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The Daily Tar Heel

Michael Chen


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Teachers Identify Outdated Programs to Lessen Workload

Over the next few weeks, the Chapel Hill-Carrboro Board of Education and district officials will consider complaints recently made by overburdened teachers. At the schools' request, the district has been adding new programs that are geared at promoting educational and life skills for students in grades K-12. But teachers are saying the new initiatives, coupled with existing programs, are leaving them stretched too thin. Teachers have said that the programs are great additions but that some of these services take away from their main task in the classroom: teaching.

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School Board Discusses Cuts

For the first time this year, the Chapel Hill-Carrboro Board of Education revealed its recommendations for the 2002-03 school year budget, and officials expect cuts to come from at least two programs. With a budget crisis still festering on both the state and municipal levels, school board members faced the task of determining areas and programs from which to reduce funds. The figure for the Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools' budget has yet to be finalized.

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We Didn't Start The Fire

The Chapel Hill firetrucks lined up outside what used to be Hudson Belk should not alarm University Mall shoppers. The Chapel Hill Fire Department is taking advantage of the vacancy left by Hudson Belk by conducting training exercises at University Mall. The fire department was given permission by University Mall officials to perform its exercises while that part of the building is vacant.

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Workshop Details New Town Designs

Workshop Details New Town Designs By Michael Chen Staff Writer About 30 residents and local officials gathered Saturday for Chapel Hill's second downtown design workshop to discuss what the Chapel Hill Town Council has identified as "opportunity areas." These areas are sections of downtown Chapel Hill that could be enhanced with mixed-use developments that would provide housing, business offices, retail stores and parking for residents.

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Area Retailers Don't Fear New Mall

While Chapel Hill businesses do not anticipate losing dollars to Durham's new mall, steps are being taken on the local scene to lure outside customers. The Streets at Southpoint, a new mall in Durham with more than 150 stores, opened March 8. But Aaron Nelson, president of the Chapel Hill-Carrboro Chamber of Commerce, said the area's economic future is anything but dim and cited the opening of new businesses at University Mall.

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Commission Plans to Promote Business

At a town budget work session Wednesday afternoon, the Chapel Hill Downtown Commission presented its annual report for 2001 and delineated goals for the upcoming year to the Chapel Hill Town Council. Margaret Skinner, chairwoman of the commission's board of directors, spoke on behalf of the Downtown Commission at the meeting. Skinner said she applauded the Town Council for its support of the Downtown Commission in 2001, thanking them for supplying $45,000 of its total $56,000 budget. "We are looking to develop and encourage the vitality and growth of the downtown business district

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Town Council Gives Nod to Next Step in Rizzo Project

The Chapel Hill Town Council voted unanimously Monday night to expedite review for a special-use permit for UNC's Paul J. Rizzo Conference Center, meaning construction will most likely start before the end of the summer. The center, located in the Meadowmont mixed-use development off N.C. 54, is owned and operated by UNC's Kenan-Flagler Business School. The business school primarily uses the building for social functions.

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Town, University Expect Talks to Keep Relationship Healthy

As the town begins to articulate its design for downtown Chapel Hill, there is opportunity for emotions to flare up again between Chapel Hill and the University. The town and UNC clashed over the implementation of the University's Development Plan, an eight-year plan for campus growth, last year when University plans overlapped with existing town residences. But so far, officials on both sides say they have been working hand in hand during preliminary downtown planning sessions and look forward to improved town-gown relations.

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Carrboro Gears Up to Weather Budget Crisis

Carrboro officials say they understand Gov. Mike Easley's goal in retaining a portion of the town's funds but hope the move is not long-term. N.C. mayors and Easley attended the N.C. Metropolitan Coalition meeting Wednesday to discuss the effects of statewide budget cuts on local municipalities. Carrboro Board of Alderman member Alex Zaffron, who represented the town at Wednesday's meeting, could not be reached for comment Thursday. Easley announced last week that the state expects a $900 million budget shortfall. The town of Carrboro stands to lose $299,284.

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Local Bar Owners Detail Policies About Recycling

Although there are no town ordinances in place, an Orange County official says Chapel Hill's bar scene deserves a gold star for its focus on recycling. Most local bars participate in the Commercial Glass Program, a countywide recycling program geared at eliminating the buildup of nonbiodegradable materials in the landfills. The program went into effect in 1992, and about 65 Chapel Hill businesses recycle, including more than seven bars.

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