Calculatin­g cable dollars

Time is on Asheville City Council’s side. Since taking office in December, Council members have spent several meetings, work sessions and a long public hearing trying to absorb all the details of a proposed cable-franchise contract with InterMedia. On Feb. 24, frustrated and tired, they listened to three hours of public comment. They accepted stacks […]

Asheville City Council

On Feb. 24, Asheville City Council did more than listen to three hours of questions, comments and presentations about the proposed cable-franchise contract with InterMedia. They spent an hour approving the consent agenda (which usually takes about 30 seconds), and two hours on other actions. Here are the highlights. Can’t do much about cable rates […]

Asheville City Council

As city Parks and Recreation Director Irby Brinson put it, he went from one dogfight to another during Asheville Council members’ Feb. 17 work session. First, he had to tell Council members about the dogs in Riverside Cemetery: Owners are continuing to let their dogs run free, despite a new ordinance requiring that the animals […]

Take these goals to the bank

Every year, Asheville City Council members set goals at their annual retreat. Every year, they wind up worrying about the price tag, later on. 1998 is no different. Of the top 10 goals Council members set at their retreat in Flat Rock Feb. 6-8, seven involve adopting various plans and studies (all slated to be […]

Leni’s lists save the day

What was different this year about Asheville City Council’s three-day winter retreat? For starters, Council ditched the traditional multihour litany of departmental reports. “Let’s have less staff-report time and more creative discussions about priorities and policies,” suggested Vice Mayor Ed Hay during a December work-session discussion on the upcoming retreat. To make those discussions more […]

Preparing for the worst

Could you survive for two weeks or more without electricity, tap water or a trip to the grocery store? “Everybody thinks of these things right after a disaster occurs — like the snowstorm we had Jan. 27 — then they forget about it,” says Madison County resident Chuck Blackburn. The local martial-arts instructor says it’s […]

To sign, or not to sign?

With four years left on the current contract, why should the city move forward now with a new cable-TV franchise agreement? That was the question most frequently asked at a Feb. 10 public meeting hosted by the Asheville City Council, to give residents a chance to learn about the proposed cable-franchise agreement with InterMedia. City […]

Asheville City Council

Newspaper editors don’t usually attend City Council meetings, much less address Council members. But on Feb. 10, new Asheville Citizen-Times Executive Editor George Benge went after Council like a bulldog. Thwarted despite repeated requests for access to 30 years’ worth of cable-franchise-fee documents, Benge accused Assistant City Attorney Patsy Meldrum of having a conflict of […]

Asheville City Council

They might not know too much about megahertz and fiber optics, but Asheville City Council members are starting to hit hard on the proposed cable franchise with InterMedia. “You guys have been too tough,” Vice Mayor Ed Hay told InterMedia General Manager Joe Haight and Attorney Bruce Stewart during a Feb. 3 work session. Because […]

Asheville City Council

Three hours poring over a cable ordinance is enough to make anyone’s head droop. That’s what happened to Asheville City Council members as they attempted to digest the city’s proposed cable-franchise agreement with InterMedia during their Jan. 20 work session. They heard the beginning of a staff report from Assistant Attorney Patsy Meldrum (whose microphone […]

Asheville City Council

When you’re all wet … shake it off and laugh. That’s how Asheville City Council members took the latest developments in their proposed purchase of the French Broad Golf Center, after a six-inch rainfall on Jan. 7 left only the flags on some greens still visible. Council members and city staff know how to take […]

Asheville City Council

By the time you read this, the city of Asheville might be in the golf business. Or maybe not. On Jan. 5, Parks and Recreation Director Irby Brinson gave Asheville City Council members a unique recommendation: Buy the 214-acre French Broad Golf Center in Fletcher for $3.5 million. The driving force behind his recommendation? The […]

Changing of the water guard

After losing Asheville’s mayoral election to Leni Sitnick, Charles Worley promised that his longstanding community service would continue. And he’s wasted little time taking steps to keep his word. The outgoing City Council appointed him to serve on the Alcoholic Beverage Control Board. And Sitnick let stand Worley’s 1995 appointments to several Council subcommittees, including […]