, which has been vacant since it suddenly closed in June 2019, has a new tenant. On Friday, June 10, the board of directors of the American Hebrew Academy announced that the campus at 4334 Hobbs Road would be leased to the Department of Housing and Human Services (HHS) Administration for Children and Families Office of Refugee Resettlement.

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