Friday, February 10, 2012

John Hammer: Whatever Perkins Wants, Perkins Gets: Ross Harris, Downtown Noise and tents

"...In the past we haven't seen much patronage in Greensboro – where people who work on a winning candidate's campaign are rewarded with jobs – but it certainly appears that is what we have with the Greensboro performing arts center task force that has hired Ross Harris as the project manager.

Harris will be paid by the Community Foundation, so she is not a city employee, but this is certainly a city project and just about everyone else involved is a volunteer. Harris and an assistant will be paid. The City Council asked that this task force be set up and its sole purpose is to prepare a report to the City Council on all aspects of a performing arts center.

The Community Foundation is, of course, free to hire anyone it wants to run the task force, but this is a mandate from the Greensboro City Council, which is run by Perkins.

Perkins clearly has a lot of confidence in Harris.

She ran his successful mayoral campaign and capped that effort by holding the Bible for Perkins when he was sworn in as mayor.
Now she has a nice job, not working for the city, but working on a city project.

...Two items on the agenda dealt with noise problems downtown.

The problem is that clubs have put tents over their rooftop bars so they can use them pretty much year round, and a band on a rooftop creates a lot of noise for the neighbors.

The tent does nothing to restrict the noise.

One item changed the ordinance on tents allowing them for up to 180 days.

The old ordinance only allowed a 60 day tent permit.

There was also a proposal to restrict noise from 11 p.m. to 7 a.m., but even the City Council had not seen the proposal before the meeting, so it was continued for 30 days.

But those in the bar business would be well advised to take Perkins' statement to heart.

Perkins, who appears to have eight votes to do anything he wants, said, "I have been on Greene Street at one or two o'clock in the morning and the level of noise that came from that building is unacceptable.

It has got to be toned down.

What you do inside a building is different from what you do outside."

You can rest assured that there will be some kind of noise ordinance passed in the next couple of months."

John Hammer

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