Friday, August 21, 2015

Yes, Apex really is the best place to live

Apex really is the best small town to live in according to Money Magazine's 2015 list of best towns! Check it out. As the town grows it has retained the small town character and has much more to offer than in the past. The location is near everything and yet it remains a great place to live, work and play!

Nearby amenities include shopping, entertainment, dining, parks, trails, beaches, mountains and lots more. The full article tells more about living in the best place in the USA... 2015 Best Small Town To Live In

Friday, September 20, 2013

Save a house, save a part of the history of Apex...

Save a house, save a part of the history of Apex...

Historic Cash Home in Downtown Apex NC
The Apex Baptist Church has decided that having a few more parking spaces is more important that saving a historic home located at 112 S Salem Street in Apex. The home in these photos is the 1910 Cash House located next door to the church building. It is one of the oldest homes in the Town of Apex and was built in the very early years of the town.

The church Deacons say that additional parking spaces are much more important now than continuing to have the historic home available for Church activities or to remain a part of Historic Downtown Apex. The Deacon group also refuses to listen to the many community and church members that want the home kept for the church and community. Since the home was sold to the church in 1985, it has been used for classroom space and other church activities and outreach ministries. As of this writing a decision has been made to destroy the home and a demolition permit has already been obtained from Town of Apex.

1910 Cash Home in Historic Downtown Apex
If you want a historic home to restore, or have a friend or acquaintance that might, please call the church as soon as possible and ask if they will give or sell it to you and wait to allow you time to have it moved. The word on the street is that they have tried to find someone that would move the house but have failed to do so and say they do not have a place to move it to or can afford to do so.

The town is widely known for its "small town look and feel" and has been named one of the best places to live in 2013. One of numerous features of the town is having a number of preserved historical homes, many of which are on the Apex Historical Society annual home tour in each December. Seems like the new, younger Deacons in the church do not have the same values the town is known for and are willing to tear down this home that has been part of the Historic Downtown Apex district since 1910.

Even if you do not have a place to have the home moved to, demand that the church keep the church until a new owner can be found and it can be moved to a new site.

Call the church today (919-362-6176) and ask them to save the home and keep it protected and preserved for all of Apex. Tell the church and Deacons that the home is a part of the culture of the town and must be preserved for future generations.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Old Apex family estate to be destroyed by builder

1945 John Amos Pearson Home

Interested in having a beautiful town park along North Salem Street in Apex?

Save the North Salem Street corridor - build a community park instead of packing 80 townhomes into the area and adding some 500 cars a day to the street...

Tell the Town Council and Planning Board and Planning Director (see below to send email to the Town Council, Planning Board and Planning Director) to acquire the Dr. J K Pearson estate at 1015 N Salem Street and establish a new park for the community and fund it in the new budget. 

A builder has currently placed the property under contract (March-April 2013) and plans to tear down the 1945 family home of John Amos Pearson and build a sea of 80 town-homes on the property. This will destroy forever one of the largest parcels of wooded land along North Salem Street in Apex. This land was built by John Amos Pearson in 1945 to be his homeplace and was later passed down to his son, Dr J K Pearson.  Dr Pearson passed away in January, 2010, and ownership passed to his wife and his three grown children. After his wife, the last family resident,  moved out it was listed for sale. John Amos Pearson was one of five siblings born and raised in the Maynard-Pearson House on Olive Chapel road. After growing up in a home built in 1870 Amos built the home shown above on North Salem Street and lived there with his wife. This was his second and final home on North Salem. 

Unfortunately the 1015 N Salem Street property was never listed as a historic site and the Town has taken the view that it will not stop the builder from destroying the home and building on the property as long as the construction meets the Town's building code. An ironic twist to this dilemma is that two homes adjacent to this property at the corner of Salem and Peakway ARE registered as historic homes and are also under contract by the builder. The town will not stop destruction of those two historic homes but can require the builder to wait four years to build on those two sites just next to this one because they were listed as historic sites. One of those homes (The old Hunt house on North Salem) is a historic site dating back to 1910.  

Magnolia Lane
1015 North Salem Street, Apex, NC
The Pearson property is surrounded by new and old homes and making it into a neighborhood park would preserve a part of that area for the community and the town. Allowing it to be developed as a large townhome project will destroy the beauty of the property and forever alter the character of the Salem Street corridor. 

The Town of Apex has previously declared the Salem Street corridor as a protected area in order to preserve the "look and feel" of the early days of Apex. Ask the Council to continue to preserve that area and purchase the property and add it to the Town park system. This is the last chance to save the beautiful property and prevent construction of mass housing and addition of  hundreds of cars  a day to the already overloaded neighborhood.

In a 2013 planning survey by Town of Apex, area residents have made it clearly known they want more neighborhood parks and want the Town to preserve dwindling parcels of undeveloped land in the area. This is one of the last intact parcels along Salem Street large enough to make into a community park. The home could also be preserved for community activities. 

Tell the Town of Apex you want this property saved

Contact the Town Council  and the Planning Board today (send email to Apex Town Council and the Apex Planning Board and Planning Director) and tell them you want the Town to acquire the land and create a park for the Salem Street area.

Your input will make a difference in saving this beautiful property in Apex!

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Friendship High School or West Apex High School?

If you agree the new western Apex high school should be named "Friendship High School" let it be known...

New Apex school complex in Friendship community
southwest of Apex
Friendship community has always been known as "Friendship" in southern Wake County just north of New Hill, but it was not in Apex. Yes, it is part of the greater Apex area, but it has traditionally been known only as Friendship. The name is special, as noted in an article in the March, 2013, edition of Southwest Wake News.

Friendship existed before the Civil War and before the Town of Apex became Apex (The town was incorporated in 1873). As the Southwest Wake News article cites from history books, the name Friendship was chosen by community members (Whites, Blacks and American Indians) that wanted a name that could represent all people in that part of the county and give the community its own identity.

When Wake County was planning the new school in 2011, the Apex Town Manager thought the name West Apex High School might be the most suitable name from several being considered. The name was discussed with the Town Council and from there it became associated with the school. At the time, this was thought to be a name that would designate where the school is located and associate it with Apex.

The other side of this issue is that there is already an Apex High School, the names would be similar, and it will likely be a source of confusion in the future and not allow the new school to have its own clear identity. Giving it a name based on its location and the community will give the new school its own clear identity.

Residents of the Friendship community have launched a campaign to get the new school's name changed to Friendship High School to reflect the area's heritage and create a unique recognition of the new location. In early March some 350 people had signed the petition to have this change made.

Your opinion will help in this effort. Click to send an email with your comments to the Apex Town Council ( and tell them you want the school named Friendship High School.

Read more about the petition and the community...

Monday, August 22, 2011

If a tree falls in the woods

If a tree falls in the woods and no one is around to hear it,
does it make a sound?
The age old riddle has been solved... YES!

A tree recently fell in a neighbor's yard around midnight. Around that time there was a loud rumbling sound like thunder in the distance followed by a large crunchy THUMP! On inspection the next morning, this tree was found lying in the grass.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Monday, July 4, 2011

Apex votes down jobs - new business rejected in Beaver Creek Commons

Apex Town Council has struck once again and cast votes against allowing a new McDonald's restaurant to be built in Beaver Creek Commons.

This means the Town Council voted down new jobs, new tax revenue and is preventing a new food business from opening in the Beaver Creek Commons shopping center. The sole reason cited was that the McDonald's would bring too many vehicles to the already heavily congested street leading to the restaurants and stores.

This also means the Town Council has blocked creation of badly needed construction jobs and 30-40 long term jobs for employees when the site opens for business. And the Town is declining a healthy addition to the tax base during an already depressed local economy.

It is interesting that the current traffic problem in the shopping center is a direct outcome from the traffic plan approved by the Town Council when Beaver Creek was built just a short time ago. The Council and Town Planners claim they study traffic patterns and impact of new construction but they missed the mark significantly on this shopping center. Convoluted road patterns and lack of alternate routes to stores and shops in the center have led to a nightmare for customers of the many stores packed into the space with insufficient access to and from shops. Council also approved the existing traffic pattern that allows a great amount of residential traffic to flow through the shopping center to homes and apartments located directly behind the stores.

There are solutions to the traffic issues, but they will be difficult to implement now that the shopping center has been opened. Adding alternate streets behind and around the congested areas could allow traffic to flow in a circular pattern and eliminate most of the left turn issues now plaguing the area.  Routing residential traffic for homes behind the shopping center to other streets would have a major impact in reducing the volume now experienced in front of the stores.

As for the proposed McDonald's restaurant, Council should allow the site to be built. There is no factual evidence that shows that the traffic would increase by 1100 vehicles as suggested in the third party study. It is very likely some of the traffic to the new business would come from the existing volume. As for the traffic level at Chick-Fil-A, that parking lot is already so crowded it is unsafe to navigate in the lot many times and this has nothing to do with whether the street traffic increases or not. This issue comes from poor planning on traffic flow inside the Chick-Fil-A property. Read more about voting down a new McDonald's...

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Old Glory shows signs of aging in downtown Apex

The Town of Apex continues to muddle right along according to a news item reported in the Southwest Wake News this week. A June 22, 2010, article in the weekly paper tells about the Town hanging faded American flags along Salem Street in preparation for the annual July 4th downtown events.The flags are hung in advance of each Memorial Day and left up until after Labor Day as a patriotic gesture.

Sounds like a number of the Town leaders have not served in the US Military and don't understand the views of those that do consider hanging US Flags as a patriotic activity to honor those that do serve to protect our country and values. If they had, then they would not hang faded or worn flags for any occasion and would make the effort to replace them as needed.

Folks around town started noticing the faded condition of the flags as soon as they were hung this year. When asked why the Town is using faded flags, the response was that the Town's budget did not allow for replacing the flags under this year's plan.

The budget did not include a $2,100 line item for replacing the flags this year as has been the practice every four years in the past. According to the newly hired Town Spokeswoman, Stacie Galloway, the Town could find some money to buy new flags but this could be used as an opportunity for local citizens to get involved and donate $35 to buy replacement flags. Never mind that the residents are also going through difficult financial times. According to this line of thought by the Town it is better to ask residents to come up with the funds than to find a mere $2,100 to do them all.

By the way - the Town did find a way to carve out a pile of money to hire Mrs. Galloway as a "Town Spokeswoman", a new job cobbled together to provide a spokesperson not needed in the Town staff ranks in the past. After "finding" those funds, the Town hired the person away from neighboring Morrisville where she had been in that role for some time but wanted to move to Apex and have a job here. 

If the Town Council can propose and approve giving Town employees a $1,000 raise in this year's budget, why can't they find a mere $2,100 to replace worn flags and avoid all this? Had the Town given merit raises based on performance that would have only cost the Town taxpayers the amount of the raises for one year. By making these actual raises in salary the cost will be born by residents for years to come. Those raises cost the taxpayers cost Apex $372,373 per year to fund the flat raise, which is part of the $68.7 million 2012 proposed budget. Read about the raises for all employees...

This brings to mind other mind-boggling items brought to you by the Town Council and Staff. One of these is the new pedestrian bridge directly behind the Town Campus...

The 2009 Town Easter Egg Hunt, or rather the lack of one. A couple of years back the Town decided to cancel the annual Easter egg hunt for town children on the grounds of the Town Campus. That decision fell about as flat as Humpty Dumpty did and gave the Town a black eye for some time. The Town management said that the Town had a $750,000 budget shortfall that year and could not provide an egg hunt for the children. The Town Manager's response was to "tell the children that the Town was not using the money for something else, but that the Easter Bunny just could not afford the flight down that year". Yeah, right...

How about the infamous "bridge to nowhere" sitting behind the new Town Campus building? The Town and CSX Railroad teamed up just a few years ago and built a state of the art magnificent $220,000 pedestrian crossing intended to let folks walk to and from the Town Campus to get to downtown activities. To date the bridge still ends beside the old CSX junk parts and trash dump beside the tracks within a hundred yards of the Town Campus and two hundred yards from the Apex Farmers Market that sells fresh food products to consumers. No one seems to care that this bridge ends at the dump, does not connect with a walkway to the Town Campus and parking areas and runs right into a rat infested dumping spot for the railroad.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Open mike reveals a lot about Stam

Stam is all smiles as he takes
away rights from NC citizens
A critical comment about Governor Perdue by Paul Stam reveals a lot about his character and whether he should represent Apex and NC. While in a closed budget meeting, but with an open microphone, Stam commented and others in the Legislature and Press heard about his view of the Governor after she issued an executive order to restore Federally based unemployment benefits to some 37,000 citizens...

His comment was reflected in a News and Observer story about the gaffe - "Either way, she's incompetent," he said. "We really need to crack on her for this. This is probably one of the worst things she's done."
He made this comment while on the job representing citizens of this area on June 3, 2011. He was in a Republican caucus discussing how to proceed with a budget the Republicans are forcing onto the citizens of NC that will severely damage the education process in the state.

Perhaps it is time to remove him from office since he clearly has no respect for others in the political process and is known to make condescending comments about state citizens. Read more...

This is not the first time Stam has been observed trashing politicians he serves with to further his narrow agenda. His methods often include making extreme comments about those he disagrees with to create maximum conflict in the press.

Stam also recently made an insulting comment about the State's new American Idol winner. When Scotty Macreery was  in the final stages of the Idol competition, Stam made a derogatory statement to a representative that had commented about Scotty's outstanding performance. Stam asked "is he a Terrier?" demonstrating how out of touch he is with the community he is supposed to be representing.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Spring arrives at Apex Town Campus

Spring arrived in April, 2011, at the Apex Town Campus. This extended wall of flowers wraps around a fenced area on the East side of the campus next to North Mason Street.
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Monday, March 7, 2011

A Window on River Street

Shopping on River Street
 Savannah, Georgia

February, 2011
Copyright Carolinabits 2013
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Sunday, January 23, 2011

Tired of CSX engines idling in Apex?

The annual CSX ritual of leaving diesel engines idling all night and day started again before Thanksgiving, 2010. CSX parks 3 or 4 engines and leaves them idling at the downtown Apex depot every day and night starting in late fall each year. The practice will continue well into the warm days of late spring. Even after working hours when the engines are not being used they are left running all night and all weekend with no one in attendance or at the depot.

It is interesting in this era of rising fuel costs and concerns about air pollution that CSX continues this practice with no regard to the effect on the surrounding community. One of the engines is left running 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and is not even used. It just sites there running, running and running.

Sit in one of the downtown restaurants or walk along the Salem Street sidewalks and you will quickly discover a loud rumbling that never goes away. And you will often smell the noxious odor of diesel fumes drifting through the air. Eventually you may realize that the rumbling never ends and there are no "quiet times" in the downtown community.

Take that view a few blocks away from the downtown area and you will discover that in any home east or west in a several block radius from the depot has the same constant rumbling to deal with. On many days and nights there is the same noxious odor of diesel fumes in the air surrounding the homes. Imagine having to live in this area and hearing this every day, every winter. Imagine the effect new homeowners moving into homes being built in the Villages of Apex and having to live with the constant background rumble of engines sitting nearby most of the year.

Town Manager Bruce Radford (Email the Apex Town Manager) and Town Council representatives (Email the Apex Town Council) have been asked many times to require CSX officials to turn off the idling engines when they are not being used. The usual response is that the noise level does not show up on the Town's noise level monitoring device (Mr. Radford actually asked the police to measure the noise level a year ago at the intersection of Center and Mason Streets) or that the Town has no control over what CSX does with it's engines. Mr. Radford also says he lived near a train track when growing up and the sound of trains does not bother him. Interesting that he does not live near the area where these engines are left running all night - he chose to live miles away from the sound.

Wasting fuel, polluting the air with diesel fumes and creating a steady engine roar all night and all weekend when the train engines are not in use makes CSX an obviously poor neighbor. The roar of the engines is constant at all hours of the night and is accompanied by a frequent loud hiss of air when a pressure valve releases compressed air every few minutes. The end result is never having quiet at night in residential neighborhoods in the Center-Mason-Hunter Street depot area and beyond. For a good demonstration of the noise problem, try standing two blocks or further away along the sidewalk on Mason Street late at night and you will be amazed at the constant roar of the diesel engines and the hiss of air being released...

If you would like to help eliminate the noise and air pollution, contact the Apex Town Manager (Email the Apex Town Manager) or your Town Council (Email the Apex Town Council) and ask them to put a stop to the noise and pollution. It's a simple matter of courtesy and duty to town residents to require CSX to be a good neighbor and turn the engines off at night and on the weekend. There is no technical reason for diesel engines to be left running all night and it's an obvious waste of energy during a time when the country is trying to reduce dependence on foreign oil.

It is interesting to note that when the Town Manager was asked to investigate what the the City of Raleigh did to implement an ordinance preventing the railroad from leaving engines running all night in the Logan Station area that he says he could not find anyone that knows anything about the ban. Kind of strange that neither Mr. Radford and his counterpart in Raleigh are unable to provide information on the ban put in place by Mayor Charles Meeker several years ago.
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Friday, December 24, 2010

NC Population surges ahead in 2010

Thinking its getting more crowded around here lately? According to the latest US Census numbers, North Carolina jumped substantially ahead in the number of residents and is among the "mega-states" in population. The State's population swelled by a whopping 18.5 percent since year 2000.

The NC population increased nearly 1.5 million people since 2000 to a total count of 9,535,483, the fifth most of any state. 
Read the entire report...

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Biggest home in town

So you want a big beach house?

Check out this one at North Carolina's Cherry Grove Beach. This new home is being built (summer 2010)  for the owner of Bollineau's in downtown Cherry Grove Beach. He owns the main grocery store, hardware store, gas station, souvenir shop an other businesses in town.

Interestingly, the home sits by the bay at the end of a street of all one-story small private residences. Here's guessing he is friends of all of them or they are his employees since the home doesn't fit anywhere in the entire nearby area.

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Monday, July 12, 2010

Town of Apex butchers historical tree

Town of Apex 1, resident 0. Game over.

The Town utilities department butchered one of the historical oak trees along Center Street on July 12, 2010. The tree has been part of the character the old Herbert Poe house in the so-called Historical District since the early 1900s.

Granted, some trimming is necessary to protect the Town's power grid, but butchering the tree would seem to be an extreme step to take. Especially since the Town long ago adopted the position to require owners of properties in the Historic District to preserve the original look of homes in order to protect and maintain the "small town character" in the older Town neighborhoods.

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Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Hotter than hot in Apex NC

It's hotter than hot in Apex NC !!!

And this is in the shade!

102 Degrees and counting...

July 7, 2010, 3:30 PM

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Can a bag of water keep flies away?

Ever see bags of water hanging in or near a restaurant or someone's doorway?

The theory is that these will keep flies away from the area where they are hanging. Myth or truth, the concept sounds interesting and useful. One of the reasons suggested is that light refraction confuses flies and causes them to leave the area. Read more about the concept on "HowStuffWorks"...

What do you think? Leave a comment to share your results if you have tried it...

Read the article about whether bags of water can keep flies away...

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Apex Town Council supports no-busing plan for Wake County

The Apex Town Council voted May 3rd to support the Wake County plan to not use busing for diversity. Mayor Keith Weatherly frequently places the Town Council at the center of controversial issues and now says the Wake County Board previously put too much emphasis on busing to diversify schools. He cites the Town Council has been very outspoken in the past against the busing policy and wants to encourage the County to put "educational emphasis on minority and economically disadvantaged students".

The Mayor says the previous school board had focused on having "an arbitrary, economic and racial mix in all of our schools when education should be the primary focus."

Read the full article...

Apex Passes Resolution In Support Of School Board

May. 4, 2010 11:14 pm
APEX, N.C. - Apex City Council members unanimously passed a resolution supporting the Wake County School Board's Community Schools program.
The mayor said the council was very vocal in the past against the county's busing policy.
Council members said they support diversity in schools but believe the focus of the board should be on something else.
"We are encouraging, educational emphasis on minority and economically disadvantaged students, which we've seen low graduation rates on other things that had not been successful," Mayor Keith Weatherly said. "We feel that that's been the most important emphasis of the previous board of education; to have an arbitrary, economic and racial mix in all of our schools when education should be the primary focus."
Other communities, including Raleigh, have passed resolutions denouncing the School Board's actions.

Monday, April 26, 2010

CSX strikes again locking up and parking a train across several Apex crossings

A CSX crew locked up their train engine and walked off the job leaving a line of train cars blocking three street crossings in the heart of Apex at 4:00 AM Friday April 23rd until around 9:00 AM in the morning. Never mind that this left the neighborhoods blocked with residents not aware they could not cross the tracks at these streets. Never mind that should anyone need emergency help that police or EMS personnel did not know they could not cross at these streets if they got an emergency call.

What's missing from this report is that this is not the first time CSX has done this in Apex. From time to time a train is left parked near the same crossings blocking traffic in the same manner. It is a simple , but necessary, courtesy to the community for the train to be moved a few feet to leave the Chatham Street crossing unblocked. They could also have pushed the train all the way past the Tingen Road crossing and left it parked until a new crew could have been brought on scene.

CSX crews routinely leave engines parked at the Center Street train depot with engines idling all night and all weekend causing a constant engine noise problem and venting diesel fumes into the neighborhoods with no concern to the health and welfare of the neighbors of the entire downtown area.

Leaving crossings blocked for a few minutes during busy traffic times is largely an inconvenience. But leaving a train parked and blocking three traffic crossings with no crew to move the train could easily lead to a crisis for a local resident needing police or EMS help while the crossings are blocked. The extra time needed to figure out the train is not going to move and then find an alternate route could make or break a life or death situation...
News & Observer
April 23, 2010
Staff Report

Train blocking 3 intersections removed

A train that was abandoned by its crew and left sitting on the railroad tracks where it blocked three roads in downtown Apex for several hours Friday morning was removed about 9 a.m. police said.

The train was left parked on the tracks about 4 a.m., and when police contacted CSX railroad officials, they were told the members of the crew had reached their limit of work hours, stopped the train, locked it up and left, Sgt. Greg Rhodes said.

A spokesman for the police department said that apparently CSX sent out another crew to move the train.

The train blocked Tingen Road, Moore Street and Chatham Street, police said. Rhodes said the three blocked intersections did not cause any traffic problems. Drivers figured out alternate routes on their own, he said. Read original report...

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Not your Father's AT&T

This is not the quality work of your Father's AT&T. Since the company was split up years ago and recently merged with another company, the traditions of providing good service and doing quality installations that blend with the surroundings have long been abandoned.

Take a look around and you will see sloppy installations (like the one here near the CSX rail depot in downtown Apex) and signs of lack of concern for the environment and community. Another widespread insult to the environment can be seen in the form of gaudy orange and white marker poles along roads everywhere that are placed in theory to prevent digging up underground cables and fiber circuits.

So much for being a good community citizen!
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Sunday, March 28, 2010

Sign of the Times

Sign of the Times 2010

When folks get laid off some look for any means available to produce income until things get better. Sign outside of Doctor's Office in Cary, NC.
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Monday, February 15, 2010

Apex officials eliminate coverage of elective abortions and regulate employees morals

The Apex Town Council recently took on the hot topic of regulating morality of women town employees and family members when Mayor Keith Weatherly quietly introduced an unadvertised item at the beginning of the January 19, 2010, Council meeting. The Mayor's fast tracked item was intended to eliminate coverage for elective abortions for employees and family members from Town provided health insurance. By slipping the item into the agenda, the Mayor virtually insured (no pun intended) the change would pass through the Council approval process without allowing community input on the change. This raises the question as to whether Mr. Weatherly should be allowed to continue as the Town's Mayor.

The Mayor introduced the change into the Council approval process after learning about past cases of elective abortions from his Cary friend Kent Misegades, also a director at the new Thales Academy and a founder of the controversial Cary Watchmen. Mayor Weatherly in effect decided it was appropriate for the Council to regulate employee morality and introduced the proposal to remove coverage from the Town provided insurance package that historically allowed women employees to have an elective abortion when needed. It was also done in a manner to not allow input from Town residents. Introducing the change in this manner the Mayor was able to fast track getting the change quietly added to the agenda with other items to pass on the night it was introduced. This avoided the accepted practice of advertising topics being considered by Town Council to area residents in advance of the voting process.

This controversial move has set off a storm of discussion in the surrounding area and has now led to other regional municipal groups debating insurance coverage of elective abortions and morality based issues. No other local municipalities deny similar coverage for employees to date. According to a recent News and Observer article on the Apex issue, there have only been three cases of Apex Town employees choosing to have an elective abortion. No information has been provided as to whether the choice of abortion made a difference to the health or well-being of the employees.

As noted in the February 6th, 2010, News and Observer article, "Apex's health insurance policy has for years afforded employees the benefit of having the procedure covered at a minimal out-of-pocket expense. During the past six years, three employees have claimed the benefit, town manager Bruce Radford said."

The proposal was quietly slipped into the meeting agenda as noted in the Council's minutes on the Town website...
Apex Town Council Meeting Minutes of January 19, 2010
Mayor Weatherly presented the Regular Meeting Agenda to be set prior to taking action; amendments: 1) Mayor Weatherly asked to discuss town employee health plan...
One of the Councilmen suggested putting the topic under the regular agenda items and the proposal was inserted in the regular agenda items section. When the topic later came up Mayor Weatherly presented the idea of removing elective abortions from the Town employee insurance plan as follows...
Presenter: Mayor Keith Weatherly
New Business # 04 – Add-on: Employee Health Plan
Mayor Weatherly had recently found Town of Apex employee health plan covered “elective abortions”, and understood it standard in most contracts, however, asked Council consider removing “elective abortions” from employee health plan, and not when it relates to health related issues. Human Resources Director Green stated this was correct; noted codes would indicate when abortion would be health related. Town is self funded, with Blue Cross and Blue Shield as administrator over the insurance coverage; BCBS advised the revision could be made to the Town’s contract to state the insurance coverage will no longer fund elective abortions and can have the coverage revision by February 1, 2010. With a brief discussion the following action was taken.
Action: Council Member Schulze made the motion to approve the omission of elective abortions from the town employee health plan. Council Member Gossage made the second to the motion. Motion carried unanimously.
End of New Business # 04
Read the January 19, 2010 Town Council Minutes. News and Observer February 6, 2010, report on the Apex issue from the News and Observer can be read here.

What's your view? Should the Town of Apex be in the business of excluding elective abortions and regulating decisions on health care for the women employees or family members covered by Town health insurance? Is this discriminatory toward women employees? Leave a comment to voice your decision.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

OK... who wants a Lego set?

Lots of folks lined up for Lego's Christmas 2009.
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Monday, February 1, 2010

Looking toward warmer days

The cold days of winter in North Carolina give us all reason to look forward to the warmer days of spring and summer.

This view of a beach home along the coast at Emerald Isle gives us reason to think the cold will soon go away and we will be able to get out and enjoy the fresh air and sunshine before long.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Avalon Pier, Kill Devil Hills, NC

It's cold in Apex with all the snow and sleet but check out the Avalon Pier on January 30th at Kill Devil Hills, NC. Wind, rain, sleet, snow, ice...

Maybe it's a good day to be around home after all!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Transparency - A step in the right direction by the Town of Apex

Check out the new "Transparency" link on the home page of the Apex town website. In response to a recent report slamming the town (Grade = "D") for not being open with information, the Town has made an attempt to give folks a page listing all sorts of information. Unfortunately they called it "Transparency" so folks will not have a clue about what the link provides (they could have called it "Information and Documents" or something meaningful). Too bad the Town Staff and IT department doesn't work with a cross-section of local residents on what is needed or how it should be shown to be useful!

Mayor Weatherly and the Town Staff were dragging their feet and initially resisted providing some information (salaries and other sensitive information) online but have at least now provided a link to some of the information residents should have easy access to. Read a comment on how communities in NC have been reacting to an initiative the John Locke Foundation launched in 2009 at, a website connecting North Carolina citizens with information available online from state agencies, school systems, and municipalities. The website is now routinely used by citizens and the media to get information previously difficult to access.

Read the John Locke Foundation findings on transparency of information in Apex and note how many areas were not available!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Town of Apex - the Big Dig...

So... how many Town of Apex employees does it take to dig one 2 foot wide hole?

In this case it took six employees over half a day to dig a small hole in a yard on Tunstall Street (near Olive Street) on the morning of Tuesday, January 19th, 2010. Look closely and you will see only one person digging and five standing around talking (Click on the photo to see a larger version).

There were also five Town trucks parked in a line in the street in front of this house during the Big Dig.
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Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Smokey's BBQ Shack

Yet another hidden BBQ spot in the Apex area...

Smokey's BBQ Shack is tucked away on the side of the road out in Morrisville at 10800 Chapel Hill Road (Highway 54). Take a ride out Davis Drive, turn right onto Morrisville Parkway, then turn back to the left onto Highway 54 in Morrisville. Drive about three miles and look for a small diner-like shack on the right.

The BBQ is great and both chicken and pork are available. You can also get ribs, sliced brisket and wings! There are lots of fixin's to choose from - mixed greens, fried okra, green beans, potato salad, mac-n-cheese, slaw, baked beans and the ever present hush puppies to go with the meal. You can also get Brunswick stew.

Prices are reasonable and two can dine for less than $20 - dine in or take out.

Hours are from 11 AM - 2 PM Monday-Wednesday, 11 AM 7:30 PM Thursday-Friday and 11 AM - 7 PM on Saturday. Call ahead (919-469-1724) if you want to place a large order or to be sure they are open before making the drive. When they run out of BBQ they close up and go home!
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