Orange County

  

Gerry Cohen is probably the most important North Carolina politician you don't know.

Light rail transit with Amtrak visualization of area near Durham Station Transportation Center.
Triangle Transit Authority

An advisory committee is set to meet for the first time to make recommendations for the next steps in building a light rail line in Orange and Durham counties. 

The group of government representatives, university officials, and business leaders convenes Friday morning in Chapel Hill.  Triangle Transit Authority plans to build a 17-mile line from UNC Hospitals to downtown Durham. 

Several feet of flood waters trap cars on West Franklin St. in Chapel Hill Sunday afternoon.
Bart Smith / Facebook

Residents of Orange and Durham counties are cleaning up after torrential rain led to flood waters several feet deep. 

Officials in Chapel Hill say rescuers evacuated at least 40 people Sunday from flooded homes and vehicles.  They were taken to a Red Cross shelter at Smith Middle School. 

Some of the farmers at Transplanting Traditions.
Transplanting Traditions Community Farm

On 4 acres just outside Chapel Hill, nearly 150 Karen refugees till the soil as they did back home in Myanmar, also known as Burma.

Transplanting Traditions Community Farm is educating locals about Burmese vegetables and cuisine, and teaching the refugees about American produce, with the eventual goal of setting them up as full-time farmers.

Walking a dog on Bolin Creek Trail.
Catherine Lazorko, Town of Chapel Hill

Orange County’s population may be smaller than that of its neighboring counties, but its greenways are no less loved. Chapel Hill and Carrboro both tout themselves as bike and pedestrian friendly towns, and Hillsborough has taken pains to create elaborate bicycle and walking routes throughout its downtown area that highlight dozens of historical buildings.  

Orange County leaders may be forced to change how its recycling program is paid for.  The county says its recycling efforts have reduced trash in landfills by nearly 60 percent.  The county has been charging fees on property tax bills for the last decade to help pay for the program.  But the fee was never approved by the General Assembly.  The county manager's suggestion to privatize recycling pickup was resisted by some county commissioners. 

markdorosin.org

Mark Dorosin’s path to civil rights law was never straight. He followed many a winding course, skirting the optimism of teaching, exploring the pride of public office and even holding down the 9 to 5 as a manager at Blockbuster Video.

Orange County's board of commissioners will discuss a county-wide ban on smoking in public places at its meeting tomorrow. The county's Board of Health voted last month to recommend that smoking be prohibited in areas beyond restaurants and bars. Pam Diggs with the Orange County Health Department says those areas would include places where people congregate for work, transit and recreation.

Orange County voters will decide whether to support a tax increase for public transportation on Election Day. The measure is part of a regional plan to improve transit across the Triangle.

Voters in Orange County will choose whether to vote for a half-cent sales tax increase on November sixth. If they approve the measure, the tax would generate about five million dollars a year for new buses and improved service, an Amtrak station in Hillsborough and a proposed light rail connection from UNC to downtown Durham.

Durham and Orange county residents will get a closer look today and tomorrow at a proposed light rail transit plan.

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