Local government

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    Mecklenburg ASC’s future with no sales tax bailout

    Mecklenburg voters soundly rejected a proposed quarter-cent sales tax hike in November. The $50 million tax hike to bail out the Arts & Science Council would have delivered $22.5 million per year to the Arts and Science Council, $17 million to parks and greenways; $8 million to education; and $2.5…
    Joseph Coletti, January 17, 2020
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    Two North Carolina Cities Make the Top 15 for Jobs, Salaries, and Business

    CNBC reports: Though housing is scarce and wages are stagnant across the country, a lot of American cities are booming: They offer job opportunities, thriving businesses and an abundance of places to live. Personal finance site MagnifyMoney identified America’s biggest “boomtowns” by analyzing…
    Jon Guze, January 16, 2020
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    Revaluing home ownership

    Has government policy, in promoting home ownership, actually made it more difficult to own a home? It’s almost a ridiculous question: who ever heard of a government policy having unintended effects that are opposite of intended outcome? It’s like suggesting that there was gambling at Rick’s Cafe.
    Joseph Coletti, January 16, 2020
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    “The truly progressive position is to say people have a right to camp out and sleep in front of a store but not buy a bag of pretzels there.”

    That’s Walter Olson’s take on the left’s current campaign to shut down dollar stores. For a full discussion of this latest piece of progressive lunacy, see Unjust Deserts by Steven Malanga: Communities like Oklahoma City, Tulsa, Fort Worth, Birmingham, and Georgia’s DeKalb County have passed restrictions on…
    Jon Guze, January 9, 2020
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    Clawback contracts are costly

    Governments like to use clawbacks, in which they provide a benefit but demand it back if some objective is not reached. North Carolina uses clawbacks for some tax incentives, but could not recover millions of dollars that had been paid to Dell Technologies when that company closed a plant…
    Joseph Coletti, January 6, 2020
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    Local finances could ruin your dream house

    Here’s some good advice on homebuying you may not have considered: If you’re looking to buy a house, chances are you’ve spent countless hours examining listings. Fabulous. Now, just make sure you spend a little time ensuring that house you want isn’t within the borders of a city that…
    Joseph Coletti, December 18, 2019
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    Unanimous Appeals Court rules against Concord in impact-fee fights

    A unanimous three-judge panel of the N.C. Court of Appeals has reversed a lower court and ruled against Concord in a fight over water and sewer impact fees. The ruling involves four cases filed by real-estate developers challenging impact fees assessed before 2016. The unanimous panel agreed with the…
    Mitch Kokai, December 17, 2019
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    New Raleigh City Council open to innovation?

    Short-term rentals, backyard cottages, and scooters could get a reprieve with a new mayor and reconstituted city council. New member Jonathan Melton says, “I think we can lead on micromobility,” and Mayor Mary Ann Baldwin proposes holding off enforcement of short-term rental restrictions. Anna Johnson provided the play-by-play.
    Joseph Coletti, December 4, 2019