Triangle Politics A weekly look at the local political scene

Departing Wake school board members hear kind words

November 8, 2013 

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John Tedesco

TRAVIS LONG — tlong@newsobserver.com Buy Photo

Wake County school board member Deborah Prickett and John Tedesco have had some heated moments with their board colleagues over the past four years, but that was largely put aside at their final meeting this week.

Both outgoing board members were given plaques thanking them for their service since 2009. Prickett and Tedesco were part of a Republican board majority that clashed with their Democratic colleagues, who now are in charge, over issues such as student assignment and who should be superintendent.

“I will certainly say it’s been a ride, a roller coaster ride to say the least,” school board Chairman Keith Sutton said. “But I think we all have learned a lot. We have grown a lot, and I know that we have certainly done some good things for the students and families here in the Wake County Public School System.”

Like Sutton, board member Kevin Hill had fought and sometimes agreed with Prickett and Tedesco on issues over the past four years.

“Regardless of when we’ve agreed or disagreed, we’ve all tried to serve the people of Wake County, and so I appreciate the time and dedication you’ve put into your positions,” Hill said.

Every board member except Susan Evans, who has had multiple clashes with Prickett, thanked them at the meeting for their service.

Stagner gets spot on watershed panel

Raleigh City Councilman Randy Stagner will be sticking around in an appointed role after his term ends Dec. 2.

Stagner is in his last month in office after being defeated by political newcomer Wayne Maiorano in October’s election. But on Tuesday, Mayor Nancy McFarlane appointed him to a brand-new committee she is forming for watershed protection efforts.

Stagner will join former Mayor Charles Meeker and several others on the watershed protection advisory task force. The group is charged with a six-month review of Raleigh’s partnership with the Conservation Trust for North Carolina, which makes land purchases that protect the city’s water supply.

“We really have to be more strategic about how we spend this money,” McFarlane said.

As a councilman, Stagner has served as the city’s representative to the Upper Neuse River Basin Association, giving him “a great deal of knowledge” for the new effort, the mayor said.

Search begins for Orange County manager

Orange County residents will get a say in what the county should look for in a new manager at two public meetings later this month.

The county hired Springsted Inc. consultants to help find a replacement for former County Manager Frank Clifton, who retired in September.

The consultants will meet twice with residents to provide information about the county manager’s responsibilities and why finding the right person is important. The meetings also will give residents a voice in the eventual decision.

The meetings will take place Nov. 20 at the Southern Human Services Center, 2501 Homestead Road in Chapel Hill, and Nov. 26 at the Orange County Library, 137 W. Margaret Lane in Hillsborough. Both meetings will run from 7 to 8:30 p.m.

More information is available from John Anzivino, Springsted’s senior vice president, at 804-726-9750.

Political events

• Raleigh Mayor Nancy McFarlane will moderate a panel discussion Wednesday on the role of cities in leading the state’s economic recovery and growth. The event, from noon to 1:30 p.m. at the Marriott City Center in downtown Raleigh, is sponsored by the N.C. Metropolitan Mayors Coalition and will include mayors and city managers from around the state, as well as James Sauls, Raleigh’s new economic development director, PNC Bank economist Mekael Teshome and O’Hara Macken, executive vice president of Ipreo, a market intelligence and technology company that recently opened a new office in downtown Raleigh.

Compiled by T. Keung Hui, Colin Campbell and Tammy Grubb.

Got a tip, item or coming event? Fax Triangle Politics at 919-829-4529, or send e-mail to metroeds@newsobserver.com. Send items by noon Thursday.

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