03.23.14 Your Sunday Morning Buzz

How you feel about your bracket told through sad Duke faces.

Upcoming: Webinar with Leigh Gallagher, Author of The End of the Suburbs 

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#Trending on ELGL

Report: Property Taxes Unfairly Influencing Housing Market

Strategic Direction: ELGL Strategic Planning Phase 3

The Ultimate Advisory Board

A New Era for ELGL: Webinar Library

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Transaction Wire

Former Bartow, Florida City Manager Seeks Commission Seat

Salem, OR City councilor to leave position before term ends

Ex-city manager sues East Point, Georgia over firing

‘Bold, innovative ideas’ needed in next Middletown, OH city manager

Merucci tapped to be Wayne, MI city manager

Of Lowell, MA manager finalists, two out of job, one soon to be

Cincinnati’s Public Services names new boss after employee study

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High 5

I. Infrastructure financing: A long and winding road – The world needs more infrastructure. How will we pay for it?

II. Tallying winter’s costs on city’s seasonally affected budgets – From potholes to water mains, city’s costs estimated to reach more than $100 million above normal levels.

III. All Economics Is Local – In the face of congressional inaction, the debate on raising the minimum wage is moving to the local level. As more cities and counties consider setting their own wage standards, they can learn from the policy experiments already underway.

IV. How Dangerous Are the Gas Pipes Under Your City? – Last week, a massive explosion leveled two five-story buildings on an East Harlem street in New York City, killing eight and injuring dozens more.

V. ‘The Simpsons’ Unveils a New Springfield Public Transit Map – The episode provided a much-needed update to the extent of Springfield’s public-transit system, which is revealed to include many color-coded lines and stations like Mattress City, Guidopolis, Unauthorized Beatles Museum, and the “Varmint District.”

50 Nifty

Nine charter amendments on Venice, FL ballot – In addition to the referendum on the renewal of a property tax for Sarasota County public schools, Venice voters have nine other decisions to make Tuesday.

City fears ‘snaggletooth’ of vacated Square lots – Aging buildings sometimes must get torn down, but many worry about the “snaggletooth” look left behind in a downtown area.

The Fascinating Remains of Rochester’s ‘Subway’ – Not much of Rochester, New York’s rapid transit system remains. The network of rail cars launched in 1927 and served its last passenger on June 30, 1956.

Mapping the Imbalances of New York’s Popular, Troubled Bike-Share – Thursday was the first day of spring. According to Ed Rademaekers, it was also the worst day of the year for NotSpots in New York City.

California’s Drought: More Wildfires, Higher Food Prices – The American West saw a few rainstorms this past month, but it’s been like sprinkling water on a heated cast-iron skillet. Severe drought persists across many states and, looking ahead, the arid conditions will likely remain or grow even worse.

Will the new transportation funding initiatives pass? – Former U.S. Transportation Secretary James Burnley, who co-chairs the transportation practice at the Baltimore-based Venable law firm, weighs in on the important issue of federal transportation funding.

Parched California Town Risks Running Out of Water – With extremely low supplies, Lake of the Woods is on the verge of drought-driven disaster.

Oakland to pay $4.5 million to Occupy Vet – Scott Olsen, who was struck by beanbag during confrontation with police in 2011, suffered brain damage.

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Portlandia

Jail Overcrowding Be Damned, the County Wants More Prisoners – In 2012, Multnomah County Sheriff Dan Staton was forced to release 913 inmates because of overcrowding—an alarming figure that spurred elected officials into conversations about tweaking policy. But despite that work, 2013 was shaping up even worse.

Jack Graham, Portland’s fired top executive, says he made a ‘judgment call’ in budget scandal – Making his first public statements since being fired by Mayor Charlie Hales, Portland’s former top administrator, Jack D. Graham, said Friday that city officials and an outside investigator have made misleading and stigmatizing statements about his role in a 2012 budget scandal.

Dreams of a six-lane Oregon 217 live in new Metro transportation plan –  Metro’s latest proposed regional transportation plan, which the federal government requires to be updated every four years for the Portland area to be considered for transportation funding, gives a lot of love to the idea of expanding 217 to six lanes.

Mom, is that you? Feather duster briefly serves as surrogate to Oregon Zoo condor chick – Announcing the most creative use in the history of humankind for a feather duster: as a surrogate parent.

Trader Joe’s: Portland Mayor Charlie Hales has Monday meeting with grocery officials, NAACP backs project – Portland Mayor Charlie Hales is making a quick trip to Southern California on Monday to personally ask Trader Joe’s officials to reconsider opening a store in Northeast Portland.

Portland’s Alta Bicycle Share seeks help from investors as Citi Bike goes broke – Alta Bicycle Share, the company contracted to run Portland’s much-delayed $4 million bike-sharing system, has responded to a report that its New York City network is going broke by saying it is seeking help from investors

 

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Oregon exports stall as Washington’s foreign sales soar on the backs of Boeing and other giants – Oregon exports, which soared to a record $19.4 billion in 2008, plunged the next year and have been flat ever since.

Washington Mudslide Kills 3 Searchers Seek Survivors – Rescue crews searched into the night for survivors from a massive mudslide in Washington state that killed at least three people, after hearing voices from the debris field pleading for help.

Decades of toxic waste dredged from the Duwamish – Waste from industry is being dredged up from the Lower Duwamish Waterway, dumped on barges, then onto rail cars, then moved to a disposal site in Klickitat County. By 2015, enough muck will have been hauled away to fill nearly 95 Olympic-size swimming pools.

Elusive numbers make it hard to grade state’s health coverage – How will Washington — one of the most successful states in enrolling residents in health insurance plans through its exchange — show that it has accomplished its goal?

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Pure Midwest

Buried debris hikes costs of city projects for Edina’s outdoor hockey rink – Discovery of concrete chunks, tires or tanks can cause delays, bigger bills.

Michigan Judge Strikes Down Same-Sex Marriage Ban – A federal judge ruled Michigan’s ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional. That makes it the ninth state in three months where courts have ruled in favor of same-sex couples seeking to marry.

Snow falls again in Chicago, more on the way: ‘It’s not over yet’ – Lake-effect snow is falling in Chicago this morning and could drop as much as two inches of total accumulation today, according to meteorologists.

Northbound Lake Shore Drive to be impacted as construction begins on ‘Flyover’ – The right lane and shoulder of northbound upper Lake Shore Drive will be closed Monday between Illinois Street and Grand Avenue as construction begins on the Navy Pier Flyover project.

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South by Southwest

Longview pays off rocker Ted Nugent to not perform – The city of Longview put the stranglehold on “Cat Scratch Fever” — but it cost thousands of dollars.

Here is the proposed city-wide smoking ban ordinance that will come before the Paris City Council on Monday – whereas,  the  City  Council of the City of Paris, Texas  finds  that primary  and secondary tobacco smoke inhalation  is  harmful to  a person’s  health.

Crews Try to Contain Oil Spill After Collision in Glaveston Bay – A barge carrying nearly 1 million gallons of thick, sticky oil collided with a ship in Galveston Bay Saturday, leaking an unknown amount of the fuel into the popular bird habitat as the peak of the migratory shorebird season was approaching.

San Antonio suburb of Von Ormy goes ‘zero tax, zero fee’ to recruit business, provide services – As motorists speed past this tiny community along Interstate 35, they might not realize they have just passed the “Freest Little City in Texas,” as Mayor Art Martinez de Vara sometimes calls it.

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The Southeast

Virginia city downriver from coal ash spill suffers – When a massive coal ash spill was swept down the Dan River through Danville, the toxic stew smudged this proud mill city’s vision of building a new, diversified economic base.

State of Florida predicts billion-dollar surplus – Florida’s chief economist is projecting a $1.2 billion or bigger surplus, but don’t expect that windfall here.

Va. Beach council likes mass transit presentation – When the company behind the failed magnetic levitation — or maglev — train at Old Dominion University submitted a proposal to build a mass transit system using the technology in Virginia Beach, city officials seemed skeptical.

Manassas, VA city manager presents ‘snap shot’ of next year’s budget – New Manassas City Manager Patrick Pate presented a $227 million proposed budget to city council this month.

The New York Times takes a 36-hour visit to Raleigh – Today, North Carolina’s capital is awash in entrepreneurial energy from homegrown clothing labels and converted art galleries to craft breweries and ambitious restaurants.

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