Charlotte Observer

Charlotte Observer
11:39 am
Wed October 30, 2013

Forum Draws Differences Among At-Large Candidates

Amanda Raymond, executive director for the League of Women Voters Debate, instructs at-large candidates on how the forum will be run.
Credit T. Ortega Gaines / Charlotte Observer

  A forum featuring eight Charlotte City Council candidates Tuesday found little support for a streetcar, grudging support for business incentives and lingering resentment over the state’s effort to transfer control of the airport.

Eight contenders for four at-large seats met for a forum at WTVI sponsored by the League of Women Voters. Taking part were four Democrats, a Libertarian and three of four Republicans. Republican Vanessa Faura did not attend.

Candidates divided over the streetcar, which advocates see as an east-west connector.

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Charlotte Observer
9:53 am
Mon October 28, 2013

Elevation Church Pastor Responds To His Critics

Steven Furtick

Elevation Church Pastor Steven Furtick told his congregation Sunday that he was sorry for any uncomfortable conversations they may have been forced to have about his controversial new Waxhaw home.

But Furtick didn’t apologize for the 16,000-square-foot home, which drew national media attention last week because of its size and cost. Instead, he described it as a gift from God.

Furtick also emphasized Sunday that he is committed to making worshipers proud of their church. And he added that the media should not be viewed as the enemy.

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Charlotte Observer
10:15 am
Fri October 25, 2013

Belmont Standoff Ends Without Injury, SWAT Team Takes Gunman Into Custody

Belmont police have arrested a 46-year-old man after an attempted robbery turned standoff at the CVS in the 6700 block of Wilkinson Boulevard.
Credit T. Ortega Gaines / Charlotte Observer

BELMONT The standoff between law enforcement and a gunman at a Belmont CVS has ended without injury and all lanes of Wilkinson Boulevard have been reopened.

Edward Scott Russ, 46, of the Gastonia area, was taken into custody without incident shortly after 7 a.m., according to Police Chief Charlie Franklin.

Specific charges are still pending, but Franklin said Russ does have a prior criminal record.

Law enforcement agencies from Gaston and Charlotte-Mecklenburg were on the scene in Belmont Friday morning “and came together as one,” Franklin said.

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Charlotte Observer
11:36 am
Wed October 23, 2013

Elevation Pastor Building Big Home In Waxhaw

Construction of the Rev. Steven Furtick's home is underway in Waxhaw. Furtick is the founder and lead pastor of Elevation Church based in Charlotte.
Credit Davie Hinshaw / Charlotte Observer

Pastor Steven Furtick, who has propelled Elevation Church into one of the fastest growing congregations in America, is building a 16,000 square foot gated estate on a large wooded lot in Waxhaw.

Tax value on the 19-acre property is $1.6 million, though Chunks Corbett, Elevation’s chief financial officer, pointed out that Furtick paid $325,000 for it – a figure confirmed by Union County tax records.

Corbett also said the 16,000 square foot figure was misleading – 8,400 square feet of the house will be heated; the rest will be basement, attic, garage and porch space.

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Charlotte Observer
10:32 am
Wed October 16, 2013

Grier's Morning: National TV, Meeting With Stallone

Nash Grier, a 15-year-old Davidson Day School student, made an appearance Wednesday morning on ABC's "Good Morning America."
Credit Robert Lahser / Charlotte Observer

  By 9 a.m. Wednesday, Nash Grier had appeared on national television, made more Vine videos on the streets of New York City, reached 1.5 million followers and met Sylvester Stallone.

Not a bad start to the day for the video-producing sensation who also happens to be a sophomore at Davidson Day School.

Nash, 15, appeared shortly after 8:30 a.m. on ABC’s “Good Morning America.” The show’s Josh Elliott interviewed the teen about his growing fame as a producer of the 6-second Vine videos that are part of YouTube.

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Charlotte Observer
9:51 am
Thu October 10, 2013

Charlotte Foreclosure Activity Drops 46% In September

Charlotte-area foreclosure activity dropped 46 percent in September from a year ago, for a decline larger than the national rate, a report released Thursday shows.

According to Irvine, Calif.-based RealtyTrac, default notices, auctions and bank repossessions were reported on 708 properties in the metropolitan area, a 28 percent decrease from August. Nationally, foreclosure filings were reported on 131,232 properties, down 27 percent from a year ago but up 2 percent from August.

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Charlotte Observer
11:55 am
Wed September 25, 2013

NC Returns EPA Grant For Fracking Study

North Carolina’s environment agency has taken the unusual step of returning a federal grant to study streams and wetlands that could be harmed by hydraulic fracturing for natural gas.

The N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources had itself recommended last year that baseline water-quality data be collected where drilling might occur. The information would help document any problems linked to drilling.

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Charlotte Observer
2:19 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

GOP Senate Candidates Push Defunding Of Health Care Law

Graphic shows examples of what government services would stop if Congress is unable to compromise over a budget and the government must shut down; with icons.
Credit Judy Treible, Melina Yinglin - MCT

North Carolina’s Republican U.S. Senate candidates are taking a hard line on federal budget negotiations – a position that puts them at odds with the state’s lone GOP senator, Richard Burr.

Four Republican candidates said Monday they support efforts to defund the federal health care act, apparently even if those efforts lead to a government shutdown.

Their comments came the same day state Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger announced he won’t join those running for the U.S. Senate seat held by Democrat Kay Hagan.

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Charlotte Observer
2:14 pm
Mon September 9, 2013

'Homeland' House Sold In Charlotte

Sorry, “ Homeland” fans: the Charlotte house where Sgt. Nicholas Brody and his family live has already been sold.

Keller Williams agent Mike Anderson listed the house for sale in the Mountainbrook neighborhood with an asking price of $394,000. The four bedroom, two-and-a-half bathroom home has been the scene of domestic drama for the Brody family for the first two seasons of Homeland.

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Charlotte Observer
2:12 pm
Tue August 20, 2013

Adoptive Mom To Dr. Phil: Erica Parsons Is Alive

Erica Parsons’ adoptive mother says that Erica is alive, and the mystery of her disappearance could be cleared up with a phone call.

“Erica is not missing. Erica is with her grandmother,” a woman known as Nan, Casey Parsons said on the “Dr. Phil” show today. “This would all be over if Nan or Erica would just pick the phone up and call.”

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