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October 31, 2008
Business Investment Grant to US Airways
In April, the Board indicated its intent to approve a five-year Business Investment Grant to US Airways. US Airways had planned to invest up to $84 million over five years for seven new flight simulators to train pilots on new aircraft. The five-year grant had an estimated value of $2.4 million (combined City and County), and made eligible all simulators placed in Charlotte by US Airways before the end of 2012. Staff recommended that the grant begin after US Airways had placed three new simulators in Charlotte and hired 90 new jobs at an average wage of $150,000.
Due to a general slowdown in the industry, US Airways has informed us of a delay in the schedule for the purchase of new simulators. Two new simulators ordered last year are expected to be delivered to Charlotte in the coming weeks, but these will not result in new job growth.
Given this development, staff recommends that we defer formal consideration of the Business Investment Grant until US Airways moves forward with a plan to purchase additional flight simulators beyond the two that will be delivered shortly. Further consideration of a Business Investment Grant would be contingent upon new job creation.
Board members who would like additional information on this business investment grant should contact the County’s Economic Development Director John Allen, 704-432-2426.

“Operation Trick or Treat”
On Friday, October 31, 2008, the Mecklenburg County Sheriff’s Office, in partnership with Mecklenburg County’s federal, State, and local law enforcement agencies, will conduct “Operation Trick or Treat – whose door is your child knocking on?” This is the third year the Sheriff’s Office has coordinated verification of the 705 current sexual offenders known to reside in Mecklenburg County. The crimes committed by these offenders range from indecent liberties to first degree rape.
“Operation Trick or Treat” partners the Sheriff’s Office with the United States Marshals Service (the lead agency in the federal Adam Walsh Act enforcement), Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police, the NC Department of Community Corrections, and the six surrounding jurisdictions of Cornelius, Davidson, Huntersville, Matthews, Mint Hill, and Pineville. Participating agencies will take this opportunity to acquaint themselves with offenders within their jurisdictions and aid the Sheriff’s Office in the daunting task of verifying the 705 offender residences.
Anyone interested in gathering more information about sex offenders living in their neighborhood can go to the Sheriff’s website and follow the link to the NC State Sex Offender and Public Protection Registry. There, a person can find the offender’s registered address and a mapping program. If anyone has information about a sex offender’s whereabouts that does not match the information on the registry, they should contact the Sheriff’s Office at 704-336-8730.

Park & Recreation Bonds
In response to questions raised by Board members and Mecklenburg residents, staff has developed answers to Frequently Asked Questions about the $250 million park & recreation bond referendum on the November 4 ballot.
How will the bonds be sold?
The bonds will be sold over a seven-year period beginning in Fiscal Year 2010. The amount sold in any given year would be based on the status of the various projects as well as current spending patterns and other cash needs of the County.
The bonds will be sold over a seven-year period beginning in Fiscal Year 2010. The amount sold in any given year would be based on the status of the various projects as well as current spending patterns and other cash needs of the County.
Will my taxes go up?
Since the bonds are sold over several years, the County is able to stagger the debt service to minimize the impact on the tax rate. In addition, as bonds are sold, other bonds are retired, which provides capacity to take on new debt service. In addition, the County budget includes numerous expenditure lines and various revenue sources. When preparing the budget, all of these items are evaluated to determine whether a tax rate increase should be recommended. The County Finance Department has calculated the tax rate effect of the bonds is as follows:
FY11 - .27 cents
FY12 - .51 cents
FY13 - .84 cents
FY14 - 1.07 cents
FY15 - 1.34 cents
This means that in FY2015 it will take approximately 1.34 cents on the property tax rate to fund the debt service on these bonds. This does not necessarily mean that the tax rate will increase by 1.34 cents, because there are other factors that could increase or decrease this impact on the tax rate.
What types of projects will be funded by the bonds and are the projects included in the bond distributed countywide?
The $250 million will fund projects throughout Mecklenburg County. Projects include park land acquisition, renovation of existing facilities, greenway construction, conservation and stewardship, park capital planning and recreation facilities.
For more information on the park and recreation bonds, and the Parks Master Plan, go to
- Harry L. Jones, Sr., County Manager

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