Chapel Hill Considers Limits to Short-Term Rentals

At the March 5 meeting of the Council Committee on Economic Sustainability, town staff presented Town Council with a proposal for a pilot program to regulate short-term rentals conducted through sites like Airbnb and VRBO in Chapel Hill. 

Vote AGAINST Rezoning 1200 and 1204 MLK

Stackhouse Properties told the town of Chapel Hill that if they do not get zoning approval to erect a four-story self-storage facility on the property they own at 1200 and 1204 MLK Jr. Blvd., they will sell the property and have already received an offer from a buyer who likely will evict the 70+ families who live in the Tar Heel Mobile Home Park (MBH) that currently occupies the site.

Atack Named Carrboro Chief

Chris Atack will be the new chief of the Carrboro Police Department. Atack, a captain who is a 22-year veteran of the department, will begin his new position effective Feb. 15  

New LGBTQ Protections on Agendas

Orange County governing boards will consider adopting new safeguards against LGBTQ discrimination this month, following the expiration of a three-year state ban blocking those protections.

Council Ponders 2 Sites for New Police HQ

The new headquarters for the Chapel Hill Police Department may still turn out to be the present headquarters. While reviewing a concept plan this week for a proposed municipal services center on Weaver Dairy Road Extension that would include the headquarters, the Chapel Hill Town Council decided to explore what it would cost to redevelop the current, centrally located site and remediate safety concerns there.

A Third Try for a New Services Center

The Chapel Hill Town Council will review the latest concept plan for a municipal services center and new police headquarters Wednesday and once again will be faced with competing interests to balance.

203 Project Advances, Despite Concern

Is the Carrboro Town Council fiddling while the town burns from global warming? This month, council members approved by a 6-1 vote the schematic design of a nearly $26 million library, civic and performance space and parking deck to be built on the town parking lot at 203 South Greensboro Street between Roberson and Carr streets.

Changes Reduce Pretrial Detention

Significant reform of Orange County bail practices this year has led to a major reduction in how many people have been detained pretrial, according to a local group monitoring the changes.

The Town Begins Re-imagining Public Safety

“This can’t just be a talking group,” said Delores Bailey, a member of the town of Chapel Hill’s new Re-Imagining Community Safety Task Force. “I feel like my participation [in the task force] will help my community if this group can honestly name three of the policing problems and then solve them … we’ve got to name it and fix it.”

Carrboro Moves Ahead on Reparations

Carrboro moved closer toward reparations for Black residents last week when its town council approved a resolution that lays out next steps along the path to making amends for hundreds of years of injustice.

Marijuana: Decriminalize or Legalize?

The resolution before the Orange County Board of Commissioners at its Sept. 15 meeting called for the support of legalizing marijuana. But that wasn’t clear from the title: “A Resolution Supporting the Decriminalization of Marijuana.”

Carrboro Ponders Reparations

The agenda item on Carrboro Town Council’s Sept. 2 meeting called for a discussion on tree distribution disparity in historically Black neighborhoods, perhaps as a way to tiptoe in to the topic of reparations. But the council never got to the trees.

Zoom Replaces the Room for Councils

Twenty-five years ago, market researcher Diane Bloom conducted focus groups on the then-emerging technology of telemedicine. As a community advocate and Chapel Hill resident, she also spent many evenings at Town Hall, waiting for her turn to speak to the town council.

Carrboro Makes Juneteenth Official

Juneteenth is now an official holiday in Carrboro. The Town Council has unanimously approved a resolution making June 19 — colloquially known as Juneteenth — a paid town holiday commemorating the end of slavery in the United States.

Some Say Police Resolution Falls Short

At the Chapel Hill Town Council’s final meeting of the fiscal year, council members approved a heartfelt resolution to improve racial equity and public safety. Most community members who spoke, however, were underwhelmed.

Library Dodges a Funding Cut

The Chapel Hill Public Library dodged a bullet when a budget amendment proposed by Orange County Commissioner Chair Penny Rich to cut $568,139 in county funding to the library failed by a 2-5 vote.

Chapel Hill is Lighting Up

The night light might be bright. Duke Energy is expected to complete a month-long project of replacing 2,000 street lights on major streets in Chapel Hill with more environmentally friendly LED lights by the end of May.