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Headline Roundup: Morrison Resignation Accepted, Cannon House Arrest, More

The Charlotte Mecklenburg School board this afternoon accepted Superintendent Heath Morrison’s voluntary resignation. The board voted 6 to 3 not to give Morrison any special severance pay.

Morrison abruptly announced his resignation on Monday. In his statement, he said he couldn’t give the job the attention it needed while taking care of his mother in Virginia. After the announcement, the Charlotte Observer reported CMS lawyers had completed an investigation. That investigation apparently found that Morrison belittled staff members and misled the school board about the cost to build a new early college high school.

Cannon Under House Arrest
Former Charlotte mayor Patrick Cannon will be under house arrest until he goes to prison later this month. U.S. District Judge Frank Whitney today ordered the house arrest because Cannon voted early for Tuesday’s election, something he lost the right to do over the summer when he pleaded guilty to felony corruption charges. Prosecutors say that violates his bond.

Cannon will report to a federal prison in West Virginia on November 18. He told the judge today he thought he didn’t lose his right to vote until he went to prison. Convicted felons can be charged with another felony if they vote.

Q3 Loss For Chiquita
Chiquita lost $18 million in the third quarter of this year. That works out to 38 cents a share, the same loss as the third quarter in 2013. Analysts were expecting a loss of nine cents a share from the Charlotte-based banana company.

Despite the loss, Chiquita says revenue ticked up 2.2 percent on higher banana sales.

The earnings news follows a turbulent couple of weeks for Chiquita. Shareholders on October 24 voted down a merger deal with the Irish produce company Fyffes. Chiquita’s board preferred that deal to a higher buyout offer from two Brazilian firms, juicemaker Cutrale and The Safra Banking Group. But Chiquita is now in talks with the Brazilian companies about the $14.50 a share deal.

CMPD Willing To Unseal Some Court Orders In Cell Phone Tracking Cases
CMPD says it’s willing to let a judge unseal court orders in some cases where the police department got permission to track suspected criminals’ cell phones. Police say the investigations in question have concluded.

The Charlotte Observer and WBTV had asked Superior Court judge Richard Boner to unseal cell phone surveillance records dating back to 2006. CMPD Chief Rodney Monroe told the judge in a letter yesterday neither CMPD nor the FBI objects to releasing the documents. Monroe added that Charlotte police plan to develop a streamlined process to provide greater access to cell phone tracking requests after suspects are arrested.

NCDOT Recommends Highway Litter Removal Sponsorship
A North Carolina Board of Transportation study recommends sponsorship for highway litter removal and rest areas and increased fees to reduce the amount of taxpayer funds the DOT spends on services. Those services include traffic analysis and inspection and outdoor advertising.  State lawmakers asked for the study as a basis for policy deliberations on the balance between public funding and user fees for infrastructure.  The DOT says in many cases it doesn't collect enough in fees to cover services.

WCU Band To Lead Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade
Western Carolina University's marching band will be the lead band for the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade in New York City. The 500 member band from the Cullowhee school is one of only 10 marching bands selected from across the U.S. to perform this Thanksgiving. Western Carolina’s band in 2011 took part in the Rose Bowl Parade in Pasadena California.