SPARKS WILL FLY AT WAKE COMMISSIONERS MEETING OVER SALE OF PARKLAND: This proposal will likely be supported by board Chairwoman Jessica Holmes and Commissioner James West. They, along with Ford, were the three votes against purchasing the property last summer. Commissioners Matt Calabria and Sig Hutchinson, long-time supporters of the proposed park, will likely oppose selling it. Ford has called selling the property a correction to “an unprecedented and controversial action.” Calabria and Hutchinson have said buying the property $45,000 below market value was an excellent deal to help bring a park into an area where there are no county parks currently. That leaves both factions trying to win over new commissioners Vickie Adamson and Susan Evans. It’s just their second meeting as commissioners, and neither has said how she’ll vote. But last year’s contentious primary might give people an idea.
FAMOUS "JOCKEY'S RIDGE" DUNE ENCROACHES ON HOMES, WILL BE MOVED BACK: North Carolina park officials on the Outer Banks are working to slow the pace of a massive sand dune that's slowly being pushed each year by winds. The Virginian-Pilot reports that the dune known as Jockey's Ridge typically moves about 6 feet per year. But this year it's shifted about 30 feet in some places, encroaching on some homes. Joy Greenwood is superintendent of Jockey's Ridge State Park. She said the reason the dune has moved more this year has to do with Hurricanes Florence and Michael as well as other storms. Starting next week, dump trucks are going to move tons of sand from the south side of the dune back to the north side. The $1 million job will take about 14,000 truckloads to complete.
TRUMP OFFERS STEEL INSTEAD OF CONCRETE FOR THE WALL, BECAUSE HE'S AN IDIOT: Trump sought to frame a steel barrier as progress, saying Democrats “don’t like concrete, so we’ll give them steel.” The president has already suggested his definition of the wall is flexible, but Democrats have made clear they see a wall as immoral and ineffective and prefer other types of border security funded at already agreed upon levels. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi intends to begin passing individual bills to reopen agencies in the coming days, starting with the Treasury Department to ensure people receive their tax refunds. That effort is designed to squeeze Senate Republicans, some of whom are growing increasingly anxious about the extended shutdown. Among the Republicans expressing concerns was Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, who said Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell should take up bills from the Democratic-led House. “Let’s get those reopened while the negotiations continue,” Collins said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”
TRIAL BEGINS TODAY IN CALIFORNIA OVER TRUMP'S CENSUS IMMIGRANT QUESTION: A trial will begin Monday in federal court in San Francisco over the Trump administration's decision to add a citizenship question to the 2020 U.S. Census. Judge Richard Seeborg is scheduled to hear a week of testimony from experts and other witnesses. The judge will decide whether to allow the question. Seeborg is presiding over lawsuits by California and numerous cities in the state that argue the citizenship question was politically motivated and would discourage immigrants and Latinos from participating in the Census. The plaintiffs say that would result in an undercount that would jeopardize their federal funding and the state's representation in Congress. Data from the Census are used to determine the distribution of Congressional seats to states and billions of dollars in federal funding. "This week we'll bring in witnesses who will demonstrate just how critical an accurate 2020 Census count is for our state and people," California Attorney General Xavier Becerra said in a statement.
SHUTDOWN AMIDST TRUMP TRADE WAR IS CRUSHING AMERICAN FARMERS: Standard & Poor’s, the credit rating firm, estimated last month that shutting down a fourth of the government could shave $1.2 billion off gross domestic product each week the government is closed. Mr. Trump has suggested that he is willing to potentially let the government remain shuttered for more than a year. Farmers who have been relying on an Agriculture Department program to mitigate the impact of the trade war through a special $12 billion subsidy fund are now being left in the lurch. According to a U.S.D.A. spokesman, farmers who have already certified their 2018 production will receive payments under the Market Facilitation Program, despite the lapse in federal funding. But farmers who have not done so must wait to certify until Farm Service Agency offices reopen when funding is restored. Tax refunds will also not be issued during the shutdown, and taxpayers trying to determine their bill for 2018 will not be able to ask questions of the Internal Revenue Service.