Harold’s Blog: Local Lab, Dreamfest and More

Cary, NC – This week was an unusually slow week in the mayor’s office.

Monday – Planning for the Week

Monday I met with the town manager to go over several items. First we had a quick debrief on the town’s response to the snow/ice storm. Based on the information gathered Cary did very well and much better than our neighboring municipalities. Other topics discussed included the council/staff working retreat, a downtown business, the website redesign, develop update of the state property, redevelopment of the mall property, the town manager’s meeting with SAS, and my upcoming State of Cary address. Our meeting concluded after about an hour and fifteen minutes.

Tuesday – Lab Tour

Tuesday I toured the CiVentiChem facility on Sheldon Drive. This is a pharma chemical company that does lab work. They describe themselves as a global provider of contract research, development, and manufacturing services with focus on providing simple solutions to complex chemistry. In layman’s terms they do chemical work for new drugs that may or may not be introduced in the market. My understanding is that all drugs have an active chemical ingredient in addition to additives for preserving and stabilizing. CiVentiChem does their chemical lab work on the active ingredient portion and produces a report as well as the solid form of that active ingredient. This is then passed along to the companies that make the drug. CiVentiChem employs close to twenty people with PhD’s in Chemistry. Their equipment and facilities are worth millions of dollars. I was able to tour the various labs and actually see chemists at work. I spent about half an hour touring. I wish them great success and am glad they are in Cary.

Saturday – Dreamfest

Saturday I had the honor of providing welcome remarks at the 2017 Dreamfest Diversity Summit. Here is an excerpt from the remarks I made:

“I’m Cary Mayor Harold Weinbrecht, and I’m honored to join you on behalf of our Town Council and the 157,000 people who call Cary home. Welcome to Dreamfest! This annual, weekend-long event celebrates the life, work and mission of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. through a wide range of programs like today’s Diversity Summit.

We’ve held Dreamfest annually in Cary since 1999, and I’m proud of the opportunity to both highlight and reflect on the values Dr. King taught us through his example. The values of courage, truth, unconditional love, forgiveness and non-violence resonate with us all, regardless of our gender, race or ethnicity, Like King, we at the Town of Cary value the quality of life of our citizens, and we will continue to promote activities that encourage diversity in our community. …”

The Dreamfest Summit had two panel discussions. The first was with Pastors and the second was with educators. We are so blessed to have such a diverse community and people willing to discuss the hard issues.

Emails From Staff

Emails this week included the following announcement:

“North Carolina Football Club announced today it has entered into an agreement to acquire the rights to the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) 2016 Champion Western New York Flash. The club will be renamed North Carolina Courage (also referred to as NC Courage) and will play at WakeMed Soccer Park in the 2017 NWSL season. …”

We are so very proud to have a professional women’s team in Cary. We look forward to supporting them.

Town Manager’s Report

Email from the town manager’s report included:

Interbasin Transfer (IBT) Allocation Update

The EMC Water Allocation Committee met on January 11 and DEQ staff presented the Jordan Lake Allocation recommendations as an informational item. There was no discussion after the presentation about its content as the Committee heard a similar presentation last year. The Committee discussed meeting prior to recommending it to the Full Commission at its March 9 meeting. Town staff and the Jordan Lake Partners will be monitoring the situation closely and continuing to discuss any appropriate actions ahead of the March EMC meeting.

FFY18 LAPP Projects

In August 2016, the NC Capital Area MPO’s Executive Board (CAMPO) opened a call for projects to identify and program available FFY 2018 Locally Administered Projects Program (LAPP) funds. The call for projects resulted in submission of 25 eligible projects for consideration. Projects were reviewed for funding eligibility and scored based on the adopted LAPP prioritization criteria by CAMPO staff. The draft FFY 2018 LAPP Investment Program will be released for public review and comment from January 16-February 15, 2017 and CAMPO anticipates scheduling a public hearing at its February 15, 2017 Executive Board meeting. Three Town of Cary projects are proposed to be funded: Reedy Creek Road Improvements, Black Creek Greenway – Phase I & V, and GoCary Bus Stop Improvements.

Wake Manager’s Meeting

At this week’s meeting of the Wake managers, Wake County share information on a few new initiatives. They are beginning work on a 20-year Affordable Housing Plan for the county. A 32-member steering committee is tasked with providing guidance, contributing input and engaging the public. The committee includes residents, stakeholders and subject matter experts. One of your colleagues, Lori Bush, was recruited by Wake County to participate on the committee.

Additionally, Wake County, in collaboration with Raleigh, is in the beginning stages of creating the Oak City Outreach Multi-Service Center. This will be a “one-stop shop” intake, assessment and resource center for homeless and housing-fragile individuals.

Finally, we received a legislative preview from the League. As a reminder, your annual legislative dinner is scheduled for January 31. This will provide the first collective opportunity to engage our local legislators on issues of importance to Cary.

Transit Update

The work of the Transit Planning Advisory Committee continues to ramp up to ensure we are well positioned to begin work in the upcoming budget year. A workshop will be held before the next CAMPO meeting on January 18 at 3 p.m. You will see the Wake County Vehicle Registration Tax Interlocal Agreement at the upcoming Council meeting. This will assign the vehicle registration taxes to the transit authority. Following that, the Joint Agency Agreement (JAA) will be coming to all Wake municipalities. This is a high-level agreement that defines how the transit providers, GoTriangle and municipalities will work together to implement the Wake Transit Plan.

Emails From Citizens

Emails from citizens included:

  • A request to help with a landlord.
  • Multiple kudos for Cary’s snow removal effort.
  • A concern about a proposed development on Trimble Drive.

Next week’s activities include a meeting of the Wake County Mayors, a meeting of the Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization’s Executive Board (CAMPO), and the KidDilly expo.

Get In Touch

Well, that is all for this week. My next post will be on Sunday, January 22nd.  Although I have Facebook and Twitter accounts those are not the best means of communications with me. Please send all Town of Cary questions or comments to Harold.Weinbrecht@townofcary.org and email personal comments to augustanat@mindspring.com.


From the blog of Cary Mayor Harold Weinbrecht. Photo by Hal Goodtree.