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Charlotte Smart, Fast: Aug. 4, 2015 -- Last-ditch effort to stop the toll lanes

Traffic on I-77 near Exit 30 at Davidson.
Traffic on I-77 near Exit 30 at Davidson. mhames@charlotteobserver.com

Happy Tuesday. Here’s what you need to know to be Charlotte Smart in less than two minutes this morning.

THE BIG STORY: Toll lanes on I-77! What, you thought we were done talking about toll lanes? Nope! The county has one more thing up its sleeve.

Mecklenburg County commissioner Jim Puckett wants the board to force its delegate on the Charlotte Regional Transportation Planning Organization to oppose the project later this month.

The delegate, Vice Chair Dumont Clarke, a Democrat who has supported toll lanes in the past, said he will vote any way the board instructs him to.

What effect will this have? Minimal. Of the 68 votes, Clarke has two. Charlotte City Councilwoman Vi Lyles has 31. Also, he wouldn’t just be voting “no” on the toll lanes, but on a number of other non-toll projects in the Charlotte area.

Can someone just wake us up when this is all decided?

KERRICK TRIAL UPDATE: Monday’s opening statements in the voluntary manslaughter trial of CMPD officer Randall “Wes” Kerrick painted two very different pictures of what happened two years ago: Was Jonathan Ferrell an innocent car wreck victim seeking help or did he try to kick down the door of a young mother home alone?

Kerrick_LogReport_0803_19
Davie Hinshaw dhinshaw@charlotteobserver.com

Much of what was presented Monday centered on who Ferrell was and his behavior. The Observer has a comprehensive report on the first day of the trial.

MAKE THAT MONEY: Want to know how much your friendly neighborhood county employee makes? This database, with data current as of July 2015, will tell you just that.

LAYOFFS: According to a Charlotte Business Journal report, 179 job cuts were reported in North Carolina in July, just a bit over the 149 in June. That’s way better than last July when 511 employees were fired and July 2013 when 601 were.

131 MAIN IN DILWORTH SOLD: But don’t worry, the restaurant will remain open, according to the CBJ. The East Boulevard location sold for $2.7 million to Colson Investments out of Florida.

NO THANKS, PREZ: The Obama administration on Monday issued the first limits on carbon dioxide emissions from power plants and N.C. might just try and ignore them. The EPA rule would lower U.S. carbon emissions 32 percent below 2005 levels by 2030. Environmentalists hailed the move, and Republicans predicted it would kill jobs and raise electric rates. You know, the usual.

Now go do Tuesday things, Smart Person.

Photos: Mark Hames/Charlotte Observer; Davie Hinshaw/Charlotte Observer

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