In 2008 our economic ship’s engines faltered before the ship itself started to list and then to sink. Local and state government agencies joined hands with the development community to devise an interesting floatation device, eventually termed, in governmental prose, “The Permit Extension Act of 2009.”

The Extension Act, essentially, stopped the earth from spinning

            If American Idol’s Simon Cowell sat on your city council or county commission, would he be a help or a hindrance to ethical decision-making?

             As someone who seems to be swayed by no outside opinion or influence, my guess is that, from a consideration of ethics, he would be a help.

             In past posts I’ve

              When the economy returns, when developers begin to develop and builders begin to build, local governments will wake up to fair housing legislation passed last August.  The bill created legislative handcuffs that will affect affordable housing zoning and land use decisions in interesting ways, and you won’t need to see Paul Revere’s lanterns hanging in

January 1, 2010 marked the beginning of both a new year and, potentially, a new era in local government.

             Beginning January 1, all governing boards of cities and counties and boards of education and sanitary districts must adopt a code of ethics guiding decisions by that board.  The code of ethics must contain at least

In 2005, the General Assembly adopted legislation allowing local governments and developers to enter into “development agreements” for long-term, multi-phased projects.  The reasons for this legislation were several, but the primary one was the inability of governments and developers to coordinate a government’s capital improvement planning while developers were pushing for or seeking changes to

This past Thursday I commented that the Permit Extension Act of 2009 failed to include development agreements.  House Bill 1490 was hastily cobbled together to add development agreements to the list of local government approvals and to correct this oversight. 

             HB 1490 also excepts Union County from the Act, allowing it to reallocate water capacity

Yesterday the General Assembly passed the “Permit Extension Act of 2009.” In essence, the Act suspends the termination of any development approval permit that was current and valid between January 1, 2008 and December 31, 2010.  “Development approval” is broadly defined, and includes wastewater permits, erosion control permits, subdivision plat approval, air quality permits and

Earlier today Judge Elmore filed Court of Appeals case Jennings v. Fayetteville, a wrongful death case arising out of a young man’s death during a heavy rainstorm when he was caught in a drainage ditch and drowned.  The City of Fayetteville appealed the trial court’s ruling that it did not have governmental immunity.

             Generally explained,

Yesterday the General Assembly, after years of delay and hand-wringing, finally adopted Senate Bill 44, an act that codifies the laws on quasi-judicial proceedings.

             Quasi-judicial proceedings are the legal processes by which elected and appointed boards make findings of fact based upon evidence before them, and applies those facts to previously adopted standards or laws.


Two days ago the General Assembly modified NCGS 153A-343 (counties) and 160A-384 (municipalities) to require that third party rezonings (rezoning applications made by someone other than the property owner) cannot proceed until the owner has received notice by certified mail.

 Commentary: This bill was filed by Senator Tony Rand, a friend and one of my