Regional airport authority needed, but so is commuter tax
As a native Charlottean, I believe the city should retain control of the airport it developed and successfully managed for 78 years. But as a New York City resident for 20 years, I also recognize that large metropolitan areas often are managed differently than medium-sized cities.
Now that the N.C. Senate passed Bill 81 to create a regional airport authority, perhaps its also time for a commuter tax so that everyone benefiting from Charlottes public services, including infrastructure, helps pay for what they use.
There suddenly seems to be widespread recognition that the City of Charlotte is the economic engine driving this region.
Accountability will be lost under independent authority
The writer is a UNC Charlotte professor emeritus.
Students of local government have known for a long time that creation of an independent authority whether to deliver water and sewer services, police, fire, transportation or manage an airport is an effort to break the chain of accountability.
I hope all my former students recall the lessons on the days we discussed local government accountability.
Timothy D. Mead
In response to City leaders lack business sense to run airport (March 15 Forum):
Safety of our airport is at stake; Orrs group did a poor job
Jerry Orrs keystone cops allowed a teenager to walk onto the tarmac and get into the wheel well of an outbound plane, unnoticed. Any terrorist worth his salt took notice how slack the security was at the sixth busiest airport in America.
Essentially, Forum writer Marleen Alexander is complaining that our city took the necessary steps to improve security and protect our airport, our city and our people.
In response to 950 jobs to be lost as Raeford plant closes (March 15):
Government mandates to blame for job losses, plant closing
An astounding 950 jobs will be lost when the House of Raeford plant closes in Rose Hill due to the high price of corn. This is just another of the unintended consequences of the government pushing corn-based ethanol on the American public.
Ohio seeks casinos, Charlotte aspires to more; I like that
After living in Cincinnati for 30 years and just completing my first year in Charlotte, I recognize one outstanding feature.
Recently, Cincinnati opened a new in-town casino and deemed it economic progress.
Charlotte pulls in companies such as Siemens, UTC Aerospace, Chiquita and MetLife. Now that is creating wealth and true economic progress.
Thank you, Charlotte.
In response to Opponents of I-77 toll pack meeting (March 14) and related articles.
Forget toll lanes, pay drivers who use car pool lanes instead
The last thing Charlotte needs is toll lanes. We need to encourage use of existing car pool lanes instead.
Fewer cars is good for traffic flow and the environment.
Perhaps a credit of a cent or two per mile for using the existing car pool lanes would be a better idea. That would encourage people to use it, improving traffic flow and reducing congestion.
Express toll lanes reward drivers of single-occupant vehicles who can afford the privilege. That does absolutely nothing to improve the flow of traffic.
In response to When did MetLife deal go down? (March 11):
Dont give tax incentives to companies worth billions
North Carolina and Mecklenburg government bodies found themselves to be most generous in granting about $100 million in tax breaks for MetLife.
Now those incentives are being questioned.
Dont politicians do their homework before voting in closed session to give away public dollars?
Once again, a company worth billions doesnt want to pay their share of taxes here. Meanwhile, it appears many of MetLifes current out-of-state workers will move here to take most of the jobs anyway.
Note to Gov. Pat McCrory: Cant you do better?
In response to The name Francis is fitting for the new pope (March 14):
Hope popes name inspires some to watch what they eat
I was delighted to learn that the newly elected pope chose for himself the name of St. Francis of Assisi, generally known as patron saint of the animals.
I hope that Pope Francis will inspire Catholics and all persons of goodwill to show non-human animals the respect and compassion they so richly deserve, particularly when it comes to subsidizing their abuse and slaughter for food at the checkout counter.
Joining the Meatless Mondays trend may be a good start.