-May 20, 2013-
3:00 -- The head of the IRS's labor union met with President Obama the day before the IRS launched its targeted program of Tea Party groups. Surely, it's just a coincidence.
4:00 -- Is Obama a flake? Here's an analysis that supports the conclusion that he is.
5:00 -- Shariah law in North Carolina - is it needed or are Republican lawmakers just scaremongering?
-May 21, 2013-
3:00 -- The Asheville TEA Party protests outisde the local IRS offices. Plus, french fries & curly fries.
4:00 -- French fries, curly fries, drive-ins, and radio frequency waves. Plus, if you had to pick a species of infestation, what would it be?
5:00 -- Pete's battles flies in his apartment. Plus, trivia!
-May 22, 2013-
4:00 -- The folks from Mountain Xpress drop by to chat about the latest edition on news stands today.
-May 23, 2013-
-May 24, 2013-
I came across this video today, where two dudes undergo a simulation of the pain women experience during childbirth.
I think there is one important factor that is not included in the simulation: the baby. After these guys go through the experiment there is literally no reward. I think that makes a difference in a person's ability to withstand pain.
That being said... here we go. Can the men hack it?
Since WLOS began its series this week on school safety issues in Buncombe County Schools, a number of questions have come up about how the schools system permits work projects.
Monday, WLOS reporter Mike Mason had a story about how the BCS system was not obtaining required permits for routine work.
The Director of Permits and Inspections for Buncombe County, Matt Stone, said his initial review of documents brought to him by WLOS "shows permits were required for work done by school electricians but those permits were not pulled with his office."
Stone said he'll have to investigate them all.
(See the WLOS report below)
In a statement released by BCS on its website, officials note:
With so much work to be done at 42 schools across our 660-square mile county, and licensed professionals on staff, the school system has a “blanket permit” allowed by the Buncombe County Inspections Department, designed to cover minor repair work, maintenance work, and part replacement, and is only applicable to BCS Maintenance Department personnel. The blanket permit does not cover major projects, which are most often handled by an outside contractor—in those cases, the contractor is responsible for obtaining any necessary permits.
I can understand why such a "blanket permit" process would be efficient for the district. It would take a lot of time to pull every permit properly and it would cost a lot of money. I'm told the blanket permit applies to jobs under $5,000.
But School Board Member Lisa Baldwin called in to the show Tuesday and said a whistleblower told her that the blanket permit was only put in place by the County in March 2012 - after a complaint was made about the lack of permitting. That it was done to avoid any further investigation into the matter.
This all raises some troubling questions.
If the County issued the blanket permit to BCS, why would Stone not mention this when asked about the lack of permits? Why not offer that explanation to WLOS? Instead, Stone said he'd be opening investigations.
And if he did, in fact, mention this blanket permit, why would it not be included in the WLOS story?
Also, what other organizations have a blanket permit? Is it just the school district, or does the City of Asheville enjoy a similar exemption? Any other governments? Do any private businesses have this same benefit?
Is there any oversight to ensure the blanket permit is not being abused? For example, large projects could be divided into smaller parts in order to keep the total work under the $5,000 limit.
Part 3 is tonight at 6:00 pm.
Here is Part 1
Part 2 can be found here.