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Top News Stories March 7 - 21, 2012
1. Assessor to Review Data

Mecklenburg County Assessor Garrett Alexander met with a group of officials and homeowners in Cornelius on Friday regarding the 2011 revaluation. He has agreed to review the data and to determine if any adjustments are warranted. The review does not mean that adjustments are warranted. There is no indication at this time that this review will postpone the appeals process. Some property owners in Cornelius and others along Lake Norman have voiced concerns about the significant increases in their revalued property. Read the email Alexander sent to officials and his staff on Monday, March 5.

2. Mecklenburg County Waives Yard Waste, Demolition Disposal Fees in Tornado Aftermath

To help residents in the tornado-stricken Reedy Creek area of northeast Charlotte, Mecklenburg County has waived the yard waste and demolition fees at nearby Hickory Grove Recycling Center through March 17, 2012. Regular fees are $8 per load of yard waste, and $22 per load of construction and demolition waste, which includes wood waste (framing timbers, pallets, crates, spools, sheathing, treated lumber/decking), inert material (concrete, brick, asphalt pavement, mortar, sheet rock, rock, gravel), plastic (pipe, buckets, wrap), and other (shingles, fiberglass bath fixtures, tile, ceramic, carpet, padding). These fees will be waived through March 17, 2012 only for Mecklenburg County residents driving private vehicles to the Hickory Grove recycling center; businesses will be required to pay regular fees. Identification may be checkedto verify residency. Mixed loads will not be accepted. Yard waste, construction/demolition debris, and bulky trash must be separated prior to coming to the facility.

3. National Flood Safety Week is March 12 - 16

This year’s flood safety advice from local experts is Build an “ARK.” It may not be what you think. Find out what Build an “ARK” means: Monday, March 12 at 10 a.m.
Little Sugar Creek floodplain at 3340 Westfield Road, Charlotte 28209
(behind Park Road Shopping Center).

4. Dodge Out Tobacco Use Dodge Ball Tournament

Students at Independence High School plan to hold a Dodge Out Tobacco Use dodge ball tournament in support of the U.S. Surgeon General’s Report of Preventing Tobacco Use Among Youth and Young Adults. The tournament is Thursday. March 8, at 2:30 p.m. This group of youth at Independence High School is part of the Mecklenburg County Health Department TRU (Tobacco, Reality, Unfiltered) initiative to use peer groups to keep prevent young people from using tobacco products. The TRU initiative, which has successfully reduced teen smoking in North Carolina to historic lows, may disappear after June, 2012. Since 2003, funding for the award-winning program and media campaign has been provided by North Carolina’s portion of the tobacco Master Settlement Agreement, as approved by the N.C. General Assembly.

5. Enter Your Dog in the 2012 Top Dog Photo Contest

Sign-up your dog for this year’s Top Dog​ Photo Contest, part of the 2012 Pedigree® Bark in the Park Dog Festival presented by Food Lion on Saturday, April 28. Bark in the Park will be at Rural Hill, 4431 Neck Rd. Huntersville, NC. This festival is a signature event of Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation Department to promote dog parks.
The entry period this year runs March 5- March 23. Judges will select three finalist photos for cleverness, originality and appearance. Finalists will be posted on the Bark in the Park web page on for online voting, April 2- April 16, for Top Dog. The winner will be announced April 23 on the website. The Top Dog and owner will receive a professional portrait by Tianna Fisher and serve as grand marshals of the Pooch Parade at Bark in the Park.

6. Time to 'Get Your Green on' for the Great American Cleanup

Keep Mecklenburg Beautiful Inc. reminds you that it’s time for Keep America Beautiful's Great American Cleanup. The event takes place annually from March 1 through May 31, involving an estimated 3.8 million volunteers and attendees. Hardworking volunteers donated more than 5.2 million hours in 2011 to clean, beautify and improve more than 16,500 communities during more than 30,000 events in all 50 states and beyond. Activities included beautifying parks and recreation areas, cleaning seashores and waterways, handling recycling collections, picking up litter, planting trees and flowers, and conducting educational programs and litter-free events.

7. Mecklenburg County Child Support Enforcement's Fatherhood Initiative Program

Mecklenburg County Child Support Enforcement invites the media to an information session for its Fatherhood initiative program on Thursday, March 15 from 5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m., at the CSE office, 5800 Executive Center Dr. Suite 200 Charlotte, NC. A full agenda will be distributed later this week. For more information, call 704-432-9300.

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