More of what’s going around:
-Buncombe County commissioners on Tuesday approved a 2.6-cent property tax increase on Tuesday. Most of the new money will go to support education initiatives, the Sheriff’s Department and toward paying down debt on a new health and human services building and parking deck on Coxe Avenue.
-A new state law that would change the way members are elected to Asheville City Council moved another step closer to becoming law, reports Blue Ridge Public Radio. A N.C. House committee passed the bill, and N.C. Rep. Brian Turner of Asheville said he would support the bill if it is amended to create an independent commission for the task of drawing the new districts.
-Reminder: The Big Crafty returns to downtown Asheville on July 16.
-Steve Earle is playing the Orange Peel on July 11.
-The city of Asheville is looking for feedback on its draft comprehensive plan. Once approved, the plan will be an important guiding document for city staff and decision-makers for the next 15-20 years.
–Costume Drama: A Fashion Show will be held Friday, July 7 at 7:30 pm at the Renaissance Hotel, according to a press release. In the show, local designers choose a themed category and create wearable art using elements from that category. There are four design categories; this year, “Trashion” and “Ribbon” are two categories that are new to the runway. General admission tickets to the Asheville Community Theatre fundraising event are $35.00 and VIP tickets are $125.00 and include open bar, appetizers, and priority seating. Tickets are available over the phone at 828-254-1320, online at www.ashevilletheatre.org, or in person at the Asheville Community Theatre Box Office at 35 East Walnut St. in downtown Asheville.
-Hatch This, Western North Carolina’s startup throwdown, is officially set for Sept. 8-10, according to a press release. Think of Hatch This as a mash-up of “Startup Weekend,” a hackathon, and an accelerator; participants will get paired with a team and condense a ton of learning into a high-energy sprint to craft and build a business, according to the release.
Jones St Chronicles @JonesStWatcher
NC Senate votes to concur with House on S285 (requires #Asheville to move to district elections), 32-11. It’s now law. #ncga #ncpol
At the same hearing where the bill forcing districts on Asheville was approved, another bill creating districts for Cabarrus County elections was passed. Funny thing though – the Cabarrus bill specifically allows for a referendum, and districts would not take effect if the voters didn’t want them.
The Asheville bill that Brian Turner is now supporting specifically bars Asheville voters from having that same choice about districts in a ballot referendum.
Glad to hear that Senate Bill 285 will get bipartisan support. Although, it’s not really needed.