First Drip (5/5/15): Property tax increases, mysterious toll lane noncompete clause, more


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We told you that toll lanes project was shady. According to an Observer story, no one seems to know where the updated language, a noncompete clause, in a contract between the Department of Transportation and the private developer it hired to build toll lanes on I-77, came from. "Some area officials were surprised that under the contract with I-77 Mobility Partners, the developer would likely collect damages if the state added two new general-purpose lanes from Exit 28 to Exit 36 at the lake."

City Manager Ron Carlee is recommending property tax increases to help out with the huge hole the city found in its budget caused by lower real estate values and the loss of a business privilege license tax. But wait! "[T]he rate would go up further than the lower property values warrant, high enough to replace another fee that homeowners pay—a flat $47 trash fee. Carlee wants to eliminate that fee," WFAE reports. "He says even with the higher property tax, homes valued under $267,000 would pay the city less overall."

If you needed another reason to hate the Internal Revenue Service, check out this story. A North Carolina small business owner had his entire business bank account seized — to the tune of $107,703 — by the government for no reason other than making cash deposits under $10,000. The law the IRS and Justice Department use to justify a move like this was designed to go after criminals and terrorists. In recent months, both government entities have said they'll back away from using the law, but Lyndon McLellan of Fairmont, North Carolina, is still waiting to get his money back. The prosecutor on the case offered to give him half of his money back in a settlement.

Well this is just creepy and gross. The folks at Paypal are developing a new payment system that works via a small, microchipped pill you swallow every day or two. "Like birth control, per PayPal’s Jonathan Leblanc, the 'next wave of passwords will be edible, ingestible or injectable.'” Folks who have that much trouble remembering passwords need to get their life together.


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