Local News Roundup: CMS Prepares For In-Person Class; Transit Plan Gets Movement; New Names For Charlotte Streets

City Council okays a recommendation to rename Charlotte streets with white supremacist ties, but what those new names might be is up in the air. We’ll talk about the council discussion.

Charlotte’s transit plan will need some tweaks if City Council wants to get the regional support it’s hoping for. We’ll update you about what’s being said in council and in northern Mecklenburg County.

This week, Gov. Roy Cooper signed a COVID-19 relief bill — the first of 2021. The bill is designed to help schools reopen, extend a deadline for parents coping with remote learning and fund vaccine distribution. We’ll discuss.

And Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools students return to the classroom. The youngest students begin in-person learning on Monday, keeping the plan that was approved in February. We’ll talk about what this will mean for each age group as well as continued concerns for risk to teachers and students.

Mike Collins and our roundtable of reporters delve into the week’s top news on the Charlotte Talks local news roundup.

Guests:

Erik Spanberg, managing editor for the Charlotte Business Journal

Mary C. Curtis, columnist for Rollcall.com, host of the Rollcall podcast “Equal Time” and contributor at WCCB-TV

Claire Donnelly, WFAE health reporter

Hunter Saenz, reporter for WCNC

Exploring America’s Racial Divide

It’s a challenge that has been with America since its beginning: Where are Americans now, as they deal with a pandemic, economic upheaval and a racial reckoning and what are the paths to unity?

POLITICAL WRAP: How Soon Should Students Return to School?

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – The debate over school re-openings intensifies, amid a rise in coronavirus cases.

It comes as new data shows nearly one in four American teachers are at higher risk of serious illness if they contract coronavirus.

Click above for more with our political contributor, Mary C. Curtis.

Charlotte Talks Local News Roundup: VP Pence Visits CLT; Huntersville Ed Committee Recommendations

On this edition of the Charlotte Talks local news roundup:

The Huntersville education advisory commission recommends that the town operate its own charter school and split from CMS, a move that one CMS official says is “politically driven. How likely is this outcome?

Vice President Mike Pence was in the Queen City this week for an RNC Kickoff Meeting, as next year’s Convention, which will be held in Charlotte, is getting closer. What was the purpose of this visit, and what have we learned about plans for the 2020 Republican National Convention?

As abortion legislation is passed around the country, rallies are taking place nationwide, and here in the Queen City. We’ll talk about a Charlotte rally where anti-abortion and abortion-rights advocates clashed.

In South Carolina, the House and the Senate have now approved around $120 million in tax breaks to offer to the Carolina Panthers to entice them to move practice fields and the team’s headquarters to the state from North Carolina.

And get ready to start your engines — this weekend is the second “Race Weekend” in a row for Charlotte (we hosted the NASCAR All-Star Race last Saturday, and this weekend is the Coca-Cola 600). What should we know to attend the event or avoid the crowds?

Those stories and much more with Mike Collins and a panel of journalists on the Charlotte Talks local news roundup.

Guests:

Mary C. Curtis, columnist for Rollcall.com and WCCB

Alexandra OlginWFAE Reporter

Glenn Burkins, editor and publisher of QCityMetro.com

Jonathan Lowe, reporter for Spectrum News 

Opinion: Is It Too Early for North Carolina Democrats to Get Their Hopes Up, Again?

In 2008, Barack Obama’s slim North Carolina victory in his first presidential run had Democrats in the state celebrating in the present and dreaming of a blue future in what had been considered a (relatively) progressive Southern state. Boy, were those dreams premature.

But 10 years later — after new redistricting and voting rules solidified GOP control in both the state and U.S. House delegations and a bill on LGBT rights made the state a poster child for conservative social policies — Democrats are again seeing light at the end of a deep-red tunnel.

March For Students and Rally For Respect

CHARLOTTE, NC –On the first day of the N.C. legislature’s short session, more than 15,000 teachers will be heading to Raleigh in an action they are calling the March for Students and Rally for Respect. Unlike teacher walkouts in other states, notably West Virginia, North Carolina’s action will be one day only – but teachers taking part hope it won’t end there.

Is the South really as bad as a report says it is?

CHARLOTTE — When the headline is “Why the South is the worst place to live in the U.S.,” it’s an invitation to trash talk. But isn’t that what makes stories like this one in The Post so much fun? They are bound to unleash regional pride and get the blood flowing and the stereotypes flying in the comments section.

Cash for teachers? Politics, money and education


 

CHARLOTTE, NC: Governor Pat McCrory announced an increase in base pay for new teachers. Washington Post columnist and local political writer Mary C. Curtis talks with Terrance Bates about why some are criticizing the Governor’s plan.

North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory balances hometown expectations, GOP austerity

“He’s got a very difficult balance to strike,’ said Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx. ‘The expectations that are there within his party may not mesh well with the expectations people in this state have.”

DNC 2012 Notebook: Southern-fried pessimism intrudes on the party

Meet the new South, which has some of the same problems as the old South.

It’s undeniable that a black mayor welcoming a black president into a city can tout skyscrapers, sports and a thriving arts scene. But despite those signs of growth, in the region that has gained political prominence — both parties chose the South for their national conventions — some intractable challenges remain, especially for the poor and the young.

Let’s put it this way: Despite the goodies, a weekend brunch for journalists, with a lineup of experts, was demoralizing. Held at the Charlotte Observer, the topic was “The South and Presidential Politics 2012: Red States and Purple States.” The moderator was PBS’ Judy Woodruff, a Duke grad. The panel was UNC Chapel Hill all the way.