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City Council Notes: Microbreweries, City Council Election Cycles, Police Video Disclosure, Peters Creek Development

Here’s a look at the highlights from of the November meeting of the Winston-Salem City Council’s Community Development/ Housing/ General Government Committee:

Committee approved the demolition of dilapidated houses in the city. No residents were present to appeal the city’s decisions. Oak Crest neighborhood preservation honored. Committee approved new regulations for micro-breweries. This is a relatively new category of business that the city didn’t have adequate regulations for.

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After Nearly 20 Years Behind Bars Kalvin Michael Smith Is Free At Last

The wheels of justice turn slowly. One can only imagine the mental anguish that Kalvin Michael Smith and his family have endured over the years. Kalvin Michael Smith has been waiting nearly 20 years to regain his freedom. He was convicted in 1997 of brutally assaulting Jill Marker and robbing the former Silk Plant Forest. Today’s Winston-Salem Journal has some excellent coverage of Kalvin’s case, including a timeline.

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Herbalife: A Troubled MLM, Subsidized By WSFC, Controlled By Billionare Carl Ichan

This week’s Last Week with John Oliver feature focused on multi-level marketing (MLM) companies. John Oliver and his team at HBO spent over 30 minutes breaking down just how shameful MLM business practices are. Oliver cited Mary Kay, Amway and Herbalife as examples of a $36 billion industry that most of us don’t know much about. MLM products aren’t sold at stores or online, they’re sold directly by distributors. MLM distributors are compensated principally, not from selling products, but from recruiting other distributors.

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Hillary And Michelle Rally Against Trump’s Misogyny At The Joel

Everything is at stake. That was the relatively uninspiring message that Hillary Clinton delivered in Winston on Thursday. Delivering few, if any policy specifics-Hillary said that voting, veterans, immigration, climate change and marriage equality, good jobs, good roads and good water-they’re all at stake in this year’s election. But dignity for woman was the principle message Hillary Clinton was trying to convey with her joint campaign appearance with first lady Michelle Obama. Watching Hillary speak, it’s hard not to think about how uninspiring she is.

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Caterpillar Isn’t Dell, But They’re Not The Job-Provider WS/FC Thought They Were

Caterpillar formally announced yesterday that they would be eliminating 80 jobs at their manufacturing plant on Temple Rd. CAT’s Winston-Salem workers have known for months that many of them would have their jobs eliminated. The layoffs are effective December 31. Severance packages will be given. But an uncertain future awaits the 80 workers who will be losing their jobs.

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Warren Buffet Should Make The Winston-Salem Journal Great Again

Readers of the Winston-Salem Journal have been treated to a wealth of articles over the past few days. Typically the Journal has one or two articles a day that are worth reading, supplemented with sports and advertising. But a confluence of events; the upcoming of elections and British American Tobacco’s recently announced bid to purchase Reynolds American has caused the Journal to dramatically increase its output, like the days of old. Last Friday, the Journal had a good article on early voting. Below the fold there was an informative piece on infant mortality rates in Forsyth County.

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West Salem Marketplace Plaza Fails To Get Planning Board Approval

 

“Proposed development would displace working-class neighborhood,” reads Jordan Green’s October 5th headline in Triad City Beat. That’s a theme that is unfortunately all too familiar in Winston. A working-class African American neighborhood is torn down. Affluent housing/office/retail development is erected and people of color are displaced. Over the years Winston has consistently grown and developed at the expense of its African American neighborhoods. Happy Hill is Winston’s oldest black neighborhood with a history intertwined with Old Salem. In the 1950s many homes in Happy Hill, good and bad alike were razed for the construction of Happy Hill Gardens, Winston’s first public housing development. In 1960s Highway 52 was routed through Happy Hill.

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City Council Notes: DTWS Strip Club Zoned Out Of Business, Rolling Hills Bonds Approved

Here’s a look at some highlights from Monday’s full meeting of the Winston-Salem City Council. 

A resolution honoring the Winston-Salem Chapter of the Top Ladies of Distinction, INC was approved. A resolution honoring the city’s SOAR, Successful Outcomes After Release Program was approved. More job programs are needed to reintegrate ex-prisoners back into society. SOAR received 120 applications for the eight slots available in the program. Ordnance renaming a disconnected section of Maple Street to Earline Parmon Drive passed unanimously.

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Winston’s Got Pride! Pride Winston-Salem 2016

 

There was a great turn out for this year’s Pride Winston-Salem. The week-long celebration of LGBTQ culture and lifestyle seems to grow each year. Saturday’s pride parade drew large crowds to Fourth Street. But I was particularly impressed with how many people filled Trade Street and overflowed onto Liberty Street. I believe 2011 was the first year that I attended Winston’s gay pride parade.

Central Library, Winston-Salem, N.C.

The W-S Central Library Has Been Closed For 2 Long Years; The Wait Continues

The Central Library closed on October 15, 2014. That was two long years ago today. The county commissioners let the Central Library sit empty for almost a year before the demolition of the old library began. The new Central Library is supposed to open sometime during the summer of 2017. Assuming the construction is completed on time, when the new Central Library opens Winston-Salem/Forsyth County residents will have been nearly three years without a central branch. That’s a long time to wait for a project that was approved by Forsyth County voters overwhelmingly approved in November, 2010. The conservative majority on the Forsyth County Commissioners needlessly delayed the library’s construction because they didn’t want to increase the county’s debt load.

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After Nearly 20 Years Behind Bars Kalvin Michael Smith Is Free At Last

The wheels of justice turn slowly. One can only imagine the mental anguish that Kalvin Michael Smith and his family have endured over the years. Kalvin Michael Smith has been waiting nearly 20 years to regain his freedom. He was convicted in 1997 of brutally assaulting Jill Marker and robbing the former Silk Plant Forest. Today’s Winston-Salem Journal has some excellent coverage of Kalvin’s case, including a timeline.

WP_20150607_17_05_53_Raw 1

Herbalife: A Troubled MLM, Subsidized By WSFC, Controlled By Billionare Carl Ichan

This week’s Last Week with John Oliver feature focused on multi-level marketing (MLM) companies. John Oliver and his team at HBO spent over 30 minutes breaking down just how shameful MLM business practices are. Oliver cited Mary Kay, Amway and Herbalife as examples of a $36 billion industry that most of us don’t know much about. MLM products aren’t sold at stores or online, they’re sold directly by distributors. MLM distributors are compensated principally, not from selling products, but from recruiting other distributors.

screenshot-356

Hillary And Michelle Rally Against Trump’s Misogyny At The Joel

Everything is at stake. That was the relatively uninspiring message that Hillary Clinton delivered in Winston on Thursday. Delivering few, if any policy specifics-Hillary said that voting, veterans, immigration, climate change and marriage equality, good jobs, good roads and good water-they’re all at stake in this year’s election. But dignity for woman was the principle message Hillary Clinton was trying to convey with her joint campaign appearance with first lady Michelle Obama. Watching Hillary speak, it’s hard not to think about how uninspiring she is.

img_20161013_101800808

Caterpillar Isn’t Dell, But They’re Not The Job-Provider WS/FC Thought They Were

Caterpillar formally announced yesterday that they would be eliminating 80 jobs at their manufacturing plant on Temple Rd. CAT’s Winston-Salem workers have known for months that many of them would have their jobs eliminated. The layoffs are effective December 31. Severance packages will be given. But an uncertain future awaits the 80 workers who will be losing their jobs.

img_20161015_120330753-copy-copy-copy

Warren Buffet Should Make The Winston-Salem Journal Great Again

Readers of the Winston-Salem Journal have been treated to a wealth of articles over the past few days. Typically the Journal has one or two articles a day that are worth reading, supplemented with sports and advertising. But a confluence of events; the upcoming of elections and British American Tobacco’s recently announced bid to purchase Reynolds American has caused the Journal to dramatically increase its output, like the days of old. Last Friday, the Journal had a good article on early voting. Below the fold there was an informative piece on infant mortality rates in Forsyth County.

img_20161009_082740709_hdr

West Salem Marketplace Plaza Fails To Get Planning Board Approval

 

“Proposed development would displace working-class neighborhood,” reads Jordan Green’s October 5th headline in Triad City Beat. That’s a theme that is unfortunately all too familiar in Winston. A working-class African American neighborhood is torn down. Affluent housing/office/retail development is erected and people of color are displaced. Over the years Winston has consistently grown and developed at the expense of its African American neighborhoods. Happy Hill is Winston’s oldest black neighborhood with a history intertwined with Old Salem. In the 1950s many homes in Happy Hill, good and bad alike were razed for the construction of Happy Hill Gardens, Winston’s first public housing development. In 1960s Highway 52 was routed through Happy Hill.

wp_20140417_056

City Council Notes: DTWS Strip Club Zoned Out Of Business, Rolling Hills Bonds Approved

Here’s a look at some highlights from Monday’s full meeting of the Winston-Salem City Council. 

A resolution honoring the Winston-Salem Chapter of the Top Ladies of Distinction, INC was approved. A resolution honoring the city’s SOAR, Successful Outcomes After Release Program was approved. More job programs are needed to reintegrate ex-prisoners back into society. SOAR received 120 applications for the eight slots available in the program. Ordnance renaming a disconnected section of Maple Street to Earline Parmon Drive passed unanimously.

img_20161015_135622

Winston’s Got Pride! Pride Winston-Salem 2016

 

There was a great turn out for this year’s Pride Winston-Salem. The week-long celebration of LGBTQ culture and lifestyle seems to grow each year. Saturday’s pride parade drew large crowds to Fourth Street. But I was particularly impressed with how many people filled Trade Street and overflowed onto Liberty Street. I believe 2011 was the first year that I attended Winston’s gay pride parade.

Central Library, Winston-Salem, N.C.

The W-S Central Library Has Been Closed For 2 Long Years; The Wait Continues

The Central Library closed on October 15, 2014. That was two long years ago today. The county commissioners let the Central Library sit empty for almost a year before the demolition of the old library began. The new Central Library is supposed to open sometime during the summer of 2017. Assuming the construction is completed on time, when the new Central Library opens Winston-Salem/Forsyth County residents will have been nearly three years without a central branch. That’s a long time to wait for a project that was approved by Forsyth County voters overwhelmingly approved in November, 2010. The conservative majority on the Forsyth County Commissioners needlessly delayed the library’s construction because they didn’t want to increase the county’s debt load.

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City Relaunches Liberty Street Market, Dramatic Changes Are Needed

Just a few days ago the City of Winston-Salem posted a video on its YouTube channel. On the video Regina Hall announced that the Liberty Street Market is available to rent for just $45 a day. The Liberty Street Market has been an unqualified disaster since it opened in the Northeast Ward two years ago this month. Planning and construction costs for the project costs city taxpayers over $350,000. The Liberty Street Market was described as “not just a market-a destination” by the market’s manager, Mercedes L. Miller.