Greensboro

In Greensboro, a day-long conference today will look at developing and improving new kinds of fuel. The Biofuels Center is bringing together a collection of small business owners, educators and environmentalists. A series of panel discussions will share ideas about forms of sustainable energy, bio fuels and the advantages to local economies. Leif Forer is manager of the Civic and Small-Scale Biofuels Center.

Leif Forer:  "The big picture goal is to get a lot of new biofuels produced in North Carolina and enrich our communities and or environment while doing so."

In Greensboro, voters could decide the fate of a proposed downtown performing arts center.

It's not clear yet if residents will in fact get to vote on a proposed $60 million downtown performing arts center. The City Council voted seven to two on Tuesday to pursue a voter bond referendum, and deny the request from a citizen task force for local government to allocate the money. Ross Harris is the project manager of GPAC, the organization working to get the venue built.

A new program in Greensboro aims to keep old mattresses from being sent to the dump.

In what is believed to be the first initiative of its kind in the country the City is partnering with Mattress Go Round. The Greensboro company recycles old mattresses and box springs by repairing, sanitizing and rebuilding them for resale. President and Founder of the company Robert Savino says keeping the bulky mattresses out of landfills will save space and money.

Skip Alston (center) at one of his final meetings as County Commissioner
Jeff Tiberii

Tonight marks the end of a political era in Greensboro. Melvin "Skip" Alston is stepping down after 20 years as a Guilford County Commissioner. Alston has been a polarizing figure during his time on the board, clashing with conservative commissioners while rarely holding back an opinion. Alston says he's not done with politics, although where he will emerge next isn't yet clear.

Greensboro has been selected as the site of the 2015 US Figure Skating Championships. This competition came to Greensboro – and North Carolina – for the first time in 2011, following an Olympic year. In 2015 US Figure Skating’s largest event will return to the state, a year after the winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia. Greensboro Coliseum General Manager Matt Brown.

Matt Brown: "This is a significant accomplishment for Greensboro. Many within the sport of figure skating questioned, how well figure skating championship would fare in the south. Boy, didn’t we surprise them."

Some prominent North Carolinians are joining a national campaign to "Fix the Debt". North Carolina's "Fix the Debt" campaign hopes to set a bipartisan example with former Republican governor Jim Holshouser and former Democratic governor Jim Hunt standing side-by-side.

Jim Hunt: "Everyone in Washington worthy of representing the American people must be willing to compromise."

The mayor of Greensboro is trying to avoid having his home foreclosed on while paying down his debts to the IRS.

Mayor Robbie Perkins has been in commercial real estate for 32 years. He says an industry depression combined with a split from his wife has left him in a bad financial circumstance. The IRS put a lien on his Greensboro home early this year in an effort to get him to pay some of the $86,000 he owed in federal taxes.

City inspectors in Greensboro lost track of more than 300 cases of housing and nuisance violations.

The violations ranged from overgrown lots to structures that should have been condemned. In some instances city inspectors found housing code violations, but didn’t follow up and were not held accountable by supervisors. The lost violations effect between 50 and 75 properties. Councilwoman Nancy Vaughn says a new computer system didn’t cross-check with old cases.

The Carolina Theater in Greensboro is commemorating is 85th anniversary tonight with the debut of a documentary.


The half hour film looks at the theater's 36 years of segregation, how a lack of funding almost led it to become a venue for pornographic films, and its role as an independent non-profit, today. Keith Holiday is the President and CEO of Carolina Theater. He recalled a North Carolina A&T student and later well-known Civil Rights Activist whose efforts helped to desegregate the theater in the early 1960s.

BB&T plans to bring 1,700 jobs to Greensboro in the next five years.

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